The Day When I Didn’t Like How My Husband Was Leading Our Home
It was a day I’ll never forget in our marriage. My Beloved and I had been married for less 3 years and our first born son was about 6 months old. One afternoon my man was feeding our little guy some solid foods; rice cereal, peas, and pears. How kind of him, right? Well it was kind of him, however, he was doing it all wrong!
As I stood there looking on I told my Beloved point blank, “That’s not how you do it.” Now mind you, I didn’t say those words with a nasty, condescending tone, I merely just told him what I saw. And what I saw was him feeding my boy his pears before his peas! Well, any person knows that you feed a baby his veggies before you feed him his fruit, otherwise, the kid won’t eat his veggies.
My words didn’t go over too well with my man. In fact, he snapped at me and said, “Do you want to do this yourself?”
I was quite surprised by how he responded. Actually, I thought he was overreacting. Yet, I pondered his actions. I hadn’t seen him display this type of behavior before in our marriage and I couldn’t help but take notice and wonder why he snapped the way he did. Obviously he was responding to what I said to him.
I soon realized he felt I thought he was doing a poor job as a father, although that was not the intentions of my heart.
This incident became a defining moment in our marriage.
Rather than taking over my son’s feeding and relieving my husband of his duties as a father, I took a step back instead. I quickly apologized for stepping on his toes and then I shared with my husband the ‘why’ behind what I said and I did so in a humble and gentle manner. Now I’m sure I felt in my mind that what I said and how I said it wasn’t a big deal, however, based on how my husband responded, I could tell it was a big deal to him!
I saw how our marriage could easily shift since we brought our baby into this world.
Mama Bears are the ones who carry the baby for nine months, then birth the baby, then feed the baby. It’s our natural domain. We become experts in our field; the field of our children, knowing what they need, when they need it, and how they’ll respond in the process. But our men are out of the loop on this. They’re looking in on our world and asking how they can help and desiring to be a part.
I saw how I could easily usurp my husband’s headship position over peas and pears; something so small and seemingly insignificant that could threaten our marital oneness! Now I’ll be the first one to tell you I don’t fully understand the concept of being one flesh with my man. The Bible refers to it as a mystery (Eph. 5:31). But I have realized that as I’ve stepped on my husband’s leadership toes, I’m breaking down his headship position, which hurts our one flesh union.
For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything. Eph. 5:23,24
I wasn’t seeking to be the head of the home because that concept is contrary to the Scriptures, however, I saw based on my actions how easily I could slip into this role, especially when I began my journey of motherhood. I find this is the most common time that women find it most difficult to submit to their husbands, and when the marriage, specifically, the husband’s leadership, breaks down the most.
When a husband wants to lead but a wife takes over then you can expect your husband to either fight you for the position of headship or he’ll just stop leading altogether. Husbands do this because they either want to keep peace in the home or they don’t want to be criticized for the way they do things. I totally get that. When I make a meal that doesn’t turn out very well and I receive complaints, I’m not too fond of that. My natural reaction is to tell those who are complaining to feel free to make their own meal!
Since I wanted my husband to keep feeding my child, I figured I needed to learn a different approach to the situation or I just needed to let go of an issue if it didn’t matter a hill of beans. Sometimes a wife’s controlling ways are just utterly ridiculous. Of course I know this from first-hand experience! 🙂 Dressing a cute baby in stripes and solids really isn’t a big deal, what matters is that they’re dressed!
5 Ways to Help Your Husband Lead When You Don’t Want to Let Him
- Study your husband. Find out what makes him soar as the head of the home and find out what it is that you do that makes him want to withdraw from his leadership position. Learn to recognize the difference, then move towards the positive and away from the negative.
- Continue to build your husband up as the leader of the home. (Everyone needs encouragement no matter what their roles are.
- Pray to be a wife who encourages her man rather than one who tears him down.
- Keep the bigger picture in mind for your marriage. The ultimate goal is to walk in the ways of the Lord in your marital relationship. By stepping back and allowing you husband to lead (aka, do things differently than you do) you’re ultimately bringing glory to the Lord. Not only that, but you’re giving respect to your man in the process, and every husband needs a wife’s respect. So now you’re strengthening your marital oneness through this process as well. The by-product of all of this is a better marriage! Your sweet actions and attitudes will make it easier for your husband to love you.
- Be intentional about strengthening your marital oneness rather than obsessing over the peas and pears!
Now let me put a caveat in here. I realize that not all marital struggles are over peas and pears, but rather much weightier issues, however, I’ll have to save that topic for another post.
