0:00:00 – Speaker 1
nextTalk contains content of a mature nature. Parental guidance is advised.
0:00:36 – Speaker 3
Today we’re talking about expectations for our spouse.
0:00:41 – Speaker 1
This is a big one. I mean, this is like a big deal.
0:00:44 – Speaker 3
Well, I feel like this is what a lot of fights are about in our marriage, like just unmet expectations that we have.
0:00:52 – Speaker 1
We even did a show about it, charles, and I did one on how to communicate your expectations to your spouse, because they are so often unmet and that, I think, is kind of the basis for so many difficulties in marriage, even not just arguments, but just misunderstandings, unmet expectations, feeling left alone, lost, confused All kinds of things happen because we never share what we expect.
0:01:17 – Speaker 3
Well, and I think about Matt and I our expectations have changed over time Because of our schedules and because of kids and the demands that that brings, and so if we’re not continually talking about well, these are my new expectations of you, like I need you to do all this, then it results in frustration and then sometimes, if we’re not even communicating that frustration, it builds and builds and builds, and then you’re screaming over something stupid, and it’s all about the ex, you know, yes, or there’s a big wall in between you and you’re wondering why you’re growing apart.
0:01:49 – Speaker 1
Yes, because you’re just not talking about it.
0:01:51 – Speaker 2
0:01:52 – Speaker 1
And it’s funny because when we think about expectations, it’s easy to think about the big things, but a lot of times it’s also the little things and we’re thinking you know, they should know this and it’s clear, everyone would do that and they’re not ever communicated. And so, big and little, today we really want to talk about the importance of setting expectations. I mean, I can give you a perfect example I’ve been married now 16 and a half years together, like 22 years, so I kind of know this man.
You know him and he kind of knows me and we were sitting at the dinner table, the five of us, and I love to cook and I love like to feed my family. That brings me a lot of joy.
0:02:34 – Speaker 3
Oh my gosh, that’s not me.
0:02:36 – Speaker 1
It’s not me, andy.
0:02:37 – Speaker 3
I do not love to cook, but you know that’s another way. I just do not love to cook. I do it because I need to.
0:02:44 – Speaker 1
Which is an expressed expectation.
0:02:46 – Speaker 3
Yes, okay, Okay, go ahead. I know when we come over.
0:02:50 – Speaker 1
It’s pizza or burgers?
0:02:51 – Speaker 3
Yes, and I love that these are your options, because I know what to expect.
0:02:55 – Speaker 1
Maybe some veggies and dip, anyways. So here we are sitting at the table and I fed my family and it was one of those good nights where everybody liked it, which is super rare when you have little ones and so I was feeling pretty good and everybody’s like that was a good night. I was feeling pretty good and everybody’s like that was so good.
0:03:10 – Speaker 3
Winning, you’re winning.
0:03:11 – Speaker 1
I’m like, yeah, and then everybody got up and went inside on the couch and they’re like turning on the TV and setting up a monopoly game. And I’m like, sitting at this table with all these dirty dishes, like there’s pans all over the kitchen and there’s dirty.
0:03:26 – Speaker 3
Because the meal took a lot of effort. It did Because you enjoy love and effort.
0:03:30 – Speaker 1
All these things yeah, it was the whole thing and I’m like looking at it and I can feel the anger. Do you know that feeling?
0:03:37 – Speaker 3
You’re getting ready to go off. You’re crazy. Mom is getting ready to like. Watch out.
0:03:42 – Speaker 1
And I can feel it bubbling up and I’m like getting hot, like I’m taking off my sweater and I know bad things are about to happen and I’m trying to be a nextTalk mom and so I’m talking myself through it.
0:03:53 – Speaker 3
I’m like why Talking yourself off the ledge? Yeah, why am I feeling this way?
0:03:56 – Speaker 1
Why am I so angry? What is going on here? And I’m like I want to go sit on the couch and do nothing, but I also would like a clean kitchen. And I don’t want to do it. And I’m like, is that fair? Seems fair. Is it a reasonable expectation? Seems like a reasonable expectation. Have you expressed that expectation? And that’s when it’s like oh, 22 years and I’ve never said hey, after dinner, I’d like to have a minute while you clean the kitchen. You would think that I would have known to do that.
