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Men Who Don't Vacuum

Does it drive you bonkers that your husband never runs the vacuum cleaner just because it needs doing?

Are you annoyed to tears when he steps over a bit of sock lint on the floor without picking it up?

Do you start pondering divorce when he sticks flowers in a vase without first dusting out the inside of the vase?

Are you furious if your husband brings home the wrong brand of diced tomatoes when he does the grocery shopping?

Do you feel mistreated when he walks past a full and stinky trash can in the kitchen without emptying it?

Do you grind your teeth when he spends the whole weekend at home without doing anything about the leaky toilet in the guest bathroom?

Have you ever thought about why some of these failures seem laughable and others raise your ire?

Would you consider moving some of them into the other category so you could enjoy being married to him, even if it sticks you with almost as many to-do items as you would have without love in your life?


As a husband who does some of that stuff I know how hard it can be to live with me, but I also know that I don't do these things on purpose. I try to clean around the house when I can as well as other chores.

The thing is I don't do these things on purpose. I just don't always notice them because I get caught up on other stuff. The key for me is to let go of expecting my wife to be a certain way and just accept her as she is. If she forgets something I try not to make a big deal out of it and just remind her.

We've been married 5 years. I think we've been doing pretty good.

Congratulations on your first five years, Karl! I wish you many more. Sounds like you have figured out two of the big keys to loving each other for life a lot sooner than I did: (1) recognize that you and she are caught up in and paying attention to different things, not intentionally failing each other, and (2) let go of expecting her to be anyone other than who she is. My shorthand for these is Assume Love and Expect Love.

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Patty Newbold is a widow who got it right the second time...

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