I am in route, driving across the country to Arizona. We started in Pennsylvania (where it was freezing and snowing), drove through West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma, (where I am right now). Then on to Texas, New Mexico and finally Arizona. We hope to arrive today just in time to celebrate Thanksgiving with our family. Our POD will be delivered on Saturday and then the fun/work begins.
Moving gives you a reason to throw out a whole lot of unnecessary stuff, but I suspect that we will discover a lot more stuff that still needs to be tossed, gifted, or sold once we try to get settled in our new home. Some of the things I didn’t let go of are good things, but I suspect I will discover that many of them are unnecessary for me to keep any longer in this new home. Purging is good. But it takes focused attention and tons of time.
The same can be said of things in our inner life. Inside we let things accumulate – old hurts, resentments, anger that has never been resolved, lies that we haven’t identified or challenged, habits that block our future growth, and character traits that are unbecoming to the person we want to be. We’re caught in today’s busyness and seldom take time to stop and reflect, to sort and sift through what is no longer useful so we can let it go.
In the next few months, I will have more to say on sifting and sorting and letting go. Moving has been a metaphor for me to travel a little lighter, both in my outer life and in my inner life.
Question: My husband and I have a 30 year old, good marriage in most aspects. But one area has needled me from the first days of our marriage. My husband enjoys looking at attractive women. It doesn't matter where we go…to a restaurant, the airport, church, you name it, if there is a young/pretty lady present, my husbands eyes will repeatedly look at her as long as she is present.
I have expressed my hurt about this but he says he doesn't do it and I am crazy. I no longer say anything but it still cuts my heart. I ask myself if I'm the crazy one. Do all men do this?
From what I can observe, not many of the single or married man friends in our circles do this. I don't even want to go socially go out with my husband anymore because it hurts too much. I don't communicate it to him because he thinks I have a serious mental problem. My husband is attractive and women have always been drawn to him and his personality. I haven't shared this with anyone because I am embarrassed about my insecurity.
Answer: First, let me answer your questions. You are not crazy and you are not uniquely insecure. All women find it uncomfortable and disrespectful to see their husband admiring or staring at a beautiful woman, especially after she has told him that it bothers her when he does it. And yes, most men do notice beautiful women. Probably most women notice beautiful women and men also. The human eye admires beauty. However, men who respect and value their relationship with their wives, do not keep looking, they purposefully turn away, even if they do notice.
But I’d like to ask you a question. I’m curious about what you said in your first paragraph. You said that you and your spouse share a mostly good, 30 year marriage. Without knowing more of what you mean, I don’t understand how it feels good for you when your husband thinks you have a serious mental problem, he doesn’t respect your feelings about this issue, and as a result, you feel more and more insecure as a woman and wife?
I would think that a good marriage would reflect the opposite. When a woman feels loved and cherished by her man, she feels more secure, not more insecure. (Click to tweet)
Also, in a good relationship when you repeatedly see your spouse doing something hurtful or offensive to you, and tell him, he listens and reflects on his own behaviors. He would stop doing his behavior instead of telling you that you had serious mental issues and it’s all in your head.
I don’t think what you observe is all in your head. I don’t think you think so either. The question you didn’t ask, but I’d like to answer is, now what? Do you challenge your husband’s denial and blame shifting and set some boundaries for yourself, or do you continue to live with the humiliation of how he treats you in public and the accusations of craziness in private?
If you choose option #1, whatever has been amicable in your marriage will get worse. If you choose option # 2, you may find yourself actually feeling you are going crazy as you continue to pretend things are better than they are. The choice of course, is always yours, but for your own mental health as well as your God given dignity, I’d encourage you to think about option #1.
What would that look like? It might be that you speak up firmly when you observe him checking out other women. You might say, “You’re disrespecting me” “You’re doing it right now.” When he claims it’s all in your imagination, you might say, “We both know exactly what you are doing and I will not allow you to make this look like I’m imagining things.” He may not back down, but by you stating this out loud, at least you will be speaking the truth to your own self so that you don’t get confused and start to doubt your own perceptions. If he refuses to stop, you might choose to leave the social event, even if you have to call UBER to get home.
Second, if he chooses not to change his behaviors, you can set a boundary. For example you could say, “I’m not going to that dinner with you. I’m sorry but it is humiliating and disrespectful to me when you repeatedly stare at pretty women and I won't put myself through that anymore. Until you are willing to see what you are doing and stop, I choose not to go out with you socially anymore.”
I know that will put a real crimp on your marriage the way it is and that is a huge risk. But the alternative is to just “endure” and that may not be a wise option either. There is no perfect path forward or sure-fire sentence that you can say that will wake him up to his behavior, but I would ask you to think about what glorifies God more? Is it to just smile silently at his side while he disrespects you and other women? Or is it speak up, set boundaries and hope that through those actions and consequences, your husband may come to respect and value you as the helpmate God gave him?
Friend, when your husband repeatedly looked at pretty women, what did you do?
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My wife told me she has never loved me. Now what?
Question: Two months ago my wife advised me she has been unhappy, particularly of late, with our marriage. After some initial jostling to figure out the problem she has shared with me that she does not “love” me as wife should love her husband. Unlike many similar problems like this with married couples who have…
When I met my husband I had no idea about his sex addiction but this was one of my biggest clues. When he kept staring at women I slowly realized that where ever we went, even in church on Sundays or while walking through the mall that he would always scan the area and zero in on really young and pretty women. I got the same treatment, if I mentioned it then he would get very angry and verbally aggressive with me. He would deliberately attack me about something irrelevant – I know now that it was a distraction from the real issue – the ferocity of his anger usually clued me in to the fact that I had stumbled onto something he didn’t want me to know about. I don’t know about the woman in the story but I wonder if the husband has bigger issues that she hasn’t seen – but that he acts out secretly – hopefully not but it may just be the tip of the iceberg.
After reading George Simon’s character disturbance book review I recognize that my ex was predatory in his abuse and behaviour but not all abusers are this way.
Yes same story here. If I write a book the title will be “Death by Papercuts’ (survi ing emotional abuse. .or Second Hand Porn Kills.
First marriage my husband turned out to be a peeping tom. Second marriage he swore he had no sexual problems except impotency which I thought must be better than living with a pervert. Well turns out he probably ot tgat from porn addiction. He never admits to looking at it until I literally put it in his face and catch him in his lie. Orherwise he would die over protecting his lies.
God will expise them if you ask. I asked God to show me with my first husband even if the poluce had to come to my door..well when the police came at 1130pm one night I knew my suspicions were true. He still lied for 2 weeks but eventually had to confess. I don’t understand why they will fight and fight calli g us crazy when they know they’re guilty. Anyway most men do thus so if you’re single enjiy not avi g to put up with it.
My ex husband did this all the time. And said I was insecure. That worked for awhile. But what I found was if he disrespected me in this way then how many other ways was he doing it. When I faced it and looked hard this was only the surface of a lifetime of disrespect !
One aspect is the looking, the second issue is the denying and blameshifting. BOTH are hurtful and damaging. I have been down this road also. It has taken years of counseling and work to deal with these issues in our marriage. Slowly, there is ownership and repentance. Eventually my husband confessed that the total car collision he was involved in was due to him looking at a woman in a car on the way to work( I was home with our small children). This and other patterns in my husbands life were things he not only allowed himself to do but defended himself in them because they are ‘harmless’ and ‘common struggles’ to men.
Well, not so. The next step after justifying these kinds of things to yourself is BLAMING your spouse in any way. To me, it is like getting punched twice. The only way out is through. “Yes, I am actually not interested in finishing this meal because I am humiliated right now by your behavior. “. I am not talking about punishing, I am talking about honesty. We need to be honest with ourselves. I am learning to be able to say ‘this behavior is NOT acceptable’. This is what I am learning here and in counseling and with the boundaries book. I grew up with abuse and have to learn a different way of life. This does glorify God!
As a man in my second marriage, I would like to share my opinion.
It is not right for man to take a second (or extended) look at other women. I was that man.
It was only when God took me from a physically, emotionally, and sex deprived abusive marriage, and.placed me in a marriage with a God fearing women (who has issues accepting her beauty) , then a lot of pornographic desires and.looking at other women disappeared. To God be all the glory!
wife.makes herself emotionally, spiritually and physically available and desirable, a man will not desire to look outside his marriage. Every day I thank God for the wife He gave me, and people around us see the love we have for each other.
I’d you are that wife to your husband, and pray (with him) that these issues wold be resolved, and dress and beautify yourself ( also emotionally), then you can make him crazy for you, and have no interest in even a firat look at others.
with God, all things are possible. pray and work..
thanks for listening, even if you do not agree. Henry S
Sorry, but no. I have made it my life’s purpose and prayer to be the best wife I could be for my husband. I have never refused him in bed and initiate often and am adventurous. I kept my figure after multiple pregnancies, I don’t even own sweats or flannel, wear lingerie to bed, do my hair and make up, and treat him like a king. And his eyes still wandered. Still do sometimes.
It’s beyond hurtful to be the victim of a husband who has a wandering eye. When my husband HEARS A FEMALE VOICE ON THE TELEVISION, he looks up to see what she looks like. It’s humiliating!!!! I too, keep myself in shape, am an elementary teacher, wear make-up, and get compliments from others, but never from him. I don’t enjoy going anywhere with him and wonder how long this marriage can last. We are going on 30 years. He seems to be getting worse!!!!!
Libl, I totally agree. This is my second rodeo, and I also did what you said. Both times. And God said to me, “NO excuses!” (for sin). Sin is sin. If what Henry says is true, then God would expect all single men to be porn addicts. I don’t believe He does. Even a hungry person is not expected to steal bread. And food is a need. Sex is only a desire.
My ex and I went to counseling and was told I needed to be subservient and have meals ready for him. Which I did, and even took his coffee to him every morning while he was on the computer “checking his email.” There were times he was fast enough to delete what he was looking at and there were times he’s forget and I had to see “celebrities in bikinis” or late notices from the movie rental store and a list of the not so nice movies that were overdue.
What I notice in Henry’s comments is blame shifting. Why would anything his wife did have to do with his thoughts, words or actions? He is 100% responsible for HIS bad behavior. Yet, he places the responsibility outside of himself, and deflects his sexual desires onto someone else.
It is a fantasy to think that our behavior can make someone else behave differently.
Really I reject this idea in every way. My Dad would beat us children and my mother. He is gone but my mother has literally lost her mind and declared mentally incompetent by the state. Two of my siblings have committed suicide as adults. Others have attempted. A driving force in all of us is to be better humans than we are. But it is a lie that ‘better children’ prevent angry parents from destroying them. Those messages are also lies in my adult world. My spouse is a weak sinful human just like me. If he sins against me it is wrong in every way to then put that sin on me for any reason. If it is the only thing in the world that I have learned, it is this one thing. No one should end up apologizing to anyone because they ‘are not good enough’. That is one of the reasons I am grateful for this site. The lies have had free reign in my life until now. BUT NOT NOW.
Ps I mean I reject the idea that a wife is to be blamed for disrespectful dehumanizing behavior like oogling other women when you are in a committed marriage. And very wrong to blame the wife for being insecure, crazy, jealous, broken, driven by past hurts, having the wrong response. A healthy person would not accept the behavior. But sometimes in life a broken person accepts the behavior and accepts the BLAME. NO!!!! Just clarifying. Happy Thanksgiving! The truth will set us free. I am glad for other opinions but sometimes it is just a flat out clear example of the kind of messages that destroy us and that we fight against.
You have issues.
No mention of God or His perspective. This site.looks like a.forum for men-haters.
prove me wrong.
I forgive you for your judemental comments based on your history.
Yes I have issues. No this has nothing to do with hating men. I actually love my husband. God is glorified in truth. Really I have nothing to apologize for in my post.
Still reads like blame shifting to me. I do see any humility or repentance from Henry.
I see name calling too, with the “man haters” comment.
We don’t hate men, Henry. We just need to call you on your behavior so others will not be fooled. I imagine you are working on taking accountability for your actions and we are just trying to help you grow.
do not see any humility
When a Husband or Wife has the “wandering eyes”, it is committing a grave sin. Jesus told a parable that goes like this, “If you stare at a woman with lust in your eyes, you have committed adultery already with her in your heart. It is far better to pluck out your eye(s) than to throw your whole body into the fire”. Point blank for men, The body follows the eyes.
A man who is married should feel no need for another woman, not even a sexual fantasy or emotional high. He has agreed to forsake all other women, his wedding day. Not scan the horizon for every attractive woman he can find. He agreed to give ALL that bullshit up.
Ppl don’t take marriage vows seriously anymore, but God states married couples should. God takes Covenants VERY serious.
Henry, wives don’t hate their husband. Wives simply wish husbands would desire & love them only. With the husband keeping their marital promise to forsake all other women for their wife.
If a husband loves his wife, he’d feel no need to checkout other women, because he’d be too busy desiring, most especially oogling his own wife. If a guy or husband cannot do that for his wife, he has no business getting married. He has NO business to fuck up another human being’s life. Nor make himself miserable being tied if he knew he had or has a wandering eye problem.
And WOMEN, a word of caution: What you see while you were dating is what you’ll get in marriage. Men don’t change. You can’t change them. If you notice while dating he has the wandering eye, RUN & DON’T LOOK BACK. Drop him & have nothing further to do with him. He’s looking for a backup plan. Don’t take on a guy with the wandering eye. If he checks out women in front of you, I’d wander what he’s doing when you’re not around. And if he managed to hide his wandering eye while you were dating & you start seeing this bad behavior shortly after your wedding day.. GET YOUR MARRIAGE ANNULLED IMEDIATELY. AGAIN, HE’S LOOKING FOR A BACKUP PLAN.
I am very glad that you have found a relationship that affirms the biblical obligations that husbands and wives have for one another. It is clear from the 5th chapter of proverbs that wives are to delight in their wives.
In one sense, it is clear that a wife who refuses to respect her husband’s desires and make a good faith effort to satisfy those desires, places her husband in a place of temptation. That’s the clear teaching of the first few verses in 1 Cor 7.
We must acknowledge that our actions have an affect on one another in marriage.
If it is true that a women who feels cherished is more secure, not more insecure then I think it is only fair to say that a man who feels secure in his wife’s affections will turn his affections toward her rather than away from her.
That said, there are as many exceptions to both rules as there are people. Sometimes a woman’s insecurity isn’t her husband’s fault and sometimes a man’s wondering eye has nothing to do with the efforts of his wife.
You will likely find that a number of women on this site feel that they have put a great deal of effort into their marriage and their husbands have been abusive and taken them for granted nonetheless.
Some of them will likely interpret your comments, and the questions asked to Leslie using the grid of their own struggles.
Grace be with you.
“…wives are to delight in their wives.”
was meant to be “husbands are to delight in their wives.”
Sorry for the confusing typo.
Not true Henry, I was always very available for my husband and I later found out that he came into the relationship cheating on me, was very good at hiding it and pretending to be innocent and wholesome.
He never stopped his philandering even when we married or when I was pregnant and having his child. When I started tuning out his loud rhetoric and watching his behaviour I figured it out.
I didn’t know he was SA and he was very good at hiding it and he excelled at telling credible lies. Even when professionals in our child protection case were told the truth they still choose to believe his lies, handing over 1/2 custody to him inspite of knowledge of his high risk lifestyle.
Dear Ladies, and Starlight:
Please don’t misunderstand me. I am not like all men, and you are probably not like my first wife (
who abused me to shit, physically/verbally, etc hitting me in front of 4 children aged 9-16) or my current wonderful wife.
I was making a generalization. I was giving my story to show that God is a miracle working God, and I am the beneficiary of that.
I hope that through prayer and (hard) work, you may all be in a better place.
All I ask is that you don’t paint all men with the same brush, and that God is able to change men and women.
And yes, some men will cheat no matter what. God will judge them, and he will bear the consequences.What a person sows, they also reap.
Also, God judges the heart, we are not only able to judge actions, but are commanded to. In a godly manner.
I don’t think it is necessary to resort to profanity to get your point across.
In addition to being worthless talk there are ladies present on this site who should not have to be subjected to that kind of talk.
I wish you could edit your comment.
Ok. Sorry. What I should have said is “abused to the point of committing suicide”. God saved my life abd showed a better way. I did not mean it as profanity. Have not figured out how to edit it. My apologies again. Did not mean to offend anybody.
wife.makes herself emotionally, spiritually and physically available and desirable, a man will not desire to look outside his marriage.” You just put all the blame on the wife with that statement. You men have control over yourself, GOD gave all man kind that and free will. Don’t try to use GOD to victim blame. God gave us all free will. If a man goes outside his marriage and cheats, that is HIS FAULT AND HIS FAULT ALONE. No one makes you cheat, it’s a choice…FREE WILL. You are the worst kind of victomizer, you use someones faith to take advantage of them.
You are blaming the wife.
And sadly, church can become a threatening place when the relationship is not honest.
my husband not only looks at yhem but slowly gets in contact. When adked he denies n it turns to be a never winning argument.
