“He Asks Me ‘What’s Wrong?’ – and Then Gets Angry at ME When I Tell Him He Hurt Me.”

I am not an expert, a counselor, a pastor or a psychologist. My blog and posts may be helpful for you, they may not be. I mostly write for wives who tend to be controlling/dominating with passive husbands. Wives who have domineering husbands and who have trouble speaking their minds may not find my blog to be a good fit. Ultimately, each wife will have to pray and study God’s Word and decide what she believes God desires her to do in her unique situation. God’s wisdom is what is most important here, not my ideas or suggestions!

Here is a question I received from a wife.  I think this issue is REALLY important.   And I am extremely thankful that this wife is generously allowing me to share because I know that many wives are dealing with this and are frustrated – as are their husbands.  So let’s hash through this together and find a way to treat our husbands respectfully while still being true to our feelings.  It IS possible to do both of those things at the same time – share our hearts AND be respectful!  But it takes practice and some help to get there.  (I am not including the whole dialogue for privacy’s sake.)

NOTE:  I only address women on my blog and what we can change – ourselves.  I don’t teach men.  There are plenty of things in the below example that the husband could do to improve.  But we are only going to focus on what the wife can change and what she can control in this post.

**  If your husband is particularly abusive or controlling – please find godly help ASAP!  If there are mental disorders, drug addictions, alcohol abuse, infidelity, or serious issues in your marriage, please find local, experienced, godly help.  Those things go beyond the scope of this blog **

Hi April,

I have a question about the whole “sharing your heart” thing. smile

My husband gets very offended at the idea that he sometimes hurts my feelings, or that actions of his cause me pain. Even when he asks me what is wrong.  If I tell him how a particular action of his made me feel [hurt/scared/upset] he takes it as a personal affront and then turns it back on me and blames me, tells me I’m making a big deal out of nothing (his exact words quite often) and that I need to suck it up and get over it – and he inevitably goes off on a tangent talking about things that have nothing to do with what happened.  wink

My husband travels a lot with his job. He has a habit of telling me he will do something at a certain time (without my asking) – or within certain time parameters – and then not do it.

And when I express to him how important it is to me that he keep his word, he blames me for getting upset and tells me I’m making a big deal out of nothing. He starts to make excuses and inevitably starts saying hurtful things and belittling me.

FROM THE PEACEFULWIFE:

I am going to give some suggestions and options.  There are other ways to handle this respectfully, too – but I am going to give you some place to START.  And I am going to try to show you this husband’s perspective.  His viewpoint is KEY here.  We need to know what messages he is hearing when his wife is speaking and what is triggering his angry reaction.  

This wife is NOT wrong for wanting her husband to call her when he gets to each airport.  Most wives would want that.  And I actually don’t think her husband has a big problem with calling her.  The issue here is her approach.

This wife was texting/saying things to her husband things like,

  • “So you’re not going to call me like you said you would?”
  • “You’re lying to me!!”/”You’re a liar!”
  • “You’re not a man of your word!”

In a  man’s world – this is a confrontational approach that insults his honor.

It all boils down to – This man is likely feeling blamed, judged, condemned, and criticized and he does not like it. He is trying to defend his honor.  NO MAN would treat him like this – how on earth could the woman he loves and trusts most in all the world attack him this way?  It’s just beyond his ability to fathom.

WHEN YOUR HUSBAND ASKS, “WHAT’S WRONG, HONEY?” – WHAT DOES HE ACTUALLY MEAN?

  • He DOES want to know what is wrong.  And he wants to fix the problem, be your hero and make you happy!
  • He DOES NOT want to be thrown under the bus, blamed, humiliated, disrespected and insulted.

EXPECTATIONS CAN KILL A RELATIONSHIP

You know that his schedule is extremely variable. You know that your husband will “promise” you things but may not be able to or may not remember to follow through precisely at the time he had said.

You TOTALLY have the power to make this a non-issue. Yes, it would be awesome if he always called exactly when he said he would. But since you know that he has this tendency to say he will do things and then he can’t do it or it slips his mind – then please RELEASE HIM from your expectations

One reader shared a quote with me “expectations are premeditated resentment.”

WHAT HE IS HEARING

I believe he is hearing disrespect and that is why he is getting upset.  I realize you don’t intend to be disrespectful – you are upset because he didn’t call when he said he would.  But that is likely what he hears.  

Focus on your own pure feelings and on whatever he is doing RIGHT.  As he feels increasingly respected and sees your faith and trust in him, and you praise him when he does what you like – he will probably do what you want more and more often.  There may be times you need to address a shortcoming or sin (Matthew 7:1-5, Matthew 18:16-18).  But, as much as possible, don’t blame him and label him.  Talk about your feelings and desires – then he can be the hero instead of being labelled the villain with no way to make things right.

WHAT WOULD WORK?

A great way to get him to call you sooner is to thank and praise him when he does call you on time.

