Share This Episode
Building Relationships Dr. Gary Chapman Logo

Dear Gary February

Building Relationships / Dr. Gary Chapman
The Truth Network Radio
February 26, 2022 1:00 am

Dear Gary February

Building Relationships / Dr. Gary Chapman

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 233 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.


February 26, 2022 1:00 am

It’s time to hear answers to your relational conundrums! On this Building Relationships podcast, hear an encore presentation of a Dear Gary broadcast. What will Gary say to an insecure wife? How will he deal with an angry son or a husband hooked on pornography? And what about a single person who is infatuated? Don’t miss this February Dear Gary podcast!

Featured Resource: The 5 Love Languages® by Dr. Gary Chapman

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
Hope for the Caregiver
Peter Rosenberger
Moody Church Hour
Pastor Phillip Miller
Renewing Your Mind
R.C. Sproul
The Christian Worldview
David Wheaton
Building Relationships
Dr. Gary Chapman
Focus on the Family
Jim Daly

Simple ways to strengthen relationships. Today on Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman. Why do some men seem to be predisposed to anger? We argue a lot about theology.

It's a really hard time admitting money's wrong. I'm 75 years old and I just want a little respect. Welcome to Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, author of the New York Times bestseller, "The 5 Love Languages" . Today it's a Dear Gary broadcast for February as Dr. Chapman takes questions from listeners about a variety of topics.

This is an encore presentation for your listening pleasure. Gary, we're going to go back a few years to a group of calls we took on a program four years ago. And I have wondered in the years that we have done this program if your answers ever change. It seems to me that pretty much on every topic you stay consistent.

Well, I hope so, Chris. You know, if I feel like it's a biblical application, no reason to change your idea on that. But at the same time, you know, we're all growing in our understanding of Scripture, our application of Scripture. And certainly it's possible that some things that I might have advised 30 years ago might give different advice now. Yes. Well, let me ask you about that, because the thing that immediately came to mind was abuse in marriage.

You know, would your answer 30 years ago have been any different, any nuanced differently today than it would have been, you know, three decades ago? You know, I think the answer is probably yes, Chris. I think in the early days before I had done a lot of counseling, I was just kind of saying, you know, if you're married, it's a covenant.

You know, you need to stay with it. And I still believe that. I believe it is a covenant. I believe it's designed of God to be a lifelong relationship. But I would never have suggested, I think, in those days, separation. But, you know, as I've dealt with this so much through the years, I think separation can be an act of love. I'm not talking about divorce, which it may end in divorce. But, you know, if there's physical and emotional abuse that's been extended, you know, over a period of time, you've talked, you've tried to get them to get help, they won't get help, separation can be an act of love.

It's kind of like you're saying, you know, I don't know how you feel about us, but, you know, I love you too much to sit here and do nothing as you destroy me and give our children this model of abuse. So, therefore, I'm going to move in with my mother or, you know, whatever the plan is. I'm not abandoning you. I'm willing to go for counseling if and when.

If you get some help with the problem, I'm willing then to join you in marriage counseling. So, to me, that is a loving approach, which I probably would not have even suggested, you know, 30 years ago. Right. And it's interesting because in just a couple of weeks, we're going to feature a program, the resource that day from Dr. David Clark is Enough is Enough, a step-by-step plan to leave an abusive relationship with God's help. And so you're going to hear that. I'm excited about that conversation that we're going to have with Dr. Clark in the future, Gary. But I just want to say here in our February Dear Gary broadcast, thank you for being you, for being consistent, practical, biblical all through the years. Well, you know, Chris, I do believe that ultimately the answers to relationships are found in the Bible. And when we apply those things, then we have the best possibility of having good relationships. We can't control the other person. You know, we can't make them, you know, follow biblical guidelines. Even God doesn't make people do right.

But I think we, this is the anchor for life is what does the scriptures teach about that? All right. Let's take you back four years ago to a February Dear Gary broadcast, when we began with a call about a wife who is insecure.

Hi, Gary. Thanks for taking my call. My question is, I've been married for 17 years and my wife is very insecure, to the point where if I'm ever on the computer, she's constantly coming in and looking over my shoulder to see what I'm looking at, which I'm not looking at anything wrong. This goes on and I get upset and I'll just get up and walk out and let her go ahead and look at the computer.

