Women were canonized for fleeing rapists, yet women should submit to husbands who act in same manner?


#1

Something I find puzzling, so help me here:

There have been many people on this forum who promote huge sacrifice/prayer on the part of wives in order to convert their husband, even in the face of total neglect, even near abuse, intimidation, etc., and that we should no matter what, essentially, never speak of divorce. YET, the Catholic church canonized young women who fled men intent on raping them. So when it comes to a husband doing the same to a wife (mean husband taking what they want, not loving as they should, so that wife lives in fear) it's necessary to submit to this so that somehow her husband will be converted. :shrug: To me the husband seems intent on the same thing a rapist is..Am I misunderstanding something?


#2

[quote="gretahope, post:1, topic:207923"]
Something I find puzzling, so help me here:

There have been many people on this forum who promote huge sacrifice/prayer on the part of wives in order to convert their husband, even in the face of total neglect, even near abuse, intimidation, etc., and that we should no matter what, essentially, never speak of divorce. YET, the Catholic church canonized young women who fled men intent on raping them. So when it comes to a husband doing the same to a wife (mean husband taking what they want, not loving as they should, so that wife lives in fear) it's necessary to submit to this so that somehow her husband will be converted. :shrug: To me the husband seems intent on the same thing a rapist is..Am I misunderstanding something?

[/quote]

\

You are asking a loaded question here.

A husband does have the right to expect to have sexual relations with his wife. And it would be reasonable for a husband who was constantly be denied those rights to be irritated and angry.

But a husband does not have the right to violently abuse his wife, sexually or otherwise. Once physical violence and intimidation enter the picture then we are no longer talking about marital rights.


#3

[quote="gretahope, post:1, topic:207923"]
Something I find puzzling, so help me here:

There have been many people on this forum who promote huge sacrifice/prayer on the part of wives in order to convert their husband, even in the face of total neglect, even near abuse, intimidation, etc., and that we should no matter what, essentially, never speak of divorce. YET, the Catholic church canonized young women who fled men intent on raping them. So when it comes to a husband doing the same to a wife (mean husband taking what they want, not loving as they should, so that wife lives in fear) it's necessary to submit to this so that somehow her husband will be converted. :shrug: To me the husband seems intent on the same thing a rapist is..Am I misunderstanding something?

[/quote]

the church does tell abused people to sit and take it. She stands by the person and even helps leave the situation. When my mom found herself in this situation, it was actually the church that helped her out of it, finically and spritually. She was told she could get an annualment, my declined the annualment because she said that she would never marry again anyway. And she hasn't, I guess once was enough. :o


#4

[quote="SMHW, post:2, topic:207923"]
\

You are asking a loaded question here.

A husband does have the right to expect to have sexual relations with his wife. And it would be reasonable for a husband who was constantly be denied those rights to be irritated and angry.

But a husband does not have the right to violently abuse his wife, sexually or otherwise. Once physical violence and intimidation enter the picture then we are no longer talking about marital rights.

[/quote]

This is absolutely right.

It is wrong for a husband to abuse his wife physically or for that matter emotionally; but it would also be wrong for a wife (or a husband) to abuse their marraige by denying their other the right to sexual relationships (with the exeption of those unable to do so).

Two wrongs do not make a right; neither partner should abuse the other; but if one is abused; it does not make it right to abuse the other in return; that would be unchristian.


#5

Yes, I'm not talking about the woman denying herself to her husband at all. I'm talking about the man intimidating, bullying her into sex.

To me this is abuse. I was on a Grand Jury once, where the wife was verbally and emotionally and physically forced into having sex...she did not divorce him....but someone called the police on him...then she told them what he does to her. The law stepped in to protect her.

My concern is this: many women on this forum have a romanticized/Catholic-Saint view of marriage, that when the wife is forced into sex, for instance, it's OK b/c she's "helping convert him"...and to me it's just plain scary.


#6

[quote="gretahope, post:1, topic:207923"]
Something I find puzzling, so help me here:

There have been many people on this forum who promote huge sacrifice/prayer on the part of wives in order to convert their husband, even in the face of total neglect, even near abuse, intimidation, etc., and that we should no matter what, essentially, never speak of divorce. YET, the Catholic church canonized young women who fled men intent on raping them. So when it comes to a husband doing the same to a wife (mean husband taking what they want, not loving as they should, so that wife lives in fear) it's necessary to submit to this so that somehow her husband will be converted. :shrug: To me the husband seems intent on the same thing a rapist is..Am I misunderstanding something?

