Do I Bring Shame to My Husband?

A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones. ~Proverbs 12:4

As a jewel of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a fair woman which is without discretion.  
Proverbs 11:22 

Ouch right?  Are we bringing shame?   

There are two main types of shame that I can think of.  One would be bringing a husband public shame before others.  Another would be making him ashamed of you as his wife.  Perhaps there are others I have not yet thought of.

Today we are going to talk about both.  Before I continue I want to give a typical disclaimer of sort, I am writing to Christian sisters and not to the brothers.  So please don’t message me with admonishments that I need to set the men straight too.  I do not believe that is my place.  I leave that to the men to teach the men.  So if you are a Christian wife and want to avoid bringing your husband shame, I encourage you to read on with an open heart.  Ask yourself along the way if you there are any of these you need to improve on.  I am, right along with you.  So realize, please, this writer isn’t perfect nor innocent on these things below.  Ask the Holy Spirit to show you if you can learn how to improve on this topic.

I came up with a few ones.  Some were perhaps minor or superficial and others are far deeper impacting.  I also asked my husband what are the ways in which he feels a wife can bring shame to her husband.

He had wonderful responses too.  So I am going to go over what we came up with together.  I am going to cover the bigger ones first.  

Tale-bearing in any form is a major way to bring shame.  Especially if she tells negative stories on him.  Resolve to treat him as you’d like to be treated.  Speak only edifying things to others about him.  Hopefully, he will do the same for you.  I am not talking about hiding physical abuses or anything of that nature.  I am speaking in general, if there is no reason such as safety to share your negative thoughts about your husband, take it before the Lord in prayer rather than before others.  Definitely lying about anyone is sinful. So if you are telling outright lies about your husband, you need to repent and seek God over this sort of thing.
Being self-absorbed, instead of self-less can bring shame.  This can translate into a lot of areas and issues really.  If a wife put herself and her own needs consistently above his, not only will she bring her husband shame in many ways, it is a recipe for a failed marriage.
Persistently interrupting him, especially in front of others is very much shameful.  Frankly, anyone interrupting anyone else is a major peeve of mine.  It is highly disrespectful and shows that a person feels their words are more important.  It greatly devalues the opinions and thoughts of others if the interrupter can not even shush up long enough to let others speak.  Now I am not talking about those little accidental interruptions that happen when two people get excited talking to one another.  I am talking about persistently pushing in with your way and your words.  If you do that in front of others and you really just showed everyone you don’t care what your husband thinks or feels.
Joking in a mean way about her husband that makes him look or feel foolish, immature, etc  Folks often hide disrespect by writing it off as jokes.  There is absolutely a place for joking.  Life is too hard not to have some levity.  My husband and I tease each other quite a lot.  We try to remain sensitive to the other’s hearts.  I can usually tell if I am taking something too far.  Likewise is certainly true.  Seriously, I will cry on you if my feelings get hurt,, so it is kind of obvious.  LOL  There are a lot of women who find it funny to joke about their husband being another of their children.  I do not find that funny.  I find it disrespectful.  Likely, so does the husband.  Some will brush it off to try to go along with the joke because they don’t want to be seen as being too sensitive to simple jokes.  Implying one's husband is another child lets everyone know she thinks that she is the more wise and mature one.  It is shaming him.

Being unkind to his friends, coworkers, acquaintances
If your husband has introduced you to someone he knows, and you are mean, rude, or anything less than at least polite and kind, then you are definitely bringing him shame.  
Acting inappropriately in public, and just by nature people know you are his wife, that brings shame
IF a wife goes to the local bank and throws a fit about something, starts being rude and demanding, or perhaps even cussing.  Odds are good she will be remembered.  Especially if it is a small town.  Every time your husband is seen with you, people will wonder about him too.  If you are a Christian, and people know, this kind of behavior reflects badly on the name of Christ as well.  Sometimes we think we are only affecting ourselves, we are not.  

I blush to think of a few times when I have brought shame this way in the past.  It is not something I am proud of, but I have done it.  I endeavor not to do so ever again.  I pray I do not.  It isn’t unlike giving someone the 1 finger salute and having Christian bumper stickers on your car.  We all know that is a no-no and is a bad witness.  But a wife’s public actions in any place her husband too.


Not doing your part to teach the children good behavior, thus the appearance of a household in disarray.  This is one my husband pointed out.   I need to improve here because I seem the room for it.  We can probably all improve our child training.  If we haven’t taught our children well; to be respectful, polite, and generally well behaved, it reflects badly on the husband.  This is also emphasized in the requirements for pastors, deacons, and elders.  These are supposed to be men that are required to be known to have their home in order.  Likewise, for men that do not, it is shameful.

My husband also mentioned the general tranquility of a home.  That can certainly bring a personal shame if every time a man gets off of work and he is blasted the day's disasters, and has a cranky wife to come home too.  Obviously not every home can be peaceful 100% of the time, especially when you are raising ornery children.  ;-)  As a wife, especially if you are a stay-at-home wife we should strive to make our homes feel a peaceful place of retreat.  We want our husband to feel honored and blessed to come home.