I found him having started communicating with a woman he has been having a secret affair about 25 years ago. When confronted he goes saying theres nothing wrong speaking with someone n begins a tantrum a never winning argument
I really am planning to leave
What about hugging other woman? I don’t feel comfortable watching my husband hug other women when saying hello or goodbye. this practice is especially common in church. I don’t hug other men, I put out my hand to shake. Its who is is and what he always does , he’s friendly…. “he just likes to hug. Is it appropriate?
I went from cold church where.people only say hi to friends.to a loving church with 66 nationalities, and I am “cold” for.not hugging my wife’s friends. One husband is a “mushy” hugger, but everybody knows he is crazy over his wife, even his wife knows it.
So if there are issues, it is deeper then looking at others or the hugging….
not my opinion, my experience and good communications with my wife.
I am one woman who was/ is married to a man who others would say “is crazy over his wife”. In the past year, I have found irrefutable evidence of multiple affairs that he was having during the time he was ” crazy over his wife”. I know you are well meaning but some men are really good at faking it.
The saccharin sweet “crazy over his wife”, is often a cover for bad behavior. He is painting his mask for the world to see in his inflated sense of self. I imagine he thinks he is not doing anything wrong and can rationalize why he does what he does.
The question is, what are you going to do about living with such a man? Don’t you deserve better?
Yes, you are right! I have now been separated from this man for almost 11 months. He is unchanged in his behaviour.( Lying, cheating) unfortunately we have kids together so I will likely never be free of him completely. I wanted to make the point to Henry that what you see is sometimes not how it really is
Good point, Charlie. You are right.
These situations are so painful when children are involved. I feel for you.
Wow. That hits home, the “he’s crazy over you comment.” Everybody knew my husband was crazy over me. And maybe he was. Probably he was? I don’t know anymore.
What I eventually realized that no matter how much he loved me, he was still engaging in those other behaviors that led to lies and deception. And that he used that “I’m crazy over you look” to lure me into a sense of “oh, how could not trust him. He’s obviously crazy over me.”
CORE helped me see that as a con job. AKA “manipulation.”
Handshake is common in our church. One may see the occasional hug from female to female or perhaps even male to male (though more rare than female to female). However, a hug is not generally given to the opposite sex especially if one is married. I suppose culture can play into factor but in American culture even a hug is a more intimate expression.of respect, friendship and love. Although hugs may be given more casually within your chosen congregation as an expression of brotherly and sisterly saints in Christ, in my opinion would be inappropriate for the married individual to do so in most circumstances. I believe that is why our church hasn’t developed a culture of doing such out of caution and respect for the marriage covenant. Some may genuinely think
a hug nothing more than an innocent expression of kindness but it should not be a casual thing in any congregation for the very reason that it can and will stir up feelings and emotions of unease for many such as yourself.
I know this is an old post but I would confront my spouse. A good spouse will listen and be respectful of your concerns..
My ex-husband did this too throughout our short marriage. He didn’t just look, but made comments about what he was looking at; breasts, red high heels, clothing, etc., etc. I said something about it from the start about how disrespectful it was. He tried to validate it by saying that he thought that was why Gid made women, they’re objects of beauty. My ex is suppose to be a pastor! We went to dinner one time and I walked out and left him sitting because he started talking about another woman’s figure. I again told him how disrespectful that was not only to me but to the other lady and her husband and I don’t want to listen to that anymore. Of course it didn’t stop the looking. He had a pornography addiction too that has been going on throughout most of his life and his “ministry.”
Glad to hear that. God will bless you for that. Men are not perfect. I read somewhere that we are to overlook a multitude of sins. If you feel it should be addressed, Leslie is the right person to speak to it!
“Is it to just smile silently at his side while he disrespects you and other women? Or is it speak up, set boundaries and hope that through those actions and consequences, your husband may come to respect and value you as the helpmate God gave him?”
. . . .At a much higher level, think how wonderful it is that he has a spouse who cares that he is not living for God. I mean someone that actually, really cares. He should think very hard about that, it is worth a lot. —And as you know, all such actions deepen his aloneness. . . . .If you are not ashamed to think it, you should not be worried about saying it . . . . Of course, this is very easy to talk about in safety but when you really suffer for it, it tends to break apart after a while, but here it is: You always have to follow and speak your truth even if it sends the whole edifice crashing down around you. It is really hard to walk that path and I fully understand why people do not because truth is a very difficult road but God wants us on it. In most homes where people unanimously maintain a conspiracy of silence, one word of truth sounds like a pistol shot but our duty before God is to challenge corruption. —I say, don’t ever settle. You won’t grow real love in that type of a relationship. You will water weeds and call it a garden . . .But, I have never had to speak that kind of truth before, —thank God. That said, I have been crucified for speaking truth (just facts) before. That he says your “crazy” is very telling. You have been with him 30 years, your opinion should mean plenty. Truth telling, truth speaking, truth living, and truth loving. One word of truth, even if it brings the entire edifice crashing down around you, outweighs the world. . . . But you do what the Holy Spirit directs you to do, only He really knows, that’s why Christ sent Him, not the internet as helpful as it is.
My first reaction when I read that this woman’s marriage was pretty good was, “I just bet!” I agree that there probably is much more going on than looking.
I try to thank God for (not just in) all things, even if I don’t understand the why or the beginning from the end. Else I wouldn’t need faith, right? Joseph was in prison and had no clue how this would all pan out, but he was faithful. A counselor said my h should give me his computer passwords and never be on the computer unless I was nearby (long time porn issue). He gave me his passwords. I said, “But you are smart enough to get around that, aren’t you?” He said yes. And immediately I caught him on it at night when he thought I was asleep. “Only checking farm prices.” Sure. Then one day we were with friends and their well-endowed daughter was showing a fair bit of cleavage. H was staring all evening. That time I did mention it, but I also thanked God that now I knew that the apologies and pious platitudes about other mens’ porn issues were just a diversion to get me to think he was ‘being good’.
Now I believe that I need to let go of everything, every expectation, every temptation to ‘correct’ or call him on stuff. It just makes him go underground, and it causes him to think he’s getting away with stuff. He’s then focusing on me. If I say I don’t care because the Holy Spirit knows and he needs to listen to Him, then he knows he’s busted. Always. I thank God that if I’m supposed to find out, I will, but either way God will deal with it, if not now then later. God is not mocked. My place is firm boundaries, but I sure do have to cry out to God for wisdom AND for grace and courage to set those. My natural thing is to ignore and pretend, and that is bad, too.
My ex was a widower and when I confronted him about his disrespectful comments and his computer habit, his previous wife was “always so gracious” and never said anything. Made me to feel like I was in the wrong.
The 12-step programs teach exactly that, Connie. Step One: Admitted that we were powerless over —— and that our lives had become unmanageable.
And the Three C’s” “We didn’t cause it, we can’t control it, and we can’t cure it.”
I tried the Sex-Anon program but it was emotionally too difficult for me. But others may find it helpful.
I am going through a divorce. It was a short marriage. This was one of the issues. The umbrella was ’emotional abuse’, but under that were about 10 issues.
He stared at women in public. I am not sure how bad it was in private. I never caught him looking at pornography, but suspected it.
This is real. My feelings and what I observed were real. The hurt is real. He even stared at young, teen-aged girls. I confronted him 4-5 times. Each time he would say, I am just observant, not looking at anything specific, or I can’t believe you would think that! Yes, blame-shifting.
It got to where it had an effect on me. I would start to look around church, theme park, etc., and spot the person he would most likely stare at, lock-in on, and watch it happen.
It hurts. It hurts women. It makes you feel inadequate. Why would he stare, not glance, if he really loves me and is attracted to me?
I later found out, my soon-to-be-ex, had a history or predatory behavior.
This was identical to my experience Lily and then I discovered he was using erotic massage places and have since learned they often employ (trafficked) underage girls so it totally reaffirmed the observation that he does ogle young teenage girls.
Depending where we are, when my husband stares at another woman, I will say, is that someone you know or can you introduce us, you seem to know her or similar comments. This is my second marriage and I’ve learned to speak up for myself thanks to Leslie.
My husband lies about looking, saying he isn’t and that I am just jealous. Then he justifies it by saying condescendingly, “All men are pigs”. And “All men say stupid things about women’s body parts”. Its just normal.
I looked in his high school yearbooks and on several girl’s photos, he had written Victume (he even spelled that wrong!)
He does not care that he disrespects me , our daughters and all other women.
He apparently had been getting together with old “girlfriends” as well as who knows what other women.
I really believed that I was being overly paranoid but that is not the case.
He continued to want sex from me and got all kinds of mad if I couldn’t but he constantly criticised my body and talked about how other women’s bodies were nicer than mine.
If anyone had a right to be insecure, it would be me. He made me that way!
Kandi, Have you removed yourself from this man? For what reason do you permit this darkness in your life and your daughter’s lives? I fear for your daughter’s self worth. How are you managing?
I have also suffered from this for years and years, it hurts so so so much.
But even worse is the denial and telling me i’m imagining it and that he did not look , when I watched his eyes do just that,do they really think they have not looked or is it deliberate denial, I have also suffered much other abuse from him.
At one point seveal years ago I felt sick if we watched TV with any women in skimpy clothing or attended any shows, I feared his looking all the time, the pain was awful, so glad to readon this subject especially the denial.
. . . .Oh, and research shows failure rates close to, if not 100% (A Billion Wicked Thoughts: What the Internet Tells Us About Sexual Relationships by Ogi Ogas, Sai Gaddam). Psychoanalytically that actually means the behavior is normative and that is very, very frustrating because if the failure rate is pushing 100% it means our paradigm, our models of the world are suspect (re: men for sure, plus scores of “strong” Christian women who indulge in “mommy porn,” viewing it as nothing more than a guilty little pleasure.) We should never underestimate the depth of our subjectivity. . . . Anyways, my counselor says: “. . .Wise women simply see things as they are, not as their low self-esteem allows.” I don’t know if that is an insult or what . . . . But, I think, if we really get healthy in the factory of ourselves (our CORE) we will self-select people into and out of our lives. Maybe, the best way that can happen is to speak the truth as best we know how at all times no matter how much hot water it gets us in (—I hate boiling water too. I’m such a coward even though I try not to be.) The truth is an absolute defense against everything. If what we learn from brain chemistry, DNA sequencing and evolutionary biology is true than I need to accept it as true and not make up a reality. Evolution could so easily be disproved if just a single fossil turned up in the wrong date order. Evolution has passed this test with flying colors, ditto DNA sequencing and brain chemistry. In the end, you don’t get anything real by ignoring, pretending or not confronting what’s really, really real. —And, at times, I just hate reality it is so, so harsh. It is so difficult to get myself to understand something, when my world view depends on me not understanding it. Often our beliefs keep us from knowing what we already know. How are our beliefs functioning? What are they keeping us from confronting? Beliefs are so often used as defense mechanisms to cover over our serious anxieties and prevent a head-on encounter with the disturbing. Lots of reality is not magical or “fun” despite what anyone says (re:The Magic of Reality: How We Know What’s Really True) it is very, very disturbing, for me anyway. . . .Anyways, living with integrity means not settling for less than what you know you deserve in your relationships. Asking for what you want and need from others. Speaking truth, even though it will create lots of conflict, tension and the loss of some relationships.
Thank you Leslie for creating this space where we can work through our issues and give them voice. . . .Anyways, I am so praying for everything you have on your plate that God will do exceeding abundantly above all that you could ask or even think in your new home. I love to see God overwhelmingly bless people, it always increases my faith.
I do not know where you are coming from. The conversation started with a husband denying it when the wife says he is looking at other women inappropriately.
I say some men are crazy over their wife.
And you say things are not what they appear to be.
So it looks to men that the women are always right, and the man is always wrong.
This whole thread makes this abundantly clear.
The Bible is clear. Give the other person the benefit of the doubt. love overlooks a multitude of wrong.
If the truth Hurts, it probably was not administered in a Biblical manner.
I am coming from a place of deep hurt, as you will notice is the case of many others on this site. You are correct that it doesn’t necessarily mean that a man is unfaithful if he is paying attention to other women. I don’t think that women are always right and men are always wrong. I know guys that treat their wives in a respectful, godly manner and their wives adore them.
Thank you Aleena!!! God is glorified by the TRUTH.
. . . .Thank you Sophia. God is glorified no matter what we do and God will have His vengence. I don’t like to see people using the Truth to avoid personal responsibility, which can’t really be avoided. . . . When we marry someone, we have made commitments to guard each others precious hearts and even in the extreme, if the probability that God exits is as low as Unicorns, we need to honor those commitments. —Why? Because we want them honored from our side of the marriage. —And it is very good for us. It is true, even if it is not TRUE. . . . . For example, I have seen estate settlement cases where a slew of illegitimate children (—not that those children aren’t precious and important, that’s just the term used) have come out of the woodwork all making valid claims. The wife looks as devastated as we would if we definitively found out God did not exist. Some people have not been married for even an hour and they already have got eyes for another woman/ other women. I think the TRUTH of evolutionary biology, brain chemistry, DNA sequencing can be used to NOT take personal responsibility. That is the road to hell. We are responsible and everything matters, even the little things. A woman who would steal your love when your love was really (really) all you had to give was not much of a woman. This woman enabled that husband to cheat, and she wasn’t doing either one of them any favors. Consequences are built right into the very fabric of the universe, no matter who (or no one) is running the show. Being faithful and monogamous is not natural for human beings. It takes loads of work. Deep down we all know that. We have all been tempted to stray at some point or another. Even when it was only a fleeting thought and we didn’t act on it. Every time we acknowledge that someone of the opposite sex is “attractive” we are doing nothing other than pointing out that they would be a suitable mate. Not acting on that natural impulse to want to mate with a viable mating partner requires a conscious decision. It’s a constant struggle between what your body wants, and what the civilized/truth part of your brain says you should do, in order to avoid the negative consequences of cheating on your spouse and totally ruining your long-term relationships, —especially with God! That we have a spouse that cares enough to help us do just that we should thank God for each day.
. . . Sophia, I never thought about the name “Aleena” but it is as fine as “Aleea.” I have noted it. Sophia in Greek Σοφíα, “wisdom,” and in Coptic “τcοφια” —the Wisdom of God, is a major theme among that runs through all the early Christian knowledge-theologies. . . . It’s a crazy thing, escapism. You can go far and wide and you can keep moving on and on through places and years, but you never escape your own life. Personal responsibility, always!
Yes I moved out a little over a year ago. The divorce is dragging on. He is NPD and doesn’t get the boundary thing and I apparently don’t know how to hold boundaries against him. Low self esteem, confusion, trying to do the RIGHT thing according to scripture and for my kids.This did not start out as bad as it became. I didn’t know people like this existed and had no idea what to watch out for. Also I have nobody in my family for support, ever.
My husband made me feel crazy and so I thought I was the problem.( ex. “You have been jealous since you were born. I want a divorce. I don’t want a divorce. You are the perfect wife, but you have to change. Why should I not get to go just because we can’t afford for all of us to go?” ) These are some of the things I heard through the years.
I still have to deal with him until I can get custody of my daughter.
I am getting counseling now and hope that my girls will join me.
My 22 year old already believes she has no worth as a woman, so she would rather be a non-gender.
My 17 year old is pretty astute for her age. She knows she is worth more.
Do these men not know this is wrong or do they really not care? I would think that he would care about his own children. He tries now to show he does but we think it is more about possession than love.
They really don’t care. They lack empathy as part of their problem. Some want to care, but are incapable of it. My husband once tired to hard to fake caring and after a few months, he said, “I just can’t do this anymore.” It was acting to him, He had no feelings for others, yet he was trying to mimic what he thought was caring. It exhausted him. Finally, he just gave up and was transparent with his entitlement thinking. At times he really wanted to be different, but he just didn’t have the connections in his brain to do it.
You do have value! You are made by our God and he doesn’t make junk!! You have been emotionally attacked. Once you start getting some help and freedom, your personhood will thrive and life will be more beautiful than you ever imagined. Hang in there, fight smart for your daughter and the love of God will fill every insecure place that evil stole from you, I promise.
Re: The Science of Evil: On Empathy and the Origins of Cruelty by Simon Baron-Cohen . . . .So Free, this guy is a doctor/ researcher at a number of research institutions. He and his colleagues have been studying empathy for thirty years, and their aim is to put empathy on the table so that we can all look at it from every angle. People without empathy:
“They also show a similar pattern of under activity in regions of the empathy circuits in the brain when reading other people’s emotions and thoughts from the face.”
. . . . The essential thing wrong looks like it is with the frontal cortex (dMPFC, I don’t understand brain parts either) but when looking at a photo of a person’s eyes they are asked to try to infer what that person might think or feel (decoding the facial expression around the eyes), they have great difficulties and most importantly (―in case they are lying) they show massive under activity in the frontal operculum (F0), amygdala, and anterior insula. ―I don’t know what all that is at all about but it looks like brain regions involved in processing gaze, such as the posterior superior temporal sulcus (pSTS), are atypical. Mind-blindness. re: “A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its oppoents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.”
