A Marriage Skill No One Tells You About


The service was quiet. There weren’t all that many people in the church that day.


We were sitting behind them by a bit. Their baby had been really good throughout the whole thing. But then, all of a sudden, she wasn’t. Not that she wasn’t good. But she wasn’t quiet. She started to fuss. Squirm. Protest.


This didn’t bother me. I’ve raised babies. And you know what? Babies fuss. I’m still always happy to see them at church.


Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him reach for it. Sophie. Are you all familiar with Sophie? Sophie is essentially a pricey little baby chew toy doohickey that is the.hot.thing for tiny ones these days. My kids survived their babyhoods without them, but I’ve yet to see one in of the under-one set without one lately.


Anyway, another thing you should know about Sophie the giraffe is that she squeaks– a lot.


So I saw it. Saw him reach for Sophie to hand to his baby girl. And, even in my mind, I thought, “Oh, no. Don’t do it, Dad…”


He did it.




Turns out Sophie is far more annoying and distracting than any baby.


But that’s not what this is about. It’s about what ensued after. Because, especially if you’re married, I think you’ll understand this all too well…


She looked at him. The mom, that is. And her eyes said it all. I probably should have looked away, but I kind of couldn’t. I watched the argument unfold without a single word passing through their lips…


Her: What were you thinking?

Him: What?

Her: Seriously? Sophie?

Him: I don’t know. It seemed like a plan. I was trying to fix the fussing.

Her: A squeaky toy? Are you CRAZY?

Him: Hey, I’m just trying to help.

Her: You need to get it away. You need to make this stop.

Him: Um. I’m not doing that. She’s gonna freak.

Her: Do it. DO. IT.

Him: (makes an attempt)


Him: (aborts attempt) Yeah, I’m not doing that again.

Her: I can’t believe this…


And… people? It was all I could do to keep from bursting out laughing. Because, seriously, how funny is it that we can argue with our eyes like that? How amazing is it that we can convey that much emotion with glances and eye rolls and narrowed eyes and raised brows?


Fighting with your eyes. It’s one of those marriage skills no one tells you about.

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