Monday, August 19, 2013

There's nothing wrong with you-( Part 1)

I came across this article and it made me really mad. I take issue with a lot of faith based family advice because it is always advising the woman to settle and compromise herself to be a good wife. I know our name is the Stepford Sisters, but to tell you the truth, I can't imagine anything more horrible than being married to a stepford wife or husband. I need substance, I need passion, I need excitement. Someone who hollows themselves out to be what the other person wants is nothing. I don't want to waste my time with nothing and I certainly don't want to become nothing. Why would I want to spend the rest of my life with someone who prefers that? So I am going to rant about an article that I believe proposes just that.

The article is entitled: 15 Things Wives Should Stop Doing by Mary May Larmoyeux at Familylife.com

Well, I don't know about the rest of you ladies, but that is enough to set me off right there. It is pretty clear this article is not going to tell me to stay true to myself.


1. Stop thinking that your way is the “right” way. If he does something differently, it does not mean that it’s wrong. When a wife insists on having her own way, she is in essence saying, “I have to be in control.”

Okay, number one makes sense for the most part. There is more than one right way of doing something. There are reasons some ways are better than others though. If someone uses a towel to wipe up raw meat juice and then uses that same towel to dry dishes I think it is okay to point out to them that they should get a clean towel. You don't just sit back and thank them for "helping" and enjoy your next meal of e coli. So yes, there are times it is just a matter of preference, but not always, and if you are a mature adult you should be able to take a step back and realize the difference.


2. Don’t put others before your husband. God designed companionship in marriage so that a husband and wife can meet one another’s need for a close, intimate, human relationship. He even said in Genesis 2:18, “It is not good that the man should be alone.” So what happens when you put your mother, a friend, or even a child before your spouse? Actually, you take a step (often unintentional) toward isolation in your marriage. If you choose, for example, to spend an afternoon shopping with your mom when your husband asked you to watch a football game with him, you may leave hubby feeling that he has second place in your heart.

This one is ridiculous. Does hubby want to go shopping with you and your mom? I am assuming in this scenario the wife isn't a big football fan. If she was, she would never choose shopping over the game. Football fans don't do that. I am also assuming the husband doesn't like shopping with his wife and mother in law because no husband likes that. He probably doesn't like shopping with his wife period, so she is sparing him that torture by going with someone else...But because God says it isn't good for man to be alone, woman shouldn't have a life of her own and should just do what the husband wants? You are not his slave, you can have a life and having a life should make you more attractive to him, that is who he fell in love with, a woman with a life. Now, it is possible to reach a point where a couple does nothing together and one or both are cutting off intimacy with the other by keeping too busy outside the home, but the example listed above does not fit into that category.


3. Don’t expect your husband to be your girlfriend. Most men and women not only look different physically, but also have unique ways of processing life. One example of this is the need for conversation. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I’m guilty of wearing out my husband with countless conversational details that he doesn’t really care about. Now if he was a girlfriend, all of those details would definitely matter!

Wow. Your husband may not be a girl, but he sure as heck should be your friend. He might not care about everything that interests you, but the fact that you are interested in it should make him want to hear about it. I can understand if it is all negative getting burnt out on listening for too long, but even then he should still care. If it isn't negative and you are talking about something you are passionate or excited about, he should care about that too...the details of your life should matter. He doesn't get to treat you like your life isn't important just because he is a guy. I can have zero interest in a subject, but if someone I care about is passionate about it and sharing it with me, it becomes interesting because I am interested in them. Their joy becomes my joy. Their sorrow becomes my sorrow. If I don't care about their feelings then I don't care about them.


4. Don’t dishonor your husband. Suggestions included: Stop all nagging and don’t correct hubby in front of others. If you finish your husband’s sentences, you may be unintentionally communicating, “I don’t really care about what you have to say.”

That is mostly true. Sometimes finishing each other's sentences is sweet and romantic, but sometimes it makes the other person feel trampled over. I agree corrections should be done in private whenever possible, but stop nagging? I hate the word nagging. I don't know a single woman who nags. I know women who ask their husbands for help and when he agrees to do so expect him to follow through and remind him if he doesn't. That isn't nagging. Vocalizing your needs is not nagging. How is it any different when you tell him you would like help with the dishes than when he lets you know he is horny? I am not advocating withholding sex for chores, all I am saying is that it is never wrong to vocalize your needs to your spouse. It should never be viewed as something negative. It is an opportunity to become closer and if you hold in your wants and needs you are denying your spouse the opportunity to be intimate with you. Just because his need for sex is pleasurable for both of you (hopefully), doesn't make it more important than your need for help in the kitchen. It is more dishonoring to him to lie to him by pretending you don't have needs.


5. Stop expecting your husband to fail you as your dad failed your mom. “I spent many years waiting for my husband to give up and walk out on me, like my dad had years earlier,” said one friend. Her unfounded fears had robbed her marriage of much joy.

That is 100% true and good advice. Don't project someone else onto your spouse. They are not them.