[/quote]

I'm sorry you had such a low opinion of men.Hopefully, as you mature ' you'll find out that abusive men are the exception, not the rule. Your post sets up a false premise.The church does not say that women need to submit to their husbands sexual desires at all times and does not say that a woman must remain living with an abusive husband,


#7

[quote="gretahope, post:5, topic:207923"]
Yes, I'm not talking about the woman denying herself to her husband at all. I'm talking about the man intimidating, bullying her into sex.

To me this is abuse. I was on a Grand Jury once, where the wife was verbally and emotionally and physically forced into having sex...she did not divorce him....but someone called the police on him...then she told them what he does to her. The law stepped in to protect her.

My concern is this: many women on this forum have a romanticized/Catholic-Saint view of marriage, that when the wife is forced into sex, for instance, it's OK b/c she's "helping convert him"...and to me it's just plain scary.

[/quote]

Would you please cite examples of your observations, that the CA Forum encourages wives to remain submissive in abusive marriages? I just haven't seen it, but perhaps I've missed something. I find that Forum members consistently advise women in these sorts of dangerous situations to leave promptly and put the safety of themselves and their children first. However, in different situations, others are also advised to overlook the small flaws and even the larger problems in their spouse or in their marriage, with the goal of preserving the union while working on the issue either by themselves, with a priest/counselor, or as a couple. In these kinds of situations where there is no abuse, it's solid advice. Where have you seen this "romanticizing" of abusive behavior on these Forums?


#8

[quote="gretahope, post:5, topic:207923"]

My concern is this: many women on this forum have a romanticized/Catholic-Saint view of marriage, that when the wife is forced into sex, for instance, it's OK b/c she's "helping convert him"...and to me it's just plain scary.

[/quote]

I have never heard anyone represent this view. :confused:


#9

[quote="gretahope, post:5, topic:207923"]
Yes, I'm not talking about the woman denying herself to her husband at all. I'm talking about the man intimidating, bullying her into sex.

To me this is abuse. I was on a Grand Jury once, where the wife was verbally and emotionally and physically forced into having sex...she did not divorce him....but someone called the police on him...then she told them what he does to her. The law stepped in to protect her.

My concern is this: many women on this forum have a romanticized/Catholic-Saint view of marriage, that when the wife is forced into sex, for instance, it's OK b/c she's "helping convert him"...and to me it's just plain scary.

[/quote]

Could you refer us to a post from this forum in which this view was stated and no subsequent posters corrected it as contrary to Catholic teaching? I have read posts from people in that position wonder if they should see it that way, or who are in that situation and have decided to handle it that way themselves, but I don't remember when that false impression wasn't corrected by someone else on the forum.

There have been Catholic saints who have converted their abusers or encouraged their Catholic peers by their holy response to abuse from which they could not escape. You are right that there are people who mistake the admiration due to these heroic actions for the view that escape would have been a less satisfactory option, had it existed.

This is like saying that giving soldiers the Purple Heart sends the message that the military leaders want their soldiers to seek to go out and get wounded. It is a message someone could get, but it could not be farther from what was intended. Yes, sometimes a soldier may be admirable by sticking around when safe retreat is an option, but usually...not.

Although there is a mutual marital debt between spouses, married Catholics are not required to submit to the sexual desires of their spouses whenever their spouses want it and regardless of the attitude and actions of the spouse. Neither husbands nor wives are required to submit to any kind of abuse. If a person's mere presence provokes the other to sin, then it could even be argued that failing to flee the situation could be presenting a person with a near occasion of sin. Encourging sin never converted anybody.


#10

My husband while frustrated and upset over me converting has yelled at me to tears and since apologized for it-citing rightly that it's not acceptable even if he disagrees.

He's not "abusive" though a little "old fashioned" (but he was also told by his very biased Anglican priest that I'm supposed to "obey him and not convert if he doesn't think I should".)

Well I'm going to go to the Catholic church on Sundays now after attending Anglican services with my husband and kids and RCIA in the fall with or without him.