  • “Sweetheart, THANKS SO much for calling me as soon as you got to the airport! That makes me feel so loved. You are the best!”
  • “It means so much to me that you called me. Thanks for helping me not feel nervous about if you were safe.”
  • “I love it when you call me!  I really appreciate when you call me when you said you would.  Thanks for being a man of your word.”
  • “I don’t mean to worry when I don’t hear from you, but sometimes I do worry.  I really appreciate it when you call me.  You are such a wonderful husband!”

IF HE CALLS LATE:

Really, you can still thank him for calling even if he calls you late.  Your gratitude and friendliness will encourage him to call sooner and to ENJOY calling you instead of DREAD calling you. 

IF YOU ARE GETTING WORRIED ABOUT HIM

You can text him and say,

  • “Just checking to be sure you are ok!:)  I can’t wait to be in your arms again soon!”

HOW TO SHARE YOUR HURT WHEN HE DOESN’T CALL

If he continues not to call on time and you are being very respectful for several weeks – you can share your heart in a non-threatening, non-blaming way by sharing your feelings in a very basic, simple way WITHOUT any accusations against him

  • “I’m nervous that I haven’t heard from you.”
  • “I want to be sure you are safe. I love you!”
  • “I feel scared/afraid when I don’t hear from you right away.”
  • “I worry that something awful may have happened to you when you don’t call me when you land.”
  • “I feel sad when you don’t call me right away.”
  • “It means a lot to me when you call me when you say you will.”
  • “I feel upset when you forget to call me.”
  • “I want you to call me when you say you will, please.”

 

Even if he doesn’t work on changing in the marriage AT ALL – just you changing and being respectful and cooperative will bless your marriage by the power of God. smileYou have SO MUCH POWER here! 
  • Proverbs 12:16   Fools show their annoyance at once,  but the prudent overlook an insult.
  • Proverbs 17:9     Whoever would foster love covers over an offense, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends.
  • I Peter 4:8  Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
  • I Corinthians 13:4-8  Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails.
  • Romans 12:17-21  Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone.  If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.  Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”  says the Lord.  On the contrary:

    “If your enemy is hungry, feed him;

    if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.

    In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

    Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

RELATED:

Confronting Our Husbands about Their Sin

Conflict Posts

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52 Comments on ““He Asks Me ‘What’s Wrong?’ – and Then Gets Angry at ME When I Tell Him He Hurt Me.””

  1. Emily C
    October 24, 2012 at 7:31 am #

    Another great post, April. It continues to amaze me all of the things that speak disrespect to my husband. As we continue conversation, he has continued to point it out to me much more often. At first it was really frustrating that he pointed out, but now I just realize how many things I didn’t have a clue were disrespectful.

    And sitting here and reading your responses, I am continually reminded how far I have to go as those responses are so far from what I even think about saying… but I continue to press on towards the prize:-)

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      October 24, 2012 at 7:38 am #

      Emily,

      It is SERIOUSLY like learning another language – although even more frustrating because you THINK you already know his language!

      Men and women have incredibly unique perspectives and different ways of looking at things. When we can accept this – that is a HUGE step towards unity. When I stopped expecting my husband to react like ME, and assuming he meant what I would mean if I had a reaction – things got a lot better!

      I am REALLY thankful that you are listening to your husband. The fact that he is telling you more about what is disrespectful to him is A VERY GOOD SIGN that he is feeling more respected and safer around you to share his needs. GREAT JOB!

      God renews our minds and hearts. It is HARD at first – and VERY counter-intuitive. But eventually, the new mind becomes “normal” and you won’t even think the old way anymore.:)

      I am SO excited about what God is doing in your life and marriage and your willingness to be humble and obey God!

      Like

  2. Nana
    October 24, 2012 at 7:51 am #

    This is one exciting issue. Yep, i’ve been there before too, and my heart goes out to this wife because it is a painful experience. God bless you for this wonderful piece of advice, and I pray this wife pays attention to all the concerns you raised. Cholerics can struggle sometimes with being gracious in their expectations from others, and can end up hurting themselves. You’ve said it all, April, and said it well. In my case, God told me to come and do all the complaining about my hurts that will make my husband rage when I try telling him, to Him. As a rule, I do not answer that question at all, even if I do in very few words and go quiet. Its really painful but God always comforts me. I don’t expect much from my husband and that leaves both of us with a lot of space and fresh air to enjoy. Its true as we lighten up our expectations and put up a positive appearance, our husbands also come around joyfully.
    God bless you richly, April.

    Like

  3. sholashade
    October 24, 2012 at 9:59 am #

    This is the Word of God! Thank you for sharing! I must admit when I read the question, I thought, ” How is April the peaceful wife going to get out of this one”:) You broke it down girl. Sometimes you have to release people from certain expectations and once the pressure is off, they literally fall over themselves, wanting to do it for you! I have seen it in my own life and in my own journey to “peacefulwifedom”.
    I pray for this lovely sister in Christ, that their marriage will stand firm and be joyful for them. Amen
    Keep up the good work.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      October 24, 2012 at 10:05 am #

      Sholashade,

      Thanks for the comment! Ha! You put such a smile on my face.:)

      Thanks for praying with me for this precious wife and her husband.