My husband mentioned how you speak to your husband personally can make him bloom or wilt.  It isn’t just about what you say about him, it is what you say directly to him.  You can lift and edify him or tear him down.  Resolve to treat him how you’d like to be treated yourself, that alone will solve a ton and avoid him being ashamed of his relationship with you.

Acting or dressing immodestly, especially flirting with other men, etc  First, I don’t think I need to say that flirting with other men is bad.  I mean, that is just obvious and if you are a Christ-professing woman, I should not even have to say that.  I realize I probably do though.  So if you are flirting, you are being an adulteress of the heart.  Sister, I advise you to simply knock it off right now if you are doing that.  I am guessing anyone who read this far, probably isn’t doing that though.

The lack of modest dressing is an issue with the potential to bring shame.  Always ask yourself, are you dressing to gain the attention of other men?  That would be a bad thing and bringing shame.  There is no reason for you to display your wares as if you are looking for a buyer.  If you are dressing to please your husband, that is a whole lot better than pleasing everyone else.  Just keep in mind the Bible requires us to be modest too.  I urge you to seek your husband’s counsel for what he feels is modest too.  Put your heads together and talk about these things.  Find a standard for your family so you don’t bring shame to God and the husband.

I think this is the sort of thing many ladies first think of when discussing the topic of shame.  We might initially think of how we appear physically.  Many times I have heard this kind of thing reduced to we should “look our best” for our husband.  Wives are told to be pretty, stylish, attractive, and such.  My least favorite, “Don’t be frumpy”.  (another topic for another day)  Anyway, oftentimes we ladies are reminded to get out the lipstick and curling iron, and pretty ourselves up so our husband isn’t ashamed of how we look.   

I think that is a dangerous line of thinking.  No, I am not trying to condemn those who wear makeup or style their hair.  I am talking about the emphasis on things that don’t matter won’t be very helpful.  It is certainly okay to be pretty and lovely for our husbands, but a line is crossed when you do it to gain the attention of others.  That becomes vanity and must be guarded against.  

I think valid questions to ask ourselves in this area might be: Is our appearance clean and neat?  Are we a disarray of torn, wrinkled, and stained clothing?  We should work on that if we are.  There is no danger in being tidy in appearance.  As to styles of clothing, makeup or lack thereof, hair,etc…personally, I think that is entirely between you and your husband.  Seek his counsel and opinions on the matter.    

Foolishly spending money so that you are unable to build up a good household and take care of important needs.  If the wife is creating debt for frivolous things, when other bills go unpaid this definitely brings shame.  Even if she isn’t creating debt, it is still taking from funds that could be saved for something better and more useful to the family as a whole.  Be a wife who is a saver.  

Even if you are like me and a homemaker you can bring monetary value to the household by doing everything you can to save money instead of blowing it on nonessentials.  Obviously, it is okay to have some nice things here and there.  Treats are totally okay and a blessing.  There just has to be balance.  Make sure all of the purchases, especially major ones.  You should make sure you both are in agreement before whipping out the funds for any larger purchase.  I have seen some stay at home wives spend ALL the funds their husbands earn on the most useless, silly things.  Be wise there sisters.  
  
Someone once told me I was a shame to my husband and faith due to my weight.  For better or worse, I couldn’t help but consider the words, even though they cut so terribly deep.  It is something I couldn’t argue with a whole lot either.  There is a level of that.  It is an area I lack control and it does bring a shame I suppose.  It is something I am working on and am trying to conquer this thorn in my side.  I wanted to be open and toss in one of my own glaring issues for you to ask about for yourselves as well.

I am sure many of you may be able to contribute potential ways a wife can bring shame to her husband.  It seems so heavy to focus on the negative side of all of this.  So make sure to find balance.  We need to stop bringing shame, AND ask how can we be a blessing to our husbands.  This might be the next major topic for a post and video, or at very least, one I want to hit on soon.

Please remember as I wrote the post sometimes I address ‘you’.  Please don’t take it as a personal accusation  They are just questions to ask ourselves for self-improvement as wives.  I am asking myself right along with you all.

Have a blessed day in Christ Jesus!!!

Comments

  1. Thank you Eleanor for this. I just recently wrote a post on being an encouragement to our husband but I like yours way more than mine.
    I try my very best not to shame my husband but I know I have failed at times . I'm looking forward to your future posts. You should let the ladies at Plain Women at the Well know you are blogging again.
    Have a blessed day!

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  2. Thank you Sister for this great post! I also watch you on Utube. This is a great list of ideas on ways that we can bring shame to our husband's. I agree about the modesty issue where we can often be encouraged by other woman to 'do ourselves up' for our husband's which can sometimes border on vanity and a preoccupation of how we look as well as attracting others. I know it is a personal issue and conviction but just something that you mentioned which I think is very important to consider. I share the same views as you on this issue. Our demeanor is also very important in how we carry ourselves and behave. Love your messages!
    God bless,

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