She sounds like a broken record and when she nags, everyone tunes her out. And she wonders why.
Do you know how some people nag their spouse to get something done? If something is time sensitive and needs to be done right away and there is no movement toward getting it done after the request is made, is it nagging to urge them on?
Nagging is often heard as criticism. It simply doesn’t work.
Guys. . . listen up!
If you want her to stop nagging. . . begin to participate more in the relationship. Women usually nag when you are not paying attention to her needs. Not good. Improving the lines of communication is a good place to begin.
Here are some of the words that sound like nagging: faultfinding, continually complaining, criticism, being catty, coaxing, demanding, berate, splitting hairs, being insistent, nit-picking, badger, being overcritical, pestering, and being pettish. I’m sure there are other words that fall into this category.
The reason she sounds like a nag and a broken-record is partly due to her lack of communication skills and because you are not participating fully in the relationship.
“Nagging takes the form of verbal reminders, requests, and pleas,” says Michele Weiner-Davis, MSW, a marriage and family therapist and author of several relationship books, including Getting Through to the Man you Love and The Sex-Starved Marriage. “You can say it in a number of different ways, but when you say it in a number of different ways over and over again, that constitutes nagging.”
Sure, you have a lot on your mind, but so does she. No excuses.
What is your attitude about chores, picking up after yourself and the annoying habits that may offend your partner? Pick up your dirty clothes and put them in the clothes hamper. Never conveniently forget to take out the trash or garbage. Surprise her and run the vacumn. Put the toilet seat down (it’s a matter of respect). Follow through with promises to help with the household chores.
Give her the TV remote and watch something that she likes! A “chick flick” perhaps? Accept your responsibility in helping to create a home environment that triggers a nagging response in your partner. Then do something different to improve the situation.
What if there’s something at the root of her incessant complaining. Nagging is an awful way of communicating or asking for what she wants, but she may have a valid point.
Become a better listener. Listen for clues that may be an opportunity for you to fulfill a need that your partner has, than do something about it. Listen to what she is saying and see if you can address the issues that concern her most. If you ignore your partner’s requests or refuse to acknowledge that you heard what she said to you, if you want the nagging to stop, you must stop the behavior that triggers the nagging.
You are partners. Act like it!
Gals, listen up! It’s your turn. . .
“Harry, clean up your mess in the bathroom, wash the dishes, take out the trash, pick up your socks!” Nag, nag, nag! How long will it take for you to learn that asking for the same thing over and over again (believe it or not) just doesn’t work? Nagging doesn’t help the relationship. So, stop it!
The more you nag, the more your partner will avoid you or withdraw both emotionally and physically from you. Intimacy disappears. And when that happens, you nag some more. The more the nagger nags, the more isolated she becomes.
Most women deny they nag. They see themselves as reminding their partner to do the things that must be done: household chores, taking their medication, fixing broken things and picking up their mess – all the while thinking, “I shouldn’t have to tell him.” You’re right and there are better ways to ask your partner to do things around the house. Nagging causes resentful. It makes your spouse be defensive. Nagging is disrespectful. Your partner will become increasingly more defensive each time you ask for something.
Most women know they are being irritating, but they believe the way to get through to a man is by repeating, over and over, the same instructions until one day, they hopefully, sink in. Some men are dense. Instead of nagging, share how you feel when he doesn’t do something he promised. You might say, “When you don’t take out the trash, I FEEL (fill in the blank).
No one can argue with YOUR feelings. They can and they will lose the argument. And. . . most men don’t like to hear that their partner feels bad about something they did or did not do. That’s much better than saying, “You NEVER take out the trash. How many times do I have to tell you?” It might help if you begin treating him like an adult instead of a kid.
“Obviously, if a woman feels responded to she won’t need to keep bringing up the same issues,” says Jamie Turndorf, Ph.D., who is author of Till Death Do Us Part (Unless I Kill You First). “On the surface, it’s easy to assume that it’s all the nagee’s fault – if he responded better, nagging wouldn’t be happening.”
To sum it up. Nagging doesn’t work. Men everywhere put nagging at the top of the list of their pet peeves. Healthy relationships are based on mutual care-taking.
Copyright © 2011 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and a nondenominational minister. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.
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