      May God richly bless your walk with Him and your marriage for His greatest glory.:)

      Like

  4. Deborah Mangini
    October 24, 2012 at 10:05 am #

    I really appreciate this real life example. I have found that I have a harder time with EXPECTATIONS on others when I am not completing the expectations I have for myself. To not SHARE everything on my mind when I am asked is very wise. I noticed that my husband said the other day, I am kinda grouchy, I think I will go lay down and rest for a while. Wouldn’t that better than sounding irrationally upset over small potatoes??? 😉

    Like

  5. Deborah Mangini
    October 24, 2012 at 12:07 pm #

    I thought I was educating my husband about my feelings, when really he was just trying BE understanding. I keep EXPECTING him to learn what will make me feel better but it’s just another way I am trying to be in control of our marriage. I need to trust that he has a teacher whose ways are higher than my ways. Praise God!

    Like

    • Emily C
      October 24, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

      You know Deborah I so agree! I never realized how controlling I was being when I was trying so hard not to! I’ve actually realized that so much of my communication is manipulative and controlling… I hate it!!

      Like

  6. Ann
    October 24, 2012 at 5:29 pm #

    I try to ask myself, “Is this worth my marriage?” before I make a big deal about something. That’s not to say that my marriage will end if I bring up something (far from it!). But it keeps it in perspective. Also… whatever it is KEEP IT SHORT!! Men (and women) don’t have the time for ramblings. Outline it and leave out the drama (emotions).

    Like

  7. Crystal Blount
    October 24, 2012 at 6:18 pm #

    I love this post. It is a warm reminder to not apply our (often excessive) expectations and our own fears onto our husbands and label them as being irresponsible or mean because we are the ones with fears and insecurities. I think in general, all of our husbands are trustworthy unless they’ve given us some major reason they aren’t- in which case simple rules in place to re-establish trust can help.

    In any case, learning to trust God and giving God our fears when we’re feeling worried, anxious, or lonely, releasing it and choosing NOT to worry is a big fix.

    Also, really important- I’ve had to examine WHERE THOSE FEARS CAME FROM. Why do I want him to give me so much attention, check in, and always be available? Why does my mind go to the worst after 10 or 20 minutes of lateness on his part? I realized at some point I was making my husband pay for the mistakes of other hurtful men, and also treating him like a child. It’s a mental challenge and fun mind game to see how long I can go without bothering my husband. I busy myself with other things, hobbies, work, and studying. And true to form, he always wants to be the hero, and comes looking for me:-) Even when i’m upset, I’m learning more to withhold my feelings until he asks, and then purely tell him my fears and insecurities and why I was worried without blaming him at all.

    Great post April. I’m learning everyday.

    Like

  8. MW
    November 15, 2012 at 2:41 pm #

    For The Peaceful Wife: I have attended to God Adventures on WordPress blog through your website. Here is my question: my husband is verbally rude to my parents, my sister, her husband, my son and myself. My family of origin as I mentioned does not want any more contact with him, and they blame me for not controlling him (I have never controlled him, and I have respected him where many have noticed – to the point they say he gets respect that he does not even deserve). His family of origin will not engage him because he has been rude to them the same way. It is tiring to me and more so that my family holds me responsible (culpable). What do I say to everyone – his family and mine? I am exasperated.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      November 15, 2012 at 4:54 pm #

      MW,
      This is a difficult situation.😦 Especially for you because you can’t make him behave a certain way.

      What kinds of things does he say to you and your son?

      Is it possible he is feeling very controlled or disrespected by his parents, your parents or you?
      Is he a believer in Christ? Are you?

      As his wife, you are commanded by God to give him respect that he doesn’t deserve. You don’t have to respect sin or rudeness, but you do respect that he is your husband and that God appointed him to be the head of the home.

      Please check out the top of my home page about disrespect and respect..

      Usually – you will let him handle his relationships with other people – that is the respectful thing to do.
      You may privately tell him VERY RESPECTFULLY if you have concerns.

      But my first question would be if he is feeling attacked or disrespected? And is there anything else going on like any mental health issues, addictions, major sin, unemployment?

      I’ll be glad to work through this with you and do my best to point you to Christ.

      What does your husband want to do about the family relationships?

      Like

  9. Liz
    November 21, 2013 at 4:40 am #

    Thanks a lot for your blog peacefulwife. for sometime now have been wondering what this respect thing is all about. I thought I respected my husband but he has complained very many times of being disrespected. I was confused until I cried to God to teach me specifically what respect is to a man. God has answered my prayer through you. The specifics is what I needed. The Lord bless you. I have been through this dilemma of sharing my feelings only to get my hubby’s anger. I keep complaining that he doesn’t want me to express myself. This blog has taught me the godly selfless way to handle it.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      November 21, 2013 at 6:35 am #

      Liz,

      This is the information I desperately needed 19 years ago – but I didn’t have it. Those posts at the top of my home page about disrespect and respect are so precious to me. These are the specific examples I needed 5 years ago when I began this journey and was totally clueless about what was disrespectful and respectful.

      I’m so glad this blog has been a resource and a blessing to you. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for you my friend!