Divorcing or leaving my husband if he didn't/doesn't let me convert isn't an option. I'm pregnant with our 3rd child, he's very kind, understanding and loving on EVERY other issue but this ONE. I'm not going to dump my husband and kids to convert right now. If he puts up a fuss I'm going to wait the children are reared (as a priest I talked to said might be the only option). Then he can deal with what comes I'm not going to put off converting forever for him. But I won't have arguments or have my children come from a broken home over it.

Now a husband forcing himself on his wife is another story. It's rape and physical abuse that he should be turned in for. My husband thinks forcing a woman to sleep with a man is disgusting and twisted.


#11

[quote="estesbob, post:6, topic:207923"]
I'm sorry you had such a low opinion of men.Hopefully, as you mature ' you'll find out that abusive men are the exception, not the rule. Your post sets up a false premise.The church does not say that women need to submit to their husbands sexual desires at all times and does not say that a woman must remain living with an abusive husband,

[/quote]

i'm not sure how you interpreted that I have a general low opionion of all men....where did that come from? I was only speaking about bullying men.


#12

Here’s a post that I think demonstrates what I am referring to. I would love to believe this…but having grown up in an abusive housefhold I chafe at this…b/c I would have so appreciated if my parents would have separated so that we could have some PEACE!!!


#13

[quote="gretahope, post:1, topic:207923"]
(1) YET, the Catholic church canonized young women who fled men intent on raping them. So when it comes to a husband doing the same to a wife (mean husband taking what they want, not loving as they should, so that wife lives in fear) (2) it's necessary to submit to this so that somehow her husband will be converted. :shrug: To me the husband seems intent on the same thing a rapist is..(3) Am I misunderstanding something?

[/quote]

First: The Church canonized Maria Goretti who was murdered for refusing to be raped. Not every woman who ever ran away from a man intent on raping her was canonized a saint.

Second: What? Where in the world did you develop this notion? Submitting to rape (yes, a husband can rape his wife...) is NEVER a means of converting a person. Prayer, fasting and good example are means of conversion.

Third: Clearly.

[quote="gretahope, post:5, topic:207923"]
My concern is this: many women on this forum have a romanticized/Catholic-Saint view of marriage, that when the wife is forced into sex, for instance, it's OK b/c she's "helping convert him"...and to me it's just plain scary.

[/quote]

Please, please show me some evidence of any Catholic woman on this forum who has posted advice in which a woman should submit to forced sex from her spouse in order to convert him!


#14

[quote="gretahope, post:12, topic:207923"]
Here's a post that I think demonstrates what I am referring to. I would love to believe this...but having grown up in an abusive housefhold I chafe at this...b/c I would have so appreciated if my parents would have separated so that we could have some PEACE!!!

But Christ loves us unconditionally, in a sacrificial sort of way. That's how we are to love our spouses! For better OR worse. In sickness and in health. To death do you part. Some people, for reasons of their own, are not capable of giving as much as the other spouse. Some are self-centered to a disordered degree. The spouse, I think, who IS aware and capable has an obligation to his/her spouse to offer prayer, penance, and sacrifice for the conversion of the other spouse. Even if one is unhappy (in the current meaning of the word vs. the theological meaning), one should be grateful to God for the opportunity to suffer and grow spiritually. How is gold purified? By lots of heat! The heat melts the gold and burns off the debris. Same for steel. It is tempered by putting it in the fire! And, so it is with us. Without a Good Friday, we cannot have an Easter Sunday. We have to have a cross in our lives. Sometimes our Cross is sitting beside us in life. :)

And it may take a long time before the "bad spouse" converts. St. Monica prayed for her son, St. Augustine, for 30 years before he straightened out. Guess where they both are now? Think she believes it was worth it? You betcha! :)

In your case, you have a great opportunity to offer up your suffering for your spouse. Hopefully, one day in heaven, he can thank you for your efforts. And maybe you'll come to the realization that God put you two together just for the purpose of helping him convert to Christ. Just something to think about, eh

This is not an example of anyone saying to stay with an abusive spouse. In fact the bolded section says exactly the opposite. You didn't link the whole thread but it appears to me, from this one post, that Scoobyshme is saying that marriage will not always be about personal happiness and sometimes you have to wait out the bad times. Where did you see something more?
[/quote]


