Don’t accept sleeping on the couch

Jay Dee

Don’t accept sleeping on the couch

Aug 26, 2014

There is a common joke in married circles about “sleeping on the couch”.  It typically refers to a husband being sent to go sleep on the couch, because he has done something to offend his wife and she has decided he cannot sleep in their

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Don't accept sleeping on the couchThere is a common joke in married circles about “sleeping on the couch”.  It typically refers to a husband being sent to go sleep on the couch, because he has done something to offend his wife and she has decided he cannot sleep in their marital bed as punishment.  Sadly, I know it happens in many marriages.  There are a few problems with this occurrence, and I want to take a quick post to point them out.

It violates Christian principles regarding anger and marriage

When angry, do not sin; do not ever let your wrath (your exasperation, your fury or indignation) last until the sun goes down. Leave no [such] room or foothold for the devil [give no opportunity to him].

– Ephesians 4:26-27

First off, we’re called not to sin in our anger.  While it is not a sin to get angry (even Jesus got angry), it is a sin to hold on to anger, and deciding that your husband is not fit to stay the night in your marriage bed, in my opinion, is holding on to anger.  Secondly, we’re told that in our anger, not to give the devil a foothold, leave him no opportunity to tempt us.  I think this links to 1 Corinthians 7:5:

Do not refuse and deprive and defraud each other [of your due marital rights], except perhaps by mutual consent for a time, so that you may devote yourselves unhindered to prayer. But afterwards resume marital relations, lest Satan tempt you [to sin] through your lack of restraint of sexual desire.

– 1 Corinthians 7:5

A wife who does this is clearly stating that she intends to deprive and defraud her husband of his marital rights, and not by mutual consent, thus leaving both of them open to temptation due to her anger.

The wife asserts her authority over her husband

My wife and I (along with a good percentage, but not all of our readers) believe that the husband has been given, by God, authority over his wife, not the other way around.  But I believe that even my egalitarian readers would agree that a wife should not have authority over husband (as egalitarians believe no one is in authority, or they share authority, depending on how you phrase it).

But sending your husband to sleep on the couch is a clear and blatant exercise in setting the hierarchy in the marriage with the wife on top.  A wife sending her husband out of the marital bed is her establishing that:

  • The house is hers and she decides who sleeps where
  • Her emotions are the standard of truth
  • The marriage is under her control
  • Their sex life is only to be exercised at her desire
  • That her husband is subservient to her (and not in a first among equals sort of way, but in an adult/child sort of way)

In short, I believe who tries this stunt is sinning against God (who set the hierarchy), and her husband (whom she’s supposed to support), and her children (should they exist and be aware of what’s going on, because it’s bad role modeling).

The husband accepts her authority over him

Lastly, and this is the one that really bothers me: the husband accepts the authority if he goes to sleep on the couch!  By agreeing not to get into bed, by making his bed on the couch, he willingly and fully gives in to her authority over him.  This attempt to abdicate his authority over her is both an offense against God, an sin against his wife (whom he should be protecting by leading), it harms the household, and by extension the church and our society by destabilizing the family unit.  This is a massive error in my view.

I have never slept on the couch.  Why?  The rule in my house is: If YOU are too angry to share the bed, then YOU leave.  I’ve never been angry enough to give up my bed.  Simple as that.  I think Christina left once to go sleep on the couch, when we were newly married, because she was mad at me (and a few more times because I was snoring, but that’s another topic).

And really, that’s how easy it is to stop from sleeping on the couch…you don’t go.  Seriously, what would happen if the next time your wife said “Okay buddy, you’re on the couch tonight” you said “No.  If you’re upset, you leave.  I’d rather we discuss it like adults and see if we can find a way to forgive each other.”  Worst case scenario, she does leave, you still aren’t sleeping together…but at least you have the more comfortable bed.

Your Turn

Does this happen in your house?  Do you think you can change the dynamic?  Did it in the past?  If so, how did you change it?  Let us know in the comments below.

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86 thoughts on “Don’t accept sleeping on the couch”

  1. Samantha says:

    OR…..you can fix whatever you did wrong, and then she wouldn’t ask you to sleep on the couch.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      How do you fix a relationship when you aren’t allowed to be in the same room?
      Also, this assumes the husband is wrong…what if the wife is wrong but still tells (not asks) her husband to sleep on the couch.

      1. Samantha says:

        Any reasonable woman will listen to her husband if he sincerely tries to fix a problem. And your post said the husband has done something to offend his wife.

