Is Marriage Really “Ugly?”

MARRIAGE IS NOT BEAUTIFUL

Image result for marriage fight

“Marriage is ugly. You will spend the rest of your life seeing the absolute best and worst in someone. You will see them when they are mad, sad, stubborn, and so unlovable that they make you want to scream. You will witness parts of them no one will ever see but you. They will ignite all sorts of emotions that include anger, weeping, laughter and joy.

Marriage isn’t a beautiful thing, but it is amazing. It is knowing that someone loves you and won’t leave you even when you are being nasty. It is having someone who’s got your back no matter what. It is fighting over stupid things, falling asleep in each others arms, and feeling like there will never be enough time to spend together.

Marriage is the dirtiest, hardest, most rewarding job there is because at the end of the day you get to crawl into bed with your best friend, the weirdest, most annoying, loving, goofy, perfect person that you will ever know.

Marriage is not beautiful but it is quite an adventure!”

 

***

I came across this online today, and kind of went “Huh?”

I get it that marriage has difficult moments because both the husband and wife are human (and sinners) and we just kind of have a human knack for selfishness… BUT it shouldn’t always feel ugly or be this way.

I know I’ve gotten criticized for being an envy inciter for posting happy pictures or talking about how good marriage can be, but perhaps it’s my optimism that helps me focus on the positives.  I would just never call marriage “ugly.”

To me, it really is beautiful.  Yes, even with the misunderstandings, or when dealing with an imperfect human… when you talk it out together, forgive each other and choose move on, it does feel beautiful.  Misunderstandings and working through problems can actually bring couples closer when they do it peacefully and keep the end goal in mind (of staying close together in oneness).

But I guess that would mean women need to take responsibility for their bad behavior in a marriage (or should I call it toxic femininity LOL?).

There are many behaviors that could make a woman (or a man) feel like marriage is indeed, ugly.  Especially their own marriage if these behaviors are present.

We really shouldn’t just allow ourselves as women to be “nasty,” toward our husbands.  That should be obvious.  And we shouldn’t allow ourselves to pick fights over “stupid” things.  There’s wisdom in bringing topics up in a peaceful way, or in choosing one’s battles.  Having a peaceful and loving attitude does wonders for maintaining a happy marriage.  This means you shouldn’t be so uptight with your husband that you make everything a fight.

I’m not saying that a wife will be able to never have moments of acting sinful toward her husband (“nasty” or fighting over stupid things), but when it does happen, there should be true repentance.  Letting your husband know you will try to not act like that again is also helpful in him forgiving you.  I do believe that with the fruits of the Holy Spirit at work in a Christian woman’s life, a woman doesn’t have to fall into repeat patterns of “nastiness.”  Even a bad case of PMS shouldn’t make a woman feel the “freedom,” to lash out at her husband.  Because lashing out shouldn’t be a freedom.  And no, marriage shouldn’t be ugly.  

An adventure?  Yes, and I’d like to say it’s a good one to be on.

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My Husband Isn’t Worthy of My Desire, Respect, Trust or Kindness

Wife angry

I received an email from a woman in her mid 30’s wondering how one can honestly desire, respect, trust or be kind to a husband that “doesn’t deserve it.”  In her own words, her husband isn’t “worthy” of her desire, respect, trust, or even kindness, that “the real problem is that this advice (my blog’s advice) is EASY to follow when you are married to a great guy and you haven’t ever had any hardships or resentments or relationship issues.”  That if you manage to get engaged early, marry the perfect man, have a dream proposal, etc. that you won’t have to work hard, or put any effort in at all, to have a good marriage.

This is based on the societal lie that the only people who have good marriages are the ones who got lucky in their picking, the stars aligned and behold, they acquired their “unicorn,” or mythical creature of perfection in marriage.  It is also based on the societal lie that women can treat their husbands “like crap” (her words), and still expect to somehow create a beautiful marriage, or at the very least, be angry or annoyed at someone (like me) suggesting that they should treat their husbands with respect, desire, trust and kindness if they want to have a good marriage.

Abuse, adultery, and alcoholism are things that ruin a marriage, and no, this woman’s husband was not guilty of any of those things.  He was simply an imperfect man who failed to meet her high expectations of carrying out a fantasy and dream romance.  She said in her email that she knew she carried some intense anger and resentment from the engagement into the marriage… and it was still there, 7 years later.  Because he messed up at the beginning, one time, she decided to make the rest of the 7 years full of anger and resentment.

For any wife reading this, let me give you some of the encouragement that I gave to this woman.

You need to let go of any grudges or resentment or anger you have toward your husband.

We are all human.  People make mistakes, your husband makes mistakes, and most importantly, you make mistakes.  If we as wives cannot learn to forgive and look beyond the mistakes that our husbands make, we are going to be miserable, terrible wives, and mothers who choose to live as an unhealthy role model to everyone around us.

If something happened in the past, choose to forgive, move on and let it go.  Never use old hurts or disappointments as ammunition to throw at your husband in the heat of an argument.  And never use past decisions to destroy the future of your marriage!  There is an interesting article at The Rational Male talking about a woman who never respected her husband in the first place, and when the time was right (several years into the marriage) decided to try her hand at attracting other men to get back at her husband for failing her several years before.

