Respect, Biblical Submission and Sexual Attraction

Married Christians CAN and SHOULD have the best sex lives on the planet.  God will show us how if we are willing to do things His way!

When God designed marriage, men, women, masculinity, femininity, romance, sex and families – He did it WISELY. And when He gives us commands about marriage, it is for our protection, good, joy and benefit in every area of our lives.

God wired men to respond to respect, admiration, faith and trust of their wives.  And He wired us to feel attracted to our husbands when we respect them, too.  It’s a win/win!  I have seen this time and time again – when the wife begins to obey God and learn to respect her husband and step down out of control, sexual intimacy often heats up.  It makes total sense!

The more feminine I am – in appearance, in attitude (gentle, respectful, trusting, admiring, cooperative, peaceful, not giving way to fear), in behavior – the more masculine my husband feels – and the greater the attraction!

**  If you have active infidelity, drug/alcohol abuse, a history of sexual abuse, uncontrolled mental conditions, physical abuse in your marriage – please find a godly, experienced Christian counselor/pastor ASAP and get help!
 
It can take TIME, like months or even a year or longer for marriages to heal sometimes.  The timing and the results are in God’s hands.  It is our job to obey Him. (Please check out Patricia’s comments in the comment section, too, for more clarification about how to approach this issue with patience, understanding and without pressuring our husbands!)

WHAT OTHER WIVES ARE EXPERIENCING

Wife 1:

I had realized that I was still trying to control that aspect of things and realized that I was literally tensing up. Once I mentally and physically relaxed, it was quite a difference for the better.  Things have never lacked in that dept, but I did find that I wasn’t as excited as I used to be in the earlier years, but my attitude has gone a long way to change that and make it “new” again. :)

Wife 2:

Since being married, I have always viewed sex as an inconvenience.   Like something I HAD to do, but if it was up to me I could go my whole life without it. I enjoy it once it gets going, but the getting started is just too much trouble and I’m usually too tired at the end of the day. And a lot of the time it would actually get on my nerves!!
WELL, I have been following your advice about submission and respect strictly for the past 4 weeks and in the last week the change in my husband is huge!!

He’s sweet, tender, affectionate and considerate of my feelings!! I have also noticed that I…..get in the mood easier/faster and enjoy it more. And where usually once I have done my “duty” (that’s how I used to look at it) I would look forward to not being bothered about it for a few days. I actually catch myself thinking about having sex with my husband during the day, and for the first time since we’ve been married– we had sex 2 nights in a row.

This has been an amazing week!! I had get to where I will still submit and respect him even if he never changes. And I do it out of obedience to God, not to change him. It’s like the moment I decided that, the atmosphere in our home and marriage changed. I don’t feel like I’m doing much different, but I think it’s my countenance behind my actions that is different. Does that make sense?  It’s an amazing revelation once it sinks in. And it’s very powerful too!!

I have such a peace and feel great!!

Wife 3:

Our marriage was strained before God changed my heart; there was a lot of unspoken struggles going on between us. There was an obvious tension in the air.
Realizing and accepting God’s plan for my role in our marriage was like the missing piece to the puzzle. I struggled for a while, since submission definitely does not come naturally, but once I trusted God and let go, it was as if I was free. Free of the weight of the burden I had been trying to carry, and free to love my husband in the way God intended.
When I stepped into my role in our marriage, my husband gladly stepped forward into the leader position of our family. He was able to look at me as an equal partner rather than his competition. He became the man of the house in every sense of the word. He now pursues me like he did when we were dating. He is tender and loving toward me now that he no longer feels that his manhood is being threatened. His confidence is much higher because he knows that I support him 100%. I have always had a strong sexual desire for my husband, but in the beginning of our marriage, I would often find myself feeling emotionally unfulfilled after sex. I believe allowing God to fulfill my emotional needs and aligning my marriage plan with His has changed that completely.
The book Love & Respect talks a lot about the cycle of how once a man’s desire to be respected is filled, he will desire to show love toward his wife. This translates well into the bedroom! A submissive, respecting & loving wife is very feminine and sexy to a man. And a man who is confident and knows his wife loves him (remember: to a man, respect equals love!) is eager to please her in every way.
I won’t beat around the bush – our sex life is red hot!!! My husband knows I have his full confidence, so there is a deep trust which allows us to intimately connect inside the bedroom & out. And as I said, he pursues me on a daily basis – he can hardly walk by without touching me, and I love it! I can tell you it has less to do with my outward appearance (like most moms, I look different now that I have had children!) but more to do with the change that has taken place in my heart. (See 1 Peter 3:3-4) He feels safe with me, and I feel safe with him; so I feel free to be uninhibited during sex, which makes it more enjoyable for both of us.
 

Wife 4:

We usually don’t go for a long time without sex- even before I followed God’s guidelines to Biblical submission.I admit, though, that for me there were times when I think, ok when are we done with this? NOW, however, it is just amazing- for me and for him. We went away for our anniversary recently so we were alone, no children, romantic setting, no time constraints… and I can’t go into details because this isn’t THAT kind of blog- but it was WOW for both of us.  The only thing that is preventing us from repeating that experience more often is our children and him starting work at 4am and me working until 6pm and both being tired at the end of the day. So we wait (not so patiently) for the weekend.

I asked my husband what he wants for Valentine’s Day (thinking tangible present wise) and he simply said, a repeat of that amazing bedroom time during our little getaway.

Wife 5:

I am very new to this, as you know :)) but in the past I have found sadly to my hurt that my husband has been the most attracted to me sexually when I have been unwell or hurting from something and he has to hold me or comfort me with words. It struck me this week, the reason that has been happening is because it was the only time I showed my vulnerability and needed his strength … The only really sad thing is it was times like these I was closest to my children and we also loved in a new level during those times, I was dependent on someone else to take care of things coz I couldn’t. I was soft and grateful and and gentle.
How amazing it will be as this transforming of my mind and our roles happen that he will get to see that real me without the need for illness or personal hurt:). We are only one week into this and my husband can’t keep his hands from touching my shoulder, arm, holding me when I am standing at the counter top, waking me every morning with ” Hello, beautiful wife of mine!”

Maybe because I am in that quiet phase and he’s not fighting to be heard.
I never realised how much I have missed as to how my children and husband look, when you look into their eyes and listen, they really have beautiful faces.
Obeying God works , even if it means dying to some old junk.

Wife 6:

Before I learned about being a godly wife and what all of that meant, I was controlling in every area of our marriage – including  physical intimacy.  I was always the aggressor – the initiator.  And I initiated daily many times – trying to keep my husband from other temptations and trying to connect with him sexually since I felt so disconnected emotionally and spiritually.  I tried to take on the responsibility of keeping his thought life pure and thought if we had sex daily, it would help him feel fulfilled and he wouldn’t be as tempted to look elsewhere.  That was a HEAVY weight.  I also measured the quality of our marriage by our frequency of intimacy.  And I was rejected multiple times per week for many years – not with words, but just by his lack of interest and lack of response.  The pain from that was excruciating.  I cried and fell into despair many times over this issue.   And that made me want to prove to myself even more that my husband really did desire me.  So I would pursue him even more intently, and he continued to reject me about 3/4 of the time or so.  I never rejected him.  And he never initiated.  (Of course, I didn’t give him much of a chance!)

I actually had a hard time sleeping many nights because I constantly was trying to be “ready” in case he might accept me – and then there was the HUGE let down when he didn’t want me again and it would take a long time to go to sleep and calm down when I felt so rejected and defeated so much.

It was not until after I learned about giving up my controlling behavior and disrespect that I realized that he needed to be the one who pursued me, I had things backwards.  My disrespect and my sexual aggression were a complete turn off to him .  I had no idea how men worked!

It was SO HARD, but I started waiting and waiting and waiting for him to initiate.  I think it took about 6 weeks at first.  It took me a lot longer to “warm up” to his advances by that time because I wasn’t “simmering” all the time like I used to – I had finally figured out how to turn myself off – and it was a relief.  But it was WONDERFUL to see my husband finally desire me and pursue me.  I never thought I would experience that again!

Sometimes, these days, my husband hugs me for no reason.  He touches me when he goes by sometimes.  He listens to my feelings intently.  He cares what I think and want.  He stops everything to give me his full attention now, if I ask for it.  He winks at me again.  Occasionally, he will literally pick me up and sweep me off my feet and carry me to our room.  SERIOUSLY.   I thank God EVERY DAY for what He has done in our marriage!

THAT NEVER, EVER USED TO HAPPEN!

After another month or two, he asked me if I  would initiate again sometimes and told me he missed me doing that.  WOW!  Now, he initiates often, and I do sometimes, too.  But I don’t smother him and I also know that if he is too tired one night, it does not mean he doesn’t want me and doesn’t desire me and doesn’t love me.  And I am able to be unshaken even in the face of what used to feel like rejection.  Now, I am confident in Christ’s love for me, and in my husband’s love for me.

I am uninhibited.  I am able to talk and tell him what I like – I was NEVER that vulnerable before!  I ask him to talk to me – and he does!  We have such an incredible sexual connection, emotional connection and spiritual connection – it is the marriage I always thought we would have.  It’s not perfect.  But I am utterly content and completely sexually fulfilled, satisfied, joyful and grateful for the privilege of being married to my amazing man – God’s gift to me.  I feel more sexy, feminine, powerful, peaceful, joyful, alive and full of purpose than I ever have in my life.  I LOVE being a woman now – I embrace and cherish the gift of God’s plan for femininity.  How I wish I had understood all of this YEARS ago!  You could not pay me any amount of money to go back to my old ways!  I’m the happiest girl on the planet!

Wife 7:

I just wanted to share something with you, that as a Christian woman, I did NOT expect to happen in my marriage.

The last few months really, this idea of submission and respect have been eating away at me. Our marriage has definitely had its ups and downs, and more often than not the “downs” were directly caused by my disrespectful (or worse) actions and attitudes. See, I am what you call a “difficult” women. I am high strung, independent, strong willed, domineering, and a bit of a smart mouth know-it-all. I am well educated and considered very intelligent, which has been a source of pride in my life. I married a very kind, laid back, gentle man, who sadly has allowed me to walk all over him. To make a long story short, I ran him over in our relationship. Not physically of course, but relationally and emotionally. I pushed him around, argumentatively. He never stood up to me, for himself, and I think in a way, deep down inside, I really wished he had. Who can respect or admire a spineless pushover? I am a strong women, but I have come to realize that I crave a strong man who can keep me in line. I despised myself for acting that way, and him for putting up with it.

After praying about it and thinking about it for a few days, I approached him, and I think gave him quite a shock! I apologized for the strife that my disrespect and domination have caused in our marriage, and our home. Then I told him, I really need for him to be in charge. I needed him to “wear the pants”, and as needed to put me in line. Several weeks ago I had handed over the control of the finances to him, and it really worked out well… I am free to offer polite suggestions, or ask questions respectfully, but he has the final say, and that is that, end of discussion.

What that means in our daily life, is if he wants me to wear a particular thing, I do. If he wants my long hair to be down, it’s down.  He expects me to answer him if he asks for my opinion on something. I have given him complete control, and in return, he puts my needs first. Not always my wants, but my needs. I don’t always have to like it, but I have to obey it. Sometimes that means he wants me to take a nap, because he knows I was up with the baby during the night. Sometimes that means he wants me to be showered and dolled up when he gets home from work. I can’t tell you the butterflies I had in my stomach all day, when he casually told me that, before he left for work! Sometimes that means he wants to hold my hand and watch a movie with me. He arranged to take our oldest 3 kids to a birthday party this Saturday, and he told me he would like me to have some “me time” just me and the baby.

Here is the unexpected part.

I didn’t expect to feel so free. I didn’t expect to feel so weightless. I didn’t expect to feel so secure and happy. I didn’t lose myself, I feel like I have FINALLY found myself!

To have him firmly take charge of the family, including and especially of me, has given me the most delicious peace I have ever felt. And, most surprising of all, I didn’t expect it all to be so wildly erotic! I am not kidding! It’s crazy, but I wish the “older women” who are supposed to be teaching the “younger women” would have mentioned that somewhere along the line!

It makes sense in a primal sort of way, God made the males of nearly every type of animal to be the strong defender and protector, to take charge and dominate. When we are not emasculating them with our attitudes and castrating them with our words, when we submit ourselves to their control, it is intensely pleasurable, for both parties.

Now that my husband knows he has 100% control of me, and our family, he has become a new manHe stands taller. His confidence has shot up. He is more…..ruggedly masculine. He is sexier! He is flexing his power, and finding that it’s good, for both of us! He is more relaxed, and so am I. When I think back to how our love life changed, when I was constantly putting him down, demanding, rude…..it totally killed both my libido, and his. No wonder! Somewhere along the line I think that a lot of Christian men (and women) got the idea that “good guys” are wimps. Nothing is further from the truth. In my mind, there is no true goodness without strength. And nothing makes me go weak in the knees like MY man, secure in his God-given strength, in his proper place as MAN of our house! Talk about make a girl swoon! Lol.
So, I had no idea, but there is nothing sexier than my man, taking control of our family, and of me, for my own good! Long before trashy novels and dime store romances, God knew that what a women truly wanted and needed was a strong man, stronger than her, strong enough to not be pushed around by her, strong but GOOD. I gladly entrust myself to such a man.

Instead of “I am woman, hear me roar!”,”I am woman, hear me purr!”

It’s the craziest thing, but I feel more complete, more feminine, more ME than I ever did when I was fighting him for control all the time. I look back now and wonder if I was so busy fighting for crumbs, that I missed the feast God had for me all along.

