My husband recently had a small fit in our closet that had been building up for years. He was getting dressed and simply wanted to slide his t-shirt off the hanger. Unfortunately, the plastic hanger had a notch in it that prohibited his shirt from coming off in one swoop. He said, “I can’t take these hangers anymore!!!”
Here is the interesting thing – I never, ever noticed the notches in the hangers. When I buy hangers (which is a lot through the years), I simply choose the least expensive option. Apparently, our closet has 75% notched and 25% notch-free hangers. While I was clueless about this atrocity, he has been warring with this evilness for years and never mentioned it to me.
In my heart, I felt I had three options:
- Share my own annoyances. “Our closet stinks! I have nowhere to put my shoes.”
- Tell him to chillax. In the grand scheme of life, notched hangers are NOT a big deal.
- Find a solution and bless this sweet guy.
For the first fifteen years of our marriage, I would have chosen option 1 or 2 immediately. Our kids were small, and my temper was constantly short. I preferred to play the blame game over Candy Land anytime.
However, we thankfully were introduced to Grace Marriage and the concept of extending God’s grace and kindness to one another whenever possible. How could I apply that teaching to Greg’s closet drama? A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back. Proverbs 29:11
For his birthday, I purchased a large amount of royal blue hangers that are smooth as can be. I switched all of his clothes to these glorious new ones, and I believe the Earth stopped when he looked at his side of the closet and realized that he was the ultimate victor in the Hanger Battle.
I share this story with you because it’s funny, but also because it’s amazing what happens when we look for opportunities to love our spouse well. I could’ve brushed off his irritation (use two hands to get your shirt, Greg!), but instead, I chose to look for a way to bless him. Be a student of your spouse and be on the lookout for an annoyance they have that you could solve. Search online to find a possible hack for it. Fixing squeaky doors, discovering missing socks, or other small yet annoying things will make you a hero!
Remember to turn up your “Spidey Senses” in the next few weeks to look for ways to alleviate your spouse’s irritations. Please share with us your solutions so that we can collectively make our spouses’ worlds a better place to be.