A Woman's Worth~ part II

Thursday, January 21, 2010

This is the story of a woman named "Sylvia". (You can thank seven year old, Finn, for that one!) She is married to her college sweetheart and they have 3 small children. Her husband, "Joe" is a likeable guy. He has a lot of friends and a great reputation, but often times, "Joe" comes home from work late, smelling of alcohol. "Sylvia" can't wait to discuss her day with him, and the kids all fight for his attention. But after he's been drinking, his moods become unpredictable. The slightest thing could set him off. He begins screaming at the children and at "Sylvia" for not being able to control them and the household. He says hurtful things such as, "You're worthless", "you're stupid" etc. "Sylvia" takes it, and takes it, and takes it. And the next day, once "Joe" is sobered up and back to normal, he acts as if nothing ever happened, and is his "sweet self."

Now there is nothing acceptable about this scenerio. Obviously, "Joe" needs to recognize his problem and face the music of his disease. But "Sylvia" is not helpless here. She is an enabler. "Joe" continues with this behavior because he can. He can give in to his selfish desires and then act out in any way the wind blows him, and there are no consequences for his actions. A very important lesson I've learned recently is, boundaries must be set, but setting boundaries for your spouse is a losing battle, you must set them for yourself. "Sylvia" would most likely get nowhere by telling her husband, "You are not allowed to drink anymore. When you drink, you become angry and mean, and it's disruptive to the kids and I." Now, most likely, she has already tried this, and got nowhere. Which is why she has resorted to just dealing. She must set the boundary for herself and then make it known to him. She could say something like, "I just want you to know, the next time you come home like that, the kids and I are going to give you your space, and keep ourselves busy in another room." Or if the situation got really bad, or even violent, it would be best for her to remove herself and the children from the household all together. And then she has to stick with what she says. Not get angry, frustrated, or try and yell back, but to just remove herself and her children from that hurtful situation. After all, that is her responsibility.

We can still be kind and to the point. Then stick to your guns and let him suffer the consequences of his actions. He may not feel it right away, but in "Joe's" case he is going to miss spending quality time with his kids in the evenings, he is going to miss them growing up, and he is going to find "Sylvia" slipping further and further away from him. Now, your situation might not be this extreme, you may be dealing with a husband who speaks to you with disrespect, or like my friend I mentioned earlier, a husband who is pulling away from you and refuses to take the initiative to work things out properly. You deserve boundaries. You don't deserve to be abused, or even treated with a "lax" attitude. You are special. You are beautiful. And you are worth fighting for. God never said this life would be easy, but He did say He wouldn't give us more than we can handle. And remember, you are only held accountable for what you do and do not do, you can't control someone else. He will be held accountable for his own actions one day. Ladies, don't be afraid to set some reasonable, stable boundaries for yourself in your marriage. I think we could all benefit from this advice:)

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