So, maybe you have addressed this in your blog, I don’t know. But I think somebody should put it out there, lol.

Submission, it’s better than Viagra!  *blush*

Wife 8:

Wowsa!!

Thanks so much for your most recent posts about our attitude toward sex in our marriages! (Post 1Post 2Post 3)  What a difference they have made for me ~ and in just a few days!!! My hubby and I have been married for nearly 9 years, and we went through a “Marriage for Life” class through our past church while we were newly-weds … so we immediately were taught the differences between men and women, our differing roles and how blessed these differences are. I immediately understood his need for the physical, and he immediately understood my need for the emotional … and as we’ve grown in our faith and spent more and more time in the Word, we’ve learned so much about not depriving one another. So, out of love for my husband, even if I didn’t necessarily ‘feel like it’, there were times I would ‘submit to his needs’. Ugh, just saying that sounds so … well, sterile I guess. LOL.

But, I thought I was loving him and being submissive to his needs in this, but I know he could tell when I really wasn’t ‘into’ it, and him being a most unselfish husband I know that his desire is to please me and how hurtful it must have been for him in those moments that I was merely fulfilling my ‘wifely duty’ ~ double ugh … since reading your posts and learning more about how respecting my husband really looks, I am understanding that my desire for him is directly linked to my respect and ADMIRATION of him.

So, in the last couple of weeks I’ve committed to dolling up for him (almost daily now), giving him a kiss when he walks in the door from work and being available to him, and I hug him longer and tighter, and walk over and give him a random kiss for no reason. And for the past few days, I have been receptive to his advances without inhibition and with gladness and joy (even some playful initiation) … and I’ve noticed that just being more available to him has created a refreshed desire for him in me and I find myself anticipating our next encounter … WOW ~ submission really is better than Viagra!

94 Comments on “Respect, Biblical Submission and Sexual Attraction”

  1. Crystal Blount
    March 4, 2013 at 2:53 pm #

    There is something very attractive about a man who is in charge…confident….a leader… in control. It’s a big turn on for me… a man who knows how to use that control in a loving way. Most of us wives have those kind of men, but we (meaning me) have to get our fearful, hurt, angry, mistrusting, jealous, stubborn, controlling, naggy, manipulative, selfish etc. desires out of the way and be ladies and allow ourselves to be led! Prayer is helping with that!

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      March 4, 2013 at 8:52 pm #

      SO TRUE!:)

      Like

    • Nadia Hernandez
      June 19, 2013 at 10:42 am #

      You hit the nail on the head, I’m still working on this as a fairly new wife. It seems impossible at times for me to totally let myself be vulnerable. I try to even control how he drives sometimes. :S

      Like

    • alana
      December 28, 2013 at 5:22 pm #

      that is so true I am the controlling type and submission is very hard for me but it’s amzing how I am not attracted to guys I can easily control but to those who put their feet down it’s a real turn on

      Like

  2. nikole
    March 12, 2013 at 3:43 pm #

    I thank all of your wonderful women of god sharing your stories. i’ve been married for three years and yes it would have been nice to have this type of guidance in my marriage earlier but ive learned from the site what a wife looks like.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      March 12, 2013 at 8:37 pm #

      Nikole,

      Thank you for your comment! I agree – I can’t imagine what a different marriage we could have had if I had this information 19 years ago!?!?! But – I am so thankful that God is giving it to us now and opening our eyes to it now. And now we can pass it along to others and I pray this generation will burst forth as a godly generation – putting God first and committed to doing things His way. Then our children will be so richly blessed! Much love to you!

      Like

  3. LisainVermont
    April 26, 2013 at 8:22 pm #

    Wow. I know this is an old post, but I just read it and it’s just speaking to me in such an amazing, personal way.

    I am exactly like wife #6. Her story is my story; her pain is my pain. I never thought that my behavior could lead my husband to reject me.

    I’ll definitely be trying to emulate some of the positive changes she made in her marriage to see if they will help my situation.

    Thanks for posting this. It’s a difficult subject, but one that a lot of women have questions/concerns about.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      April 26, 2013 at 8:46 pm #

      LisainVermont,

      Yes – this is one of my favorite posts! I saw a huge increase in passion in my husband when I began obeying GOd, stopping all that unintentional disrespect and control and learned to respect and trust him and show appreciation and honor for him.

      You always read and hear that “men want sex all the time” and it is SO PAINFUL when you feel rejected by your own husband. Many husbands have written to me about this – that disrespect kills their desire for their wives. That is not the only reason for lack of libido in husbands, but it is definitely one to consider near the top of the list!

      It can take a long time of being respectful before a husband really feels safe like “Yes, this is for real and she has truly changed.” Ultimately – the results are in God’s hands. But as you obey God, God will give you His peace and joy and spiritual strength you have never had before. And He can give you the power and grace to wait patiently as He works on your husband.

      If the wounds are very deep, it can take many months or even years for a husband to come around. But if the wounds aren’t as severe, sometimes there can be a big difference in a few weeks. It just depends on a lot of variables.

      If you do these things to change your husband- you won’t see results. But if you do them to honor God – God will change you and He can heal your marriage in His timing and His power and His way with you as His partner.

      I can’t wait to see what God has in store for you! I’m here if you want to talk! aprilc@sc.rr.com

      Like

  4. Doreen
    October 2, 2013 at 5:49 am #

    this is so great, we thank God for wonderful and matured women of God like you, who are ready to share. I have been married for only 6 months, thank God my husband is an obedient servant of God and so it has made things very easy so far. But i am grateful to god for leading me to the peacefulwives blog, i believe it will make things even better. God bless you and i hope to learn more.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      October 2, 2013 at 6:29 am #

      Doreen,

      I’m so glad that God is using this blog to bless you.:) Please pray for God to empower me to only speak His truth and to present it clearly. Thank you!!

      Like

  5. mysterytopursue
    March 18, 2014 at 1:22 pm #

    Do you have anything on the husband not liking to touch? As in, if he doesn’t like me touching him (hugs, kisses and holding hands are always begged and initiated by me). Even during sex, there’s nothing other than the “act”. It really breaks me. I love him and I know he loves me but he says he’s never liked being touched by anyone, not even family or friends. I just thought it would be different with his wife (me) but it isn’t. It isn’t trauma so I don’t know what it could be. I don’t even know what to pray for. Is it wrong to pray for him to change? I feel like I’ve tried everything. But he doesn’t like anything that has to do with touch. Even when we sleep we have to have a lot of distance from each other otherwise he doesn’t like it. What makes it worse is that my love language is touch. We’ve been married for 6 months now and I feel so lonely. The thing is, he is my best friend, so it seems like I just live with a man who’s my best friend and we share beds because we have to.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      March 18, 2014 at 1:57 pm #

      Mysterytopursue,

      Thanks for this question! It is a good one. A hard one, too.

      Are his parents affectionate?

      Has he ever been diagnosed with anything like Asperger’s or anything similar?

      What was he like before marriage?

      So – you can tell him what you like. You can ask for what you like – occasionally. But the more you try to force him, the more you will repel him, in my view.

      My husband sleeps apart from me, too. I used to get so upset when we were first married because he turned away from me to go to sleep. I took that very personally. Now I know that he just likes to sleep on that side and that he likes being on a certain side of the bed. It is not personal. It is not a rejection of me. It is just how is likes to sleep.

      I used to take the things he did as personal rejection. That made everything SO HARD! I assumed he had evil and unloving motives towards me. He didn’t. But I responded to him as if he did – and I deeply hurt him and pushed him much, much farther away.

      Have you read “I’m Going to Stop Pursuing My Husband?”

      Or “Bitterness of Soul”?

      A Fellow Wife – who wrote both posts- has a similar scenario in her marriage. They have been married for over 10 years.

      It’s ok to say, “I feel lonely. Would you please hold me for 10 minutes?” with a smile on your face and a friendly tone of voice. But then, let him decide if and when and how he wants to do it. And be gracious if he doesn’t do it.

      How is your walk with Christ going?

      If he really loves having sex with you – he probably wants to see you happy, as well. You can say, “I love it when you do X…” or “It would turn me on so much if you would…” or “Can we take a bath together first?” Or “Would you please give me a massage to help me get ready?” or “I love it when you kiss me and play with my hair through the day – it makes me want you so much.”

      There were several long stretches in our marriage when Greg barely spoke to me, barely touched me and barely looked at me. I was devastated. Now, I know that a lot of it was my disrespect and control. As I backed off and began to be content in Christ alone and stopped pressuring him and pushing him, he began to come to me more. Not as much as I would have wanted – but a lot more than he did before.

      Some of this may be his personality. It will be important to accept him even if he never changes.

      Some of this will be about learning to respectfully ask for what you would like – not all the time – but sometimes – and then being able to accept yes or no graciously.

      Will he let you touch him for awhile and cuddle up to him for a few minutes before he goes to sleep? Will he let you sit beside him on the couch? What does he like? What do you do when you don’t get what you want?

      Let’s walk through this together, ok?

      Like

      • mysterytopursue
        March 18, 2014 at 3:13 pm #

        Thank you so much for your response. Let me try to outline a bit more. His parents show(ed) affection normally to him and his siblings (that like it), but he says that when he was a child he didn’t like hugs or being embraced. He hasn’t ever been diagnosed with Asperger’s, just Synesthesia, but that doesn’t affect anything in our relationship. Before marriage he wouldn’t act as the “normal” guy would because he wouldn’t like to kiss or hug or cuddle or even hold hands, only very rarely when we were by ourselves. It didn’t affect me that much because I just thought he didn’t want to have any temptations. Although not wanting to “freely” hold my hand (without me doing it first or asking) made me sad. We talked about it then and he said he just wasn’t used to it, and that’s not the way he shows love. Everyone kept saying that when men marry they want lots of sex and physical touch, so I was just waiting to marry for things to be “normal”, but that never happened. Also, he’s not into porn or gay.

        I know he doesn’t mean to reject me and doesn’t have an evil intent because he keeps saying he loves me and thinks highly of me (and I know he means it), but deep down it hurts so much not being touched, I can compare myself to a leper.

        It’s good to know it’s more “normal” to not sleep cuddled up. I guess what we fantasise in our minds have to do with the films and pictures we see of couples sleeping together in a spoon way or hugging each other… which is just not at all true in my case.

        I tell him what I like and don’t like but it doesn’t make much difference. If I say I’d like to cuddle he’ll do it, but only for a few seconds then say he’s uncomfortable. So I feel bad for making him do it, even though he agrees to do it. But I also feel bad when he doesn’t. When that happens I normally cry and tell him we need to compromise with a middle term but then we agree a middle term doesn’t exist.

        He says it hurts him that I’m not satisfied with who his is and even though I always try to explain and ask things in a loving way and not mention it all the time I see what he means. Either way one of us suffers. It’s like a lose-lose situation.

        About asking him to do stuff like bathing or massaging or playing with my hair or things like that, I’ve already tried but he either has an excuse or doesn’t do it properly. Like, when he will shower with me but not touch me (just looking is enough for him) and just push on my back once as a massage and say it’s silly, and say he’s not touchy to not play with my hair.

        He really like compliments and eating and cooking with me. I try to do it a lot for him. He likes sex too, but just to release the tension (or so it seems), not really for anything else. He says he feels closer to me after having sex which is good. The thing is, if it is embedded in is personality and never changes, I’m going to suffer a lot. It’s only been 6 months and I already feel filthy and horrible.

        My relationship with Christ is going well, and his too. Everything is going well except the touchy thing. I’ve read those two posts a few months ago but will read them again, thank you.

        We talked about going to counselling but it seems so weird for a newly-wed to go to counselling. I’m so desperate. And we’re both very hurt. Even though everything else is fine, this has become such a major issue that it gobbles up all the good things. ;'(

        Thank you again for listening to me!

        Like

        • peacefulwife
          March 18, 2014 at 4:54 pm #

          Mysterytopursue,

          Well… There is good news and bad news here I think.

          It seems to me that he did not change, that there was no bait and switch. He was pretty straightforward about how he felt about affection before marriage.

          The good news is, you can learn to interpret his love and hear his love in the ways that he displays love for you.

          And, the good news is, you can learn to be completely content in this situation in Christ.

          And, the good news is that sex is probably a lot more than just a physical release for him, it is probably a very emotional and spiritual connection for him, too.

          And the good news is, you can choose whether you are going to suffer in this marriage or whether you are going to savor this marriage even though your husband may not change.

          The bad news is, you can’t change your husband. I mean, you can look at that as bad news.

          But you don’t have to suffer. That is your choice. You can choose to resent him for being who he is or you can choose in God’s power to accept him and build him up and enjoy him.

          We can talk more soon!

          Much love
          April

          Like

          • peacefulwife
            March 18, 2014 at 5:04 pm #

            Mysterytopersue,
            There is nothing wrong with going to counseling now! even if you just go yourself. Did you have premarital counseling at all. Did y’all discuss this issue?

            Like

            • peacefulwife
              March 18, 2014 at 5:07 pm #

              Oh! And… If you can focus on the things he does well and thank and appreciate him for those things, that will be a big help and huge step towards healing. And thank him for sex, and thank him for even a minute of sitting beside you. You may be able to start by just asking for a minute of cuddling, set a timer, and then thank him with a big smile. It is possible he may be able to learn to give more affection, I just don’t know how deep his aversion to affection is. But that could be something a counselor may be able to help with.

              But even if he never changes, there is hope in Christ. You CAN have total joy and peace in Him through this! I promise! That decision is entirely up to you. You have all the control over your emotions and whether you will be content in Jesus or not.

