It Was Awful!

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People always say, “The wife deals with her family.  The husband deals with his.”

Wrong.

I watched as my husband grew more frustrated.  I was belittled, made fun of, and most of the time, mistreated by my family.  It tore him a part to say nothing.

I deal with my family.

But I wasn’t dealing with them.  The primal instinct of a husband is to defend his wife and keep her from harm.  I wasn’t letting him defend me and it caused emotional harm.  It caused harm to our marriage.  Our fights weren’t about each other; they were about my family.

If I served my family by going beyond our budget to please them, I thought their anger would subside.  I thought if I compromised beyond reason they would begin to treat me better.  I remember the last family party at our home all too well.

It was awful.

Everyone left early.  I fell on the dining room chair with my head hung and a heavy feeling in my soul.

“No more family parties here.”  He was firm which was rare.

“Okay.  I agree.”  I finally realized that I can’t love anger away.

After I left my family, I realized how detrimental it was for him.  While I worked at forgiving them and going through the healing process, my husband had trouble with forgiveness.  Every time their name came up, his eyes would flash and his lips would press together.  It took him longer than I to let it go, and shortly before I left my family I told him he could say or do anything he wished.  I was no longer going to prevent him from having a healthy expression of anger or keep him from defending my honor.  It’s worked well, too.

Once we removed the source of our ire, we rarely fight!


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14 thoughts on “It Was Awful!”

  1. And don’t beat yourself up about it sis. Just move forward. As you and I know marriage and family is a constant learning thing. We have to try new things and we will make errors..I am leaning each day about marriage and family. I just keep telling myself that I can’t please everyone I have to please God first. My marriage comes second next to Christ.

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  2. Families can be so very difficult, I know before me and my husband got married we talked allot about both of our families and how we are going to handle it. And the first thing we did was say our marriage comes first before the family. We both after we got married the family was there but when we got home and started living this life as a married couple we demonstrated to our families that they must honor our marriage like we do. Which means we are not going to always be around them at every event that happens in the family. Our first priority is our marriage to each other. So for the first six or more months we didn’t become that active with the family. And they respected it they might not of liked it but that was our stand on our marriage. And so now when we gather for special holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving there is acceptance if you know what I mean. I see why God talks about marriage in Ephesians.

    Your husband is the protector and though it does take him a little longer to forgive then you God is still working on him. I think it’s a man thing because when me and my hubby have a disagreement I will come to him immediately and ask for forgiveness. Him on the other hand he will normally wait till the next day or a few hours later and ask.

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    1. Our men are so stubborn. LOL.

      That was a good plan you and yours had. I love what you said, here, “Which means we are not going to always be around them at every event that happens in the family.” I was working on weaning my family for the first year from constant contact, but sadly I should have been more firm that first year.

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  3. Nikole, your husband and you are so obviously one as you showed us in this post. I completely nodded through. As you know, I have had to break up with my family too and my husband has been the knight in shining armor in all this. Our hubbies really love us.

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    1. yes, they do, and I think our husbands deserve a medal, Bonnie. It’s sad that families split, but only Christ can heal hurting hearts. He outstretches His hand and people are offered a choice. It seems too many turn Him down.

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    1. Yes…they can. But as long as there is forgiveness in a family there is hope. Only God can change hearts. I don’t know your story, Katie, but is there anything that I can pray for?

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  4. Wow, Nikole. What a tough situation to have to live through. And grow through. I’ve also found that my husband has a harder time forgiving somebody who hurts me than I do. I guess it’s that protector role in them. I’m thankful you and your husband didn’t let it come between you. But I am sorry that you had to go through it to start off with. :-( I guess we all have hard lessons to learn… Thanks for sharing this one.

    Blessings,
    Lisa

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    1. Thanks for visiting! Can’t really blame our husbands in that regard, but it is healthier to forgive and my husband is still in the forgiving mode. The anger is ebbing thankfully towards them. It was a tough situation. That’s why I put a high value on healthy boundaries. Every marriage should have them.

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  5. Family and anger are difficult to deal with when they aren’t our own, much less when it is our own. Your vulnerability in opening up and sharing is to be applauded even if it took a while to allow your husband the opportunity. We cling to a lot of things from years past that God heals in His timing with His healing balm that only He truly heals. The healing balm God placed on the hurts probably brought your marriage to a wonderful place that only God do!

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    1. It has. We were all ready a healthy marriage when we married, but he married someone who did not grow up with healthy boundaries. So I had to learn them and it took time and I thank God for a man like my husband because he didn’t give up on us.

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