The playground taught me the biggest lie of all time. “Sticks and Stones can break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” I don’t know who came up with this line, but there isn’t an ounce of truth in it.
I wish everyone learned that lesson when they were kids on the playground. Unfortunately, far too many husbands missed it and so years later the same mouth they use to kiss their wife they use to hurt her too.
In The Heat of the Moment
“The argument is happening, the emotions are hot, and the words just start flying.” That is how many men “excuse” the fact that they called their wife a b***h, or other horrible words.
When I wrote “Delete the D Word” I encouraged couples to get rid of the word divorce from their argument vocabulary. I said people use the word “Divorce” like an argument highlighter, they use it to bring attention to the point that they are hurting.
I believe the men use the B word in a similar way for a different emotion. Rather than hurting, calling your wife a “B” is often a way to gain, or attempt to gain power.
Words Don’t Give Power
Saying that word, stops things in its tracks (or at least it once did). It forces your voice back on top in the argument, in a very unhealthy way. It might end arguments, it might even get you your way, but it is a horrible way to tell your wife you are feeling powerless.
Cursing your wife is not leading, it is dictating. You are not powerful by insulting anymore then the bully on the playground was powerful. They may get their way, they might get your swing, but they never gain your trust or love.
Never bully your wife. The insults do more to highlight your own weakness, powerlessness, and failing.
Heal the Wounds
I’ll admit this is not a struggle I have ever had, I learned this lesson on the playground very well. However, I’ve worked with many men who really wrestle controlling their tongue when they get angry.
The tongue runs wild, a wanton killer. With our tongues we bless God our Father; with the same tongues we curse the very men and women he made in his image. Curses and blessings out of the same mouth!
My friends, this can’t go on. A spring doesn’t gush fresh water one day and brackish the next, does it? Apple trees don’t bear strawberries, do they? Raspberry bushes don’t bear apples, do they? You’re not going to dip into a polluted mud hole and get a cup of clear, cool water, are you?
(James 3: 7-12 msg)
If you struggle in this way, I know that you would like to believe that what is said in the heat of the moment doesn’t count, but that simply isn’t true. Those words cut like a knife. The wound is deep and not quickly healed.
If you have ever called your wife these names or hurled insults at her in anger then you need to specifically ask for her forgiveness for this wound. That doesn’t mean you get to just say, “Sorry for calling you a b last night”.
You need to go beyond the sorry and ask forgiveness. Recognize the wound that the words cause and try something more like, “I know when I said those hurtful words I hurt you. I should have never done that, please forgive me. I will try my hardest never to do that again.”
If you have wrestled with this, why do you think you fall into the trap of using insults and calling names?
If you have stopped, how were you able to? Let us know in the comments!