No marriage is perfect; even the happiest of couples have disagreements. Disagreements can often be resolved through mutual understanding and compromise. But what do you do when one's partner has a double standard that continuously frustrates you? What if your husband is quick to call you out on infractions he deems inappropriate, yet commits the same violations himself?
Being in an unequal relationship like this can be incredibly aggravating. No one wants to feel like their spouse is excusing their own bad behavior while simultaneously reprimanding them; so, it is important to address this issue with tact and diplomacy. It is possible to achieve a sense of harmony and parity in spite of the conflicting behaviors.
First and foremost, have a conversation about it. Express how his behavior makes you feel and ask for assurance that he will take self-improvement seriously and strive for better behavior in the future. If having a direct conversation seems difficult, try leaving a thoughtful letter addressing your feelings. When possible, think of solutions that both of you can agree on. Suggesting tangible changes instead of pointing blame will lift any feelings of resentment and create a healthier space for interaction.
It can also help to establish rules and expectations that pertain to both of you. Rules should not aim to penalize or control someone but rather guide the both of you towards a common goal. Couples often work together to create non-judgmental boundaries that allow each person to establish growth; they know what to expect out of one another and take responsibility for their own action.
It may also help to presume positive intent. This means that instead of assuming the worst of someone, you remain focused on the positive reasons behind their potential shortcomings. Thinking in this manner allows each person to have more patience and compassion for the other, making it easier to move past mistakes and focus on growth.
Though it can require overcoming considerable hurdles, it is possible to manage situations where one’s spouse gives themselves a break that they do not give to others. Working as a team and emphasizing self-growth will help pave the way to a healthier relationship and increase the chances of reconciling potentially conflicting behavior. With trust and openness, couples are better equipped to take responsibility for their decisions, find solutions to problems, and ultimately establish a more balanced relationship.
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