About Paul

December 20, 2008

About the ordinary man behind The Generous Husband

All the boring details about me can be found in my bio, and information about this blog can be found at about this blog. Also see Answers to a few common questions

Here’s what you should know about me:

  1. I am very passionate about marriage.
  2. I am very upset at what passes as “a good marriage” in our society today.
  3. My marriage is awesome and getting better.
  4. The above was not always true.
  5. No matter how good or bad your marriage is today, it can be better.
  6. As a result of all of the above, I can not stop myself from doing all I can to see marriages get better. I long to see marriages healing and growing.

I am far from perfect, and I don’t have all the answers for myself, much less for anyone else. However, I’ve learned a good deal along the way, I study marriage and sexuality daily, and I do have things of value to share.

7 comments
SteveEricStamm
SteveEricStamm

Paul, 

I enjoyed your post on Ultimatums. I saw a typo in the first bulleted point "Ultimatums should never be self-serving. The tricking" I think ought to be "Ultimatums should never be self-serving. The tricky " :) 

Thanks for all you do,

Steve

Heather
Heather

This is a tough one. From a female perspective, I love to be complimented on attributes both physical and those of the mind. Are you seeing through your dismay to offer her compliments on the things you do love about her? I am not trying to place the burden on you, but we take a vow " in sickness and in health" for a reason. She is sick. In an emotional sense of course. She is expressing that she doesn't love and respect herself. How she got there I do not know but your job is to help her regain self respect, love of self.... Hate to sound cliche but we can't love others if we do not love ourselves. Take her shopping and encourage her to buy a complete outfit that appeals to you. Something casual, not difficult to put on. Don't leave any loose ends like buy the shirt, jeans or skirt, shoes and earings. If she doesn't wear heels routinely buy flats. Help her to regain her respect and beauty. Itch will be dificult getting her to even try if she's really low so compliments may have to start prior to a shopping spree. Draw her a bath and scrub her back for her. Wash her hair. Its sensual and says shes worth your time and effort. Place a simple flower on a marriage bed with fresh sheets. Bring home a dinner for the two of you. If you have children send them to a sitter and set the scene right to take these steps. It's a long process to regain your self. I've been there. My husband and I are now sharing the most gratifying time of our marriage together.... So it is worth it. Most important... Ommunicate! Good luck

ryan
ryan

I am looking for some advice that you might be able to help me with. I have a friend that he and his wife every year go to nudiest resorts. We used to be good friends with this couple I was even in a bible study called Every Mans Battle and I thought that might have changed his thinkning but it didn't. I have already confronted him about it in the past and I thought he would have changed but this is not the case. I have read Mathew 18 :15 over and over and I feel I need to confront him again. Do you know of any verses that I can show him that will help me confront him. I don;t understand how he thinks it is ok and that it is nothing sexual about it. How can you justify this? Seeing a naked women and not being sexually stimulated. Thanks

Arthur Krebbs
Arthur Krebbs

Sorry. There was a major glitch in my earlier comment. Let me restate it. Could you write a blog offering advice on how to deal with a wife who does not seem to care about her appearance? I have grown numb to my wife's sexual indifference, but it would be nice if she could make an effort to look nice when we go out in public. I'm talking about wearing the same ratty jeans and threadbare sweater she's had on all day long when we go to a Christmas party. If I mention it, she'll tell me how tired she is and how much extra trouble it is to change. It all just shouts to me that she takes me for granted and considers it completely unnecessary to continue to attract me. I've heard husbands complain that their wives have become too "comfortable" in the marriage. Comfortable? She's practically comatose.

Shannon Smith
Shannon Smith

Hi, on your main page, "constraint" is misspelled as "contraint" in the title that says Is your marriage a problem or a contraint. Thanks

Phoenix3000
Phoenix3000

@Arthur Krebbs 

Unfortunately, many husbands also fall into the "comatose" category. I'd venture to say that many guys don't care about fashion and really don't know how to dress either (many women also neglected to learn this skill during their lifetime). 