#15

. Even if one is unhappy (in the current meaning of the word vs. the theological meaning), one should be grateful to God for the opportunity to suffer and grow spiritually. How is gold purified? By lots of heat! The heat melts the gold and burns off the debris. Same for steel. It is tempered by putting it in the fire! And, so it is with us. Without a Good Friday, we cannot have an Easter Sunday. We have to have a cross in our lives. Sometimes our Cross is sitting beside us in life. :slight_smile:

And it may take a long time before the “bad spouse” converts. St. Monica prayed for her son, St. Augustine, for 30 years before he straightened out. Guess where they both are now? Think she believes it was worth it? You betcha! :slight_smile:

In your case, you have a great opportunity to offer up your suffering for your spouse. Hopefully, one day in heaven, he can thank you for your efforts. And maybe you’ll come to the realization that God put you two together just for the purpose of helping him convert to Christ. Just something to think about, eh

Where in this post does she say that you have to give into sexual abuse to convert? I am pretty sure, and I will bold it for you and copy it again for you just in case you missed it : The spouse, I think, who IS aware and capable has an obligation to his/her spouse to offer prayer, penance, and sacrifice for the conversion of the other spouse.

Prayer, penance and sacrifice, not sexual abuse. I will admit though, that the woman who wrote this could have done a better job of explaining her point and organizing her thoughts but, the fact still remains that sexual abuse is wrong and not a church teaching.
[/quote]


#16

This is one of many I’ve seen. She’s undoubtely sincere…but it seems there is no definition of ABUSE. It seems it’s different for different circumstances, or does the CatholicC give a def? THIS IS key to this issue.
As someone who grew up in abuse, all I wanted was some peace! There was no one “aware” to do penance, etc. And still after 55 years of marriage nothing has changed. Maybe I’m barking up the wrong tree.


#17

[quote="estesbob, post:6, topic:207923"]
I'm sorry you had such a low opinion of men.Hopefully, as you mature ' you'll find out that abusive men are the exception, not the rule. Your post sets up a false premise.The church does not say that women need to submit to their husbands sexual desires at all times and does not say that a woman must remain living with an abusive husband,

[/quote]

i don't have a low opinion of men, and I've been/stayed married for 27 years. Please don't make such quick assumptions...I've been around the block many times.

I've also grown up w/ an abusive father, who is still abusing my mother, and for 55 years. Please do not tell me I need to mature.


#18

[quote="gretahope, post:16, topic:207923"]
This is one of many I've seen. She's undoubtely sincere...but it seems there is no definition of ABUSE. It seems it's different for different circumstances, or does the CatholicC give a def? THIS IS key to this issue.

As someone who grew up in abuse, all I wanted was some peace! There was no one "aware" to do penance, etc. And still after 55 years of marriage nothing has changed. Maybe I'm barking up the wrong tree.

[/quote]

Well, you are barking up the wrong tree by looking to an internet forum for real advice on this. :) The Church teaches that is is perfectly legitimate to separate from a spouce when there is mental or physical danger to a spouse or to the children. There is even a formal process to do this. The Bishop is the one who gives permission to separate but I wouldn't be surprized if the permission has been delegated to pastors in many dioceses. Just go talk to your priest, tell him everything you have gone through and ask him for permission to separate. This is definately something the Church cares about.


#19

To the OP, you are missing the fundamental point in your original post.

Marriage is intended to be a free choice (of course sometimes people get pressured into it but that is for another post).

The Saints who were canonized for running from rapist NEVER CHOOSE TO MARRY them. So they are canonized for fleeing and immoral act.

A wife on the other hand CHOSE to marry her husband. And by going through the sacrament of marriage has invited God into the marriage to help. That is why sex with a husband is not the same.

Now, do some husband get abusive and force themselves. Yes I believe so. However, this is in extreme cases only where it is totally acceptable for the wife to leave. HOWEVER, God IS in that relationship which is probably why some people believe He can have a healing hand.

I am sure your question stems from a very good point. Unfortunately, the way you are posing it sounds like you are either missing someting or not giving us enough detail to understand.

And by the way, just because someone writes something on this forum does not make it automatically God's opinion.

CM


#20

Can anyone tell me what Saints were canonized for fleeing a rapist?

Saints are canonized because they lived lives of holiness and heroic virtue, not for a single action, unless that action resulted in their being killed because of their faith.


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