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Anonymous

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Gossip in the Family
« on: May 29, 2014, 01:17:20 PM »
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  • I'm trying to not gossip.  Not to speak it or listen to it.  However as I've tried to stop, I've realized that my DH does it all the time.  He talks about people he knows and people he doesn't know and speculates about them or tells the private details of their lives.  

    I'm not trying to attack him or judge him. I'm just as guilty of doing the same thing and I've done it my entire life. What I need to know is how to respond when he's doing this because he's my husband and I don't want to appear to be disrespectful by either ignoring him, or correcting him or changing the subject.  Which is some of the advice given in various places on how to deal with gossip.

    He's not  receptive to me talking to him about this right now ... he doesn't see that there's anything wrong with his conversation.

    Does anyone have any advice about this, any personal experience in handling this issue?


    Offline MariaCatherine

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #1 on: May 29, 2014, 02:33:58 PM »
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  • Could you voice some possible excuses for the seemingly bad behavior your husband points out in these people, without going to the extreme of siding with them?  I realize that won't necessarily stop him from telling you personal details about people.  Could it be that he's trying to protect you?
    What return shall I make to the Lord for all the things that He hath given unto me?


    Offline soulguard

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #2 on: May 29, 2014, 03:46:50 PM »
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  • Hes just immature. He should love God more than his urge to appear better than others. Another pharisee. All doctrine and no practice.

    Anonymous

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #3 on: May 29, 2014, 04:56:48 PM »
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  • Quote from: Guest
    I'm trying to not gossip.  Not to speak it or listen to it.  However as I've tried to stop, I've realized that my DH does it all the time.  He talks about people he knows and people he doesn't know and speculates about them or tells the private details of their lives.  

    I'm not trying to attack him or judge him. I'm just as guilty of doing the same thing and I've done it my entire life. What I need to know is how to respond when he's doing this because he's my husband and I don't want to appear to be disrespectful by either ignoring him, or correcting him or changing the subject.  Which is some of the advice given in various places on how to deal with gossip.

    He's not  receptive to me talking to him about this right now ... he doesn't see that there's anything wrong with his conversation.

    Does anyone have any advice about this, any personal experience in handling this issue?



    My parish priest told me that you could talk to your spouse about things like this- as long as only it was your spouse.

    Anonymous

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #4 on: May 29, 2014, 06:05:59 PM »
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  • I would also like to know the best way to tackle this. I believe my  husband learned  this trait from his mother who shares it.  I don't suppose it is what one would really call 'gossip'- more like the need to put other people down and make themselves feel superior. I was raised to give people the benefit of the doubt, and to try to be kind. Evidently not all people were. (no surprise there, I'm sure.)

    Some examples:

    You go to a home where things are untidy. My first response if someone mentions it is "Maybe they've been sick, or busy, maybe the kids have been a handful lately, etc."  They say  " What a filthy house! How can they live in that pigsty?" etc.

    Another example: You see a very large, obese person. I think " They must have bad health, and they have problems with mobility. I feel sympathy for them."  They say " What a lazy pig! If I looked like that I wouldn't show my face in public."

    or if someone seems brusque: I think:"Wow, he must be having a bad day. Maybe something really bad is going on behind the scenes, I should pray for him. They say " That guy is such a jerk. I hope he gets whats coming to him!". etc

    You get the idea.

    It is most often about people they feel they are not so intelligent as they are. They go on and on about whatever "that stupid idiot" did that bugged them.

    I find it to be uncharitable, a sign of insecurity, a need to feel superior to another person,  and just plain mean.

    How do you make it known to your spouse and in-laws that this is not Christian behavior? If I come out and say so, it is bound to bring on  bad feelings. It makes me feel bad and kind of angry when I hear them badmouthing everyone all the time. I can imagine what is said behind my back.

    Advice?

