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Saturday, January 25, 2014

An Interview With My Husband -- 3rd Interview

Controlling Nikka with my sad husband Dong - Dec 2009

In the 'First Interview With My Husband', Dong admitted that during my most controlling years, he wanted to die because life seemed to have no meaning and he could not make me happy.

In the 'Second Interview With My Husband', Dong admitted that because of my controlling attitude which almost always led to my being restless and depressed about our circumstances, he felt like a failure because nothing made me happy.

I must be a sucker for heartache though because though my heart bled after I found out his true feelings in the first two interviews, I still interviewed him a third time. It was like I was bringing on the pain. He even asked, "Do you peaceful wives have to do this? Is it required of you?" I said, "No. This one is for me. I am doing it for me. I need to hear this."

Here then is my third interview with my husband.

Note: Most of the pictures I will use are from my very controlling period (between 2009 to 2011), the time when we had most of our arguments and emotional discussions. The bottom pics will be current with me already as a "peaceful wife".

Nikka : Can I interview you again?

Dong: What? Di pa ba tapos yan? (Is it not over yet?)

I need to ask you some questions still. (I pull out my questionnaire. We both laugh.) :)

Nikka: You told me before that all of the decisions in the past were MY decisions. None of it was
With Therese in her VTR - 2009
yours. How did you feel about that, when I was leading the family and controlling everything?


Dong: Actually, I was not so hurt. I told myself I will just go along with what you wanted to happen. I just felt that my input had no value.

You always told me this: "You are always putting things in YOUR hands!". What did this exactly mean and how did you feel towards me when I was at my most controlling behavior?

Asar. (Irked.) Yabang mo kasi. (You were so arrogant.) Minamaliit mo ako. (You were belittling me.)

(Editor's Note: I was not aware I was belittling him at that time because I was not really saying my thoughts out loud. But actions do speak louder than words, and that was Dong's love language -- through actions. I was a "silent" nagger.)

How did you feel when I would seek your advice but not heed it, but when somebody else told me to do the exact same thing you advised me to do, I would immediately follow that person's piece of advice?

I felt disrespected.

(Editor's Note: This was the first time Dong said the "disrespected" word. He usually called it other things but it was the first time he called it for what it was. Loving passive husbands these days usually do not even know what disrespect is anymore. It just feels to them that they are being attacked. Most wives these days do not even know that they should respect their husbands or how that looks like.)

When we would get into our emotional discussions, there were times when you would suggest that maybe I was better off without you. It was always I who would say, "No. We should stick it out. We are in this "for better or for worse".  Why did it even cross your mind to separate?

Dong with Andre - 2009
Too much disrespect. I had no intention to separate. I know that I was in it "for better or for worse", but I could not find a solution to our problem.

(Editor's Note: Our problem was I was most of the time restless and joyless for some unknown reason.)

To save myself from the situation, since I could not make you happy, I felt that it (separation) was the ONLY SOLUTION. I felt that most likely maiaangat ko naman ulit sarili ko outside of the situation. (I felt that most likely I could regain my sense of self outside of the situation.)




Despite our trials before, was there ever a time that you did not love me or did you always love me?

Kahit asar na asar, mahal talaga kita. (Even if I was very, very irritated with you, I still loved you.) The fact that there was resentment still did not change my love for you.

I never thought you were "better" than me as a person but you never failed to make me feel that,
8 months pregnant with our 3rd - 2009
and not just in money or capability. I was asking myself already, "Is my being too equal in treatment with you wrong?", "Am I being a deterrent to our relationship?" because I have seen how some husbands treat their wives badly to make them (wives) respect them (husbands).


But that would be wrong!  Abusive and oppressive.

Yes. Exactly. For me, Golden Rule dapat. (For me, the Golden Rule should rule.) I also know respect should be earned and I cannot force respect from you. 

(Editor's Note: In this submission journey, I have learned that as a Christian wife, I must respect my husband unconditionally whether he deserves it or not, as the Lord commanded in Ephesians 5:22-24.)

How did you bear with me during those bleak times?

It was not that unbearable... but something happened to me in the process. I didn't blame you for anything. It was MY decision. It was MY proposal for us to get married. But I sort of lost faith...
5 months pregnant with our 3rd - 2009

Did my controlling behavior and my lack of faith in you, affect your faith in God?

Yes. I lost faith. I "learned" from you that in order to be respected, you had to put everything in your hands. You cannot have "blind faith." I used to have that, and you would always look down on me for it. 