0:04:26 – Speaker 3
So here I’m getting, or wait a minute In my mind. The husband would just have known to help out.
0:04:32 – Speaker 1
I did have that thought too. I was like listen, I mean, I was like talking to him.
0:04:36 – Speaker 3
That’s where I go with Matt, like I’m like you should know, like you’ve sat here and watched me do all this, oh yeah, so when are you going to offer?
0:04:43 – Speaker 1
Do you have the conversation in your head, like I’m like telling him in my head oh my gosh, like look around, buster. Do you not see the list of things that need to be done? Can’t you tell how tired I am?
0:04:55 – Speaker 3
0:04:55 – Speaker 1
Yeah, I did that too. Let’s just be real, anyway. So my husband walks in to get a drink and he sees, and he knows he can just look at me. He sees the look of crazy mom getting ready to erupt and he’s like is there something we need to talk about? And I, very calmly, which I feel like.
0:05:12 – Speaker 3
Sometimes that makes you go even crazier because, you’re like yeah.
0:05:17 – Speaker 1
Hello, yeah, that’s mine. Yeah, thanks, so everybody’s lounging on the couch and I’m cleaning up.
0:05:23 – Speaker 3
What do you think we need to talk about right now?
0:05:26 – Speaker 1
And I was able to put aside my Ideas of wanting to throw the couch pillows at them and the leftover food. And I calmly said, do you think that after dinner I could just go have a minute to myself and you could be in charge of cleaning up the kitchen? And I was like bracing, he’s gonna be like.
I’ve had a long day, like I’m imagining this whole scenario and he was like, oh yeah, sure that makes sense. Oh my gosh, yeah, like all these years, all these years and that was a while ago now and he and the kids clean the kitchen every time, every night, not a word. They put on the music, they have fun, and I’m like I could have been having this alone time like self-care time all this time. So the point of that story is it was just such a small thing that seemed so obvious, but I never communicated it and so it was not obvious to my husband. He thought I enjoyed the cleanup process as much as I did the cooking.
0:06:20 – Speaker 3
You just ridiculous, but yeah.
0:06:22 – Speaker 1
I I’d never communicated it so big and small, and it makes a huge difference.
0:06:28 – Speaker 3
It feels like Christmas because you get like a minute to go away, and now you have your process in place.
0:06:34 – Speaker 1
Yes, and I feel like a better person.
0:06:36 – Speaker 3
Well, and you know, sometimes it’s not that easy.
No sometimes your husband is gonna say, yeah, I don’t want to do that either, and so then it may be like a rotation schedule or it may be, you know, your kids are older and then they get to do help with that.
Yep, but whatever it is, come up with a solution. I know Matt and I have had similar situations I’ve shared before about the big brown chair, and when he gets in it and you know I’m over there and I’m my blood is boiling, boiling, and, and so I can relate to this. I think a lot of people can relate to this, both men and women. Yeah, and you know, on the flip side of that, I’ve had a lot of guys tell me when I come home, like I want the house organized, it is not, you know, and so that create because the moms are at home, and you know, in this situation, the one that I’m particularly thinking about, you know mom is at home trying to get by like I know what that’s like, and so it just takes a little bit of communication to figure it out and who’s gonna do what and it’s not always hard to communicate those things.
0:07:40 – Speaker 1
I mean, it’s not as easy, it is hard a lot of times.
0:07:43 – Speaker 3
Well, I think what happens is the expectations don’t get met and then we Boil on in our anger and it comes out in such a non Effective way, you know. We’re screaming at them and talking about all their failures Instead of just saying like I need help here, Right, what can you do to help the situation? Because, I want our home to be organized too, and I want it to be, you know, productive, but I’m struggling to get it all done.
0:08:10 – Speaker 1
Well, and even before we get to the angry part, a lot of times we just think I’m not going to express this expectation Because I’m worried about being judged, I’m worried about feeling vulnerable, like maybe this isn’t a reasonable expectation. Just because I like it, maybe it’s not a reasonable one.
0:08:25 – Speaker 3
I think for me too. I feel guilty that.