So, one take away from them is that serious change, especially to the identity of those that lack empathy is toxic, triggers all that stuff we are trying to see before we marry and trying to avoid. They also can’t deal well with serious paradigm shifts, especially as relates to identity. When you date someone make sure you go through all the change possible. The more change the better, it brings all kinds of things to light. I know that is really hard to do but ideas that require people to reorganize their picture of the world show the reactions that we are trying to find. . . . .But maybe that is not the answer because my mother was different and would just interpret any kindness as weakness. Like a predatory beast, any display of weakness was/is an invitation to attack. I was knocked right down, it got to me.
Many Christian psychologists say “Every time someone mistreats someone, they reveal the part of them that lacks love and needs to heal” . . . . .but if this is hardware (brain structure and chemistry) ―Oh my my, that is horrible advice. . . .This is probably true even if one hundred years from now they find it was different structures and chemistry.
I always think love can cure anything (Love gives sacred energy; Soul DNA) but maybe that is navie and gullible. Maybe only reason, evidence, logic and research can tell us what is really ture. . . . And yet the very comprehensibility of the world points to an intelligence behind the world. Science, seems impossible if our intelligence were not adapted to the intelligibility of the world but that thought could be wrong too.
―Anyways, maybe some things to think about re: empathy
Wow, about 5 minutes ago I said those words to my husband, You really don’t care, and of course he denied it, like he always has. He has checked out other women/girls our whole marriage, and just confessed to me that he had sex with 2 prostitutes early on in our marriage, we have been married 52 years. Frankly I am not shocked about the sex, nor the lies or anything else. He has always felt entitled to do exactly what he wants to do, and I feel what I read on this site, We haven’t grown real love, I have been watering weeds and calling it a garden, and it has almost destroyed my soul. I can only rely on our Savior’s atonement and hope.
Thankyou for your comment. This is exactly what I meant. People from the outside looking in will think that you have nothing to worry about because he is ” crazy about you”. But we know that that is not the case. It was and is all part of the deception.
The whole empathy question is interesting, Aleea. We went several times to the ‘Caring for the Heart’ counseling and read some of their materials. One thing John Regier often says is that people who show no empathy to others often have lots of empathy toward animals. As he says, “We all give our heart to someone or something.” My h did not cry when his mother died. He seemed numb. She was a lovely woman, and dearly loved him. He even lived at home still most of his life, helping his parents farm. Yet he breaks down badly when he loses a pet. He has found it hard to touch me, even wanting to watch TV during sex, but loves to cuddle his dogs and cats. I think these people make a conscious choice to shut down toward God and others. Maybe that affects their brain? Trauma can do that. And I believe God wants to heal that, but they need to really really want Him to.
re:”John Regier often says that people who show no empathy to others often have lots of empathy toward animals.”
Wow, Connie, that is amazing. I would have never thought that. I have heard FBI profilers say that the worst abusers first tortured and had no empathy toward animals. What Regier says may be true but until we see studies with a big enough sample size to have statistical significance, longevity data, out-of-sample results, with acceptable confidence intervals, cross-validated, etc. it is very hard to know. Regier may have already seen those studies and know. That would be interesting to find out.
re: “I think these people make a conscious choice to shut down toward God and others. Maybe that affects their brain? Trauma can do that. And I believe God wants to heal that, but they need to really really want Him to.” . . . .I fully agree with that Connie and I think that those types of issues can be generally healed. That is more of a conscious act of choosing to shut down and then another conscious act of choosing to believe/trust God for healing and He heals them.
But what do you think about a person who has structural brain issues from birth (apparently millions of people) that impact the empathy circuits (re: The Science of Evil: On Empathy and the Origins of Cruelty by Simon Baron-Cohen)? Did God make them that way? Why would God make them sick and then command them to get well when the issues are structural? Created sick, and then ordered to be well. I don’t understand that. How could they even get well if the issues are structural?
Anyways, thank you so much for the comments. I love comments and learn so much from folks here. . . . .Maybe for some men, unfortunately, losing a pet is more painful than losing a human because in the case of the pet, maybe they were not pretending to love it. Human love can obviously be so much fuller and deeper but the risks are exponentially greater. But as you know, to live, to TRULY live, we must be willing to RISK. To be nothing in order to find everything. And what else can we do but risk? To turn back is one kind of death; to go forward is another but often the only hope.
My daughter does Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy and she posted those on FB. There is so much we don’t know. and science seems to have proven something and then it turns out all wrong. I have trouble believing that people are born with no empathy and no way to get it, but who knows. God’s ways are not ours.
You’re right about risk. I think that is why some give their heart to animals, it’s because they’ve been badly hurt and so they don’t want to risk being hurt again. Animals don’t pose near that risk.
Thank you, hopefully your daughter has found Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy helpful. I have never even heard about it before. —Interesting videos, thank you so much.
“There is so much we don’t know and science seems to have proven something and then it turns out all wrong.”
. . . But Connie, that is called learning and I totally agree with how little we really know. “I have trouble believing that people are born with no empathy and no way to get it, but who knows. God’s ways are not ours.” —Connie, I have so much trouble with that too. The truthful position is we just don’t know. We just don’t know, everything is probabilities. I hate that Connie but it is the truth. Here is a truthful statement: If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in thy heart that God hath probably raised him from the dead, thou shalt most likely be saved. People want certainty, so do I but that is simply intellectual dishonesty and special pleading. . . i.e. pretending to know things we don’t really, really know. —We just don’t know, everyone wishes we did, —especially me.
. . . .I am a broken, shattered mess and I can’t project any real certainty, nor do I want to act like I have it when I do not. Transference of fear only works with totally authoritarian vessels as catharsis. That is why people gravitate toward many pastors, church leaders, et.al. who absorb many members dread with their certainty narratives. The “I know. . .” stuff. Because of this, they are effective in proportion to the amount of certainty they can project. . . .but linguistic anthropologists know that this form of language virus rewrites pathways in the brain and dulls the hearers critical thinking skills. I don’t want to hide my lack: I don’t know the answers and I am not whole. . . . Oh, and Connie, I have been reading up on Caring for the Heart Ministries and the materials by John Regier, “One week of counseling changed our lives. We learned about each other’s core pain issues and began to care about one another on an emotional level.” —Connie, I really wonder about that unless the “issues” are certain normative behavioral issues, then I get it. Someone missing certain brain circuits and certain brain structures for empathy, well, there are all kinds of these evolutionary variations out there because that is how DNA-based reproduction and evolution seems to works. Loving someone isn’t about what you can live with, accept or tolerate. It is about that part of our lives that will never be the same without Him being apart of it. That said, the universe is not only stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine. . . .i.e. “I have trouble believing that people are born with no empathy and no way to get it, but who knows. God’s ways are not ours.” I don’t know Connie, maybe the pathways can be rewritten and the missing certain brain circuits and certain brain structures for empathy, re-grown? I just don’t know. Has God ever healed an amputee? . . . Because it seems the equivalent. Amputees get no miracles outside of first century Palestine? I just don’t know Connie, I simply don’t know or even see a way of knowing. . . . .My counselor, Dr. Meier, says this is the equivalent of saying “I want my Mommy.” —And she fully knows my mother was my childhood abuser. —Okay, I want a healthy, non-abusive mommy to re-parent me. —Absolutely, and Dr. Meier that is your job if you want it but it still doesn’t get me any closer to knowing what is really, really real. All truth claims are on an equal footing without evidence that scales with the claims. Faith proves everything including all the claims of Islam, et.al. They are all true by faith, only evidence helps us sort out what is really, really real. . . . Maybe it is just about real love, kindness and caring and if enough of that was attached to the most bizarre set of beliefs in the universe that is what I would be/believe. . . . I’ll tell you Connie, being healthy while trying to be intellectually honest is really hard work.
Aleea, with reference to Caring for the Heart ministries, I have met some of the people who have taken part in it, and they were truly healed of horrific trauma by bringing it to Jesus in the atmosphere of compassionate, prayerful, and faithful counselors. Sometimes it takes more than a week, yet Jesus truly does heal. I think that most counseling takes people only half way to healing, by drawing out the wounded person to talk about it, but it seems there needs to be deep weeping as well, for healing to occur. I know, that abusers often fake the weeping (crocodile tears) and repentance, but in the presence of the Lord, there is cleansing in it. If you read the book, “The Bishop of Rwanda”, where this bishop goes from one town to another in Rwanda after the horrible time they had, the story is the same. Both perpetrators and victims had to first spend hours talking it out (in separate rooms), then intense weeping, then they could come together and find forgiveness and reconciliation.
That is a good way to think about it re: “. . .I think that most counseling takes people only half way to healing, by drawing out the wounded person to talk about it, but it seems there needs to be deep weeping as well, for healing to occur.”
We have a rule: If old memories still make you cry, write them down carefully and completely. Then we discuss them and cry over them . . . but Connie, they don’t really go away and you would not believe the amount of time Dr. Meier and I have prayed. God gave us a variety of ways to get hurt out and do it clean. Tears clean a different kind of wound? I try to clean the wound so it can heal but I can’t just “move on.” I don’t know why because I want to. Once you cry it out over and over and over, it’s supposed to vanish…right? It’s just not true. It’s just…well, as I say, a little less. That said, again, I understand locking ourselves in the situation where we wish for sympathy and want to be looked at as the aggrieved party just normally makes us totally powerless. . . . .Maybe some pain has no relief, it can only be sealed off? I can grasp the wound and feel the scar unhealed. . . . .Or we heal one wound only to open another?
I don’t know, but could it be like the layers of an onion? That when a wound is dealt with, it exposes another? (and onions peeling can make you cry too, no?) 🙂 Also what was talked about there (at CFTH) is how important connection with others is, on a day-to-day basis, to have someone who can call out the child in you from before the pain shut you down. Someone who can wrap you in love without question or expectations, who speaks to your heart and bypasses everything else, even intellect. I’m praying that we all here find that deep healing, that freedom and joy and peace that is past understanding.
When my mother had a breakdown, after having to flee her home in Prussia near the end of WW2 with 5 children under age 6, she had a friend who just stayed with her as much as possible, said little, except, “Trust God, trust God……” She said that’s what got her through. I was born a few years later, and remember her as having a deep faith, and being always grateful. She didn’t talk a lot, yet her compassion for those in pain was palpable, and our home was always filled with all sorts of ‘strays’. She knew that we all just need to ‘come home’, to be welcome somewhere, to be nourished and cherished.
“Here is a truthful statement: If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in thy heart that God hath probably raised him from the dead, thou shalt most likely be saved. People want certainty, so do I but that is simply intellectual dishonesty and special pleading.”
If this is really how you feel then I am not sure how you can offer any genuine Christ centered hope. Paul was clear that if Jesus be not raised from the dead, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.
I’m curious. If you don’t have full confidence in the Resurrection of Christ, then why do seek to comment on a website that speaks of “Christ centered counseling?”
Personally, I place a lot more value on people who wrestle with the Christ story than I do with the majority of so-called believers. From my perspective and experience, the bigger the proclamation of unquestioning faith, the more energy it seems that that person puts into trying to convince others of the rightness of the belief.
By those standards, I’m not a believer. Probably never will be. And yet find this site of “Christ-centered counseling” to be a community, a place of refuge, a place of spiritual development.
What I wonder is why you feel that it is appropriate for you to call out another on the propriety of their search.
Having gone through periods of doubt and nihilism myself, I can understand doubts. But my own experience doesn’t over-ride the incredibly clear testimony of the scriptures that “without faith, it is impossible to please God.”
If she is a skeptic, then we should have mercy on her as one in doubt, and plead with her to believe for the greatest abuser of the soul is not a man but the enemy of her soul, satan, who would keep her from believing unto her salvation.
The reason I asked the question that I did was because I saw one of the most abusive perversions of scripture I have every seen when she paraphrased Romans 10:9 thusly:
“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in thy heart that God hath probably raised him from the dead, thou shalt most likely be saved.”
Romans 10:9 is GOD’S HOLY WORD. You don’t get to play fast and loose with God’s holy word.
Either she did so in ignorance in which case such ignorance needs correction for those who understand that allowing the ignorant to stay ignorant is unmerciful. Or she knew better in which case any website that claim to have “Christ Centered” counseling that would overlook an intentional perversion of God’s word doesn’t deserve to call itself “Christ centered.”
Christ does not take lightly to His word being tampered with.
See Rev 22:18-19.
Furthermore, I asked also because Aleea appears to be someone whom many women are looking to for counsel.
But the faithful don’t go to those who doubt for good counsel because a double minded man (or woman) is unstable in all his (or her) ways (James 1:8).
If you are truly an unbeliever, then I would plead with you to run to Christ and beg like the father of a demon possessed child in Mark 9 who said, “I believe, help my unbelief.”
Do not think that certainty about what God has said is a sign of weakness while the noble stand in equivocation. That was the tactic of the serpent in the garden, to whisper in the ear of Eve saying, “Did God actually say….”
Paul’s certainty led him to his beheading, Peter’s certainty led him to a roman cross. James, the brother of Jesus’ certainty got him thrown from the top of the temple.
But for those who are truly unbelievers, they are the victims of the greatest of abuses. Because the abuser of their souls will have free reign to continue his treacherous abuse, for eternity, unless the unbeliever turn from his or her unbelief.
For that reason I hope you are in error in saying that you aren’t that kind of believer, and never will be. Because it would be a great tragedy if you were to escape the abuse of a man in this world only to be subject to eternal abuse in the next.
I’m not going to refute you, James. I do suggest, however, that this site is not intended for Bible fighting. You can visit any number of conservative Christian sites and correct others to your heart’s content.
To date, this community has gracefully avoided engaging in my-Bible-is-better-than-yours exchanges. Could it be that people here are mature enough in their faiths to respect the faith journey of their fellow travelers, and in doing so, extend God’s grace to each other?
I think you are mis-characterizing my defense of the faith as “bible fighting.”
I’m not interested in “fighting” at all, I am interested in constructive dialog that helps to build others up in the truth.
Truth builds, error binds. That’s the constant refrain of the biblical witness, woudn’t you agree?
It is not as if this website is absent any correction. One need only read through the comments on this very thread to see some ladies providing words of correction to Henry.
In fact, I see corrective words spoken here quite often.
Why are some subject to correction and others not?
Who decides this and what criteria are they using to decide?
To be sure, maturity leads us to respect for one another and respect for one another’s decisions.
I don’t seek to try and control what Aleea believes. She will believe what she believes. I hope only to voice a perspective in the midst of what looks like a very busy cacophony of voices that she looks to in order to inform her choices.
Spiritually speaking, maturity equips us to know truth from error, emboldens us to be strong witnesses for Christ in a world that values the self defeating value of tolerance above all other things, and enables us to discern truth from error in a culture that abhors a distinction.
If Ephesians 4 is allowed to have a voice in this discussion, it tells us that maturity is characterized by no longer being tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine. A Hallmark of maturity is speaking the truth in love so that we grow up in every way into Christ Who is Our Head.
Ultimately, I believe that maturity leads us to fear God more than we fear others.
There is a way in which we can show a shallow respect toward men and show disrespect to God.
I believe when we see God’s word misused, and God’s good news cast into doubt that those of us (who are called to be His witnesses to Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and to the uttermost parts of the earth) have a responsibility to shine the light of truth on that error.
That’s what Jesus did, did He not?
Did Jesus come to validate every man’s “faith journey” or did Jesus come to show mankind that all of their various faith journeys had dead ends and that He was the Way, The Truth, and the Life, and no one comes to the Father but by Him?
Much of what Jesus said did not exactly validate other’s “faith journeys.” But Jesus was perfectly mature, and yet He respected the truth more than the delicate sensibilities of those He might offend by speaking the truth, knowing that even in the offense, He was loving them more than those who would wish them godspeed on their journey in the wrong direction.
A genuine Christian community is not one in which everyone constantly gets their egos stroked like a purring kitten. It is a place in which we love one another enough to tell those we meet on the road that they are headed in the wrong direction.
Thank you, Ann L, for your thoughtful reply. This morning I tried to put into words what I wanted to say but found it hard to do, so I left it, but it bothered me all day, and now I see you did it for me.
Yes, Jesus ‘laid it on the line’ to people who were on the wrong path, but ONLY ever to those who were lording it over, taking advantage of others, and making legalistic rules in God’s name. Those who thought they had the scriptures under their belts and used this to oppress the hurting. And He was never condescending. One big thing that makes Christianity different from other religions is that God is love, and love casts out fear. Love doesn’t use fear to threaten us into doing or believing. And I have learned that God is big enough to defend Himself, in gentleness and in kindness.
Somehow I don’t think I’m the only one feeling unsafe here these days.
Are you suggesting that Jesus only spoke the truth to the Pharisees?
When Jesus encountered the woman at the well, He didn’t tell her that the Samaritan ways were a “valid faith Journey.”
He said, “You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews.
23 But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father bin spirit and truth, for the Father dis seeking such people to worship him.
24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
Jesus corrected the errant ways of worship of the woman at the well. Was he being insensitive for doing so? Was he being condescending?
