Rav Avigdor Miller on Appreciating Your Wife Before You Lose Her (June 1999)

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Q:
How does one increase love for his wife, when her חסרונות are still bothering him? 

A:
And the answer is something that we talk about here all the time. There will come a day, after 120 years, when he will come into the house, and his wife is not there anymore. He’ll say, “Saraleh, where are you?” But she’s not there anymore. Now he sees what a misfortune it is to not have his wife by his side. He can’t hear her voice anymore.

Now, he’ll look back and it will hurt him to no end. “Why was I so mean to her? After all, she’s a woman, I’m a man. Nobody’s the same. Even two men can’t be the same all the time. You can’t agree with everybody all the time. You have to learn how to get along with somebody else. And I didn’t utilize the opportunity. I missed the opportunity to be a mentch!”

And you’ll cry about it. “I could have kept quiet when she said something silly. I could have been tolerant. After all, she made meals for me all the time. She always made supper for me. She was a good cook. She kept the house clean. She took care of the children. There were so many things she did for me, and I was ungrateful to her.”

And you have to know that it’s going to hurt him to no end. And in the Next World, he’s going to sh’rai, he’s going to cry out, “Gevalt, gevalt, gevalt!” רשעים מלאים חרטה – Those who act wickedly will be full of regret in the Next World. And you’re going to say, “Ribono Shel Olam, let me come back to this world and I’ll make another attempt.” “Oh no!” Hashem says. “You had one chance and that’s all.”

And so, while you still have your wife, concentrate on looking at her מעלות. And you’ll find plenty of מעלות; plenty of good in your wife. Don’t be foolish. She has plenty of מעלות. The truth is that is that if she didn’t have מעלות, she wouldn’t put up with you either.

So make it a career of seeing only the good – and you’ll discover that there is very much good.

TAPE # E-178 (June 1999)