(Editor's Note: Between me and Dong, in the beginning of our relationship, it was always Dong who was very hopeful and had much faith that things would work out for the best because God was in control. My controlling behavior and my desire to put things in my hands all the time, made him think that maybe his faith was not real after all, that something was wrong with him for not putting things in his hands.)

I am so sorry, honey. :( Do you think you will have your (old) faith back? :(

The only way that I'd get it back is if something drastic will happen. If something so bad or something so good happens... I have lost faith in Man. I don't know if I would get my faith back. 

At a sports event - 2010
How could you explain that my lack of faith in God  led to your lack of faith in God?

(Editor's Note: I had much faith in myself, not in God. Proof of this was always putting things in my hands, and being controlling. I thought I was just being 'efficient'. I was blind to my sins. I even thought I was deeply spiritual!)

Family of 5 - October 2010
We became one. I became one too with how YOU felt about things. 

(Editor's Note: I would always chide him for having so much faith in God but no outcome to show for his faith. :( I would tell him that "Nasa Diyos ang awa, nasa tao ang gawa." The Lord helps those who help themselves. I was really judgmental towards him then and thought him to be not doing his best. )

I am really sorry Honey. I didn't know about this. You are still hopeful for the future, I hope? :(

Yes, hopeful. Good is good. I have my big doubts. Skeptical.. But it is only now that I am learning to have faith again.. I told you, you won't like my answers. I would not tell you these, if you did not ask. I was keeping them to myself. I did not want to make you feel bad.


But I want to know, Honey. It's okay. Thank you for telling me.


When I was listening and listing down my husband's answers, my heart bled. :( I had an inkling my controlling behavior affected my husband's faith but I did not know just how badly I contributed to his losing faith, to the point of almost being agnostic now. :(
Controlling Nikka - 2010

I knew that my bragging to him about my great faith in God, but with no actions to show for it --  always morose, scared, depressed during those years, only maligned God's Word. :(

I did not walk the talk. He was looking to me to see Christ, but not finding Him, made Dong conclude that religion, Christianity, and even the Bible were not to be trusted. He considered them "proof"  that they were all "gawa-gawa lang" (man-made).

                                     

                                      Matthew 5:16
16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

He said that I was not 100% at fault over his having lost his faith for a long time, but I know that I was mostly, hugely, gravely at fault. :(

I was not a godly wife. I only succeeded in bringing shame to God's Word. So different from what God commanded for wives to do... :(

                                                               Titus 2:5
"to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God."
He even lost the desire to go to weekly masses for those three years. And whereas before he would recite Psalm 91 by heart the moment he woke, up, I just one day noticed that he was not praying that nor any prayer anymore. :(

At our 3rd child, Reuben's baptism - Oct 2010
I may not have single-handedly made him lose his faith, but I sure did everything during those dark years to make him lose faith in himself as a father and the leader of our home, which led to his losing faith little by little in our Heavenly Father.

I was arrogant, self-righteous, judgmental, condescending, negative, gloomy... and yet I never failed to tell him of my GREAT FAITH in God! What a fool I was!!! :(

He is answerable for his own walk with Christ and he would have to answer to God for his own sins, but it is true that since we were one, my lack of real faith (I had more faith in myself than in God) affected his own faith.

                                    Proverbs 22:24-25
24 Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, 25 or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared.
Thing is, we were more than just friends. We were husband and wife. We were one because of the sacrament of marriage. My constant turmoil and discontent and penchant for putting things in my hands led to him "learning my ways". Before he knew it, he was already "ensnared." Instead of me learning how to be faithful to God, he learned how to be faithless from me. It's the case of "a rotten apple spoils the barrel." I was the rotten apple. I spoiled him. I am so ashamed. :(

I thank the Lord for opening up my spiritual eyes to my mountains of sin. I thank the Lord for allowing me to repent for them and for forgiving me. I thank the Lord for giving me a chance to change. I thank the Lord for sharing with me this precious secret given to us wives, on how to experience true joy in marriage. I thank the Lord for giving me a husband, who despite my blatant disrespect and hard-headedness still loved me unconditionally though I disrespected him shamefully. :( He did his part of the equation. I obviously didn't. :(

Dec 2011


                                          Ephesians 5:22-33

22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy,cleansing[a] her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”[b] 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
I am so grateful to the Lord because ever since the start of my submission journey, I have seen Him work in my life, in Dong's life, in our lives. We are starting to go to church together again, with him sometimes initiating it even, whereas I would find myself alone in most Sundays in the past.
At our 4th child, Isabelle's baptism - Dec 2013