You are absolutely right that perfect love casts out fear. Because, as John was telling us all in 1 John 4 that fear has to do with punishment and the one who fears has not been perfected in love.
Those who trust in Christ need never fear. That does not mean that there is no punishment, does it?
Jesus was equally clear that there will be those Who will hear, “I never knew you, depart from me (Matt 7..I think).”
Please don’t misunderstand. I’m threatening no one with anything.
This summer, the local weatherman warned our little town of the possibility of a tornado.
I suppose some might have taken the weatherman’s warnings as a threat, or an attempt to exert coercive control.
I think that would be an exercise in missing the point.
The weatherman isn’t threatening anyone with a storm, he is just saying that he is pretty sure a storm is coming and that it might make a difference whether you are sheltered or left out in the open when the tornado hits.
Rev 21:8 says that among those cast into the lake of fire will be the unbelievers.
I’m not threatening anyone with a storm, I’m just saying that when one comes, its a good idea to be sheltered in Christ, by faith.
As far as feeling safe. I’m not so sure that we are doing one another any favors by creating “safe spaces.”
I recall a thought from Mr. Beaver in the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe…
“”Safe?” said Mr Beaver …”Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
Thank you Ann L, I appreciate that. . . .I don’t mind people questioning, or calling out. Life is very, very hard for everyone and a lot of what we talk about here goes to identity. Ann L. it is unfortunate but people will even kill for identity. re: Primitive Christianity (Paperback) –by Dr. Rudolph Bultmann (The development of Christianity in the first and second century A.D.) Anyways, I try, often fail, to love everyone, even those that e-mail me and rip me clean. I try to dialogue until it is not a dialogue anymore then I have to set a boundary. Anyways, life is very hard, for everyone. It has been so hard for me to tell not just the truth, but the whole truth and not be a people pleaser. I love Christianity and I love Christ but I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with strong rational, logical, reasoning abilities and intellect has intended us to forgo their use, even when it comes to Him. Doubt as sin? —People have done their utmost to close the circle and declared even doubt to be sin. One is supposed to be cast into any and all beliefs without serious evidence, logic and reason, not good. —And the reason I think that this really matters is that I think believing things without evidence that scales with the claims causes people to drop their guards and they port that error to other parts of their lives: to dating, to marrying, to believing their spouse has changed, not good. . . . .All evil seems to arise from the desire to dominate others. That is why I have to watch myself too. Reality is a hard, hard, hard road to walk. I don’t do that good of a job with reality but I try. Reality living says: “Aleea. . . what you do not yet know may be far more important than what you already know.” Otherwise, your mind is just closed because you already have the “truth” in your back pocket. It is so hard to be really, truly open. That may mean (possibly?) misguided “good” women are far more dangerous than honest “bad” women. It is because they are seen as good that, in and by good conscience, the mob will always, stubbornly back them without question. —The hard stuff: serious prayer, self-reflection, action —what else is there? Anyways, again, thank you Ann L —and James thank you too, I appreciate that.
. . . .I can’t know when someone starts a conversation lower on the blog from my handheld tablet. . . . But anyways, and maybe I can think some more about this later but quickly: I am trying to heal from my horrible childhood abuse by being as honest as possible. It is really, really hard work not to just people pleasing and tell people what they want to hear or numb myself by showing the gapping holes opened by just everything in the last 275 years: archaeology; manuscript-ology; paleographology; evolutionary biology; cosmology; et.al.). . . . Reality is a very hard road. Reality has NO marketing plans and allows no lying, even lying for Jesus. . . . .Lord God have mercy on us! I fully understand the retreats into fantasy. Everyone goes there at times for their sanity. Our institutions go there. Our churches go there, a lot (re: magical thinking). . . .James, I think God is so merciful to only allow us to correlate the contents of our brains but so far. I call truth and reality the desert of the REAL. —That holy desolation where only the Truth survives, out past all the epistemology of church propaganda. That place where everything not real is washed away by the solar storm of Truth. —And raw TRUTH, again, it is not appealing because it has no marketing plans.
“But as I’ve said again and again, as painful as truth and reality are sometimes, healthy people live in truth and reality and not in fantasy” ―Leslie Vernick
I want to be a healthy person too. . . . For me, being in love and knowing/being known by Jesus is the best in love experience ever. But I don’t know if or how it could be real, I just know how I feel. More than this, when I need continual forgiveness and I want tenderness and love in my life and, again, Jesus is like the best in love experience ever! —I see from the lives of those who have lived life their own way and I see the tremendous price they have paid. I know I don’t want to be like that. Christ will keep you in love with Him because, generally, you will love the person you become when He is with you. . . . .But, we have the exact same evidence for Christianity as we do for every other religion. The exact same areas of the brain light up. The exact same brain states when “feeling” God. God made us to think and reason. He gave us super strong rational reasoning abilities. So is the key to understanding in life to shut them down and believe something that looks totally made up with little to basically no evidentiary support (—especially for the level of claims involved)?
Always my questions are always very simple and always remain unanswered: All truth claims are on an equal footing without evidence that scales with the claims. Faith proves everything and anything including all the claims of Islam, Mormonism, et.al. They are all true by faith, only evidence (—evidence that scales with the claims) helps us sort out what is really, really real. One thing my mother always said makes me wonder: “How come belief is based to the highest degree on geography?” And in the main, it truly is. I talked with a women recently who told me she had “a burning in her heart” that the Book of Mormon scriptures are true. She said she was from Utah and grew up among Mormons. Notice how the terrible hells of Buddhism and Islam can’t touch you or I because we were not terrified and indoctrinated by those as a child. I don’t know about you, James, but I wave them off as nothing, just nothing and I am never stressed over those “Scriptures.” Ever. I always wonder why. I certainly have read the Quran and the other religious texts of Islam, but as an adult. I only got the Bible as a small child, from my grandparents (—which infuriated my mother) never any other religious texts.
. . . .But, here is the thing, my counselor, Dr. Meier, says (as above) all this stuff is the equivalent of saying “I want my Mommy.” —And she fully knows my mother was my childhood abuser. —Okay, and again, I want a healthy, non-abusive mommy to re-parent me. —Absolutely, and Dr. Meier knows that. She is that. The facts and evidence from the first 500 years of Christianity we will not hide or numb ourselves from what we find. . . Many pastors have told me during my life that most of the things we know about Christianity’s origins are better left unsaid. . . . But I think the truth will set you free but first it will break your heart. . . . . You don’t have to be brave or a saint, or even very smart all you have to be able to say is “WOW, we just don’t know.” —Because, in so many critical cases, we just don’t know. . . .What is commendable about just believing things without evidence that scales with the nature of the claim?
What do we already know is true that we just don’t want to KNOW. As Dr. Meier says “Beliefs are defense mechanisms; they keep us from knowing what we already know but don’t want to face.” Re: The Emperor’s New Clothes, et.al. There is a huge difference between certainty and security needs and truth needs. Truth heals but it is nasty stuff. I just want to be healthy and healed. . . .Actually, that is not all of the truth. Dr. Meier says part of me wants to be healthy and healed and part of me does not. . . .And I just realized something in the few minutes it took to write this. . . .Wow, maybe somehow I am still being loyal, in the service of, my abusive mother. ―re:Judith Lewis Herman, Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence – From Domestic Abuse. I’ll have to think about it more.
I admire your desire to be truthful, that is certainly a quality that many lack, and as you say, lying, even lying for Jesus is sinful.
I also, want to say that I hope and pray that you will find true healing from your childhood abuse. No child should ever have to live through abuse and as someone who was also abused as a child growing up in an alcoholic family I can certainly identify with much of what you are working very hard to overcome.
I admire your courage and wish you only the best in that endeavor.
Just as your recovery from your childhood abuse involves choosing which voices to listen to, so too does your faith journey. In fact, I would argue that the two are not separate but are linked.
So, if you choose only to listen to evolutionary phsychologists, nihilistic textual critical scholars (like Bart Ehrman), skeptical archaeologists, and theological liberal scholars like Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crosson, then you will likely come to conclusion that do not lead you to a faith that will help you grow closer to Jesus.
If you also listen to theologically conservative scholars like Wayne Grudem, D.A. Carson, Ben Witherington, etc… Then you will likely be able to see why Christianity is the most reasonable faith. And you will grow in your understanding of the truth.
That is what I hope Leslie meant when she said the following:
“But as I’ve said again and again, as painful as truth and reality are sometimes, healthy people live in truth and reality and not in fantasy” ―Leslie Vernick
If you are equating a firm believe in the Person and work of Jesus, His death, buried and resurrection, His ascension into heaven, His will in asking the Father to send the Holy Spirit to complete the work of the canon of scripture (which is God breathed, and therefore inerrant) and His work in speaking truth through those scriptures, with fantasy, then I hope and pray that you are taking Leslie quite out of context here.
God’s truth is reality, fantasy is the tool the devil uses to get us to doubt what God has said.
That was the tactic of that crafty serpent from the beginning.
“Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” (Gen 3:1 ESV)
Like you, I think that a relationship with Christ brings feelings of peace, joy and contentment. But my faith doesn’t rest on my emotions. My faith rests on my certainty, in the depths of my soul, that my Redeemer lives.
Which is why I interact with statements like the following:
. .But, we have the exact same evidence for Christianity as we do for every other religion. The exact same areas of the brain light up. The exact same brain states when “feeling” God. God made us to think and reason. He gave us super strong rational reasoning abilities. So is the key to understanding in life to shut them down and believe something that looks totally made up with little to basically no evidentiary support (—especially for the level of claims involved)?”
With a statement of empathy and an apologetic.
Having come to faith later in life I understand what it is like to be genuinely confused by the multiple claims of the many world’s religions. But not all claims are equal, and it is absolutely not true that the truth claims of every world religion are on equal footing.
The same areas of the brain may light up.
The same areas of the brain light up when using cocaine as making love to one’s beloved spouse.
One is a beautiful celebration of God’s truth, the other a lie.
The evidences of the veracity of Christ rest in the demonstrable reliability of the scriptures, the unquenchable boldness of those who claim to have seen Jesus raised from the dead, and the power of the Spirit to testify to the Truth. Our faith does not rest on the wisdom of men (See 1 Cor chapter 2) as do the other so called faiths.
The difference between the Mormon, the Buddhist, the Muslim and the Christian is that Joseph Smith lied, Buddha is dead, Muhammad was gravely mistaken and Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
If you want specific evidences I can give you specific evidences after evidences after evidences. But I think perhaps one of the core problems is that a most influential voice in your life is lying to you.
“. . . .But, here is the thing, my counselor, Dr. Meier, says (as above) all this stuff is the equivalent of saying “I want my Mommy.”
“As Dr. Meier says “Beliefs are defense mechanisms; they keep us from knowing what we already know but don’t want to face.”
I don’t know who Dr. Meier is but if he or she is telling you that faith is just a distraction from your healing then he or she is part of the problem in your life rather than part of the solution.
My faith is not true because it is useful to me, it is true because Jesus is the Truth. He is the Truth whether I ever came to believe in Him or not. The gospel is not a psychological construct I believe in order to cope, it is the message of God’s very work in reconciling me, an otherwise hopeless sinner, unto Himself, through His Son. My belief in Christ is not a defense mechanism, it is my will bending to the most precious truth ever spoken.
The good news gets better though, my faith is the very path of healing, the doorway into a relationship with God Who alone can make all things new.
If Dr. Meier is telling you that faith in Christ is a “defense mechanism”, then FIRE him or her.
Whatever else he or she is telling you that may be helpful is being mixed with the arsenic of the most heinous lies ever told to you.
Fire that liar and find someone who will walk with you into the throne room of God and help you to call out to Abba! Father!, in the Name of Jesus, to receive grace and mercy in your times of need.
Thanks James for the truth.
In Spirit and Truth, is the fruit of the Spirit. .. live, peace, joy, self-control, and a few more. Gal. 5
herein is the comfort of true believers
Jesus was all about freedom from oppression and against the Pharisees who were putting heavier burdens on people than they themselves were willing to bear! I love this verse that I found in Proverbs the other day!
Proverbs 27:12 A prudent man sees evil and hides himself, The naive proceed and pay the penalty.
We are to flee evil and be set free from it, not bear up under it and call it ‘suffering for Christ’s sake.’ When we are led by the Holy Spirit and praying for God to open our eyes to see the truth he will answer that prayer! He gives understanding, he opens the eyes and ears of our spiritual understanding. Satan accused but the Spirit shies is the truth which frees us, He helps and He encourages us and best of all he seals us unto himself for that day!
Sorry that last phrase should read – Satan accuses but the Spirit shows us the truth which frees us, he helps us and he encourages us and best of all he seals us unto himself for that day!!
James, Several points:
1. This site does focus on being a safe space, and dismissing the validity of that need is simply stunning. It is similar to what an abusive judge once said to me when I asked for a Protection From Abuse order: Why don’t you just hit him back? It reflects a lack of appreciation for an individual human’s need to take cover to recover. Recover what? The physical and emotional effects of a fear response, and time to rationally scan the environment and examine a range of responses.
1a. No, it is not appropriate here to go off on another extended commentary or to equate all instances of safe spaces into a single, homogeneous category.
2. This conversation is distracting from the reason i am here — to learn healthy ways of communicating with myself and others — your wordswordswordswordswordswordsword
swordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswordswords come across as paternalistic and disrespectful of my own humanity.
3. Go in peace and for Petes’ sake, consider giving God some room to work in His own time and way. If you want to be a healer, consider adding the skill of listening to your tool box. Part of my journey has been to let go of my need to make sure everything is right, just right.
4. It’s a gift to yourself and a gift to others, this taking time to allow another person to simply be.
Thank you for taking the time to reply.
1. “Safe Spaces” are clearly a cultural thing lately, aren’t they?
On university campuses across the nation students are demanding safe spaces where the viewpoints of others are being suppressed in order to ensure that some students are insulated from viewpoints that may challenge their existing beliefs.
If that is what this site is intended for, and that’s a big “if” since I don’t presume that to be Leslie’s intent, then this site has sacrificed “good” on the alter of “safe.”
Jesus isn’t a safe Savior, He’s better than safe, He’s good.
Our faithlessness, sin and lies aren’t safe with Jesus, but He is good and will lead us out of bondage to these things if we will but place our faith in Him.
The problem with so called safe spaces is that we never really drill down into what they are safe from and what they are safe for, and whose opinions are safe and whose aren’t.
Is this a place where it is safe to affirm what the bible affirms, is it safe to rejoice in the truth of the gospel here?
Or is it, like the self contradicting notion of a safe place that many university campuses have adopted, a safe space that is safe for some opinions, and some students but demands that others be silent or leave?
Has this become a place in which some (like Henry apparently) can be called out, and his posts rebuked, his motives questioned and his viewpoint refuted, but for Aleea, her posts are only to be validated, celebrated and the errors in her post ignored?
2. I’m unsure whether you think the length of my replies is what you interpret as paternalistic or if its something else. I don’t think my replies are much longer than Aleea’s average reply. Furthermore, no one is under obligation to read my replies if they find them too long. I promise, if you don’t read my posts, I won’t feel personally slighted. But accusing me of being “disrespectful to your humanity”, I think, is an accusation that requires some substantiation.
Please point out what phrase or phrases that I have written in my points that are disrespectful to your humanity or the humanity of anyone else.
Otherwise, that is a pretty ugly accusation.
3. I don’t have a need to be right. I have a responsibility per Ephesians 4:25 to speak truth to my neighbor. Honestly, that’s your responsibility as well.
Do you think it is ok to add words to the scriptures to make them seem less certain than they were intended?
Do you agree that Christianity has no more basis for veracity as any other religion?
Do you think maybe that someone who reads those claims unchallenged might be lead away from Christ rather than to Him?
There are more eyes that read this blog and the comments that follow than those who consider this place their support group. There’s nothing wrong with feeling supported by one another, I think that’s worth celebrating, but if this site has become nothing more than a support group for a select few whose opinions cannot be challenged then Leslie should consider closing this site to the public.
Ann L, Over many years I’ve learned that many words mean so little to me anymore. For ages in certain churches and the Bill Gothard movement, etc. I would be impressed by ‘leaders’ using scripture after scripture, it sounded so good, so pious, and it even made sense (at least to insecure people). But they had an agenda. Now I believe I’ve developed a ‘sensor’ for attitude, and that makes all the difference. “The letter kills but the spirit gives life.”
What agenda are you presuming that I have?
What “attitude” to you ascribe to me?
I wonder if you might reconsider your allusion to 2 Cor 3:6. Paul is speaking there of the Mosaic Law, the Ten Commandments which could only expose sin, but could not impart life, thus the letter of the Old Covenant Law kills. And the Spirit gives life, but does so through the Word of God.
The gospel doesn’t kill us, it gives us life. That’s why Jesus said, “It is the Spirit that gives life, the flesh is of no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.”
Connie, THIS IS GREAT NEWS!!!!!
We can trust the Word of God to illuminate our understanding, guide us on our everyday path. We can trust its truths as the very breath of God.
We don’t need to turn to foolish things of this world like “evolutionary psychology” or follow the foolish meanderings of an old fool like Rudolph Bultmann who taught that the Resurrection was not a historical truth.
