Uhh…Did I Ask For Your Opinion? How To Handle Unsolicited Marriage Advice From Auntie and nem…
By Aiyana Ma’at
People pay me for my advice. I give balanced, critical, trained advice as a living and yet I do not give advice unless it is asked for. It’s funny though, sometimes I can be out hanging with my some of my girlfriends and we’re talking about a really juicy sensitive topic that someone is dealing with and some of my friends will look at me like…Ok, so what do you have to say about this issue Aiyana?
And, that’s how it’s supposed to be. People should give their 2 cents when they get a cue that it’s wanted. It should be that folks don’t give their opinions unless they are asked to do so–especially when it comes to your marriage. And, my friends can count on me to be non-judgemental (I pride myself on that one…smile) and there for them when we’re dealing with whatever the latest and greatest issue is.
Now, that’s how it should be. Your mama, grandma, auntie, co-worker, cousin,–you get the point–don’t necessarily know that. So, you’ll find that as you travel your marriage path that you will get lots of unsolicited (and oftentimes wrong) advice from well meaning folk. Not to mention the advice that you get that is right but is given at the wrong time—therefore that makes it WRONG.
If you are the one going around shelling out quotes, proverbs, and precious pearls of wisdom when nobody asked you here is some advice for you (you clicked on the article so I consider it solicited! Lol.)
- Close your mouth and take some of your own advice once in a while cause’ you know you don’t.
- Spend some “me time” with yourself and figure out why you feel the need to present yourself as the all wise one so much (hint: It has more to do with what you don’t know rather than what you think you do know.)
- Imagine you having to deal with yourself. Really visualize it. You would get on your own last nerve wouldn’t you?
Bottom Line? Just stop it!
If you are the one on the receiving end of all of this unwanted wisdom it’s real simple for you:
Remember that YOU are the writer of your life story. So, people can give you opinions all day. What does that have to do with you? Nothing.
Learn to just smile and say absolutely nothing when someone serves up some advice you didn’t ask for. Really. Try it. Just smile and don’t say nothing. They won’t know what to do with that.
Lastly, stop going around telling all of your business to anybody who will listen. Why does your hairdresser know about the fight you had with your husband last night? And, then you get mad when she tells her Aunt who tells her best friend Ms. Mabel. And when you see Ms. Mabel at church next week she wants you to come “sit down for a second”, translation an hour. And you wonder why. Hey, you started it. Keep your business to yourself.
Aiyana Ma’at is the wife of Ayize Ma’at, mom of 4, and co-founder and owner of this website, BlackLoveAndMarriage.com, as well as PurposePusher.com. Aiyana is a Seeker, Motivator, Risk Taker, Explorer, & Overcomer. She is a self-described PurposePusher and does her best to live her life with self-awareness and intention. Some of her official titles include licensed psycho-therapist, certified marriage educator & relationship coach and speaker. She is clear that a part of the call on her life is to help bring insight and awareness to others so that they can “get out of their own way” and create the lives they want to have.
So true! I remember when I first got married and all the cousins with cheating, non educated husbands had all the advise in the world. I even had one older female cousin to tell me to let that man run in the streets with any woman he wants, but he will always come home!! And my thoughts to her was, yeah and the same strain of HIV those women in the street have will be the same one she will have in the future if she continue to stay in that marriage. Silly women will never learn.
There's not much advice I would take from family regarding marriage, kids, money or anything else. My auntie and nem lived in miserable marriages, and then divorced. It's my generation that's holding down successfull marriages. My husband and I had to chart a new path when we married, so that we would have something decent for ourselves. We fellowship with those in the family who are married and maintaining stable family lives.
We don't let anybody "put their mouth on" our marriage. If we allow anyone access to our lives they must understand, this is our party, they're just at it.
Yes yes and yes again! Thankfully I don't have meddling aunts (I have more uncles than aunts anyways) and we don't get too much unsolicited advice from our parents. I never wanted to be that person, but my friends always ASK for my advice, THEN I give it.
My recent post Wedding Wednesday: My Sister Got Married
I know right!!! If I didn't ask you then don't tell me. Especially when your relationship is all jacked up.