Your Wife Will Change

Last spring our mission team members and I visited the International Mission Board Headquarters in Richmond, Virginia, I rode in a car with a brother in his early fifties. He told me a sad story about what had happened to him that morning. He shared that as he and his wife entered middle age it was harder for him to win an argument with her. His wife was giving him a ride that morning to church where members were meeting to carpool to the airport. But as they left their house they found heavy rush hour traffic. They decided to take a shortcut but differed in opinion as to which was faster. Her husband, who had more experience in avoiding heavy traffic, suggested one route but his wife disagreed. She gave a long list of reasons why her suggestion was shorter. Her argument was so convincing that he gave in against his better judgment. A defeat for the husband!

But as he expected, the route she took was jammed with traffic, so they had to go directly to the airport instead of meeting the others at church. An obvious victory for the husband! He was somewhat expecting an admission from his wife that she had been wrong. But as they continued talking he noticed that the topic had subtly changed from choosing a shortcut to what had happened that morning when they left their house. The conclusion was that they were late not because she had chosen a wrong route but because he had not been ready in time. Another defeat for the husband! And he told me with a deep sigh, “Actually, it was not my fault that we didn’t leave the house earlier, but I realized that after she dropped me off. There is no way to win an argument with your wife.”

In middle age, male hormone levels decrease in men but increase in women. So women become more aggressive and independent and men less so. When they are young, husbands want to go out and spend time with their friends whereas wives want their husbands to stay home and spend time with them. In middle age, the situation reverses itself; wives want to go out and spend time with their friends while husbands want their wives to stay home and spend time with them.

So let me warn young husbands: your wives may not be as nice as they are now when they reach middle age. Be nice to your wives now so that you don’t get the cold shoulder when you are older. And I beseech you, middle aged wives: have mercy on your husbands, even if your husbands were unkind to you when you were young.

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