Dear Crabby, Do I always have to agree with my wife?

Dear Crabby,

My wife and I do not always agree on everything and I feel guilty about that.  Do you think that men always need to agree with their wives, or is it alright to have differing opinions?

Sincerely, Guy Youngman

Dear Mr. Youngman,

I could save us all a lot of time and grief by simply saying “YES!”  But, I will elaborate and use examples from my past as that appears to be what people enjoy from me. I can think of a few times that Mrs. Crabby and I did not see totally eye to eye on things. I hope you can hear the sarcasm in that statement as I write these words. The truth is that we often see things from our own point of view and therefore will disagree on the conclusions. However, I will say that this used to cause major arguments and problems in our younger years, but now we have learned that it isn’t the end of the world and we can just work though it – as long as we conclude that Mrs. Crabby was right. My example comes from many moons ago. I had just gotten a bonus at work and I mentioned to Mrs. Crabby that I would like to get a boat someday. Of course, I mentioned this in the midst of many things going on around us and I believe Mrs. Crabby was even upset with me about something else at the time. Her response was a “Fine, whatever” kind of thing.  I took this to be complete consensus and proceeded to look for my new boat.  A few days later, I found the one I wanted and bought it on the spot. As I pulled in the driveway with my new toy I soon learned that her “Fine, whatever” was not a “Yes, let’s do that.” She didn’t say much other than that she hoped I enjoyed my new boat enough to sleep on it. My eyes lit up – I hadn’t thought about that fun option. But it didn’t take long for me to realize that that was her equivalent to me sleeping on the couch. A few days after that, I came home from work and as I opened the door to our house, I noticed dust and broken drywall everywhere. In the middle of all the mess was Mrs. Crabby with a sledge hammer in her hand and goggles on her face. Shocked, I said, “What is going on in here?”  She quickly replied that she had mentioned a while back that she wanted a new kitchen and that I had mumbled something like “Sure, okay.”  She explained that since I had taken a “Fine, whatever” to mean “yes” that certainly a “Sure, okay” meant that as well. So she decided to get the hard part over with and started clearing out the old stuff for me. Normally something like this would bring financial and emotional stress into the marriage and cause couples to fight. But we found a mutual agreement that she came up with. I sold the boat and completed the new kitchen she had wanted! So remember two things: women don’t get mad, they get even! And, couples can always find the common ground, as long as it is where she was standing to begin with! Good luck and let me know how it goes!

Sincerely, Dear Crabby

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Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at

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