Bad Medicine

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Life is full of milestone events.  Graduations.  Weddings.  Births.   Retirement.  At all of these events- and many others- people love to offer advise.  Some of it is good.  Some of it is bad.  Some of it is REALLY bad.

I’ve gotten my share of bad advise in my life, and hopefully I can keep others from being the victim of the same.

Without a doubt, the worst advise I ever got was in regards to marriage.  It’s the old adage “Never go to bad angry”.  I shudder to think about many miserable nights have been spent by miserable people thinking this is a good idea.

What is the upside of staying up until God knows when arguing?  You’re tired and grumpy the entire next day, and it’s highly unlikely you actually solved the issue in dead of the night anyway- more likely someone just caved to get things over with.  What do you normally do when you have a big decision to make?  You sleep on it.  That’s exactly what you should do with your spouse too.  It is TRULY amazing how many things that seemed huge at 9pm are nothing at 7am.  And, if the issue is still there, you can discuss is with a much clearer head, coming up with solutions you never would have without a good nights sleep.

Another piece of truly bad advise that is so ubiquitous we just accept it as truth is “Do what you love and the money will follow”.  Umm, no.  I love petting cats, watching Food Network, and napping.    There is a reason they call it work- they have to pay us to do it.  Now of course, you shouldn’t work a job you actually hate or that goes against your beliefs.  Of course you should work a job that makes you proud and that pays you fairly for it. But expecting every day of your working life to be sunshine and unicorns is not realistic here on planet Earth.

I could go on and on, but I will stop with one more piece that I got personally that, thankfully, I did not take.  While going through a rough patch early in my first marriage, I was told by more than one person to “just have a baby” to make things better.

There are 2 reasons this is terrible advise.  First, we all know couples who had a baby- or another baby- to save a marriage.  Does anyone know a couple that lasted past that miracle baby’s 10th birthday?  I don’t.  Second, kids know when their parents are unhappy.  That’s a lot of put on a child to begin with, and even more so knowing that their birth was supposed to make everything better and it clearly didn’t.  Why do that to an innocent child?

So, what’s the worse advice you’ve ever gotten?  Did you take it?  If yes, what happened?


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