Category Archives: Relationships

Your Words Have Changed My Marriage

This is from Michelle:

Dear Dr. Laura:

A few weeks ago, you had a caller who was contemplating divorce, because her husband wasn’t being nice and, in turn, she wasn’t being nice to her young son.  During the call, the little boy started crying and to calm him, she picked him up and he immediately stopped.  You told her of the power of a mother’s arms, and you told her that if she would just treat her husband the same way, he would melt just as her son did.  I thought about it, but forgot to do anything, and then I listened to the program again this week.  It was like you were personally talking to me.

I have been married for 16 years to a wonderful man who has been the sole financial provider for all that time so I can be an at-home mom to our teenage son and daughter.  While I always thank him for making this possible, unfortunately, my attitude has been ‘well, while you were at work all day, I had to deal with very important things like toddler meltdowns to teenager meltdowns.’  But your words changed all that.

Last night, my husband arrived home after a business trip to find out we have some unexpected, high medical bills for our son (he has special needs so, while this has happened before, now is a particularly hard financial time).  Instead of me attacking my husband and telling him I had to consent to all the tests which resulted in the bill, I took your advice.  I held him in my arms and said:  ‘This must be so hard for you, when you work so hard and you plan all the finances for our family, to have something so big come up when you don’t expect it.  I really appreciate you supporting this family, and I feel our kids are so blessed to have you as their dad.’

Dr. Laura, he melted, just as you said he would.  We went on to have a lovely night, planning how we would pay for this bill and then talking about other things.  If I had not taken your advice, we both would have been angry and sulking and it would have lasted for days.  You reminded me that even though my sweet husband is a big, strong provider, he still needs compassion and comfort.  How blessed am I that I could provide that for him.

Your words have changed my life and my marriage, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Keep helping people do the right thing.

Timeless Lessons from A Classic Story

I have watched film adaptations of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice in all its incarnations many, many times, and I recently watched the 2005 film version again. I love the film…no matter what criticisms may be about a portrayal or a performance. I clearly have a profound attraction to this work.

First and foremost, I love the utter regard the men had for women, which is evident from how they addressed them: “Miss…” (and their first names if they were single) or “Mrs….” (and their last names if they were married). Men bowed upon entering and leaving a woman’s presence, and women curtsied, even under unpleasant conditions. Flirting was ever-so-subtle: a look, a light “accidental” touch of a hand. A man romantically yearned for and tried to earn the affections of a woman. The sweetness of the regard for women in this era (particularly in upper and middle classes) was something to be admired, and something we now miss. There was a clear distinction between a “good” woman and an easy, loose woman or whore.

That distinction is gone today. Now, women put down good money for music that represents them as whores without pay. So many young men are casual about women and sex in general, and sex is a casual expectation almost always fulfilled.

Young women scoff at dignity and modesty as just stupid, prudish, sexist notions. They “shack up” with some dude without a marital commitment, yet expect the love and respect, fidelity and loyalty to exist without the spoken vows, only to be disappointed, hurt, and generally confused.

There was a recent film comedy, called “Ghosts of Girlfriends Past,” in which Matthew McConaughey (in a twist on Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”) got to go back into his life to see all his old girlfriends. There was one scene in the television ad for the movie which showed a seemingly endless dining table filled with hundreds of girls. Obviously, this was meant to show how shallow and manipulative he had been. To me, it just showed how many stupid girls there were (and are), “putting out” in a situation where there was clearly no respect, regard, or intent.

Men used to have to ask a woman’s dad for permission to “court” her, even when the woman was an adult! Now, all he has to do is show her a bedroom, back seat of a car, or a motel room, and the date is sealed. When men had to explain and express their intentions, they had to take the whole activity of dating much more seriously, as there were personal and social consequences to misleading a young lady. That reputation would annihilate any chances he might have had of marrying a good woman. He’d have to move states or provinces away. Now? That kind of rakish reputation makes girls/women want to line up to get some from an infamous entity.

The women’s revolution did not raise any consciousness worth elevating. It mostly diminished a woman’s sense of herself as special, minimized her value in the minds of men, put sex on the level of animals, created a nanny/baby-sitter/institutionalized day care financial boom (as women gave up the blessing of nurturing their own children), increased the use of abortion as a birth-control technique when an accidental pregnancy occurred with a guy who did not want fatherhood, created perpetually unhappy, angry, nasty wives, and made it very difficult for “nice girls” to be respected and cherished.

The last scene in Pride and Prejudice between the two now-married lovers has them discussing what she wants to be called by him when he is not using her given name. He suggests one name, and she rejects it sweetly, because it is what her father calls her. She then asks him what he will call her when he is angry. He, not being able to envision that situation, talks to her about always letting her know how lovingly important his happiness in wrapped up in her…forever…and he kisses her gently about her face as he says “Mrs. Darcy” over and over again. He gave her his heart, his life, his vows, and his name. And, in that era, giving a woman your name was the ultimate public and private statement of his total commitment to her, which makes that scene so moving to most of us, and infuriating to feminists who see that scene only as ripping away the woman’s identity.

I always cry at the end of the movie.

I cry also for what women have given up in exchange for wanting to have it all and not be subordinate to a man. I don’t know…I kinda think being on a pedestal is not subordinate. But what do I know? I’m only a recovered feminist.

Guys Brag About It

You’ve heard me talk about the differences between men and women (beyond the obvious physical ones).  One of my listeners has come smack up against the one where guys talk about their sexual prowess, and she now questions her own position that intimate details are private matters.  I have an answer for her:

Video: Guys Brag About It

Or watch other videos at youtube.com/DrLaura.

Read transcript here.

Married, But In Love with Ex

The whirlwind courtship is over and hopefully you settle into a great marriage.  Sometimes, however, you feel a “tug” from the past and think you’re in love with someone other than your spouse.  That’s what happened to one of my listeners, who wrote me, wondering if she had a problem:

Video: Married, But in Love with Ex

Or watch other videos at youtube.com/DrLaura.

Read transcript here

These Days, Most Women Are Pigs

I know the title of this blog may be shocking, but it’s all around us:  women (and even girls) who are sexually available and almost advertise that fact, and/or who are having sex by the third date when they barely know the guy.  If you want to be in a relationship for the long run, watch my video for why this “sex first” approach doesn’t lead to long-term caring:

Video: These Days, Most Women Are Pigs

Or watch other videos at youtube.com/DrLaura.

Read transcript here.