We can open our bibles, we can trust its Author and we can know that He intends to use that precious word to impart life to us.
That’s my agenda. That people would get that. That’s freeing. It’s life giving. Its Jesus speaking to you and I and Aleea.
Oh, how I love God’s word.
Bultmann, maybe he is totally wrong, but he maintained that the New Testament proclaimed a message more radical than any modern existentialism. I am surprised Bultmann didn’t get himself killed as critical towards National Socialism, mistreatment of Jews, as critical towards dismissal of non-Aryan Christian ministers, as critical towards laws against jews as he was. . . . Bultmann was a God-given masterful exegete, even if he went too far for us in his deconstruction of the Gospel portraits of Jesus. Bultmann was trying to be totally honest and you know he had done his research, way more than I. Many people have not investigated the claims they believe in any really useful, meaningful way, —not with primary source evidence like Bultmann. The thousands of people who have are maybe worth listening too. . . . —Bultmann, many things to disagree with but, when he’s right, he is so, so very right. Exciting insights from a scholar who gave his life to understanding Jesus.
If we think we have all the truth in our back pockets, we will never be trying to find what we think we have already have. Novelty is the devil. People expend great time and effort mastering the skills of Greek and Hebrew exegesis but for what? If one of them really comes up with something new theologically (—like Leslie talking about people getting divorces for *ALL* manner of reasons), it will result in immediate charges of heresy. Go back no more than two hundred years, Leslie’s teachings make her a total heretic (—my words would have already gotten me horribly killed), an enemy of Chrsitianity and a witch to be burned at the stake. To me, as near as I can tell, people saying you can divorce for all manner of reasons are not getting it from the plain sense of the textual evidence (—no matter how many passages are involved), or the historical scholarship, they are using modern logic, reason, evidence, psychology, science and critical thinking skills. . . .The effort against this is solely to hold the fort against the advance of intellectual history. . . .but the locomotive of paleographology and especially archeology will not stop for persons astride the tracks.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like if, somehow, so-called Scientific Creationism should come to dominate professional biology, anthropology, paleontology, medicine and geology? It would be an unmitigated disaster, a nightmare, not because a particular hypothesis would have gained the upper hand, but rather because it would denote a major step backwards in terms of scientific method (—we follow the evidence where it leads). Indeed, it would mean the overt control of science by dogma. People would not be allowed to discover things that disagreed with the Bible, like in the dark ages. I love you James (—always happens when I am consistently praying for people, at least it does for me) but I don’t think the real issues have anything to do with anything we are discussing, that’s like a sideshow for maybe some type of control or maybe even numbing. —Or as Dr. Meier would say: “I want to discuss theology because. . .” Because I don’t know. I guess it could be a numbing device and even God could be a very powerful drug I use to numb myself. I still don’t know why. . . .I love the tenderness, caring, clean-living, prayer, repentance, et.al. in Christianity but maybe it can be gotten with a LOT more honesty about the facts, especially the historical facts of what we actually know. . . .Slavery, divorce, women working, et.al. My point is, however, that churches do not promote beliefs that would find a place in a context of intellectual debate. They wind up cheerleading for highly dubious opinions on historical, scientific, and metaphysical matters, simply on the bases of emotional preference and the inertia of tradition. They demand conformity to these beliefs, and if you cannot swim with the current, then, well sister, maybe you’d be happier in another pool, another lake in fact, the one ablaze with burning sulfur. That’s how I would have been dealt with through 90% of Chrsitian history. You know Christianity did not drop from heaven fully written. It grew and developed year by year. That is not what most Christians have been taught to think, but it is factual. Christianity has always been an evolving story.***
***Re: “The Bible Unearthed,” et.al. —That book blows me away. It is like the boldest and most hard hitting synthesis of Bible and archaeology in maybe hundred years, —a totally honest assessment. Also, Philip R. Davies, “In Search of Ancient Israel” Thomas L. Thompson, “Biblical Archaeology and Israel.” “On the Reliability of the Old Testament,” by Kenneth Kitchen, totally fresh and astonishing insights. — Progress is born of doubt and inquiry. Should a women stay with an abusive “Christian” husband who has not committed adultery? For 90% of Chrsitian history the concensus answer is unless she wants to burn in hell.
Patrick Doyle has an interesting take on speaking for God:
Well, its really, really hard. God is no individuals personal property. Patrick is right, lots and lots of denial. I know I have it too. We all have it including Patrick. We all do. No ones motives are totally pure, especially when most of our motives are in our unconscious (re: Carl Jung: Man and His Symbols + Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious).
. . . Ann L. do you know what the saddest part of all of it is: Giving a person a piece of your mind when all you really wanted to do was give them a piece of your heart. That is the way I feel so often. Real love is what really matters. There is nothing wrong with being wrong. I’m wrong all the time. Contrary opinions are one thing, but contrary facts really get me going. Willful ignorance is something to be ashamed of, not proud. . . . Anyways, I also like his video on Toxic Shame.
I’m not sure but I think the thing to do is love the truth. As Bultmann would say: She who begins by loving Christianity better than truth, will proceed by loving her own sect or church better than Christianity, and end in loving herself better than all. . . . Anyways, we know God loves us but that does not minimize the pain of abuse nor the trauma and unless we are all ashamed of ourselves now and then, we’re not honest. Dr. Meier says: “If you feel ashamed about your need for love & support, it’s because you were made to feel this way as a child. It’s not a sign of weakness to want affirmation, reassurance or someone to count on; these are natural, appropriate needs. Just make sure to be there for yourself first.”
Ann L, Our need to be “greater than” or “less than” is a defense mechanism too. . . some constructed a false self, a masked self. And it is this self that is the overachiever or the dunce, hmm, a tramp or the puritan, the powermonger or the pathetic loser.
. . . Until I went into counseling, I never realized that so many defenses are related to the ego and personal identity of the person doing the defending. Nothing but the sum of ego defenses, protecting and repairing some ridiculous cracked mask that is in constant need of being pieced together. . . . Our beliefs are defense mechanisms too. They often keep us from knowing what we already know but don’t want to really want to know. . . .Regardless of how much faith you have, you can never escape uncertainty. Every judgment teeters on the brink of error. To claim certain, absolute knowledge is to become monstrous. Knowledge is an unending quest at the edge of uncertainty. . . . Life is very hard and reality is an even harder road. That said, reality is always the way to go and that acceptance is the only way to get there. . . . even if it is enough to make your sanity hurt. Many things will make your sanity hurt if you do an exhaustive and balanced study of them:
• the origins, history, and theology of early Christianity
• the archaeology, paleography, manuscript studies related to the New Testament canon
• the Christ-of-Faith vs. the Jesus-of-History
Insanity is everyone expecting you not to fall apart when you find out everything you believed in was so, so different than portrayed. Cruel people offer pity when they no longer feel threatened. Scholarship threatens because it deeply thinks about the issues. . . . However, kind people offer compassion and understanding regardless.
Thanks for that Patrick Doyle video. I think I may need to listen to it again. My h has outwardly changed a lot, but I don’t trust him. And he never apologizes. He talks the talk at church very well, yet he’s always playing subtle games with me and I can’t talk to him about anything that’s actually important to me. He’ll walk away, mumble something, not talk to me for days, then pretend I never said anything. And if I don’t do just what he wants, I get punished in underhanded ways, and much more than the ‘crime’ warrants. By ‘crime’ I mean something like hanging his shirts the wrong way in the closet for 8 years, but he never ever told me he wanted them hung the other way. I’ve simply had to emotionally disconnect and live my life the best I can.
I’m just reading a book called, “The Divine Dance” by Richard Rohr. So many things I’d like to quote from it, that I believe would resonate with many of us. From the Forward by William Paul Young (of The Shack),”Bad theology is like pornography — the imagination of a real relationship without the risk of one…….an exercise in self-gratification that ultimately dehumanizes the self and the community of humanity in order to avoid the painful processes of humbling and trusting. ”
Rohr says that the one common denominator of sociopaths and such is that they are loners. They will not maintain relationships. And that becomes evil after a time.
“Rational certitude is exactly what the scriptures do not offer us. They offer us something much better and an entirely different way of knowing: an intimate relationship, a dark journey, a path where we must discover for ourselves that grace, love, mercy, and forgiveness are absolutely necessary for survival — in an always and forever uncertain world. You only need enough clarity and ground to know how to live without certitude! Yes, we really are saved by faith! People who live in this way never stop growing, are not easily defeated, and frankly, are fun to live with!”
—Absolutely outrageous Connie!!! —Oh NOW, that’s really getting it! . . . . Ooh, really getting it!!! . . . This is what Dr. Meier calls the “—Oh NO, NOT the LOVE —anything but the LOVE! —” moments. I know for me, I get enough real love and caring I will believe a-n-y-t-h-i-n-g. It is all true with enough love and caring relationships attached to it. That makes me really wonder what is going on. . . .re: “Inerrant the Wind: The Evangelical Crisis in Biblical Authority” + “The Pre-Nicene New Testament: Fifty-four Formative Texts.” . . . . Connie, you keep thinking that deeply and I am going to get an absolute break-through (—I pray to God!) re:Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Your Real Beliefs by Dr. Jordan Peterson-style!
First your husband, then I’ll try to apply your great insights to my issues and problems.
“. . . And if I don’t do just what he wants, I get punished in underhanded ways, and much more than the ‘crime’ warrants. By ‘crime’ I mean something like hanging his shirts the wrong way in the closet for 8 years, but he never ever told me he wanted them hung the other way. I’ve simply had to emotionally disconnect and live my life the best I can.”
. . . . . Connie, you probably already know ALL this but that makes me believe it is not about how you hang his shirts. . . . . Look to wherever the energy is ―and you will see what old pain keeps getting re-activated and then you can begin to take the steps to SEE it, and invite your husband to take the responsibility for his own pain, and help him begin to heal it!! Dr. Meier calls this the pie/pizza rule…. If your spouse or child or Aleea does something that really only warrants addressing with 1/8th piece of the pie, but they are throwing the WHOLE thing at you…then that 7/8ths is their own unconscious “baggage” not Connie’s― and the more he over-reacts with you, the less chance you both have of actually addressing the 1/8th that may need to be addressed at some point ―and a MUCH less chance of ever seeing his own stuff because he is so lost in rage. I think about it this way:
* Criticism is the frozen cry of childhood, now put into language; it doesn’t work, but our hardwired old brain lamely persists (―this is his arrested development, we all have pieces of it, —all of us. I certainly do!) Imagine reaming your precious wife out over how the shirts are hanging: ―INSANE!
* Criticism is the most common reaction to frustration in a relationship, and it is the most destructive, a perverse and counterproductive attempt to get one’s needs addressed, ―INSANE part II.
I tell people all the time (—because it so applies to me too!!!): Do you want to always be right, or do you want to be in a relationship? Because you can’t always have both and as I tell them I realize I do it too. You can’t cuddle up and relax, have fun with “being right” after a long day at work. . . . . Men have no understanding what marvelous responders women really are. A woman gets an environment of sincere, ongoing affection, caring, protection, nurture, thoughtfulness and she just blossoms —out responding any man by multiples. Jesus did not come into the world to make bad spouses good. Jesus came into the world to make DEAD spouses alive. —Real life only happens if we confront our own issues(—sins) and are broken by them! ―More stuff for me to work on internally!!!
People who research it say maybe about 90 percent of the frustrations our partners have with us are really about their issues from childhood (—it is NOT about the shirts. —I know you know that already.) . . . . I believe, the Christian view of marriage is that rather than leaving it to find yourself, you find yourself through it. Marriage itself is in essence therapy, and your partner’s needs chart your path to psychological and spiritual wholeness. An atmosphere of loving accountability and support along with zero tolerance for manipulation, abuse, or power and control over another individual, is the optimal environment for biblical peacemaking and relationship repair to take place. So easy to say. . .
BUT, we are all to some degree Propaganda Posters, aren’t we? I know I am. . . . .And there exists such a false distinction between the idea that there are those who are whole and those who have a lack. For, as I always say, the true distinction is between those who hide their lack under a fiction of wholeness (—pride in that case renders faith impossible) and those who are able to fully embrace their brokenness. You would think I could fully embrace my brokenness because I logically know I am. . . it must be my pride somehow. That is what I think is going on with your husband too. He can’t let you be right, healing his childhood issues and he can’t humble himself before God and his precious wife. He would rather be proud than have real love and real forgiveness. Isn’t that mental!!! Pride is really evil stuff. But we all do it. . . . . Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wiser (—maybe, who knows), so I am changing myself.
Connie, it looks like I have used all my WordPress (site software) allowance for this blog post thread, so I will attempt to put the rest of it at the bottom of “How Do I Help A Friend Who Isn’t Strong Enough.” —one blog post back.
It will not post but I can make this short post! . . .Since I can only make a short post, I would think we would define good theology as what is historically true and verifiable versus bad theology which is just making stuff up and anyone who studies it very long sees that lots of it was made-up. I like it too, made-up or not but isn’t what is historically true and real important? I don’t know maybe it is not important. “. . . only need enough clarity and ground to know how to live without certitude! Yes, we really are saved by faith! People who live in this way never stop growing, are not easily defeated, and frankly, are fun to live with!” —See (if you want to) The Idolatry of God: Breaking Our Addiction to Certainty and Satisfaction Paperback – January, 2013 by Dr. Peter Rollins. i.e. It just seems that all truth claims are on an equal footing without evidence that scales with the claims. Faith proves everything (literally everything and anything) including all the claims of Islam, Mormonism, et.al. They are all true by faith, only evidence (—evidence that scales with the claims) helps us sort out what is really, really real. —But I don’t think it is about what is “true” or “real”. Something else is going on and I think it is about LOVE!!! It is all about love and sometimes that gets mixed with theology and faith. All idols rob us of the type of pleasure that we could have if only we were able to free ourselves from the false promise that something will render us complete (—a better marriage, more money, power, etc.) You can easily make an idol out of God Himself (—placing God in the same category as marriage, money, homes, family, success, etc.) with the hopes of eventually not feeling suffering any longer (—just using God instead of money, position, marriage, power —to get stuff even if it is just emotions.) I love emotions! The Good News of Christianity: You can’t be fulfilled; you can’t be made whole; you can’t find certainty. —Not in this world. Instead of God being that which fills the gap at the core of our being, the God testified to in the Scriptures exposes the gap for what it is, an idol —obliterates it, and invites us to participate in an utterly different form of life, one that brings us beyond slavery to ALL idols, even that idol of certainty. —Maybe???
Connie and Aleea — for some reason I can’t reply to either of your posts. But want to let you know I’ve read and appreciate them and the faith journey that each discusses.
I went through quite a walk with those topics 10-15 years ago. We were in a “right-thinking, Bible-believing” fundamentalist church where the surface of love barely covered riptides of personal pain and family dysfunction. But everyone had to go to church 3X a time because that was scriptural, and there was no room for reality. This made church the place where people came to pretend they had perfect lives. Instead of being a safe place to share pain and wrestle with sin and love and God, to seek forgiveness of self, to be loved by neighbors despite flaws, a safe place to find babysteps toward healing (take a breath! Ending this sentence here!)
The atmosphere was fear. Can’t share with your neighbor because love was overshadowed by judgment. Acceptance was plowed over by scripture-based condemnation.
The preacher was a deeply flawed person; that’s do-able. But the constant use of scripture to condemnation, to declare authority, and to judge. Forget it.
The God of my understanding is a helluh lot bigger than that, thank you very much. And that God is not a church tradition, is not bound by some human’s interpretation of a scripture verse, favors discernment over judgment, gives me/you/us grace to err.
That was a scary path to walk, as it went against everything that had been drummed into our heads. We should have coffee somewhere. It would be, I think, a grace-filled conversation–if I may be so bold as to apply that word here, lol.
It has been a scary path – because of the spiritual abuse that was wielded over us for so long. So good to be free, and to be able to discern when it tries to sneak in again.
I agree, it would be fun to get together. It’s hard to find others who have come through all that intact……but it’s a beautiful thing! Thank you for sharing.