I'm done. If we're watching a movie or something like that and there's any amount of cleavage showing, which is almost impossible to see anything these days without that happening, she gets all upset about that. She doesn't like me talking to other women, even women old enough to be my mother. She's uncomfortable with that. I've tried to affirm to her that I'm committed to our relationship.

I'm a one man woman and so on, but I'm not sure if you have any advice for me to help that situation. Again, thank you for taking my call. My guess is that there's a record playing in her mind based on experiences she's had in the past that are affecting her present behavior. Could be wrong, but my guess is that's what's going on. Either her father was unfaithful to her mother or she was married before she married you and he was unfaithful to her. My guess is she's been deeply hurt, deeply disappointed by something that's happened in her life and that record is playing. You cannot trust the other person. That will not simply go away with the passing of time. And if you are irritated with her, treat her harshly when she responds in this way, that's not going to help either. The only real help will be if she's willing to go for a counselor, sit down, be honest and open, and look at her past and understand how her past is impacting her present. It doesn't have to go on like this. We are all influenced by what has happened in our lives in the past, but it doesn't have to control us in the present. But it takes time and a process to work through that and for her to come to understand and accept that.

So I think the best thing you could do would be encourage her to go with you for counseling and then get personal counseling herself for whatever's there inside of her that's causing her to respond this way to you. It's one other thing, Gary, let me throw this out and see what you think of it, especially when the dynamic is this way. The husband is being affected by something that his wife does or a mindset that she has. He can take this so personally and respond to it negatively.

And why are you always saying that? Get up and walk out of the room. If his wife had been injured, let's say, when she was a child, a bone was shattered in her leg, and today she walks with a limp. He wouldn't look at her and say, why do you keep limping? He would understand there's something that happened way back there that's causing her to walk in the way that she walks. And he's not going to accuse her of anything that way. This same thing, if you're right, if this thing happened in the past and she's still limping emotionally because of it, I think that will give him a better vision of moving into her life and instead of taking it so personally every time it happens, to maybe ask some questions and to help her see more of his own heart toward her.

What do you think? I think you're exactly right, Chris, and I like that illustration of the physical because you can see the physical. You can understand the connection between the accident and the present limp. You can't see it emotionally. It's there. It's just as real, but you can't see it.

And if he can see that, I think, yes, he would come to be able to understand her better, accept her behavior more, and do whatever he can to help her come to learn how to trust. Yes. All right, there are a lot of marriage questions that we had this month that we're featuring on the program. Again, you can find out more about our featured resource. FiveLoveLanguages.com is our website. Our featured resource is "The 5 Love Languages" . Just go to FiveLoveLanguages.com. Here's another marriage struggle I think many listeners will identify with, a couple that argues over a lot of things. So I need to know a good way to get her to drop the name it, claim it, religion stuff, get with me on this book, and not push but want to learn because we are already married.

Thank you. Well, I can identify with that, Chris. I think many, many couples have struggles in the first year of their marriage. They anticipate conflicts they never, ever thought would arise. And it's in the midst of conflicts that they put each other down, they argue with each other, they try to win the argument, failing to understand that if they win the argument, their spouse lost. You know, who wants to be a loser?

But we create losers. And I hear that he's trying. You know, he's got a copy of "The 5 Love Languages" . He's reading it. It's making sense to him. She's beginning to read it.

Hopefully it's going to make sense to her, even though she's not real hip about doing it, it sounds like. If they can understand that concept that we have different love languages, because obviously he doesn't feel loved, my guess is she doesn't feel loved, and very likely because one of their love languages is words of affirmation, and they're not giving each other words of affirmation. They're giving each other words of condemnation. And so neither one of them are feeling loved. And you can't resolve a conflict very well if you neither feel loved, and you both know that you're right, which is also a human characteristic. We're always right about theology or anything else.

