Characteristics of a Distressed Marriage (3)

4. The Role-Confused Marriage

This kind of marriage is one where the partners fail to recognise and/or respond to their God-given roles.

Failure of the husband to provide responsible leadership:

  • He is not a spiritual leader. He is not financially responsible.
  • He refuses to make decisions.
  • He doesn’t seek to solve problems.
  • He neglects his wife emotionally.
  • He always gives in to her demands.
  • He is not honest about his desires and needs.

Failure of the wife to have a submissive spirit:

  • She does not have a gentle spirit.
  • She tries to control her husband.
  • She becomes involved in power struggles.
  • She stubbornly holds to her opinions.
  • She withdraws from him emotionally.
  • She is bitter and sarcastic.
  • She seeks revenge for not feeling loved.

God’s order is for the husband to feel significant through providing for his family and receiving the respectful love of his wife. He fills her need for security through love, acceptance, sensitivity to her needs and unselfish commitment to their marriage.

“Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour.… Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” (Ephesians 5:22–23, 25)