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Wolf

A woman should submit to her husband

A woman should submit to her husband  

13 members have voted

  1. 1. Is this a moral requirement?

    • Yes - in all things, a woman must submit to her husband
      6
    • No -it's an old-fashioned concept
      4


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Wolf

This is an issue I have debated a lot with my own wife and family. Very curious as to what people think.

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linate

i would have chosen something between "submit in everything" and "it's irrelevant".  i like the idea of deference better. 

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Wolf

Yeah - perhaps I was a bit inflexible in the poll choices. It is, of course, a contentious subject and hotly debated, with lots of subtleties that can't be an either / or choice. But I hope to generate some good discussion.

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BarbaraTherese

 Having received advice from a priest probably around 1974 that I must submit to my husband in all things, I went home and submitted totally to an emotionally abusive and unsupportive husband, finally an unfaithful one.  I wound up on a psychiatric ward. 

This is what could happen potentially when a priest goes firmly by the book, refusing to consider the personal situation and journey with a person seeking advice.

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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CatherineM

I thought this was something I’d never do. The longer we are married, the more I find myself appreciating the comfort in turning over control at times. 

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Wolf
Quote

Having received advice from a priest probably around 1974 that I must submit to my husband in all things, I went home and submitted totally to an emotionally abusive and unsupportive husband, finally an unfaithful one.  I wound up on a psychiatric ward. 

 

I'm sorry to hear this, Barbara. I know it can be a real issue for some people, and I do hope you've recovered from the experience now.

 

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BarbaraTherese

Thank you, Wolf, for your kindness.  I am long over it - it is now only a distant memory from what seems like another life time  It happened now probably 40years or more ago and I have coped and come through the other side to get on with life - my sons have too although the scars and affect remains with them understandably.  I am now 72 in Jan 2018.  My two sons in their very early fifties.  It was never about me it was about my two children - just coming into their teens - and their mother is in a psychiatric ward.  Later my ex forced me out of our home and then divorced me.  The marriage is now long annulled. He is now many years remarried.  I maintain a friendship with him and his wife, as do my sons.

When it all was sorted out as best it could be I think, I did learn much and grew through the experience.  That was the positive side of a very negative situation.  Reading @CatherineM  post, it has occurred to me that perhaps what I went through is the reason I am an almost incurable control freak - for too long I allowed my then 'husband' to have absolute control.  Perhaps.

My primary point is that for a priest to advise a person approaching them for help of what the law states - and that is that - might, in the priest's mind, exonerate him of his duty (or does it?)- however, it can have far reaching negative affects on more than the person that approached him and their life, and it would include children and their lives if there are any children involved.  Fortunately, I was in touch with a priest religious and theologian lecturing in our seminary and grew very close to him as my confessor and SD until his death.  He helped me (journeyed with me) as I unravelled the whole situation and came to terms with it as I best I could, without him I would have a far different story I think.  It was that priest that suggested I apply for annulment.

I have wondered at times if the priest who laid down the law to me had acted differently, perhaps I would not have broken down and my children would not have had to go through the trauma that they did.  Hindsight can be a gift and it can be cruel.  Perhaps the priest felt inadequate and resorted to the law as a means of dealing with his personal situation - then, I think, he should have advised me of his difficulty.

I think that "wives submit to your husbands" as a sweeping generalisation to be applied in all cases without exemption is faulted and indicates, or it has to me, that indeed the law cannot save (St Paul - Romans 7).   The Law provides boundaries, while not unusual for life to be a messy situation outside those boundaries.

The face is that human nature is indeed faulted and weak.  We are sinners and sin means that to some degree one is outside those boundaries that The Law provides.  One might be a little outside or one might be right outside in a mess.

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BarbaraTherese

Good to read the whole Chapter 3 and 4 of Colossians http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0839/__P10M.HTM and get "wives obey your husbands" into context.  Not only the wife has obligations in a marriage.  Colossians 3 and 4 (not lengthy chapters) are all about relationships generally, not only the marital relationship.

May God richly bless those marriages and relationships where both parties are striving to live good lives, holy lives - and may The Good God richly bless and provide the necessary guides and assistances for those marriages and relationships in a mess and struggling. 

ec86bd95559cb856c2b1ba3270812dcc--quotes

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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little2add

The Bible passage also says 

submit to their husbands in everything. ... However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

so ...

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BarbaraTherese

Well said @little2add - not only the wife has very clear obligations in a marriage.

so...

... what happens if one party in a marital relationship does not strive to live up to the standards of a Catholic Christian and with an overtly stated absence of desire to do so, rather hostility.  And what if such a situation is affecting the children of the marriage.  What is the way forward for the other partner after the negative partner has categorically refused marriage guidance etc. and all efforts to repair a broken relationship of mutual love, caring and respect?

