I was traveling on a plane recently and heard the familiar pre-flight instructions advising passengers to secure their own oxygen mask before attempting to help children or others who may need help. Though I’ve heard that statement innumerable times, I heard it this time through a marriage filter.
So often we attempt to put the “oxygen mask” on our spouse before we put our own mask on. The oxygen mask represents anything we do to fix our spouse or make them better (usually to our advantage). While there’s nothing wrong with encouraging our spouse to be and do better, there is something wrong with us trying to help our spouse without first putting ourselves in position to help. We are most helpful to our spouse when we are actively working on bettering ourselves, growing spiritually, and being the best spouse we can be. If we’re not in the process of becoming a better spouse, we’re liable to be seen as an over-demanding hypocrite. Keep that in mind the next time you endeavor to help your spouse. Put your own oxygen mask own first then help your spouse.
Copyright © 2011 Kevin B. Bullard. All Rights Reserved. Permission granted to use and reproduce with proper source citation.