Our side is the right side. I hope, I pray, that as they read the book and come to understand the concept of the love languages, and take the quiz and determine what their love language is, they can look back on this first year and begin to understand why we got to where we are. Obviously, he's already read the first chapter, which indicates that that in-love experience only lasts for two years, and he's already lost it in the first year, probably because they dated for a while before they got married. And if you can come to understand that, that we can choose love and learn the right love language, it can change the emotional climate, and that has to happen for them to make any progress on coming together theologically. They can argue forever about theology, and it's not going to help their marriage and not help their walk with God, for that matter. So I would just pray that they'll both be open to what they're reading and trying to learn in the book, "The 5 Love Languages" . Yeah. Every time I hear a caller ask a question, how do I get her to, or how do I get him to, I have this tape playing in my head of you saying, you can't change, you can influence, but you can't change that other person.

Much better to work on you. And I get it. If I had a theological disagreement as big as the one that they have in their marriage, that would be a real concern to me. But at the same time, I think, well, let's look at the positives here. She really does believe in God and that God is there and cares. And they have a lot that they're on the same page as far as theologically, they're different in some ways. But they have a lot to be, he has a lot to be thankful for that she really believes that God is out there for her and him. So I guess I see some positives here rather than just all negatives.

Well, I think so. They probably have a whole lot more in common theologically than they differ on. To go back to your point, he can influence her by learning her love language and choosing to speak it, and God will help him do that. Speak it and begin over a period of time, he's going to see a change in her. Because right now, his response toward her is negative because she disagrees with him on things.

And so it's not enhancing anything. But if he starts speaking her love language and does it no matter how she responds to him, over a period of time, she's going to get the message, hey, this guy, this guy really cares about me. And when she begins to feel that, then she's far more open to changing her own behavior. As you said, we don't change our spouse, but we do influence our spouse, either negatively or positively.

And right now, my guess is, he's influencing her in a negative way by his behavior. I have a follow up to that, but let's take a quick break. Well, we have more great questions ahead, including what if your spouse can't admit they're wrong?

What do you do? Our featured resource today is Dr. Chapman's New York Times bestseller, "The 5 Love Languages" , The Secret to Love That Lasts. You can find out more at our website, fivelovelanguages.com.

That's fivelovelanguages.com. Today's Dear Gary broadcast is an encore presentation from 2018. Our program is Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, and this is our Dear Gary broadcast. If you have a relationship question you'd like to ask, call our listener line at 1-866-424-GARY. Keep your question as brief as possible, and we'll try to answer it here on the program.

That's 1-866-424-GARY. Our featured resource today is "The 5 Love Languages" , The Secret to Love That Lasts. Find out more at fivelovelanguages.com, fivelovelanguages.com. A quick follow-up, Gary, to what we were talking about with the husband and the wife who have theological differences. I remember when Dr. Gary Smalley talked about the speaker-listener technique, you know, the drive-through, a person orders, and then the person on the inside repeats their order. I wonder if that wouldn't help this couple, since they argue a lot. Rather than just getting into that, you know, round and round and round we go with the argument, when she says something about theology or whatever, he just stops and says, okay, let me see if I can understand what you just said, you just said, and then he repeats that back to her.

Does that help in a married situation like that? It does help, Chris, but you have to have an empathetic attitude to do that. We're not by nature like that.

By nature, we're just arguing our point. But if we understand we're both humans, we're both made in the image of God, and as humans, we do think differently and we feel differently, and if we're ever going to have unity in a marriage, we have to learn to respect the other person's thoughts, even if we disagree with them. And it's that attitude that allows you to listen empathetically.

And by empathetically, I mean you put yourself in their shoes, you try to look at the world through their eyes, you have to remember where they've been, what they've been taught, the background they've had, and you try to understand what they're saying and how they can see that and why they see that, and then you affirm them and say, I think I'm understanding what you're saying, and I guess I'm seeing your perspective on that. Now, here's another question. What do you do when one spouse can't admit that they're wrong?

Hi, Gary. Me and my husband are married. He is a wonderful guy, and we're both Christians. However, he has a really hard time admitting when he's wrong. That is just so difficult to deal with because it kind of affects everyday life and it's probably a source of a lot of arguments. I'm praying about it, but I notice that it is kind of getting me depressed because whenever I try to talk to him about it, he just won't hear anything about it. If I ask him if he's wrong, it's almost like it's the worst thing in the world to be wrong. We're seeing a marriage counselor and we're going on a weekend.

