Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Is nagging the marriage killer?

Not if my parents are any indication. They've been married thirty six years and not a day has passed without my mother nagging like she's making a commission every time she employs the phrase, "How many times do I have to tell you?"

I'm not recommending it as a course of action, only offering my own research to reflect upon as you read the Wall Street Journal's article on how nagging destroys marriages.

Babble's Stroller Derby blogger was up in arms about the piece, considering it a piece of shoddily-researched anti-woman drivel. I wouldn't go that far though I agree its not the most insightful piece of investigative journalism I've ever read, or even particularly useful. Of course, I'm coming at the subject after having recently interviewed a bunch of parenting experts about the perils of nagging your kids. Yep, nagging is now a big no-no in parenting, on par with (gasp) yelling, which in my neighborhood at least, is on par with smacking your kid upside the head.

My perspective on the issue is basically: what genius doesn't know that nagging is ineffective and annoying? No one - with the possible exception of my mother -- thinks that nagging is a positive activity to engage in. In other words, of course its a marriage killer and a one-way track to getting your kids to tune out. That's breaking news? It doesn't keep us from doing it anyway - and yes, by us I mean, for the most part mothers and wives, because I've never in my life met a man that nagged me. It boils down to we want to get shit done and the people we need to help do shit need a lot of freaking reminders.

So, nagging, like biting your fingernails, is bad. Try not to. And when you figure out how, drop me and the Wall Street Journal, a line.