Choosing between honoring my mother and submitting to my husband.

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by blackstarling, Feb 9, 2014.

  1. blackstarling

    blackstarling
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    My mother recently told me that she would take care of some generally cosmetic fixes on my car. (My passenger door was bent pretty bad and wouldn't open and there was rust on the car.) I didn't plan to do anything about it. I plan to replace the car in the next couple years, I don't have kids to take places, and when my husband and I go someplace together we have always taken his truck. So having an operating passenger door didn't mean much to me.

    Mom said that she had a friend who does body work that owes her some favors and that she would have him fix the door for me. I told her that we absolutely couldn't afford it, it was a frivolous and unnecessary fix, but she insisted she would take care of it.

    When arranging to pick the car up after it had been worked on I told my mom that the man had asked that we bring cash to pay him. She asked how much cash I had on me. I thought it was because she didn't want to have to stop at an ATM before going to meet the mechanic. When we arrived I found out that he had not only fixed the door, he had completely filled and smoothed the dents on the door, sanded down all the rust on the car, painted it, and cleaned the interior. Mom asked me to pay him $500 and said she would pay him whatever was left. I found out shortly thereafter that this wasn't a $500 that she would be returning to me.

    When we were alone I told her that if I had known I would be paying that I wouldn't have agreed to any of the services and that we couldn't afford the $500. It was money slated to go to bills in collections. She said that she was paying him much more than $500 and that it was a very costly service. If I had known she was going to invest that much herself, I also would have not allowed the services regardless of whether she could afford it. I reminded her that she had told me she would take care of the cost and told her that my husband and I were very unprepared to take on such a loss. She seemed a little remorseful for her decisions when she found out that we had bills in collections, but that was about it. She didn't say she'd give the money back, and I don't expect she will. In order to honor her, I feel that I shouldn't push any more than I have. I explained that she misled me which caused our money crisis to get that much deeper. She had all the facts. If she wanted to pay me back, or plan to do so in the future, she has those choices, but made no mention of wanting to make them.

    EDIT: It's worth noting that I paid the $500 out of $1000 that my mom had given me as a gift because she knew that we were having financial difficulty. So the money was readily available to spend, we had simply planned to spend it on something more important.

    My husband essentially wants me to demand the money back from her if that's what it takes. He says that it's my Biblical duty to obey him and that by not doing so, I'm disobeying God. My only answer to that was that it's a commandment to honor my parents and that trumps anything else. I can't force her to do anything no matter how I approach her. I've already presented my case to her. What more can I do without straining my relationship with her?

    He doesn't like how much influence my mom has on me, and is often very disrespectful in the way he talks about her when it's just the two of us in private. He often says that I should react to her in disrespectful ways when she takes advantage of me. She does take advantage of me from time to time, and it can get very frustrating, but I next-to-never lose my cool and say or do something disrespectful. Nothing she does is hurtful, it's often just a strain on my resources, or our family resources - most often it's time that she takes. She'll do things like ask if I'll go to the grocery store with her in the morning, but that trips turns into hitting every garage sale on the way home then going to get something to eat and stopping at a friends house and I get home five hours later. It's frustrating to me, but it's my mom, I don't say anything. However it infuriates my husband. He says that even though she's not putting him out, he hates that she so nonchalantly disregards what I want.

    Should I try to coerce my mom into returning the money because my husband told me to? Should I consider this type of behavior dishonorable to her or not? If it's not an issue of honoring her then I certainly should do what my husband asks of me if it doesn't otherwise contradict scripture right? (As a side question, what am I supposed to do if something my husband tells me to do DOES contradict scripture??)

    Since I've already typed this much, I might as well also note that my husband is always upset that I don't defer to his judgement. He's not the spiritual head of our household that he's supposed to be. He knows very little about the Bible. He says that he wouldn't go to church if it wasn't for me. At this point I think we may be unevenly yoked and I'm concerned for his salvation. But I don't know if that changes whether or not I'm supposed to do ask he says because he's still my husband.
     
