Age-Old Marriage Advice from the Maha Rushie

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RUSH: Let’s go to Tom in Bar Harbor, Maine. Great to have you, sir. Glad you waited.

CALLER: Hi, Maha Rushie. My thoughts and prayers are with you. I have an Open Line Friday question for you.

RUSH: Okay.

CALLER: Listening for a long time. I was home eating a tuna sandwich and decided to call your number. I got through, and I was wondering, do you eat lunch during this 12 to 3 time? That’s the small question. But the more important one, if you would answer it, is about 20 years ago, you suggested to us all — in one of the great nuggets of advice that you give — that when you are looking to get something from your wife, argue the inverse of it. And I’m just wondering if you could continue to guide us on that subject.

RUSH: Okay. The first question, do I eat lunch during the show? No, I don’t. That would be irresponsible, unprofessional, and it would be impossible. It would lead to belching and a number of things. It would not be cool, it would not be good. So, no, I wouldn’t even try it. I mean, at most, you know, I might at the top of the hour go in and have a couple bites of a protein bar, but no. Now, you have to refresh my memory here, give me more. You said I was giving advice to men to argue the opposite of what they want when either arguing with or talking with their wives?

CALLER: Talking with, yeah, to argue the inverse of it so as to achieve getting what you actually want. Now, I, at the time that you gave that advice was, you know, 20 or 25 years younger, and I was very cautious about doing it, I was tentative about doing it. I’m just wondering, you know, having met with a certain amount of success with that technique, what your thoughts are —

RUSH: Well, I’m trying to imagine an example of it.

CALLER: Oh, like acting, for example, like in your case you’d be golfing, in my case I’d be going on a bike ride, acting like I don’t want to go on the bike ride in order for her to insist that I do.

RUSH: Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh. Well, yeah. I’m 25 years older now. I have had 25 years’ additional experience since then. And you know what I’ve found? The answer to the question is find somebody that you can be honest with.

CALLER: Okay.

RUSH: But if you’re not with somebody you can be honest with, if you’re with somebody — by the way, and this is true — if you’re with somebody with whom you cannot be honest — and do not doubt me, that situation is a stunning reality far more than you might even think. There are some people — both sides of the aisle. This is not just strictly a female or male thing. There’s some people you just can’t be honest with. You just can’t. You are not expected to be.

So if you can’t find somebody to be honest with, then you do have to learn the manipulative tricks that will enable you to be able to do what you want without sneaking around and without any guilt attached to it. And the only way that can happen is by having her, in this case, urge you to do it or give you the okay to do it or acknowledge that it would be okay. Now, if the way to do that is to act like you don’t want to do it, how would that manifest?

Okay, here’s how it happens. Let’s say it’s Thursday and you get home and you’re in a bad mood, you’re in a rotten mood. She says, “What’s wrong with you?”

“Ah, these guys called me. They want to play golf Saturday, and it’s at a place I don’t want to play, I don’t want to do it.”

“Come on. Come on. If they’re nice enough to extend you the invitation, you should do it.”

“Really?”

“Yeah.” I’ve known that to work. I have known that to work. Be mad about a request that you got. Because the bottom line is, if it makes you unhappy, she may actually want you to do it.

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