      Like

  10. Rebecca
    January 27, 2014 at 12:21 am #

    I’m not leaving a comment. I’m laying in my daughters room trying to figure out how to talk to my husband. I’m at a loss. We started dating in 1999. I was 15 he was 18. We got married in 2004. We have had many trials in the past 14 years. We have come along way from the girl looking for a savior and the boy needing someone to protect. Or maybe I have come along.
    The problem that has been there and never fixed is this… Things will go great for a week or 2 then something will happen. I will forget todo something. He has a bad day at work. Any of a number of things set him off. It is like I have never changed, like I will never be better. He talks about he never has any help. He is tiered of carrying my dead weight. How he is alone in our marriage.
    These are text I get from him when he is in this mood.
    From my husband –
    1-Your lack of interest, lack of respect and lack of intent have reached a level I’m no longer interested in stomaching. I was clear direct and specific about the need and my desire to resolve issues you’ve pleasantly ignored and disregarded for the last number of weeks. You chose this evening, you chose the time and even without a secondary party are too prideful, area famy and selfish to engage.
    2-I have no more patience and have lost empathy for your struggle. I’ll be seeking counseling and intend to work on other relationships and goals until you decide you’re ready to accept responsibility accountability and pursue our relationship.

    I feel that anything I say is condemning me. I have tried writing I have tried texting to tell him that he is hurting me. I do not believe him any more when he says “you are a great mom.” ” I’m lucky to have you.” Because all it takes is one bad moment and I’m disrespectful. I’m so tiered of him doing this. How do I respond to a text like this. How do I talk to a man, who know that how he is acting is not ok, but feels validated in his actions because I have pushed him to his breaking point as he says it. Please help.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      January 27, 2014 at 6:19 am #

      Rebecca,

      I am so sorry things are so difficult! Goodness.😦

      What is your relationship with Christ?
      What is your husband’s?

      What was your parents’ and his parents’ marriage like?

      I would love for you to check out the posts on disrespect and respect at the top of my home page. At this point, I can’t tell exactly what is going on yet. So I need a bit more info, please.

      After you read those, we can talk some more my sweet friend!:)

      If you prefer to email, you can, aprilc@sc.rr.com

      Like

  11. Jessica
    December 12, 2014 at 6:17 pm #

    I love this post and I believe that by reacting in a loving way it can save you from anger, which is a terrible thing to be consumed by.
    However, if you had a man that reminds you of the things they do for you or when they become consumed by anger they accuse you and minimise you. When you bring this up to them and they go off on you, do you still react in a loving way, what do you do?

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      December 13, 2014 at 7:02 am #

      Jessica,

      God can always empower us to respond without sinning ourselves. There are times when we may need to respectfully, gently, humbly, firmly say – “Please don’t talk to me this way.” Or, “I want to hear what you have to say, but I could hear you so much better if we can talk in a more calm way.”

      There isn’t a specific formula. Although, Proverbs says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1

      If you are filled with God’s Spirit, He can give you the power to know when to gently speak up, when to wait, when to just be silent for awhile to let your husband calm down and exactly what to say. Some men respond to respectful, firm, direct but gentle confrontation at the moment. Some men need to calm down first and will only escalate if their wives attempt to address the issue right then.

      If you would like a man’s perspective on how best to approach this, I have a feeling that Robert at http://www.amanhiswifethebible.wordpress.com may have some very helpful suggestions – particularly for men who tend to be more dominant.

      Praying for God’s wisdom for you!

      Like

      • Jessica
        December 13, 2014 at 5:07 pm #

        Hi,

        Thanks for your reply. My scenario may be a bit different as I am not married yet. We would like to get married however we are boyfriend and girlfriend. It saddens me that sometimes my concerns are dismissed and I get punished, if you like, when I voice my hurt. I spoke to someone about this and they said to me that because I am not married yet, that I should consider ending the relationship , as there is no tie and God doesn’t recognise my relationship. I don’t know what to follow as I’m in love but not married and the relationship im in, at times, can be stressful.

        Like

        • Peacefulwife
          December 15, 2014 at 5:25 pm #

          Jessica,

          How is your relationship with Christ?

          Are you sexually involved with him?

          What is his relationship with Christ?

          How do you share your concerns? What do you say?

          Are you safe? What do you mean that you get “punished”?

          Much love to you!!!!! I’m glad to talk with you about this.:)

          Like

          • Jessica
            December 16, 2014 at 6:37 pm #

            Hi Peaceful Wife,

            I don’t have a strong relationship with Christ because I don’t read the bible as much as I should and I sin alot, my wish is to be a better person in Christ but I need help to develop the habit of making God primary. I find this extremely hard because I always feel convicted.

            I have been sexually involved with him for more than a year. However I feel like his relationship with Christ is not strong because he doesn’t take Jesus as seriously as he should. Especially now that we are sexually involved he feels like the Christian life isn’t for him.

            My boyfriend is insecure, has short patience and can be a,pessimist due to his insecurities. I find that I have to choose my words carefully otherwise he will start accusing me of lying or cheating or being manipulative. He also starts to talk down to me and shut me off for a few days. After he calms down he will talk to me like nothing ever happened. If I bring it up again he just dismisses me.

