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Defence of significant other

Should a husband defend his wife against insults from his family?

Obviously input your own gender identities to answer the question.

For me it could be husband or wife

ashortbeauty 8 Mar 11

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I had to laugh. My late partner needed no defense from anyone and, in fact, she would be upset if anyone spoke for her.

When she was dying she sent out word that she wanted lots of people around her but no prayers and no tears. Her brother and his wife had to pay for a special visa to come see her (they are Iranian living in Vancouver BC). He questioned her decision to end her life and the wife wouldn' stop crying. She sent them away after less than 2 days (she lost her ability to speak but she still was able to communicate).

She had a super quick wit and mouth and she could defend me much better than I could ever defend her.

sorry you lost her - she sounds like quite the pistol !

@evergreen She was an assault weapon (but one that smiled). I know she would not like these comparisons. It was sometimes scary being with her (especially at the beach board walk at the ferry terminal. She would go after any and all people who had their dogs off-lease).

@obtusethevague1 She was 5' 0" (the zero was important to her) and weighed all of 100 lbs. But no body messed with her. She gave new meaning to the term 'stink-eye'.

@JackPedigo Another testament to "attitude being everything". By the way - I'm pointing it out not to correct , but for the laugh factor pf a typo ... notice your line about dogs off-LEASE ! Those owners need to renew their contracts !

@evergreen She would also compliment those with their dogs on leash. That got a lot of comments about how they feel about those irresponsible people.

She confronted a big guy with a big dog and told him to put his dog on a lease (which he had in his hand). I said "and who are you" and she replied "a concerned citizen". He said okay and pretended to bend over to attach the lease and she walked off. later I saw the guy looking at the ocean and the dog sans lease. He turned and saw her and I heard him say uh oh and he looked away so as to not make eye contact! It was actually funny to see a guy over a foot taller and twice the weight scared of her! It was always a mystery to me because she never raised her voice or said anything mean. She was just serious and smiled.


I defend my significant other against all comers. If we are out in a social situation I will defend her even if I don't agree with her points. HOWEVER, in private we will discuss the points that I felt was uncomfortable and or unseemly. But never in public will I show a fractured front, MY BABY MAY NOT BE RIGHT ALL THE TIME BUT SHE IS ALRIGHT WITH ME ALL THE TIME.

When it comes to, "insults" i will let her tell me when to step in. The reason for that is that I speak seven languages and somethings are a little more inflammatory than others in translation, so I have to be careful and not get too excited. I happen to be very, very good with my verbal interaction and my hands, so I have to be careful.

Seven languages is impressive. Kudos to you πŸ™‚


Reasonably defend, yes. If you’re significant other is patently wrong and causing issues, get them out of the situation and talk to them.


I think the relationship between spouses needs to be above all other relatioinships. If you don't put your spouse first you are on the way out, IMHO. I had a disagreement with my former BIL. He is a bully and decided I wasn't pulling my weight. At the time the ex was in Korea, I was essentially a single parent of 3 small girls, the youngest a nursing infant. But when I asked the inlaws for help I was weak and needy. They replied "that's the way he is" and blew me off. The ex when he heard of it only said "he wasn't there, he couldn't judge." That is only part of the reaons he's now an ex.


Yes. No family member should insult your spouse or significant other. If they are pointing out that the person did something wrong by saying so respectfully, that is good. No one should insult another. When the spouse is wrong, the husband or wife should not knuckle under either and allow the spouse to insult the family. It goes both ways. I have seen it happen.


I am in the camp that a healthy couple should be united. When we don't agree, we take it offline and do not air any drama in public. That said, I know childhood patterns can be real tough to break and that those we grew up with possibly know more of our buttons than our SO does. I know I felt let down when my husband allowed his family to bully me. I also recall having to consciously pull back when my Mom tried to engage me, while my rightful place was beside him. It's easier said than done.

Zster Level 8 Mar 11, 2018

I wouldn't bring my significant other around family that insulted her. If I felt that the insults were merited, then I probably wouldn't be with that person for long then. Either way, I wouldn't allow for many conflicts. I try not to put people in uncomfortable situations, including myself.

