Study shows the wife knows best

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Husband-and-wife journalists Bob Miller and Callie Clark Miller share the same small house (still), work in the same office (again) and somehow manage to cling to their sanity (barely). Older and wiser (she's wiser, he's just older), the Southeast Missourian sweethearts offer their views on everyday issues, told from two different perspectives.

HE SAID: Iowa State University researchers have made it official, apparently.

In marriages, wives wield more dominance than their husbands when decisions are to be made.

Researchers videotaped discussions and then coded the couple's behaviors according to a widely used interaction rating system.

A story I found on WebMD.com cites a study done on 72 married couples. The story quotes one of the researchers. She said, "It wasn't just that the women were bringing up issues that weren't being responded to, but that the men were actually going along with what they said. They were communicating more powerful messages, and men were responding to those messages by agreeing or giving in. There's been research that suggests that's a marker of a healthy marriage -- that men accept influence from their wives."

Well, of course, researcher woman, men accept the influence from their wives. Have you ever heard of the doghouse, lady? It's a very, very bad place to be. It's cold. And lonely on multiple levels.

The results showed, according to the report I found on WebMD, that women appeared to have more power during the discussions in the form of domineering and dominant behaviors than their husbands, regardless of who brought up the topic.

Well, duh!

Fellas, this is getting scary. You see, I thought maybe I was just one poor chap who was enchanted by his wife's cuteness and talent. I didn't know that my misgivings were becoming a nationwide phenomenon.

You see, guys, we're letting our ladies get away with the same garbage our dads used to get away with. And what do we have to show for it? Pretty blankets. A closet full of women's clothes. And, of course, room makeovers.

Yet we can't use the blankets because we can't get them dirty, our wives "never have anything to wear" and our disposable income is locked up in wainscot.

Of course, in my marriage, there is this reality: If things are left to me, they generally don't get done. But guys, we need to stand strong, get more stuff done and take more initiative in our marriages. We need to stand up to our women and become that which we were created to be: the head of the household.

What do you think honey? You think we could work on that?

SHE SAID: No, I don't think so.

HE SAID: OK.

SHE SAID: That's what I thought.

Bob Miller and Callie Clark Miller live to drive each other crazy. Contact them at bmiller@semissourian.com or cmiller@semissourian.com.

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