            I know I must be a pain but I would be grateful if I got advice from you as you are a woman of God.

            Thanks

            Like

            • Jessica
              December 16, 2014 at 6:40 pm #

              Too add…by punished I mean verbally abused. I find myself Google-ing his behaviour and he shows signs of someone who has the tendency of being verbally abusive.

              Like

            • Peacefulwife
              December 17, 2014 at 6:43 am #

              Jessica,

              What kind of relationship would you like to have with Christ?

              How would you say that a person can come to know Him?

              Much love to you!

              Like

              • Jessica
                December 17, 2014 at 10:31 am #

                Thanks for your reply,
                I would like to spend more time with Christ than I should. But I feel guilty because I don’t feel pure to spend time with Christ.

                I think that if I indulged in the Bible a bit more I would be a better person. But it’s not so simple when you are already in sin.

                Like

                • Peacefulwife
                  December 17, 2014 at 8:42 pm #

                  Jessica,
                  You can have all of Jesus. He is not beyond your reach. But, you do have to be willing to give all of yourself to Him, too.:) are you ready to choose Him over any sin? I am praying for you! He can give you the power to overcome every sin. But you cannot have both Jesus and sin. It is one or the other. I am glad to walk with you in this journey!

                  Like

                • Peacefulwife
                  December 17, 2014 at 10:46 pm #

                  Jessica,

                  The Bible is good, it is a way we can know God more. But it is God’s truth combined with His Spirit working in us that make us more and more like Jesus. We cannot make ourselves good. We are all in desperate need of all that Jesus has done for us to make us right with God. It is all about Him!:)

                  Like

  12. Sheryl
    January 2, 2015 at 9:18 am #

    Goodmorning, my name is Sheryl and I am from jamaica. My boyfriend recently got married to this girl in the US to get is stay and so that things will be better for us. However I am scared because we argue a lot and I really hate when we do. Please advise me on what to do.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      January 2, 2015 at 9:54 am #

      Sheryl,

      Goodness, my sweet girl! If he is married, then it is very unwise to attempt to still be with him.

      What is your relationship with Christ?

      I’m glad to talk with you more about this. But I am going to be upholding the Bible and what God says about marriage. No matter why someone gets married – once they are married, marriage is a covenant and is to be honored by all. It is not ok to continue to stay with someone who is married. I know this will be very painful – but I believe God has something much better for you than this!

      Much love,
      April

      Like

  13. K
    July 4, 2015 at 3:21 pm #

    I don’t feel that’s it’s right to assume she’s being disrespectful. She stated that when she answers how something makes her feel (hurt, scared, etc.) he flips out. It’s like there’s no responsibility or accountability for his own actions or words. I myself am married to a rage-a-holic and no matter how respectful I am he flips out. He’ll say something rude or disrespectful, I’ll say honey that makes me feel like an idiot. He’ll flip out and tell me that I’m wrong and then shut me down. If the situations were reversed, I’d immediately say I’m sorry that my comments made you feel that way. I don’t think you’re an idiot. Is there anything I can do to make it right?

    There comes a point where you try and try and your husband will continue being verbally and emotionally abusive.

    If someone says they’re going to do something, do it. Don’t make excuses for passive aggressive or appeasing behavior. If he really cared what his wife wanted (text), he’d do it most of the time. Just like all of us wives do for our husband but their subpar behavior gets swept under the rug.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      July 4, 2015 at 9:10 pm #

      K,

      I ask women about this because so many of us are disrespectful without realizing it. There can be situations where a husband has rage or anger issues and it really isn’t about the wife. But there are many times when the husband and wife have a sin cycle going on. One sins against the other, that prompts the other one to sin, that encourages the first one to sin more, etc… We only control ourselves, so I want to follow Matthew 7:1-5 and ask God to help us examine our own lives before we attempt to address our husbands’ sin. I hope that makes sense. But if a wife is being respectful and the husband still flips out and has rage issues – that is a different kind of situation.

      A wife’s responsibility is to obey God for herself. She is not responsible for her husband’s sin. There are times when we may need to confront our husbands about their sin.

      If you are not safe, and he is threatening harm against you, please seek appropriate, trustworthy, experienced help right away! If he is not in his right mind, has uncontrolled mental health issues, is addicted to drugs/alcohol, or has significant unrepentant sin – there can be times when it is not safe for a wife to submit to her husband – and she may need outside help.

      God never condones abuse or sin against anyone.

      If it is just a matter of he yells and loses his temper, but you believe you are safe, it could be that something like this wife’s approach may be something to prayerfully consider.

      How is your walk with Christ going?

      Has your husband always had rage like this?

      Do you ever feel safe sharing your concerns?

      Does your husband have a walk with Christ?