              Like

          • mysterytopursue
            March 19, 2014 at 12:07 pm #

            Thank you again for taking time to write this down. Sometimes the truth hurts a lot and I guess this is one of those cases. It’s difficult because people don’t talk about these things. I guess it’s because they aren’t very common. Thank you so much, April. May God continue blessing you. You’ve helped so many people.

            Like

            • peacefulwife
              March 19, 2014 at 12:15 pm #

              Mysterytopursue,
              Actually, what you are describing is much more common than you would imagine. It just isn’t talked about.

              I am not saying that there is no hope he will ever be affectionate. He may! But – your power and sanity will rest in accepting him as he is and in finding all of your contentment in Christ alone – that is true for ALL of us as wives no matter what our particular difficulties and struggles might be.

              It is possible that as you are not pressuring him and he doesn’t feel like such a failure, he may get some courage to try to stretch out of his comfort zone. But – even if he does not – you can have a beautiful, amazing, intimate, strong, vibrant marriage to the degree that you are willing to completely yield yourself to Christ and walk in His power.

              I believe God will use this trial to draw you to Himself, to help you see how much He longs for closeness to you, and to help you learn to depend on Him more than ever. Actually, I believe that one day, you will see this trial as a blessing.

              There are MANY wives here who have similar situations. You are not alone. This problem is not impossible. It just needs the power of God.:)

              I’m very glad to walk beside you on this road.

              Like

              • peacefulwife
                March 19, 2014 at 12:55 pm #

                MTP,
                I am doing a poll today of my readers – to try to get a better picture of what real life sex lives and real life married affection is like. Maybe we can look at the results together later.:)

                Like

              • peacefulwife
                March 21, 2014 at 1:39 pm #

                Mysterytopursue,

                Ok, so the survey results now have about 430 women responding. That is a pretty decent sample size.:)

                Let’s talk about what we are seeing there.

                Only 18% say that they fall asleep in each other’s arms. Most couples are not touching as they go to sleep. There were a lot of extra comments on this one – showing that many couples don’t go to bed at the same time or don’t even sleep in the same bed at times. Some couples cuddle for awhile before bed – but not that many people are spooning all night like they portray on TV. You know why? Probably because people’s arms would fall asleep if they do that all night!:) A lot of people need their own space to be able to go to sleep. That’s ok.:)

                Only 38% of women say their husband never turns them down sexually. MANY, MANY wives get rejected by their husbands at times. Some are always sexually rejected by their husbands. I am REALLY glad that you and your husband are having sex. That is such a blessing!

                There is a percentage of men who were not very affectionate before marriage. Several of the wives in that situation talk about that in the poll results.

                Affection after marriage seems to have declined a lot in many marriages. I think there are a lot of explanations for that. I hope to do a survey of men, too. But, it is my understanding that most men value sexual touching a lot more than affectionate touching.

                76% of wives say that their husband’s affection is very important or extremely important to them. Only 3% don’t like their husband’s affection. Affection tends to be a VERY big thing for women. I don’t think most men realize this!

                It is not wrong for us to love affection, just like it is not wrong for them to love sex. But – I do think that there is much hope for you and that there are ways to communicate your needs and desires without pressuring your husband. I also believe that it is possible to give him some grace for just having a very different personality and different needs from yours. I believe that God can bring healing here.

                I hope to talk more about some of these topics in future weeks.

                I hope that maybe these poll questions might help you to see that you are not the only one in this situation and that there are a number of other wives in this situation, as well. Sometimes conflicting needs and desires in marriage are DIFFICULT to deal with – but – God is completely able to use all of this for good for you and for His glory.

                How are you feeling about things today? I wish I could hug your neck!

                You may want to read the comments on the poll post. I think they may be comforting in some ways – this was a painful subject for so many wives!

                Like

  6. Jeff
    April 27, 2014 at 7:20 pm #

    What I keep hearing is that women do not want to relinquish control and authority. I know that I need to “take over.” There is so much damage in so many areas that I’m not sure where to start. So I will start with my attitude as the husband. It seems that my wife does not trust me in many ways. A woman cannot disrobe (both literally and figuratively) in front of her husband, comfortably, unless she trusts him and his leading. I see this in my overly modest wife. (modest behind closed/locked door). Repercussions of her not letting go of the reins, will be refusal for sex and more excuses for not having sex. I see a battle looming for me. I know the Bible and HE knows me. Already I am drawing battle lines (gently), it must be done, I have been a pansy for too long. I spent my time building a great body, running marathons and she was hardly impressed. Perhaps an addition of biblical respect and a caring husband in both attitude and performance is needed here. I don’t know what I’m doing, but I see the disrespect in so many places its like mole popping at Chucky Cheese! Wish me luck and prayer. It begins yesterday.

    Like

    • peacefulwife
      April 27, 2014 at 8:46 pm #

      Jeff,
      Women do not usually want to relinquish control because of HUGE fear. And if a wife had been abused as a child or abused sexually or has mental illness or is involved in addictions… Then there would be added baggage and complications to the normal control and trust issues. Also if her parents did not have a healthy marriage, whatever their marriage was like will probably seem “normal” to her and she may have a lot of healing to do from that experience growing up. If her mom was very controlling, she may have learned for 18+ years that this is what womanhood and femininity is supposed to be. Or if she saw her mom being abused, then , she may have decided to be in Control herself and never let herself trust a man because she is not going to end up like her mom.

      If she has a history of romantic relationships where she was mistreated or where she was with a very passive man, she also may have picked up a lot of habits there. And, many times, professional women and women who go to college pick up a lot of messages about being independent and controlling and dominating in college and in the world.

      There are some books for husbands about godly leadership, although, not nearly as many as for wives about marriage and being a godly wife. My husband scoured the internet to look for resources for his blog http://www.respectedhusbsnd.Wordpress.com, and found that some of the best books were simply about godly leadership in general.

      Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs has a lot of help for husbands, so does Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas and Grace Filled Marriage by Dr. Tim Keller.

      Daniel, a guest writer for my blog, has a blog with a lot of posts for husbands at http://www.godshelpformarriage.com. And the Christian marriage Bloggers Association has some blogs aimed at helping husbands in this critical task of love and godly leadership.

      All of us, men and women, have been so wounded and crippled by our culture, we all have to basically throw out everything we thought we knew about godly masculinity, godly femininity and godly marriage and rebuild on Christ and His Word alone. That is what I sure had to do, and I grew up in a Christian home, but still missed all of this.

      I may have already mentioned, but David Platt’s series about biblical manhood and womanhood is very good and you can download all of the notes for free at http://www.radical.net. John piper also has some extremely helpful messages about biblical manhood and marriage at http://www.desiringgod.org.

      Of course I will pray for you to draw close to God, to find His truth and to have wisdom and His powerful love and gentleness to begin to set things right in your family and marriage.

      Only God can open your wife’s eyes. But it is a gift to her if you are able to share some of these things with her, she will find such peace and joy if she is willing to seek to trust Christ fully and completely submit to Him, and so will you.:)

      Wives are often much more impressed by loving words and romantic gestures and little things that show thoughtfulness and attention, little love notes for no reason, helping her with the children or chores, asking her to share her heart, inviting her to pray with you, giving her more attention that the TV or computer, and a man who knows what is right and stands on his convictions.

      A lot of women are not very visual, so a fit body may not be a big turn on as much as your words of love and your affection and attention, strong godly, selfless leadership and your Christlikeness. Galatians 5:22-23.

      Praying for you both!

      Like

      • peacefulwife
        April 27, 2014 at 8:52 pm #

        Jeff,

        Oh, I didn’t develop the fear thing well enough..

        The fear stems ultimately from a lack of faith and trust in Christ. It really is all about her walk with Him. As you are closer and closer to Jesus and she learns she can trust you, you may be able to guide her to deeper faith in Christ. Your obedience to God makes it easier for her to obey God, but only God can truly open her eyes. Usually, a wife’s fear is very firmly rooted in her understanding, or lack of understanding of God and self. These are not usually conscious things. She may think she does trust God, but if the fruit of her life is worry, anxiety, fear and loneliness, not love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control, then self is in control, the old sinful self, not God’s spirit. When God’s spirit is not in control, that is usually a result of us cherishing sin in our heart – disobedience, disrespect, pride, self righteousness unforgiveness, resentment, bitterness, gossip, lust, jealousy, hatred, contempt, etc… Or sometimes we don’t have God’s spirit because we have not trusted Him and submitted ourselves to Him. he gives us the valve to control how much of His spirit we allow into our lives. He only fills us when we invite Him and submit fully to Him.

        Like

    • peacefulwife
      April 27, 2014 at 8:53 pm #

      And the real battle is against our enemy, and against sin, not against each other.

      Like

    • peacefulwife
      April 30, 2014 at 9:20 am #

      A video from my Youtube channel that may be helpful possibly for husbands?
      <a href="“>

      Like

  7. WifeyJen
    May 3, 2014 at 9:24 am #

    I think in many marriages the husband really wants the wife to initiate sex to show him that she WANTS him. You have to be wise about things – is he exhausted, sick, etc. And not take it personally if he’s not in the mood because honestly we’re not always in the mood, either.http://tolovehonorandvacuum.com/2010/12/wifey-wednesday-why-youve-got-to/

    Like

  8. patricia
    September 26, 2014 at 11:38 am #

    just an added thought that may or may not apply in any given marriage; sometimes not wanting to be touched or overly intimate with someone can be because of offense or violation; if the person’s sense of integrity or dignity is compromised in some way, they react by trying to protect the integrity of their inner person, hence the withdrawal. It can be about the spousal relationship. It can also be about family of origin stuff too; for instance if a family is the kind that is shaming, derogatory, rides roughshod over the person if they share their vulnerabilities and subjects the person to humiliation, ridicule, shaming punishment if they speak the truth, this habit of withdrawal will be very ingrained as a form of self protection. They will be even more reaction than the average bear, if you know what I mean.

    The person will come to the marriage table/bed and take sparingly just enough to meet their needs but hold themselves aloof otherwise. One of the biggies that causes problems can be having engaged in premarital sex, esp. if both of you knew that you were going too far and that it was wrong. Even in cases where couples may not have been saved and thought it was okay or justified it, there is often an instinctive sense of having been robbed of something precious and resulting in a loss of trust and respect both towards the other and the self. Sometimes through worldly and ungodly teaching, or because of sheer neediness and insecurity, or poor boundaries, etc. a woman will push for sexual involvement during courtship, even if its petting and intimidate necking that stops short of intercourse because she’s been told or taught that this is what men want, and what she must do to avoid losing him. Or because this is what she is familiar with. Perhaps she had a daddy who was into porn and a womanizer; the message one would pick up in such a situation would be highly sexualized and likely absorbed without the ability to critically evaluate them, thus they would become part of the “worldview” and way of life of the person so affected.

    Self protective withdrawal as a regular way of life is still sin and must be dealt with but these are some of the pathways that help us get there. We have to strike a balance between having some respect for the differences in personality we all have, and yet not using them as an excuse to evade obedience towards God either; respect for God’s ways must trump respect for our ways. Regardless of the reason, it is still wrong to defraud your marriage partner of loving, cherishing, obedience and respect, etc. Yet God’s way of rectifying these situations is not to take matters into our own hands and force the issue in a violating way that compounds the problem.

    I’m concerned that a person who is really anxious for involvement will read this and immediately begin a pressured conversation with their hubby, demanding information on whether or not he is hurt or offended about something. A guarded person will not open up until they feel safe and until they feel integrity is restored to the relationship, that the change is real enough to trust, so I’d suggest following April’s advice on beginning the process of turning to Christ and trusting and obeying Him without demand or pressure on hubby to reward us by doing the snoopy dance and immediately gushing with all sorts of emotional approval or intimate sharing:). I am thinking that our work is more about arriving at a place of utter humility and total submission to Christ before its about trying to have that wonderful marriage we’ve idealized and dreamed of. I’ve certainly got MY work cut out for me here:)

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      September 26, 2014 at 11:42 am #

      Patricia,

      Wow. This is so good!

      THANK YOU so much! I hope you don’t mind if I refer ladies to read your comment from the post. This is very, very helpful!

      Like

      • patricia
        September 26, 2014 at 1:03 pm #

        Not at all:) Feel free to take what’s useful.

        Like

  9. Mrs. R
    January 25, 2015 at 11:54 am #

    April,

    I am a few months into the process of releasing control and letting my husband lead. We had a very big fallout because of my disrespect and lack of support. He closed his dream business and left to go with his family for a month. Even before we had our big fallout, our sex life wasn’t all that active- and I was basically the one to blame. He tried to initiate for the most part (we’ve been married for three years now) but I always felt it like a “duty’ and never really felt all that willing. I am pretty sure it was because I did not respect him and the roles were reversed. I wasn’t very feminine and I didn’t see him as very masculine since I was in control. The months leading to our big fall out, I was the one initiating and he wasn’t very interested. It kind of felt “forced” if it did happen.

    He left in October and came back at the end of the month…since then, I have been trying to be respectful and show him that I am actually changing. I followed your advice and apologized ( he didn’t really want to hear yet another apology since he had been telling me for years I was disrespectful) but I told him that this time it was different because I was including God in the process, but I still don’t think he’s very convinced. Things have become less tense than when he first came back. He now holds my hand and cuddles to me in bed on occasion…the other day we actually hugged for quite a bit of seconds, which was something new…and he does give me a kiss when we say hello and goodbye, but it is just a quick peck. I have tried to initiate sex with him twice since he’s been back- and the first time he thought I was joking, because I playfully insinuated it and he just laughed, but when I told him I was serious, he just said ” nope…not yet.” Then I tried again last week, but he again said no. I told him ” I know I have made mistakes in the past and I cannot change what I have done but I am working on the present and the future. I want to make love to my husband. ” And he simply said, “It takes two…and I don’t want to.”

