> Current Issues > Dear Emuna

My Boring Husband

April 15, 2018 | by Emuna Braverman

Every day is the same and I’m going out of my mind.

Dear Emuna,

I love my husband. He is a good father, a responsible provider and a pleasant companion. I’m just bored. Every day is the same. Everything we talk about is the same. Everything we do is the same. There’s just no excitement left and it makes me not want to be with him. It sounds trivial but I’m going out of my mind. Help!

Same Old, Same Old

Dear Same Old, Same Old,

I think you speak for many people. I think a lot of our days seem similar to the one before, a lot of our activities repetitive. What confuses me about your letter is that you seem to blame your husband for it. Why is it his fault?

If you don’t like it, you are certainly capable of fixing it. If you want to engage in different activities, suggest them, set them up, make them happen. If you want different conversations, change the topic. Read and learn so you can bring new ideas to the table. If you want your days to be different, create adventures for you and your spouse.

I think boredom is a risk in all relationships and all lives but I don’t think our partner is to blame. We all recognize that when our children complain of being bored it’s reflective of a lack of creativity and a certain passivity. They are looking for someone to entertain them. If we refuse to indulge them and force them to fall back on their own resources, they frequently come up with new games, plays, projects and all sorts of ways to pass the time.

It sounds to me like the child in you wants your husband to entertain you but the adult in you should recognize that you are not only capable of taking the initiative but since you’re the one who’s bored you are the one who’s responsible for taking the initiative. The Almighty has given us an amazing, awesome world – full of new things to see and learn around everyone corner. If we are bored, it’s up to us to do something about it.

The Social Climber

Dear Emuna,

I have friend who I truly love. We’ve shared many life experiences together. We’ve laughed and we’ve cried and we have each other’s backs. I’m grateful to have her in my life and I know I can always count on her. There’s just one thing that really bothers me about her that I can’t seem to get past. She is a social climber. She likes to be around wealthy, prominent people (I am not one) and not only does she name drop but sometimes she’ll wait to respond to my invitations to see if she gets a better one from them or she’ll choose them to hang out with even though I’m the one she calls to discuss her serious issues with. I know that you have to take the good with the bad and that no one’s perfect and that good friend are hard to find… but it really bothers me and I can’t seem to get past it. Do you have any tools or tips?

Social Outcast

Dear Outcast,

I think you know the answer yourself. You actually alluded to it in your question. No one is perfect and no one can fill all of our needs. It is an unfair pressure to put on any relationship, a marriage or a friendship. It sounds like you get a lot of good from this relationship, a lot of support and pleasure. It would be foolish to give that up just because in one area your friend displays some superficiality. (Don’t we all?)

Not only are good friends hard to find as you point out but they are also precious. If you have one, don’t be so quick to throw it away. Enjoy the good and ignore the rest (just like you want her to do with you).

Additionally, as the Talmud points out, it is frequently the qualities we don’t like in ourselves that bother us most in others. I don’t know you but maybe you have a little social climbing in your personality. Maybe you also enjoy the company of the rich and powerful. Maybe you’re embarrassed by these weaknesses in your own psyche and that’s why they bother them so much in her. It’s always a good idea to focus less on having the perfect friend and more on being the perfect friend. I can assure you that if you redirect your focus and energies, her flaws will fade and you will enjoy the relationship a lot more.

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