    #1 blackstarling, Feb 9, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 9, 2014
  2. prophet

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    1Pe 3:1-6
    Chapter 3
    1 Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;
    2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.
    3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;
    4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
    5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:
    6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord:whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.
     
  3. blackstarling

    blackstarling
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    That doesn't help me. I have a Bible. A Bible that also, in one of only 10 commandments, says "Honour thy father and thy mother..." I'm not asking whether I'm supposed to obey my husband. I'm asking what to do. Copying and pasting what I've already read adds no additional insight.
     
  4. prophet

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    I'm sorry, but I wouldn't dare offer advice to another man's wife, only scripture.

    I hope that you find a solution that strengthens your marriage.

    Luk 14:26
    26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
     
  5. blackstarling

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    You won't offer advice, but you'll post verses that seem to contradict each other? Why is advice off the table, but confusion isn't? James 1:8 says that double minded man is unstable in all ways. You don't want to suggest a route for me to take because that's not your place, but sending me back to my husband unstable in all ways seemed proper? If you can't be a help, please don't be a hinderance.
     
  6. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    With a little fear of rebuke I offer this suggestion. When you married your sphere of authority changed from your parents to your husband. While you must always honour your mom that doesn't mean you must obey her. I have 5 adult children out of the home. While they don't always like what I suggest or advise, they never dishonour me. You possibly cannot 'demand' the money back, but you can ask, in humility, expressing your husband's concerns. You may even have to say that your husband has expressed that he has asked you to insist that the money be returned.

    When you have done that you can tell your husband that there is nothing more you can do. You cant, for example, honourably take your mother to court.

    Don't do anything that will destroy your relationship to your mother. Honouring is an attitude, and you can disagree and express issues without dishonouring.

    All the all day shopping trips it is easy - you simply tell you mom that your husband does not like it when you are out all day. He preferences clearly come first in that manner.

    It sounds like you mom doesn't want to let you go. She must realise that she has to.

    If the antagonistic attitude you have thus far expressed in this thread is an indication of your character and not just frustration taking the right attitude toward mom and husband will be tough. Pray for wisdom, love both individuals, then do what is right - submit to your husband. He is not asking your to do anything wrong.
     
    #6 NaasPreacher (C4K), Feb 9, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 9, 2014
  7. blackstarling

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    Your suggestion, simple and discerning, is the kind of content I hoped and expected to find here. Thank you.

    If someone approaches you with a map asking you to show them the best route to their destination, giving them another copy of the map doesn't do any good. Turning the map upside down is just silly. They're clearly in unfamiliar territory and presenting the same information from another angle is confounding. You didn't change any of the information they already have and the new perspective just contorts their vision.

    Eph 4:29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
     
  8. Jkdbuck76

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    You'll have to stand your ground with your Mom. If I may, it sounds like you told her from the get-go "Mom, I DON'T have any extra money for cosmetic repairs" and while she might have heard it, she really didn't comprehend. I have the same problem with my own father and I've had to be VERY BLUNT with him from time to time....not rude, but I've had to say "Dad, did you HEAR what I just said?"

    Another thing: I'm sure your husband doesn't mind being "the bad guy". In other words, I don't think he's going to mind if you tell your Mom"sorry, Mom. Can't fly to Cozumel with you this weekend....hubby won't let me." I'm not trying to be snarky at all, I'm just trying to give you a hypothetical example.

    I hope I've been some sort of help. The Lord may He strengthen your family.
     
  9. preacher4truth

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    You two became one flesh when you got married. Your husband has the authority in this place but his anger needs tempered, so pray.

    Your mother has sinned and she deceived you. I know that is a difficult place but it needs to be addressed in Christian love and in Biblical authority with gentleness. Pray that God would open the right opportunity and/or that she would own up on her own via your prayers and conviction.
     
  10. Don

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    Those verses didn't contradict; if you go back and read them again, they actually complement each other. And they directly address your relationship question about your husband and your mother.
     
