So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; Ephesians 5:28 (NASB)
When 2 people willingly marry they do so because they like
each other, and can’t
wait to spend every moment of life together! They are compatible and talk,
laugh, share the moments of their day with each other. They will frequently say
they are one another’s best friend.
What happens that causes a husband to begin to stay at work many hours a day, avoid his wife and children, and refuse to give her affection and attention? The complaints of the wife are frequently like these:
- He won’t touch me, kiss me, hold me anymore
- He doesn’t come to bed with me anymore
- He is not interested in sex
- He avoids being with me
- We don’t talk
- He won’t lead
- He doesn’t want to spend time with me
- He is bitter, angry, distant
- He hides behind his job-behind the “good provider” face, staying at work rather than being
- When I ask him why he (fill in the blank from above list) he only gets mad
What makes him want to hide himself from the woman he once hated
to leave in the morning? Over the next several posts this week I will be addressing this issue and presenting a few possible reasons why things take this direction. It is not possible to cover every reason in this forum. My goal is to offer you some things to think over, consider and pray about.
It is easy to point fingers at your husband and blame him for the condition of your relationship, but very rarely are the problems only the part of one person in marriage. While he may be sinning against you, your responses to his sin might also be sinful! You cannot change your husband. The Lord wants you to examine yourself and repent of your sin in the relationship (Matthew 7:3-5).
That being said, I am going to give you a couple of common reasons a husband withdraws from his wife. In my experience in dealing with problems like this in marriage it comes down to only a few options. Today we will look at 2 possibilities: 1) he is guilty of something or 2) he is in escape mode, maybe both.
Sin hates exposure. He may be hiding some secret sin in his life such adultery, pornography or emotional infidelity with someone on
line or at work. He may have a gambling
or substance abuse problem that he doesn’t want you to know about. It has
become too large for him to conceal it around you so he avoids you.
The other option is that he is escaping what he has at home. Some men don't care for the domestic life and prefer to play all the time. Our culture makes it very easy to run away from responsibility without going far from home. Sometimes it is as easy as the garage, or video games in the basement Man Cave. It could also be the local bar or the golf course.
Home might remind him of responsibilities or problems he does not want to face (debt, wayward children, or his failures to lead). He may not know what to do with his own children because he had no father to positively influence him. Perhaps he does not know how to relate to his kids, to talk with them, or play with them.
If there are money problems or debt issues the temptation to escape will be very high. Everywhere he looks he is reminded of the reality of the situation as he sees all he could lose. Collection notices in the mail, bill collectors calling on the phone, threats of repossession or foreclosure bring home the seriousness of the situation. Having the money be spent before it is earned is a crushing thing to a man. A wife that brings up the money problems in a critical manner, or complains that there is never enough money only adds to the burden.
Finally, the ugly reality is that some husbands want to escape their wives. The man doesn’t like his critical, bitter, angry, rebellious wife and he is avoiding
the unresolved issues he has with her or she has with him. This is the reason you have to examine yourself to see what logs are in your own eye. You have to determine if you have become a bitter, angry, harsh or nagging wife. You have to look at yourself through his eyes and be willing to see yourself as he sees you.
We will pick it up there on Wednesday. Please come back and read the next posting on this important topic.