July is typically my month to take some time off to rest, refresh and renew…. so I’ve asked two of my team coaches, Susan King and LeAnne Parsons to fill in for me in answering your questions for two of our blog weeks. The other two weeks I will post video blogs from questions I have answered live in private webinar forums.
This week's question has to do with a husband who feels threatened by his wife seeking help for herself.
Question: My husband is very threatened by me getting help. He feels as if I'm telling our business to too many people, and feels like I'm lying about him. I'm trying to get help, and he feels like I'm pushing us apart, and destroying our marriage by bringing up too much information.
Answer: He's lying to you, and he's lying to himself. So the person who has to get clear on you getting help is you. You can say, “I need help for me. This isn't about you. I'm not happy. I'm not happy with the way I've been showing up here, I'm not happy with the way I'm reacting…and, you know, if everything is cool in our life, why would you be ashamed of me sharing it? But things are not cool in our life and I'm not going to keep staying stuck. I'm gonna get help for me.”
That's where you have to be really clear. You don't have to be shaming or degrading telling him that he’s a horrible person and that’s why you need help. Instead, you say, “I need to grow, I need to mature. God's calling me, to work on me. And I'm not happy with our story. I'm not happy with how I show up in our story.” Maybe you’re too passive or too aggressive. If he argues, simply say, “I'm gonna work on me and I'm sorry that threatens you, but I'm not happy with the way we are.”
It’s the same as if you were having to go to a doctor because you were sick. Or, if your husband sexually abused you, and you had an injury and he didn't want you to go because he didn't want you to tell the doctor what he did. You have to take care of you. Now, this doesn't mean you have to bad mouth him to the doctor and go into all the details. You can simply say, “Something happened in our sexual life, and I'm not happy with it and I need help.” You don't have to go into all the details if you don't want to…or you can.
Listen, friend. If your husband did something wrong and you're suffering the consequences of that choice, and then he says, “I don't want you to go for help because it embarrasses me…” if you comply you’re just feeding the monster of his deception and his abuse. You’re feeding his belief that, “I'm entitled to abuse you with no consequences. I'm entitled to abuse you, and I'm entitled to use you, and I'm entitled to hurt you and you shouldn't hold me accountable for that. You're not allowed to tell, you're not allowed to get help.”
When you collude with that mindset, both of you are unhealthy. He might stay unhealthy, but for your sake have the strength to say, “I'm not doing that anymore, I'm getting help for me.”
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