    My question is: should I keep initiating? It has been almost 6 months since we’ve been intimate and I have tried two times since then. He also still doesn’t say the words “I love you” although every time he or I leave, he tells me to be careful and says “God bless you.”

    I know he is deeply wounded and I need to give him time, but it really does hurt to feel rejected. I know in other areas of our lives we are improving, although last night we met up with some friends where they told us that he had decided to quit his job to start a business (they have four kids) and how it was difficult but his wife was fully supporting him. He congratulated her on doing that. I just feel that when he sees other wives supporting their husband, it opens the wound back up and all everything I am doing to try and change and prove to him that I am supporting him goes down the drain…. because he compares me with wives that do support their husband…even if he doesn’t know all of the behind the scenes and work that has gone into her being able to do that.

    Mrs. R.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      January 25, 2015 at 1:41 pm #

      Mrs. R.,

      Hello, my precious sister! I am excited about all that God is doing in your life. That is AWESOME!

      Here are some words of encouragement to you, my sweet friend:

      – This is a LONG, LONG journey. There will be a period of many months, perhaps longer, where your husband will not yet be able to trust and believe all the changes that God is doing in you are real. This is actually a blessing in many ways because when your husband continues to be skeptical and doesn’t change – you are forced to examine your motives and to determine to do this only for God, not in an attempt to change your husband.

      – Your husband is being very clear about where he is and what his boundaries are. Things are definitely moving in the right direction. But he doesn’t feel safe enough with you to have sex yet. You have shared your desire to have sex with him. I think you did it in a very respectful, beautiful way. Now, I personally vote to wait on him to make the first move to initiate sex. He will do it when he feels whole enough and safe enough with you. I wish he was ready to have sex already – but if he has been feeling extremely controlled and disrespected, it may take him time to heal. That has to be ok.

      – Yes it hurts greatly to feel rejected by your own husband. I have a post about that here.

      – I vote not to read anything about how much husbands want sex all the time – those kinds of posts and books are going to make you feel very discouraged. Not going to be helpful. I also vote to prayerfully consider avoiding romantic books/movies that may feed your desire for greater intimacy with your husband than he is comfortable giving you right now, and to just focus on allowing God to change you. Jesus is sufficient. He is able to meet all of your emotional and spiritual needs. And He is able to give you the ability to wait patiently as He works in your husband and marriage to bring healing. I would also suggest having very careful boundaries with other men. Probably best to avoid private conversations, emails, texting, working alone with men, conversations about your marriage or spiritual life with other men. I want to try to minimize temptation for you.

      Is he able to tell you the things he specifically desires you to stop doing or start doing?

      You are making big time progress in Christ. You are on the right path.

      How is your time with God going?

      Much love!
      April

      Like

      • Mrs. R
        January 25, 2015 at 10:08 pm #

        April,

        Thank you so much for your words. It has truly been a blessing to have stumbled upon your blog. It is comforting to know that I am not alone in this and that I am not the only one who struggles.

        It is hard when our other couple friends tell stories of how supportive they are to one another because I feel that my husband uses that as the standard of comparison and feel that he thinks “see, why can’t you be like her…see how much support she gives her husband” – although he doesn’t verbalize it- but I know it frustrates him that we had to have a fallout before I reacted. Even if he doesn’t see it though, it is comforting to know that other wives were just like me…and it took time for them to get to the point that my husband sees in other wives.

        Before our big fallout he had told me what he needed:

        -To feel respected
        -To support him

        At the time I didn’t really know what that looked like, so I thought I was respecting him and supporting him, but I was trying to make things happen the way I wanted, the way I thought was best for us…so of course I was respecting and supporting him- I was looking out for our future, right? Absolutely wrong.

        After our fallout and before he left in October he opened his heart like never before. He has always been a very laid back, strong, peaceful man…always positive, but this time he said he had reached his limit, he couldn’t do it anymore- nothing made me happy, I was never satisfied- he wasn’t about to live his life like that. Life was too beautiful to live the way we were living and he was just not going to do it anymore…he would rather live alone than how we were living now.. He said he had given me everything he had and he just couldn’t give anymore. He had lost himself and needed to leave for a while to think and see what it was he really wanted…and then he made me promise that if when he came back I didn’t change, that I had to give him the divorce without any drama…that now it was up to me…it was my turn to write the book- that he was done. When he came back he told me he realized he could live without me…and that was something he didn’t think he could do before he left. So scary!

        I had a very difficult time that month that he was gone, but it was during that time that I found you and your blog and I began realizing what it was I was doing and the reasons why I couldn’t respect and support him- because of my controlling nature, because the roles were reversed and because of my lack of relationship with God. I also recently had the realization that I never thought of my husband as not being good enough or him needing to change until we decided to get married. My mother did not approve ( and still does not) of him because she thought I should have married a different type of man-someone that resembled my dad and my brother’s career path and background. I realized that I was trying to change my husband into the kind of man that my mother would approve of…and that meant putting pressure into what kind of job he should have, what kind of provider he should be…I thought I was supporting him by pushing him into a direction that would make him be the man my mother wanted for me to marry. Oh boy-was I so wrong. Instead of pushing him to become better, I completely broke him down.

        I pray every day…I ask God to please bless my husband, to restore our marriage…to help my husband and I delight in each other…for God to take away any bitterness and resentfulness in my husband’s heart and to replace it with His love…to put the desire he once felt for me back in his heart as well as the desire to start a family…for His will to be done, not mine. Because my husband clearly said when he came back that starting a family was definitely not in the plans any time soon ( if at all because of how disrespectful I was and who knew if our relationship would even make it), this has been very hard. I realize that children had become an idol for me…so I am still struggling to let that idea go. How do you know when you have completely given your desires up to God? I feel so empowered sometimes when I am praying and I feel Jesus is all I need…that I am leaving it up to Him, but then sometimes, something triggers it and I feel like I have regressed because I start thinking about the “what ifs?”

        I hate feeling like I was just “faking it” when I was praying…thinking to myself I had actually let it go. I don’t know how to let it go…is it just time? I feel like I should just be able to leave it on the altar and walk away, but I find myself picking it up again and leaving it again and then going back for it…I really want to let it go, but I don’t seem to know how exactly.

        Like

        • Peacefulwife
          January 26, 2015 at 6:51 am #

          Mrs. R.,

          Perhaps you can think back through the stories that impacted your husband where he felt a wife was being supportive of her husband and dissect the behaviors that he felt were respectful and supportive? Or, perhaps you can talk with the wife of these couples about learning to be more respectful and ask them about how they look at things and how they respond to different situations?

          The good news is that your husband is verbalizing how he thinks and feels – so you don’t have to guess about that. Some husbands cannot verbalize their thoughts like this – so you don’t have to walk in the dark. That is a blessing!

          How is your walk with Christ going? Have you read my posts about babies being an idol?

          Letting go the desire for children?

          Please search “submission hold things loosely” and see if that post helps to explain it more clearly.

          I’m right here and we can continue to talk as we walk this road together.:)

          Sending you a huge hug!

          Like

  10. sindew
    June 30, 2015 at 6:09 pm #

    prove :31:30 ,prove :12:4

    Like

  11. Leah
    July 3, 2015 at 4:43 am #

    This, is why, I will never ever submit myself into the mistake of marriage. Maybe I will fall in love, maybe I will have he desire to be with this person for the rest of my life, but never will I ever be able to be the wife that acts like she’s nothing just so her husband can ‘be the man’. Why on earth should he get to tell me what to wear just because he has a penis between his legs? That makes him a dictator, over my flipping clothes?? Are you joking? Im putting the well being of myself, in my hands. If these are Gods rules, then I can’t play the game at all. Respect to all the women who like feeling dominated, I hope you live a happy marriage, that is certainly not me. Just goes to show that God really did create some people to be alone. Thank goodness I’m figuring all this out before I end up married, otherwise that would be awful. I am the boss of myself. That’s that.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      July 3, 2015 at 7:40 am #

      Leah,

      This is a very warped understanding of God’s design for marriage – a common misunderstanding – but a very great misunderstanding. What you are describing isn’t at all what I teach or what God’s Word teaches. Makes me very sad to hear what you think God is saying.

      What is your relationship with Christ and with the Bible?

      The same good God who created women to need love created men to need respect. We all need both things, but women especially tend to deaire love in marriage, and men especially tend to desire respect. In a godly marriage, love and respect are given in both directions. But God assigns the leadership position to the husband – not because he deserves it or is “better than” his wife, but because this is God’s wise design. Both cannot lead. And the dynamics get really messed up when a wife tries to lead, as evidenced in my “about” page.

      A husband leading does not mean that he dominates or abuses his wife. He is also not a dictator. He is to be a selfless, humble, loving leader who will answer to God and be accountable for every thought, word, and action to the only God in the universe. God didn’t create marriage to be a tyrant and slave relationship – but a king and queen kind of relationship. A decent man who feels honored and respected by his wife will treat her very well. God designed men to want to serve and love those who honor them just like He designed women to want to honor a man who loves her and treats her well.

      A wife honoring her husband’s leadership does not mean she has no influence or voice. She is her husband’s most trusted advisor, contributing all of herself, her ideas, her passion, her intelligence, her desires, and her needs to the marriage. I have a number of posts about this. You can search my home page for “influence” and “voice” for a few of them.

      Ultimately, a wife submits to Christ, not to her husband. Jesus is the ultimate authority, never a human. And submission is not slavery or passivity. I know that is the definition of submission in the world, but God’s definition of submission is very different – and that is what I am talking about here.

      As sinful men or women, we all tend to be too controlling/dominating or too passive/unplugged. Both of those are sinful distortions of masculinity and femininity. Both of those extremes are destructive for men and for women in marriage. God wants to empower us to be in the middle of those sinful extremes, flying above them by the power of His Spirit working in us to display His love, His honor, and His character.

      I’m so sorry for the pain you seem to be experiencing on this issue. The good news is that the things you are so afraid of are not things God requires of anyone. I pray God might give you eyes to see clearly.

      God’s design is good and freeing. It is not about a woman having less value. Men and women have equal value before God (Gal. 3:28) It is about how God provides for, protects, and blesses everyone in a family and how He promotes order and causes a marriage to beautifully display the Gospel.

      For a much longer explanation and answer to your objections and concerns, please check out the free download Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood – edited by Wayne Grudem and John Piper at http://www.cbmw.org/resources/

      Much love to you!

      Like

  12. M's Husband
    November 28, 2015 at 9:55 pm #

    We are Christian and did not have sex until we were married. My wife did not want sex from the first day we married. The few times she allowed me to be sexual with her during our first year, it was about as pleasant for her as getting a root canal. The second year, I managed to have sex one time. I asked her more than 150 times with total rejection.

    A month ago I decided to search the Scriptures and found 1 Corinthians 7:2-5. Now she submits to me when I desire sex but she is quite vocal about her disgust of any sex.

    It is nothing for me except a relief of pressure in my prostrate. There is no emotion or feeling in my heart.

    I pray that my wife will one day learn to enjoy the pleasure that I want to give her and all the love that I have for her.

    She is such a wonderful marriage partner in every other way. She was a “good girl” and she needs to realize that good girls must have sex with their husbands. I am praying and waiting for her but it can be so hard and such a burden to get sex from my wife.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      November 29, 2015 at 9:28 pm #

      M’s Husband,

      Such a painful situation, my brother.😦 My heart breaks for you both.

      How long have you been married?

      Did she learn that sex is dirty in marriage? Is she willing to seek godly counsel or speak with a godly mentoring wife or read a book about God’s beautiful design for sex in marriage?

      Did she experience sexual abuse before marriage? Is she afraid?

      Praying for healing for you both!

      Like

  13. Mia
    December 1, 2015 at 10:39 am #

    I’m sorry, but this is ridiculous. “Purring, watering down your personality, dolling up…” really? What you’re saying is that your husband can’t love you unless you’re a certain way which sets women back a 1,000 years. So if I don’t suck up to my husband and “make him feel like a man” in other words “let him boss me around like I’m some puppet with no opinions or feelings, then he won’t care about me?” That in my opinion is a very selfish self-absorbed man and you honestly make God look chauvinist. Whatever happened to mutual submission-which I know is in the Bible-companionship,togetherness and joint leadership? Look, I’m all for respecting your partner and valuing their opinions and I’m not saying that I want to boss my husband around or tell him what to do. I’m just saying that I am equally as important as my husband and therefore if he wants me to listen to him, he’s going to have to listen to me too. Because we are a team. We should make decisions together. What you’re describing is sexual slavery: A master-servant relationship and not a loving marriage. Do you also advice women to stay in emotionally abusive relationships because “oh he’s always right and oh he hasn’t hit you?” Subservience isn’t love. Subservience won’t sustain your marriage. TEAMWORK AND MUTUAL COMPROMISE WILL. Why should a woman have to do all the compromising? C’mon!! You’re no different from the 50 Shades of Gray Peeps

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      December 1, 2015 at 11:11 am #

      Mia,
      Thank you so much for commenting! And wow! It seems you are greatly misunderstanding my message.

      No! This isn’t about a husband bossing his wife around. It isn’t about a wife having no opinions or feelings. It isn’t about that a husband can’t love his wife unless she does X, Y, and Z. If that is what you are hearing – I promise – you are not hearing me correctly.

      This is not a master/servant relationships, but a king/queen relationship. It is not sexual slavery – it is about each person being completely submitted to Christ and about each person treating the other with love, respect, gentleness, compassion, thoughtfulness, consideration, and honor.

