Husbands and Wives

Taken from Vanity Fair, which came in the mail yesterday, and for the first time in six months, was actually opened before three months had passed….

Blanche Ebutt’s Don’ts for Husbands and Don’ts for Wives were first published nearly 100 years ago. They have been reissued…here are some highlights.

Don’ts for Wives:
**Don’t let your husband wear a violet tie with grass-green socks. If he is unhappily devoid of the color sense, he must be forcibly restrained, but–don’t be sarcastic about your husband’s taste in dress.
**Don’t try to excite your husband’s jealousy by flirting with other men. You may succeed better than you want to. It is like playing with tigers and edged tools and volanoes all in one.

Don’ts for Husbands:
**Don’t insist on having the last word. If you know when to drop an argument, you are a wise man.
**(This one is my favorite…) Don’t be surprised, or annoyed, or disappointed, to find, after treating your wife for years as a featherbrain, that you have made her one, and that she fails to rise to the occasion when you need her help.

I’m guessing that last one is what my ex-boyfriends did with their current wives during courtship and engagement…several of my ex-es called me within a few months of their marriages, “just to talk.” One called me on his honeymoon.

My response to each of them? “You have a wife now. Go talk to her.”

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