Only Men Can Use ‘The Silent Treatment’?

Only Men Can Use ‘The Silent Treatment’? July 18, 2019
I think this will always be the graphic we use for Larry Solomon of Biblical Gender Roles, a man so weak, wimpy and snowflake-y that he’d find the idea of relieving himself at the same spot as mermaids and centaurs threatening in some way.

We have to talk about Larry Solomon of Biblical Gender Roles, the Hairy Man, yet again unfortunately. Why? Because Larry is answering another of those likely to be catfishing letters he gets. This one was extra special, it involved a woman talking about her husband, her supposedly grown up husband, using a very childish form of manipulation to punish her. Larry takes the ball and runs with it, claiming only men can use ‘The Silent Treatment’

What are we? Like five years old, stomping our feet because Mommy said no more cookies before dinner? Seriously, the silent treatment is something very juvenile and childish. This is not how grown people who are mature and married should ever do things.

The letter describes a  man so petty that he stomps off to sleep on the sofa in his ‘man cave’ until the wife apologizes. She states that she sometimes just leaves him to sleep in the man cave for a week or so until he gets over whatever he was angry about.

I think her solution of letting him stew until he gets over it is the correct one in marriage. The problem being that is sounds like from her letter that this is his big default go to if she denies him sex, or does not agree with him 100% of the time. That’s just not healthy.

Marriage does  not mean you’re joined at the hip, are always going to view anything the same way, or that you must agree.  Mature people can handle a little pushback and disagreement in their lives. Agree to disagree and leave it at that. It’s really not worth stomping about manipulating others like a giant toddler.

And that’s what the silent treatment is, an immature manipulation of others. Doesn’t matter if you’re five or fifty five, it’s still silly.

But that is not where Larry takes it. He starts out babbling about situational ethics and killing people before making it a sin for everyone but men.  Larry goes on to claim that if women or children use the silent treatment towards a man it’s sinful and manipulative:

And of course, if a child engages in the silent treatment toward their parents until the parents give in and give them what they want this would be a classic form of manipulation and is absolutely wrong from a Biblical perspective as children are commanded to obey their parents.

And that would be why when a kid gives you the silent treatment you just carry on like they aren’t. To give them any extra attention just validates their silent tantrum. These are kids we are talking about, with imperfect control and growing brains. Don’t make a big deal about it. But then he adds women to the mix:

In the same way if a wife were to give her husband the silent treatment until he gave her what she wanted, whether it is agreeing to her position from an argument they had or just giving her an apology such behavior toward her husband would also be a form of manipulation toward her husband and is condemned by the Scriptures.

So far I agree in that no one should be giving anyone else the silent treatment. But let’s keep in mind that Larry’s letter writer never mentioned that she gave her husband the silent treatment, just that her husband did it oh so poutily at the drop of a hat.

If a husband’s silent treatment toward his wife comes from a place of bitterness toward her then his silent treatment toward her is wrong.

However, the Bible show us that God as a husband to Israel used the silent treatment as one of his methods of discipline toward his wife

There’s that word again that Christians misuse all the time to harm others ‘bitterness’ So according to Larry if you are using it to discipline your wife it’s a-okay to use the silent treatment.

So even if our wife does not apologize, we need to let our anger go. However that does not mean our wife is free from the consequences of her actions. We as husbands can continue disciplinary action whatever that may be long after our anger has subsided.

But we must also show our wives that while we may sleep in another room for a few nights that we will never forsake them just as Christ will never forsake his church.

Spank, but don’t spank in anger. Alright, I’ve got it, Larry. Motives of the heart make it fine for a man to act like a weak little toddler towards their wives instead of, oh I don’t know, actually behaving like an adult and communicating with the partner to try and resolve their problems.

Don’t do this! And if someone does it to you simply laugh and tell them you were tired of hearing their voice anyway, so this is a treat, a vacation from nagging.  They give up quickly when you do that.

Edited to add this: Right after posting this someone pointed out that Trey Magnusson, frequent commenter of Lori Alexander’s that threatened to dox me, threatened me with death and a whole long horrible pile of things had this to say on BGR’s post. Warning NSFW and filled with abuse of wives. The worse part I’ve bolded:

In the description of Lisa’s husband above, I see no sin whatsoever in his actions. When we sin against God, we break fellowship with Him. When you sin against your husband Lisa, YOU break fellowship with your husband. Having a contentious heated argument with your husband is SIN. Denying your husband sex just because you are “not in the mood” is SIN. No question, both of those are clearly sin against your husband and against God. Lisa, go and sin no more!!!!

I have a couple of suggestions for Lisa’s husband… and any other husband in this position.
1. Send your wife off to sleep in another bed or on the couch. I find that to be more effective. If she doubles down on her sin and refuses to obey you then you going is the 2nd choice.
2. If this is not working, (if she is not making progress over time) ramp up the discipline and start taking away other things she values until she quits contenting with you, being disrespectful to you and denying you sex (for no good reason).
3. Denial of sex by a wife is the ultimate form of disrespect and control of her husband. If she has denied you sex (for no good reason), sex should be required before she is allowed back into your marriage bed. Oral sex while on her knees before you seems very appropriate and swallowing is a must. Spitting you out is also a form of disrespect.
4. Apology vs asking for forgiveness. Husbands, insist that your wife humble herself, confess her sin to you (very specifically) and ask for your forgiveness. This is a huge difference over her just saying that she was “sorry” and will have much stronger effect toward eliminating the sinful behaviour for good. This of course applies to your sin toward her also. It is what God requires of us. (1 John 1:9)

This might sound counterproductive but once she has the security of knowing that you are a strong enough man to handle her and to (lovingly) put her in her place when necessary, she will feel more secure and confident in you and your marriage and she will WANT to submit to you and serve you more and EVERYTHING about the marriage will get better and she will be much, much happier. Experience talking here.

For Lisa, the sooner you quit SINNING by being a contentious wife and quit SINNING by denying your husband sex, the better off you and your marriage will be and you can become a valued and cherished HELPER to your husband instead of the tolerated, hindrance that you are currently being right now.

Somehow I seriously doubt Trey is married. No one should ever have to put up with abusive treatment!!


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About Suzanne Titkemeyer
Suzanne Titkemeyer went from a childhood in Louisiana to a life lived in the shadow of Washington You can read more about the author here.D.C. For many years she worked in the field of social work, from national licensure to working hands on in a children's residential treatment center. Suzanne has been involved with helping the plights of women and children' in religious bondage. She is a ordained Stephen's Minister with many years of counseling experience. Now she's retired to be a full time beach bum in Tamarindo, Costa Rica with the monkeys and iguanas. She is also a thalassophile. She also left behind years in a Quiverfull church and loves to chronicle the worst abuses of that particular theology. She has been happily married to her best friend for the last 33 years. You can read more about the author here.

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