Next up in this series I’ll address When He’s Not Changing Fast Enough and When You Don’t Think He’s Doing a Good Enough Job in the Leadership Department, although this is not the title of the post. Then I’ll close up this series with, When Your Roles are Reversed.
So have you ever had a time when you stepped on your man’s leadership toes?
If you’ve missed my prior posts in this series, you can read them here:
- 14 Reasons Why a Husband Doesn’t Lead His Home
- Helping Your Husband to Lead When He Doesn’t Know How
- Helping Your Passive Husband to Lead
- When He Doesn’t Want to Lead
- When Your Man is Broken and Can’t Lead
Live a poured out life for Christ,
Great post! I struggled with this critical spirit in my marriage for many years. Once I made the conscious effort to step out of the way and let God lead my husband, the stress factor was greatly reduced and it did wonders for our marriage.
Oh the critical spirit!! It’s the kiss of death for any marriage! So blessed to hear that you’ve wrangled that beast, Christa!
When I first read this I thought it was satirical. I hope that one day you find God, because honestly your marriage doesn’t sound Godly. It sounds abusive. A Godly marriage is one in which your man treats you as Jesus treated the church. Would Jesus snap at the church for giving Him advice?
Think on this. It sounds as if you respect your husband, which is great, but a marriage is made of two people. Your husband must respect you as well.
My husband adores me, respects me, AND he loves me with a sacrificial love. 🙂
We’ve had these issues as well in our marriage, in fact, almost the exact same thing (I’m not sure it was pears and pees), and I reacted the same way. Now this really is two issues, the one you described, and the way I reacted. Both have to be dealt with. There is a big difference between pushing the bowl away and saying “Do you want to do this?” and calmly saying “Perhaps you would like to rephrase that starting with ‘Thank you for helping, can I offer a suggestion?'”. One is a defensive posture out of fear or pride, the other is from a position of leadership.
So much easier to think about when not in the situation. Haven’t managed to pull it off yet while in it.
Yes, it is two issues, Jay, but seeing how I’m not writing to men, I don’t give wives counsel on how to ‘fix’ their guy! 🙂
It’s a wife’s gentle and quiet spirit along with her loving influence that can generally soften her husband’s response towards her.
I’ll write a series soon on the husband who tends to be overbearing or somewhat harsh towards his wife. This post, although very applicable to most marriages, is designed for the husband who has a hard time leading his home.
Sorry, that may have come across wrong. I didn’t mean to suggest you didn’t tackle the topic adequately, was just reflecting on my own situation and trying to say that you’re not the only one that needs work.
Ha! I wasn’t offended, Jay. You’re a man, and men respond differently than women! I was raised with all men, I’m married to a man, and I’m raising all men! I’m surrounded by testosterone so I get your position. I just responded the way I did to make sure my female readers understood. 🙂 You know, those relational beings?
Sort of have the opposite going on. Two sisters, my wife has 4 sisters, I have 3 daughters and my brother has 4 daughters.
Dear God, your gender confuses me sometimes.
Women are simple…although not as simple as men, I might add! The female gender needs to feel loved, cherished, thought beautiful of,(even when we think we’re ugly), we need to be heard, validated, helped when we want help (usually often but only if it’s done our way! Every woman struggles with this! 🙂 We need a man who protects us but not one who makes us feel like we’re our husband’s daughter. And we need our guy to be okay with the fact that we change our mind, often. What can I say, we’re insecure human beings! Start by listening to her heart and make sure you don’t stomp on it when she shares it with you. 🙂 Tell you wife I said, Hi.
I will tell her.
In the last few years I’ve realized 3 methods of dealing with a spouse (on the line that they are of the opposite gender):
1) Be a mind reader
3) Be miserable
I’m not so good at #1, I don’t like #3, so that leaves #2. Works surprisingly well.
I love this post and hope it helps many women.
Mothering is not so easy. I am twenty years a mother now, it was not easy to find the right path/way together as husband and wife. A large part came down on my shoulders, because we have a private business, where he had to be present. Now, after so many years, we do much more together.
What a blessing to hear that you figured out the right path for your marriage and you were able to overcome your obstacles!
Thank you sweet friend!
Really enjoying your posts. Good advice that I can use.
I can’t find the link to these 2 posts you mentioned above though…
“When He’s Not Changing Fast Enough” and “When You Don’t Think He’s Doing a Good Enough Job in the Leadership Department”. Could you please send the link?
I changed the title! Sorry about that. Here’s the next one in the series: http://joleneengle.com/10-ways-to-help-your-husband-blossom-part-1-a-link-up/
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