Thank you everyone. . . .I have been doing more thinking and w-a-y more praying than responding because I am really trying to consider what you say instead of just saying things. It is too easy to just say things. . . . .I always ask myself, do I really, r-e-a-l-l-y love and want Christ or do I just want the in-love experience and eternal life? Maybe Dr. Meier doesn’t know what she is talking about? I have seriously thought that before. . . . .But something bigger seems wrong if unbelief is a reasonable position and it seems reasonable, not totally crazy. Swallowing intellectual dishonesty is not the same as submitting our wills to the Savior. Do you know what I am saying? What marks a warm devotional feeling as Jesus of Narereth? I have this “feeling in my heart” but the hearts of every other believer in every other faith tradition deceives them. I also think sometimes that Christianity could just be some early attempt at psychoanalysis and psychology. It is really closely related and truth tends to converge and transcend. . . Dr. Jordan Peterson, 30 years as a secular clinical psychologist and secular professor of psychology, PhD in clinical psychology from McGill University, taught at Harvard University, et.al. His top FOUR:
1. Tell the truth.
2. Do not do things that you hate.
3. Act so that you can tell the truth about how you act.
4. Pursue what is meaningful, not what is expedient.
Jesus from the Gospel of Thomas “. . . . These are the secret words which Jesus spoke, and which Judas Thomas, wrote down. . . .Don’t lie, and don’t do what you hate, because all things are disclosed before heaven. After all, there is nothing hidden that will not be revealed, and there is nothing covered up that can remain undisclosed. . . .” —Jesus, Gospel of Thomas Saying #6 From these sayings and “Q” et.al. comes source material for our gospels. Interpretative rewrites of oral tradition. . . . . .Do I really have the peace that passes all understanding? I certainly, consistently do not. Do I really have a victorious life? I certainly, consistently do not. As honestly as you know how, do you have the peace that passes all understanding? Do you really live a consistently victorious life? . . . .Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn’t go away. That’s reality (—unless I’m not thinking correctly). Have you ever tried to prove Christianity wrong or just right? (i.e. I like this idea, let’s prove it correct.) . . . .I love Christianity and I know how to “prove” it right. I have read so many of those books too. I know I can feel better about all of it by ignoring hundreds of years of research and just sticking to confirmation bias but I also know how to show unbelievable issues with it. . . . And sometimes I have the thought that maybe all of us are wrong, maybe we just don’t know enough about the human brain yet. Unless God wants it that way. . . .Then I go back to thinking that Dr. Meier is right and . . . (as above) all this stuff is the equivalent of saying “I want my Mommy.” —i.e. these are ways to keep my mother internalized because she had no faith. The psychological aspects of why people believe, our motivations and secondary gains seem very important too. If you are a pastor there is no way you can lose faith without losing face, you would be considered the devil incarnate by your former congregation. I have found many atheists are the most honest of the human race. These people are unable to live a double life; they are unable to lie to themselves. . . .On the other hand, doubt may not be the enemy of faith at all. God is infinite, beyond our understanding—we better have a truckload of doubts because if you understand Him, maybe you don’t understand Him. Maybe He chooses to reveal Himself in ways that spark questions rather than settling them? We are in a relationship with an infinite God, it is all going to be serious mystery, right? I love Jesus and I have “believing doubt” very imperfect faith and I still move forward with the Lord. Maybe it is wrong but I am going for relational knowledge of God. —What else can any of us do?
To all the women that attacked James.
You are entitled to your thoughts. I Didn’t think a safe place included attacking men or thw Christian faith.
I am surprised the moderator and Leslie permits all these Bible-attacking comments on a supposedly Christian Blog.
Christianity is a living belief. If you can’t accept it, that is your right and privilege, just don’t expect the fruits of the Holy Spirit (love, peace, joy, etc) to flow into your lives or relationships
I fear that the notion of a “safe space” means safe from dissenting opinion and immune from criticism.
I’ve been seeing a lot lately on the phenomenon of “safe spaces” especially on college campuses and I am genuinely worried that some so covet a victim mentality in our nation that those who love the first amendment are headed on hard times.
To be sure, there are people who have been genuinely victimized, and your own experience with your former wife is testimony to that reality.
But there is a difference between acknowledging that one has been wronged (i.e. made a victim) and the mentality that says, “I am the victim, which means I have the right to be agreed with, immunity from criticism and anyone who would express any opinion contrary to my own is re-traumatizing me.”
Part of the problem, I think, is different people have different expectations for the purpose of this blog.
It would appear that some of the ladies here see this blog as their support group and a closed group at that. You and I are are considered interlopers and I really think they resent our presence here. For some ladies, we are simply the wrong gender to say anything that they may be ready to consider at this point in their lives.
As unfair as that may sound, we have to remember that they have been hurt by men in their lives and they may not yet be ready to see men through any other lens than the abuser/victim lens.
Other women appear to see this as their “safe space” their online place to go and tell their stories. Their expectation appears to be that everyone else will affirm their stories and provide no critique because once a dissenting opinion is introduced the space no longer feels “safe.” I actually don’t think they know that they hold a double standard as many appear to feel free to provide their own critique of your posts and my posts.
While that double standard may seem inequitable (and in fact is really is) we also need to remember that some of these women have been or may even still be, in relationships where they are constantly criticized and rarely heard.
What they expect from you and I, I fear we can never give them because you and I can’t heal them. But Jesus can, and His words do heal and that’s what I fear the most. I sense a true resistance to God’s Word among some of them.
I would never have expected that, I don’t think that Leslie fosters such an attitude and I can’t, for the life of me understand why someone would turn to the “Gospel of Thomas” (which is a gnostic, heretical text) when the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are so life giving.
On the other hand, I have encountered women who genuinely see this as a place to learn and grow. They expect to be challenged and feel free to voice their opinions and concerns because they acknowledge that iron sharpens iron. These women are courageous prayer warriors. They stand on the Word of God and they put their trust in Him even as the endure hardship to keep their marriage vows and teach their children the ways of the Lord.
Take heart, Henry. There are ladies here who are women of remarkable character.
Leslie gives us space to have our own voices, especially when we may not have that in our homes if we are still living with an abuser. The need to be right, extensive motive explaining or set oneself up as an authority detracts from the real issue that was the original post. Many of us do find this a safe space to process what is still happening to us in destructive marriages and it does help to communicate with other ladies who are going trough similar experiences.
There was a post circulating online in the last few days called “Enough is Enough” at http://www.garythomas.com, it was very powerful and encouraging to women in abusive circumstances. I look forward to hearing his voice in the future as he defends the oppressed and opposes the epidemic of abuse in our society that our voices are bring into the light! I see Leslie added her comments there too!
I really appreciate Gary Thomas. Yes, women, and men, need their safe space to voice their thoughts and hurts.
I enjoy Leslie ‘s and other women’s voices. Not all men are abusers, and this should also be a safe space for men/women to interact.
James and I know the joy and comfort.of having our faith in a real Savior, Jesus Christ, and we desire all women here.to experience the same benefits of knowing Christ as brother and God as our good.father.in heaven, who bestows blessings on all his children here below!. Have a blessed Day.
Thank you for sharing this!
My Husband Looks at Other Women and I’m Told I’m Crazy….
Wow. For 24 years, I have watched my husband repeatedly ogle other women. Every once in a while, he would admit to it, but mostly, his reaction is always that I’m the crazy one and overly jealous.
Literally, the last time this happened in our marriage, we were at the beach and were watching the sunset over the ocean. My husband had his eye on a paddleboarder whose beautiful figure was silhouetted against the sun. I casually pointed out his staring and he quietly (with the kids around) told me I was crazy for thinking he would look at such a young girl (I have no idea how he knew her age, there was no way to tell, but that was his excuse!). I felt like he didn’t stop, so later that night, I expressed that I felt like he didn’t stop after I pointed out the behavior. He was livid with me, accused me of being “sick” for thinking he would look at a girl our daughter’s age. Anyway, that whole argument was the final straw that led to me separating. Before that, I thought he had been trying to make adjustments and listen to me when I shared my concerns. But this time, he told me he was done “playing by my rules” when I asked him to please not leave the conversation (that I was handling respectfully and calmly). I had told him that I would not pursue him after arguments any longer after he had verbally disrespected me.
The really funny thing is (well, I guess it’s really not funny) that after a few days, I started questioning my decision of separating. I was flipping through my phone looking for a picture and came across pictures of the very event of my husband looking at this girl. I had forgotten that I had asked my younger daughter to take some pictures from behind my husband and my son of them watching the sunset. I have three pictures of her at different positions and his head is directly on her. It was God confirming to me that I can trust what I see with my eyes and hear with my ears and that I don’t need to be trusting what my husband is saying to me right now. I’m still working through that stuff because I have been gaslighted from the very beginning of our relationship.
I know he is blinded and bound by the enemy.
And, after reading more about the dynamic in my relationship, I am also starting to be convinced that some of these situations might have been manufactured in an effort to actually get me to be jealous. For instance, he would accuse me of being jealous, but then would call me to tell me that he went out to dinner at an out-of-town business meeting with 8 women and he was the only man. He called me from a strip club in the first year of our marriage and claimed he had no idea that it would upset me. He has told me numerous stories over the years that would make any woman jealous. I felt like he accused me and was angry at my jealousy, but then got some sort of sick pleasure of watching me get jealous.
All of that stuff has messed with me in many ways emotionally and sexually, too. I need God’s deep healing.
I think the problem within my marriage is that my husband doesn’t think I should be so mad and hurt because in his mind his looking has nothing to do with me. (And he feels he isn’t as bad as other guys, it’s ok so long as it isn’t his main objective, and he still finds me attractive).
If he watches a TV series full of graphic sex and nudity and I feel hurt by it, he doesn’t get why because it has nothing to do with me. He isn’t watching Game of Thrones to see the girls naked because I am not up to par. He isn’t clicking on smutty youtube videos because he is dissatisfied with me. In his mind it has nothing to do with me, and it isn’t like he’s watching “real porn” or “getting off” to it.
He recently told me he went to a strip club several years ago. He told me he only went because he was pressured to by his coworkers and was just trying to get along with them to get through his career training. He said the girls were unattractive and he didn’t have a good time and left as soon as he could. I am hurt and mad, but between him saying he didn’t like it and the fact that his going had nothing to do with me, he doesn’t think I should feel hurt, and in fact, I should feel happy that he felt this way about his experience at a friggin’ strip club!! A strip club!!!!
“You’re just as attractive as those girls,” he says about Game of Thrones. “I don’t watch it for THAT!”
I told him I would need a lifetime subscription to Playgirl to come close to seeing as many naked guys as he has seen naked women.
He doesn’t get it, though. “I still think you’re sexy!” That’s not the point!!! In fact, that is s vile thing to say, as if he is some sort of redeemed of my sacred marital sexuality!!
It has nothing to do with me, he says, but therein is the point. When it has nothing to do with his wife it means a man isn’t even thinking about her, about their vows, about God’s commands concerning marriage and sex and fornication and adultery. He is only thinking about himself.
It cheapens God’s design for sex and intimacy within marriage. Every unnecessary, willingly viewed naked female form and sexual situation outside of our sacred and exclusive marriage bed is another arrow in the heart of marriage and love. It is another sip of poison, slowly destroying. It has EVERYTHING to do with me.
I want an amazing EXCLUSIVE. sex life with my husband, unhindered, unaffected, untainted, but how can we when almost every day he sees a woman in some state of undress and/or sexual situation within his control to not put before his eyes.
“I can’t help it,” he says. “I don’t direct the movie. It isn’t like I am watching the Playboy channel.” And he shuts the door to the bedroom for hours at a time while I handle life beyond, alone with our children and the messes he and the kids left behind. And while I sit at the table helping them with homework, I hear the unmistakable sounds of a sex scene and some other woman moaning in orgasm in my bedroom. But, she is behind the glass of the TV screen, so it doesn’t “count.” In my broken heart it matters very much.
But I am just a crazy, jealous, insecure wife, apparently.
Wow, Libl, I am so sorry. Can so relate to a LOT of what you wrote here, although my husband didn’t take it to the extremes (at least in front of me) that yours does.
I’ve heard a lot of the same lines. “You’re just as sexy, beautiful, etc.”….have also heard him demean other women if I saw that he was looking at someone – “I wasn’t looking at her, she’s getting so old these days anyway”…..or “I wasn’t looking at her, her legs were like tree trunks”…..NOT “I wasn’t looking at her because I value YOU and our relationship.” No, the only reason he “wasn’t looking” was that they were somehow physically defective in his eyes.
I have said numerous times to my husband over the years that if I were in a car accident and was physically disfigured, I didn’t feel confident he would want me anymore. He has also point-blank told me in no uncertain terms that if I were to gain too much weight, it would probably be a deal-breaker for him.
Blahhh…..hard to wake up to the reality of my marriage.
My wife and I have been married for a little over 27 years. During that time I have hurt her repeatedly. Never intentionally. I have looked at other women often and would lie about it. Only later to confess that she was right.
I thought I had gotten better about it, but she tells me she sees me donut continually. And, she says, since I do it right in front of her, who knows what I do when she’s not around. Btw, I teach in an inner city public high school. Even though we have uniforms, the girls can dress quite immodestly.
She often will call me out on looking at women when I have absolutely no idea I am doing it. I literally do not know I am looking at other women. I’m serious!
She thinks I’m denying it, but I am being honest and telling her I don’t even realize I’m looking.
How can I do better when I don’t even realize I’m doing it??
I don’t want to hurt her. I love her dearly, but my marriage is hanging by the narrowest of threads.
I AM A MAN. WARNING: PLEASE READ BEYOND THE INTRO. THE INTRO TIES TO MY OPINION ABOUT THIS WOMAN’S HUSBAND.
Since the age of 10, I have had girls/women drawn to me. According to most women, they rate me between a 9-10. I’m not the tallest guy, 5’9″. I’m do have a very nice body, according to most women. I’m muscular. If you look up any of the fitness models on Instagram, who are in great shape, you have seen my body.
When I’m in public, women look, or stare at me all the time. They do it in front of their husbands/boyfriends/or even partners.
I’m a married man of 17 years this year. A Christian, and father. We attend Church 3 times a week. Twice on Sunday, and a midweek service.
Am I a saint, yes. Perfect FAR from it.
The last Church we attended for 15 years, I spent a large portion of that time dodging some of the Pastors wives, saint’s wives, and at times, the senior Pastor’s wife.
WHAT’S SAD, is I had to navigate my oldest son and only daughter through the same mess, among Evangelist Husbands and Wives.
My wife is a very attractive woman, We were called the “Hollywood Family” (not proud of it, although I get the “compliment”). My wife, was called the “Kim Kardashian” (again, not a compliment) of the Church denomination we are a part of.
Now that sort of a foundation is layed. I spent a large part of my marriage on the side of the woman. My wife look at other men.
BEFORE I DIVE INTO THAT, let me address this woman concern form a mans perspective.
#1: A man who truly respects is wife, WON’T LOOK AT OTHER WOMEN IN HER PRESENCE. He will also train himself not to do it, while outside of her presence.
#2: DO ALL MEN LOOK AT WOMEN THEY FIND ATTRACTIVE? Yes. Intentionally? Majority (like 90%) of the times, no. THERE IS A BIG DIFFERENCE BETWEEN doing it intentionally, and non-intentionally (is truly unaware that he’s doing it).
SIDE NOTE: I never bought into the idea that “all men look around”, until I started to noticed it from some of my guy buddy’s. To test it, I would asked them something like, “hey you know the woman who just past us”? (the woman, I just saw their eyes journeying up and down her body). And, most of the times, they would say, “i don’t know who you’re talking about” (telling the truth).
Then, I conducted some experiments on myself. I found that my eyes would journey to a woman’s face, hip area, then over all body. At times, I didn’t feel an attraction toward the woman, either feel that she was attractive. Scary huh?. I’m being honest.
#3: If your husband is consistently looking around intentionally, more likely than not, you have a BIGGER problem on your hands than you may be willing to come to grips with. In the entrepreneur/influencer space, we call this buying into your own PR. When a man (or woman) buys into his own attractiveness, the power of his attractiveness, influence, power, position, status, etc, we enters another level of a danger zone.
Most people, men and woman alike, won’t be honest with themselves.
When, I lived in Los Angeles county, while in a Ross department store, I ran into two celebrities. I guess they were dating. The woman was an American sex symbol in her time. The guy, was trying on clothes. I guess, she was picking clothes out for him. But, she was trailing me, staring at me, with a very sexual look on her face.
Simi long story short. I heard the male actor she was with call me name, I walked up to the both of them, to meet them and confirm their identity. And yes, it was this hot American sexy symbol.
Here’s how I took that encounter with her. Although, I’m a good-looking guy. It wasn’t about me and my looks, as much as it was about her and HER LUST. She could’ve seen a great looking homeless guy (a lot in LA area), and if she wanted him, she would have perhaps perused him too.
Most men lack the courage enough to be that honest with themselves. They would have made it about THEM ( I’m just so fill in the blank), and not acknowledged that LUST has no boundaries.
#4: Just because “all men look around”, doesn’t mean any woman should tolerate it. For her husband to tell her that she’s crazy, is CRAZY. How could he play such a wicked game with his wife, a woman of 30 years. That is scum low. He’s not a man, he’s not OWNING his actions. At least, if he confessed his weakness, and worked to get over it (it’s a simple decision, “I REFUSE TO DISRESPECT MY WIFE”), they can GROW beyond that hiccup in their relationship.
This doesn’t only happen with men. Women, also can drag their marriage, and family through the mud, by looking and lying.
It’s absolutely unacceptable. Period!
The looking can truly be a weakness. The “your crazy”, and/or lying, is a tell tell sign of a much bigger problem.
Hope this helped.