  11. Zenas

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    Your mother probably intended to pay for the repairs, at least until she learned how much they would cost. Even then, she believed she was paying for them because she had just given you $1,000 that you had not yet spent. Your mother doesn't realize that a gift with no strings attached becomes your property. I sense that your mother is a little embarrassed that her adult daughter drives a car with a smashed passenger door. Conclusion: If the facts are as you stated, you have every right to ask your mother for the $500 and it would not be a violation of the 5th Commandment. Even better, however, would be for your husband to ask for the money since he is the one who is upset with her.

    Finally, it wouldn't hurt to sit down with your husband and assure him you want to be a Godly obedient wife, but that he also has duties as a husband, the most prominent being to love you as Christ loves His church.
     
  12. Scarlett O.

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    Have your husband and mother always treated you like this - like doormat?

    [1] Grow a spine. I mean that sincerely. If you don't - you won't be able to do [2] and [3].

    [2] Your mother: Let me tell you something. Odds are - this isn't about you and your mother. In part - it seems to be about your mother and your husband. You said, in essence, he doesn't like her too much. I'll bet the feeling is mutual.

    Go to your mother and sit down with her (in person and after you grow the spine) and tell her something like this:

    "Hey Mom, can I talk to you? I want to tell you how much I love you and respect you. You've been a good mother. Do you remember ... (give her a couple of meaningful things she's done for you that you truly appreciate). Can I tell you that sometimes I feel hurt by you when you aren't always honest with me and seem to disrespect my husband and marriage? I need to tell you that starting today - I am my own woman and I will allow nothing to impede my marriage and my relationship with my husband. This doesn't take away my love for you nor my respect for you at all. What do you think about what I'm saying."

    Prepare for her to be defensive.

    Reassure her of your love and respect for her, but DO NOT BACK DOWN.

    Speak softly and kindly. Touch her. Do not back down.


    [3] Your husband: Find a good time and a good place. Not when just come home from work and not in the bedroom.

    Say to him something like this:

    "Hey, Baby. I need to talk to you. Have I ever told you why I married you?(Give him the good reasons why) Have I ever told you what I think your strengths as a man are? (List them - even if there's only one - and be honest). I need to tell you that sometimes when you talk to me and tell me that I had better obey you or I am in defiance of the scriptures that this hurts me more than you will ever know. (Tell him how it make you feel - i.e. like a dog or like a servant or unloved, disrespected, .... be honest whatever the feelings are).

    Speak gently and kindly.

    "Baby, I'm going to start a daily prayer routine of praying that you will come to understand what I'm saying and understand that what I'm telling you will never undo the love and respect I have for you.

    Starting today, I'm working on growing into my own person. I'm still under your protective and loving leadership - but I cannot allow you to talk to me like that anymore.

    I won't fuss at you or belittle you, but I will gently tell you when you hurt me.

    If I do anything to hurt you - please tell me. I want us to grow together into the husband and wife that God wants us to be.

    I love you. (Speak with loving kindness. Touch him. Do NOT back down.)

    Then start that prayer routine - because it's going to take time for him to grow out of this. And he, like your mother, will be defensive.

    Do not back down.
     
    #12 Scarlett O., Feb 9, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2014
  13. go2church

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    Quit taking money from your mother. It clearly comes with strings you are not prepared to unwind.

    The whole, because I'm your husband, submit to me thing is pure nonsense. If he wants the money back, go and ask himself. Submit indeed, especially it seems, when it means you go through the door first!

    Again, quit taking money from your mother.
     
  14. HAMel

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    Great advice, Scarlett O. !!! :thumbsup:

    blackstarling, you are with husband and mother. In the middle of a situation like this you should not be servant to either as you're an individual and not deserving to have to pick between the two.

    What's done is done so move on.
     
  15. just-want-peace

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    Ditto on all this post!!!

    Just keep in mind that "to honor", and "obey", DOES NOT mean you are just a whipping boy (er girl) for what ever the object of your focus deems suitable.

    As others have said, should your mom ever want to give you any more money, have a very clear understanding UP FRONT before accepting, whether there are strings attached, so then you will know just how to respond to the "gift" that may be nothing more than a bribe or a tether of control.