        1. Jay Dee says:

          Agreed, any reasonable woman…which is not the entire set of women…
          And yes, I said the husband has done something to offend his wife…that doesn’t mean he did something wrong.

          1. Samantha says:

            But its most women, contrary to popular belief, we aren’t all raging, hormonal crazies. Most of us are very capable and willing to be level headed, especially with our husbands. And how is doing something offensive to your wife not wrong?

            1. Dan says:

              You could offend your wife by not taking out the trash WHEN she wants you to do it but still do it later. That does not make you wrong. It just says you have different priorities and are on a different schedule than she is. Perhaps she has cleaned everything in the kitchen and getting the trash out too completes the job for her; puts the cherry on top and ties a bow around her efforts. She would like it done NOW and is offended at your lack of immediate response though later when you take the dog for a walk is equally workable. She feels you have no regard for her wants though she shows no regard for your planned schedule. Is SHE wrong, Is HE wrong, or are they both merely offended that neither seems to have regard for their respective schedules. See how either could be offended though not intentionally wronged?

    2. Anonymous says:

      Samantha, your response proves you are an emotionally responsive woman and not the level headed woman you claim to be, why? Because you obviously were hot at reading this and tell him to fix the problem but that is exactly what his last sentence suggests he wants to do, he says he’d rather talk it out like adults.
      From reading other posts as well from others, people clearly have no discernment for context, otherwise asking about an abusive spouse would not have been asked and it seems some are just looking to be offended so as to take issue with the writer.

    3. Anonymous says:

      Samantha! You are so right. Men and wemon need to be equal. I am so tired of the antiquated opinion that the man is always right. It’s bullshit. I do want to be a housewife, don’t get me wrong but, I will work as much as my man, even if I am not making the money. Men need to learn to love and respect their wemon too.

      1. Jay Dee says:

        Who thinks the man is always right? Where are these people? If anything, I see society usually puts the man squarely in the wrong (which also shouldn’t be happening).

      2. No says:

        Are you willing to sleep uncomfortably on the couch everytime YOU do something wrong? That’s equality, right?

        1. Anonymous says:

          Pissed right now. So I went to the uncomfortable couch.

    4. Ghaith Naal says:

      Or you just be mature about it and DEAL with him sleeping on the edge of the bed. Sleeping on the couch serves NO PURPOSE, it shows immaturity and awful communication.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Here is my dilemma ….. What about the husband, because of his horridly abusive behavior, should sleep on the couch?
    I really want to know! – I want to know about the spouse ( in this case husband) who is a manipulative, controlling, raging, abuser.
    Never physically abusive to people but most certainly to things & extremely emotionally & verbally abusive.
    What of this man? This man who calls his wife degrading names, who says she is beneath him & must submit to his constant sexual advances lest she be in outright defiance & sin?
    The man who breaks her things, doesn’t pay bills ( money is NOT an issue) who requires everything to be about him.
    This man would also be the one who continually seeks out pornography & then wants his wife to be like what he sees.
    What do you say to this? Must she roll over so to speak & welcome him just moments after his latest rage?
    I really want to know!!!

    I have followed this site for some time & something is not sitting right with my spirit. I feel strongly this kind of attitude ( sex always & whenever) so easily can become a issue of being used & abused.

    I know there are plenty of men & women who need to lighten up & enjoy this God given gift to marriage.
    But there must be more to the story than… he wants – he gets?
    I don’t believe this is truly what our Lord would want.
    I feel that’s what is being said. I know this is just about sleeping on the couch but it implies that on the couch one would not be available for sex.
    Maybe that is exactly what a spouse needs is to have consequences for dispicable behavior.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      Abuse should not be tolerated. My suggestion would be temporary separation with Christian counseling until he gets his temper/attitude under control. But even this can be done in a loving manner. The point is always to reconcile the marriage if possible. You must do it out of love, in the hopes that they will get better so that your marriage can be healed.

      1. Joe Pote says:

        A woman speaks of her husband’s continual unrepentant aggressive abuse and you advise her to always pursue reconciliation?

        The Bible does not advocate reconciling every human relationship. In fact, both Jesus and the apostles strongly advocated dissolving human relationships that are not pleasing to God or that lead us away from God.

        “Now large crowds were going along with Him; and He turned and said to them,“If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.” (Luke 14:25-26)

        “You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” (James 4:4)

        “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” (1 Corinthians 6:14)

        God, himself, said that he divorce the northern kingdom of Israel because of their repeated unrepentant abuse of covenant vows, “And I saw that for all the adulteries of faithless Israel, I had sent her away and given her a writ of divorce, yet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear; but she went and was a harlot also. ” (Jeremiah 3:8)

        Don’t make marriage into an idol. Only one covenant is eternal…the believer’s covenant with God through Jesus Christ.