0:08:27 – Speaker 1
I can’t do it all. I can’t do it all.
0:08:30 – Speaker 3
Yes, I know, for me I have struggled lately with you know I’m back at work now and so like things like housekeeping and grocery store, like normally, when I was more of a stay at home mom, I was able to get that done. I can’t now and it stresses me out because the household needs to run, and so just having those really frank conversations. But it was a pride thing for me, like going to my husband and saying, like I can’t handle all this, like I can’t do all of it. And then it was met with well, tell me how to fix it. Like that’s what he wanted to do. He was like, tell me how to fix it, I don’t want you overwhelmed but like with my schedule, I can’t do it either. So what’s the solution and you know we were able to talk through those things let’s put money in the budget for a grocery pickup, which I know is such a first world problem.
0:09:17 – Speaker 1
But you know what I mean. It’s a thing, it’s helpful.
0:09:19 – Speaker 3
Yes, and like just getting help where we didn’t before. You know outside of our family that we may have to pay for, but it’s worth it when we’re both struggling Absolutely.
0:09:30 – Speaker 1
So what we really have to do first and foremost and I think we’ve made this clear is that you have to recognize that everyone’s expectations are unique and they have to be communicated clearly. Clearly is a key word there. You have to communicate them, and it’s got to be clear communication, because what seems logical for you may not be for me, especially when you have two people entering into marriage. I mean, think about this Like two people with totally different backgrounds. The expectations and the way households will run and the experiences they had are completely different. You enter into this union, this lifelong, hopefully union, and you’re supposed to understand how the other person wants to operate and does operate. I mean, it sounds kind of crazy when you think of it that way. So if you don’t communicate those things, how will your spouse know? And then you’re back in this bad situation again. I honestly think that this is one of the biggest parts of a healthy marriage, I agree, is being able to communicate your expectations clearly and in detail.
0:10:29 – Speaker 3
Yeah, and it’s you’re being a model for your kids, because, as your kids see, you do this, you can do it with them. I think we need to show, too, about the expectations for kids. We’re going to have one of those, but you’re being a good model for their future relationships.
And even for their employing. When they’re employed, you have to have expectations and need to know what you need to meet to accomplish this thing. It’s the same thing, and I like what you said about every family so unique and dynamic and your needs are going to be different than ours, but you just need to be able to communicate that instead of yelling at your spouse and getting mad at them because they’re not doing what you want them to do. It’s not about getting our spouse to do what they want us to do. It’s about saying, hey, I need help in these areas. What are you willing to help with, or what can we do to fix the problem? That’s really what it’s about.
0:11:21 – Speaker 1
It really is. I have a really great example of this and I’m using something that seems so small and trivial, but it really magnifies how important it is to be clear when you set those expectations. When we came into marriage, I imagined what our family was going to look like, and once we had kids, I just imagined Charles would come home and he’d run through the door and he’d be like yay, I’m home, let’s go outside and play basketball, let’s ride our bikes, let’s play Monopoly, let’s hang out all night and watch movies and read books to the kids every night like three and four, and have great conversations and then put them to bed with prayers and kisses, and it’ll be beautiful, like literally. That was my detailed expectation of what a day would look like.
0:12:05 – Speaker 3
And then we had to. Those are high expectations, kim. I know that’s the other thing, and I didn’t even we are off the chart on our expectations.
0:12:12 – Speaker 1
And I didn’t even have that growing up, which is why it was an unreachable expectation, because I’d never had anything close to that, but I imagine that’s what other people’s homes looked like, you created this dream in your head of what it was A Disney World family in my head, yeah.
And so once we had kids and obviously that expectation was not met every night, I shared that with my husband in detail and he laughed really hard. And then he was like I hear you, though, and I was like, well, what do you see it looking like? And it was really funny because he’s like well, when I come home I want to be like, hey, everybody. And then I want to go in the room and close the door and I want to close the blinds and sit in quiet. I want to take off all my clothes and sit in my underwear and catch up on sports for a little while and not be interrupted. And then come out and dinner is on the table and we all sit there and eat, and then maybe maybe we’ll watch a show together or maybe we’ll go outside and play for a few minutes, and then I kiss the kids and they go to bed, we pray and they go to bed.
