Posted at 10:45 AM Apr 06, 2010
By Andrea Grimes
Slate's Dear Prudence is on a roll with sad bastardry, this week bringing us the predicament of a married woman who is verily tired of her husband trying to get her out of her pants. No, it's not a case of mismatched libidos--it's a case of mismatched senses of humor, and probably some serious assholery.
What do you do when your husband won't quit pantsing you? Well, first you become the sad bastard of the week.
Writes the wife, from Pensacola:
I know this sounds stupid and petty. I have a great husband and love him more than anything--but he does something that ends up causing a fight every time. He thinks it's hilarious to pull my pants down, for instance, when I am doing dishes or just getting up off the couch. It's constant, and I find it annoying and unfunny. When I ask him to stop, he gets pouty and says I am not playful, and it's "not like it's in public." Well, I don't care--I think it's weird, and I hate it. How can I get this to stop without causing a fight?
There are many, many ways to be playful in a marriage. Repeatedly pulling your wife's pants down even though she hates it and asks you to stop, is not a case of her lack of playfulness. It's a case of a husband who gets a rise out of her discomfort. Red flag, much? Prudie is appalled:
I always wonder in cases like yours whether, as you were dating, you thought, "This is the man of my dreams! There is that little problem with him abusively pulling down my pants all the time and pouting when I tell him how much I hate it. I wonder how mauve and peach would look as my wedding colors?" If this is not a new behavior, why did you marry this guy? If it is a new behavior, then he has some disturbing ideas of what's allowable behavior. You say he does this constantly and ignores your pleas to stop. Next time he does it, without a word pull up your pants and walk out the door, and go stay at a friend's house.
Prudie further advises marriage counseling, and I concur. Is the joy of yanking someone's pants down really so great that this guy has to do it at the expense of her personal comfort? Doesn't sound to me like this is a marriage where personal boundaries and desires are respected.
Readers, what do you think? Is the wife overreacting, or does this husband need to be given the what-for?