If you could shed a little light on it because it's just bringing me down. Thank you very much. Well, first of all, I'm glad you're going for counseling and I'm glad you're going on a weekend enrichment.

Hopefully, those are going to be helpful to you. Most of the time, when a husband, or a wife for that matter, has the difficulty admitting that they're wrong, it's because they grew up in a home where their parents seldom ever told them what they did right, but every day they told them what they were doing wrong. And somewhere in the psyche of that child and that teenager, they began to get the sense, if I ever grow up, I'll never be wrong again because they felt so condemned, everything they did was wrong, and they don't like that feeling. So they decided when I get to be big, I'll never be wrong again. And so they have difficulty. This is the kind of thing the counselor can help you and him come to understand why he is the way he is.

He doesn't have to stay there, but if you can understand why, then you will feel better about it and then you can begin to work on changing it. I wrote a book some time ago called When Sorry Isn't Enough, in which I discuss not only saying I'm sorry and not only saying I'm wrong, but there's three other ways that people typically apologize. And those who have difficulty with any of them can learn how to express an apology in those words, particularly if that apology is meaningful to the other person. So I think you'd find some help in that book as well. If you go to our website, FiveLoveLanguages.com, you can see our featured resource today, which is "The 5 Love Languages" , the secret to love that lasts.

Again, go to FiveLoveLanguages.com. All right, Gary, our next caller wanted to remain anonymous, so let me read his question. Thanks, Gary, for your podcast. It's really encouraging. I've read about the neurology of infatuation and the way that it's kind of like a time bomb and lasts a particular time in each person. I found myself in this place with my girlfriend. We've been together almost eight months, and she's godly and encouraging and everything I feel I need in this relationship, but I'm definitely infatuated with her. In that place, I want to be well prepared for the day when that infatuation wears off, but I also don't want to be afraid or paranoid about it.

Would you help me understand how to do that well and how to trust the Lord with this stage in life, how to glorify Him in that? Thanks, Gary. A synonym for infatuation is falling in love or being in love. Sometimes people have different meanings for those words, but essentially it's the same emotional experience. You really are pushed along by these strong emotional feelings toward that person, and this person has indicated that very clearly. He's very much attracted to this person. The average lifespan of that experience that we call falling in love or being infatuated with another person is two years.

So he's been in it for eight months. He knows it's coming, and he's asking, how am I going to handle it when it comes? Well, the very fact that you know it is positive, and you know that it's not abnormal to come down off that high because when I was in the early days of my marriage, nobody told me that. I thought if you found the right person and if you're really in love, it was going to last forever. And when I came down off the high, I was greatly disappointed and greatly frustrated.

So the fact that you already know that this is going to happen is a plus. I would say this is where understanding "The 5 Love Languages" , that what makes one person feel love doesn't make another person feel love. This is after you come down off the high. But if you can learn each other's love language now, while you're still in love with each other, you still have these strong feelings, and you begin speaking each other's love language, when you do come down off the high, you'll see it first of all as being normal, and you will already know how to communicate love to each other. You'll be doing it already.

You continue that. And really, you hardly miss the high because you still feel emotionally loved by each other. The key is getting that concept down and learning how to speak each other's love language.

So you're at a good place, really, eight months into the relationship, to be learning that and learning how to speak each other's love language. I was going to say, I want to stand and applaud and commend. You know, he's got both eyes wide open. She probably does as well, just to be able to ask these questions rather than, oh, she's so wonderful, she's always going to be the most wonderful. To be able to get to that point right now, there's a lot of hope here, isn't there? Oh, absolutely. I mean, he's very insightful already. And obviously, he wants to please God. And if you really want to please God, God has a way of bringing to you the information you need that'll help you do that, because he wants it more than you do.

That's Dr. Gary Chapman. This is Building Relationships. And our broadcast that comes to you each weekend right here. Now, sign up for the podcast. As our caller just mentioned, he really appreciates that.

And you might as well, if you miss a program, you can hear the podcast. Now, would you label your marriage as hopeless? If you do, you have something in common with our next caller.

Hi, Gary. I don't know where to start. And I think my marriage is already over with my wife has been told me almost six months ago that she wanted to separate our divorce and separation.