      This is not about men being always right. They aren’t. They are not deity. They are sinful people, too.

      Women are not the only ones compromising. Men are to love their wives as Christ loved the church and gave up His life for her. But I don’t write for men here -so I don’t talk about all the commands God has for them. They have MORE accountability and responsibility to God than wives do, however.

      This is not about 50 Shades of Gray. That couldn’t be further from what I am talking about! I don’t EVER promote subservience or a wife being a doormat.

      I don’t believe that Scripture teaches “mutual submission” the way many believe it does today. Verse 21 in Ephesians 5 is not directed to husbands and wives but to the church as a whole. Then verses 22-33 are directed to husbands and wives. To have mutual submission the way many believe today – we would have to assume verse 21 was talking to husbands and wives and we would have to ignore all of the other verses in the rest of the chapter and the other verses about about marriage in the New Testament. For a more detailed explanation of what this means, please check out Spiritual Authority or The Danvers Statement.

      Here are some posts that may clarify if you are interested:

      Do I Condone Abuse or Marital Rape?

      Where Do Hatred, Rage, and Violence Fit into Our Live as Believers?

      Husbands Are Not Always Right

      Husbands Are Never the Absolute Authority

      Being a Doormat Doesn’t Glorify God Either

      Biblical Submission Is Not Passivity

      A Husband’s and a Wife’s Authority in Marriage

      Do I Have to Lose My Voice, My Power, or My Identity?

      The Pendulum Effect

      Much love to you!

      Like

      • Mia
        December 2, 2015 at 11:09 am #

        Well, I was probably misunderstanding you and if I came of as accusatory/ defensive then I’m sorry. I am also impressed with how graciously you answered because someone else might have been angry. It’s just that I come from a background where men have taken advantage of the scriptures to treat women unfairly so I’m inclined to think women get the short end of the stick in Christian marriages. I want to know what you think about a few things
        1.How then do you submit as a Christian wife but not be a pushover?
        2.What if you’re the breadwinner of the family? I’m sure you are aware that some women earn more than men in some homes
        3. If both the man and the woman work, I would advocate for financial independence as would many others, would you?
        4.As you can already tell, I’m a big supporter of gender equality. That we’re wired differently does not mean that one sex is superior to the other or that one should defer to the other. Why are so many christians opposed to gender equality? All we are saying is that we are people too and we deserve to have the same opportunities as men do. Would that be so bad?Why do Christians hate feminism so much?
        5. When I said 50 Shades of Gray, I meant the objectification and the whole sub/dom thing and not that you were literally telling us to allow men to do that to us LOL. Which, btw, 50 shades of gray is stupid
        P.S
        I probably sounded / sound like a jaded feminist. Well maybe I am, because I haven’t had the best male role models/ father figures. Honestly, if you grew up the way I did you’d have feminist inclinations too. But I am constantly learning and evolving so hearing things from your standpoint would be nice.

        Like

        • Peacefulwife
          December 2, 2015 at 8:53 pm #

          Mia,

          Thank you for your apology and willingness to consider that you may have misunderstood me.:) I appreciate your perspective and concerns and believe that your important questions deserve real answers.

          I would never have called myself a feminist before 7 years ago when God woke me up to my LARGE mountain of sin. But, when I began to study feminism, I realized that I had absorbed a LOT of feminist ideas – not even realizing the origin of the ideas. I am a pharmacist. I made all As growing up. Got a full scholarship to the university in my town. I am a Type A, go-getter. I made the lion’s share of our income as a couple for the first 16 years of our marriage.

          I totally understand how difficult these concepts are for women from our culture. I know it took me 2.5 YEARS to begin to feel like I had any idea what it actually meant to respect my husband in real life and it took way longer than that for me to feel like I had ANY clue what it meant to submit to Christ and to submit to my husband in a God-honoring way – rather than being a doormat or being a dominant, control-freak. When I say it took years – I am talking about spending 3-5 hours almost every day for that entire time reading, studying, praying, begging God to help me understand what it means to be a godly wife – what respect means – what biblical submission means… I was always an honors student – but this topic was SO hard for me to wrap my mind around. I felt like I needed “respect for dummies” or something. Learning to understand God’s design and His wisdom involved having to tear out almost everything I thought I knew about femininity, masculinity, marriage, relationship dynamics, and my perspective and rebuilding from scratch. So – I understand the frustration and how difficult this topic is!

          I never saw men treat women unfairly – much less use Scripture to do so. But I certainly understand that if women had father-figures who were very dominating and/or abusive toward their mothers or toward themselves, that will make it much more challenging to see God’s Word without distortion.

          I actually believe that women get the BEST position in marriage. We get to be nurtured, cared for, provided for in many ways, insulated, and protected. The heavy lifting is on our husband’s shoulders spiritually and emotionally in God’s design – in my understanding. AND – we get to use the gifts and talents God has given us to inspire our men to become the heroes God created them to be. It is the most amazing thing ever to watch God begin to work in your husband’s life as you trust Him and to see Him cause your husband to stand taller and to become the godly man you always knew he could be. But we don’t force them into that like I used to try to do – we (in God’s Spirit’s power) inspire them.

          1. I have a lot of posts about this. You can search my home page for – submission, and submit. The real key is to be filled with God’s Spirit first. Then we are approaching our marriages and husbands in the power of God from a position of great strength in Christ with all of the resources and power of heaven at our disposal.

          2. I have been the primary breadwinner in our family – and the principles don’t change at all. Yes, it is more tempting to think, “I brought in more money, so I should have more control” – but it is best, in my view, to put the money together (in most cases) and to think of it all as “our money.” And it is helpful to think of it as God chose to put my husband in the driver’s seat. Even if I make more money, he is still in the driver’s seat. True, if he goes unconscious or has a heart attack or falls asleep, I may need to grab the wheel to get us to the side of the road safely. But even if I am an awesome driver, I can’t drive very well from the passenger’s seat. If I try to take the wheel from my husband when I am in the passenger’s seat, I will probably wreck the family – that is what I did for the first 14+ years of our marriage. That is why my husband became so shut down and passive.😦

          3. See #2. God created us to be one flesh. We are to be united in so many ways. I personally believe that separating the finances creates a spirit of independence rather than a spirit of interdependence. An independent spirit makes it easy to leave. Of course, an enmeshed spirit is very unhealthy, as well, in the opposite direction – where we make our spouse an idol. There is an interdependent spirit that is healthy in the middle of those two sinful extremes. That is the goal. Ultimately, this is a decision each couple must make for themselves. But I advocate joint finances and a “team approach.” You can search – money and finances – on my home page for posts about this.

          4. I’m a big supporter of the idea that all people are of equal value in God’s sight. Men and women were both made in God’s image. And in Christ, there is no male or female – we are all joint heirs with Christ! But I am also a supporter of God’s wisdom being much higher than ours as humans – and I am a huge supporter of God’s design for gender roles in marriage. I don’t want to add to what God’s Word says. But I also don’t want to take away. I lived in my own wisdom for a long time – and almost destroyed our marriage. When I began to truly seek God and His wisdom – He healed me, my husband, and our marriage. I long for everyone to get to experience that!:)

          A few books that are very helpful for understanding feminism in light of Scripture:
          – Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, edited by John Piper and Wayne Grudem
          – Radical Womanhood by Carolyn McCulley

          The second book is shorter and easier to understand. But here is a summary – many of the leading feminists over 100 years ago were atheists. Many of them hated God. They also hated the Bible, marriage, men, and family. They hated children. They believed that for a woman to be married was oppression. They believed that for a woman to be home with her children was slavery. They had a very intentional purpose to undermine God’s character and existence, to undermine the authority of the Bible, and to destroy God’s design for marriage, authority in the family, sexuality, femininity, masculinity, and the rearing of children.

          Ultimately – feminism says that men and women are the same. It goes beyond being “equal” to being “interchangeable.” There were 3 waves of feminism.

          – The first one involved women’s sufferage and women being able to be pastors (even though God’s Word prohibits that). They put themselves above God’s Word in the church. That is a problem. If they are above the Bible, they can decide what is right and true and they can toss the Bible aside.

          – The second wave was a push for birth control, abortion, and women to be equal in the work place. Over 59 million babies in our country have died because of feminism. That is a big deal to those who view all human life as being sacred. The other problem is – women didn’t just want to be treated as equal in the work place, they came home and demanded the same thing at home. They threw out respect for their husbands. They began to try to tell their husbands what to do and split things “50/50” according to their own standards. They began to believe they knew better than their husbands and began to discount their husbands’ feelings to the point where a lot of husbands today don’t feel they have a voice in their marriage – as my husband felt for so long. We often thought we were being “equal” but, lots of times, we actually became dominant (like I did). We threw out being teammates and embracing our differences as men and women in order to become competitors with our husbands. That repels them. They don’t want to compete with us. They want to love us, adore us, and make us happy.

          – The third wave of feminism promotes porn as “empowering” for women, promotes promiscuity, promotes gender fluidity, and homosexual relationships. In fact, the third wave of feminism has the goal of completely dismantling the nuclear family and disassociating child rearing from biology.

          If women and men are “the same” – it has to follow that they are “interchangeable” and what difference does it make then if you have a man and a woman, two women, or two men – or a big group of people, or a big group of men, or a big group of women? If they are the exact same – it doesn’t matter at all if you change things around and have transgender identities and homosexual “marriage.”

          5. Some people think I am talking about BDSM or CDD – that is NOT AT ALL what Scripture teaches or promotes. I have posts about that, too!:)

          I’m really sorry that you had such a painful experience growing up – and maybe didn’t have godly men who were loving, kind, gentle, protective, good, patient, nurturing, and trustworthy. I long for every child to have a godly dad! (and mom!) We tend to assume that God is just like our dad. We tend to transfer whatever qualities our human father had onto God and think that God is like that. If we had a very ungodly father figure, it is important to break down our understanding of God and rebuild it based on the truth of God’s Word rather than a very imperfect man who failed us.

          Much love to you!

          Like

          • Peacefulwife
            December 2, 2015 at 9:10 pm #

            Mia,

            Oh! The second wave of feminism also pushed and won the “no fault divorce” laws in the US. That made divorce VERY easy and has led to the destruction of millions of families. I am sure you are familiar with the fall out and the astronomical price that is paid by children in such situations. Jesus says that God makes a husband and wife one – and that no human is to separate husband and wife except for cases of immorality (there is debate about the exact meaning). Marriage is to be a sacred covenant that lasts a lifetime.

            Obviously, sometimes with sinners, separation can be necessary – which is why there is I Corinthians 7 that discusses that. But God is a God who hates divorce (Malachi 2) and who loves to fix broken people and relationships and make something beautiful from them. His love is mighty to save and strong to heal.:)

            It is tough to summarize two books in such a short space – but maybe it will give you the general idea.:)

            Like

            • Mia
              December 4, 2015 at 1:38 pm #

              Thank you for being so accommodating. I mean, you make submission not sound so bad and yes I have been traumatised as I do come from a background where regular, church-going men have used scriptures to justify abuse.Because of that, it’s so easy for me to get furious when I see the word “submission” as I’ve come to associate it with servitude and abuse. I’ll admit that when I saw your post I was ready to go all “Women have opinions too” on you.But having taken the time to read your explanations, as much as it sucks to admit this:-/, I was wrong to judge you so hastily and I apologise. It has affected me so much that growing up I never wanted to get married. However, I’m in my early 20s now and I realise that I do want a life partner:It’s just that I’m petrified because I’m afraid of being abused. I just want a friend, you know?Not a master. And I honestly think hardcore,atheist lesbian feminists are traumatised people who didn’t get the help they needed, which is why they appear so cynical.
              You know, I guess when I say gender equality in marriage, I mean that if I want my husband to treat me a certain way, I must treat him that way. Eg: I’m very independent and I have a mind of my own. And I expect my husband to have a mind of his own and not be a pushover. I will value his opinion but he’s going to have to listen to me too because I have lots of them:)). I’m afraid I’m going to have to bombard you with questions again. For some inexplicable reason, I feel like you can help me

              Like

              • Peacefulwife
                December 4, 2015 at 2:17 pm #

                Mia,

                Submission – in God’s design – is VERY different from what the world describes using the same word. VERY, VERY different.

                This is a tough topic, especially for women who have been mistreated or abused or who saw men misuse Scripture to try to dominate women in sinful, destructive, distorted ways. I definitely understand that. I am completely patient with women who have a lot of questions. I had a lot of questions myself – even though my Daddy was super loving and sweet and I never was abused by him or saw a man use the Bible to spiritually or emotionally abuse a wife.

                Of course women have opinions! We are people! We get to have our personhood. God does not ask us to give up our personhood, our influence, our personalities, our ideas, feelings, emotions, needs, and desires. In fact, if we were to do that, the whole doormat thing is such a destructive and sinful distortion of femininity. We can both agree on that!

                It is important to choose a potential husband wisely. You want a man who wants to completely submit himself to Christ and who wants to live a life of selfless love and humility. A decent man responds to having a position of God-given authority with humility, service, and love. An arrogant, worldly man responds to having a position of God-given authority by lording it over his wife and by treating her like she is a slave and he is a tyrant. That is a sinful, destructive distortion. I understand why feminists rebelled against that dynamic. It is wrong! But we have gone too far the other way into another sinful distortion today with the woman dominating and the man having no voice – and that is wrong. When sinful people who are not filled with the Spirit of God interact – they sin against each other and make big, painful, nasty messes out of relationships.