        1. Amy says:

          “Don’t make marriage into an idol. Only one covenant is eternal…the believer’s covenant with God through Jesus Christ.”

          Amen, Joe!

          When I finally chose to divorce my abusive husband of 20 years I had an elder from the church I attended at the time tell me that God cared more about keeping the marriage intact and I needed to do everything to assure that happened.
          I told him I believed God cares much more about the people within the marriage and their heart condition.
          We never talked again and I left that church.

          1. Joe Pote says:

            Good for you, Amy!

            And praise God for redeeming you from that abusive marriage and delivering you from the false doctrines of relational idolatry!

            Jesus is such a faithful redeemer and deliverer!

        2. Jay Dee says:

          Hi Joe,

          If you allow me to respond:

          The Luke 14:25-26 is an artifact of Greek language. It’s not about hating your family but rather that you should love God so much that by comparison your feelings towards your family should be as hate. It a relative statement. Of course, Jesus doesn’t want you to hate your family.

          James 4:4 is talking about the”ways of the world”, not applicable here I don’t think.

          1 Corinthians 6:14 is talking about getting into a marriage with a non-believer. Not about continuing one. That is made clear by the next chapter, 1 Corinthians 7:13. “And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him.”

          As for the Jeremiah 3:8, I believe he was using strong language. As you see in the Bible, God never did truly divorce Israel. The entire book of Hosea speaks to this.

          And yes, only one covenant is eternal, the relationship between a believer and God through Jesus Christ, but this is modeled in marriage.

          Sorry, yes, I will always council for reconciliation if possible. That doesn’t mean I think she should continue to place herself in harms way, far from it. But to me, the way I read the bible, divorce is not an option. I understand that may offend some, and I’m sorry for that, but not for my stance.

          Now, as for Amy’s statement, I agree, God cares so much for His people. I don’t believe He care more for marriage than the people, but rather, I think he cares about people, including their marriage, because it is an integral part of our lives. Divorce tends to hurt people for generations, not just the two directly involved. I don’t want you to believe that I think one should stay married simple so they can say they have never been divorced. It goes far beyond that.

          It’s sort of like when someone says to their spouse “you only care about sex”. It’s not about sex, it’s about the relationship. Sex is merely one aspect. Marriage is only one aspect of a person, but it will affect them, positively or negatively, and I believe, based on what I read in scripture, that a reconciled marriage will prove far more positive to the individuals, their progeny, and their community, in the long run.

          If the unbelieving spouse leaves…there is little recourse (1 Corinthians 7:15) because they have no wish to follow God’s will, and thus there is no common ground with which to work.

          And to those people who have already been divorced, I hope this will not be seen as a condemnation, but rather a lament of the hardships you have to endure because of said divorce.

          I hope that is clear.

        3. wolfbane33 says:

          I’m not sure if you’ve not read it or something but Jesus clearly outlines divorce and how it’s not supposed to happen in Mark 10:2-12

          “Some Pharisees came and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” “What did Moses command you?” he replied. They said, “Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce and send her away.” “It was because your hearts were hard that Moses wrote you this law,” Jesus replied. “But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.’ ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” When they were in the house again, the disciples asked Jesus about this. He answered, “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her. And if she divorces her husband and marries another man, she commits adultery.””
          ‭‭Mark‬ ‭10:2-12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

          So you see that divorce was not in his original perfect plan and that he condemns it.

    2. Amy says:

      Anonymous,
      If you are in an abusive marriage you need to leave. Not send your husband to sleep on the couch or you sleep on the couch — LEAVE the house!

      As far as separation and counseling to get his temper/attitude under control — it should be SEPARATE counseling (joint counseling does NOT work in abusive situations) and possibly permanent separation.

      Abuse is an individual problem, NOT a marriage issue. Problems arise in the marriage as a result of abuse. Until the abuser repents and seeks helps for their problem, there will never be a change in the marriage.

      Here are some resources I highly advise you look at:
      http://www.leslievernick.com/blog
      http://cryingoutforjustice.com
      http://hurtbylove.com

      1. Joe Pote says:

        Bravo, Amy!

        Thank you for speaking out…for saying in no uncertain terms what needed to be said!

    3. Joe Pote says:

      Bravo, Anon!

      You verbalized very well what I was thinking as I read this post.

      We cannot prescribe simplistic rules and reasonably expect them to apply to every situation across the complex spectrum of human marital relationships. God’s word does not do that and neither should we.