      Like

  14. Natalie Calixte
    December 8, 2015 at 1:38 am #

    I cannot talk with my husband everything I said is wrong I do not know what to do and I read your page I understand everything you said is right but I can not change it he always doing something he do not have time for me he go to work early.and I go to work afternoon he come home I’m not home he sleeping…

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      December 8, 2015 at 8:07 am #

      Natalie Calixte,

      So you have different schedules and don’t get to see each other much? That would be hard!😦

      How do you try to talk to your husband about what you want?

      How does he respond?

      Much love to you!

      Like

  15. SJ
    January 3, 2016 at 4:48 am #

    I’ve been married for over 30 years to a doctor who has a very busy schedule. He also is a hunter. I have learned over the years that because of his work, I try not to bother him while he is working unless necessary. But there are times that a call or text from him would be nice during the day. To know he is thinking about me. This rarely happens. If I think of him during the day and send a text to ask how he is, most times I don’t get a reply. When I say something to him later about him not replying, I always get the same response, “I’m busy”. So I’ve tried to respect him and not get my feelings hurt when I don’t get a reply.

    But over the past year, I’ve noticed that friends of his, people he works with can text and call and he responds to them. Why not me? The most recent example is, he left for a 4 day hunting trip and planned it without even telling me about it. It was over New Year’s Eve and day. We are not big New Year’s Eve folks, but the fact that he just planned it without any conversation with me really hurt but I didn’t say anything because I would have gotten the speech and told to get over it. While he has been gone, I’ve gotten a bad cold with fever and home alone. I texted him and said I had fever and in the bed, he called, which was sweet. He told me before he went to bed that same night, he’d call me and check on how I was doing. Which was comforting because I was home alone. Of course, feeling like I do, I went on to sleep.

    When my fever broke around 1:30 in the morning, I relized he had not called me or even a text to see how I was. Now that hurt my feelings. I know I’m not feeling well and that might have something to do with my anger. But i’m here alone. I overlook a lot of times he doesn’t call or text and don’t say a word. But tonight really hurt my feelings. Don’t say youre going to call when you are not working but just hanging out with your hunting buddies. When I saw he had not called, I did text him at that moment and said “I woke up and saw that you had not called to check on me like you said, Not even a text”. That’s all I texted.

    I’m sure he will turn this on me and he will tell me to get over it. I’ve prayed about this a lot and I do my best to show respect to my husband. All I’m wanting is some back in return. I know this text tonight probably was not the right thing to do, and I’ve asked God to help me when I do hear from my husband on how to respond when he starts in, because he will.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      January 3, 2016 at 7:40 am #

      SJ,

      I’m so sorry you have been so sick!😦 And I’m sorry that your husband hasn’t texted or checked on you.

      I’m hoping there is a reason that he wasn’t able to call or text, and that he was not purposely being unthoughtful.

      If he says to get over it, it is okay to simply state your feelings, “It would mean a lot to me for you to check on me.” And then you could drop it, or “I’m feeling sad that you didn’t check on me.” Simply state your feelings. Then let it go. Let him think about what you said and let him decide what to do. Then take your hurt to God.

      Let me know how things go and we can talk some more if you would like.

      I really admire how gracious you have been and how understanding of your husband being so busy. A lot of men don’t like to communicate much by text or by phone. Some men are not big on words at all. Especially when they are at work or busy. Is it possible that your husband shows love in non-verbal ways?

      I can certainly understand that you would have appreciated your husband letting you know that he was planning to go away – or having a conversation with you about it.

      Has he been super stressed lately?

      What are interactions usually like between the two of you?

      How is your walk with Christ going, my dear sisteR?

      Much love to you!

      Like

  16. Amanda
    January 14, 2016 at 2:20 pm #

    Hello April! I found your site recently and have been truly blessed by your allowing God share His truth through you! Living according to His word by becoming a godly wife is the most fulfilling thing we can do in our life! Thank you for this ministry!

    As I searched your site, I was trying to find some posts possibly about how to live out this God given ministry to our husbands, children, and home, when we are married to a man who is often away from home working. My husband more times than not is away, in a different state, working. He is faithful and I am truly blessed to have a godly husband who works hard to provide. But at the same time, I wonder how I am actually living out my role when he is not home most of the time….. I’m thankful anyways because God is in control, but sometimes, I feel like I am not doing anything to ‘help’ my husband when he’s away.

    Any thoughts?

    Blessings from a sister!:)

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      January 14, 2016 at 4:16 pm #

      Amanda,

      It is wonderful to meet you! We may need to work on a new post about this specific topic. Hmmm… that is a good idea!

      I have a post that may be helpful – it is for military wives, but a lot of the same things may apply.

      And, of course, you can ask your husband what would most bless him and do those things. If he is able to express his thoughts to you – that would be the best place to get this info.:)

      Much love to you! Thanks for being on this journey with me.:)

      Like

      • Amanda
        January 31, 2016 at 8:17 pm #

        April,
        Thank you for referring me to the military wife post, it was extremely helpful and pretty much stated what I already see in my own situation happening when my husband is away!!! That specific post reminded me of a very heart touching movie called “Lifted”, where a wife and son have to say goodbye to their husband/father as he is deployed…… and as the man is walking to get on his bus, you see the tears running down his face, with the wife and son in the background crying too…..I won’t spoil the rest— BUT– it is so emotionally real watching it because having to say goodbye is SO hard!!!!!