0:13:13 – Speaker 3
So you guys were on opposite ends of this thing?
0:13:15 – Speaker 1
Yes, for sure, but by him being super detailed, like literally even down to like I want to sit in my underwear quietly. I was able to be like that sounds terrible and I laughed at his expectation and then we were able to have this really great conversation. Well, how are we going to make this work? Because it shouldn’t be just one or the other, and so we have come up with this way Like we take turns doing bedtime. When he comes home, he gets some time to go into the room and just to be quiet and have some downtime, and then he comes out and he knows OK, this is kid time and we go outside and play. And it’s just finding something that works where we both feel like our expectation is being met and we’re both being heard over time. So it’s been a learning process to learn how to do that so that nobody feels like they’re having to give up everything and compromise is huge.
Compromise is huge. You’ve got to be willing to compromise. You can’t always be right or have it your way.
0:14:04 – Speaker 3
If you’re just now tuning in, this is nextTalk Radio at 2 PM on AM 6 30,. The word nextTalk Radio is sponsored in part by PAX Financial Group and listeners just like you. Everything we do at our nonprofit to keep kids safe online is accomplished through your donations To support our organizations. Go to nexttalkorg and click on Give.
0:14:34 – Speaker 2
There’s big news if you are an investment client of USAA. Just recently, USAA announced that a Cleveland Ohio Corporation has entered into an agreement to purchase USAA asset management. They have always been an exceptional organization and will continue to serve our community well, but if you are considering a change, this might be the right time to look at San Antonio’s PAX Financial Group 210-881-5700, paxfinancialgroupcom.
0:15:00 – Speaker 3
Investment advisory services operates through PAX Financial Group.
0:15:09 – Speaker 1
So we’re talking about expectations with your spouse, which is a really big part of having a healthy marriage. There are some really big traps with this that I think all of us have fallen into before. It is comparison and the should have knowns.
0:15:24 – Speaker 3
Well, in the comparison, I’m just going to tell you, social media has elevated us to new heights. It’s crazy, and in my mind I’m thinking we’re a couple days away from Valentine’s Day. I’m just going to say it right now. I’m just going to say it. If your expectation of how your husband treats you on Valentine’s Day has changed over time like mine has you have to communicate that to him.
Matt and I did a show on our month of marriage series about gift giving and we talked about Christmas and how we never bought gifts for each other because it was just never in our budget. And this year we changed, we changed it up and it was so much fun, like we set a budget and it was a reasonable budget, because before I always grew up with when he would surprise me with a lavish gift, and lavish I say $300 or more, for me that’s lavish, right. And so I would get stressed out about budget because I’m like that wasn’t in the line item, like I don’t know where that’s coming from and I couldn’t enjoy the spontaneity of that gift, right. And so being able to communicate to him OK, I’m ready for that, I’m ready for gifts, but can we do it on a budget, like we each get a set amount. It was so much fun, yes.
0:16:39 – Speaker 2
Right, and so that’s a compromise.
0:16:41 – Speaker 3
But now Valentine’s is around the corner and I’m thinking the same thing, because this is what I’ve done the last couple years. I’ve seen on social media all these amazing things that girls are getting and I’m like why aren’t I getting anything? Oh boy, the comparison.
And if you listen to that show, then you know that it was because my expectations of gifts had changed over time and I had not communicated it to Matt, and so he’s like well, I thought that I was blessing you by not spending the budget, because you get stressed out about that. Yes, and so it’s all about that. But the comparison trap is big, especially around Valentine’s Day. So I guess what I’m saying to you is if you have never exchanged gifts and you’re expecting a gift you like, you need to communicate that, because you’re probably not going to get a gift, and then you’re going to be mad about it.
0:17:31 – Speaker 1
Yeah, well, and I think it’s you know, yes, around the holidays and stuff, but year round it’s so easy to compare yourself to your friends, something you watch on tv, like you said, on Facebook, I mean, it’s just out of control. Out of control. But I had a friend recently and she was saying I need to ask you a question and it’s kind of personal, and I was like oh, those are scary.
0:17:53 – Speaker 3
Yeah, I was like all right where are we going, sister, where are we going?
