My husband took me shopping yesterday; he's amazing like that. I've been wanting to get up to Holmes County for quilt batting and fabric and he so nicely made the trip happen. I've told you before how our thrift store adventures turn out. I'm happy to say, we came home without a single cassette in hand. What I may have failed to mention is his other thrift store weakness: Books. Particularly ones that have something to do with marriage. He insists the dusty stack of books hiding out in the back corner of a closet that I roll my eyes over and repeatedly ask permission to dispose of is the reason he is such a marriage expert. He is, so what can I say?
We added to the stack yesterday ---
The page and a half that convinced him to spend a dollar has me intrigued too. It flies full in the face of popular marriage advice these days and I find it very, very interesting. I'm not going to say anything else about it; I'll just pry open the lid on the can and leave it here to let the worms wriggle where they will...
"The wife who studies her husband over the years--really studies him--will come to know him even better than he knows himself. She will be aware of qualities and potentialities in him that he himself may not know are there.
I thought of this the other day when I heard a story about a certain wife in a small Midwestern town, a gentle sweet-tempered woman who's husband was a gay blade, very attractive to women. He knew it, and he took advantage of it at every opportunity--and there were lots of opportunities.
Since it was a small town, this man's amorous adventures were a matter of common knowledge. And since it was a typical small town, there were those who considered it their duty--their somewhat gleeful duty--to tell the wife about the husband's philanderings.
But the curious thing was that these bearers of ill-tidings never seemed to get anywhere with the wife. She would listen patiently to the worst they had to say, then she would smile and reply that she was quite sure they were mistaken. Her Bob was not that kind of man at all. He would be incapable of such deceit. She appreciated their interest, but they really need not concern themselves further, because obviously they didn't know what they were talking about.
The informers kept trying. But against this serene assurance, against this unshakable faith (for that is what it seemed to be) they made no headway whatever.
Meantime, because nothing remains secret in small towns, reports of his wife's attitude got back to the husband. At first he congratulated himself on having a wife whose suspicions were so hard to arouse. He told himself that it made his extra-marital exploits a lot less risky. In fact, it just went to prove his long-time contention that what a wife didn't know wouldn't hurt her.
But gradually a change came over this man. He stopped looking for adventures, and he ceased being responsive when adventurers came looking for him. The townspeople were amazed. One day a man who knew him well asked him what had come over him.
"Well," he said, "I think I could have stood up to any sort of complaint or recrimination from Martha, any wifely jealousy, any amount of anger or accusation. But the one thing I couldn't do was brush off her faith in me. If she thought I was a hero, how could I go on being such a heel? I tried to go on, actually, but I found I just couldn't. I owe her a lot. I'm going to spend the rest of my life trying to make it up to her."
Was that wife simply naive, innocent, starry-eyed? Or did she know her husband better than he knew himself?
Who can say?"
--Quoted from "The Adventure Of Being A Wife" by Mrs. Norman Vincent Peale, chapter 3. Study Your Man
I have not forgotten my last post. I am delighted to say I have had several responses and will be back to share with you! In the meantime I'm still listening if someone has thoughts to share.