And every weekend, since she spent an entire weekend with her longtime friend before she met me with him, she doesn't want to talk about us or read anything or do anything. And I guess all I'm really asking for is just some prayer. I don't really know where to go or what to do, but I just heard about the book One More Chance.

Now I'm going to see if I can't get that. And thanks much, Gary, for your book. I did read The Five Languages of Love, and I enjoyed it.

But I don't know how to apply anything in my current situation. I'm still married, but I have no idea where anything is going. Thank you. Well, I think many of our listeners will identify with this caller because there are many marriages that are at that place where the husband or the wife is saying to the other, I'm through.

And many reasons for that. Things have happened to get them to that place, but they're saying, I'm through. And they won't read a book, they won't go for counseling, they won't do anything. And in this case, they're actually seeing someone else on the weekends, apparently a former boyfriend.

I would say of all my books, the one he has bought in his reading is the most helpful. It's called One More Try, What to Do When Your Marriage is Falling Apart. It does deal with this situation. And again, I'm saying, you can't force them to come back, you can't force them to change their mind, but the way you respond to them in this time does influence them.

Either it pushes them further away, or it begins to open the door to the possibility of reconciliation. So I would say, ask God to show you how you can express love to her, even though she's not loving you. This is precisely what God does for us.

The Bible says he loved us before we loved him, and he loved us when we were still sinners. So it's unconditional love in whatever contact you have with her, and it sounds like in this case she's still living in the house, she's just gone on the weekends with someone else. Obviously, from the human perspective, there doesn't look like a lot of hope here, but you never know what God will do in her heart if she sees you living in a positive way and reaching out to her in love. Whatever she complained about to you, those are the things you need to really be asking God to help you change. Now, she may not come back even if you change them, but she certainly won't come back if you don't change them. Let her complaints tell you what you need to be working on during this time. And if you do that, you're going to be growing as a person so that even if she doesn't come back, you're going to be a better person because you're beginning to deal with some of the things that have led her to the place where she says, I'm through, I'm not going to work on this anymore. So work on yourself.

Use this as a time to grow in self-understanding and changing the things that God brings to your mind that need to be changed in your own life. Well, this is Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman. Our featured resource today is "The 5 Love Languages" , The Secret to Love That Lasts. You can find out more and take an assessment of your love language at our website, fivelovelanguages.com. Plus, you'll find our podcast, see where Gary's coming to your area for a seminar and a whole lot more, all at fivelovelanguages.com.

A question from a mom about her adult angry son is coming up straight ahead on Moody Radio. This is Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman. Find out more online at fivelovelanguages.com. We have some great resources for you, including our locations coming up for Dr. Chapman. You can hear a podcast of the program and find out about our featured resource, all at fivelovelanguages.com.

And do tell a friend about the program. I think this is an excellent way to reach out to those who may differ from you about a whole lot of things, but most people really want to deepen their relationships. Invite them to tune in or download the podcast, fivelovelanguages.com.

Our featured resource today is "The 5 Love Languages" , The Secret to Love That Lasts, fivelovelanguages.com's our website. And if you'd like to ask a question of Dr. Chapman, call our number, 866-424-GARY, 1-866-424-GARY. Now, a mom with a big struggle regarding her adult son. Hi, Gary.

Love your books. My question is about my 55-year-old son who is so, so angry and hostile towards me. He got really sick last year and I supported him financially, mentally, emotionally, in every way I could. I got him to a point where he has money, but he couldn't even take care of himself, take a bath or anything. His wife is kind of useless. She has mental disorders, and most of the time I take her out, so she wouldn't have much help.

I don't know. I'm just over the anger and the hostility towards me, and I understand that he was in pain. I still try to have patience.

He always kind of was angry, but just absolutely awful. He'd be nice to the nurses, but always it'd be no matter what I say, do, or anything else. And yet, if it wasn't for me, the truth is, as his wife says, they would have been homeless. So I don't know what else to do. At this point, I'm staying away from them because I just can't handle the stress anymore.

I'm 75 years old, and I just want a little respect. Obviously, I don't speak any of his love languages, and I've tried them all. I don't know.