      Sometimes a spouse needs to be told that intimacy is not going to happen. Sometimes they need to be told cohabitation is not going to happen. Sometimes they need to be told the marriage will not continue due to their unrepentant abusive behavior.

      Thank you for speaking up!

  3. Anonymous says:

    We have been married almost 25 years and regardless of what the disagreement is, we do not sleep apart!

    1. Jay Dee says:

      Awesome!

  4. Sandi says:

    In the past I’ve tried to order him to the spare room , but he’s always told me exactly what you said. I haven’t slept in there in many months, LOL.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      Good for him! And I’m glad you are learning to deal with conflict appropriately.

  5. Lindsay Harold says:

    My husband has never and will never sleep on the couch. I want my man in bed with me. If we have a disagreement, we talk it out. We don’t act like kids who pout and refuse to be near each other.

    Also, I don’t have the authority to tell my husband where he can’t sleep or kick him out of our shared bed. That’s just wrong on so many levels.

  6. Kevin says:

    We’ve tried this…but it has never worked…in 33yrs of marriage. Neither of us can really sleep anyways…eventually the one who was left in the bedroom comes down to the couch and we talk…sometimes until 3 or 4 in the morning, but it always gets worked out. I think most people can afford one late night (or early morning as the case may be) once in a while. Sometimes, the argument can seem cyclical, and this is when you just have to call a truce, and agree to talk about it later, either when cooler heads prevail, or agree to get some help as a couple. Quite often for us, when it has gotten to this last option, and we really start thinking about how we are going to explain our disagreement to a third party, we both come to the realization that what we have been fighting about, really is not that important…and we just both agree to let it slide.
    Has worked for us…but maybe not for all.
    Cheers.

  7. Kim Adams Morgan says:

    Hi, New here and stopping in from Wise Woman. You were my neighbor. I’m also a marriage blogger and focus on God-centered marriages. I don’t believe a husband and wife should sleep apart, though sometimes it happens. Early in my marriage when my faith was lacking, I did tell my husband to sleep on the couch. I was surprised he did. I went out and got him or slept next to him after a couple hours because I missed him. We have come a long way since then. There is a reason you don’t go to bed mad.

    For that Anonymous one who commented about the abusive husband. Your prayers and faithful behavior/actions can change a man’s heart and actions. I have seen this happen. The Lord may be working on both of you and this takes time and trust, but you don’t have to be the focus of his abuse. You have to set up boundaries for you, not for him (you cannot control someone else) and your actions should start to be focused on pleasing God only. Trust me, your husband will notice when his abuse doesn’t phase you anymore and you remain happy and joyful in spite of what he does. He will want to know what’s changed, why you aren’t angry. Soon he will want what you have: A strong relationship with the Lord. Praying for you to be strong and for your marriage to be the beautiful relationship God intended. It can be. God works miracles every day.

    Love this blog.

    1. Amy says:

      “Trust me, your husband will notice when his abuse doesn’t phase you anymore and you remain happy and joyful in spite of what he does.”

      Really???

      God changes hearts — and yes, He hears the prayers of those lifting up the ones who have hardened hearts — but OUR behaviors, responses and such DO NOT change a person’s heart only God can do that.

      And typically, yes, a true abuser does notice that you are trying hard not to let his abuse phase you, but it most often does nothing more than escalate the abuse. The abuser doesn’t suddenly go, “oh, I love you and want what you have — I want Jesus!”

      A victim of abuse has to understand that no amount of change on their part or simply ignoring the issue is going to fix the abuser’s problem.

      Nothing has to hurt God more than seeing His children suffering needlessly by continuing to allow one’s self to be hurt over and over. There is nothing righteous about that.
      True suffering means we are standing up for what is good and right, and a man (or woman) abusing their spouse is NOT right.
      When the victim takes a stand to stop the abuse and seek a Godly marriage that person will often suffer as the abuse may escalate and the marriage dissolves.

      The one thing I do agree with is that she does not have to be the focus of her husband’s abuse. Correct! Her focus should always be on God first, seeking His direction and often times that means leaving the situation (hopefully only temporarily) to remove herself from the destruction her husband is determined to bring to their marriage.

      We have to remember that it is the abusive spouse who has chosen to break the marriage covenant. And we need to stop putting the sole responsibility of keeping a marriage together on the victim’s shoulders and place the burden of change on the abuser.
      It saddens me how so backwards this becomes — I know first hand because the same thing happened to me when I said no more to abuse after 20 years and suddenly it was all on my shoulders to make that destructive marriage survive. My abusive ex basically got off scot-free while many people watched to see if I would do the ‘right’ thing and welcome him back into our home.
      In the end, I did do the right thing and focused all my attention on God — and I’ve never looked back with regret.