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little2add
6 minutes ago, BarbaraTherese said:

. for one

Both :sad: there can be no joy in a failed marriage  

how could there be.

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BarbaraTherese

My apologies, I meant that unhappiness is one result.  What was prime for me and my example was what led to that state of unhappiness - unhappiness was a by-product of other factors.  I guess that what I was hoping to lead to was the fact that life can get messy and outside boarders or The Law and what to do about it - in my example, what to do about the messy state I found my children and myself labouring in and that "wives obey your husband" is not applicable nor feasible as a generalisation in all instances.

We do need SDs and advisors who are willing to journey with a person in the messiness and then out of it, much I guess as a psychiatrist or psychologist etc. does with his or her patients.  A psychiatrist or therapist of some kind does not quote a law and that is that i.e. this way or the highway.  I do think too that we need Catholic communities, parishes, that do not gossip and point fingers.

I am very confident I am not the only person who has ever found their life turned upside down and messy - and with an ardent desire to somehow get the mess sorted out.........and it won't and isn't going to happen overnight.

The other thing is that when one is in a mess probably the perfect solution is impossible to the weak and faulted sinner involved - rather it becomes a journey, a step by step journey, out of the mess and then hopefully into a more positive, feasible and even more perfect way of life.  And we need educated people, spiritual people, willing to go on the journey with the person, wherever and however that journey for the sinner with Grace unfolds and takes the person, both of them actually.

My priest religious theologian SD and confessor accompanied me on a step by step lengthy journey and where it all began to fall into place, I have no idea really.  Close by my side at that time and through it all was a beloved Carmelite prioress I am still very close with today and she stayed close beside me through much no one else would I suspect, nor would I blame them one bit.

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Era Might

All our woe and misery because one woman refused to submit to her husband.

SANDWICH.jpg

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BarbaraTherese

What fascinates me about the Adam and Eve story is that it took the highly intelligent Satan to tempt and convince Eve, but only a woman to tempt and convince the man.

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CatherineM

As I often say, Eve hadn’t been created when Adam made his covenant with God. She wasn’t a party to the original contract. I could have gotten her off with a lesser penalty at the very least. 

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linate

the bible says men are to love her woman the way God loves his church, or something like that... so does that mean you could say the woman's obligation to submit only is required when the man fulfills his side of the obligation?

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havok579257
On 10/24/2017 at 6:19 PM, linate said:

the bible says men are to love her woman the way God loves his church, or something like that... so does that mean you could say the woman's obligation to submit only is required when the man fulfills his side of the obligation?

a woman's role of obligation is not dependent on a man fulfilling his role.  if a husband or wife does not fulfill their obligation to the other it does not mean the offended spouse gets out of their obligations.

 

women are called to be submit to their husbands.  men are called to love their wives as Christ loved the church.  Christ did everything for the church and even gave his life his flock.  he sacrificed himself for the love of his flock.  husbands should love their wives like Christ did the church and that means be willing to sacrifice their life for their wives.  their is no greater love a person can have for another when they willingly sacrifice themselves for another.  a husband is called to love his wife like this.

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Era Might
41 minutes ago, havok579257 said:

a woman's role of obligation is not dependent on a man fulfilling his role.  if a husband or wife does not fulfill their obligation to the other it does not mean the offended spouse gets out of their obligations.

 

women are called to be submit to their husbands.  men are called to love their wives as Christ loved the church.  Christ did everything for the church and even gave his life his flock.  he sacrificed himself for the love of his flock.  husbands should love their wives like Christ did the church and that means be willing to sacrifice their life for their wives.  their is no greater love a person can have for another when they willingly sacrifice themselves for another.  a husband is called to love his wife like this.

I think this idea of "Christ loving the church" gets reduced to an abstract, archetypal, symbolic Christ. We imagine Christ as "Christ," as a role, a symbol who dies for his people, the supreme symbol of sacrifice. But Christ as a real human being had a much more complicated love for the church (the disciples), and it often involved elevating women above men (such as when he disarmed the crowd who wanted to stone the woman taken in adultery, the supreme example of a "disobedient wife"). And the women who encountered Christ were often willful, like the woman who insisted on eating the scraps from his table like a dog, or Mary herself, who insisted on his turning water into wine.

I always say I believe in women more than men. Put a woman in a situation where she has to take care of her kids by herself, she gets it done. Put a man in the same situation...not saying there aren't men who get it done, but I'd bet on a woman over a man any day. Authority is a mark of formal power, which is always inferior to actual power. The president has formal power, but the people have actual power. Same with men.

But, everyone's different. There are men and women who just get along. I see a guy and his girlfriend walking their dogs every day, very nice and mild people, they seem like they get along well. Some men and women are more gendered, hierarchical. Whatever works. I don't think, in the real world, people sit around pondering whether who submits to whom. These things usually work themselves out...but religious types like to overthink things.

Edited by Era Might

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