        In the case of just a husband who works away a lot, I actually thought about it after writing the first post, and I wrote out what I do to be my husband’s helper even though he is away the majority of the time…..:)

        1st and foremost: I am ultimately serving Christ wherever I am— Even though my husband is away most of the time, I am called to take care of our home, raise my child, and keep track of our finances– and when he does come home— I am to help him with whatever he needs me to do to make his life and time away go smoothly by going grocery shopping for him, packing for him, doing his laundry, etc. I always make sure to have his favorite desert and any other items he needs/wants in the house when he’s here!

        [I wrote this next one even before reading the military wife post so I know it’s The Lord:) ]
        2ndly, And I say this lightly because it is definitely not EASY to be apart— BUT— sometimes it is actually for the better that my husband works away during the week because it gives us both individual time to focus more on Christ and on chaning our own ways. It also brings us closer and is more peaceful this way because we don’t argue and we miss each other and appreciate each other morewhen he’s away. It is easier to separate myself emotionally and spiritually when he’s away and it is easier to seek God because He is all I have when my husband is gone. It increases my faith and it gives me the much needed perspective that all this world is, is passing away.

        My everlasting marriage is to the Lord and in the end, He alone will matter!

        I think there may be lots and lots of married couples that never actually spend any time apart from each other, and I think that it is actually a blessing in disguies sometimes because it really opens the door for me to seek God, focus on Him, and hear from Him.

        I too easily fall into idolatry when my husband is living home all the time because I tend to shift my focus on him instead of Christ, sadly. But thankfully, God has shown me that [while my husband was away :)]!!!

        God knows what each of us need!!!!!

        Blessings!

        Amanda

        Like

        • Peacefulwife
          February 1, 2016 at 8:17 am #

          Amanda,

          Thank you so much for sharing! I love what you are learning. This is beautiful.:)

          Like

  17. Alyssa
    February 14, 2016 at 12:34 pm #

    I need your help. my husband this morning for instance he’s in treatment I’m living off my sister and almost 8 months pregnant. We were going to meet at his treatment center and he would drive is to church. He texts me around 10:30. Saying u not f***ing going to church.. I responded no baby I just woke up I have real bad back pain. Another text I sent with no response. Are you coming to get me after church I’m going to see if I can get my back pain to go away with a hot bath and some Tylenol.. Another tex I sent with no response baby can you please answer me so I know if you’re getting me after church… You know it’s not very godly to ignore your pregnant wife for having back pain

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      February 14, 2016 at 2:39 pm #

      Alyssa,
      That sounds like a very difficult situation.😦 I’m so sorry to hear about it! But congratulations on your pregnancy.:)

      He is in treatment – for an addiction?

      What is it that I might be able to help you with, my sister?

      Like

  18. thesproutingbean
    February 22, 2016 at 8:34 pm #

    I read this post and the comments and I think you have some good points. My boyfriend has long said he feels attacked, blamed or accused when I have expressed my feelings to him, and it took me literally years to even begin to understand what he was talking about. This is a very difficult issue.

    I never meant to hurt him in any way when I expressed my feelings. But I did a terrible job of it at the start of our relationship because I knew Jack about how to operate as a partner. I have since made a huge effort to state my feelings without BLAME etc (will almost always get an extremely unfavorable reaction from him). A wife’s/girlfriend’s feelings can be incredibly painful to a man if he feels like hes not measuring up or especially if he feels the solution is not something he can control. They respond with anger, because of those uncomfortable feelings.

    HOWEVER!!!! I do not agree that a woman should just drop the issue because a man can’t handle those difficult feelings within himself. I firmly believe that feelings should be validated. That each and every person can be allowed to feel how they do no matter what. He can’t squash difficult or hurtful feelings out of his wife when she expresses them to him any more than she should blame him and accuse him of not loving her because SHE feels hurt. The feelings themselves don’t make anyone right or wrong. I think men need to put some effort in here too, and recognize those angry feelings welling up and ask themselves why that is happening. As much as women are to self reflect on issues, and control their emotional responses to ensure they communicate in a respectful and calm way, men need to do exactly the same. It is not OK to be dismissive, to yell, to ignore, or to blame right back at your wife.

    If she messes up and her emotions come through where she feels hurt, husbands can and should try to give her the benefit of the doubt as much as possible by setting their own angry reactions aside and offering reassurance and listening, with attempt at insight to understand why the woman he loves is upset. This is incredibly difficult and takes much practice. Likewise,women can do the same thing. If she can reflect on a husband’s angry reaction and realize that he has been hurt by feeling inadequate or disrespected, she can approach him more lovingly. Respect is huge to a man, just as big as lack of thoughtfulness, love and concern is for a woman. Empathy is key. But BOTH people need to be giving that empathy as much as they can as often as they can.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      February 22, 2016 at 8:48 pm #

      thesproutingbean,

      I completely agree that husbands have tons of responsibilities here, too. They should extend love, grace, understanding, gentleness, selflessness, self-control – and all of the fruit of the Spirit. They should not be harsh, blaming, overly critical, rash, or reactive. They should not be dismissive, hateful, bitter, or blaming. They should not ignore their wives or be dismissive. They should not yell. None of us have any excuse or free pass from God to sin against the other. Wives would greatly appreciate a husband offering reassurance, and listening. There are many commands in Scripture for all believers about how we are to relate to each other and for how husbands are to love their wives.