      1. Mik says:

        Hello Amy. I am not married and am only 21. I am in the process of becoming a Christian marriage counselor. My mother was in an abusive marriage while I was growing up. She was with him for 4 years and then he left her and she divorced him for abandonment. So I understand abuse issues, maybe not on the same level as you or my mother; but I am not speaking from complete ignorance.
        I have a close friend of the family who was abused by an alcoholic husband also. She wrote a book called Waiting for His Heart http://www.amazon.com/Waiting-For-His-Heart-Lessons/dp/0802405908 . In this book she shows how she held to the belief that divorce is only acceptable to God within certain parameters and leaving him due to abuse isn’t one. She separated from Him and prayed for him throughout the whole process. They did get back together after his recovery process.
        Another book I would recommend is Hurt People Hurt People http://www.amazon.com/Hurt-People-Healing-Yourself-Relationships/dp/1572930160/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1414193405&sr=1-1&keywords=hurt+people+hurt+people+by+sandra+wilson . This book shows how you can feel empathy and compassion for those that hurt you or others, by realizing the vicious spiral they are in from past hurts.
        I am not saying that I do think or don’t think that God would permit divorce under abusive conditions. What you, I, the makers of this blog, or any one else thinks is of utter unimportance. It is what God thinks that is important. So if I was in an abusive situation, I would pray and ask God where he wants me. I certainly wouldn’t let it continue. I would protect myself as well as create physical distance. But I am unsure if I would divorce him.
        Clearly you did not just run for the idea of divorce because you stayed in that marriage as long as you did. So I am in no way condemning you or saying you were wrong. These are just some of my thoughts when I was reading your comments. I hope none of this came off as a know-it-all or anything. I am a humble, single, 21-year-old who hopes to have a marriage and a business around that some day. So my knowledge is limited.

        (To the makers of the blog… I love it and occasionally look at this blog in hopes of using any of your information some day for my marriage. I am on fire for marriage and am excited that there are other Christians with that attitude too.)
        God Bless,
        Mik

    2. Jay Dee says:

      Hi Kim,

      Welcome to the community! Watch your step 🙂 This discussion has drifted into dangerous territory.

      I agree, we can change people with our modeling of Christ’s love. Of course, sometimes that modeling has to be done from arms length in the case of abuse.

      1. Joe Pote says:

        No, we cannot change people!

        We can sometimes influence them, but we can never change them.

        Only God can change a human heart…and even God will only change their heart if they ask Him to. He will not violate their free will.

        For an abuser (or any sinner) who does not want to change, there is no hope for change.

        1. Jay Dee says:

          Well, that’s a large discussion isn’t it? Do we change people? On some levels: yes, we cannot help but to change them. If I walk in front of you, then you have seen me. Your eyes take in different light, your brain registers the pattern, memories are formed. In that sense, I have changed you, and that’s only on a very basic level.

          Particularly with spouses, we can make large changes over time, intentionally or not.

          But, can we force change in our spouse. Can we make them do what we want…no. No we can’t…Thank God.

      2. Amy says:

        We can never ‘change’ someone else. Can we influence them or show them God through us? Yes. But only God can change a person’s heart, which is the critical step needed for a person to truly repent and change their ways.

        And really?? Dangerous territory?? Wow, just wow…

        1. Jay Dee says:

          True, but then it is our choice to influence or not. Thus in some small way, we are affecting the chance of change then. Can we say that?

          As for dangerous territory, I just meant the discussion can get a little … passionate, and for some (particularly introverts), it can be a bit…daunting. I’m not sure how you took it, I don’t understand what you meant by “Wow, just wow…”.

          1. Amy says:

            I’m an introvert. Not sure what that has to do with a ‘passionate’ discussion. LOL

            I guess my wow comment was directed more at your statement of “watch your step!”

            I know I come across very strong re: abuse in marriage and that is because of my own personal journey through it. I do not mean to condemn others in their thinking, but I get concerned that there is this simple thinking among Christians that praying harder and respecting and submitting more will somehow magically heal someone who has abusive problems.
            To read statements which seem to put all the work of salvaging an abusive marriage directly on the wife (or husband if he is the abused) does bother me — BTDT. A woman should never be made to feel that she just needs to stay and basically ignore the abuse — staying happy and joyful despite the abuse — in hopes that her husband will suddenly stop being abusive and turn to God when he realizes she is not going to let him get to her.