None of them seem to work. Thank you. Bye. Well, my heart goes out to this mother. When you do everything you can for your children, and even in adulthood, she's still giving, giving, giving, and yet receiving no respect and no love from him, it's very painful.

I think what she's doing is probably the best thing for her at the moment, and that is put some distance between the two of them just for her own emotional survival. There is a reason why he's angry. She says he's always been angry to some degree. Anger grows out of the sense that I have been wronged.

I have been treated unfairly, not necessarily by the mother, but just by life. I don't know what all he's been through, but the fact that his wife also has mental and emotional problems, at least, that's what his mother is saying. My guess is that there's a history of things where he has been disappointed.

He's been left out. He's felt like the world is not treating him right if he has a God concept, that God's not treating him right. And so that anger is built up inside of him, and it comes out toward his mother, probably toward anyone else with whom he has contact. And that doesn't just go away as you get older.

I mean, he's 55 already. It has to be dealt with. Someone has to help you look back and understand where that anger's coming from and why you've been angry, but also help you understand that your response to your anger is not helping you as a person because when you lash out at the people that are trying to help you, you're making things worse. In this case, if the mother just totally walks away and has nothing to do with him in the future, then is he gonna be on the street?

But you see, when you're angry, you can't clearly see all of that. Don't know that he would go for counseling. That's what he needs. Perhaps the mother could at least offer, if he wants to go for counseling, she would pay for the counseling. That would be a good investment of her money rather than just giving him money to invest it in something that might have some hope for him. Whether or not he would do that, I have no idea.

It would certainly be a loving offer for the mother to make. Gary, that's such a hard situation between a mom and an adult son, and there's a whole lot there that we don't know. I have some follow-up questions.

I wanna move, though, to a different question that is even more difficult, if you can believe that. We have another anonymous caller who asked that we not use her voice on the radio, so I'm gonna let Andrea read this, what I think is a really important question. Hi, Gary. In the past, I've been hit in the face four times in 10 years, and once we got into an argument, he pushed on the back of the bathroom door. I fell backwards into the tub. I had told him before that if anything happened again, I would call the police. I had him arrested. Four years ago, he got into an argument and fight with our son. One night, my son spoke up, called him a jerk, and my son pushed him.

My son has some learning disabilities. He was upset that his dad wouldn't listen. My husband slapped him and grabbed him around the neck. Our son said he would call the police, and my husband said he would not go to jail again. He will not admit fault. He said it was an accident that I fell in the tub.

What do I do with these things? Thank you, Gary. Well, physical abuse of the nature that this caller describes cannot be accepted because if it's happened as many times as she indicated, both to her and to the son, it's not going to change in the future. Now, can he change? Yes, if he went for counseling, if he got serious, if he really began to deal with the issues, but chances are he won't do that. My advice to her is for your own safety and for the safety of your son. You know, I believe in marriage.

I believe in reconciliation, but I don't believe it's healthy to stay there and let someone physically abuse you in the nature you've described. That's not good for him. It's not good for you.

It doesn't bring glory to God. So if you take a tough love approach and you say to him, you know, in the light of all that you've done to me through the years and now do unto our son, I cannot stay here. I'm not helping you by staying here. I'm going to move in with my mother.

I'm going to do whatever. And you may need a counselor to help you have the courage and the timing on how to do this, but tough love is the only kind of love your husband is going to respond to because you've already talked with him. You've already confronted him, but he doesn't change until he's about to lose something. So for you to take tough love, and remember, tough love is love. It's saying I love you too much to sit here and do nothing. I'm going to do this hoping that you will get help and we can get help, but I'm not helping you by staying here.

I'm loving you more by removing myself from this situation. That's my advice. As I said, you probably will not have the emotional ability to do that, maybe not even the financial ability to do that without talking with someone, a pastor, a counselor, someone who can help you on how to do that and when to do that. Because what's happening is your son is very likely developing the same lifestyle that the father has. And you don't want that.

Above all things, you don't want that. If you can get him out of there now and get him in a different situation, it may be his salvation as well. And we've talked with couples who've gone through this and sometimes there is a miraculous turnaround. And the spouse, it can be a husband or a wife, by the way. It's not just always the husband that abuses physically. Sometimes it's the wife. But I think, as we've talked about here before, many times it is the husband. It almost sounds like, to me, that a face-to-face conversation when she moves out might not even be helpful.

