I have a hard time respecting my husabnd


#1

I do love my husband sometimes and I melt inside when I think of what and how he is putting up with me. But often I find myself not respecting him, critisizing him etc. I really do think I have valid points, but I also think that all husbands, even the ones whose wives love them to bits have horrid imperfections and have done bad things to hurt their wives or themselves.

I would like to know know about women who had a hard time respecting their husbands and then through prayer managed to became better at it. (yes I know about ST. Monica and her advice for women to hold their silly tongues)

I am working on this as my primary spiritual goal to at least not give my opinion out loud (and act like I respect him) and to hopefully learn to trully respect him.

When I search my heart I think the main reason why I don’t respect him is that he has earned far less than his potential over the 6 years of our marriage, and though we have had what we needed their were times we didn’t have much. We are still officially a “low income family” but really we do have what we need. ALso I have had to scramble and call friends for a lone about three or four times in the first two three years. I think he doesn’t optimize his use of time and (he isn’t exactly lazy) and could do much better. I am used to my father as a male role model who is constantly focused and driven. My husband is not that way at all.

Also he has a temper that will flair up the odd time and it is horrid. He usually yells, sometimes breaks things or recently has punched me in the arm. He has actually touched me about four times in anger and threatened to hit me at other times.

I told him that violence is a problem that he has to deal with just as I see a spiriual director to help me be a better wife and he has agreed to see our priest.


#2

familyministries.org/marriage_ministry.htm

Check out this website for resources to bolster your marriage skills regarding respect.

There is another great website to explore as well. It is the Marriage Partnership Magazine website with great articles. christianitytoday.com/marriage/

With all things begin everything, with a prayer.


#3

Being hit once and threatened other times is not an imperfection that you should look past! I would look into a good Catholic couples counselor to start with. Your priest should know where to refer you.


#4

[quote=lukefan]Being hit once and threatened other times is not an imperfection that you should look past!
[/quote]

I know that it is not an imperfection to look past. I have spoken to him about this and said that it was dangerous and he needed to take steps to help himself. He has agreed to make an appointment with our priest. I will also speak to our priest to make sure that he sees both sides just in case my husband presents an overly distorted perspective.

My husband seems to be sorry for his act yet he does say that I made him do it. He gets angry when I point out that his actions are his choice not mine. I think he does know that, but he doesn’t admit it outloud. But he is ashamed I know it.

I feel I should not ignore the problem, but also try not to provoke him. My provoking him is going against my own resolutions anyways.

But I am afraid of what of he does more serious damage. Will I have to send him away? Denounce him to the police? How will we survive? What about the sadness this would cause the kids. The best seems to be is to pray and hope that he will seek help and that I can also be less antagonostic and attacking.


#5

Love and Respect Website

Love and Respect Book


#6

What did you cherish in each other that brought you together in the first place? Find that, start there, and enlarge on those things you cherished.

CDL


#7

I have a hard time respecting my H too, sometimes more than others. When I hear from folks that the main 3 things to look for in a husband are 1) a financial provider; 2) spiritual leader; and 3) forgot…I realize my H is none of those. I was young and stupid when I chose my H, I know he was not God’s plan for me, but we married, and choose to stick to our vows all the same.

It is very hard because of this, He is lazy, a lousy roller coaster provider, spiritual leader: nil, has no guts or strength of character, and is basically a couch potato, football addict. BUT, what must a wife do then? YES, stick with it all the same, BE loving, BE supportive, BE a spiritual leader in my home, and put up with it. This is my cross to bear. I made my bed, now I must lay in it, and lay in it with grace. Too many years have passed (16) and 3 kids later, it is too far to call it quits. Plus God knows our trials and yours too, and will sustain us nonetheless I really believe.

This is what YOU reading this must do as well. Divorce is just not an option for a true believer. Maybe it is for a false Christian, one not a true believer, who puts, “me, me, me” first. But we must not be this way. We must strive to be an example for others to follow.

God Bless ALL reading this.


#8

This may not be what you want to hear, and you will probably disagree with me, but you need to STAND UP FOR YOURSELF! Not in a disrespectful way, but that’s what this is going to take. It sounds to me, and I don’t know you very well, that you are kind of a push over and then when you are critical you let him make you feel bad for it.

Look, my husband makes all the decisions for our family, but I make sure that he is making an INFORMED decision, and by informed I mean I inform him of my opinion on the subject. I respect him when he disagrees with me, but I make sure that I am heard. Often times I am able to see things in a big-picture type way when he only sees immediate consequences. He usually agrees with me.

Maybe you are too demanding and he feels like he can’t live up. You sound like you have a close relationship with your dad, and daddy’s girls can be difficult to impress, just like mamma’s boys, believe me. The biggest piece of advice I can give is, no matter what, and we all fail at this as wives, DO NOT NAG! Say it once, say it with force and meaning, but don’t whine it over and over again for three days until all he can do is imagine himself punching you just to shut you up. Say it once and mean it! Let him know there will be consequences. Men only understand consequences, and they can’t stand nagging.