Marriage takes work

Your marriage is designed to make you grow and mature.  No, seriously, it’s how God designed it!  Living together with another person of the opposite sex, learning how to communicate in a healthy, adult way.  Learning how to be unselfish after a whole lifetime of putting yourself first enough to try to think about what he may want or need from you.  It is hard, but it is wonderful growth if you embrace it!

Part of the feminist society that we find ourselves living in tells women that they don’t have to work to have a good marriage, that being a “good wife,” that freely gives her husband a fulfilling and passionate sex life – that wants to please her husband – is degrading or beneath her position as a strong woman.  Cooking for her family is beneath her, instead women now take pride in never taking the time to learn to cook a simple meal.  Keeping a clean house is oppressive… who has time for that drudgery?  Nevermind that children need and crave a peaceful, stable, organized, reasonably clean place to come home to and be nourished in.  Loving her children and serving her family in these ways are outdated, and were oppressive for the women in the 1950’s era.  Women who still do them are backwards, old-fashioned, or at worst, doormats to be so submissive to their husbands.  These are the real, feminist lies we live in, and they do not promote self-less care and love for others, but they do promote selfishness.

So what we end up with is the ugly realities of a reoccurring feminist ideology that women should not have to do anything for men, except to show up, and then expect to be catered to for being female.

Instead of feeling entitled to a dream romance or the perfect marriage, we as wives need to be ensuring that we live and create our dream romance, by making an effort to be romantic with our husbands. By romancing him first if need be.  Not by complaining that he isn’t worth our efforts to begin with.

If your husband is the typical, normal husband who works for his family, providing for them, being a dad to your kids, the men that I see all around me whenever I go out, believe me, he does deserve your respect, love, desire, compassion, kindness, faithfulness, and gentleness.

I challenged this woman to try to emulate these beautiful characteristics into her character, and she turned it down, still adamantly assuring me that my husband must be perfect and hers just wasn’t, and although she felt sad about it, that he just wasn’t the man she wanted him to be, and should never have married him in the first place.

Dear wives out there, take my challenge.  If you want a good, healthy marriage, you absolutely need to give him respect, and be nice, kind and compassionate – you need to give him a healthy passionate fun and loving sex life!

Try these things for a month and see if it doesn’t make a difference, I’ll bet it changes everything.

The Controlling Wife

“My greatest struggle has been to have my wife remember that her role is to trust God’s leading through me and not regard me as an enemy.  I wish she respected me as the spiritual head of the home, even though she may think she is more qualified to lead herself.  God is sovereign despite my mistakes. My decisions for us do not take God by surprise.”  (husband, Jared)1

I think almost every woman probably has to work on this control issue.  Ever since Eve decided to take things into her own control and ate that stupid apple, it’s like this massive anti-trust has been ingrained in our beautiful gender.  The anti-dote to the control issue, in my opinion, is simply to trust and respect your husband.  Eve thought God was holding out on her – and don’t we all feel that way sometimes, that we really do know better than God.

While I love women and being a woman, this is definitely a downside to most of our sex, and a major marriage wrecker.  I remember sitting next to a couple (very young like we were – early twenties) at an event, and the young beautiful wife criticized her husband, in front of us no less, the entire time.  It was so painful to hear – and I honestly couldn’t believe it.  He barely fought back, and it truly made me wonder how he could put up with such horrible treatment!  I felt so sorry for him.  And I could almost sense the resentment and hatred of his wife slowing growing across the table.

Let’s get down to the basics, control is basically manipulation.  No one wants to feel manipulated, your husband can feel when you’re trying to manipulate him into behaving a certain way (that you dictate is right) or in doing a task.  While you might get results, they will also create in him a hardness and resentment toward you that you don’t want.

Some things to think about:

The woman of my dreams shows respect when no one else is around.”  (husband, Bill)1

The one thing I wish my wife understood about me is my need for respect, honor, and admiration.” (husband, Bart)1

The woman of a man’s dreams saves disagreements for the privacy of their own home.  She expresses her viewpoints, but allows him to make decisions without being second-guessed or doubted.  She supports him, whether right or wrong, especially in public.” (husband, Craig)1

“Controlling and giving are opposites, and giving is a more powerful tool than controlling to get what you want as a wife.  Moreover, what a wife gets back from giving is offered with enthusiasm and love, not fear or resentment.”2

If you can’t accentuate the positive, at least acknowledge it.  The world is full of messages to men that there are standards we don’t meet.  There is always another man who is more handsome, more virile, or more athletic than we are.  None of that matters if the most important person in our life looks up to us, accepts us as we are, and loves us even though we aren’t perfect.

Maybe there is a part of the small boy that never leaves the grown man, I don’t know. 

All I know is that the husband who has a wife who supports him and praises him for the positive things he does is the envy of all the other men who have to live with criticism, sarcasm, and constant reminders of their failures.” (husband, Roy)2

(1: Becoming the Woman of His Dreams, Sharon Jaynes, 2: Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands)