Can I go to the gym? May I please take that art class? Can I play poker tonight? Girls are getting together can I go? Good marriage is considerate marriage. Considerate marriage is not obedience based. It is not the military…..Permission to leave the room Honey!

Some of you might be thinking it’s thoughtful to ask permission. Let’s not confuse consideration and thoughtfulness with permission and obedience. They are very different approaches.

The issue of obedience and permission vs. consideration comes up often in marriage complaints. The need to ask permission of our spouse for anything and everything sows the seeds for anger and rebelliousness. She won’t let me do this…He won’t allow me to……This translates into anger hostility and less than desirable name calling.

Some of us mother, some of us father and some of us play out strict authoritarian roles in our marriages. There are those who grew up in strict households where not gaining permission for a pursuit was punishable in the harshest manner. We may have seen our parents modeling the permission and obedience scenarios. Consequently, some of us turn our spouses into behavior enforcers not by their choice but due to a familiar childhood authority scenario in which your spouse is recruited to play out the scene every day. While raising the children the spouse is being raised as well.

If the situation at home warrants your presence and contribution then it is considerate to ask if you can pursue some interest and perhaps switch off your duties or trade for another time. If your are consistently selfish and inconsiderate regarding your responsibilities to your marriage you need to be told and not endured by your spouse.

Consideration and thoughtfulness are the by-product of a marital relationship status that nourishes and provides ample room for each partner to grow individually and as an adult couple who know what their spouse really needs.

Practice mutually considerate behavior in your marriage and you will both reap huge benefits.

Your input comments and suggestions are most welcome here.

-Zev