Tuesday, December 8, 2009

My husband is the boss of me, and he has my permission


A debate has been raging on one of the message boards I belong to... well, raging is a vast overstatement. It is simmering. We don't really have so much raging over there, since it's a Christian message board. On this other board I belong to, debates rage all the time... and getting "flamed" is a way of life. So this is a much calmer sort of debate.

The topic is marriage... basically submission, traditional roles, etc. It's fascinating to hear how people's marriages work, the way they relate and manage day-to-day life, etc.

Richy and I got married when we were about 12, so we didn't have much independent life experience, and any habits we brought with us were childhood habits. We developed pretty traditional roles, in that he is responsible for providing for us, and he takes out the trash. Stuff like that. And I do the bulk of the childcare and household stuff, although I am not such the housekeeper and he frequently does cleaning sprees just because he can't take it anymore. In those instances, we swap roles and I sit on the couch while he slams cabinets and mutters under his breath.

But submission... this may surprise you, but I actually believe submission is right and Biblical. I also believe it can be abused. But in a healthy Christian marriage, with the man leading and loving his wife more than himself, and the wife submitting to his final decision... it just works. Nothing works right without a leader. I was raised a feminist. Falling in love hacked all my plans. :)

Actually, I was pretty independent years into our marriage. It took a lot of years and breaking down of pride and fear to begin to trust enough to need someone. That is a story for another day.

So tell me, who's the boss of you? Are you the boss? Does your husband wish he was? Or does it all work? Has it changed over time?


  1. Does it count to say that in my FUTURE marriage I want my husband to be the boss? I know it's more than an intellectual ascent and I'll be surprised by the ways I have to learn how to submit, but...there's that.

  2. mmm... good post... i don't know my answer yet... i'll be thinking.......

  3. Right now Jesus and my boss @ my job (also my pastor) are the boss of me. Though prayerfully my MOG will be the "boss" of me. I think I could submit to someone who submits himself to Jesus and is willing to die for me.

    'Course I've spent a good amount of time on my own so there will probably be some independentness that will need to be broken. But I trust God to do that in me

  4. We are pretty traditional - can't imagine it any other way really. I feel a lot of safety and reassurance in him having the final say...but we always discuss everything and i have never felt like he was bossing me around. That wouldn't fly. At all.

  5. I boss him around a lot, but when he speaks, I respect his decision and am obediant. This has taken a while to grow acustom too. For many years, I thought oh he just doesnt care about things. After a few disputes behind closed doors, I realized that I tend to hurt and offend him by constantly running him over with my quick responses and solutions. So even though we both still have our mild disagreements, we both realize that we each have an opinion and that no matter what we are on the same team and that we both want to see each other succeed. So yes, he is the boss of me and I do submit to his authority. Like I said its taken a few years and some really hard times to get to this point of trust.

  6. God is the boss of me.... I am the problem.

    My goal is to become a better listener and to become quicker to obey..... and better at dying to myself.

    I THANK GOD that I have no husband. He knows me and loves me unconditional. I am still recovering and breaking free of bad decisions and bad situations and I am not anywhere near being ready to empower or edify or build up another or be supportive and take on another persons needs for the rest of my life. That is one of my goals... but not on the radar.

    TMI? O well....

    I am so very happy that God put you two together.. you are perfect for eachother.. You were one of the three little girls that I started praying for back in 1982.... God has picked out the three perfect WOG for three awesome sons.

    I miss you Jess. Wish you were close enough to come over alone for a visit.

  7. Joy??? alone!?! at your house??? does that ever happen? I can't imagine it with Jess or you....

  8. hmmmm i think that i am like you that it took a while for me to trust my husband to lead. Now he hold my heart in his hands.

    when i hear the word submissive i think of a puppy putting its tail between its legs. (I'm sure this is wrong thinking on my part)because i know thats not gods desire for me. I should Change that image and replace it with... well not sure yet. all i can think of is the woman washing Jesus feet. She loved him and she humbled herself to him IN LOVE!

    I truly feel like we have a partnership. is that wrong?

  9. I think that's a beautiful picture of submission, the woman washing Jesus' feet. In some ways, we as Christians should always be in that posture of love and humility, whether we are the husband or the wife, you know?
    And, no, it is a partnership. We have one, I just defer to his leadership when it comes to some stuff...

  10. I don't see anything wrong with this if it works. I admire it if it works. My problem is that my husband wants to be the leader/boss and I think he puts himself first. I have to demand everything I want and then I'm told/explained to that I'm being unreasonable. Basically it's his way or the highway and he won't listen to my needs, wants, feelings. It's very competitive...down to little physical gestures competitive, like if we are going somewhere he wants to stand up to leave a few seconds after me so I am waiting on him for a few seconds.
    So anyway, I guess what I'm saying is that this model only works if the husband really DOES put the wife first and I'm sad because mine does not.

  11. yeah, it definitely takes two. I'm sorry this is a sad point. You didn't ask for advice, but... ;)
    my former pastor's wife used to say, "If the problem is 90% his fault, then all you can do is own your 10%." I know I have had to lay my offenses down many times and try to find what is my 10%.... it's not easy, but it is easier than trying to change someone else...

  12. This is so beautiful and when done right it is one of the hottest types of marriage there is, I have absolutely no problem obeying my husband and living under his authority, I even insisted on including the word "obey" in my marriage vows and I'm so glad I did but if he were the kind of man who didn't act in my best interest I really don't think I could do it - I am a woman who believes that for me personally, if I can't kneel before a man vulnerable, submissive, obedient, in love and reverence then I have no business marrying him. I found that man and I am never more happy and content than when he is firm, strong and decisive with me - sometimes we need him to be very firm, iykwim. In a nutshell and in an ideal world, I wish all couples could experience what it is like to live in such harmony, him, strong, compassionate, devoted and dominant - her, compliant, reverential, dedicated and obedient. I hope all my fellow sisters find joy, contentment and peace with men who are unafraid to be themselves and are strong enough to put you in your place so you can be yourself too.


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