You say that you/men still find other women attractive and yet you also said that it should just be stopped. I was wondering how you would handle it/yourself when you do notice someone? I was just curious about your post since all I hear is that “all men look” (so I will) from men and that I’m delirious and have yet to prove that there is one man that doesn’t look. Thank you
Well to begin with I’m with my fiance we’ve been together for long I got pregnant we’ve got a house there’s this female neighbour next to our door we both started having friendship with her. Everything was good we got out we watched movies then couple days I got seriously jealous my fiance think is my hormones .Also he says to me he would never cheat on me they are just only friends .So she’s been backed off because she says to him she see In me that she doesn’t want to make me stress because of the baby . So today I went to speak to her to stop backing off cause she’s nice person to me and I saw today she was wearing a hoodie of not hiding her cleaverage .I Dont know what’s going on but I’m a lot stressed. My fiance always says I wont cheat on you and he give me examples like he sleep only with me or have sex with me .
My husband has as a porn addiction. Diagnosed by his therapist. And I am having a hard time coping. I am supporting him and his effort to get better but more information keeps leaking out. Last night I found out that he would mentally undress women a few times a week. He would do it at work or even when we are out and about. I’ve notice him staring a few times and I don’t even tolerate glancing. For months I’ve told him that he is staring and he swears he isn’t but has still made an effort to comply. You see something, look away. But now I know I’m NOT CRAZY and he WAS gawking at these women… I’m just lost. Obviously there is already a certain amount of distrust because of his addiction but things just keep piling up and I’m running out of sympathy for him. 😞
Of course it’s hard to be married to someone like this. I’d encourage you to read Sheri Keffer’s book Intimate Deception about sexual betrayal. IT’s excellent.
My husband is a sex offender, I knew about it when I met him, however when I asked he made it seem like it was not his fault. When we first started he told me older men desire younger women. 1st red flag, especially because I’m 3 yes older than he is. We went to my nephew birthday party and there was a pretty young lady about 12 yrs old, and he started sweating and staring. Yes I felt so embarrassed I stopped going to birthday parties, dancing and doing the things I loved to do. I’m embarrassed at the grocery stores he stares., At family functions he stares at my female friends and family, and ignores me. I tried to change my appearance on several occasions to make him notice me. But I know I can never compete. He’s sick, and I have to leave him.
I understand u completely my husband of 5 yrs almost went to prison for comments he made to a step daughter in a previous marriage he explained it was a mistake a one time thing after I learned about it thru the ex wife he has threw me to the curb 3 mos after we married I have stayed prayed for my husband to change & love me he never noticed me and sex is non existent at this point I’m planning on leaving after 5 yrs of pain I have lost all feelings of a,woman men like this do not deserve a faithful loving wife
Thank you so much for your thoughtful and caring response to this writer. I have been searching the internet for a view point that respects women’s concerns about their male partners looking at other women when they are out together. All of the articles that I have found tell the woman, in one way or another, to get over it. I appreciate your view that validates and gives importance to a woman’s feelings in this matter.
I get sick of reading the articles “every man does it, ha can’t help it. It’s an easy out for them.
Rebecca, I feel your frustrations and your pain sister. Society today condones this behavior. They don’t have male role models to teach them it’s wrong from a young age. They just expect us to keep on taking it. So sad really. We love them, don’t want to leave and be on our own or with a different man who may also do this. So what’s a girl to do? I just don’t know
just keep looking like they hope that the next one will be the better one ..
My husband also does this. I confronted him and he said I need to see a psychiatrist for my insecurities. I said I would go if he came with me. He agreed and in our first session my husband received a text message from a flirty woman whom I has asked him not to contact. He opened it in the session and I saw it and said that this was constant in our marriage. He got mad and turned his back away from me. The psychiatrist asked him about this. My husband said he received texts like this all the time, but he knew where his boundaries were. The psychiatrist said this was disrespectful to me and our marriage. My husband divorced me over this. The blind refuse to see and sometimes it’s best to move on if we respect ourselves.
Earlier in my marriage my husband would point out other women to me and compliment a certain aspect about their appearance he liked. Anything from her figure, to her nails, to her shoes, hairstyle, makeup, you name it. This puzzled and confused me for awhile but I told myself at least he is being positive/sincere in his remarks and not catty or negative or mean. It dawned on me finally (after lots of prayer and meeting with our pastor’s wife) what this was all about…it was his way of letting me know what his preferences are. He’s not the type of guy to outright express these things to me in a normal conversation at home…so I had to ask God to please read his mind for me. So maybe other men do this too, I dunno. Thank you for this post.
True my husband also does d same thing and tells me it’s in my head
Thank you for your article. I recently got married, and have already been grappling with this issue. My husband knows he is good-looking, and will make comments to me about all of the women that check him out. I also get checked out by men (and women), but wouldn’t dream of telling him this, because I don’t want to hurt him and don’t see the benefit of telling him.
I’m trying not to confuse his self-confidence for narcissism (I know my husband loves me), but it really sucks to hear these comments, all the same. I told him how I feel and that I feel his telling me about other women doesn’t benefit our marriage, but he still doesn’t understand why I am upset. He says that he is just trying to be “open” with me, and that I am not being receptive. While I acknowledge to him that I appreciate his transparency, I maintain that I still don’t see any benefit to his actions, despite my being open-minded. I guess I don’t see full transparency between a couple as needing to include being made aware of who turns my husband on and vice versa. Even though neither parties are acting on it (that would be a different issue entirely), I don’t see the utility.
My boyfriend of 4 years have a good relationship. We were friends for several years previously, and so our relationship is very open & we have great communication in our relationship.. I will admit I have always had some sort of trust issues due to my past but we worked through them , my issue is that we have gotten into plenty of arguments since we have been together about him making small conversations with people online, liking girls pictures, pretty much everything that has to do with other females. I always addressed him about it and he just tries to make me feel like I have problems and I’m insecure and I don’t trust him. Every time we go out he checks out other women right in front of me & acts like he does not, like I’m seeing things or blowing things way out of proportion. Last night I made it a fact to have a good night out because we haven’t been out in awhile, and not even long of us being there were standing outside and he checks out a female as she walks by, right in front of me and didn’t even try to hide it. I told him over and over again I know you check out other women, all men do, but right in front of me is disrespectful.. he doesn’t take random pics of me , he doesn’t make me feel as beautiful as I could feel… idk if I’m just being petty or what… I just need any advice
It’s time to move on.
I’m sure he knows he is doing this, he is turning to look at them . That’s disrespectful and you know it. You want to keep hoping that he will stop but he won’t even admit that he is looking at other women with you by his side. It’s all about what he wants. I don’t think he will ever put your feelings first even if he cares about you he cares about himself more.
My advice would be don’t spend 30 years wishing hoping pleading begging for him to stop acting like this. Move on and find a more respectful man.
RUN RUN RUN FROM THAT RELATIONSHIP. ITS NOT GOING TO CHANGE, IT WILL ONLY GET WORSE.
Hi I was gonna share with my husband that I seen him looking at couple of girls tonight at the gym ..but when were gonna talk he said herevwe go again..he said every night its always one thing or another honestly I know things have been surfacing that need to be addressed so yes theres been alot talking but tonight I just don’t know how to feel .. he said he just wants to go to sleep in peace.. any advice
Ah, Michelle, I totally get it and can relate. Somehow we as the women are made to feel blame for bringing these things up. (Oh pesky women wanting our men to adore us, like high value lady’s, the nerve). Like we are just supposed to accept it because they are a man and see nothing wrong with it. I think modern day society has a lot to do with it. Since they were little boys women are displayed as “sexual eye candy” everywhere. The community around us doesn’t think poorly of a man who does this, other men approvingly go along with it and women accept it and even welcome the attention. Gads, it’s even happening in churches …. Where are the Real Men to set them straight?… There is no one but “us” as their partners to plead for the respect we so deserve. Yet, they just don’t care enough to give it. …. It’s heart wrenching and actually pretty depressing. Can’t they just notice and politely look the other way, for us and for themselves too.
I experienced the same thing for years and my husband repeatedly said that he wasn’t looking. I am a crushed woman right now. I was still grieving his loss from last June from cancer and right before Thanksgiving I discovered a picture of another woman. On the back it said “just me”. It has brought back memories of finding another picture years ago and also seeing one up on the wall of his office during an unannounced visit. Also I found a note in his pocket while getting clothes ready to wash which said in writing that looked like his “I want to make you alittle Irish ” He tried to grab it from my hand and said he found it on the floor at work. There were many many nights when he came home very late and always had an excuse. For a few years before his surgery for prostate cancer he refused a physical relationship with me saying that I told him he was hurting me physically during sex. I tried to explain what I thought he could do to help but we just talked in circles. After his surgery he tried twice but couldn’t and I wondered if it was because he really that he didn’t want to.
There didn’t seem to be the love behind it. We were married over 50 years. I know that I have to go on and heel but it seems impossible. There were alot of great things about him and everyone liked him. We had some good times. Took some nice little trips on occasion but I felt more like a friend or roommate than a wife. I had such Hope’s and dreams for my marriage and feel defeated when I look back.
Kathy… as I read your post my heart ached. I hope you let him go so you can move on and be happy.
I read the article above, “My husband looks at other women and I’m told I’m crazy,” but what if this happens at church?
I brought it up to him before, and his response is one that would be detrimental. Initially, he denies it intensely, and says that I’m imagining it. He then says that he just won’t go to church anymore, so he won’t be accused of sneaking repeated glances at, in this case a particular woman.
So, what now?
Its so weird you say that because mine does the same. Im not sure if its because we have had differences in the past or if its me because after having my kids I feel unattractive.
I was attending a church for a few years. A certain women and my husband would stare into each other’s eyes. It was my daughter’s Sunday school teacher and of course my daughter would see the same thing. Now my daughter refuses to attend church and will never go back to church with him. Mind you we argued about this for 3 years every Sunday.
I lost my mom recently and I now want a divorce. Non of family has my back on it. Not sure what to do?
I’m so sorry. That’s not a very church like atmosphere where you don’t feel safe and loved
I always catch my husband looking at other women even when he’s with me and now I can see on his phone that even if it’s Facebook Instagram tick-tock he’s looking at their profiles and they look nothing like me and when I confront him about it he says I’m just making a big deal about it or no I’m not looking at them or not following them and he gets upset about me and it’s me making a big deal what does that mean I’m tired of feeling like I’m not enough for him physically ?
Ugh I feel like no matter what we do, what we look like, men will always look at other women. It’s in their stupid genetics. It’s so hurtful. Obviously I’m up sick right now because I tried so hard to look amazing for our dinner out tonight and he spent the entire evening looking at an (admittedly gorgeous) woman. I felt so worthless. I thought I looked hot until I saw her and my husbands reaction to her. Now I don’t know why I even tried.
Your husband was disrespectful to you. It’s not in his genes, it’s in his heart. Yes we are all attracted to beauty. God has wired us to enjoy looking at beautiful things. However, Jesus didn’t “look” at women. He “saw” them. There you were, eager for your husband to see you, not “look” at you. To see your beauty inside and out but he was busy gawking at something because his heart was disrespectful of you, of her and of his own self as a good man and husband. Don’t for a second blame yourself.
Most males stare to please what their dumb testosterone desires. And yes they can control Lusting, but They Don’t Want To!! It is why I don’t care about going out on dates, as often, anymore. This act hit my nerve. So you either, give him a taste of his own med… or pull away from this selfish disrespect.
Jesus tells us how to respond to other’s sin in Matthew 18:15-20, and First Corinthians 5 also gives us instruction. We talk to our spouse about their sin of lusting after other women. If our husband doesn’t listen, we take a witness to talk to him with us, and if he still refuses to listen, we tell the church, and if the husband refuses to listen to the church, Jesus, in Matthew 5, and First Corinthians say to disassociate from the person who won’t listen or repent. (Some won’t need to tell the church if the husband isn’t impacted by that. Also, some churches do not follow scripture.)
The husband’s soul and relationship with God is more important than a “marriage” in which the man is sexually immoral. Jesus speaks clearly about these issues in Matthew 5. In verse 28, Jesus says that the man who looks lustfully at a woman has committed adultery, and Jesus, in verse 32 says that one can divorce for sexual immorality. Jesus loves us and understands the hurt involved in lust and adultery so he gives us this Godly way of responding to it.
Although we can not know for sure what a husband is thinking when he repeatedly looks at other women, we can read these verses to him and tell him we discern that he is lusting and needs to stop. And we can follow scripture as stated above.
A man CAN choose to obey God and stop repeatedly looking at and/or ogling other women, or he can choose to disobey God and jeopardize his relationship with God.
It is clear throughout the Bible that God despises the wickedness of sexual immorality and commands that we not commit adultery.
It seems that the men who lust after other women really are in the marriage for the perks they can get out of it and will take or leave the marriage because of their lack of commitment to God and their wife.
It is the wife who has to decide how to respond to her husband’s sinful lifestyle as scripture instructs. A boundary a wife would have is for the husband to quit repeatedly looking at other women. It would be hard for a man to lust after a woman he is not looking at, but easier for him to lust if he repeatedly looks back at her.
A wife’s scriptural response to her husband’s sinful lifestyle MAY save his spirit on the day of the Lord, as First Corinthians 5:5 says. I believe this means that the husband MAY repent and be saved spiritually if we follow scripture, but if we don’t follow scripture there is less of a chance that the husband would ever repent and have his spirit be saved on the day of the Lord.
We can only do our part, as the Bible says, and pray that the man struggling with the sin of lust will repent and choose to love God and love his wife as God commands.
First Corinthians 13 tells us what love is. Verse 7 says that love “always protects”. When a wife tells her husband that it hurts her when he repeatedly gawks, looks at, ogles another woman, and he refuses to stop doing it, it is apparent that the husband does not love his wife because love does not act this way.
Love protects. Love does not destroy and purposefully inflict undo pain. When a husband refuses to quit ogling other women, he sends a clear message that his heart is not right with God because he is choosing not to love his wife or obey God.
Although lust is a sin and needs to be addressed in and of itself, common sense tells us that blatantly inflicting pain on another is not love and is sinful. This sin also needs to be addressed.
Matthew 5:28,32; 1 Corinthians 5; Matthew 18:15-20 are some scriptures that give instruction on how to respond to a husband who refuses to repent from a sinful lifestyle of blatantly inflicting undo pain on another as well as lusting.
Hello I have a question
If we love our husbands, this is something that must be addressed with them. Alright, maybe not with a club, but with a broken spirit, and a wounded heart. (Yup, I purposely meant to apply ‘broken’ to spirit and not heart!).
We need to share the truth of this particular sin with them, through our devotion and love. As wives, Proverbs 16:24, is only one of several, words of wisdom on how to handle this approach, and it ensures healing. Scripture may not explain how often this step may take, but it does tell us how often we are to forgive. Jesus uses a hyperbole to tell us how often to forgive others in Matthew 18:22.
Think of exactly what it is that is on your heart and how your husband can help bring closure to this problem. Most importantly, be consistent in prayer and seeking the Lord!
When your husband is unable to communicate….He cannot express…neither he understands what I say. This is a difficult personality. How do I deal with this..
Men love to tell us we’re crazy when they look at other women. I’d rather be alone than deal with this! My boyfriend recently did this, not just glancing but ogling several times and I told him it’s over. He keeps saying I’m crazy yet bought roses and a card. Which I promptly ripped up and threw at him. If he wants something else he can go find it. Men look at me ALL THE TIME and I never do it back. It’s about respect!
Oh my god yes!!! I am to in . 3 kids , married…
But yes , it was so satisfying to read this. You know you are worth it and I love it. Don’t know why my husband does this if he knows it hurts me.
Rocio… he does it because he doesn’t care how it makes you feel and because he knows he can do it and get away with it. Plain and simple. So there are two options here: you put up with his bs. Or you put your foot down and demand respect and if he doesn’t commit … then it’s time to leave. There’s no compromise to this situation. But will you do either? Also, I would put the focus on yourself. It seems like the more we complain about these issues to them, it empowers them and boosts their ego. Yet, it destroys us mentality, emotionally and even physically. No man is worth it.
I love my husband. I know men look at women. I do love myself and have never felt insecure until
his looking has become so obvious that it’s embarrassing. I don’t know what to do anymore. He gaslights me and acts like it’s all in my head and turns it around that there is something wrong with me. This is how I feel…..
I wonder if he knows It hurts me when it’s obvious he checks out other women but thinks I am blind to this?-But my eyes can see.
I wonder if his eyes ever linger on me and shine with lust like they do as his gaze follows other women over and over. Not once, not twice, just continual glances up and down. -It Destroys Me.
I wonder if he realizes that his actions speak louder than the “I love you” he whispers to me after sex.-My Heart Feels empty
I wonder if he understands yes, I give him sex but I no longer anticipate the beauty of our lovemaking or want to initiate it, because I know I can’t compete with perfect women he has shown me over and over he desires rather than me.-I Am Deeply Hurt.
I wonder if he knows long after he sleeps I often cry into my pillow because no matter how many times he promises to change, he cares more about pleasuring himself by checking out other women than respecting me.-Tears wet my pillow.
I wonder if he understands how humiliating it is, when I’m by his side yet he chooses to give other women he doesn’t even know attention.-I Feel Invisible.
