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Submission in Practice


Soldier of the One

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So how does wifely submission work in practice?

Is there anyone here who can shed a light on that, either from what they know or what they experienced (or both)?

For instance, how do you navigate a relationship which on the one hand is supposed to be intimate and loving yet fundamentally unequal?

How do you quarrel or negotiate tasks, boundaries and responsibilities?

How do you negotiate a marital intimacy for either spouse?

How are disagreements voiced and resolved?

What jurisdiction does a woman have? Up to what degree can a man veto his wife's decisions?

Thanks!

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Sure, I understand the theological underpinnngs of the system but I am really curious about how they actually live and experience it.

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the hard core ones the wife submits in everything including sex. it does not matter fi she is in the mod or not. if she does not agree with hubby she has to pray god changes his mind. if he does stupid things it's the same. There is no real negotiating really. though some say throwing tantrums is how the woman gets what she wants.

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the hard core ones the wife submits in everything including sex. it does not matter fi she is in the mod or not. if she does not agree with hubby she has to pray god changes his mind. if he does stupid things it's the same. There is no real negotiating really. though some say throwing tantrums is how the woman gets what she wants.

I've also heard of patriarchal relationships where the husband delegates the entire household to the wife, where she doesn't have to ask him if (for example) what kind of paper towels to buy, or what exactly to teach each kid on each day.

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Ma Maxwell once posted that she prays that Pa Maxwell remembers to order the pizza. I guess that is because reminding him or ordering it herself would not be submissive.

No wonder that this poor woman seems to be depressed.

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Like many other questions, it depends on the couple.

Note of interest regarding sex: In the Bible, what people refer to as the "woman's obligation" (to give it up, so to speak) is actually a *mutual* obligation, using the exact same wording for men and women. It is not a license for a man to have his way with his wife on demand. (1 corinthians 7, if you're interested) It is an encouragement for both people in the relationship to consider the other person and not make a habit of giving the cold shoulder. And it is directed first at the husband.

Many mainstream fundamentalists (Dobson, Family Life, et all) do teach submission but they also put a heavy obligation on men to obey the commands to them (which involves self-sacrificing love for their wife), and differentiate between an attitude of respect/submission and total, unquestioning subjection. The idea of separation or even divorce of a woman from an abusive man is not anathema to them, though they would encourage reconciliation if at all possible.

And then you do have those for whom submission means never questioning, never expressing disagreement, and needing permission to buy a certain brand of paper towels. :roll:

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if she does not agree with hubby she has to pray god changes his mind.

I've even heard of women praying that god will change their minds.

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I do. Well, not "change my mind", per se, but "Let me know if I'm in the wrong here"

I have no problem with disagreeing with my husband. But I have discovered that I'm not always right. :shock:

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Ma Maxwell once posted that she prays that Pa Maxwell remembers to order the pizza. I guess that is because reminding him or ordering it herself would not be submissive.

No wonder that this poor woman seems to be depressed.

Whoa - she can't even order pizza on her own? :icon-rolleyes: :icon-rolleyes: :angry-banghead: :angry-banghead:

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Among the fundies I know personally, the emphasis is really that each partner in a marriage should put the other above himself or herself. The maiin ways you see headship play out are that the women don't speak up much in co-ed church gatherings (though they will on occasion), and they aren't church elders/pastors. Also, the vast majority of married women don't work outside the home. However, the women tend to handle all the day to day running of the home while hubby is at work and the "submission" aspect only really seems to kick in if there's a big disagreement and then the man gets to cast the deciding vote.

The really hardcore stuff you mention has always been present, but is starting to crop up more and more, though. Scary.

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Well, I tend to be the submissive partner in relationships (I like to clarify this as, although I seem to fulfill the "submissive" wife role in the Bible - it's mainly because it is who I am naturally. I don't promote the lifestyle because I believe relationships are complex and everyone should do what works for them - which means that I would never tell my kids that they should submit or be the boss or anything).

In my first marriage when I tried the patriarchy way I was married to an abuser. I would do whatever he asked (although I would argue if I felt it was wrong - I would ultimately obey him), I would ask for forgiveness from him when he made me angry, I would allow him to go on whatever cockamanie path he felt like going in even if it meant we would be devastated financially. I would ask God to show me how I could serve him more. :handgestures-thumbdown:

My second relationship is a lot different. I tend to follow his lead in things, but if I disagree I argue with him and we work out either a compromise or he agrees with me or I agree with him - depending on the conversation. If I don't agree with him at all, I will do what I feel is right. I will ask him what he thinks about a lot of things - it drives him nuts - this may be because of my upbringing and earlier life-style, or I'm just naturally weird like that - I can't tell you which. He loves me a lot and does a lot of stuff for me. I feel - spoiled, and don't know how to deal with it. If I ask him for help, he usually does it happily. He'd never expect me to take the full load of the housework (because I have a career) and a lot of times actually does more than I do. Supposedly, this is what a real Christian marriage looks like. :roll: I can't say that such a thing is true - it's only how my marriage works and I'm still very much in love with my husband.

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The idea of separation or even divorce of a woman from an abusive man is not anathema to them, though they would encourage reconciliation if at all possible.

And therein lies the problem. It is not the place of anyone else to encourage a reconciliation between a couple. In fact, nobody but someone trained to deal with domestic violence should even be advising in this circumstance. Because in fundie land, we all know how "encouragement" works. It means that you have to submit further, and if you can't or won't, then you've sinned. And that kind of thinking is what gets women injured and killed.

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