When Bad Days Attack Who Are You Going To Listen To?
Every day is not filled with roses and kittens. Every once in a while we have a day that is filled entirely with thorns and pit bulls. These days happen, they are part of life. How you decide to handle them will have a lasting impact on your marriage.
For husbands the most difficult thorns are those that impact your potential to provide for your family. It could be an announcement about cut backs at work, a project gone bad, an overdue bill, or a sudden repair that drains the bank account. When a bad day hits your manhood hard, we cringe!
When these types of hits happen every man gets that feeling down in the pit of their stomach. I know all of you know what I’m talking about, but for the wives reading this let me explain. That one bill or failed project at work starts a mental snowball that goes something like this:
“That’s it, that project going bad means that I’m going to be fired, and if I’m fired I will never be able to find another job. I’m ruined, We are going to lose the house and I’ll go bankrupt. Then my wife will leave me and take the kids and I’ll end up sleeping in a van down by the river.”
Bad news has a way of starting an emotional snowball of awfulness pretty quickly. Even if we are able to stop this avalanche of self-doubt another dread quickly enters our minds. “I’m going to have to tell my wife”. Immediately after we remember this, a whisper of “You don’t want to worry her” enters our minds.
That message, “Don’t worry her” is a pretty powerful one. I’ve been there guys, I can remember driving home making arguments with myself a hand full of times. I would convince myself that everything would actually be better if I softened the blow by minimizing the reality or if I just didn’t tell her at all.
Somewhere back along the path to manhood guys were taught that, “real men don’t need help”. When tragedy struck Superman didn’t run to talk about it with Lois; he fixed the problem then later flew back to nonchalantly chat about it with her, “no big deal, sure our whole world could have crumbled, but don’t you worry your pretty little head about it, I fixed everything”.
That’s a real man right? Men figure it out, know the answer and fix the problem. Men don’t want to worry their family about it.
The One Man – or two become one man…
Superman mentality is a lie! We are not supposed to go it alone, to have it all figured out. I know that all of you know that already, but when bad news hits those old superman messages kick in loud and clear. You have to fight superman back with real vulnerability, something that many of us are not very good at.
- Your wife is strong enough to hear bad news.
- You will be stronger to face the bad news together.
- Being able to share your hurt and fear will stop your mental snowball from turning into a life altering avalanche.
I know it is hard to swallow your pride and open up about that failure, but one flesh does not only exist for the happy times. Becoming one flesh is how you need to approach all of your life together, roses and thorns.
Next time life tosses you a lemon don’t try to be a superman and make lemonade by yourself. Take a chance to share your snowball with your wife and see if you are able to take on the task of overcoming that challenge even better together! This is actually the real meaning of the verse so often quoted at weddings “a cord of three strands is not easily broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:12). God knew that in times of struggle working together, praying together, meeting the challenge together keeps us moving forward.
You may discover that you not over met the challenge together, but your marriage actually grew stronger as you lived in oneness through the tough times.