“I’m not telling you it is going to be easy- I am telling you it is going to be worth it.” – Art Williams

Relationships can be much simpler if we pay conscious attention to the trials caused by our own willfulness and if we invest our energy into solving them. These points of weakness already existed in previous times, and people tried to avoid them a number of different ways. These, for example, are nuggets of wisdom and pieces of advice. In the 1830s, such advice could be found in the American Almanac and similar publications, wishing to inform women about the proper functioning of a relationship. Without being exhaustive, here is a sample of this advice:

1. “Every married woman should know that there are two ways to run a household. The first is the threat of force. The second is the power of lover, before which even might must bow.”

2.    “A wife must never use any means besides tenderness to influence her husband’s will.”

3.    “When a woman gets used to saying, ‘I want this,’ she deserves the loss of her dominion.”

4.    “Avoid contradicting your husband! When we smell a rose, we expect to inhale a scent that is sweet – in the same way, we seek kindness in women. A man who is often contradicted inevitably begins to feel enmity towards the one who contradicts him, and this sentiment only grows with time.”

5.    “Make yourself useful when it comes to household chores!”

6.    “Wait for your husband to share what is vital for you to know, and do not give advice unless requested!”

7.    “Never assume the task of being guardian of your husband’s morals, and don’t preach sermons to him. Instead of preaching, set a good example!”

8.    “Practice good morals yourself, so that he may grow to love them.”

9.    “Draw attention to yourself by always being attentive to him. Never ask for anything, and you will reap bountiful rewards! “

10.  “Always seem enchanted with every small favor he does for you, because this will encourage more such favor in the future. “

11.  “Men, like women, tend to be vain. Do not wound his vanity, not even in the most trifling way!”

12.  “A woman may have more sense than her husband, but she must not show that she is aware of it.”

13.  “When a man is acting unreasonably, never show him the error of his ways! Instead, guide him, calmly and kindly, to reason.”

14.  “If you succeed in convincing him, allow him to believe it was his own achievement, that he discerned the right and proper path. Should he lose his patience, act as though you are obeying his will!”

15.  “If he is violent, never strike back and never plead with him to show restraint. Instead, step into your closet and pour out your complaints to God. The prayers of the righteous can work wonders!”

16.  “Pick your female friends well! Rather, keep a few close friends and do not follow all their advice – especially if they contradict the above.”

17.  “Prize beauty without luxury and enjoyment without extravagance! Dress with taste, but most of all, with modesty.”

18.  “Vary the fashion of your clothes with respect to color! It will bring versatility to your thoughts and highlight pleasant memories. Such things may seem like trifles, but they are more important than you think.”