It sounds like your husband might not respect you. And it’s difficult to respect somebody who doesn’t respect you in return. You need to stand up to him. When my husband yells at me for no reason, I look right at him and say, “I don’t know who the hell you think you are, but you will NOT speak to me that way and if you continue to do so I WILL make you, very, very sorry.” And I mean it. I’m not playing and he knows it. You need to be a strong woman to support your strong man.


#9

marcsababa:

I think you are married to an abuser and things won’t change without a significant commitment to counseling, bother marital and individual.Most likely, life’s ups and downs will cause him to react more poorly to stress as the years go by. Do not try to play down the hitting/grabbing/pushing whatever. By attacking you, your husband is committing a gravely wrong act, and that’s why it’s illegal and immoral. And your precious children are a party to this as well. That in itself is sad enough.

I don’t know a whole lot about your situation, but given that most men are designed by God to work hard to support their wife and family; and that most people want to take pride in their work and grow in their jobs or careers, I would ask you if your husband might be:

  1. Depressed or
  2. Have an undiagnosed learning/processing disorder that impacts his ability to work successfully or
  3. Have a problem related to unresolved family problems or
  4. Be struggling with an addiction of some sort.

How did he do in school? When is the last time he has seen a doctor? If your priest is not trained in marriage counseling, then look for another counselor. Remember, you need an official treatment plan that will function as a road map, so to speak, of how you and your husband will approach various problems in your lives, and how long it should take to improve that issue and move forward to the next item. If you go to counseling, you too, must be completely honest about your sexual relationship, money, communication, etc.

I think your primary goal, that is remaining uncritical of your husbands words and actions, is an excellent way to begin the new year. If nothing else, you can observe how he behaves and feels under these conditions. If nothing changes over the next few weeks, then the problem has absolutely nothing to do with you. And it probably doesn’t anyway, but this is a good starting point so that you can see the influence of your reactions on him. In your mind, say something like “I’ll do this until Valentine’s Day (or Easter, just set a date), and by then I expect to see some improvement.” Keep a journal. Not to use against him, but to help you sort out what is happening. Respect must be genuine or it will not stand the demands of married life. I know that God will bless you for that and that your husband will notice the change. But this is but one baby step on a long road. I really hope you can find a counselor who can help you, so that this problem is behind you. God can heal any marriage, but it takes a lot of energy and time and even money to pay for the counseling. Pray, God will show you how to make all of this happen according to His will. I would also encourage you to pray with your children every night, like a decade of the Rosary or a passage from the Bible. They need a great deal of love and affection at this point as well. As does your husband. God bless you, it’s not easy to be a Catholic wife.


#10

The Crazy Cycle:

http://www.loveandrespect.com/images/crazycycle.gif


Love and Respect


#11

Thank you for your input everyone.

A few clarifications in case anybody else feels they have some input.

When I follow my program of life and do my morning prayers and thereby do not nag then my husband is fine. He actually puts up with nagging and worrying for a while, but then will explode.

My main concern I guess is what one responder mentioned: that abuse escalates without intervention. I don’t understand how that works. Is it automatic? I know my husband doesn’t want to do it. He just gets really mad, and wants to shut me up. But I really don’t like the fact that he has always said that “I made him do it” He might acknowledge in private that he is responsible for his actions, but he hasn’t said it to me. I need to hear that from him to feel safe.

I will wait to see this week if he does indeed make an appointment with our priest. Whether or not he does I will of course see the priest as well with or without my husband. Our priest is FSSP and very wise. If he can’t handle the counceling I am sure he will say so.


#12

[quote=marcsababa]He actually puts up with nagging and worrying for a while, but then will explode.
[/quote]

Its normal for husbands–and wives–to reach a limit with nagging. It is surprising to me that, though this is easy to understand, many people still do it.

“Of all the evil, infernal devices created by all the devils in hell for destroying love, nagging is the deadliest.” – Dale Carnegie


#13

Maybe you should really, seriously stop tearing your husband down.

You’ve indicated that you nag him.

You’ve said that “he doesn’t earn anywhere near his potential.” You nag him about this? You tell him he’s a failure?

Spouses are supposed to support one another, to help one another. Spouses who tear each other down end up alone, and unhappy. And generally, that’s what they deserve.

No…He should not have hit you. But as you note, he’s fine except when you provoke him.

So…stop provoking him. Help him, for the love of God. That’s your duty.


#14

There’s no excuse for a man hitting a woman. I’m telling you what, I love my husband, and he loves me, and we get along great most of the time, but he knows that if he actually hit me, it would be on. He knows that I am not afraid to stand up for myself. My husband is Italian - he’s macho! He thinks he is the man and that’s that. But he is afraid of this spunky Irish broad, and please believe it! There is a line. Assault and infidelity are that line, and I will make him pay if he wants to cross it. You need to draw yourself a line, honey, and make him stay on the right side of it. And then you’ll get along just peachy.


