Marital Advice From A Divorced Person

By Jackie Pilossoph, Creator and Editor-in-chief, Divorced Girl Smiling site, podcast and app, Love Essentially columnist and author

About a week ago, I happened to hear a woman tell another woman that her new year’s resolution was “to be nicer to her husband.”

I have no idea who the woman was, but I have to tell you, right when I heard it, it depressed me! A person has to make an effort to be nicer to the person they stood in front of God and promised to love, honor and cherish till death do they part?? Like it’s not an easy thing to do, like it requires work? My point is, shouldn’t “being nice to someone-the someone who you are supposed to love more than anyone else on this earth”-be a given?

I know what you’re thinking, by the way. What right does Jackie, a divorced person have giving advice in this arena? I can understand that. So, here’s what I will tell you. Not being nice to my husband wasn’t the reason we got divorced. In fact, I remember being nice as a priority for me for my entire marriage. Yes, I made a ton of other mistakes when I was married, that I’m more than happy to own up to, but not being nice was NOT one of them.

Here’s the thing about being married (or even just being in a relationship). It’s like having a child or a pet or a plant or all of those things. You have to take care of it, you have to nurture it, love it, water it, feed it, protect it, everything to keep it alive.

Being married can sometimes feel like work, and I think that’s normal. I think everyone has times when they are listening to their husband talk about something he’s talked about 50,000 times. You roll your eyes in your head, or simply tune him out, and think to yourself, ‘What the hell am I doing with this guy?’ Am I right?

The thing is, if you accept it, and just listen, because that’s what he wants from you–nothing else, just validation—than it won’t annoy you so much. Also, think about things that YOU must do that annoy your husband. And most times, men choose to tune us out, and/or pretend to be listening to us complain for the 1000th time about our mother-in-law or our sister we just got into a fight with or a neighbor who we can’t stand. And then what do they do? They tell us it’s going to be okay, and then they say, “Hey, where ya want to go eat?” or even more so, they start trying to have sex with us!

That brings me to the other part of this blog. Is there a connection between being nicer to your husband and your sex life? Absolutely!

I was just talking to a friend of mine the other day, who told me that she knows this woman who “has to have sex with her husband every day.” So, of course, I was like, “Please expand.” My friend says, “That’s all I know.”

So, if the woman “has to have sex with her husband every day,” is it because they have some kind of agreement? Or, maybe he told her that before they were married? Or, maybe she likes that, and she doesn’t mind. Does she have the option of saying, “Honey, I’m not in the mood?”

The thing is, ask any woman if she wants to have sex every single day of her life and she is most likely going to say, “No, thank you.” That said, I think most women enjoy sex, but what woman wants to have sex with a man who is mean to her? What woman wants a man touching her naked body who ignores her, or never compliments her? No woman. So, this is what I want to say to husbands. Be nicer to us and you will undoubtedly see the fruits of your efforts. Tell us we look pretty, buy us flowers every now and then, hold our hand in public. Make us feel loved and we will want to love you. Literally.

Let me turn this around and say, what guy wants to have sex with a wife who is mean to him? EVERY guy! Guys could care less. Nice, mean, indifferent, whatever. They’ll take it.

And this is what I want to say to women. If you are nicer to your husband, he might not want sex as much. I swear by this. Sometimes, all a guy wants is a back scratch or a hug, or a real kiss, or a really nice dinner on the table (his favorite thing) once in awhile that’s just for him. Men want to feel loved and respected and important and valued.

Sometimes I think men need so much sex because it’s their way of feeling loved. And, it doesn’t have to be that way. Love him in other ways, and it will come back to you in really, really good ways. I truly believe that.

Don’t keep score. Don’t think, “Well, HE would never do this for me, so why should I do this for him?” Do it for him because you are doing a nice thing for the man whose ring you are wearing that signifies you are best friends. Buy him a nice card and write something really sweet on it just for nothing, no occasion. Get him a nice new shirt for his upcoming business meeting that he’s nervous about. Something even as simple as whispering in his ear, “I just want you to know that I really really love you,” will go such a long way.

The last thing I will say about sex is, doing all these kind things, and being nicer to your husband will make your sex life so good, you may not mind having sex every day!

One last thought. If you read this and decided to start being nicer to your husband, don’t stop there. Decide to be nicer to everyone! I promise, it will come back to you in really, really good ways.

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    Editor-in-chief: Jackie Pilossoph

    Divorced Girl Smiling is here to empower, connect and inspire you. Jackie Pilossoph is the creator and Editor-In-Chief of Divorced Girl Smiling, the site, the podcast and the app. A former television journalist and newspaper features reporter, Pilossoph is also the author of four novels and the writer of her weekly relationship column, Love Essentially. Pilossoph holds a Masters degree in journalism and lives in Chicago with her two teenagers. The author of the novels, Divorced Girl Smiling and Free Gift With Purchase, Pilossoph also writes the weekly dating and relationships advice column, “Love Essentially”, published in the Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press and the Chicago Tribune online. Additionally, she is a Huffington Post contributor. Pilossoph holds a Masters degree in journalism from Boston University.

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