Several weeks ago, I wrote about talking to a realtor/pastor who works in my building who offered to counsel my husband and me. (see this post)
Well, my husband and I met him for lunch today.
It was awful.
It didn’t start out bad. He told us a little about himself. No problem.
He asked us how we met and how we envisioned what would make a happy marriage and stuff like that. No problem.
But as the conversation went on, my husband would tell half-truths. Or, maybe I should say, he would tell the truth, but not the whole story. And then when I would try to fill in how I viewed it, I would end up looking like the bad guy. Or in this case, the bad wife.
For example, one of the things we discussed was money. At one point, the realtor/pastor asked if we had done Dave Ramsey (link) or anything like that. So my husband said, “I’ve done Dave Ramsey, but she hasn’t.”
Okay, so that’s the truth. He did a Dave Ramsey online course. I refused to take it with him.
And here’s the back story, the part he didn’t tell.
For YEARS I asked my husband if we could do a family budget, and then, when I learned about Dave Ramsey, I asked if we could do Dave Ramsey’s course.
And my husband would not.
Then, suddenly, about three years ago, when I started working and opened my own checking and savings accounts, then, he wanted me to do Dave Ramsey with him.
Why the change, you might ask.
Well, Dave Ramsey advocates that in a marriage, the money is not “his” and “hers;” it is “ours.” To me, this was a way my husband thought he could manipulate me to get his hands on the money I was earning.
For the record, I agree with Dave Ramsey. However, I also believe that there are times when a woman (or maybe a man, depending on the situation) may need to protect herself.
So that was one example of my husband telling the truth, but not the whole truth … and I ended up looking bad.
I did tell the realtor/pastor that for years I had asked my husband if we could do a budget and he wouldn’t, but that by the time my husband wanted to do the class, that I had a bad attitude and wouldn’t do the class with him. The realtor/pastor said, that’s sin. You should have jumped at the chance to take the class with your husband.
When lunch was finished and it was almost time for me to go back to work, the realtor/pastor said something about attending church. Oh, he was telling us that we had to do things together – eat together, spend time together, go on mini-vacations together, go to church together. He stopped and said, you do attend church? My husband said that he attended church but that I didn’t.
Okay, so technically, that is true. But, once again, it is not the complete story. Yes, my husband attends church. He shines at church.
While I do belong to a church, I don’t have a physical congregation to attend and I watch and/or listen to services online.
But then this pastor starts preaching about that if you don’t attend church, you are going to fall away from Christ, etc. (quoting Heb. 10:25) And my husband knows my church situation, but he said nothing to defend me. I was stunned by the preacher and my husband. And then I was offended; this man knows nothing of my relationship with God!
Anyhow… his “assignments” for us are for my husband to find us a Dave Ramsey class to actually physically attend, for me to buy the book “Love and Respect” and its accompanying workbook(s) and for both of us to decide within the next week whether or not we want to council with him (my husband does).
(I’ve read reviews that say that book is heavy on the “respect” stuff with very little on the “love” stuff, but I have not personally read the book. Have any of you?)
So, I ended up feeling shredded and crazy.
I should have known better.
Oh, and “always the gentleman,” in public, at least, my husband paid for my lunch.
Chalk up another point for him.