Need “Permission” to Take Care of Yourself?

In the Respect Dare E-Course recently, a wife told the story of how she continued doing things that she found enjoyable throughout her marriage.

She joined her husband in his interests, but then she also made time to pursue her own.

She felt fulfilled.

I found her extremely smart. So much so that I had to share what she said with you today.

I am blown away by her wisdom – we wives often give up the things that made us interesting people in the first place, all in the name of misguided “sacrifice.” Yes, we are called to serve, be unselfish, live lives full of freedom, care for the home, love well, be your husband’s friend, a good mother to the children, etc. (see Titus 2:3-5 for more), but God isn’t the only one who loves a cheerful giver, and unfortunately, we feed the fires of resentment when we forget to take care of ourselves.

And suddenly, we wake up one day, surprised at finding ourselves no longer the women we were when we got married, our identity invisible amidst the lives of the people around us.

And all too often, our families suffer. Our husbands may no longer find us interesting (most men want a life partner, not just someone to provide them with sex and a sandwich), and our kids might begin to believe mom’s role is that of maid. And that’s it.

And some part of us dies on the inside, because we’re not living out the uniqueness of His creation within us.

Yes, be one in marriage, but both be whole, be who He made you to be.

In reading Proverbs 17 this morning, I wondered if we could avoid much of the “strife” if we remembered that while we are “one,” we are also individuals. The healthiest marriages that I’ve seen are those where identity isn’t derived by some other person’s definition, but rather, two complete people, both receiving their identity from Christ, coming together to reflect the relationship Christ has with His church (see Ephesians 5:22-33 for more). These marriages really do exist, and I’m glad we’re on the journey toward becoming like them.

Dare you to share, comment, or “subscribe” today, double dog dare you to post what your personal passion is…

As for me… it’s horses. What’s yours? Seriously – I’d love to know. I’m also interested in your reaction to something… I’m considering doing a monthly or weekly conference call thing… I get so many questions via email, Facebook, Twitter, etc., I just feel awful that I don’t have time to respond to them all. Would you be interested in joining me for something like that? And if so, would you consider a small donation to help fund it? I found out today it will cost a minimum of $120 a year to do something like this. Got thoughts? I’m listening.

Love to you,



  1. says

    Horses horses horses. Riding through the trails in our mountains. Heaven.

    Meditation. Quiet times with beautiful music at a downtown studio where my only focus is the conversation happening between me and Jesus.

    Blogging/Teaching/Writing. Sharing my heart with a diverse group of people who appreciate, validate and encourage me.

    Thanks for this post. :)

  2. says

    Electronics repair or gamin here! Also, am I the only one who sees the actual problem of most of these husband wife situations as communication problems? We know as Christians we need to be equally yoked, but i have often wondered why. I communicate differently to secular people because of fear, or the feeling they will not understand my point. This, to me is something that could break a marriage, so im partially understanding. Its only been until now , that i am in a relationship with another that has Christian values, that i understand how much easier it is to communicate, and how much less fear i have of doing it! Men who could care less about the Will of God and more about secular life tend to feed selfish desires, from morning to night and eventually wiping out the line in thier own minds of Right vs. Wrong. Now the communication fail is at the begining when you have a choice to make known your desires internally and lifelong. Saying to the man-to -be, im a Christian woman and plan on staying that way, and desire a partner that is of equal caliber. Instead, shrugging it off to, “ah, he’s nice, he can change,” and then ends up not. In the begining, communication is the problem, and toward the end, communication is still the problem. Constant lying, or “unsaid things”. To me, withholding information is as bad or WORSE than lying.

  3. says

    Another dart to the heart….

    I’ve begun to find ways to dance again–our together time is so limited with our diverse work schedules, so it’s been hard for me to find a class I can take during the day that doesn’t interfere with that. But he doesn’t seem to begrudge me opportunities to take classes that might chip away at “our” time if I come back from it happy.

  4. M says

    Crocheting, sewing and anything crafty! Unfortunately, I know of some men who think it is unnecessary for their wives to have a hobby since they “could rather spend that time cleaning up” (while their house looks fine!) because all they really want IS sex and a sandwhich. I feel sorry for those kinds of wives. And husbands, who are missing out on being blessed by a balanced and happy wife;)