Love and respect is not something new to anyone who studies what the Bible has to say about marriage. Ephesians 5:22-33 is very clear that husbands should love their wives and wives should submit to or respect their husbands. This makes perfect sense in our minds but somehow between our thoughts and our actions and attitudes something gets lost. I have recently been doing a lot of research in what it really means to a husband for his wife to be respectful versus disrespectful. Here is the overwhelmingly consistent fact I find. Guys and Gals just don’t see it them same way. My response to that is that’s fine but how then do we bridge the gap between the sexes?
I have long since realized that we don’t have the ability to change anyone. Although this is a true fact, I see many women who live a life that indicates their concept really is, “My husband is like an old house. Once I get him fixed up he will be just great.” Women have a tendency to be fixers. Of this crowd of ladies I have for many years been the leader of the pack. I have spent the last 10 years working to remove myself from this group. I have worked very hard to move to the group of people who really understand that the only person on the planet that you can really change is yourself. To this end I have been working on changing myself from a disrespectful woman to a wife/woman of great respect. I do give myself some credit for the change I have made but every day I find more ways that need to be changed.
I have recently been reading a blog about respectful wives. I have often read it thinking that the writer of the blog is just plain wrong. In an effort to check my judgement I frequently enlist the assistance of my favorite guy, my husband. Much to my dismay he has yet to say that the things I thought were wrong were indeed wrong. So each time I reread the blog and try to break it down in ways that can be applied to my life. I suspect that I am not the only girl who needs a lot of instruction on what being respectful looks like. That will come. I am starting series of blogs that deal with how we as women can become more respectful.
I have decided to start with my story. I was married for 20 years to one man. That marriage ended in divorce. I really wanted to leave the marriage with the idea that it was all HIS FAULT. However, I must admit that there was plenty of blame to go around. One of the biggest faults I had in that marriage was that I was the QUEEN of Disrespect. That is bad, but what is worse is that I was completely oblivious to this fact. So I would like to go record asking my former husband to forgive me for being so disrespectful to him.
The list of ways I was disrespectful are so numerous there are not enough pages in this blog to contain them all. So just to give you an idea of what I was like, here are few that come to mind as I write:
- I once bought a car without even discussing it with him.
- I rarely accepted his opinion without countering with my own opinion and then insisted that we do “what I knew was best.”
- I frequently undermined his authority with the children.
- I told jokes at his expense to other people.
- I corrected him in public.
- I treated him like a child to many times to count.
- I frequently interupted him when he was talking to make my own point.
Unfortunately the list could continue for a very long time. I’m guessing by now you get the idea. My concern however, is that there are many girls out there just like me who failed to see the problem with this behavior or maybe you have an idea that it is wrong but you have many excuses to justify bad behavior like I have listed.
It’s pretty easy to see how the actions I listed above are disrespectful but the problem comes with the less obvious ways of being disrespectful. In future blogs we will look at subtle ways of disrespect and wonderful ways that we can respect and honor our man.
For now just begin to ask yourself, am I disrespectful and am I willing to make some hard choices to change. Finally I would like to remind you of one thing if you do it will make a huge change in your marriage. Guys need a lot more cheers than they do correction. So girls lets pick up or pom poms and show our guys that we are their biggest supporters and not their biggest critics. *\o/* *\o/* *\o/*