It might be you leave a note after you've gone, after you've planned this with people who are going to support you so that you don't have this confrontation where he gets another chance to take more action physically. I think that's true, Chris. And you know, in most cities, at least larger cities, there are shelters for battered women. And I would encourage her to see what might be available as to where she and her son could go in making that step.

But you're right. Doing it and leaving a note might be the better approach. That's why I was suggesting a counselor could help her know when and how to do this. You know, it's really interesting, Gary, because I was reading the book Loving Your Spouse When You Feel Like Walking Away, Real Help for Desperate Hearts and Difficult Marriages, Positive Steps for Improving a Difficult Marriage. It just, as I was reading through it, you know, you go to the workaholic spouse and the controlling spouse and the one that is the Dead Sea, the uncommunicative, you know, won't talk to you. And then you get into these deep areas of being verbally abusive and physically abusive and sexually abusive.

What do you do with an unfaithful spouse? This is Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, our featured resource today now is "The 5 Love Languages" . You can find out more at FiveLoveLanguages.com. Again, FiveLoveLanguages.com.

Coming up, dealing with marriage disappointment straight ahead on Moody Radio. This is Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, author of the New York Times bestseller, "The 5 Love Languages" . Our featured resource today is the foundational book, "The 5 Love Languages" , The Secret to Love That Lasts. Find out more at FiveLoveLanguages.com. That's FiveLoveLanguages.com. Is your marriage a disappointment?

If it is, what do you do? Here's our next call. Hi, Gary. Thank you to you and Chris and Andrea and your team for your ministry and for taking caller's questions. I grew up with an angry father and a supportive mother who did her best to make him happy. And I always told myself that my home would be different someday. So eventually I grew up and I married a godly man who truly loved the Lord. And he was a leader in a Bible study and I felt sure things would be different for us. And I cannot tell you the fear and the deep disappointment I felt when shortly after we were married I began to see that he too was an angry man. He got angry over little things like traffic jams, telemarketer calls, when I said something he didn't like, when the kids were loud, when they didn't do what he said right away, just normal things in life. And this went on for the first 25 years of our marriage until he finally began to try much harder. Yet he still has times when he gets impatient and angry over what to me seem like insignificant things. Now my question to you is why do some men seem to be predisposed to anger like my father and my husband? And what is the best way for a wife to deal with this without angering him further but yet also not enabling him? Thank you.

Good question. And coming from a wife who's been married 25 years or more now, wow, I'm empathetic with that. The fact that he is a believer in Christ, the fact that she said after 25 years she saw him trying harder not to get angry, but the fact that he does still get angry over little things, there is a history behind that. Very, very likely his father was also an angry man. You know, we are greatly influenced by our parents. And if a young man grows up in a home where his father is angry about everything, he may as a young teenager say, I don't want to be like that. But in reality, we are influenced. And when we get grown, we often fall into the same patterns of an abusive father.

I don't know if you know anything about his father and whether that's true of him or whether it's not true of him. I wrote a book some time ago simply entitled, Anger Taming a Powerful Emotion. If he is in a mental spiritual framework where he is looking for help, and it sounds like he might be because the caller said he's trying, he seems him trying, I think that book could be very, very helpful to him because it talks about two kinds of anger. What I call definitive anger, when you have been wronged by someone and you should be angry because the anger motivates you to try to right the wrong. And distorted anger where we get angry over because things didn't go our way and that's the kind of thing she's describing when she says little things, traffic jams and those kind of things. And we handle those very, very differently because one grows out of real wrong, the other grows out of selfishness where we want the world to operate on our timetable and everybody to do what we want them to do. I think it'd be insightful for him and maybe even the two of you to work through that book together and ask what can we learn about anger and anger management.

Many people have said that book has been extremely helpful to them. The other thing, of course, would be, yes, to see a counselor. I don't know if he'd be open to that. But simply trying harder is not the complete answer. He needs to understand what's behind what he does and then he needs to ask God to give him the power to change a very destructive pattern that he has allowed to continue in his life. There is hope and the fact that he is apparently a strong Christian and he has a desire to change, those are the two major things. Now we just need to get him to the right help. And so a book can help, a counselor can help, and certainly God can help break that pattern. That's Dr. Gary Chapman.

