How To (Finally) Get Your Husband To Listen To You

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Married life: how to get your husband to listen to you
Sometimes, you have to treat your husband like one of the kids and apply some behavior modification.

2. Focus on one behavior to modify. Don't jump ahead of yourself. Patience is everything. Remember, you're modifying behavior like you would with a child. As you focus on one problem and tell your spouse what it is, make sure to use reinforcement techniques. Some examples are verbal praise and punishment-oriented techniques, like, "I'm looking forward to you helping me with the dishes today, but if you don't get around to it, then I guess we won't have any clean plates for tomorrow's dinner. Where would you like to go out to eat? I know of an expensive new restaurant I've been wanting to dine at." This will probably get him to think of the pros and cons of helping you. 

3. Offer incentives for compliance. Ask him for his advice on what incentives he would be interested in. Remember to stick to one problem for now. Don't set yourself up to fail.

4. Follow through on the consequences, and don't give in. If he doesn't help you with the dishes, then the dishes will just have to be dirty until he helps. This could go on for a day, a few days, even weeks. Don't budge; set precedents. Remember, if you give in then he will know how far he can push you next time. I promise you there will be a next time, unfortunately. If you give in and do the dishes it will be very difficult for you to modify his behavior

5. Provide positive reinforcement. Give him playful reminders and prompts. Encourage him to think of everything as a rewarding and joyous experience. Don't nag him! Behavior modification is not about nagging. It's about clear expectations, friendly prompts and reminders, rewards and consequences.

Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Shelley Skas

Counselor/Therapist

Shelley Skas MA LCPC

Location: Orland park, IL
Credentials: LCPC, NCC
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