    If there is a problem with your mom giving and later wanting some control, stop accepting. May hurt for the short term, but far better in the long run!!!!:BangHead:
     
  16. blackstarling

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    This makes a lot of sense to me and made me realized I -haven't- prayed about it yet. Not outside of a "Lord I wish it wasn't like this" sort of thought process.

    My mom used to be an alcoholic to the point that she was not only deteriorating her insides, she was accidentally injuring herself on a regular basis. We were all waiting for the call that told us she'd finally did herself in.

    One time she was so drunk at an airport that I was told she wouldn't be allowed to fly. Eventually I convinced a supervisor that I would take care of her. During a layover hours later I spoke up when she was going to order more booze. I spoke very gently, expressing my love for her with tears in my eyes. I didn't let her dissuade me from the conversation. For the rest of the trip she cried into the travel blanket I'd brought. Anyone who sat within five seats of her or who approached her asking if everything was alright was told that her daughter (pointing at me) no longer loved her and a slew of other misdirecting, hurtful, scarring words.

    The moral of the story is: defensive doesn't even begin to describe what my mom becomes when she thinks you think she's wrong. If you don't accept her justification she'll simply state that you're clearly wrong. If you continue she'll literally put her hand up and start making noises until you stop. If you continue at this point she'll bring the tears. So if it comes down to me being uncomfortable with something and making my mom cry, crocodile tears or not, I'd rather be uncomfortable. I just don't know how to enact change without causing a lot of pain in the process. If she doesn't want to change should I be forcing the issue?

    It is very much about the two of them. He doesn't dislike her and they do get along, but he despises her lack of consideration. Even though what she does usually doesn't affect him, he gets pretty livid when he sees her taking advantage of me or not asking whether her plans are impeding on my own. When he's angry he's very emotionally charged and says some really horrible things. What he says about her when he's angry isn't usually what he truly thinks about her, it's just his emotions getting the better of him. But the base for these awful ideas is the same - that he thinks she's wrong and it bothers him on every level.

    The feeling isn't mutual and I don't know why. Maybe because I see the tremendous progress she's made in her life since being an alcoholic and I'm hoping that her journey isn't yet over. Maybe the changes I'm hoping to see in her are yet to come. She needed to address what was killing her first.

    For reasons unrelated to the topic this has been my approach with my husband for the past six or eight months. It doesn't seem to change much though. I can say that I can't allow him to treat me a certain way, but there's no "or else" for me to fall back on. I say I can't allow it, he does it, and I just trudge on. I -had- an "or else" which was "or else I'm not staying her tonight." But that became too problematic. I was either advertising our private life by asking a friend if I could stay with them or I was sleeping in my chair at work. The only person it hurt was me and my work suffered on the following days.

    The obvious answer was there the whole time and I'm embarrassed to say I'd since ignored it. I need to pray about it. Do this first, then hopefully be blessed with the words to say to the both of them.
     
  17. blackstarling

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    This makes a lot of sense to me as well.

    I really appreciate the sensible solutions you guys are presenting. Sometimes it's hard to see straight when you're in a pickle. Just need a friend to point you in the right direction.
     
  18. annsni

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    Notice it says "honor" - not obey. You do not need to obey your parents and at times, we need to realize that we are not under their authority or command. What your mother did was wrong and I would tell her that you cannot trust her anymore because she deceived you into doing what she wanted to do.

    No where in the Bible are we told to obey our parents forever over the authority of our husband. It's just not there. You have left your father and mother and now are one flesh with your husband. It is HE that you are to obey, not your mother.

    I'm sorry that you're dealing with this but you are absolutely putting your mother above your husband which is not loving, honoring or respecting your husband - OR submitting to him. That's the bigger issue here.
     
  19. Zaac

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    He's the husband. Why doesn't HE ask for the money back and keep his wife out of it?
     
  20. annsni

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    Because the transaction was between the wife and mother. She's already in it.
     

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