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The Real Dish on Nagging

Updated on December 25, 2017
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I am a blogger, digital marketer, and content creator from Manila, Philippines.

Photo original owned by xamyxjayx
Photo original owned by xamyxjayx | Source

A study by Everyman, a health campaign group, which covered over 3000 respondents revealed that women on average spend 8000 minutes in a year just nagging their spouses.

You read it right, that translates to over 133 hours or roughly 5.5 days of wasted time. The top reasons on why women nag include; 1) the husband not helping in house cleaning, 2) not doing the dishes and, 3) drinking alcohol.

Some people cannot help it and though women get a bad rep for doing it, men are equally guilty of this nasty habit. Nevertheless, nagging should never be a go-to resort when another person slacks.

You may have reasons to nag but there are other ways to do job without resorting to nagging.

Why do we nag?

People nag for different reasons: washing the dishes, cleaning, putting clothes in the hamper, leaving the toilet seat up and so many others. In short, nagging basically centers around not doing and not doing another's share in keeping the household. More often, you nag to scold someone so he will do something he does want to do.

It really boils down to making an effective way to make someone responsible for certain household tasks. If a person does not want to do his part, nagging will not likely make him to. It depends on the situation and the personality of the person what will make him do things around the house and nagging is definitely not one of them.

If a person needs constant reminders and nagging to make himself useful in the house, constantly reminding hime to do something can backfire. Truth is, no one likes to be told what to do. Teenagers resent this, how much more for an adult? Here's some reasons why nagging seldom works:

It is irritating

Bad news, everyone hates it, but still many do it. Some get offended, insulted and it even makes a person feel like a little child needing to be told what, when and how to do things.

Surely you don't want to act like his mother telling him to do the simplest task each time. Spare your partner from the same ordeal. Nagging is counterproductive.

If your partner is a bigtime slacker, try communicating in a more mature way. Try positive reinforcement. If this fails, maybe it's time to ask for serious counselling help or better put an end to your one-sided relationship.

No one likes to be nagged

Initially, it can make someone spring into action. Though it works sometimes, it breeds resentment or animosity between two people. One study by US researchers found that the constant nagging caused such mental fatigue that men have no other choice but to give in. Your husband may give in when he is too tired to oppose or just want want to have some peace.

Endless nagging could also turn your husband 'nag-resistant'. According to a study conducted in Duke University, nagging can be a real threat to someone with control issues. In a husband's case, nagging may even be perceived as a threat to his autonomy. It is possible to tell someone that you need things done but try to do it without nagging. There are definitely ways to make your husband do something without him thinking that it is your idea.

It breeds resentment from both sides

Constant nagging destroys the harmonious relationship you have with your partner. The person being nagged would most likely be defensive about it. It is simply human nature to resist something we are constantly pushed to do. The other side of the fence, the person who does the nagging gets frustrated and unconsciously begins to view the other differently. Nagging is the fastest way to drag two people apart.

Original photo owned by Hamed Saber
Original photo owned by Hamed Saber | Source

It may be difficult if your partner does not do his end, however, try to take this as an opportunity to learn a new skill. If you noticed that your husband perennially ignores the busted light bulb in your porch, or couldn't care less about the broken doorknob, then how about learning to fix it yourself that is, if hiring someone else is out of the question. These are just some of the simple things even a woman may learn to do. Aside from saving your partner and yourself from the emotional drain caused by nagging, you get to learn a new skill. My husband seldom nags me about anything, neither do I to him, but this 'if he doesn't do it, then I'll do it'attitude taught me how to be more effective around the house, get me to learn the different things about our car and other things women don't care less about.

My point is, it really boils down to what matters to you. Before you nag, ask yourself what is more important, is it the spic-and-span house, a properly arranged bathroom, the perfect toilet seat position, an empty trash bin, or the intimate relationship with your husband or partner?

It chips the walls of a loving relationship

Who would like to be in the company of someone who seems to see only your negative side and proceeds to nag about it each chance. Really, life is not about the tiny details. Some people may have made a mistake of being with someone who does not have an issue if floor is not too polished, if dirty socks are lying around, or if thrash is not being taken out.

Life should be enjoyed and if the small things in running the house or keeping everything tidy gets to your nerves each time, it slowly affects how people look at each other. Maintaining an affectionate atmosphere in any kind of relationship is hard enough but when you do nag, you are literally driving the other person away a little each time. Think about it.


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    • gmmurgirl profile image

      G Maria 6 years ago from Philippines

      Dear scub,

      It's sad to hear about your wife and how she changed. She might have some unresolved issues or underlying reason why her personality changed. If its possible, it's best to talk to her seriously about it. If she opens up, well and good. If not, then there is nothing much you can do about it. it's up to you but I know where you are is indeed a dilemma.

