Wendyl Nissen

Wendyl Nissen on being 'The Supportive Wife'

Wendyl Nissen: Doing nice things for hubby makes me happy

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I'm a very happy, supportive wife.
Photo / Thinkstock
I'm a very happy, supportive wife. Photo / Thinkstock

Being happy in a marriage is something we all strive for. And those of us who have been married a while know that the couple who say they have never had a fight, never said a bad word to each other or disagreed on anything are either lying or have a serious non-communication issue.

My year of being a supportive wife has changed many things about me, the biggest being that I now enjoy being kind.

Doing nice things for my husband makes me happy.

Which is why I stumbled across The Happy Wives Club. It's a bestselling book by an ecstatically happy wife called Fawn Weaver.

In the book she recommends that not only should wives be supportive but they should also get it over with and bloody well surrender.

To maintain a happy marriage, you have to write down every day the things for which you are grateful to your husband.

And the kicker is - they have to be different every day. If you do this apparently you'll be really happy in a matter of days.

I tried doing it this morning and came up with four things, including the fact that he makes me cups of tea.

I'll be struggling not to repeat myself tomorrow. Apparently if this happens you can write a list of all the things you are grateful your husband is not such as short, fat, repetitive, selfish, a bad kisser etc.

Another thing you must do is kiss your husband on the mouth, with tongues, a lot. And you must not have any friends of the opposite sex, so he never has to wonder if you are having an affair with them.

You must also write down all the things that drive you nuts about your husband and throw them away, forgetting them and getting over it.

And you must not talk negatively to your friends about your marriage.

I may be a supportive wife, but I can do none of these things.

For a start I don't have time in the mornings to take myself off with my cute Happy Wives notebook and pen, sit in the sun with a latte and doodle sweet nothings about my husband.

Nor do I have time to think about short, fat, selfish men.

I like to kiss my husband but I'm not sure I want to do it every five minutes, breaking into his and my work routine for a quick pash or stopping in the middle of the supermarket for a good tonguing.

My children would not tolerate it for a start - public displays of affection between parents are yuck. (I notice Fawn Weaver doesn't have any children.)

I would not be willing to give up my male friends either, for one simple word - trust. If your husband sits at home fretting and chewing his fingernails every time you have lunch with a male friend because he's worried you have whipped off to a motel for a quick hook-up, then there are bigger problems in your marriage.

Having lunch with a man who is not your husband is an important demonstration of trust in a marriage for both of you.

By eliminating my men friends, I'm basically saying to my husband, "You're right, I'm a cheating whore underneath it all who can't wait to get into other men's pants. Best I put temptation out of the way."

As for the things that drive me nuts about my husband, I am not letting those go.

For a start, they are the root of a lot of humour in my home, and when he asks me if everything's all right you need to have something to talk about.

And I will talk to my friends in a negative way about my marriage. I have one friend I tell everything to, and without her I would have no way to work through the little hiccoughs that every marriage encounters, however minor.

Sometimes I see her suppressing the urge to laugh out loud at my murmurings, they are so trivial. She knows it and I know it but we talk about it and I feel better. And most of the time she takes my husband's side which is good for me. She loves us both, she can put it all in perspective.

So while I'm a very happy, supportive wife, there'll be no Happy Wives Club for me.

- NZ Herald

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