Got a Critical Guy?
Does your husband seem insensitive?
Does he seem overly critical?
Know this: Many men are challenged by situations requiring empathy – some tremendously so.
Our natural reaction is to become hurt, then angry.
Dare you today to be quick to listen, slow to speak, and even slower to become angry (James 1:19).
HELP your husband understand why the kids (or you) can’t do this or that, instead of getting angry at him. Know that just because he has empathy in one situation doesn’t mean he will be able to immediately have it in another, no matter how similar the circumstances are.
HELP him INSTEAD of getting angry.
Know that God wired him this way.
Dare you to teach others Titus2-style this morning and share HOW you helped!
And in case you missed it, please have some empathy on the unborn by reading about this barely-talked about precedent-setting case going on in Philadelphia right now. And pray for God’s mercy upon us all, and His justice for those who have no voice.
Love to you,
My husband and I married in 2010. I had suffered a massive heart attack just a few months before we were married. With everything I was going through, fear of dying ruling my life and the heart medications I was a total wreck. I married the love of my life which happens to be a critical, “hard to love” man at times. Needless to say we fell into fighting like no tomorrow. I am saved and his is not. Please pray for him and myself. We separated and he eventually started seeing another woman. It has been two years since we have been together but through conviction of the holy spirit I felt I should go to him and work it out. God has moved in my heart in so many ways over the past two years. I did so many things to make things worse when we were together. Please pray for God to restore my marriage and help me to live through his word and wisdom. Also that through his light in me that my husband will be saved. God Bless
Firstly I am joining Leah in prayer for you who have commented, and praying for those who have read and left silently.
Secondly my dear husband, the love of my life, can be oblivious to anything other than his own interior audience and his own thought paths. Often times leading to me being crashed on the side of a conversational highway wondering what happened. He loves to be right, to have the last word and to debate things I am passionate about because “You are cute when you get worked up”. He also has a look and a tone that says very clearly you are lacking in all areas of intellect.
These aren’t secrets. He knows he does it. We have talked about it. Prayed about it. He even knows I am sharing it here. This critical-at-times guy also notices when my shirt is missing a button, when there is a stain I didn’t see, or if my truck has a low tire. This critical-at-times guy also sticks up for me, stands by me and backs me up when I need it, and often when I least expect it.
The first time I did the Respect Dare I discovered a whole hidden marriage inside our marriage. One where the hurt lived, the unspoken feelings lived and where painfilled silence lived. Once we found it, and started cleaning house we found ourselves in an amazing new place. A place where I had learned to be quiet, or to state my feelings without ‘so much feeling’. Where he felt safe to share, and to be wrong. Where I could be calm and say, “I need this”. We were close to the point of quitting. More than once. I started to pray more for him, with him and over him.
We clarify things more now, we hold each other more now and we cherish each other’s strengths. Sure he can be critical, and analytically maddening, but it is a good balance for us. We work hard, and work prayerfully, to keep it in balance. We argue. Sure. I blow up. He shuts down. I cry but instead of staying to fight I walk away for a breath. And instead of shutting down, he comes to me. We are getting better, by God’s grace.
Love him a bit more when he is critical, he could be using it as a shield for his heart. Ask him to love you a bit more when it hurts because with him you may not have a tough shield. That was our biggest revelation. With him I have no need for the defenses that protected me before. I am more vulnerable by choice and by grace. He is less in need of having a shield at home because he is is safe with me. We take care of each other’s hearts. And patch them up after we argue.
I could talk about twenty minutes about the bazillion things I love here.
Thank you for sharing this, Shanyn. 🙂 STELLAR. 🙂
Love to you,
Beautiful!!!!! I love this, Shanyns!
So last night, my critical/analytical husband starting taking apart something I had said while I told him the story. So while I expected to get to the end semi-triumphant, instead, I never even got to finish because each step, each part had just not been quite good enough or the way he would have done it. I was deflated – physically and emotionally. But I didn’t know what to say or say it respectfully so I chose silence.
A few minutes later, he finally interrupted himself and asked why I seemed upset. Factually, I stated that I was upset because I didn’t have a chance to finish my story before he found something to say about it.