                I am sure that many of those who reject Christ and who are very hardcore feminists/lesbians probably did experience some severe trauma, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, spiritual abuse in the past. I have seen that happen many times.😦 It breaks my heart! I don’t want to see anyone mistreated or abused ever!

                Of course you are both to share your opinions and thoughts. Most of the time, you can discuss something together as best friends and come to an agreement or compromise. It is only when there is a decision that can’t be resolved that the wife would graciously share her ideas and then allow her husband to lead – trusting God to lead her through her husband in His sovereignty. And the husband would know that he is accountable to God and to his wife and family for this decision. A decent man will not want to fail his wife. He will want to do what is ultimately best for his wife and family and he will try to make the best decision he can. Sometimes he might mess up. If that happens, he can learn and grow as a leader if his wife continues to support him as a teammate and doesn’t turn on him and berate him for his mistake.

                There is much teamwork. We are one body. Neither can do this alone – we both need each other – and even more than that – we both desperately need the power of God’s Spirit and His wisdom!

                You are welcome to ask whatever questions you have. This is a safe place. I’m always glad to hear from you.:)

                Much love!

                Like

            • Mia
              December 4, 2015 at 2:30 pm #

              So these are things I struggle with (well and questions I have from reading your reply)
              1.I would love to have a family of my own but I would also love to pursue my education and professional goals. Can a Christian married mother be a successful high ranking professional? Is it selfish to want both?
              2.Based on my experiences, I sometimes doubt that it is possible to find a christian who wouldn’t try to stifle me or control me. I fear control. Are there christian men out there who would see a strong successful woman and not try to “cut her down to size?”
              3. Is it possible to still be madly in love after years of marriage with kids?
              4.I do think women should have equal pay rights to men simply because pay rights should be based on merit and not gender. In that vein, so should presidency, political positions,chairmanship and so on. My question is, do you also see that women are sometimes marginalised in the workplace?(sexual harassment, limited job opportunities, etc). From a Christian perspective, how can these be curbed ?
              5.About female pastors, does it mean that females do not receive the calling or anointing from God? I mean, I thought God called whomever he wanted regardless of who they were
              6.What then,should be the dynamic between the man and his wife when it comes to decision making? Is it a mutual consultation or what he says goes from the get go?
              I get you with the abortion thing, but do you support family planning ?

              Like

              • Peacefulwife
                December 4, 2015 at 3:24 pm #

                Mia,

                Thanks for your questions, I will do my best to answer according to my understanding at this time and to point you to Christ.:)

                1. I am a pharmacist part time and a soon-to-be published author. I know of no command in Scripture that prohibits women from being educated or from working outside of the home. However, the real question is not, “What do I want to do with my life, my career, my marriage, and my family?” The real question is, “What does God want to do with every part of my life?” When we belong to Christ, we submit to His Lordship and direction and we seek what we understand will most please Him. Does that make sense? A great book on this topic is Shaunti Feldhahn’s The Life Ready Woman – which will help you prayerfully consider the things God does ask of women who belong to Him and how we can best prioritize the various areas of our lives in ways that please Christ.

                2. In my experience on this blog with over 30,000 comments in the past 4 years – there are some Christian husbands who are controlling. It seems to be a personality thing. But it seems to me that the majority are not controlling, and, if anything, would tend to be more passive. Of course, being too controlling or too passive are two sinful extremes for both men and women. The key is to be Spirit-filled so that we are balanced in the center where God desires us to be – loving, humble, assertive, not aggressive, kind – all of the fruit of the Spirit and I Corinthians 13:4-8 kind of love.

                There are absolutely Christian men who are not controlling. My husband, for example. But to find a man who is truly living for Christ (or a woman) is quite difficult in today’s church. Don’t just believe someone who says, “I’m a Christian.” He needs to live it. I have posts about that on my other site http://www.peacefulsinglegirl.com. You can search “red flags” and “am I ready to be a godly wife?”

                3. It is possible to have something much deeper than infatuation after years of marriage with kids.:) Infatuation is rather short-lived. But then, if we are willing to let it, and we cultivate becoming the people God calls us to be, and we let Him change us – the love becomes much less selfish and surface and much more intense, strong, vibrant, mature, powerful, and beautiful. Our marriage is the best it has ever been these past few years. We have now been married 21 years. I love Greg much more now and more more deeply than I did on our wedding day.

                4. I agree that women should have equal pay rights in the workplace. Of course women are sometimes marginalized in the workplace. Sometimes, so are men. There is bias and there are prejudices against gender, race, age, marital status, and all kinds of things in the world. A woman who lives by the power of God’s Spirit is not at the mercy of the world. God can open doors for her (as He has done for me with publishing my book) that no one else could open or shut. God is the key here. And when people are abiding in Christ – they will want to do what is right and fair. They will want to do that to please God and to bless others. We are not going to be able to change the secular world – but in Christ, we can pray for a massive Great Awakening and God can radically change the hearts of millions of people.

                5. There are a number of reasons why I believe God does not call women to be pastors or to teach men in the church. I was teaching men on my site 3 years ago – until I came across the two passages about this and realized that I was acting against God’s Word. I repented to God and to my readers and took down my posts for men. But in those months where I was teaching men – there were some really sticky situations. Men were coming to me for counsel and prayer. I copied my husband on all emails – but many of these men were starving for respect. I tried to only give a small amount of respect and to keep things very platonic – but it was easy for them to develop feelings for me because they saw respect in me that they weren’t getting at home. And it was easy for me to get emotionally tied up with these hurting men in ways that were not healthy for me. Plus, I have seen churches where there are women pastors – and it just doesn’t make sense that when she is home she submits to her husband but in the church he and the other men submit to her. There are some difficult dynamics that can result spiritually when a woman has authority over a man. There can be sexual tension, romantic feelings, and issues with boundaries.

                Here is a post written by my friend who used to be a female pastor until God convicted her about it. She shares some of the problems that her position caused in this post.

                God calls whomever He desires. But He always does so in accordance with His Word. Note that all 12 disciples were men. Note that all of the early church leaders, pastors, elders, and deacons where men (with possibly one exception that some people think may be a woman’s name – but there is debate about that.)

                Another issue is – with the feminization of the church – men are falling away from the church. They are falling away as leaders in the church and in their homes. That is a big problem.
                The book, Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood has a number of chapters on this topic, as well as a list of ministry opportunities that are available to women – and it is a long one!

                6. Each couple would navigate how to approach decision making on their own. There are variations. My husband and I approach it from a mutual decision making route unless/until we can’t agree. Then I choose to voluntarily go with his wisdom. He knows that I disagree. He knows that I am trusting him and trusting God. He tries VERY hard to make the best decision if this is the situation. It is relatively rare for this to happen for us.

                7. As a pharmacy school student, we learned that birth control pills prevented ovulation. I was good with that. But in recent years, it turns out that even the estrogen combo pills may not always suppress ovulation. Sometimes ovulation can occur – in which case they suppress implantation. That – I am not so excited about. You can search my home page for “birth control” to see my take on this.

                Much love to you!:)

                Like

                • Mia
                  December 6, 2015 at 8:55 am #

                  Thanks so much for answering my questions. I can’t say that I now agree with or understand everything-please remember that I am new to this and have just started to learn and discover so it might take a while-but I can say that I’m not as judgemental and as critical of the subject as I’ve begun to see that I might have misunderstood the entire concept from the very beginning. God bless you for your help.

                  Like

                  • Peacefulwife
                    December 6, 2015 at 2:07 pm #

                    Mia,

                    Take your time. This entire process is much like eating an elephant. It takes a lot of time to really digest things and mull over them. There is wrestling with self and with God that must be done. When we have been marinating in certain ideas for decades – confronting our fixed beliefs is hard. To me, learning to understand what God’s design is for us as women and learning to better understand men and to walk with God was much like learning a new language. It didn’t make sense at all at first.

                    I’m always glad to talk with you any time. You are precious to me.:) Following Christ is a journey. He often reveals things to us in layers. We will all be learning and allowing Him to change us and cause us to grow and mature every day for the rest of our lives on earth.

                    It has been such a joy to get to talk with you. Much love!

                    April

                    Like

                    • Mia
                      December 31, 2015 at 2:06 pm #

                      Hello April!
                      Wanted to talk a little. How are you? I hope you have a wonderful new year. I have actually been reading your blog often, just that I don’t comment. I still want to discuss a few things with you as the other blogs I visit don’t seem to have answers like you do. Is that ok? You are helping me a great deal and until I attacked you, I didn’t realize how much my past had affected my walk with God: I learnt that my whole issues weren’t just with the church’s treatment of women, but with God and equality as well as fairness in general.
                      Based on an article on a Christian website that said that women should be financially dependent on their husbands and not work which based on my other conversations with you, you are aware that I do not agree with this at all. I think it is easy for conservative Christians in America to go all “feminism is evil”, “a woman’s purpose is babies and a husband” because to be perfectly honest, you Americans have it really good. Your laws work, you have freedom and honestly, you are treated equally. Unfortunately, that cannot be said here in Africa (I’m from Ghana precisely). Don’t get me wrong, Africa/Ghana is not as backward and as primitive as some Americans think (yes we drive, no we do not live in trees and we wear normal clothes, not leaves LOL)

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      December 31, 2015 at 2:25 pm #

                      Mia,

                      Of course you may talk with me. I will do my best to explain Scripture and to point you to Christ.:)

                      I think you are aware that I work part time as a pharmacist – my husband’s preference. And I am about to release my first book. I haven’t really made much money from my writing yet – but there is a potential that I could.

                      I don’t believe Scripture is opposed to women working outside of the home or bringing in income. The Proverbs 31 wife made clothing and things to sell and bought and sold fields. Some women in the New Testament had jobs – like Lydia who was “a seller of purple.” For the first 16 years of our marriage, I was the primary bread winner. At this time, I bring in about 40-45% of our family’s income.

                      I have no problem at all with a wife staying home all the time – I would actually love to do that myself.

                      I do like the idea of married couples having their finances combined and thinking of it as “our money” instead of “my money and his/her money.” But there are lots of ways to handle finances and working/income arrangements that honor God.

                      I have seen that the marriage dynamics can be extremely difficult to navigate when the wife is the sole provider and the husband can’t/won’t work. But I think it is still possible to make this work if necessary.

                      We Americans DO have things really good. You’re right. We are treated equally and there is freedom here – at this point. I am thankful that women are treated equally in school and in the work place. I acknowledge that the first wave of feminism did bring about some good and helped to reverse some inequalities and unfair treatment of women.

                      I have heard many horror stories about women in Africa being beaten by their husbands, being mistreated, and not having the opportunities for education and employment that men might have. That breaks my heart.

                      Let’s talk about anything that is on your mind.

                      Much love and happy new year to you!:)

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      December 31, 2015 at 2:35 pm #

                      (contd from previous comment). But over here, the discrimination against women is terrible. I want to give you a few examples: my mother is mentoring a girl who ran away from Senegal. Her husband battered her everyday because she gave birth to a girl and she ran away because his relatives wanted to circumcise her baby girl-you know, female genital mutilation which is quite common in some parts of West Africa in order to keep girls “pure.” It is quite common for a woman and her children to be thrown out on the streets when her husband dies and for his extended family to take all his properties. In some extreme cases, she is forced to undergo widowhood rites(swearing an oath to prove her innocence regarding the death of her husband, drinking the water used to bath the dead body, making love to the corpse and so on).If the woman isn’t financially independent, she has no choice but to endure all of these. If she depended on her husband’s earnings or they had a joint account, she would have no money to pay for legal representation as all his money and properties would be seized by his extended family. A married woman who cannot have children is constantly ridiculed and pressured by her in-laws and in some cases called a witch(sounds ludicrous but it’s true, ask any West African you know LOL). A woman who leaves an abusive marriage is considered a failure. It goes on and on). An incident I have never forgotten; my mother was a housewife and my father, an elder in the church, handled all our finances. Whenever she would ask for money for the upkeep of the house, he would call her names and accuse her of spending the money on sinful things. Meanwhile, he spent all his earnings on gambling and women. And then one day, my mother asked him for money to take my younger sister who has sickle cell anaemia to hospital. April, he beat the living daylights out of her,: kicked her repeatedly in the abdomen, hit her with his belt. Right infront of us. I could tell you many of these horror stories but my point is, if she’d been financially independent, she probably wouldn’t have had to endure all that. It’s gotten way better in the urbanised cities because of all the activism and campaigns but in the remote rural areas, it’s still rampant

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      December 31, 2015 at 5:20 pm #

                      Mia,

                      Goodness! Every time I hear about West Africa and how women are treated, it is something awful! The amount of abuse against women (and children) that I have personally heard about is unfathomable to me.😦 How heartbreaking.

                      The things you are describing blow my mind. I had no idea about the widowhood rights.😦 And that extended families take the money and leave a woman destitute. I can’t comprehend how abuse of women is so acceptable there. The female genital mutilation grieves me, too.

                      In the Old Testament, God severely punished Israel for sins much less severe than these against their widows, orphans, women, and children. I am very concerned for Africa because of the way women are treated (India, too). God does not ignore such sins. He sees oppression and abuse. He punishes the guilty and defends the innocent. Believers in Christ should NEVER be acting in these ways against women.

                      In America, it would be stealing for an extended family to rob a widow of her money in her bank account. They would go to jail. And I can’t imagine anyone asking any woman to endure “widowhood rites” – those things are incredibly abusive.😦

                      I am not sure where the mindsets originate in Africa about women and how to treat them, but these things that you are describing are not of God.

                      Your dad would have gone to jail for what he did to your mom if your family had been here.