 6. Don’t put your husband on the defensive. For example, if you are driving around a section of town looking for a restaurant and he’s obviously lost, does it really help for you to tell him that he’s been going around the same block for the fifth time? One wise wife said that she’s learned to be quiet in situations like this. Now, before she makes a comment, she weighs her words—asking herself: “Are my words needed? Would they be encouraging?” Proverbs 10:19 says, “When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.”

I'm sorry, it makes you wise to drive around in circles? You don't have to be a witch with a bee about it, but yeah I think it is a help to point out you are getting nowhere fast as long as you follow up with a suggestion on how to remedy the situation. If our GPS isn't working and we are lost I offer to go in somewhere and ask for directions. Gas isn't cheap and I don't think it is exactly good for his pride to be driving around looking like an idiot. If he thinks he can figure it out then cool , but if he is driving around the same block five times, he isn't figuring it out.


7. Never use sex to bargain with your husband. Some women intentionally or unintentionally say to their husbands, “When I get what I want, you get sex.” However, 1 Corinthians 7:4-5 reminds husbands and wives that their bodies are not their own. “Do not deprive one another …”

While I agree that is should never be a bargaining chip or a weapon, the scripture part at the end worries me a little. I do think either party has the right to say no and the other person should respect that. Now, maybe it is because I have a history of sexual abuse, but I am a strong believer that my body is my own and I decide who when and how it is touched. I would never say to my husband "if you don't wash the dishes I won't have sex with you" (can you tell we have a lot of dirty dishes?), but if he and I are fighting and he says something that hurts me, I might not be in the mood for sex and that is completely my right. No way no how should you ever just lay there and take it to please your husband, and that shouldn't please him anyway, he should want it to be enjoyable for both of you.

Look for the next eight suggestions and my opinions on them in a future post!


5 comments:

  1. I couldn't agree more with number two. When I got married my husband and I agreed to have a life outside of our marriage and it really helps us a lot. We do things without one another maybe once a week or once every other week, whether it's something small like I clean while he works on his car or big like over the weekend when I went to visit family without him. We love being together but that doesn't mean we have to do EVERYTHING together!

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  2. Being able to do things separately certainly helps us maintain our individual identity and needs. If my husband and I would do everything together we would have nothing to talk about, no new discussions to have. At least doing things without each other gives us something new to bring to the table after having been together for over 10 years. It is easy to run out of interesting things in that length of time!
    -Stephanie Stepford

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  3. hi, sisters,
    Thanks for this problem-solving aritlce. I just printed out your article to give my wife. Hope she will not mind reading this. I also hope this will solve many problems.
    regards,

    partly innocent husband.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let us know how it works out!

      Wishing you the best!

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  4. I agree mostly with the original article. It's refreshing to see an article that isn't demonizing the husband or making him out to be the typical "stupid idiot that couldn't survive without his wife". There definitely needs to be more articles like this that aim at improving the wife's behavior.
    A quick note - Even as a woman, I find that "Mr. Right, Mrs. Always Right" pillow picture encouraging misandric stereotypes that men aren't as "correct" as women, ie. that women are intellectually superior. Imagine if the sexes were reversed, would that make you feel good seeing that? Probably not. It would be appreciative if you would take both men and women into consideration, since both men and women make up your readership.
    For number 2, if an activity is agreed upon to spend time together as husband and wife, it's not right to ditch the husband to do something you enjoy doing better. Imagine if he did the same after you both made plans. Marriage works both ways, and that means compromising from time to time. If you only want to do things you enjoy, why bother getting married? Simply planning ahead and sticking to those plans will avoid this mess.
    I totally agree with number 3, so many women are guilty of chatting to their husbands as if they're another girl friend. Men don't care about the same subjects that women do (office gossip, ranting about a horrible outfit you saw, etc.), and that's okay. The husband probably has pressing things on his mind, or may have stressful thoughts from that day, and doesn't want to be bogged-down further. Men are simply not as chatty as women, but it doesn't necessarily mean they don't care about you. Don't take it personal.
    With regards to #4, I agree completely with the article, that type of behavior is flat-out abusive. So many sadistic women take any opportunity to demean and socially humiliate the husband, to make herself look "superior" in front of others. No human being should be treated like that. However, in regards to your example, I feel that kitchen chores should be the wife's responsibility (I thought that's what this blog was about?).
    With #6, is it really that hard to not make negative or demeaning comments towards the husband? I don't know why this type of example is always assumed to be a "pride" thing. Just shut up and let him think, if you don't have any useful information to offer (not to you personally, in a general sense). He already knows he's circled the block 5x. Luckily, most men seem to be very good with directions, it's me that needs the navigation help! Just plan ahead, there are search engine maps on the web that provide printable directions to and from anywhere.
    Number 7 is a big one. Withholding sex as a weapon is one of the most manipulative control tactics women use, and it's not right. It's understandable that a wife may not be in the mood after an argument or whatever, but the moment she uses it to "punish" him is when she's in the wrong. The husband ought to do the same to such a manipulative wife, so that maybe she can understand the hurt it causes when she does so.

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