He wasn’t very happy.
I wasn’t very happy.
And there went date night.
So I suggested we go to bed and get some sleep.
He came in and wrapped me in his arms. He apologized for how I felt. I told him that I didn’t want an apology for my feelings. So he apologized again for not letting me finish and for not seeing the steps I was taking.
I had a choice in that moment to tell him everything he did wrong. To tell him, still in truth and fact, why he had gone about this all wrong and had hurt me.
Instead, I chose forgiveness. I said “I forgive you” and opened the door to let him and God work out ways he could do better.
Last night, the way he did better was to be better. He held me and asked me more in-depth questions about my day. He didn’t say anything when my pregnancy legs hippity-hopped all over the bed being a nuisance.
And this wasn’t perfect. There was a lot of hurt. And some people are farther down a path where they need to give more specific instructions, but this was my path and my experience.
Prayers for everyone on this journey.
Maturity is recognizing where others are sometimes, and gently asking for what we need/what is right when they have no clue – and being satisfied with a baby step so THEY are encouraged to keep trying.
Love to you,
I love this, Leah! It could have had a VERY different ending. Thank you for sharing!
I have tried everything. My spirit is crushed and I feel worthless. I can’t do anything right, and feel like I need to leave this 23 year marriage behind. I won’t even pray with him right now since he treats me so poorly. Nothing has helped, studies, articles, counseling. I am not healthy and don’t have the strength to do this any more. I have been on treatments the last year and should have been supported, but haven’t been. It’s all about him, and what he wants, and he is always right.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5, 6 NIV)
Do NOT let the enemy win after 23 years. You have come so far and put so much effort and strength into winning this battle. God is faithful and stronger. He will provide!!! I am not trying to say that means you have to stay or leave… I just pray that you will remember that He hasn’t left you and He will let you know what to do. Whatever is in His will is what is the best thing to do.
I pray for clarity and a renewed sense of hope for JB. Wrap her in Your arms and help her to remember – to KNOW – that You are a faithful God who loves her and has not left her. Give her wisdom, discernment, and confirmation over Your will for her life. I know, LORD, that You don’t give up and that You have a plan even to save her husband and humble him before You as well. Give him someone to be a guide, to help him find his way to Your arms, and to make him new before You. Whatever Your purpose and Your desire in this place, LORD, let it be done… In Jesus’ Mighty, Precious, Powerful, and Saving Name, Amen!!
Boy, do we ever understand.
I do not know how long this will go on for you, but please take care of yourself, maybe even in a small break for a few days. And know that God is teaching you so that you can birth something to bring Him glory…your testimony is being developed…it’s always painful. And you are not alone, baby. You are among sisters here, just trying to follow God through this painful life.
Hold on tight.
Don’t give up.
Trust our Lord.
He’s on your side and about His business.
Love to you,
praying for God to give you wisdom, light and strength, JB! I’m so sorry you are hurting so much. 🙁
I really don’t have a clue, what to do about this… the worst ist, in the last few weeks his critisiscm got me fall into my old habbits and patterns again. So I am no use to none of us. I really wish I’d knew hwo to help him – and me…
I feel your pain.. I know it all to well, as my own.
I pray that you will be encouraged, sister. May God wrap you in His arms and love as He gives you a peace that passes all understanding. I pray for confidence and a reminder that you are no longer the wife who used to respond this way because He has transformed you… and He picks us up every time that we fall and guides us back to the path He desires for us. I pray for protection over your mind and heart – so that you won’t be defined by the criticism or harsh words that may come.. instead, may you have a deeper understanding of how Christ sees you and who you are to Him. May your husband’s heart be softened and changed as your actions bring him closer to God (without him even being aware) and may he come into contact with others who can be a guide to our one true Savior for him. In Jesus’ Name and with a deep confidence in His Truth, Amen!
You are learning, Amanda, and the learning comes at a high price and paves the road with tears – but it is worth it. Don’t give up. So glad you are here, beautiful!
Love to you,
If only it were that easy… 🙂
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