The Marriage Bill of Rights

The Marriage Bill of Rights September 16, 2014

We live in a world of entitlement where we are taught to protect our own rights. Marriage, however, is a relationship that can only work if you’re more focused on the rights of your spouse than your own rights. Embrace the responsibilities listed below to protect these rights for your spouse and your marriage will thrive!

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Your Primary Responsibilities to your Husband or Wife:

Your husband/wife has a right to your love.

Our culture has attempted to redefine love as nothing more than a feeling, but real love is commitment displayed through consistent self-sacrifice, affection and protection.

Your husband/wife has a right to your time.

When you got married you willingly gave up exclusive rights to your time, because your spouse now has a rightful claim to it as well. Time is the “currency of relationships” so invest time into your marriage.

Your husband/wife has a right to your respect.

Regardless of your mood or your circumstances, your spouse has a right to be treated with dignity and respect at all times. A marriage can’t survive without it.

Your husband/wife has a right to your money.

“For richer or for poorer.” Your debts, assets and possessions are no longer separated as “his” and “hers.” If you own it, your spouse owns it too.

Your husband/wife has a right to your very best.

Don’t go all day giving the best of yourself to co-workers and strangers and then give your leftovers to your spouse. Strive to give the best of yourself to your marriage.

Your husband/wife has a right to your faithfulness.

When you made a vow to “forsake all others,” you were committing to never let anyone take your spouse’s place in your mind, your heart, or your bed.

Your husband/wife has a right to your honesty.

Secrets are an enemy of intimacy and there’s no place for secrecy or lies in marriage. Be open, honest and transparent in your communication with your spouse.

Your husband/wife has a right to your body.

This one might sound controversial, but in 1 Corinthians 7:3-5, the Bible clearly outlines the fact that you have a responsibility to be consistently available to your spouse for affection, comfort and sex. For more on building stronger sexual intimacy in your marriage, check out our brand new video series, “Best Sex Life Now” (by clicking here).

Your husband/wife has a right to YOU.

Be willing to place all that you have and all that you are into the hands of your spouse and invite him/her to do the same for you. This is the essence of marriage.

To build a stronger marriage, check out bestselling book*, “iVow Secrets to a Stronger Marriage” which is available on Amazon.com as a Paperback, Kindle ebook and audiobook and is now also available on iTunes for ebook download on iPhones, iPads and all Apple devices.

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*The first 3 chapters of iVow is available as a FREE instant download when you signup for our email list at the top of this page. You’ll receive encouragement in your inbox and NO spam. 🙂

For additional marriage-building tools, check out our free video series on “The 4 Pillars of a Strong Marriage.”


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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Keila Siqueira

    Thank GOD!

  • Talisa Smith

    I would love to read a Sample of your Book.

    Me and my husband both need a little insight these days on how to treat each other.

    Thanks You,

    Talisa Smith

  • Kim

    I believe in my vows, whoel-heartedly…..we’ve been harried 24 years now. I love m husband more each day, and never would have made it the last 14 years without him, after the death of our oldest son.

  • Shannon

    Do you give your spouse respect when they are cheating on you? How can I respect that? I am a Christian. I believe in forgiveness and second chances but if the lies and secrets are ongoing what do you do?

  • dave willis

    Shannon, I’m so sorry for what you’re going through! You can respect your spouse even in their sin by treating them with dignity, but the sin itself obviously needs to be addressed head-on. There is NO place for infidelity or dishonesty in any marriage. I’m praying for you both. Don’t lose hope. I’d also encourage you to check out http://www.SaveMyMarriage.com

  • dave willis

    Talisa, if you sign up for the email list on my homepage at http://www.www.patheos.com/blogs/davewillis you can instantly download the first 3 chapters of my iVow book for free. I hope it’s an encouragement to you both.

  • Jake

    So, do you support same sex or Nah? Lol

  • dave willis

    One of my most popular posts has been “My beliefs about gay marriage” which you can read here if you’re interested: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/davewillis/my-beliefs-about-gay-marriage/

  • Pamela J. Haas

    I am very grateful for your posts and am praying for a true, Christian marriage. I am 62 and I haven’t been blessed with the experience.

  • Amanda Harris

    I love the Marriage Bill of rights. Very important. If your spouse has betrayed your trust/ crossed a boundary you set before marriage mpre then 6 times as farr as ( looking up pornographic/ nude pictures of other women) knowing it breaks your heart when he does it. How do you rebuild that trust? In the past when I found out I could more easily believe him when he said he would never do it again or he never wanted to hurt me again. This time I am beside myself and feel a stranger to my husband and am feeling distrust towards him. This time his words don’t mean a thing because his actions speak louder. Yet he doesnt know what to do to rebuild the trust. what can we do? We are getting rid of facebook and he is having little to no time on the internet and I still feel distrust towards him. Thank you for writing your advice articles.