            I’m all for marriages staying intact but not at the expense of the health and welfare of those being abused.
            God hates violence in marriage and the breaking of faith which often leads to divorce.

            1. Jay Dee says:

              The “watch your step” was not in reference to you. I’m sorry you felt it was.

              I understand your reaction, but I think you have misinterpreted a thought. It is not that we feel that the abused spouse has the burden of changing the abuser, but rather that the abused spouse is generally the only spouse we have contact with.

              It’s the same sort of dynamic (though not the same intensity) when dealing with refused spouses. Ideally we would tell the refuser to stop refusing, to have and enjoy sex and fulfill their marriage…but we don’t get to talk to the refuser usually. We only get to talk to the refused. So what do we tell them? We tell them to work on their marriage, to work on their relationship with God, to better themselves, to practice objective independence, and all that stuff. Why? Is the burden theirs alone in the marriage? By no means! Both spouses share the burden, but just because one drops their load, doesn’t mean the other gets to. And so, the message is the same to both: work hard for your marriage, but we know it is falling on deaf ears on one end (if it ever reaches them).

              Often my children squabble and they invariably end up saying “but she ….” as a rationalization for why they retaliated. But the answer is always “it is not okay to hit!”, regardless of who started, regardless of whether child A hit child B first, or the other way around, they aren’t allowed to hit each other.

              So, to extrapolate and apply to marriage, it’s not OK to stop working on your marriage. It doesn’t matter if spouse A started it, or spouse B did. They are both supposed to try to improve the marriage. Now, they aren’t children, so we can’t send them to their rooms until they decide to behave, so the only recourse is to tell both spouses “work on your marriage”, knowing that only one spouse is likely to listen.

              And yeah, that means that the burden will rest on the one willing to make the marriage work and improve it. Is it fair? NO!…but life isn’t fair.

              Keep in mind, no one is suggesting one should continue to allow themselves to be abused, far from it. We just aren’t advocating for divorce.

      3. Kim Adams Morgan says:

        I guess so. 🙂 I didn’t recommend for anyone to stay in the abusive situation, 100% agree that it should be done at arms length many times. I have had many friends go through this and a sister. I lived this and was right in the middle of it more than a few times, so I know. It nearly brought our entire family down.

        I said “You don’t have to be the focus of the abuse.” Many times, God uses us women to deliver a message to our men with our faith. When they see us modeling Jesus, they get it. I didn’t say WE change hearts. God is the only one who does. I said “God works on people at different times.” Often the wives are the vessels God uses.

        It is still absolutely the abusive spouse’s job to do the responding and make the needed changes…

        I am sorry, I’m an introvert and the words are few sometimes. I hope this clarifies.

        1. Jay Dee says:

          No need to be sorry! I think you have done a good job of stating your views. Thank you for participating and not being afraid to come back and clarify!

  8. dennis says:

    I have never been sent to the couch- specifically. Rejected for sex- yes, but that’s a whole different discussion.
    However, I have relegated myself to the couch on my own accord more than once. Usually because I am angry or sulking and can’t sleep where I am. Usually, I’d end up on the couch, praying, thinking and eventually getting to sleep. I would also usually make it back to the bed before sunrise.
    I have come to the decision that my moving to the couch in these circumstances may be the wrong way to handle the situation. The problem is that not all arguments / offenses / irritations even, can be handled inside a few hours discussion or even in 24 hours. I don’t think the scripture of not letting the sun set on your anger is absolutely literal. Because if it were, then the fact that somebody has to stay up all night to resolve an issue means they already have violated that verse. It is hyperbole, I believe, simply meaning to not allow it to linger. Which means a forced separation – even for a night – violates the principle. It illustrates that at least one party has refused to even approach the subject of reconciliation and has unilaterally made the decision to cease negotiation. JD made that perfectly clear in this article. He is spot on!
    The statements about leadership and submission are spot on in my understanding of scripture as well. The mention of abusive husbands by a wife in obvious distress does not speak to this topic because an abusive husband is not following scriptural guidance in the first place and is in sin – once again – a whole different topic.
    To respond to an offense with a reciprocal offense is certainly not productive. No all offenses are intentionally done. If the offended party cannot stand back and recognize an unintentional offense without adjudicating punishment, then the “offended” party is in the wrong more so than the offender. I have offended my wife, often. Most of the time, I did not specifically intend to hurt her. I was simply being selfish for a moment. That selfishness goes both ways in most any argument or incidence of offense. Someone is upset because they didn’t get their way – often both. So we run off and pout, or in this case, get sent off to pout. What you reckon is going to come from that? Nothing good I assure you.
    I would ramp up the discussion with this – wives – if you are in the habit of using sex to manipulate your husband and yield control of him with that as a weapon – YOU ARE SINNNING AGAINST GOD AND YOUR HUSBAND! It is no different than a husband using passive/aggressive behavior of clamming up and not talking to her as a method of attack. (trust me, this is not productive either!)