0:17:57 – Speaker 1
And she’s like my husband saw this movie early in our marriage, and the movie implied that it’s normal for couples to have sex every day, or sometimes twice a day, and so he did this.
0:18:12 – Speaker 3
Okay, wait, did this couple in this movie? Did they have kids? I have no idea. There’s no way. Well, it’s a movie. I guess anything could be. Yeah, who knows? I mean, you know, anything could be presented like it’s normal, exactly, you know who knows in Hollywood?
0:18:27 – Speaker 1
yeah, exactly, and so she’s like so, um, yeah, is that?
0:18:31 – Speaker 3
normal. How many times are they basically saying how many times you have sex a week?
0:18:35 – Speaker 1
That’s what she wanted to know. And here they are, like 15 years in a marriage and she’s like I have never asked anyone this because I’m so worried about the answer. She’s like because I am tired. She’s like I do not want to have sex every day or twice a day and he says that everybody else is. All of our friends are having sex once or twice a day. And I just don’t think it’s true and I am tired of holding it in and I just need to know and I’m like, wow, that’s a lot of pressure. 15 years.
0:18:59 – Speaker 3
Maybe we need to take a poll 15 years built up.
0:19:02 – Speaker 1
There are polls in all kinds of magazines. I’m like have you not read a magazine, sister? That was judgmental. Anyway, my point was I shared with her not in detail my understanding of what is normal and I said normal has to work for both of you.
0:19:20 – Speaker 3
I’m anxious to hear your answer here.
0:19:22 – Speaker 1
I said normal is what is normal for you guys, because every couple is different and that has to be an expressed expectation.
0:19:30 – Speaker 3
She wanted a number.
0:19:31 – Speaker 1
She wanted a number, I wanted a number, kim, I was like no, because my number is going to be different than your number. Yeah, and I think different seasons, different seasons of life, like when you have a little person waking you up in the middle of the night and you’re exhausted or you’re going through a stressful job situation or whatever this just you can’t have a set number, like they were marketing on the calendar. And he’s like oh okay, see that I can’t.
0:19:54 – Speaker 3
I can’t do the marketing on the calendar thing.
0:19:56 – Speaker 1
I know a lot of couples that mark the calendar. Well, maybe you have to it doesn’t work for us.
0:20:01 – Speaker 3
No me neither, because I feel like it’s too like programmed.
0:20:06 – Speaker 1
Yes, like I just need to, okay. But if it works and it’s an expressed expectation, that is true and both agree to it, then that’s what your number is. And that is the point is that if you’re not talking about it, somebody’s always going to feel like they’re getting the short end of the stick. Oh my gosh, that’s bad, kim. I did not mean that that is bad. That was not planned. Well, it just came out. Okay, we need to move on. We need to move on From that bad, bad joke. It was so bad, it was bad. The point is that the good end to this story is that she was able to talk to her husband and I gave her permission to say this is what Kim said. And so now I’m the bad guy, but that’s okay, because at least they had the conversation and now they’ve come to an understanding and she’s like sex is better than ever now, because I’m actually enjoying it, because I’m not forced into it.
0:20:55 – Speaker 3
Well, that’s my thing. I mean sex should be exciting for both of you guys. It shouldn’t be like, well, I’m making this person, making this person happy. It should be a mutual thing. That’s how God intended it. Yeah, but it is a big topic it is, and I think you know different people have different needs Absolutely, and so you have to talk through that with your spouse because they may have, they may need it more, they may I’m just putting it out there and talk to your doctor. I mean it can be, you know, if one party doesn’t want to have it or if it’s painful. I know this sounds weird, but talk to your doctor Absolutely, like it shouldn’t be painful, absolutely, and if there’s something going on like you need to get it resolved because again it goes back to the unmet expectations and you know the whole point of this is comparing like we could hit.
0:21:42 – Speaker 1
this husband for 15 years was comparing their marriage to a movie and to what he thought other couples were doing, and that doesn’t work.
0:21:50 – Speaker 3
Can I just say, though, one to two times a day is just with kids, like I just think that’s not possible. If both of you agree, I mean I guess if you both weren’t that much, then more power to you, I’m like, wow, I’ll just leave it at that.
