This is the first part of a commentary on the "Love And Respect" dvd series concerning marriage. I am starting with disc two because I borrowed the dvds from a friend and someone else has the first one.
First, let's start with the title. Series speaker Emerson Eggerichs says that, basically the key thing for a married man to remember is to love his wife and the key thing for a married woman to remember is to respect her husband. Aren't both elements required by both partners? (He addresses this on another disc but not to my satisfaction.)
In this session, Emerson's wife Sarah takes the stage.
"Did I behave disunloving?" Disunloving?! What kind of a word is that?
"Sometimes when women tell you about a problem, they want you to offer a solution. Other times, they just want you to listen." My biggest problem is when they come to you wanting a solution but they haven't acted on the solution you offered the previous fifty times they came to you with the same problem.
"Husbands, when you're listening to your wives, you should repeat bits of what they're saying so they know you're listening." If someone were doing that when I was talking to them, I would think they weren't really listening but instead making a great show of pretending to listen.
"Emerson told me, "Sarah, I could never do your job." Indeed, being a mother is the hardest job in the world. Unfortunately, too many Christian sources like to portray it as just baking cookies. One of the reasons I believe the feminist movement got as big as it did was the lack of appreciation men had for what women did in the home.
"Men, you should always where your wedding ring." The wedding ring is a pagan symbol partially having it's roots in the ancient Egyptian superstition that the vein in the ring finger led directly to the heart. Christian couples thinking of getting engaged or married should seek some other piece of jewelry or alternative object as a means of signifying their union. Better yet, why not just live out one's vows to signify taking this person as your spouse.
If it is a point of contention among already married couples, it is not one of the weightier matters.
"Wives need to affirm their husband's desire to bring home the bacon. Men have a desire to guard and protect." Actually, in our culture, this is becoming increasingly less so. There is an ever-growing population of that breed of male known as the mooque. This is a lazy male personage who is not interested in being the provider. He does not care about fixing things or even learning to drive. He is a total whimp who always needs to rely on his wife for comfort, solace, protection, and strength.
"Have "shoulder to shoulder" time with your husband where you don't talk." In the sixties, the hippies would have "be-ins." They would lie together in a park or some other place and just, well, be. Couples desperately need to have times where they just lie down and enjoy the fact that they live and move and have there being. They need to take time to appreciate the essence of life and existence.
No wonder Sarah Eggerichs' son said "nothing" when she asked him what he learned in school that day. It's the public school system!
"When it comes to sexuality, women need to respond to there partners." Definitely. When you're lying on the bed putting your all into the act of intercourse (and believe me, ladies, it takes a great deal of efert (or that's what I've heard)), to have a woman lie there and do absolutely nothing really deflates us. This encourages adultery because the man thinks, "Well, she obviously doesn't appreciate this; I'll go find someone who does." Remember, ladies, you can move, too. And, if you actively participate in acts of intimacy, the increase in pleasure will be a pleasant and exciting reward.
The denial of female sexuality in the church is a false, stupid, outdated, and harmful way of thinking. Not realizing women like sex just as much as men, (something we are now just learning,) has contributed to the dissolution of many marriages.
"Women should look presentable when their husband comes home from work." An article from the fifties that appeared in "Good Housekeeping" says much the same thing. Women should look good when they greet their man at the door when he comes home from a hard day of work, notwithstanding there are men who are massively turned on by the look of a woman who's been working in the garden and by her natural body odour.
"Women should give their husbands sex often because (and this is a direct bloody quote here) it takes so little time and makes them so happy." This ventures into the territory of a dangerous idea in Christian circles when it comes to this topic. The belief exists that women have lower sexuality than men. This is a dangerous, 19th-century idea. This also corresponds with the other Victorian idea alluded to above in the paragraph about sexual response. It seems their might also be the antiquated teaching from Christian mothers to their daughters that when it comes to sex, "You're not expected to like it. Just lie back and take it."
The truth is, women like sex just as much as men.
Ladies, if you're attitude toward sex is that it's something dirty or "Don't like it, just lie back and let it happen" I would seriously advise you to re-evaluate your thinking on this topic.