He Broke Their One Marriage Rule Because He Wife Refused to Accept Criticism from Him

A man recently asked if he was wrong for breaking a rule, he has with his wife. They both agreed to compliment each other before making criticism, but he broke the rule after she served him cookies with raisins.

They Had A Marriage Rule

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The man, Pete, and his wife, Eve, had a special rule in their house that aimed to maintain a more harmonious relationship and reduce the number of arguments. 

It was pretty simple, and the husband explained, “The agreement says that if one of us has a complaint or ‘suggestion’ that we want to voice to the other person, we have to preface it with at least two compliments.”

It Normally Worked Well

Resolve Conflicts Constructively
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So, let’s say Pete wanted to talk to his wife about her leaving her clothes lying around the bedroom; he would first have to say two nice things about her, like how he liked her new shirt or how he appreciated her doing the laundry last week.

This helped to soften the blow of the eventual complaint, in this instance, about her untidiness.

She Always Added Raisins

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The man recalled, “Yesterday, Eve was making some oatmeal chocolate chip raisin cookies, which she often makes by stirring together oatmeal cookie mix with chocolate chips and raisins.”

The thing was, he didn’t like raisins at all. He’d tried to tell her in the past, but his wife never seemed to get the hints. Despite his obvious aversion, she added raisins every time.

He Initially Followed The Rule

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On this particular day, as Eve got out the cookie mix and the other ingredients, Pete considered their special rule. 

He began by saying two nice things. He told Eve how sweet it was of her to make cookies for the family. He also complimented her on how well she baked them, making sure they were just the right amount of soft and crispy. 

He Requested Some Cookies Without Raisins

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Then, abiding by the rules of their agreement, he told her about his issue with the raisins. He asked if she could please make a few cookies without them. The raisins were added later anyway, so it shouldn’t be too much trouble.

Eve nodded at this, so Pete thought she had understood and would comply. 

She Ignored His Request

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But when the cookies were baked and ready to eat, they all had raisins. When the husband asked his wife which ones were without raisins, she looked at him, confused. 

He recounted, “Since I had given her two compliments on the cookies but only one complaint, she thought I enjoyed her raisin cookies more than I disliked them, so she continued with the original recipe. She said they couldn’t be bad if 2/3 of my comments about them were positive.”

The Husband Was Shocked

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The man didn’t know what to say. He struggled to find words but wanted to express his feelings. He started to speak, but sensing negativity, Eve interrupted him, reminding him of their rule. 

Frustrated by his wife’s apparent refusal to ‘hear’ him properly, he became annoyed. He immediately said he just couldn’t fake it anymore. He told her he couldn’t stand the cookies with raisins, and eating them was unbearable. 

He Broke The Rule

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By confessing that his feelings about the cookies were almost entirely negative, he didn’t follow their rule on this occasion and just told the unvarnished truth.

The man admitted, “I didn’t preface that comment with two positives, so I broke our agreement here.” But, given her stubbornness and their miscommunication, he felt justified.

Was He Driven To It?

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At first, Pete felt his words were fair. But his friends told him that he should be grateful that Eve baked at all. They said he was ungrateful and shouldn’t have broken their rule. 

With his wife still really mad at him, the man was left wondering: Was he wrong to express his feelings after they were ignored, even if it broke the rule? He decided to ask the internet for advice on the matter.

People Responded

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One user stated, “If your agreement doesn’t lead to clear communication and resolution, it’s a bunk agreement. Your wife is weaponizing your agreement to essentially shut you up.”

Another person agreed, saying, “Those compliments would mean nothing to me if I knew they were forced so my husband could criticize something. It’s way healthier to compliment when you like something and have an honest discussion when something bothers you.”

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