STOP BLAMING YOUR SPOUSE, CHECK YOURSELF: A man who was having a very serious problem with his marriage of 12 years visited his father to inform him about his decision to call it quits after he mandated his lawyer to file for divorce.
After listening to his son who was trying to convince him that divorce was the best solution to the pitiable state of his marriage, the father asked him, “Is divorce the will of God for your marriage?” and “Is divorce what you really need?”
The man replied that divorce is not the will of God for any marriage and that what he wants is peace, not really divorce. He sadly added, “I think divorce is the only thing that can give me the peace that I am looking for”.
I would have loved the marriage to remain intact if there was hope for it. But for this marriage, there is no hope”.
His father got up from his chair, went close to him, bent low to touch him as he was seated and told him in a very low but serious tone “There is hope if you do not lose it. Son, there is hope if you hang it on God; yes there is hope”.
The young man disagreed with his father and said, “No! Daddy, there is no hope. I have done everything for Dupe, to make her change. I kept malice, I rejected her food, I refused to make love with her, I have done virtually everything but to no avail. I am tired; yes daddy, I am tired.
Are you giving up so easily?” The father asked.
To this, the young man protested, I am not giving up so easily dad; I have been struggling and suffering for the past twelve years. Some drastic actions must be taken, if you don’t want me, dead. Dupe is driving me crazy.
He then burst into tears. The old man allowed him to sob for some time, before he knelt down beside him and asked the questions that turned that marriage around forever. He said, “Son, you have told me all the wrong doings of your wife, but you have not really told me any of yours. You have told me a lot of your wrong reactions to her misbehavior but Jide, have you ever considered the possibility that her behaviour may have something to do with you? Have you thought about the possibility that she might be reacting to some bottled-up anger, resentment, and bitterness? Have you considered the fact that she may need your help not your rejection? Have you forgotten that a friend in need is a friend indeed?”
When the old man saw that his words were “sinking” into his son, he paused and said, “Son, go back and nurture that young woman, go and be a blessing to her. I know you will have a new wife.
As he drove home that day deep in thought, Jide said he was ashamed of himself for being selfish, uncaring, unloving, unlovable, and a quitter. He said he then made up his mind to change himself instead of seeking to change his wife. He said he drove straight to a fast food joint, where he had been having his breakfast, lunch, and supper for sometime to avoid his wife’s meal, this time to buy something for his wife and himself. On getting home, he invited her to come and eat with him, she was so surprised but ate with him, though in silence.
The man said, from that time, he decided to make her happy, by little acts of thoughtfulness, care, attention, acts of consideration, patience, gifts, making supper ready for her without placing any demands on her or expecting anything in return. He did everything to promote peace, happiness, and well-being without worrying about her actions and reactions.
At first, Dupe was skeptical and suspicious of his new behaviour, but as he continued his positive interaction with her, coupled with prayers, she was taken by surprise and started responding positively. This encouraged the man to be more positive and the cycle continued like that until their marriage became better and stronger.
Most of the time we blame our spouses for the state of our marriage, we never bother to look inward to see where we have missed the road. Blame and criticism are two of the easiest things to do, but who will take the blame?
If 100 percent marriage is your desire, then you must become a blessing to your spouse and you must follow the path of blessedness. You must become less demanding, you must stop asking “what will you do for me?” But rather “what can I do for you?”
Let me ask you: are you a source of blessing or a curse to your wife or husband? Are you a plus or a minus? Sincerely between you and I, are you of a noble character at home? Do you think that your spouse should be solely blamed for the state of your marriage? Have you discovered areas where you need to do a “surgical operation” on your actions, reactions and inactions? Don’t you think you need to rise up to become a blessing to your mate?