Tolu…..My husband won’t lead and I don’t know why? I got an email from TW reader and this was a question she wanted me to answer.
A husband’s authority in marriage is unequivocally bestowed on them by God. Challenging this authority may bring about discord in a conjugal relationship. A wife with many marital years under your belt will relate to what I am talking about. As a result of this authority, husbands are supposed to be responsible and accountable for decisions that are made in their sphere of authority. To now connect AUTHORITY with LEADERSHIP…… these two words are totally different.
Once, I told my oldest daughter Tata to be in charge of her sisters while I was busy doing something at home. While I was busy, Tata went to read her book and did not pay attention to her baby sister who later messed up the family room. Looking at this little playout, Tata was given the authority to be in charge (like husbands are given the authority by God to lead their homes), but at the time she needed to exercise authority and take the initiative (i.e. act as a leader) to control the sister, she did not. My point… just because husbands are given authority by God does not mean they will know how or when to use it to lead. Leadership skills need to be learned most of the time.
Some factors that may be responsible for not taking up the leadership mantle in his home:
- PASSIVE PERSONALITY- these type of people could not just be bothered about decisions.
- UPBRINGING- no good father role model to imitate when growing up
- MARRIAGE BUILT ON A WEAK FOUNDATION- wrong marriage foundation principles
- OTHER UNDERLYING FAMILY DYNAMICS- example is if there is a discord between husband and wife.
What you can do as a wife……..
#1. COMMUNICATE AT THE RIGHT MOMENT, USING THE RIGHT TONE, VOICE AND BODY LANGUAGE
Know your request (finances, education, house chores etc.), then approach him. Be careful on how you table your matter because mode of communication is key here. If not properly articulated using the right tone, right voice, right body language and at the right moment, it can be misconstrued and this can be counterproductive. Communication is an art that we have to learn at times. Especially when you are speaking to someone in a position of authority like husbands are. Tread softly and approach in a subtle manner. Naturally, I am a very passionate woman and this passion trickles into almost everything I do including my speech. I learned over the years to articulate my thoughts before approaching my husband. When I counsel, people tend to laugh when I tell them that I sometimes have a list of agenda of the things I want to discuss prior to the meeting.
#2. REQUEST FOR HIS HELP BY SHARING YOUR WEAKNESS
Everyone likes to feel important, relevant and needed. Approach him (do this when you are in the best of mood 😉 ….. for example and this is me talking to my husband……“Baiby, I have tried multiple times to fix this chair, I can’t just get it done, can you please assist?” Most of the time I get a response like “really baiby, let me see” and BAM! He takes over. It’s the end that justifies the means right? 😉
#3. ARE YOU THE AGGRESSIVE ONE IN THE RELATIONSHIP? DOWN PLAY YOUR PERSONALITY A LITTLE
If you are like me, you want to take it easy. Maybe he is not even passive after all. Maybe you need to check yourself a little bit. Maybe your pace is actually a little too fast and you need to take a breather. Take a step back and allow him to take the wheels. Maybe you don’t need to correct him or point out to him what he did not do well. The list goes on and on. Aggressive people tend to want to take charge of every situation and this can work against a woman in marriage if not properly managed. Please do not get me wrong, (positive) aggression is a good quality if it can be tamed so that it only surfaces when the situation requires it. Hold your tongue a little if you have to. Allow him to make that decision. If he makes a mistake, believe me, he will learn and history will not repeat itself. If you think the wrong decision might have a near fatal effect on the marriage, use the approach I suggested in #1 and let him know the consequences. If you have to seek counsel, please do.
#4. ACKNOWLEDGE HIS HARDWORK- PRAISE HIM IF YOU HAVE TO
I don’t praise myself…..but gosh I am good at this. “Baiby…..wow look at how much work you did on the lawn…or OMG! You cleared all that snow? You deserve a hot cup of chocolate drink……” accompany this with some TLC. 😉 It works wonders….everybody likes to be pampered. You can imagine doing all that cajoling to get him to do that repair work and finally he gets it done and you don’t acknowledge or praise him? Of course he will think twice before he chips in again. My point is……..be grateful.
Dealing with a husband who will not take the lead on important issues could be very frustrating. Don’t forget to communicate with your husband but please do it with utmost wisdom. I will enjoin you to be patient, be very prayerful and tactically address the issue. May God continue to build our marriages.
Now it’s your turn to share your words of advice…….drop a line in the reply button below…..Looking forward to your comments….. 🙂
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