by Mel cross posted from her blog When Cows and Kids Collide
Ah, yes. The portion of the chapter where Debi poisons the well. Oddly enough, she seems conflicted during this section. Debi seems torn between toeing the party line about “Your husband is always right!” and admitting that mothers may know what is best – especially when mom is trying to extricate her daughter from an abusive husband.
“Mama Says He’s a Dud
If your father is a gentle, kind man, and if your mother has always been … how shall we say it … a little dominant, then what I am about to teach you might save your future marriage. “
By crushing you. And your mom.
“When you marry, or even while you are in courtship, your forceful mother will not appreciate or understand your dominant King betrothed. She might say he lacks humility, which indicates his lack of spirituality. If it is clearly apparent to all that he does indeed love and honor God, then she will simply say he is arrogant and selfish. As the Kingly type, he may be a little overbearing. It goes with the territory. He will expect service, and will assume you will jump with all joy just to do his bidding. It is his nature.”
Boy, why isn’t such a great catch like him married already? Quick, girls! Snatch him up before he gets away.
“If you are unwise, you will be swayed by your mother’s scorn. Don’t let it happen to you! “
*listens for the splash of the poison in the well.”
“If you are wise, you will recognize that your mother measures all men by your father’s Priestly nature. To her a good man is gentle, kind, and considerate. Through her eyes, you will see only the negative side of your husband’s type, and it will cause you to become critical of him, too.”
Be wise. RUN AWAY!
“Be patient with her. She is honoring your dad by measuring all men according to him, but your King man will walk a different path.”
FYI: You don’t have to go down that path. Let him go alone. You’ll be better off for it.
“Right now, if you know that your thoughtful soft-spoken daddy is a Priestly type and your mama has always sort of ruled the roost, then you will need to make a document much like you did in the chapter on the Prophet-type man. This one will need to be more personal than the first one your wrote concerning the Prophet man because it will be read by you (who are probably a gentle heart) and by your forceful mom.”
Notice how you didn’t have to write anything for the Priest Man? That type is sane. Go find a PRIEST type.
“Take a pretty piece of paper and write a letter to yourself, to be read sometime in the future when you are finding it difficult to submit to your dominant man. Explain to yourself this potential problem and how you will respond to it when it arises. Make some real commitments. Date the document. Put this document in your Treasure Chest. “
Speaking as a teacher, that is the worst writing prompt ever. What the heck are you supposed to write?
Hi! Someday, you might find it hard to submit to your dominant husband – the one you haven’t met yet. Sometimes it is hard to submit. I think that I should submit to him. I commit to submit to him. This is really important to PastMel and should be important to FutureMel.
If you do decide to write this letter, turn the paper over and write the following bit on the back in BIG LETTERS:
If I am reading this letter to you, Mom, I have serious concerns about my marriage that I am afraid to bring up.
Please don’t give up on me. I need your support to get out of here.
www.thehotline.org can help.
“Someday – sooner than you think – you will be married. There will be a time when you are discouraged with your demanding husband and you will say something negative about him to your mom. She will take the opportunity to tell you what has “been on her heart”. Showing it to your mother will, hopefully, change her heart as well.”
*Splash! Second dose of poison hits the water*
Let your mom read the back of the letter. You can use a Mama Bear on your side right now.
“Keep in mind that your mother is not the enemy. She is Mom. She is the one who cared for you when you were sickly; she is the one who believed in you when you were down. She is the one who would have given her very life for you, but, because she is Mom, she will be the first to speak out when she thinks you might be hurting. Treasure her for the wonderful friend that she is, but remember, once you are married your allegiance changes. “
That’s one conflicted paragraph.
It’s a good thing that Mom’s allegiance doesn’t change. Remember that she is probably seeing the situation more clearly than you.
“Right at the beginning of the Bible, God tells us, “and thy desire shall be to thy husband and he shall rule over thee” (Genesis 3:16)“
That’s not the whole verse. (Again.)
in pain you shall bring forth children,
yet your desire shall be for your husband,
and he shall rule over you.”
In short: This is what happened because of the Fall, not as a part of God’s original plan.
“One day you will be Mom to a grown daughter, and in that day you will understand the protective instinct your mother has for you. Until then, be wise, be loving, be patient with your mother, and stand by your man.”
Unless he’s a “King”. If he is, get out now!
If you need help, call 1-800-799-HELP (7233) or (if you have access to a computer that your partner does not), go to www.thehotline.com
AntiPearl: I think God made a woman to be strong and not to be trampled under the feet of men. I’ve always felt this way because my mother was a very strong woman, without a husband.
Mel is a science teacher who works with at-risk teens and lives on a dairy farm with her husband. She blogs at When Cows and Kids Collide