I wonder if he thinks about the women he has screenshots of, kept photos of, checked out…when he is suppose to be desiring me, his own wife. I can guarantee if he does this while I’m with him it’s 100 fold when I’m not with him. I feel Used.
I wonder if he realizes that there are other men who would want me and not make me compete for their attention or crush my heart.-I’m Worth It
I wonder if My heart can survive getting crushed over and over as I witness his ogling of other women. I’m Devastated.
I wonder if I should have seen the red flags early on as he continually checked out other woman’s even while we dated.-I’m in Turmoil.
I wonder if he cares that I felt like this beautiful flower before I met him and now I feel like an ugly weed who wants to hide.-Feelings are Fading.
I wonder if he realizes that I once was this passionate, vibrant woman who uninhibitedly loved sex and felt sexy, but now I just want to hide. I feel Disrespected.
I wonder if him putting his pleasure above the pain he causes me is worth it to him.-I Feel Worthless.
I wonder if I can survive this same scenario he puts me through over and over until finally, I just become a shell of what I once was. I Am Empty.
Dear Rebecca, your text touched my heart deeply. It is exactly how I feel. I really don’t feel able to manage the way he makes me feel.
I know exactly how u feel and this is how I feel I don’t know what to do she’ll I stay or she’ll I go and I have told him I’m sure there is someone out there who will appreciate me for who I am and would be happy to be with me and have eyes for me it’s killing me inside
I’ve been with my husband for 41 years and believe me I am just a shell. It’s still going on at 64years old. I would tell young women to run run run.
I believe you Becky. Many men, regardless of older age, will continue to do those things. God forbid women do the same though, they wouldn’t put up with such disrespect.
I agree with you girl
Here is my story/testimony about this. I used to deal with my husband’s wandering eye a lot and my husband would deny it every time. He would say I’m not going to admit to something that you want me to admit to. It would just build an anger in me and when I would let out my frustration, I was told that I just wasn’t healed from my past. Me and my husband have only been married for one year. I think what helped is that I said something to him about this in the early months of marriage. The Holy Spirit actually told me that my husband would look at other women because he is insecure about himself. So basically, if a spouse can make their spouse feel insecure or “not good enough” it’s because really and truly, that spouse is insecure about themselves and think they think they’re not good enough in a lot of areas. I used to feel insecure about myself when my husband would look at other women… all because he was insecure within himself to begin with. This is not to put him down because of his struggle, but it sure helped me even though we both still had to grow from this with God’s help. My husband believes in us telling each other our insecurities. So after he told me his insecurities some time ago, one day I was at my breaking point with his wandering eye. So I cried out to God and said I couldn’t take anymore and what do I need to do. Holy Spirit began to calm me down and revealed to me and brought back to my remembrance about how my husband is still insecure in many ways. This didn’t make it okay though. This was not an excuse. It used to be bad to the point to where my husband would even look at my sister who I am very close to. He would basically check out anyone with a big butt or nice body. I had to seek healing from God and look online for advice just like this website. Even though me and my husband have only been married for a year… In the earlier months, this would happen with his wandering eye. Actually, this situation is the only topic me and my husband would have arguments about… him looking at other women. He would tell me at times that I didn’t trust him and then sometimes he would quote a scripture to me about not letting my thoughts or feelings control me. Blah blah blah. I hated that and I noticed an anger grew in me. We are suppose to be starting our own church soon and becoming Pastors. So months ago things got better when I really had to step up and tell him that I’m not Pastoring a church with you or going out in public with you anymore until this changes. I hated sitting in church and going on family outings and feeling very small because he would look at others. But my husband really wants to please God and be real with himself so he has changed greatly and he told me to just let him know if I ever feel he is looking at someone else or giving attention to someone else so he can fix it. So I believe that if anyone wants to really please God, they will work on themselves and their habits and decide to let Holy Spirit help them change. But if one spouse doesn’t want to change, yes that will destroy the other spouse mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually. I’m praying for all who have to experience this.
Amen. Praise the Lord! 💜✝️🙌🙏
Yes … this is what excetly same thing I’m going through like same your situation…. I can i do to help my marriage to make our life better he keep tell me I bored with this kind of ladies .stop thinking like that in ur head and be happy with me . He kept deny .. what cna I do ??? I’m so hurt and unless and make me feel low . I want him to change he keep deny that nothing wrong with me .. sighhhhhh . How can I get him attention to me than what his lying doing to him . Please help me ??? I have no friends or anyone to talk to about my situation…. Im lost in words sigh …
Thank you so much Mrs. Rebecca for sharing! You are totally amazing and I appreciate you. Your willingness to share the pain and turmoil that fight with on a everyday bases is profound. You wrote what my heart feels every single day. Thank you for your poetic masterpiece. I will read this to remind myself that I am not crazy and that of who I use to be.
Stop the madness and let him go. Let him get with one of these dream boats and you keep your self respect and dignity and go find a REAL man. A real man would never want his wife to feel like this. It’s evil. Go back to feeling Luke that flower you once were and let him find someone new. You will thank your lucky stars. No one deserves that.
You captured exactly how I feel. 🙁 glad I found this space of women sharing. Before I was in a “male” article about why they stare and that is “normal” and nothing to do with you. Blah , blah Blah . I believe there ARE good men that don’t stare because I have seen it. The “all men do it” is what the men that do it say. I feel so depressed when my husband does that . And angry. Sometimes want to be like him and see how he likes it. But I can’t because I know is disrespectful obviously unlike him. Can you just imagine if we stared at a man’s front pants down south. Long enough for husband to catch us on purpose and say “ honey , no I wasn’t ( even though head was so down , overly obvious:) and just say no it is totally normal me checking his size, it has nothing to do with you:))) oh my god I would loveeeee for someone to do this experiment. Then have FEMALE pschycologist saying oh yes totally normal. ;)))) I recently notice on my Netflix, that husband watches those Latin shows with lots of woman in lingerie . Then of course I go and see prime, YouTube and he has bunch of shows that married or bf shouldn’t watch out of respect for his wife or gf. Sorry this is so long but it is sooo embarrassing to say this to anybody in real life. So embarrassing my husband undresses Girls with his looks. Last time we couldn’t watch a movie because it had a story line of missing daughter and we recently had our Thirs child and first daughter . He was like no let’s not watch it, I was like okay. But he has no problem putting his daughter out of mind let alone his freaking wife when he watches barely dress women.
Thank you ALL for these contributions. I’ve been married 34 yrs and these last 7 have been a game changer. In the early years I believed my husband to be my “knight in shining armour”. I sold my home to use as down payment on future homes each time trading up. 16 yrs after tying the knot, I agreed to leave family and friends behind to move to Tennessee when his dad got sick. I knew mom was going to need help. Once we crossed the state line everything changed. He started a new job and began introducing me (disrespectful) as “the wife”; as if I was a material possession. Few yrs later, My youngest grandchild was being born and I took quick flight to Chicago to help my daughter. When I came back, we went to dinner and it was obvious he’d been “tipping well” while dining there in my absence. Our waitress was so comfortable delivering his food, she laid her chest on his back when she reached around his neck. I was waiting for her to reach in his lap for the napkin and tuck it under his chin. During this time, I also learned from a coworker about the “slutty” behavior of one of his coworkers. Evidently Ginger pleases anyone at that factory regardless if they’re married or not. Must be one of those unspoken perks. 3 yrs later he “screwed up” while I watched. I always wondered why he asked “do we need anything from the store” before I get home. While my car was being serviced one day, we rode home together and I discovered he made a friend at that store. Pay close attention here. In 27 yrs of marriage, and several hundred shopping trips, that man NEVER ONCE returned the shopping cart to the coral, but instead was one of those whole left the basket to roll around the lot. Not this night. He instructed me to “go sit in the truck” after we both unloaded the bags. He quickly and carefully walked the basket to the coral which was almost to the entry. There he stood for 60-75 seconds or more, gawking through the plate glass window at her backside. When questioned, he lied about his disrespectful behavior and said I’m the crazy one. 7 1/2 yrs later he admitted he was attracted to her. I’ve also learned (recently) I’m Not his first priority and -in his own words- he has obligations that take precedence over our marriage. I’ve done so much to help this man climb up from trailer trash and feel like such a fool for ever believing in him. Have tried to address my hurt and he runs out ANYWHERE. Since I’ve worked nonstop after moving to TN, I have no friends, only his family (have discovered recently where he’s learned lying from). Now retired, I have no one to talk to. Not sure if I should leave with the minimal dignity I have left, or try to fix this by myself. I desperately need another vehicle. I asked for an Older chevy Tahoe. He bought a Pathfinder (scrappy Nissan). I’d like to drive it off a bridge. Maybe then the hurt will stop.
I read your post regarding your husband looking at a woman at the grocery store. It’s so upsetting to read such thing especially when a wife of x amount of years has devoted her all to him. I just wanted you to know that even though you feel like you have no friends etc… I’m here for you. I can be your cyber buddy. I’m a wife too. Been married for 26 yrs with 4 daughters and got married really young at the age of 17. I’ve had my us and downs so o can totally understand your feelings. If you want to talk by text, email or by phone. … just reach out.
I will be your friend I’m here in TN also… I feel so disrespected most all of the time.
I am in Tn as well. I feel like this too. My situation is similar. Moved to Tn and I have no friends or family. I feel like I a drowning.
My wife accuses me of doing this (and being in denial) – but I don’t!!! Last week we were stopped at traffic lights. I was watching for the light to go green. There was a woman obscured to me by the corner pillar of the car, but visible to her in the passenger seat. She accused me of watching her – the woman I hadn’t even seen until I moved my body to see what she was talking about. If I go to the supermarket to buy milk and bread, she accuses me of going there to “get stimulated” (I don’t, and I have told her so – she is the only one who stimulates me). Almost every time we go to the shops she accuses me of “following the pretties up and down the isles” – I don’t take much notice of them, except that they are there and have every right to do their shopping as I have to do mine (ours). I have deliberately taken notice of how I react, and my reaction to a “pretty woman” is no different to how I would react if it was a man in the same situation.
My question, is how do I set boundaries here???
Stop the madness and let him go. Let him get with one of these dream boats and you keep your self respect and dignity and go find a REAL man. A real man would never want his wife to feel like this. It’s evil. Go back to feeling like that flower you once were and let him find someone new. You will thank your lucky stars. No one deserves that.
My husband did every one of these things so I’m relieved to read this does happen with men other than my husband!!
These types of men that think they can get away with this behavior are damaged mentally and need additional help getting through this. That is what I’ve learned.
To me, confronting him about the situation was worth whatever I had to go through and it was a lot. I had purposed in my heart I’d rather divorce than let this type of behavior continue.
We’d been married 40 years when one day I noticed it appeared he was more interested in staring at other women than focusing on me and our conversations.
There were other questionable behaviors I noticed as well. He has a sociable personality but it seemed as if he was spending more time talking to the waitresses than necessary and while at home working in the yard he was always speaking to all the ladies and chatting with them as they walk down the street. Things like that.
Over approximately a year or so I realize that these things were happening and not just my imagination. From there I had questioned him every time I noticed the behavior. He’d deny it every time. At that point, I knew divorce was imminent as he continued this behavior.
My last hope, I decided to get a marriage therapist. Therapists have techniques, worksheets all sorts of things to bring out the truth and stop coverups. What I noticed is that my husband could not say anything he wanted to the therapist. Now there are two people in the room that he’s trying to convince. It was great.
Things worked out.
If he hadn’t changed his behavior I was determined I would divorce, vowed to myself I will not live this way!! I will not ever take that from him or anyone!!
I encourage every woman to stand up speak out and if you must divorce; divorce!!!!
If some one else is more important to look at then me ..no more Torturing me.
To be honest it’s actually my fiance he said out loud he was honest that eventually he did tried to cheat on me like he was talking with another women and he didn’t let me have his phone to be checking now this days we are more better
Well if your husband was with that women other then you..he will be looking at you ..is not you …is him ..in this case someone else is alwals better and most of the times..they forget to look in the mirrow ..
My heart is breaking right now reading some of the comments. I can relate to ALL of it! I am going to therapy to work on my jealousy and trust issues(which I know I have some) Do any of y’all’s husband’s try to reassure yall of his love and commitment? Do any of you pray and read together (devotions)? He seems so genuine during these times, but denies anything I think I see and tells me its crazy. He does admit to being tempted but I honestly think he’s addicted to the attention he gets from other women. He tells me that I need to get it in my head that I’m the only one he wants for life. I honestly don’t know if I’m really just that jealous or if he plays with my head. I feel like I’m going crazy and can’t think straight. We stopped doing anything that has to do with going in public including church. There’s some good about him that I love but there’s also this, a few other things and he even hits me if we get into an argument that goes too far. Part of me loves hims and part of me wants freedom. He tells me I am double minded and divorce isn’t biblical. I’m not innocent. I do push his buttons when I am overwhelmed by jealousy. Right now I don’t feel like therapy is working because no one ever sees his part (if he is doing what I think) they just see crazy me. Any advice? I’m slowly dying inside.
I know how u feel I have been told it’s all in my head it bloody hurts the last few days I been telling him what ever makes u happy I can make u happy then and told him 2 can play that game I’m trying to hold my head high it’s hard he has never laid a finger on me and if he did he would be gone that’s what happened in my last relationship no man should laid a finger on a woman and no woman should lay a finger on a man I have had cancelling which found it helped but that has stopped at the moment I keep telling him u can’t be happy with me if ur eyes wonder on other woman but tells me he loves me loads and don’t want anyone else it plays with my head loads hope u can sort it out I’m feeling ur pain x
Yeah I don’t understand why these type of guys stay with someone they aren’t completely happy with. Stop making my life miserable because you are, yet he says he loves me so much. The only reason I can think that these guys stay with us (or I’ll speak for myself) is that they enjoy the mind games. They get a sick thrill of being deceptive and seeing just how far they can go with it. It’s all fun and games to them. I just don’t get it. I wish I were stronger but after 20+ years my strength is gone. I lost myself somewhere along the way and I don’t even know who I am anymore outside of our marriage and being a mom.
Same for me. I am so lonely and confused, though realizing what is really going on here. I’m convinced he wants me to kill myself.
This is me! It’s crazy that everything you just said I’ve thought! Why do they stay? Because they are sadistic! They enjoy seeing us hurt! 😭 I’ve been gone 1 month and my mind is starting to clear up! I can see clearly now that I don’t have him in my head as much!
Please begin to read about covert narcissism. What you are experiencing is covert abuse. Word twisting, denial, gaslighting, and lies lies lies, etc. All while portraying themselves as “Mr. Nice Guys”. Most counselors are not trained in this personality disorder and coverts can dupe even them very easily. Often the wives are seen as “crazy” because they cannot put in words all the confusion they feel. There are many of us spouses out here struggling with this. Best wishes.
Please please please do not stay with someone who hits you. Please.
It’s disrespectful plain as day and obviously hurtful. Talk about it and hopefully he changes. If not I’d be tempted to leave.
Well to be honest all this years we’ve been together he’s been cheating on me sending some girls msgs .he send some girl from his work what he’s gonna do to her and she send me msg back if I did send her msgs on fb messenger I did said to her nope that day on 3rd of March 2022 I broke up with the father of my child and I move out to Dudley where my mum lives also that girl she trusted me and she send me all their msgs what they was saying. My ex he’s a pathological liar who never admits the truth . I’m happy with my son at my mums .
Me and my ex we’ve been together over 4 or 5 years we loved each other’s. We’ve been siting down together to talk it out there wasn’t too much for him to sort out all the time whenever we was out infront or he’s been staring out girls non stop . He never helped me with our son it was only me our son is 1 years old ,17 months old and 20 days old . There wasn’t a future me and my son to be living with him. To many bills we’ve had and instead of him to be paying for our renting house he says to me to pay half of the bills as I don’t work but he does works .I felt so guilty that I met this liar and all the lies he’s done it’s all come out true
Me and my ex we’ve been together over 4 or 5 years we loved each other’s. We’ve been siting down together to talk it out there wasn’t too much for him to sort out all the time whenever we was out infront or he’s been staring out girls non stop . He never helped me with our son it was only me our son is 1 years old ,17 months old and 20 days old . There wasn’t a future me and my son to be living with him. To many bills we’ve had and instead of him to be paying for our renting house he says to me to pay half of the bills as I don’t work but he does works .I felt so guilty that I met this liar and all the lies he’s done it’s all come out true
Thank you for your encouragement
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I understand what all of you ladies are going through. My husband not only look at other women he tried to blame it on me and stated that he is going to stop going places with me. I have been married to my spouse for a little over 11 years and I finally left him when he started setting me up to give me crimelike charges brought on me. For example: He laid down an extension cord in the middle of the floor and said that I did it so that he could trip and injury himself. That is one example of many. I can not continue living a lie and I am sure that God does not what me to either.
I can relate to all these ladies here. I lived it for almost 14 years. During the duration of the last 2 years, I prayed on what God’s plan was for me, as I was like a vase with hairline cracks and missing pieces….a shadow of a woman who I used to be, and felt this wasn’t something that he would be desiring.