I just came across this article and want to applaud “Kate” as I thought the same thing on some of her points. Cornering someone into a lie because you are shaming them for their choices is somewhat how I saw this woman as well.
According to C.J. the lies are abuse. Are they? This woman apparently married him knowing he wasn’t a member yet is trying to force him into her way of thinking with her behavior of questioning the drinking constantly knowing he will protect himself with the same lie. I’m not excusing him, just wondering if this woman knows her part she plays in the discord.
I was married several decades to a non-member who made his own choices about what he drank or did and my shaming, argument or contentiousness never got him into the eternal marriage we have today but in fact had the opposite affect. It took decades learning this and in fact and the same idea is working with those of my children who have become inactive. It took love and respect, moving on with my own eternal goals and letting him make those decisions for himself. I first had to see that the only person I can change is myself and keep on with my own soul work. Then things started to change and fall in place which was a surprise to me as it had been so long I had somewhat mentally given up on that happening.
Things may never change in her case and I wonder where she is with this shaming of him months later? We must love people where they are and that unfeigned love can start to move mountains.
So far no comments have covered the topic of abuse. Lies in a marriage are abusive. Trust is shattered and trauma occurs. Lies are a betrayal of sorts. Until this wife realizes she and her marriage are being abused, and whether she wants to continue living in this situation, or is able to remove herself from it in time, it will be a miserable marriage for her and any children that are or are to come in that union. So many women do not understand the complexities of an abusive relationship and choose to remain married out of covenant with God when the spouse has chosen to leave that covenant. Even a civil marriage between two non-Christians is a covenant of sorts. It is an agreement at least between themselves. God is not ok with abuse. However, He allows us the choice and if we choose to leave for the safety of our emotional and physical health, the Lord is faithful to assist as needed. I hope this woman can get into some abuse counseling and help her realize just where her situation is. There may be more going on with her husband behind the scenes than she knows about--he won't be the one to reveal it to her because he lies. She could be in danger from a number of issues. He is the one with the problem and makes the choice to remain. She also has a choice whether she wants to live her life wrapped around his behaviors.
KATE: The tyranny of political correctness has stricken again!
I lived long enough to hear the kind of horror stories you mentionned into my own family. This includes one of my Great-Grand-Mothers witnessing the suicide of her desperate sister through drowning into the ocean. But we are only talking here about an epidemic in this generation - including among far too many Latter-Day Saints - that consists in choosing to end one's marriage rather than going the extra-mile in sticking to covenants through thick and through thin.
It seems to me that the husband is in a no-win situation. If he tells her the truth, she will get angry and start yelling at him. If he tells her a lie, she will be angry about the lie. She doesn't say that her husband is an alcoholic. She only says that he doesn't think it's "healthy". Is she really concerned about his health? Or is she treating alcohol as if it were a sin, which for him it isn't. Put it another way: a wife who thinks that eating ice cream isn't healthy, but she keeps doing it. Her husband asks her if she ate ice cream. She can admit the truth and face the consequences or she can lie. What if the husband simply stopped asking? It's hard to love a Daddy/Watchdog, and it's hard for the husband to love a Mommy/Watchdog. A lot of people use "health" as an excuse to make others' lives miserable. She knew when she married him that he was not LDS and that he enjoyed alcohol. A lot of people enjoy going out for a beer with their buddies and it isn't a problem as long as he isn't driving drunk. I suspect that what she's really trying to do is make him live an LDS lifestyle. That's not what he signed up for. Accepting one another is part of having a successful marriage. Is this really worth all the contention?
Charles DeFranchi - the reason our great-grandparents didn't divorce was because for a woman at that time, divorce was a one-way ticket to poverty and social ostracism for herself and her children. Women put up with a great deal to avoid that fate, including, but not limited to, physical and sexual abuse (which was perfectly legal, btw) and adultery and other damaging behaviors by their husbands. Now that a woman can support herself (and her children), the balance of power has shifted, and women expect more from marriage than their great-grandmothers did. As they--and their husbands--should.
And Sarah, yes he is lying to her. However, he is under no covenant to not drink alcohol, and he has his agency to do so if he chooses and there is nothing wrong with that. Repeat: there is NOTHING wrong with drinking alcohol if you haven't made a covenant not to. I assume he is not coming home drunk (she wouldn't need to ask if that were the case), so it seems that she might be exercising a bit of unrighteous dominion here--trying to shame him into not drinking. He's pushing back by giving her the answer she's demanding--which is a lie--but this sounds like it could be game playing to me. She says "he's ashamed of drinking because he knows it's not a healthy behavior" but it would be interesting to ask him if that's his actual opinion, or her projection of what his opinion should be. Most people I know who drink in a normal (not to excess) fashion do not think of drinking as an unhealthy behavior at all.
Seems like they need to establish ways to communicate without it escalating. He may think lying is the better option and leads to better outcomes for himself and even for their relationship. To coax him into telling the truth, they need to establish times and ways in which they can both feel safe to speak their truths to each other without super negative repercussions.
I hear in this woman’s continual discomfort and questioning a desire to establish a healthy boundary for her marital relationship. It also appears that she may need assistance in establishing said boundary. It is a normal and healthy expectation for a spouse to function without the use of a chemical substance. My hope is that she will gain confidence to create a healthy boundary for herself regardless of her spouse’s choice and begin to assert independent of this dysfunction.
Bryan and Dave, he's lying to her. That's the issue. She ain't trying to stop him drinking. But sure ..keeping the peace is more important than trust/ lying/ deception !!
He just needs to tell the truth when she asks.
End of issue, but he won't.
I agree 100% with Dave's comment. Instead of trying to force him to accept your way of life, love him anyway for his good qualities. Perhaps then he will change because he wants to, not because he is forced to to keep the peace.
Remember, someone else one time wanted to force good behavior and save all of us. How'd that work out for him?
I'm wondering why this woman feels like she needs to "check up" on her husband's drinking. She knows he drinks. He's ashamed of it and already knows he shouldn't be doing it. Bringing it up obviously bothers her husband so much that he deflects the question by lying. So what useful thing does it accomplish to bring it up? She could end all of this contention by simply not bringing it up. How many more years will it take for her to figure out that what she is doing isn't working?
A couple of days ago, I attended the sealing of a young man to his parents after more than twenty years of being less active in the Church. More interestingly, his father had come home drunk year after year and had a tendency to spend his earnings gambling. Many people were pressing his wife, an active Latter-Day Saint to leave him. Instead, she stayed with him and waiting patiently for his conversion. They are well into their 70's now and you would not imagine a more beautiful old couple. They both attend the Temple regularly, serve faithfully in various assignments, and contribute to playing a good influence on their kids and grandkids. Too many couples nowadays call it quits as soon as something unpleasant about each-other arises. What about the power of grace and the atonement, long-suffering, unconditional love, being a light and not a judge, and remaining together for better or for worse till death doth us part? Talk to your Grandparents or Great-Grand-Parents about that and they will tell you that marriage has never been easy, but they'd never consider divorce as a solution unless being faced with extreme circumstances.
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