Collaborate without boundaries

R2 Day 11 Love Cherishes

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My wife was sick all day and in bed with flu symptoms. She called off work which is very hard for her to do. I believe she puts work above everything- above family, above God, everything. (Again, that's just my opinion due to what I see)

I did buy her a Powerade to make sure she hydrates well and offered to take our five year old with me to my Bible study so she could rest. That's the only way I could think to complete the dare considering the circumstances. Our five year old was taking a nap in our bed and I handed my wife the Powerade in the hallway outside our bedroom. Our ten year old went into the bathroom and I told her through the door that we would be leaving for Bible study in about ten minutes and my wife, in a not so friendly manner, told me to be quiet so I didn't wake up the five year old. Frankly, it made me angry that she said that because I didn't think I was being loud and I tried to remain calm and responded with "I don't think me talking is going to wake her up" and nothing else was said after she rolled her eyes and walked off. Then a few minutes later as I was changing my clothes she laid down in our bed and I asked if she felt any better and how long she thought she would be sick. She said she still feels really bad but she had to go to work the tomorrow. I asked if she went to the doctor today and she said no.  I told her I had just read a story about a 21 year old guy in Pennsylvania who died after being diagnosed with the flu and he was a health buff. She responded with "I have the flu. It's a virus. There's nothing the doctor can do." I told her I was just concerned because in the article the doctors recommended that anyone with flu-like symptoms should immediately go to the doctor. I feel like since she is a nurse that she thinks she knows everything about healthcare. It's frustrating.

It's hard to explain everything that happened from then until now so I'll just document our text conversation.

Last night:

Her: I can't keep my eyes open anymore, I'm going to sleep in your bed until you get back just wake me up and I'll move. Allison's still asleep.

Me: You can sleep in our bed anytime you want.

This morning:

Her: I can't because you won't let e sleep there alone and you will want to sleep with me and you know I don't want that.

Me: March 15, 2017- you begged me to let you help me and I had so much hatred and anger in my heart that I refused. I was wrong. Dead wrong. By the grace of God I made it through that. Now I want to help you. You eventually gave up. I can't do that. God won't allow me to do that. I have to show unity. God commands it.

Her: God won't allow you to let me sleep in our bed alone after you promised to sleep on the couch?

Me: No. There's a part in the Bible that says husband and wife are only to separate for a short time for fasting and prayer. There's more in the Bible about marriage than a person thinks. I'm doing exactly what is says.

Me: I would love to sit down and teach you. I have learned quite a bit from the Bible in the last few months.

Me: I'm struggling with how to help you and obeying God. I fear for my soul. I'm lucky to be where I am because I defied God for so long.

Her: I'm upset that you didn't tell me about the Disney on Ice paper and automatically wrote down that you would go (with our five year old) without even offering or telling me.

Her: Your trying to love me with control and demands, that's not love. The Bible tells you what love is, it's kind and gentle. That's not what your being.

Me: I disagree. I don't feel like you are looking at this correctly. I have not made a decision without talking to someone else. Not one decision I have made was mine alone. I have a very large support group and they help me make the most biblical decisions. I don't think I've done anything to control you. I feel like you are just trying to find something to place the blame on me. I'm not perfect by far and I admit that and I'm trying every day to improve myself and I DO show you unconditional love.

[At this point I had to think about my therapy sessions because of what she is saying. My therapist recommended the book I mentioned a few days ago because he thinks it will give me insight into why she thinks I am controlling and manipulative. He suggests she is "projecting." That she has a problem with control and manipulation and has to look somewhere else to place blame outside of herself.]

Her: So you think the Bible says you should make decisions without your wife?

Her: Today was the last day and I asked you about it on Monday and you didn't say you were going. (Disney on Ice)

Her: I want you to find the text where I wouldn't respond to you about our child's Disney trip.

Me: I'll try but I did ask you. I promise I did. I will not purposely do something like that.

Me: It's hard to answer you about the Bible because it tells us exactly how we should treat each other and I'm trying but I don't see you doing any of it. I'm not being mean or judgemental at all so please don't think I am. I only want to help you just as you wanted to help me.

Me: I don't understand how you don't see my love. I've bent over backwards to serve you. I've been told that I need to stop letting you trample me (that's from our children who see more of our lives than anyone else) but I don't see it like that. I'm serving you in your time of need like God says I should. I humble myself for you.

Me: Instead of fighting with each other if we fought for each other and lived biblically it's not even imaginable what life would be like.

Me: Here's the bottom line: I love you. Period. I will serve Christ and I desire you to be there with me.

