I’ve come to realize that when the word “nag” comes up it is often out of shame.
Scenario: my wife asks me to do the dishes. I leave them because I’m watching sports. My game is over, she asks again. I say, “In a minute,” and check my email. An hour later she walks up to me and says, “Why are you on your computer? Can’t you just do the freaking dishes like I asked? It would’ve taken 10 minutes, but you’re just sitting on your computer. Ugh… whatever… I’ll just do it.”
For men, this is when we start to think “nag.” It’s because of how our wives talk to us.
However, our wives (at least my wife) don’t get to that point until after they have asked kindly a few times. In their frustration a little bit of shame gets dropped on us.
Because we men often suck at feelings, we respond with “my wife is nagging me,” instead of realizing we feel ashamed we didn’t do what we said we’d do, and we feel our wife just shamed us and we don’t know how to address that.
I’m learning to recognize this in myself and address it, rather than lashing out at my wife in defense.
Your article is a great reminder, and perspective, on what we husbands often are putting our wives through while operating on our own little worlds.
We can certainly do better, step up, and get our heads in the game.