    1MT



    Anonymous

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #5 on: May 29, 2014, 06:10:23 PM »
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  • I didn't mean to piggyback on the OP with my post above.  Since the situations kind of share a common thread, I thought I would add it. 1MT

    Anonymous

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #6 on: May 29, 2014, 06:31:02 PM »
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  • I've been thinking about this sort of thing and I think that usually the best thing to do is preach by example. I think in the Scriptures it says to rebuke once or twice, but beyond that if a person keeps sinning it is not your fault.

    So what I would do if I were in your position - though to be fair I can't possibly know the exact details of your position so maybe my advice won't be helpful - is that when your spouse does this to just ignore it completely. Like when he says something like "so and so did this; so and so has this fault" just to ignore it completely like it wasn't even said, and if he asks you to comment on it be as unresponsive/dismissive as possible without being rude, just showing that you have no interest in such conversation. I don't think you should feel compelled to keep up ungodly conversation to your own and your husband's detriment. If he insists on this kind of conversation, again, my advice would be to just try and seem as uninterested as possible without being cold to him. In fact, what you could do is when ever he detracts from another person respond by praising them, so that when ever he thinks of a reason to insult somebody you can think of a reason to praise them.

     The first couple of times he does this in the future you can very gently say, "you shouldn't ought to detract from the character of others, it's ungodly and encourages pride", or something to that effect, but if he just continues to do it habitually you shouldn't rebuke him further, just do whatever you can to ignore/dismiss such conversations and pray for him privately.

    You could also ask a priest for advice if you haven't already. That would probably be the best thing to do to be honest.

    God bless,

    Anonymous

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #7 on: May 29, 2014, 08:51:30 PM »
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  • You have been given a lot of good advice!  May I add this:  If he is doing this on the job, not good.  If he talks to much with others, bad company is not good at all!!  If he needs to have an outlet, and we all do after work.  I listen to my husband who has a hospital job and I can tell you, that can be the pits to say the least.  For those in his boots you know.  BUT your husband needs good advice.  Sometimes I will add, pray for them!  Some times we might sound like the pharasee who says, oh, thank God I am not like so and so.  But yes, you take the good advice on this forum and answer your husband to let him know that you are listening and then add your part,  what can we do?  We pray, we remember them at Mass.  Perfection is not here but heaven.  Ask your angel to direct you before you speak.  


    Anonymous

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #8 on: May 30, 2014, 12:47:06 AM »
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  • I would answer the OP and 1MT differently.

    1MT, I would encourage your husband to give the benefit of the doubt more often. Also, give suggestions as to what he could do to improve the other person's situation. If he complains they live "like pigs", ask him if you or he can offer to help them on occassion. Perhaps they are overwhelmed. If he complains someone is acting like a jerk, encourage him to be extra nice when he sees that person. He (or you as a good example) should do what he can to get involved so that they're not just a stranger to be criticized. That said, I've no doubt this pattern of behavior would be very difficult to break and will require continued patience on your part.

    OP, I really think it depends on the nature of these comments. Often talking with your spouse is an extension of working things out in your own head. My husband and I discuss all sorts of anecdotal evidence from people we know -- both good things and bad things -- as we work through our own parenting decisions. We also share specific information about individuals when one or the other of us is very likely to be asked for advice from that person in order to work together to come to the best advice to give.

    My suggestion (after discussing this with my husband, of course  :wink:) is to only attempt to change his behavior or divert the conversation if there's really no purpose to the conversation. Consider that he wants to hear your point of view on the things that affect his life.

    If and when the conversation turns toward speculating or presuming motives, etc., do take the opportunity to gently suggest that he doesn't really know these things and there's no need to stray from the facts that are pertinent to the conversation. Be sweet and don't lecture him and he'll be more likely to either agree with you or just move past the topic.

    Offline crossbro

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #9 on: May 30, 2014, 12:53:27 AM »
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  • If you become a vegetarian does that mean he has to become one too ?

    Offline poche

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    Gossip in the Family
    « Reply #10 on: May 30, 2014, 12:57:33 AM »
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  • Quote from: crossbro

    If you become a vegetarian does that mean he has to become one too ?

    That would probably depend on who prepares the food in the house.
     :laugh1: :laugh1: :laugh1:


     

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