    Thanks JD for opening this topic up with some truth!

    1. Jay Dee says:

      Oh, I don’t think all conflicts need to be settled before bed. Sometimes they take longer. But you can have conflict without anger. I think being able to let go of your anger so you can address the conflict rationally is an important skill.

      1. Anonymous says:

        Absolutely! And a skill that is very difficult to master – at least for me. “Be angry and sin not.” – if it weren’t possible, it would not have been written. Anger is not necessarily a sin, but what we do with it is often sinful.

  9. Dan says:

    I JUST NOW thought of this as I was beginning to comment so it may have a hole of two in it but I want to put it out there for consideration. Isn’t it interesting how going to “sleep on the couch” seems to be metaphorical of God and Adam and Eve? Let’s ignore the selfish aspect of pouting for the moment and the spite involved which is not God-like at all and not part of my point.

    God desired someone to fellowship with in the cool of the evening in the garden. His created company disobeyed Him. They were booted from the garden so they would not eat of he Tree of Life and were further punished by being denied His direct company since they represented sin at that point and he could no longer look upon them. They were denied direct fellowship with Him and had to go through priests and offer sacrifices. We now can have that communication through the Holy Spirit due to Christ and his work on the cross. Okay, now the set-up is out of the way.

    Marriage is supposed to be a model of the relationship Christ has with His church (us). Based on the Eden experience, it seems sadly “normal” that when we are offended by our spouse, we innately know that denial of fellowship is the worst punishment. It may manifest as sexual refusal by the wife, and stonewalling by the husband but both are denials of fellowship. When offended in marriage, we seem to forget about Christ and run all the way back to the lesson of the garden and try to play God in our marriage and judge and punish instead of follow Christ’s example and heal. Deep inside of us we know that denial of fellowship is the ultimate punishment and in our pain we freely exercise punishment instead of asking for enlightenment and healing. We choose to be gods instead of follow Christ.

    If my theology is sloppy, I apologize. I wanted to put it out there before it got pushed aside by life and I forgot to address it so I haven’t done much deep thought about it. I think the core proposal is an accurate observation of what “sleeping on the couch” really represents though.

    1. Joe Pote says:

      Dan, I like where you’re going with this and agree that much can be learned in looking at how God handles relationships.

      Don’t forget, though, that the Bible also teaches not everyone will be reconciled in relationship with God…not even of those who profess to be Christians.

      “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’” (Matthew 7:21-23)

      Not every human relationship should be reconciled. Only our covenant with God through Jesus Christ is eternal.

      1. Jay Dee says:

        But we’re not talking about “every human relationship”, we’re talking about marriage, which is a covenant, akin to that between God and His people.

        1. Joe Pote says:

          Yes, and Jesus was speaking of covenant in the referenced passage in Matthew 7.

          His declaration, “I never knew you,” is using covenant terms…the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew word translated as “knew” in Genesis 4:1, “Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain…”

          Jesus was saying, in effect, that swearing covenant vows (saying “Lord, Lord”) is insufficient and must be followed up with the keeping of the vows (doing the will of the Father). For those who claim covenant protection while failing to enter relationship in keeping the covenant vows, He will deny ever being in covenant with them, “I never knew you.”

          Covenant is about faithfully and wholeheartedly living out the covenant vows in loving relationship. If one covenant partner repeatedly willfully and unrepentantly violates those vows, inficting harm on the one they have sworn to protect and cherish, then the covenant is broken.

          God does not continue in relationship with those who reject His covenant…nor does He ask that of us.

          1. Jay Dee says:

            It sounds like you are describing a contract. A contract is a two way obligation between two parties. If party A doesn’t live up to their end, party B doesn’t need to live up to theirs.

            But marriage is not a contract, it’s not even a covenant. It is two reciprocal covenants. Each spouse says to the other “I will love you”, regardless of the other’s actions (“For better or worse, sickness and health…”). This is our relationship with God. God says to us, “I will love you, no matter what”, and we say the same back. But while we fail, God doesn’t say “well, you didn’t live up to your end”.