Me: You have so many strengths that compliment me and I think I have a few to offer you too. It could be beautiful.

Me: You probably think I sound like an idiot. I may be but my intentions are pure and I am trying to serve you. I urge you to talk to the preacher or Grandpa Hopkins or Kyle (her brother) or the marriage therapist or my personal therapist. I'm asking you to get help just like you have always asked me to do.

Me: Sit down and talk to our children. They are hurting and don't want this, need this, or deserve this. They are very angry at me for making them go to church. But I fear for their souls as much as I do about mine and yours.

Her: I'm on call this weekend with Amedisys, I didn't look at the call schedule ahead of time. (Notice how she changes the subject)

Me: Ok. I'll do whatever I can for you. Just let me know. I hope you feel much better today.

Me: I'm planning a movie night tonight. Kids are going to probably be mad but they're kids. They don't understand how important family time is.

Me: We haven't had a family movie time in months.

That's it. Nothing since then. I'm sure she has a lot to think about. I probably made many mistakes throughout that conversation but I love my wife and I want her to be ok and I know from experience that to disobey God never works out in your favor.

  • I would be careful having so much conversation through text messaging. It is so easy to misinterpret tone of voice in a text. I know that can be difficult, when sometimes it feels like the only way we can communicate with our spouses. Texting is the only way my husband will communicate with me for 3 months now. I hate it.

    I noticed something interesting that your wife said. She asked you if the Bible says you should make decisions without your wife. I know from what you've said in the past that she is often very closed off. But it sounds like she does want you to be united in your decisions. I also noticed that she asked you this question after you said you've always spoken to other people before making a decision. Just an observation, and maybe something to consider. She may actually be giving you some important insight into how she is feeling.

  • When she gets mad for no reason and yells at you, don't worry about defending yourself.  Just bite your tongue and this will keep her from having additional ammunition to hit you with.  As you have seen, she will use everything against you if she wants.  

    You leave her more in God's control when you do not defend yourself.  Because you leave her with nothing more to go after.  

  • I agree with omj about too much texting can sometimes be counter productive.  But I can understand youwanting to continue the conversation.  

    You know your wife better than me obviously.  Do you think she is put off with all the bible talk?  Maybe she's beginning to look at this as you being a bible thumper, not in a good way.  Many of our spouses when we don't even share the scripture take just our changes is throwing God in their face.

    Consider if you should tone down sharing the bible or it's importance and letting your

  • behavior, actions, attitude, kindness, and patience be what shines the light of Christ that she needs.  And eventually this may lead to her wanting to hear about the bible.  

    Again, you know what she is more likely to respond to positively.  

  • Omj, I do hate texting so much but it just seems like that is the way things keep going, for both of us. We are both so busy but I suppose my relationship is very important, especially in God's eyes, so I should make an effort to treat it like that.

    My wife does want to be involved in joint decision making. She wants us to be friends forever. I just have a problem with that because it's the wrong thing to do and it's sending our children and the rest of the world the wrong message, that it's ok to run away from your problems.

    Tim, I try to limit the Bible talk but over the years my wife is the one who kept me going to church against my will so I have to assume there is a woman in there who loves God. I'm trying to balance that but it is very difficult now.

  • Also omj, she sent me a text yesterday that I will talk about in that days journal that I took as her yelling at me. I don't know what her intent was but the text came of as cold and mean. So I see that texting is definitely not a way to do this kind of communication.

    I feel like she is just on the verge of sharing her feelings but something I'm assuming is her pride is holding her back. Plus since we've already spent $4,500 on attorneys I feel like she thinks she has to continue what she's started. As if there's no turning back now.

  • Eddie, don't worry too much about what your kids or the rest of the world sees. Your wife is searching for unity in the decision making, show her love by attempting to do this. Don't see it as telling her it's ok for her to walk away, you're telling her we are still a family and we make these decisions together. You will show her that you value her opinion and that she is an important part of your family.

    I sometimes wonder if my husband feels like he's already taken it too far to turn back. Neither of us has hired an attorney (we don't have kids or many assets). But he's already moved out, I'm sure he's told his family, and he's already living with another woman. When the opportunity arises, I will remind him that he can always come back, and our marriage will start fresh from that day.

    Money can makes things tough, but remember that God provides. It's just money, and I believe that God is using our current money issues to help convict my husband.

    Continue to follow God, and leave the work to be done in your wife to Him. When the timing is right, she'll share her feelings. But God may still be preparing you, so let Him work everything out in His timing.

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