0:22:05 – Speaker 1
So then there’s also the should have knowns. This is a big trap that we all fall into what they should have known, that this is what I wanted. They should have known that this is what should have been done. Just take that out of your vocabulary, because even if they do know, you might as well express it to make sure you’re on the same page.
0:22:24 – Speaker 3
You’ve already covered this because, like with Charles and the dishes, you’re like you should have known.
0:22:29 – Speaker 1
They don’t know, they don’t know and we don’t know all the time.
0:22:32 – Speaker 3
We don’t know. Everybody thinks differently about these issues and, like you said, how they were raised, the expectations in their homes. Sometimes they just pick that up and they never communicate it to you, absolutely.
0:22:43 – Speaker 1
And then, of course, as you grow and as your family changes and you go through different seasons, and as you just get older, you have to continually talk about your expectations, because they’re going to change.
0:22:54 – Speaker 3
I’ve changed so much in the last four years. Yes, me too, and I went from being a stay-at-home mom to a working mom. That changed everything Everything about my expectations about, like I was the one who took care of everything because that was my job when I was at home. Ok, that’s no longer my job. So, we’ve got to have a conversation about what this looks like now.
0:23:16 – Speaker 1
Now, we didn’t plan for this show to be about sex. We really didn’t.
0:23:19 – Speaker 3
We’re going back to sex. We’re going back to it for just a minute. Oh my gosh, right before Valentine’s Day.
0:23:22 – Speaker 1
Because it’s right before Valentine’s Day. I’m just going to say, one of the big example of that for me, which I continually laugh at, is again Facebook and all my friends, you, everybody’s so beautiful.
0:23:36 – Speaker 3
They do makeup and hair and you get the cute little outfits Girl, are you for real right now? And the cute little earrings. Well, that’s because we only post when we’re looking good on Facebook. We don’t post when we’re laying in bed, crying about everything.
0:23:50 – Speaker 1
I just like if I put on makeup and do my hair, people think there’s an emergency, like a funeral, or like I’m going on TV, because I just don’t do it very often and so I don’t. It was just building up inside that I should look like that every day. And that, when it was time to be intimate, that I should put on some like fancy intimate clothes, like lingerie.
0:24:10 – Speaker 3
Like lingerie. I’m just going to say it.
0:24:13 – Speaker 1
And I remember once we started having kids and I was like there ain’t no time for that.
0:24:17 – Speaker 3
Yeah, there ain’t no time.
0:24:18 – Speaker 1
I just need you to be naked. And I was like, oh, OK, Because I was like I don’t have time to have sex Because it’s too much work.
0:24:26 – Speaker 3
No time for shopping for lingerie putting on the glitter lotion. You don’t have time for that. No.
0:24:31 – Speaker 1
I’m here and that’s about all I got. And he was like that’s all I want, and so to be, able we make it more than what it should be, and to be able to express that expectation. For him and for me, that was such a relief, like I don’t have to do the whole show. Yeah, not that it was a show, that’s not even way too crazy, but you know, ok, we’ll just move on, you don’t?
0:24:52 – Speaker 3
have to do all the effort. He just wants you.
0:24:54 – Speaker 1
We’re in a new season of life. He just wants you. So those expectations will change as you grow as a couple and over time and as you get tired. So let’s just say it. Anyway, let’s just get down to the very important points of this show.
0:25:08 – Speaker 3
We talked a lot about sex today.
0:25:09 – Speaker 1
More than I thought we were going to.
0:25:10 – Speaker 2
It was never a plan, but it’s good.
0:25:12 – Speaker 3
It’s good, tom, it was all good stuff, real talk.
0:25:15 – Speaker 1
Number one recognize that everyone’s expectations are unique and must be communicated clearly. Number two avoid the expectation traps of comparison and the should have knowns. And number three continually talk about your expectations. They will change over time.
0:25:33 – Speaker 2
Thanks for joining us on nextTalk Radio with Mandy and Kim on AM630, the Word. You are not alone, trying to figure out how to parent in this digital world. We are here with practical solutions to help you. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Find our free video series and podcast at nexttalkorg. Are you ready for the nextTalk?
Transcribed by https://podium.page