Well said


It depends on the situation. Blind loyalty is just as bad as no loyalty. Are the insults perceived or real? Is he/she really under attack or is he/she projecting? Life isn't black and white like that.

For this argument, say they are real insults. How would you proceed?

In that scenario you stand by your spouse. They are supposed to be a part of you...


It's purely circumstantial. Personally, I trust my family to be kind and courteous; if they were insulting my hypothetical wife, it would probably have got to the point where I was getting tired of her as well, given that I'm not exactly renowned for my patience.

Also, why not the other way round? If a husband should defend his wife, should a wife defend her husband? I'd expect honesty, but I'd also expect loyalty, to an extent. If I'm being targeted by my S/O's family, in an unjustified manner, I wouldn't take it lying down. I'd also want my wife to back me up.

Yes, both ways was implied but not stated.

"I trust my family to be kind & courteous". Yes indeed. But you are not an American boor.

@Countrywoman You've never met my family. They take blunt honesty to a whole new level.


There can be a lot of dynamics involved. My ex used to love to talk shit to and about my family. My family put up with it for a long time, but reached their limits. When members of my family stopped putting up with the abuse, my ex wanted me to jump all over them. I refused. If the spouse likes to put others down, but can't take it when people respond in kind, that's too bad. If you don't want people to treat you like an asshole don't act like an asshole. If any member of my family would have stared garbage unprovoked I would have jumped on them for it, but if they are responding to someone else's abuse that's a natural consequence. If you go out of your way to poke a bear, don't whine and Blame the bear after you've been mauled.

Nodding head in agreement...

Thanks! I thought that my comment might attract some ire. @ashortbeauty


Yes doesn't matter who if it's family or otherwise . If someone is being a dick they should call them on it


Yes. One should put his or her spouse ahead of family and defend them from insult or abuse. I suppose the exceptions to this rule would be if the spouse is being seriously wrong and unreasonable, or if the spouse has taken a side against one's offspring that could cause them harm.

Deb57 Level 8 Mar 29, 2018

Yes they should you should always have your spouses back.


Yes, without any hesitation.


ignore would probably be a better path as time does heal but once you retaliate it can unravel quickly


My first husband was very passive in standing up for his beliefs regarding work and family. Lost respect for him when he cowered to his father and wouldn't stand vs discriination at his workplace. He rarely stood up for me-even to my own family

That's very interesting that his backing off caused you to lose respect for him. Was he like this, or did you notice him being like this prior to marriage?

I changed in 16 years-became more independent with my own career and advocacy for our handicapped daughter. There was also the issue of alcoholism and abuse.


On...? πŸ˜‰

Is a personal or positional attack? Are they right or wrong? @ashortbeauty

@NothinnXpreVails either way..use an example from your past. Pick a pov. I was asking an open question to get opinions based on life experience.


If my spouse were being insulted or attacked unjustly by her family, I would demand that they cease. If they were doing it in my home, I would give them the choice of stopping and apologizing, or leaving my home forthwith. If it were in their home, I would take my wife and walk out unless they stopped AND apologized. If in a public setting, I would berate them for their public incivility and demand an apology.


It really depends on what it was that person did.

My ex-boyfriend just got out of prison for having over 500 images of child porn on his computer. At one time his defense was going to be that it was my childrens' fault. When our house was raided at 6am by armed police, I essentially told him I was out of there and moved out shortly afterwords.

I'm a firm believer of taking responsibility for your actions. If you did something stupid and got busted, you're on your own. If it's opinion based, I'll defend you completely.

Now, if you're only talking about insults, for the most part I will agree. I have never cared for blanket statements as I firmly believe nothing is black and white.

I was for the most part talking about insults, but I completely agree with you regarding major issues like the one you mentioned.


Thats a tricky situation but not a tricky answer. of course you should if its above what they can do to defend themselves. you don't choose your family unlike your partner or friends.


No one needs to defend the significant other because it isn't anyone else's business who one is with.If the family is that shallow I would not honor them with our presence however once confronted I would let them know in no uncertain terms that I do not appreciate their comments and if they wish to see me in the future to stop it immediately. It would be appropriate o let them know about their short comings as well.

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