How You May Be Betraying Your Wife

By Gary Thomas
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Every husband has inside information on his wife — a health issue, something from her past, a secret fear. We must hold that vulnerability as a sacred trust.

A friend of mine, who is a medical doctor, has held the beating heart of a living person in his hands. I can’t even imagine that kind of responsibility. But every husband has his wife’s “spiritual heart” beating in his hands every day. Our wives make themselves just as vulnerable spiritually and emotionally as my friend’s patients do physically. Every husband has inside information on his wife — a health issue, something from her past, a secret fear — information that could harm or humiliate her if shared indiscriminately. We must hold that vulnerability as a sacred trust.

Keeping her secrets

When your wife shares something personal with you, it’s your job to keep that information safe. Think of it this way: The offensive linemen for the Green Bay Packers need to know if quarterback Aaron Rodgers has an injury that could affect his ability to pass the ball. But telling the Steelers about it wouldn’t be in the Packers’ best interest. In the same way, your wife feels like she’s on your team, so she’s willing to be open with you. She trusts you not to share that information with people who may ridicule or harm her.

Betraying your wife’s trust isn’t just about sharing information, however; sometimes it’s about using that information against her. Imagine if Aaron Rodgers made a lineman so angry that he hit Rodgers exactly where Rodgers was wounded. That’s what a husband does when he uses his wife’s vulnerability against her during an argument.

Regaining her trust

When you blow it, out of anger or carelessness, your initial response may make the situation worse unless you immediately take responsibility: “I never should have shared that. There’s no excuse. I’m so sorry.” This should be your response even if you’re surprised your wife took offense. Don’t argue with her over whether she should feel exposed. If she feels exposed, she has been.

No guy I know would leave his laptop open with personal files on the screen and all his passwords on display at Starbucks while he takes a walk. Love your wife at least as much as you love yourself — respect her privacy as much as you respect your own.

Gary Thomas is the author of numerous books on marriage and family life, including his most recent, Cherish: The one word that changes everything for your marriage.

© 2016 by Gary Thomas. Used by permission.

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Learn How to Cherish your Spouse and Have a Deeper Connection

Why doesn’t my son listen to me? What does it mean to cherish your spouse? Couples who cherish each other understand that God created everyone different, and as a result they treasure the unique characteristics in their spouse. We want to help you do just that. Focus on the Family has created a free five-part video course called "Cherish Your Spouse". In this video series, Gary Thomas will help you have a deeper level of intimacy and connection with your spouse.
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About the Author

Gary Thomas

Gary Thomas is an international speaker and best-selling, award-winning author whose books include Sacred Marriage and Sacred Parenting. He has also written numerous articles for several prominent national magazines. Gary and his wife, Lisa, reside in Texas and have three children. You can learn more about Gary by visiting his website, www.garythomas.com.

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