What Causes Offense?

In an episode of Boston Legal, Alan Shore and Denny Crane are on opposite sides in a case when a town wants to succeed from the United States. Denny says, ‘The idea of a place succeeding from the union deeply offends me.’ What’s more he can’t understand that his best friend doesn’t get that. ‘Which means you don’t know me,’ Denny says.

His argument was if you don’t know what offends the person you’re close to, then how can you really claim to know them? It’s even more relevant in marriage than it is in friendship. So, let me ask – do you know what things in the world offend your spouse? To bring it even closer to home, do you know what things you do that offend him or her. Does he or she know what things offend you?

In another scene Alan says to Jerry ‘I never thought I was one to put work before friendship, but it seems I am.’ As you know I’m not the gardener in this marriage, Mick is, but I love to enjoy the fruits of his labors. Still I could relate to Jerry’s reply to Alan. ‘Friendships are a little like a back yard garden. We plan to tend to them but always put them off to next week.’ Sadly that is true not only of friendships but of marriage. Too often we don’t tend our marriages by spending time together and appreciating the qualities of our partner.

Marriage, like any other worth while activity, needs to be worked at. Have you complimented your spouse today and told them how much they mean to you? Have you demonstrated that by your actions?

At present, Mick has gone in to buy an updated computer program so he can help me update my website with photos from the book launch. He plans to install it on his computer and work on it there, so it doesn’t interfere with me working, because yesterday when we looked at it we realized it was going to take way longer than expected. This would effectively stop me from doing other work I needed to. I don’t ask him to do this. It was all his idea. But boy, did I let him know how much I appreciate it!

At the another point Alan says, ‘Why don’t people take more time to be with those they love?’ Good question. That’s one of the things I like about Boston Legal – the insightful one liners. It finished here last week. I’m going to miss that show. It’s one Mick and I both love watching. In our marriages we all need to make time to be with those we love and enjoy just being together.

Please visit these related blogs

Reflections on a Weekend

Creating a Date Night

That Extra Ingredient

Marriage Is