                      I encourage ANY woman who is not safe to try to get to safety as soon as possible. I don’t want anyone (husband, wife, or child) to be beaten, abused, or mistreated.

                      The minister at my church who has greatly influenced me and who allowed me to share some of his writings (like Spiritual Authority at the top of my home page) said that if a husband is abusive to his wife, he gives up his position as leader and God-given authority in the home.

                      I Peter 3:7 says that if a husband doesn’t treat his wife with honor, his prayers will not be heard. 1 Timothy 5:8 says if a man will not provide for his family, he is worse than an unbeliever.

                      I Corinthians 13 and Galatians 5 describe how God requires all believers to act and to treat others, including how husbands are to treat their wives:

                      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. I Corinthians 13:4-8

                      You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.

                      So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

                      The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

                      But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5:13-25

                      Here is a post about what place violence should have in a Christian’s home.

                      I hope this might be helpful. I know I primarily talk about how a wife can be a godly wife – but there is another half of the picture – how husbands can be godly husbands. God never gives authority to a believer in Christ for them to abuse others, hurt them physically, destroy them financially, or to use them for selfish purposes. He never gives authority to a believer in Christ for them to “lord it over” others. In God’s economy, those in leadership are to be humble servants – representing the sacrificial, agape love of Christ.

                      Much love to you!

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      December 31, 2015 at 3:07 pm #

                      (contd from “it’s still rampant”) You think middle-eastern women suffer discrimination? You need to visit remote villages in West Africa. Especially in Islamic nations like Mauritania, Gambia and Senegal. Actually when it comes to human rights, I am blessed and pleased to say that Ghana is one of the better off nations in Africa. But back to my point. You witness all these things firsthand and you read all these blogs that preach about how a woman who chooses a career is not fulfilling God’s purpose for her life (which is to be dependent on a man) and you wonder if God is as just and fair as he says he is. If he is, why is it that women still suffer like this? And why does the Bible have such male-dominated teachings? For example, the Bible’s teaching about women not being allowed to teach the Gospel. I’ve always known it was Priscilla who taught Paul the Word when he first became a Christian so why would he say women shouldn’t teach? Some say Paul and Peter were simply creatures of their time-a time where women were illiterate and considered property-so they taught according to their experiences and perceptions. Do you agree? Like my mother for instance. You’d think after the way the church ostracized her for leaving an abusive marriage, she would backslide. Rather she drew closer to God and works today as an evangelist. I do not want to boast but she has brought so many people to Christ. Helped so many people through her evangelism-financially, spiritually, psychology, through counselling and so much more. Does that mean that by virtue of Paul’s teachings, God isn’t pleased with her and all her hard work has been in vain? How is that even fair?
                      Sorry, felt a little despondent and needed to vent.

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      December 31, 2015 at 5:28 pm #

                      Mia,

                      In America, many women attempt to find primary fulfillment and purpose in life through careers – instead of through God. We have also been taught (by feminism) that for a woman to be “just a housewife” or “just a stay at home mom” is oppressive and unfulfilling. Women are taught here that the only way they can and should find real fulfillment and meaning in life is though a career. Of course, that is not true! Real meaning and fulfillment comes from Christ being Lord in our lives – not from being married or from having a career.

                      The blogs you are reading are attempting to steer women away from placing too much emphasis on having a lot of nice things and luxuries or from focusing on career to the detriment of their walk with Christ or their marriages and families. These blogs are also assuming that the wives are being treated well and not being abused – that the husbands are reasonable, decent men.

                      It may be that women from West Africa and other areas where abuse is extremely rampant may need to read different blogs/resources because of the extreme difference in circumstances.

                      Women suffer in Africa (and anywhere in the world) from abuse because the men who abuse them are not submitted to Christ and are filled with self and empowered by the sinful nature, not by God’s Spirit. God will hold these men accountable and either they will pay in hell for all of eternity for their abuse against their wives/children or they will submit fully to Christ and Jesus will pay for their guilt with His blood.

                      Paul does teach in the New Testament that women are not to have authority over men. They are not to be pastors or deacons. But there is nothing that says women can’t teach other women or children or that they can’t evangelize or prophesy. The book Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood has a chapter about all of the ministries women can participate in and all the ways that we can build up and edify the body. There are hundreds of ministry opportunities and witnessing and evangelizing opportunities for women. Men can even learn from women – but the key is that the woman is not in a position of authority over the man.

                      Praise God for your amazing mother! :)

                      Much love to you!

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      January 1, 2016 at 4:21 pm #

                      Thank you very much. I just hoped that by letting you know more about my background, you would understand why I was as opposed to the concept of submission as I was. I know realize that maybe the entire concept was misrepresented to me. The treatment of women in West Africa, it’s getting better. Thanks to education, modernization and exposure. Now more women are getting educated and are standing up for themselves and their fellow women. At least, it’s much better than when I was growing up. For example, in Ghana we now have the Domestic Violence Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) and the inestate law of succession where if a man dies inestate, his wife and children inherit his properties. Also, now women can report domestic abuse cases to the police and be taken seriously, instead of being told to solve their domestic problems at home. But even though more towns are getting urbanized, we still have a lot of remote rural areas where there isn’t a lot of education. And in these areas, these things are the norm. Unfortunately, the rural areas are more than the urban ones. And in these areas, there are more illiterate people than there are literate people. So the men don’t know any better, the women don’t know better. That’s where things like Female Genital Mutilation, Spousal Abuse, Widowhood Rites and so on are rampant. That’s the difference between America and Africa. In America, education is spread. I mean, when you think of big cities in America you think New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, DC. They have great schools and great universities. But in other lesser known cities like Omaha, Salt Lake City, Boise, there are also great universities and schools. I hope you get my point? Education and development are everywhere, not just in the capital cities. Heck, you have education and development even in your rural areas.Whereas in Africa, education-quality education-is often limited to the big/capital cities like Accra, Lagos, Cape Town, Johannesburg and so on. The rural areas (which are more than the big cities) don’t have access to good education or infrastructure (good roads, hospitals and so on). That is the problem. And you know what? I hate to point accusing fingers at any particular religion, but the discrimination is honestly worse in the Islamic countries. We have come very far, but we still have a very long way to go! Please keep us in your prayers.

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 2, 2016 at 7:09 pm #

                      Mia,

                      I’m so thankful that more women are receiving an education and are able to be treated well. I’m extremely glad that women are beginning to have more rights as human beings and that there are beginning to be more consequences for abusers.

                      I have also heard that women are treated poorly in a number of Islamic countries. Breaks my heart.😦

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      January 1, 2016 at 4:59 pm #

                      Oh and I also think stay-at-home moms don’t get the credit they deserve. Taking care of babies, their husbands, cooking, cleaning, IT IS WORK!! Hard work. I don’t believe that a woman should be pressured to work if she doesn’t want to. That’s one of the aspects of feminism I don’t agree with because I get the impression that, or at least the brand of feminism/gender equality I believe in promotes choice for women. So if a woman wants to get married, if a woman wants to have children, if she wants to be a SAHM, if she wants to take back her cheating husband, why should the same people who promote choice for women make her feel guilty for it? As long as she isn’t being abused and is fulfilled, I think she should be left alone. Here in Ghana, you will also find women who work with unemployed husbands and sometimes, these women are downright cruel to their husbands. That is just wrong. You see independent women who despise men. That I don’t approve of. But again, for years these women have witnessed unfathomable abuse and I think a lot of educated independent women here are afraid they will be treated like the way women with less choices have been treated. I think some of the independent and educated women see the many women who suffer in rural areas (sometimes their own mothers) and go “that will never be me.” So I think for such women, hating men and being cruel to/suspicious of men is their defense mechanism. Because they are afraid that what is happening to several women will happen to them.

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 2, 2016 at 7:13 pm #

                      Mia,

                      Yes, being a housewife/stay-at-home-mom is a lot of work! It is a labor of love without a financial paycheck, but there are often many eternal rewards.:)

                      I, too, would like women to be able to freely choose to marry, to have children, to work or not, to stay with her husband or not (particularly if there is infidelity or abuse going on). etc… I don’t want women to be forced into being home or to be forced into working. I would love for each woman to get to listen to God’s prompting for her and to make her own decision, along with her husband, about what is best at that time for her and for the family.

                      Abuse is wrong either way. Husbands should not be abused. Wives should not be abused. God does not tolerate sin against anyone.

                      I can certainly understand that women who were abused by men would be afraid and would raise their daughters to be independent – fiercely independent. But that can easily swing the pendulum too far the other way and then we end up with women mistreating men – which we have so much of in the US.

                      How I long for all people to know Christ and to be filled with His Spirit and to treat each other well, with dignity, respect, honor, and love.

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      January 1, 2016 at 5:13 pm #

                      Sorry, I re-read my previous comment and I realized that it sounded as if I was saying that New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington DC were more important/developed than Omaha, Salt Lake City and Boise. That’s not what I meant at all. I know they are also big cities. The point I was trying to make was that usually when you hear about big cities in America, you hear about LA and Chicago but there are big and developed cities all over America, not just the ones you hear of everyday because urbanization is widespread. Whereas in most African countries, you hear them talk about only the big commercial/capital cities and truly, those are often the only ones that have education and urbanization. Which is why rural-urban migration is so popular over here.
                      LOL! I hope I’m making sense

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 2, 2016 at 7:13 pm #

                      Mia,

                      You are totally making sense to me.:)

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      January 1, 2016 at 5:39 pm #

                      (I promise this is my last comment)
                      I really hope you don’t think of Africans as babarians or evil. I know we have a long way to go but sometimes the way we are portrayed in Western Media and the impressions Americans have of us are a little extreme to say the least. For example, I visited North Carolina last year and I got questions like “do you people still eat babies” and “do you have fridges” (I promise I’m not making this up.) I brought these things up because I felt that Christians in America who are so against gender equality take certain things for granted i.e assuming that all Christian men follow the godly design of what Christian men are supposed to be like. I felt like they needed to know more about what goes on in some of these third world countries because America shields them. IGNORANCE is the biggest problem in Africa. Ignorance and lack of equal access to education. We continue to pray and we are gradually getting better but there’s still a lot of work to be done

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 1, 2016 at 10:05 pm #

                      Mia,

                      You can feel free to comment all you want to.:) You are welcome here. These are VERY important concerns and issues you are bringing up. I’m so glad you are sharing your heart and sharing about what is happening with so many women in rural places in Africa.

                      I hope to get to respond in the morning. But wanted to thank you for sharing and let you know that I am glad we are having this conversation.

                      Much love to you!

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 2, 2016 at 7:17 pm #

                      Mia,

                      I’m very sorry about the ways Africans have been misrepresented. It can be difficult for people in different cultures to know what is happening exactly in other parts of the world.

                      I don’t think that Christians in America are “against gender equality.” I think you’ll find that most Christians who support complementarianism – biblical roles in marriage – support the idea of women and men being of equal value, worth, and dignity as humans in the sight of God and of people. And I think they support equal pay for equal work in the workplace. What those who support complementariansim are generally against is the idea that men and women have the exact same roles in marriage because Scripture gives husbands and wives unique roles to demonstrate the relationship between Christ and the church.

                      I pray with you for much healing and for life-saving, godly, healing information to come to those in rural Africa who don’t know God’s ways of treating others with love, kindness, dignity, compassion, value, respect, and honor.

                      Much love to you!

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      January 8, 2016 at 7:18 pm #

                      Hi April!
                      Hope you and your family are doing good. I am also doing good. I just needed your opinion on something. My very good friend -one of my best friends since childhood actually- and her husband have been married for a little over a year now and they have a six month old daughter. Now she’s a part time teacher and he’s a full time public school teacher so they don’t make a whole lot of money. She just found out that she’s 5 weeks pregnant. With her first pregnancy, she had a pretty bad time and ended up having an emergency c-section, her kid was in NICU for about a month and they racked up a lot of bills. Long story short, she is set on having an abortion. She isn’t even planning to tell her husband! When I told her it was wrong, she exploded! Said I was being judgemental and that I don’t get it. I tried to get her to confide in my mom because I think she needs counseling but she doesn’t want anyone around us to know. What exactly do I say to her? How do I talk her out of this? Cos she’s very active in church-a lot more active than I am- and she cries all the time about how much God must hate her and how she doesn’t know how she’ll cope and I never feel like I am saying the right thing because it always comes out wrong.

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 8, 2016 at 7:44 pm #

                      Mia,

                      Oh no!!!😦

                      I am so glad you encouraged her to tell someone. Her husband needs to know. You can’t necessarily stop her – but I am so glad you are trying to stop her from killing her baby. I understand why she is scared. but how I pray she will decide to keep this baby – as a precious gift from God.

                      I don’t know that you are saying or doing anything wrong. What she wants to do is wrong – and she may be hormonal and stressed and filled with fear on top of all of it. IS it possible for you to go with her to talk with a counselor or with her husband? Or will she not talk with you anymore?

                      Praying for God to reach her and to heal her soul and heart – and to help her see that this is a sacred, precious life.

                      Praying for God’s wisdom for you, as well.

                      Like

                  • Mia
                    January 4, 2016 at 8:38 am #

                    Thank you for reading everything I wrote. I’m happy you understand me, and also happy that through you, I’ve understood God’s roles for us better. I hope you’re able to reach more confused young women in Africa like me, infact not just in Africa but all around the world. I’ll be visiting your blog often because I’m learning quite a lot.

