Is Your Spouse Taking You For Granted?

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By Caleb & Verlynda Simonyi-Gindele and Verlynda Simonyi-Gindele. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
Is your spouse taking you for granted? Well, you may be expecting us to pick on that nasty spouse of yours: but as we often point out, the only person you can change is yourself. Today we’re going to look at how a people pleasing personality or a codependent personality can lead you to feeling very much taken for granted, and what to do about it. There can be a number of reasons why you may be feeling that you are being taken for granted by your spouse. I think all of us go through at least brief phases in our marriage when we feel that way. Often this comes up around the issues of fair distribution of household labour or emotional labour. If you think that this may be a shorter-term imbalance, those two episodes/articles are definitely worth checking out. On the other hand, feeling taken for granted may be due to relationship or personality dynamics in yourself. That’s what we want to consider today as another possible explanation for how you arrived at a place where you’re feeling very taken for granted. First of all, we want to consider marital roles and then two personality dynamics: the people pleasing personality and codependency as two possible explanations. Codependency and people-pleasing are two tendencies that can make you more easily taken for granted by others, including your spouse. These tendencies are not the same thing. Someone is usually one or the other, though there are times when a person displays some of the attitudes of both codependency and people-pleasing.[1] Roles in Marriage Sometimes couples have a more traditional view of marriage: the husband makes a lot of the decisions and the wife is supportive of the husband. This isn't a bad thing as long as it's agreeable to both spouses, but you want to be sure that the arrangement is considered to be fair by both spouses, and especially that the wife's needs and wants are not overlooked in the relationship. The dominant vision of marriage in the twentieth-century was created during the interwar years. Before this period, husbands and wives were seen to represent complementary but separate natures and existences. Today, couples with a less traditional view of marriage generally negotiate household arrangements in a more "fluid and individualized fashion" than their parents’ generation had.”[2] While old norms were based on separate spheres and an elevated appreciation for female self-sacrifice, modern norms are based on comradeship and self-expression.[3] For example, it's more common in modern marriages for the wife to contribute financially to the family than it was in previous generations.[4] A woman’s role in marriage was more set with the old norms, whereas women who adopt more modern norms have more expectations to manage than men because of the way things have changed. They need to "mediate tensions between experimentation and stability--between the old norms based on separate spheres and female self-sacrifice and new norms of comradeship and self-expression” in order to find a healthy balance.[5] In marriages with a more traditional view of the husband and wife role, it can be easy to set up the expectation that the wife will always be willing to sacrifice her own needs and wants for those of her husband, and will always be supportive of what he does at the expense of her own needs and wants. Having a traditional model certainly doesn’t always lead to the wife feeling taken for granted. But this model does set the stage for that possibility. In any marriage, regardless of whether or not the wife is working or not, it's important for there to be space for her own individual self-expression, as well as room to connect to one another as peers. This requires creating space for one another's thoughts and feelings. For husbands, it means not dominating or controlling your wife and allowing her space to have her own voice. The People Pleasing Personality A brief definition of a people pleasing personality is...

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