I have also seen him happier now more than ever, and hugging me or complimenting me out of the blue. I also see him walking taller now and being more energized to make decisions for the family. It was in my submission that he has started becoming the man God wants him to be. It was in my stepping aside, that God found the opening to talk to his heart.
At Therese's Holy Communion - Dec 2013
Submitted wife and mother - January 24, 2014

All my negativity was hindering him from hearing God's Voice. All my empty faith sharings, just made him detest me and the faith I was "falsely" propagating. I surely did not walk my talk. I preached what I did not practice. I maligned God's Word. :( I am forever repentant to God for that. I was so blind to my sins. :(

I see that there is so much hope for us now.

I feel God's presence in our lives now.

Dec 2013
I cannot make Dong bring back his once solid faith in God. I have already done him much harm in the past with my actions. Forcing him to go back to his old faith would only do more harm than good. My being so dominant was what led him to start losing faith in the first place.

I too am not the Holy Spirit. Only God can make Dong seek Him again. And with me out of the picture, I am hopeful that the Lord will once again woo Dong to that kind of no-holds-barred faith he used to have, pre-me.

It is out of my hands now. I leave it all in God's Able Hands. Him who loves my husband more than I do, and Who knew Dong even before he was born, will call him by name yet again...

However, I can practice one powerful secret that God has given to us wives who want our non-believing husbands to become believers in God (or in my case, to believe again fully in God), and that is through our godly lives.

                                         1 Peter 3:1-5


Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to adorn themselves. They submitted themselves to their own husbands,

I love my family. :) -- January 24, 2014
I love the Lord.

I love Dong.

I have let go and let God.

At this stage of my life, my greatest test to my faith is this: Am I willing to allow God to work in my life and to lead me, through my husband?


                        The answer is YES.
January 12, 2014

I pray that those in the same boat as I was may find it in their hearts to humble themselves and to follow God's Great Design for Marriage. There is no peace and joy quite like it. I assure you, dear sisters... this kind of peace Christ gives is not of this world.
Our home is my ministry. Praise be to the good Lord for His Mercy and Love. - Sick Visitation at Dong's Aunt's house
 January 2014

May we all be richly blessed! :)


2 comments:

  1. Nikka and Dong,
    How THANKFUL I am for your willingness to share these interviews. Other wives NEED to hear this. I believe that Dong's feelings are not unique. I believe he speaks for many husbands who feel they have no voice. Wives will hear another husband sometimes before they will believe their own husband. This exchange between you is MUCH NEEDED. Nikka needs to know the extent of the damage to Dong's heart and soul and to the marriage. And other wives need to understand that their own husbands may well be experiencing the same thing if they as wives have been very disrespectful and controlling.

    I am grateful to you both for sharing - I know this is PAINFUL! But - if we, as God's people - are going to come back to Him and return to His design for us as men, women, husbands and wives - we NEED to see the gravity and truth of the current situation so many are in.

    I know that God will use your story - both of you - to impact many for Christ and to open the eyes of countless wives and to jumpstart healing in marriages around the world.

    I praise God for what He is doing in your lives!!!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. April,

      I am thankful too to Dong's willingness to share his heart with me. I saw in his face the anguish, just recalling how hurt he was during my most controlling years, but he still divulged his soul to me because I wanted to hear of it.

      I see God working in my husband's life again. I find it so beautiful, really. It makes me teary-eyed.

      Dong loved/loves me unconditionally. I disrespected him blatantly. (I didn't know I needed to respect him in the Biblical sense. I just thought tolerating his seemingly wrong behavior was respect enough! What an arrogant woman!) He did his part of the equation, I didn't. :(

      But since the start of the submission journey, I have been seeing miracles happen daily. God's Design for Marriage is really the best! He Who created us and wired us differently knew What He was saying when He made that commandment for husbands to LOVE their wives and for wives to RESPECT their husbands! It would be foolish to believe otherwise. He is our Manufacturer! We just have to follow the Manual! :)

      Sigh. April...How wonderful it is to have you witness His Unfailing Love with me. God's Work in me, in Dong, in our marriage has only just begun. :)

      Praise God for His Love and Mercy! I will sing forever of His Love!

      Thanks dear, precious sister in Christ! :D A warm hug from Manila,

      Nikka


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