The Worst Thing
My heart is breaking a little bit for some friends of ours. Actually, the husband, let’s call him Bob (not his real name), is a really good friend of my husband’s. The wife, let’s call her Cathy (also not her real name), we don’t know very well.
John and Bob met a couple of years ago and hit it off right away. It was really cute watching my husband develop a new friendship. They had a lot of interests in common, and while it was hard for them to get together often, they talked on the phone a lot. Which doesn’t seem like a typical guy thing to do, but it was pretty cute. Anyway I finally met Bob myself and liked him a lot. He’s a really sweet and hilarious guy, with excellent taste in music (something that endeared him to me right away). He and his wife have a super cute little boy.
John and Bob hung out a few times, and we tried suggesting double date things with Bob and Cathy. We told them to feel free to bring their son along. But Cathy never wanted to come. We tried not take it personally, but seriously I think John and Bob had been friends for several months before we even laid eyes on Cathy. Soon after that, Bob, Cathy, and their little boy moved across the country. It was a bummer, since the friendship was still so new. But Bob and John stayed in touch, and they still talk on the phone regularly. We never got a chance to really warm up to Cathy, and we couldn’t help but resent her a little bit for making her husband move away – the way Bob told it, it was basically Cathy’s decision and he had no choice in the matter.
That was a while ago. Just yesterday John told me that he got a really sad e-mail from Bob saying that Cathy had told him the Worst Thing that any wife can say to a husband, or vice versa. That she hadn’t had romantic feelings toward him since their son was born. Which was about four years earlier.
Ouch. Now I don’t know Bob nearly as well as my husband does, but clearly it is easy to imagine how this must hurt. We don’t know what their marriage was like on the inside, of course – how can anyone ever know? But they seemed to be in love. Or at least, Bob seemed to be in love. We couldn’t vouch for Cathy since we almost never interacted with her.
Obviously we are very sad for Bob and Cathy, and for their little boy. But when you hear a story like this you can’t help but reflect on your own relationship a little bit. My husband confessed that he started thinking about how he would feel if I ever said something like that to him, and that it utterly devastated him just imagining it. Well of course, I would be devastated too! But I don’t believe it would ever happen to us. I just don’t. I mean, I know feelings change, and people change. But I just can’t even imagine it.
I know that babies do change things, for good and for bad. I am pretty scared of how our marriage will change, if I’m being honest here. All I can hope is that I am not that naive, and that we really do love each other so deeply (and we do) that we are protected from falling out of love because of the way our baby changes our lives. Since I’ve been pregnant, I’ve found myself more in love with my husband than ever before. I can only believe that when our world is turned upside down by a squishy little whirlwind, we’ll still make it out okay.