One of the most interesting aspects to marriage is listening to people talk about their marriages. Whether husbands or wives, one of the most common complaints is about the negativity of a spouse. Put simply, some people are just grumps. So, let's think about wives becoming grumps.

What I mean is that there comes a time in many lives when the negative takes over everything. A "grump" is a person who always tends toward the negative. Every situation gets a negative response.  A child brings home a good report card and the mom says "wow, I sure wish Bobby could do that well," rather than just complimenting the child who did well. When it rains, well, "it rains all the time." When it doesn't rain, "we never get any rain." When someone calls "it's been so long since you called" and when they don't call, well, "they never call."

Women tend to be grumps because they tend to exaggerate a lot in their use of language. If their husband does not call one day, then "he never calls me." If clothes are left out one day, then "he always leaves his clothes out." The use of "never" and "always" is false, of course, but she is not trying to be precise, she is expressing her feelings through exaggeration. Husbands hate this. Seriously. They hate it because there is no possible response. 

How serious is this problem? In early America, a woman could actually be imprisoned for being a grump. It was called "being a scold" and a man could bring his wife to trial on the charge of being a scold.

The whole grump problem must be solved. Think about a few things:

1. How often do you smile?
2. How often do you laugh?
3. How often do you "exaggerate" with "never" and "always" and such words?
4. Do your children come to you hopefully, or with worried expressions?
5. Does your husband look forward to talking with you, or does he wilt a little when you start talking?

A grump is a miserable person to live with. The excellent wife is never a grump. "She laughs at the time to come; she opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue." Pro. 31:25-26. 

Make a decision to stop being a grump, if you are one. If you are not, then decide you will not be one. 

Being a grump, and being an excellent wife, are two very different things. I know which one your family prefers.

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