                    Like

                    • Mia
                      January 9, 2016 at 4:52 am #

                      Thank you. I’ve been wanting to tell her husband for sometime now so he could stop her. Sure, she’ll get angry with me but honestly, isn’t that a small price to pay if it means saving an innocent child? Maybe I’m not as modern as I thought I was because up until now, I was totally-or at least I thought I was-pro choice. But now that it’s happening so close to home, I guess that’s not the case. She’s not just worried about expenses, but also worried about what people in church and in their social circles are going to say. Especially since these people saw what they went through with the first one and know that they struggle financially. Ugh! I feel so helpless

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 9, 2016 at 10:38 pm #

                      Mia,

                      The opinions of people are not worth her baby’s life.😦 And it is not worth having to stand before God guilty of her baby’s death. She may experience condemnation from them for having another baby. That would be painful. But how I pray God opens her eyes to His truth and to the value her baby’s life has!

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      January 10, 2016 at 3:37 pm #

                      It is just sad. Please pray for her. I will too. I feel responsible for her. I hope you understandIts just

                      Like

                    • Peacefulwife
                      January 10, 2016 at 8:47 pm #

                      Mia,

                      It is VERY sad. I have had women write to me who wanted to get abortions. I tried so hard to convince them to keep their precious babies. I know that one woman refused to listen to me. I never heard from her again. Completely breaks my heart.

                      Like

                    • Mia
                      January 10, 2016 at 3:42 pm #

                      *hope you understand*

                      Like

  14. alynnie0617
    April 5, 2016 at 8:28 pm #

    What I have just read has changed my heart. Changed my attitude, my perspective.

    I have been married to the most wonderful man in the world for 2 years, we were both married previously and have grown up children. Oh, how difficult these last 2 years have been…I didn’t know how controlling I was being, how my cold, standoffish behavior and treatment toward this wonderful man was emasculating him and making him lose all desire for me sexually. This whole vicious cycle made us close ourselves off to each other, and close our hearts. I know now, finally, what I need to do. I know what my role is. I know what my dear husband needs from me. RESPECT and admiration.

    I need to let him take his proper place as the head of our household, and I need to step down from my high horse and submit to him. I need to let him know how strong and capable he is, and how much I appreciate him doing such a good job and working so hard to provide for me and protect me. For 2 years I’ve been praying, until I didn’t even know what I was praying for anymore, crying myself to sleep every night because I didn’t understand why he didn’t want me, why he wouldn’t respond to my advances.

    Now I know what I must do. Thank you for showing me what God has to say about the role of the husband and wife in marriage, and how it all works so marvelously in His design! And how, when we follow His word, and live according to how He calls us to live, the gift of sexual as well as emotional intimacy becomes ours for the taking…through GIVING to one another!

    My husband is away for 3 days for work and I can’t wait for him to return so I can show him that I am ready and willing now to be the wife he has always wanted: respectful, ladylike, adoring and submissive. I can hardly wait to see him rediscover his masculinity in the light of my loving gaze, and become the warm, sexy, loving husband I always knew he could be, and CONFIDENT.

    Like

  15. Ade
    April 19, 2016 at 7:15 am #

    Hi, I am a 33 year old husband and have been married for just over a year to a wife who I adore and who I long to build a Godly marriage with.
    Almost immediately after we got married my wife announced that she was not and had never been sexually attracted to me. This has caused considerable issues in my confidence and has caused a need for her to want “out” of the marriage. She states that although on an emotional and spiritual level, there are no problems, that a sexual attraction is something she requires for a fulfilling marriage. I cannot find anything biblical to support this very worldly view, although I am regularly quoted songs of Solomon (which although in the bible, are not Jesus’ and Gods instructions for marriage).
    There is nothing wrong with me and we kept ourselves pure before marriage. It is impossible for me to reach her expectation of attraction and because of this, she has not invested anything into the marriage and simply states that she has made a mistake.
    She suffered with eating disorders when she was in her teens and is hugely judgemental when it comes to looks.
    She is obsessed with compatibility and type (both of which I fail in) and when I asked her why she married me she replied “I thought it would make things better”.
    I’ve told her that she should not be obsessed with outward appearance as it will change. Her issue is that she says she should have had sexual feelings towards me from the start, which she has never had, and that she understands that if she had, these will fade over time.
    Our church have never encountered anything like this and do not know where to start.
    Is this something that is common, or has even happened before? Can anyone explain or rationalise it for me and please give me some advice?
    I am trying to be supportive and biblical and know that divorce is not Gods way, but I feel that I am forcing her to stay in an unhappy marriage.
    I want us to be happy and for us to grow in Christ as I see every other couple doing, but with the dependence on feelings of sexual attraction, I cannot see anything getting better.
    Thank you for your time.

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      April 19, 2016 at 8:32 am #

      Ade,

      This really breaks my heart.😦 I have seen a number of similar cases – and for this reason, on my post for single women on my other blog about “red flags,” I talk about that if a potential spouse seems to have zero sexual temptation before marriage, that can be an issue that needs to be looked into. I have heard of men who told their fiances before marriage, “God has taken away all of my sexual desire. I could sleep in the same bed with you and not be tempted.” And then they marry and it turns out, there are huge issues and the man has no sexual desire at all – not even after marriage.

      Obviously, that is not a recipe for a healthy marriage.

      Sexual attraction can be developed and deepened, in my view. I wonder if the eating disorders may play a role? Is she super visual? Did y’all have any godly counseling before marriage? Did you talk about this issue at all before marriage? Why did she think getting married to you would make things better? Did she idolize you in some way, or try to have you meet needs in her heart that only Christ can really meet?

      Thankfully, Scripture doesn’t focus at all on “compatibility” or “type” and our God is an Expert at healing broken people and broken relationships.

      Does she want to leave?

      Is there any physical intimacy at all?

      Is she aware of the fact that she is wronging you? What does she say about that?

      How have you attempted to approach her?

      What are the general dynamics, is one of you more passive and one more dominant?

      Praying for healing for you both, my dear brother! I have some resources that may be helpful if you are interested. Is she willing to read about this issue? Does she have a godly counselor about the eating disorder stuff, or is that no longer an issue? Would she be willing to talk with me, do you think?

      Please know – “every other couple” is not happy and is not growing in Christ. Read a few comments on several posts here and you will find that there are plenty of problems in plenty of marriages. Many marriages are in great pain today. BUT – Christ can heal us if we will turn to Him!

      In Him,
      April

      Like

  16. Ade
    April 19, 2016 at 10:39 am #

    Thank you for your reply. I need to sit down and answer all of your questions and maybe give a little more background. I will do that later, however if you have some helpful resources, that would be gratefully received

    Ade

    Like

    • Peacefulwife
      April 19, 2016 at 5:05 pm #

      Ade,

      I have a LOT of resources – and am not totally sure what direction you and your wife may need yet. But I will be glad to share some posts that may be helpful after I find out a little bit more about what is going on.:)

      Like

      • Ade
        April 20, 2016 at 3:38 am #

        Hi, at this moment we are all but separated. I am in my brothers spare room, desperately trying to get back home so I can put all I’m learning about Godly marriage into practice.
        My wife is doing everything she can to put that off. Saying that she needs the space and time for her to decide what she wants and to get her head sorted, work stuff sorted, etc… Anything to put off me going back home. Everything is on her terms and has been for 16 months. As I said earlier, I have tried to be patient and supportive. On a number of occasions, previously,I have had to leave for a few days because the abuse is too much, for example, she would say “I feel that God has made me settle for second best” and when pushed into saying what is actually wrong with me I was told “it’s your face, I just don’t find you attractive”. These are very personal attacks that I know are not from the mouth of God.
        A little background. I was aware of this issue prior to our marriage, however after talking about it, it was put down to pre wedding nerves. She had a responsibility to address this properly, before the wedding.
        It then came out, in a big way, 6 weeks after the wedding. It appeared to manifest itself specifically on me wearing glasses. It got so bad, that my wife would say that she was scared to come home from work and walk through the door when she got home, felt Ill and wanted to run away. I couldn’t believe that me wearing glasses could do this. It was so shallow. I tried contact lenses, tried not wearing them around her (which was not practical), her father has even told me that she was going to get in the car and abandon me, hundreds of miles from home, when we were on holiday.
        I have had to endure a lot, and I know that I have done nothing wrong. But it quickly wears down the confidence. I was daily trying to make sure that I was wearing the right clothes, desperately hoping to be more attractive to her. My friends and family have a very clear word for what she was doing, “abuse”.
        Eventually, my wife offered to pay for laser eye surgery. I agreed on the condition that she went and had counselling for the underlying issue, of which she didn’t know.
        She agreed and after the surgery, things appeared to be ok for a couple of months. I would regularly ask if things were better and she would say they were. In December last year it all exploded again. It was two months of pure hell, judgement on appearance, verbal attacks on our marriage and my appearance. It nearly got too much.
        Again this got to a point where the issue seemed to fade and was more manageable. After about a month, it started again. I walked in from work, having earlier in the day clean shaven. My wife is in bed and when I walk into the bedroom, she looks at me in that way I have seen too many times, I can only describe it as pure hatred. My heart sank as I knew what was coming and this is where we are at now.
        My wife acknowledges that there is a problem, I think that deep down she knows that there is something not right with her. However, she relies on feelings to dictate her choices and therefore, if she does not feel love or passion towards me, then it must mean that the marriage isn’t right. She has all but admitted to me that she has not felt like investing anything into the marriage from the start, because she did not have these “feelings”. I’ve tried explaining that love is a choice, a daily choice we make with the other person’s best interests at heart, but she just insists that it has to be about feelings and it is all about her.
        Interestingly, I have gone and sought Christian council and searched Gods word to explore what marriage is, my wife has distanced herself from the body of Christ and says that she is searching the bible to find a biblical reason to end the marriage. She will even twist particular words to make it validate the way she thinks. Her approach is purely destructive, not constructive.
        My non Christian friends cannot understand why I am still around, but I understand the covenant promise that I made, and although I am not perfect, and I do things that don’t always bring honour to God in the marriage, I stand by my promise.
        My wife is obsessed with the visual. For her it is as black and white as, you are either good looking enough or not. She has described this “type” to me. She insists that her “type” is dark hair and tanned skin. I am neither of these things and this is an issue for her. She has this fantasy idea of marriage to the perfect looking person that gives her positive emotional and sexual feelings, and she resents me because I do not fulfil these needs. It is a very self centred approach that I believe is not a godly way of living marriage.
        I have asked her whether the perfect looking guy or someone who treats her right is more important and her answer is “you do treat me right, but I need an equal amount of both”. I am sick of hearing “we are not meant to be together” and then blaming God for making such a huge mistake!
        It has brought about the obvious question from everybody “why did she date you, why did she get engaged to you and why did she marry you?”. Her response is simply that she thought it would make things better and make her feel differently. She has even gone so far as to say that I made her marry me!! Again, for her, it’s not about a daily choice to DO love, it’s a requirement to have the feelings which will then make it worth loving me.
        I am in so much pain over this because I know how awesome our marriage could be and how mighty in can be for the glory of Christ.
        She is desperately trying to find validation for the way she thinks. She knows that she will not find that from the church, only truth and Gods word, which is truth. Because of this, she does not want to engage with the church. She is happy to have councilling, bit worldly, non Christian councilling because she believes that they will validate her thought process, and therefore give her a way out.
        I am not a bad guy to have around, I’m caring, considerate and loving. I mess up like most people, but not in any way that justifies what she is doing.
        One of the hard things is that she is getting on with her life, quite happily at the moment and I’m the one struggling to keep going, desperately clinging onto Gods word. I have already said that divorce is not an option, but I need a miraculous move of the Holy spirit in my wife’s heart and mind.
        I think I have covered most of the questions you asked.
        I appreciate your prayers and advice.

        Ade

        Like

        • Peacefulwife
          April 21, 2016 at 8:01 am #

          Ade,

          Goodness. This is really heartbreaking.😦

          What did her counselor say when she went to counseling? What you are describing – I can’t help but wonder if there is some kind of mental illness or spiritual oppression going on? Other than the anorexia, was there any trauma or abuse when she was younger? What was her parents’ marriage like? What was her relationship like with her dad?

          What was the relationship like before you got married?

          I can’t believe you actually had LASIK surgery because she was so upset you wear glasses. (I have had LASIK myself – but it was my own decision. No one was ever repulsed by me wearing glasses – other than some bullies in 5th grade when I first started wearing them.) Obviously, you wore glasses before. I don’t think this whole thing really has anything to do with your appearance, most likely, but with wrong thinking in her mind – from what you are describing. Of course, I haven’t spoken with her to hear her side of things. But it is unreasonable to marry a man who looks a certain way and then to insist that he is not good enough right after marrying him – for the reasons you are sharing.

          I have a number of posts about feelings not being the most important thing, and about addressing many of these ideas that she has shared. Is she willing to hear anything from you at this point? Do you believe she would be willing to speak with me?

          The posts I have that address these issues can be found if you search my home page search bar for:

          – husbands share what is disrespectful to them
          – what is respect in marriage
          – do I base my marriage on feelings
          – I am responsible for myself spiritually
          – I am responsible for my emotions
          – idol of happiness
          – the Bible and divorce
          – bitterness
          – fear
          – control
          – idol husband
          – idolatry
          – the fantasy of romance
          – breaking the romance addiction
          – insecurity
          – discontentment
          – security
          – contentment

          Also, my video on Youtube (channel is “April Cassidy”) about Taking Our Thoughts Captive may be very helpful.

          I pray for God’s wisdom and Spirit to give you the direction, love, and power you need to be the man and husband God calls you to be. I pray for spiritual and emotional healing for your wife and for your marriage. The enemy is at work here and he wants her to believe these destructive ideas. Christ can open her eyes and set her free.:)

          Like

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