Humans in general get sloppy and lazy. Both genders are equally guilty of this charge. Once the chase of the dating process is over and the capture is complete, we are not as concerned about maintaining the same standards of grooming and courting. Our spouse is ours. Finally! Then bills, work, children, homework, stress, etc. come in to steal our attention and time. Especially our energy! 

Your wife says she is tired a lot...perhaps she does not have the energy to care anymore. You must make sure you are doing what you can at home to help out equally with the domestic chores and children. Even a stay-at-home mother or father needs help from the working spouse. Watching children and taking care of all the chores are unpaid labor and very draining physically and mentally. Being a housekeeper/cook and nanny/mentor/tutor would cost a lot of money if you had to pay for it. These roles are two careers wrapped into one unpaid and under-appreciated role. If she is also working at a career, then it is even more important make sure that the domestic chores and child-rearing duties are split as evenly as possible between the two of you. Then she will have more time to pay attention to you and more energy to devote in doing so.

Women and some men are often subject to the Double Duty/Second Shift dilemma. Her energy may be taken up by this problem. You need to talk to your wife and find out why she is tired all the time. There could be a medical problem or depression/self-esteem issues as possible root causes for her lack of energy. Check out the concepts and solutions:


--"Double burden is a term describing the workload of men and women who work to earn money, but also have responsibility for unpaid, domestic labor.[1] This phenomenon is also known as the "The Second Shift" as in Arlie Hochschild's book of the same name.[2] In heterosexual couples where both partners have paid jobs, women often spend significantly more time on household chores and caring work, such as childrearing or caring for the sick, than men. This outcome is determined in large part by traditional gender roles that have been accepted by society over time. Labor market constraints also play a role in determining who does the bulk of unpaid work.

Due to an increase in the number of women participating in the labor market, efforts have been made document the effects of this double burden on couples placed in such situations.[3] Many studies have been done tracing the effects of the gendered division of labor and in most cases there was a notable difference between the time men and women contribute to unpaid labor."--http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_burden

--"The term double burden arises from the fact that many men and women currently are responsible for both domestic labor and paid labor. However, due to the thinking that a woman's time spent in domestic work is more valuable than a woman's time spent doing paid work, and that a man's time spent doing paid work is more valuable than a man's time spent doing domestic work, there is the issue of women having to do a large amount of both paid and unpaid work, leading to the double burden.[4] Some alternative terms for double burden include : double day, second shift, and double duty."--http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_burden

--"Neil Chethik wrote a book called, "VoiceMale: What Husbands Really Think About Their Marriages, Their Wives, Sex, Housework and Commitment." You might think that after writing a title that long, Chethik didn't have any energy or words left. But he did. Along with the University of Kentucky Research Center, Chethik's study with 300 American husbands found that housework was very important in marriages. Wives were less likely to have affairs, couples were less likely to consider separation or divorce, and couples were more likely to say they were happily married if the husband did more chores than in other marriages.

Another gender expert, Michael Gurian believes this is so because it's such a pleasant surprise when men do more around the house than expected. These experts aren't saying that women are consciously trading sex for housework, but that seeing their men do more of it puts them in a better mood in general.

According to Chethik's study, a man doesn't have to do exactly 50 percent of the housework to please his wife. If he just does enough so that she feels supported, she'll be happier. And obviously, the exact amount that each of them does around the house can be negotiated based on things like the number of hours each of them works, how much time they spend with the children, etc.

Chethik even quantifies how much more sex a man is likely to have if his wife feels he's helping out appropriately around the house: about one time more per month. I'm sure there are cynics and just lazy guys out there who might respond, "It's not worth just one more time a month for me to mop that floor." But keep in mind, none of these researchers is just talking about sex. They're all saying that a man can make his mate happier by doing more of the housework. Sex is only a side benefit.

All the same, if more studies agree with these, and if an increasing number of men believe in the results, I think we'll see more and more guys grab brooms, irons, and rags, and get to work. They'll reason that if some help will yield one more time a month, just think how much more sex a lot of housework will yield. We might even get to a point that women will ask men to do less around the house. In other words, someday we might see the old cliché change to, "Please honey, don't do the dishes tonight. I've got a headache."--http://www.cbsnews.com/news/men-want-more-sex-do-the-laundry-12-09-2007/