    • gmmurgirl profile image

      G Maria 6 years ago from Philippines

      Hi rodrigur2! Thanks for dropping by. Nagging is really something that should be minimized because either way it comes from, it puts a drain on a relationship. I understand the reasons why men don't do things, and nagging just won't make him change. One can try, but you may or may not succeed.

    • gmmurgirl profile image

      G Maria 6 years ago from Philippines

      @socks, thanks for reading. You are right, if someone is just not doing his part on any relationship or even not making any effort, then perhaps it's time to rethink about your relationship.

    • profile image

      scub 6 years ago

      Hi there :)

      its eater bank holiday monday here - I`m self employed so I took the day off to look after the kids. We had planned to go to another region to try out different flume rides and visit granparents but my sisters boyfriend collapsed this morning and they where all down at the hospital, it was decided we would be best kept out of the way as his condition is life threatening ( Extrememly overwieght - flesh eating disease) Anyhows, me and the kids went out locally. Had an awesome day on local flume rides and local theme park. When we came home I made tea for the family, did all the washing up, put swimming stuff in the washing machine. hoovered the floor. Washed the floor. entertained the kids, put them to bed. When she got home she totally nagged me to death. I`m not sure why, but I think the kids left the wii controls on the floor in front of the tv. THe fact is that no matter how much I try to cypher why she nags, she will always nag me regardless of wether I make an effort or not. I deduced this around a year ago. Her father passed on around 3 yrs ago and she used to have a very nice (his) nature up until that point. Now she seems to be heavily influenced by her mothers nature who is a very unpleasant personality indeed.

      I love my wife very much, I still find her beauty captivating even after the post pregnancy weight gain, but I cant see her by my side when I reach my senior years. As soon as the kids have their driving licenses in some 14 yrs time. She is slowly turning into someone I dont want beside me when I pass away...

    • rodrigur2 profile image

      rodrigur2 7 years ago

      I like that you made certain points about the reasons behind a man not doing certain things for his girlfriend/wife/significant other.Sometimes it is not that a man doesn't care which has become the explanation for many, but that they do forget, and it can be for other underlying issues such as ADD. And so I feel that women shouldn't rush to judgement, and think that there man doesn't care, because he may not be able to help his forgetfullness, which leads to the woman nagging. Furhtermore, we should all acknowledge the fact that a vast and huge amount of men out there do nag, and they nag quite often, sometimes more then their female counterparts.

    • gmmurgirl profile image

      G Maria 7 years ago from Philippines

      Hi FloBe. For some weird reasons, I'm quite thankful that my husband does not do the usual 'man' things around the house, because it gave me the opportunity to learn them, and I enjoyed most by the way. You are right, communication is the key...and perhaps a dose of understanding. Thanks!

    • FloBe profile image

      Flo Belanger 7 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      My husband needs to be coaxed (and he says he does!) I used to think it was nagging and if he didn't do it after I asked once, I would simply do it myself. I was used to living alone before he came into the picture and didn't really "need" him like some wives do. But, he WANTED to be needed and I had to learn how to include him in being useful. I guess the old adage, "you have to train your husband" was sort of true. He didn't want to get in the way and really didn't know what would be most helpful. So, the key is to communicate clearly about it (not during a hockey game, either! haha). Communicate, communicate, communicate...don't nag!

    • profile image

      socks 7 years ago

      I don't think that a woman should do everything just to save from nagging her husband to help out. If he is really so scatter brained that he can't remember something you ask him or he's too lazy to do something to help out then I think one should be considering if she should be married to the man in the first place.

    • gmmurgirl profile image

      G Maria 7 years ago from Philippines

      Hi fiksy02. Thanks for dropping by. It is just human nature to get frustrated, and it's sane to let your partner know that, but doing this on a regular basis turning into a cycle (on same issue) means that deeper issues are involved, either on his part or yours. Need to do more 'serious' talk with a partner, or ask for outside professional help, instead of resorting to nagging. I do all sorts of chores, it came to a point where I survive on 3 or 4 hours of sleep due to evening school. Or is it just me? Or the realization that nagging a person about something will not get me anywhere.

    • fiksy02 profile image

      Fikayo Balogun 7 years ago from London

      sometimes u r just too frustrated and the best way to let it out is nag. one good question is why do men do stuffs that make their loving wives become a nagging box. and for some men if u take on the if he doesn't do it, i'll do it attitude the n u may become stressed and over worked. think of how much work you can do if you have to work from 8am to 5pm, cook for the family, go pick up the kids, help them with their home work , go pay the bills, do the laundry. there is just so much people can do unless you are a superhuman