CQM Blog: Concepts That Build Christ-Likeness

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Relationship Help | Husband Causes Spiritual Dehydration in Wife

kenDear (Husband),

I have concluded that the only way I might survive was to leave you, but I didn’t want to give up. I still had hope for us. Life Partners sounded like something that could really help. When we went to the conference I was stunned. I had never heard anyone describe so clearly how I’d been feeling as Ken did that weekend. I don’t know why you signed up with Christ Quest. I only knew this was our last hope. And now it is four years later. A few things have improved, I will admit that. But I feel even more brokenhearted and hopeless than before, so something is not working.

To give you a word picture, it is like Ken Nair found the only well in a vast desert. A well full with fresh cool water. It is a special kind of well. It has a sort of force field around it and only husbands can walk through the barrier to get to the well. But that’s okay because there is enough water for everyone and if the husband will go, even though he may have a long distance to walk, the water will still be cool and refreshing when he gets back to his wife. And when she is satisfied, he is able to bring water to all his children. He can only get a cup at a time, so he must do this every day. I have been in this desert my whole life, yet I have never had a cup of water from that well. My father could have given me some, but he did not know about the well. I have spent my entire life longing for that water. And now I am married to you and you know about the well. You can see it. But from where you stand, it only looks like a rock. I can smell the water. I see other wives receiving cups of water and am jealous. You think you can give me drinks from your cup without having to walk across the hot dry desert to get water. You think there must be an easier way. But there is nothing in your cup and you get angry with me because I am not satisfied. You are angry and frustrated, sorry you are burdened with such an unhappy, unreasonable woman. You think it would be easy to get the water if you had a nice happy wife. But when I pretend to be happy, you think, “see she doesn’t really need the water after all.” You think you were tricked. I looked like I was satisfied when you met me. And to a point you are right. Because when I was alone Jesus brought me water-the water only He gives to women who are alone with no husband. Although it is precious, it is not the same water, and God created us to crave the water from that well in the desert. Once she is married, her husband is given the responsibility of meeting her needs, and he must go to the well every day the rest of his life. I am thirsty. I am weary of being thirsty. I am so dry I can feel my spirit shriveling up inside me and I am sad.

I don’t know. Am I focusing on the symptoms and missing the real problems? Perhaps the real problems are too deep, too complex, too serious. I have suspected for a long time there is something you are trying to keep hidden from me. Is it that you have regretted marrying me all these years and don’t love me now? It is something I feel, but can’t put my finger on. Are you just trying to act the part of a good husband, because that’s what’s expected of you, without any feeling in your heart for it? Are you hoping that if you attend Christ Quest maybe you will learn enough of the behavior to get by? Could you think for a minute I would settle for that?

This has been going on for more than thirteen years. By last December I felt pretty empty and worthless. I had struggled with discouragement and failure for so long and I was at the end of my endurance. My body was exhausted from the continual heartache. I was tired of feeling totally responsible for the success of our marriage and yet being completely unable to make any improvement. It was time to step back and look at our relationship as it actually is and not as I imagine or want it to be. Now, it’s up to you! What are you going to do?