  • J

    How many times is “too many” to let go and continue with a marriage when the husband, or wife, constantly lies about porn? You’ve written several blogs on the subject of forgiveness, dealing with conflict, porn, etc. I truly appreciate your blog. If your husband is constantly watching it, lying about it, etc – how do you move on from that? When does it become just overlooking his sin, his infedility as I believe it to be, his lies? I believe in forgiveness and grace. Showing God’s grace to your spouse as God has shown us His grace. But when does it become you’re just allowing it to happen to you over and over again? The problem is addressed each and every time. When is it OK to let go and move on and accept that he won’t change even when he tells you differently? Finding him watching porn only has made him get better at hiding it. There won’t be any more finding out and it only begins to feel as though you’re playing the fool by believing that he’s not watching. How do you deal with that as a Christian wife?

    There are no right answers…I know.

  • Ashley Keffer

    Im in the same boat. He did finally stop as far as I know and we have all the same passwords now but I still dont completely trust him and I still have those “what-ifs” haunting me. Im really not sure what to do. I wish I could trust him but I feel like as soon as I let my gaurd down it wil happen again just as it has time and time again. How do I heal?

  • Carolina Guerrero

    Hello i am just suggesting if you Guys can have this material in spanish. I would love to see it cause that way my husband as well can see it.

    Thanks

  • dave willis

    My book “iVow: Secrets to a Stronger Marriage” is now available in Spanish on Amazon and iTunes.

  • dave willis

    Give forgiveness/grace instantly and give your trust slowly. Forgiveness can’t be “earned” but trust must always be earned through consistency of words and action. Praying for you both.

  • dave willis

    Praying for you and your husband. I’d encourage you to visit the site http://www.xxxchurch.com for resources to help him overcome his addiction to porn.

  • I learned years ago that Marriage

  • Stacy

    Good Dad-I have been married for 26 years. My husbands addiction to porn started when he was 11. 13 years before we even met. I have done all the things you have prescribed in your advice and I am going to counter you. His choice to view porn is the same as infidelity. His choice had and had nothing to do with his love for me. Each time he was caught with porn he used the same words-If you were willing this wouldn’t happen. As a wife I cannot compete with a car trunk load of CD’s of other women. It is degrading to be treated like a whore. If he is a good dad then he would be protecting his spouse by being accountable to another(not just her) when he has these urges. This is so wrong to blame the wife and tell her she has to find out why. What about him? Looking at porn is a stress relief to some men. A fantasy land where nothing is real and they can pretend their responsibilities do not exist. My husband has been a youth leader, a leader in the church and on the board of directors. All the while “cheating” on his wife. The core problem here is not her. When they married he vowed to protect her and love her. In you r list of 7 things of being a man “one is being responsible for your own actions.” I can tell you as a wife I can feel the difference in my spirit and soul when I am having sex with my husband if he is loving me or if it is to offset a release from viewing porn. The second rips your heart out.

  • Stacy

    And I counter you on this again. A plentiful sex life doesn’t not fulfill the heart and soul of each person. Porn of either sex treats the human as an object and not as God’s creation. Infidelity often is about meeting other needs. The “Cause” often will not be lack of sex at home. I know of women that have gone to workshops and counseling to help their husbands with impotence, to find out what was wrong with them only to find out that were porn was the issue. That having the secret life was the issue. And yet even bringing it out in the open the husband refusing to accept responsiblity for his part in the hurt. Your statement that “she” needs to find the reason why “he” steps out. I have even asked my husband who is highly protective of his daughter”would he like thousands of men viewing his daughter like that?” No counter. Yes there are some cold fish wives out there. I was even counseled at one point to with hold sex until I got what I wanted. Yet what I wanted was to be unbroken.

  • Stacy

    apologies to Dave Willis. My statement should have said “In the list of 7 things..” not “your list” . Not trying to infer that Good Dad and Dave Willis are one and the same.

  • Stacy

    Yes Good Dad~I know all of the statistics. I know that men think of the physical 100 X more often then women. We are created by a Great God who has wired us differently for His reasons. I did the 30 days by the way. It lasted a year. It did not change anything. The women or men in porn do not talk back. There is no relationship that needs to be worked on. There is no bills waiting to be paid, houses to be maintained. Real women are not photo shopped to look better. As I said before I was counseled by a Christian woman counselor to withhold sex until I got what I wanted. In my gut I knew that was so wrong and I quit her counseling that day. We are living in a day of immediate gratification. If we don’t get what we want we go look for it elsewhere. Not anywhere in our vows does it say that that is allowed. I believe it says to “stand against the wiles of the evil one”.
    So in all of this do you please yourself or do you take a look at what God is asking you to do? And that goes for both men and women.