You can find out more about him and our featured resource today, "The 5 Love Languages" , at fivelovelanguages.com, fivelovelanguages.com. Boy, a lot of deep questions here, Gary, and real struggles that people are going through in marriage and in their families. I have one more for you and I want you to hear this from a man who is exasperated as well for a different reason.

Here we go. I'm in a situation dealing with a lot of family and friends, non-Christians, who keep coming to me and think I've got to keep giving and giving and giving because it's always a Christian thing to do. The deals and things that were made were never followed through with these people about repaying and doing these things. And I think it's sort of, well, you know, you're not supposed to expect this back. You know, you're supposed to just keep giving. I just don't want to do it anymore. And I don't know how to approach these people. I've been praying about it and just saying, hey, look, no, I'm just, you have to get a job and earn this stuff. I can't just keep giving to you if you're not going to do enough for yourself. You know, I like dealing with these people that, you know, that throw the word in my face, but they don't even know the word. And they just, like I said, they keep thinking I have to, I have to keep helping them because it's the Christian thing. If I don't, I'm not a Christian.

Thank you very much and have a blessed day. There's a little verse in 2 Thessalonians 4 where Paul said, If a man will not work, neither shall he eat. It's a principle of responsibility. Now that assumes a person is able to work and assumes a person can get work, okay? We give to people who are willing to work and who cannot get a job, but we do not continue to give to people who will not work because we are simply helping them establish a pattern that's non-biblical. Remember in Genesis, the first thing God said to the man and the woman is he gave them work. Here's your job.

Here's what you're to be doing. Work is not a curse. Work is a blessing of God. All of us should be working.

Women who stay at home and keep children are working. So don't hear me saying everybody has to have a paying job, but we all should be involved in work. So one of the approaches I've taken with people like that is to say to them, I'm willing to give you enough money for food, but if you can't get a job, then you go volunteer at the hospital, at the rescue mission, at the soup kitchen. You go volunteer.

You're working even though you're not getting paid for it. If they're not willing to do that, to exert energy to go work as a volunteer somewhere, then I say, I'm sorry, but I can't give you any more money because simply giving, giving, giving to people who are not taking responsibility for themselves just helps them establish that as a way of life, and they will not change until the rug is pulled out from under them. So I'm very empathetic with what you're saying, and as a Christian, it doesn't mean that we just give, give, give to everyone. We try to give in a responsible way, a way that will help people take responsibility for themselves. So if we can help them through a transition when they can't get work, that's fine, but when they want work and even won't go volunteer, we're doing them a disservice when we give them money. And what he was talking about with them throwing up, well, you're not a Christian if you don't, is kind of a manipulative thing, isn't it? Yeah, because they found out that if they say that, then his heart is moved, and he wants to be a good Christian, so he gives to them.

So people will say whatever they need to say to get what they want. And if it works one time, then they'll use it again. Well, before we conclude today, let me give you our number where you can leave a question for Dr. Chapman or maybe respond to something we've talked about today. You can make a comment at 866-424-GARY. That's our listener line, 1-866-424-GARY. We'd love to hear from you. And don't forget to check out our featured resource, "The 5 Love Languages" , the secret to love that lasts.

I know it will encourage you, all at fivelovelanguages.com. Well, we hope you've enjoyed this encore presentation of our February Dear Gary broadcast from 2018. Remember, you can ask a question of Gary. Call us at 1-866-424-GARY and leave your message today, 866-424-GARY, and check out our featured resource, "The 5 Love Languages" , the secret to love that lasts at the website, fivelovelanguages.com. Coming up next week, a leadership conversation with Roger Parrott. Should you seize opportunities rather than making a detailed plan to follow, you have to hear the conversation in one week. A big thank you to our production team, Steve Wick and Janice Todd. Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman is a production of Moody Radio in Chicago in association with Moody Publishers, a ministry of Moody Bible Institute. Thanks for listening.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-29 19:25:09 / 2023-05-29 19:44:05 / 19

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime