5 Reasons to Speak Positively about your Spouse at Work

This is a nice short piece explaining why it’s a good idea not to speak badly about your spouse at work, by Kevin Lowry at The Integrated Catholic Life.org.  Like me, Kevin is a convert.  Unlike me, he is devoting his life to evangelization and bringing Protestants into the Catholic faith.  Here’s his post from earlier this week:

“Sorry, I can’t do it tonight. The old ball and chain gets ticked off if I’m out late.”

How many times have we heard derogatory comments like this about spouses in the workplace? Even worse, snide remarks can give way to all-out whining: “My husband is such a jerk sometimes” or “My wife completely lost interest in me after we began having kids.”

Sacramental marriage should be in a different league than this, but we all live in a culture that hasn’t done the greatest job honoring the institution. In reality, we also know that even the strongest sacramental marriages sometimes go through serious challenges.

So what’s a good Catholic spouse to do?

Well, brace yourself for some good news. There are things we can do to honor our spouses in the workplace, and not be swayed by the cultural winds that sometime blow all around us. How about this one: always speak positively about your spouse at work. Why? Here are five reasons – and they just scratch the surface.

  1. Complaining about your spouse lacks class. Oh, maybe it’s fashionable to gripe and assume an attitude of superiority over your spouse. But does that make it right, and does it really make you happy? Probably not. Besides, if your spouse is such an idiot, what does that say about you, the person who made sacred vows to him or her?
  2. How you speak can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Have you ever noticed how good spouses make each other winners, and bad spouses make each other losers? Words matter. Speaking with honor is part of acting with honor – even when your spouse isn’t around.
  3. It protects your marriage. Even when things are rough at home, airing your grievances at work is the wrong venue. Co-workers who complain about their spouses open up an avenue for support from other co-workers, including those of the opposite sex. This can progress to inappropriate emotional intimacy, and worse.
  4. It’s good for your career. Many of the virtues that make for a faithful spouse also make for a great employee or co-worker. Besides, getting in the habit of speaking positively about others (including your spouse) behind their backs helps build a better culture for everyone in your workplace.
  5. It’s good for your co-workers. We are affected, for better or worse, by the attitudes and behaviors of our co-workers. Demonstrating charity and understanding towards our spouse might just inspire others to do the same.

We can’t single-handedly change the state of marriage in the world, but we can do our best to honor our own marriage vows – and our spouse. Speaking positively about our spouse in the workplace is a great way to improve our marriage, our workplace, and our walk with Christ.

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“Be a Man” Who Takes His Family to Church

Two years ago my father-in-law gave me the book “Be a Man” by Fr. Larry Richards. This is one of my favorite books and I have read it multiple times. Fr. Richards explains that to “be a man” we are to live as the son of God, be strong, be faithful and be committed. Essentially, we need to “grow a pair” (sorry), man-up and have a strong backbone.

Be a Man, by Fr. Larry Richards

Be a Man who is Holy

Fr. Richards explains that one of the ways we are to “Be a Man” is to be a man who is Holy. Since my vocation is marriage I have to do everything in my possible will to make it so my wife and children get to Heaven. Not only do I have to be a strong example, a good teacher, a loving husband and father but I also need to put my family in situations that allow them to grow and practice their faith. Well, today I blew it.

Typically, our family goes to 8am Sunday Mass and my wife and I have a pretty good system for getting our three kids awake, fed, everyone showered, dressed and out the door. Normally, we have a relaxing drive to Mass and I enjoy that time to reflect on where we are in the liturgical calendar and the day’s readings. But this morning I was moving a bit slow. Although I got the kids fed I decided to make them a bigger breakfast than normal and allowed them to watch a little bit of TV so I could read an interesting article I came across online. Meanwhile, my wife is doing her due diligence in our typical Sunday morning routine. Although the article I read was very interesting it was way too long and now it is getting late. So I gasped when I saw the clock and ran the kids upstairs to get them dressed while proceeding to  negotiate with them because I seemed to have selected clothing they all clearly disagreed with. So I left it to Sarah, my wife, to fix it so I can start to get ready. With less than 5 minutes before the start of Mass we jumped in the car and drove to Mass and walked in during the Gloria. We were late. But that is not exactly where I missed the mark. When we got to Mass my mind was not on the Mass and I assume that would be the same for my wife. It took us until after the homily to finally relax but I had no idea what just happened before.  I didn’t listen to the readings and my mind was wandering. Then I sat there in guilt because I was not a man who allowed my family to get to Mass on time and with clear minds.  This is not being a man who is Holy.

If I am to “Be a Man” who is to create the best situation for my family to practice and grow in their Catholic faith then I failed today. A strong man is someone who puts his whole family first and not himself. The article I read in the morning could have waited or I could have woken up 15 minutes earlier.

~Be a Man and God Bless.~