Jan 142014 38 Responses

Stop Making Fun of Your Wife

“I don’t mean it.” Yes you do.

“She doesn’t care.” Yes she does.

“They think it’s funny.” No we don’t.

Husbands: a little piece of advice—stop making fun of your wives.

Even if she can’t cook, drive or add, don’t air her faults in public. While playfulness is a sign of a healthy marriage, being playful is different than being hateful. Making fun of your wife is often hateful.

Most husbands don’t mean it that way. A majority of comments meant in jest are just poorly thought through comments hoping for a cheap laugh. The intent is rarely evil, but we still need to stop it. The reward is not worth the risk.

We shouldn’t make fun of our wives because:

She could get the wrong impression. We might not mean a thing by it, but she might take it personally. Even if she says it doesn’t hurt her feelings, are you sure? Can you guarantee it never will?

Others could get the wrong impression. Even if our wife thinks the joke is funny, others could believe there is a lack of respect between you and your wife. Respect is a necessary ingredient for a successful marriage. It is also a necessary element to influence the lives of others. If others believe you do not respect your wife, they will lose respect for you.

We could start believing our jokes. They say behind every joke is a sliver of truth. By calling attention to the faults and failures of another, we can begin to fixate on those faults and failures. In dealing with couples in crisis, I have noticed a correlation between marital problems and a willingness to mock another for their mistakes. (See: 5 Keys to Saving Your Marriage)

When I hear a man make fun of his wife in public, I often wonder, “If he will say that about her in public, what will he say to her in private?”

It’s okay to laugh about a situation. It can be fun to remember a funny story. But it is never right to get a cheap laugh at the expense of our wives. Either be funnier or live without the laugh.

While this is true in every setting, it is especially true for those of us who spend a good amount of our time on stage. As communicators, we are always looking for a moment of levity. Taking a simple shot at our wives seems innocent and playful, but it’s neither. I spend a lot of my time on stage talking about my wife and laughing, yet the key to those stories is to only tell the ones in which the audience will join my wife in laughing at me. For example: On Faking Communion or On George Straight, a First Kiss, and Seminary Women or A Small Fire, a Can of Gasoline, and a Test of My Manhood.

And if I find a story funny (such as How Thanksgiving Killed My Dog) but I’m uncertain how she feels, I ask her. She proofreads the story and deletes what she doesn’t like. If we find a middle ground, I tell the story. If we don’t; I don’t. As for off-the-cuff jokes which she doesn’t know about before hand, they just aren’t worth the risk.

Everyone loves to laugh. Everyone loves to be funny. All humor is risky but that doesn’t mean we should stop. However, some humor is too risky because the risk involves something which is very important. If I make a joke which offends a stranger, I am sorry but life will go on. If I make a joke which deeply wounds the soul of my wife, it’s a mistake made with dire consequences.

So be funny, but leave the wife out of it. Besides, who needs to joke about a wife when we can joke about lawyers, politicians, and Texans?

Question: Do you think the same applies about wives making fun of their husbands?

38 Responses to Stop Making Fun of Your Wife
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