#15

[quote=tiny’smommy]There’s no excuse for a man hitting a woman. I’m telling you what, I love my husband, and he loves me, and we get along great most of the time, but he knows that if he actually hit me, it would be on. He knows that I am not afraid to stand up for myself. My husband is Italian - he’s macho! He thinks he is the man and that’s that. But he is afraid of this spunky Irish broad, and please believe it! There is a line. Assault and infidelity are that line, and I will make him pay if he wants to cross it. You need to draw yourself a line, honey, and make him stay on the right side of it. And then you’ll get along just peachy.
[/quote]

It’s fairly obvious that they’re not getting along “just peachy.”

You are correct that there’s no justification for a man hitting a woman (nor, for that matter, for a woman hitting a man in anger…). But “laying down the law” to the husband in this case isn’t going to solve the problem; by all that the OP shared with us, it’s pretty evident that the source of the marital disharmony is the OP’s disrespect for her husband, which she, by her own admission, has been very willing to share with her husband.

While it’s important to note that physical abuse is unacceptable, it’s also important not to ignore the other aspects of this situation, because the guy hit her (once, according to her). That is once too many, for sure – but it really doesn’t sound like that is the source of the problems here…We must not let our revulsion with his hitting her blind us to the rest of the situation.


#16

Oh, yeah, and how could I forget this? Compliment him CONSTANTLY. Always be looking for things to compliment him on. Sometimes I just look at my husband when I’m so irritated with his annoying little habits and I say, “You are soooo handsome.” And I mean it. He is handsome, but that isn’t what I was really thinking about. Or give him a hug and say, “I love the way you hold me.” Most wives love the way their husbands hold them. If he takes the garbage out, even though it is his only household chore, I always say, “Thank you, honey, for taking out the garbage.” Even when we go to McDonalds and he pays I thank him for the meal. It sounds silly, but it really works. When you ask him to do something, and he actually does it, even though it was 2 days later, say, “Oh, honey, thank you so much for picking your socks up off the bathroom floor. I really appreciate it.” If he knows that he is going to be praised for the slightest little thing he does for you, he will do more. Not a lot more, but a little. And eventually you will both become genuinely nicer people.


#17

It’s not about “laying down the law.” It’s about not being a wimp! How can anybody respect somebody who will put up with that kind of stuff? Nobody can. She needs to respect herself and let him know that if he does that again there will be consequences! She is not his child; she is his wife. He does not get to treat her any way he pleases. She is still a human being, and there are consequences for behavior, even husbands toward their wives!


#18

Thank you for everyone who responded.

I know it is difficult to see the situation in its fullness from a brief paragraph so people were giving advice based on their own extrapolations of the info I gave.

Perhaps not surprisingly the most helpful were the people who gave me the truth and it did hurt, but thank you I know the Holy Spirit was at work here.

I have spoken to my husband about all of this and he and I are together in wanting to work things out.

He understands my fear of losing him if things got into a bad pattern and I would have to separate from him to keep me from a hospital and him from jail.

I especially thank the poster who pointed out that my worrying about him not acheiving his full income potential is rude and just like him berating me (he does not do this) for not being a perfect housewife or have a perfect figure.

There were many other points I will probably print out and review with my program of life daily.

I thank you men for speaking out for one of you. I want to change and treat him better. I will do it with the help of God.


#19

OP: IF your husband has ever hit you, this is a wake up call friend. This changes the situation drastically. My H has thrown a cup of coffee at the wall, and his dinner plate filled with food a couple times in his anger, but he never has hit me, and I know never would. IF your H has hit you in anger, it is time to re-evaluate. IF he is a physical abuser, you must get help. This situation is different than a marriage filled with the usual problems, like mine. Ups and downs, financial pressures, kid pressures, in-laws, etc…Abuse is different.

If he physically abuses you, get him out of the home asap. Tell him until he is willing to change, he cannot come back. You want to see his 3 months of counseling receipts. I do feel sometimes men might have anger problems, it isn’t intentional towards their wife or kids, they need help desperately with unresolved issues. They love you and their families, but their problems are standing in the way. They must seek treatment, or they will lose their family.
Don’t give up friend regardless. God can work miracles. He has in my marriage.


#20

I fully agree with those who have said that physical abuse is not acceptable. And yes, it does escalate as time goes by unless the abuser gets help and does what he has to do to change.

It sounds like he has some deep-seated issue(s) that have little to do with how you talk to him. He probably sees everything said to him as confirmation that he is a loser or stupid or whatever it is that is making him miserable, because, believe me deep inside he is miserable and needs real help.

As for worrying about how it might affect your kids, you are behind the curve. It has already affected your kids. They have eyes and ears and can see for themselves that something is very wrong between their parents and with their dad. You ALL need counseling, not just you and your husband.

Get help and get it now, for all of you. You have my prayers.


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