Have you ever tried to keep a secret from yourself? “I’m going to eat this extra dessert, I just won’t tell myself in the morning!” If only that worked, right! We can not turn off our brains in order to keep something secret from ourselves, but I know many men who regularly turn off their one flesh connection to keep secrets from their wife. If it is not possible to keep a secret from ourselves, then why would you keep a secret from your wife who you are supposed to be one flesh with?
Obviously this view of marriage holds tightly to God’s view of marriage as One Flesh. Kate wrote previously in “Are We Two or One? that we don’t believe that being one stops us from being individuals, but marriage is intended to dramatically change and grow those two individuals to become like one.
I recently read an advice article that suggested that wives should never go into their husband’s email account, and visa versa. I’m not going to jump into the right a wrong about snooping, but I want to challenge husbands about why they need a place of privacy, a place to keep secrets.
Break for a quick definition. Secrets are those things that you don’t intend on telling your wife. Surprises are things that you are holding back because the end result will be an excited happy wife (christmas presents, trips, dinner plans together). Surprises are great in marriage, secrets are not.
There are many guys I talk to that would cringe if their wife started looking at their emails, or text messages. Lets say your wife needed a phone number you call regularly, would you care If your wife would picked up your phone and flipped through your recent calls list? Is that an invasion of privacy?
Kate and I work hard to not have any secrets between us. We both have individual email accounts but we both regularly go into each others, not for snooping, not for checking, but just as a matter of course. (i.e Kate checked the time of an event that was in an email someone had sent to my email.)
If you are having the thoughts of “that’s an invasion of privacy” or “I need my space” then I would challenge you to talk a long hard look at those thoughts. Why do you need that privacy? Why do you need space? I think many guys were conditioned to seek this privacy when they were teens, wanted to hide things from their parents. Teen boys regularly keep behaviors, thoughts, and feelings away from their parents as they transition from being completely dependent on mom and dad to being completely independent. This is a natural transition. But guys . . . we are supposed to be working on making the opposite transition with our wives. We are to leave our father and mother and becoming one flesh with our wife! The secrets we trained ourselves to keep from our mothers are simply dividing us from a connection with our wife.
I know that this is going to spark some disagreements, and I encourage you to leave a comment. I would love to know if you agree or disagree and why! I’m looking forward to a good debate in the comments!