      I don’t write for husbands here, so I don’t go into what they should do. This blog is one-sided because Scripture prohibits women from having authority over men and teaching them. But men have as much or more responsibility to do what is right before God in marriage.

      I gave a number of examples of ways wives could share their feelings in ways that would be best heard and received by their husbands. I don’t expect wives to squash their feelings. But we also don’t need to harp, nag, complain, or try to control. Sometimes that balance can get a bit dicey as we are first learning.

      How each wife should handle each specific situation is really going to depend on what the Holy Spirit prompts her to do. There may be times God whispers to her to drop something. There may be times He prompts her to address it.

      Here is a post about Confronting Our Husbands about Their Sin that goes into more about that.

      And here is a post about how hatred, rage, and other sins have no place in our lives as believers.

      Thank you for your thoughtful, respectful, and articulate comment. I appreciate your insights.:)

      Much love!
      April

      Like

  19. rebbers
    April 24, 2016 at 9:46 am #

    I disagree with you on every point. I know theres a way to say things. But maybe since it happens so often she did try before. I feel annoyed when our partner knows what we ask but expects us to go around to understand his point of view to go easy on him. But then what about both part understanding each other when only one has to change their expectations. Both parties has expectations. Theres a middle ground to respect both .

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      April 24, 2016 at 1:41 pm #

      rebbers,

      Thank you so much for sharing your perspective.:) A situation like this is certainly frustrating for us as women – and I think it is frustrating for our men, too.

      I’d like to invite you to consider a masculine perspective in a new way – here is a post where husbands share what is disrespectful to them. These are things that many women really wouldn’t think are a big deal. But they can feel hurtful to our men. I did a lot of these things earlier in our marriage – and my husband eventually shut down and became very passive. As I began to learn to genuinely respect my husband in ways that are meaningful to him (and more importantly, to Christ), God changed me. He changed my thinking and my heart. He made me more into a person I really wanted to be. And He slowly began to heal my husband and our marriage. You are welcome to read my About page if you are interested.

      When husbands feel disrespected, insulted, or controlled (even if that was NOT our intention), they tend to respond by shutting down or by getting angry seemingly “out of nowhere” sometimes. (Signs Your Husband Is Feeling Disrespected and Unloved) If we can learn to understand a masculine perspective, particularly our own husband’s perspective and how different it is from our own – we can learn to approach them in a much more effective way. Then they can hear us without feeling attacked and we can share our concerns and be heard.

      Both SHOULD be respecting each other. I completely agree. We can only change ourselves. Sometimes, we can set a godly example even if our spouse is not treating us well. But yes, the goal is for both to treat each other with honor, respect, compassion, and love. And yes, there should be compromises many times. This husband in this story SHOULD be calling his wife and should be keeping his word. What is the best way to inspire him to do that?

      Thankfully, we can respect ourselves, God, and our husbands all at the same time. For anyone who is interested, here is a post that may be helpful, “25 Ways to Respect Myself.”

      There are also times we do need to confront our husbands for what they are doing wrong. Confronting Our Husbands about Their Sin

      Before we decide what to say or what not to, it is wise to examine our own hearts and motives, first (To Speak or Not to Speak). Husbands and wives are to obey God and are to love unconditionally and treat each other with honor. My goal is that we might honor Christ in all that we do regardless of what our husbands do so that when we stand before Christ, He will say to us, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

      If we are walking in the power of God’s Spirit and we are seeking to please Him above all else, many times, He will often begin to eventually heal and transform our husbands and marriages, too. Sometimes He opens our eyes to things we are doing that are destructive that we are blind to. He has a way of opening people’s eyes to the things they are doing wrong that is much more effective than our own wisdom or attempts.

      It is not a matter of “going easy” on our husbands – I am not condoning that wives should ignore wrong doing. But if we can first better understand what is going on – we will be able to approach the issue with godly wisdom. This, in my view, is a matter of our character and our willingness to overcome evil with good (Romans 12:17-21.) If we are willing to learn to understand our husbands better and how they communicate and what they need – they will be blessed, our relationships will be blessed, and we will be blessed. That is what we would love for them to do with us, right? Sometimes, we will simply extend grace – because in Jesus, we have been given MUCH grace. Other times, we may need to respectfully confront something that is wrong. And we can share our feelings about things – but we can do that without inflaming the situation or putting our men down.

      Much love!

      Like

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  1. This Will Help So Many Wives | GodAdventureinMarriage - October 24, 2012

    […] be a respectful, honoring, peaceful wife.  Here’s her thoughts about conversation today.  Peacefulwife’s blog I hope that you will find this as helpful as I […]

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