Why Can’t I Get What I Want?

EV001104Why can’t I get what I want?  Maybe you’ve asked that question in marriage.  Maybe it was when your spouse was not helping around the house.  Maybe it was when you wanted to relax and your spouse wanted you to run an errand.  Maybe it was when your spouse wasn’t interested in sex, or was too interested in sex.  Whatever it was, you found yourself asking, “Why can’t I get what I want?”

According to the Rolling Stones, we can’t always get what we want.  We know this is true, but why?  Wouldn’t it be better if my spouse helped me when I needed it?  Wouldn’t it be better if my spouse saw I needed a break, and gave me the rest I deserve?  Wouldn’t it be better if my spouse realized my need (or lack of need) for sex and just worked with that?  Aren’t they supposed to do that?  Why can’t I get what I want?

Here are some simple answers to the question, “Why can’t I get what I want?”

  • You already get what you want…at least sometimes.  It’s really easy to forget this.  We can be like children saying, “I NEVER get what I want!”  But the truth is, we do get what we want more than we realize.
  • It would stunt your growth.  If we always got what we wanted, we would become more self-centered than we already are.  We would become more immature. The more we look to meet the needs of others, the more we grow and mature.
  • It would create a monster.  Getting everything you want doesn’t satisfy you.  Like sampling your favorite junk food, it just makes you want more.  You become like one of those movie monsters that grow so out of control it has to be nuked.  (That may sound a little over the top, but there are some spouses with their finger on the nuke button as we speak.)
  • What you want is not always best for you.  Like children who want ice cream for breakfast, not everything we want would be good for us, and sometimes our spouse can see that more clearly than we can.
  • You would never learn to be a winning team.  Just as team members must learn to share the ball if they’re going to win, spouses must learn to share getting what they want if they’re going to win as a couple.
  • You haven’t asked.  There are many times we don’t get what we want, because we’ve not asked for what we want.  We may hint at it or hope for it, but we don’t clearly ask for what we want.  Then, we get frustrated at our spouse for “denying” us what we want.  (I confess, I’m bad about this.)

Yes, there are times your spouse should try to help you get what you want, and they are probably already doing this more than you realize.  But, you can’t manipulate your spouse into giving you what you want.  This causes more problems than it’s worth.  Rather than focusing on getting your spouse to give you what you want, you need to focus on helping your spouse get what they want.

Right about now, I can hear someone saying, “But what about me?”

Well, that’s the funny thing.  When you focus your efforts on helping your spouse get what they want, they have more love, respect, and appreciation for you.  Consequently, they spend more of their efforts trying to help you get what you want.  In short…

Everybody wins a lot when each is willing to lose a little.

So what about it?  What’s one simple thing you could do to help your spouse get what they want?

Be generous and share your ideas with others by leaving a comment.

Copyright © 2014 Bret Legg


7 thoughts on “Why Can’t I Get What I Want?”

  1. I often assume that I know what he is thinking and what he wants more than he does. That is not respectful. I could start by respecting him more and giving him his own voice without my trying to figure everything out and give him what I think he wants or needs before he has had a chance to speak for himself. I have been wrong with my assumptions a time or two.


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