            So, just because a spouse does not live up to their end of the “deal”, that doesn’t give the right to break your vow, because your vow was independently made, or at least, it should be.

            And I disagree, God definitely does continue in relationship with those who reject His covenant. He is always trying to reconcile, always trying to reconnect. And at the last, He will still decide, in love, whether to accept that person into heaven or not. Because for some people, heaven would be a hell to them.

            1. Joe Pote says:

              You speak of covenant and contract as though they are two separate biblical terms with different meanings. They’re not.

              In the biblical text and in the cultures of the Bible, all contracts were referred to as covenants.

              As to your thesis that God continues in relationship with those who reject His covenant, I again quote the words of Christ:

              “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’” (Matthew 7:21-23)

              I don’t dispute that these words of rejection are said in love and sorrow…but it is definitely NOT continuance of relationship.

              1. Jay Dee says:

                I’m not speaking about a biblical contract, I’m speaking of a modern day contract. But there is a very clear distinction between a contract and a covenant. Take a look at Jonathan’s covenant relationship with David. He made it without any expectation of return, merely because he loved him. It was a one-way covenant. Same with God’s covenant with Abraham. In a contract, both parties would walk between the pieces of meat, but only God’s representation did. I disagree, even in the Bible, there is a clear distinction between a one-way covenant and a two way contract.

                As for God continuing the relationship, of course, there is a point where probation closes, when the individual will no longer exist. At that point, a relationship is not possible, because a relationship requires to individuals. So, that’s a moot point.

                1. Joe Pote says:

                  “I’m not speaking about a biblical contract, I’m speaking of a modern day contract.”

                  Then you are confusing the two, because every reference I gave was of a biblical covenant. It makes no sense to tell me I am speaking of a modern contract when the discussion is a biblical text.

                  As to the covenant between David and Jonathan, it was initiated by Jonathan but it was entered into by both parties. It was NOT a one-way covenant, but was binding on both parties.

                  “Then Jonathan and David made a covenant…” (1 Samuel 18:3)

                  “So the two of them made a covenant before the Lord.” (1 Samuel 23:18)

                  “Then Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, since we have both sworn in the name of the Lord, saying, ‘May the Lord be between you and me, and between your descendants and my descendants, forever.’” So he arose and departed, and Jonathan went into the city.” (1 Samuel 20:42)

                  2 Samuel 9 tells how David honored his covenant vows to Jonathan even after Jonathan’s death, by his adoption of Mephiboseth.

                  1. Jay Dee says:

                    What I meant was that your description sounded like a contract, rather than reciprocal covenants.

                    As for David and Jonathan, in 1 Samual 18:3, Jonathan makes a one-way covenant, no expectations, “because he loved him as himself”. 2 Chapters later David and Jonathan make reciprocal covenants. Those are different events.

                    1. Joe Pote says:

                      You seem to have an unusual understanding of covenant that doesn’t fit well with what I read in both literature and the Bible.

                      You might want to spend sometime reading the many biblical texts speaking of violating covenant, treacherous abuse of covenant, breaking covenant, or being faithless in covenant.

                      These texts only make sense with the understanding that covenant is entered into by both parties, with both parties swearing oaths to the terms of the covenant (whether spelled out or implied).

                      May God richly bless you, as you study His word.

                    2. Jay Dee says:

                      We shall have to agree to disagree then. But of course, I will continue to study.

                2. Joe Pote says:

                  I forgot to include this reference.

                  These are Jonathan’s words to David, in 1 Samuel 20:14-15:

                  “And you shall not only show me the kindness of the Lord while I still live, that I may not die; but you shall not cut off your kindness from my house forever, no, not when the Lord has cut off every one of the enemies of David from the face of the earth.”

                  Clearly, Jonathan did NOT make his covenant with David with no expectation of return. Quite the opposite in fact. Jonathan was very bold in both holding David accountable to the covenant and asking David to renew the covenant vows.

  10. happywife says:

    Yea, I’ve never quite understood the whole “send him to sleep on the couch” thing. I have never once sent my husband to sleep on the couch. In fact, there have been times when we have been in conflict and he will get up to leave and I don’t let him… or I follow him to the living room and say “if you’re sleeping out here, then so am I!” Maybe that is a bit controlling too, but I feel that we need to at least be in the same bed together and be willing to at least let our feet touch. LOL In fact, that is usually my way of saying, “I’m pissed, but I still love you” when I put my foot over to his. No, sex doesn’t happen when we are in an emotionally heated conflict, but staying in the same bed to me is symbolic of “for better or for worse.” And in the morning, we both feel much better. We may not have worked everything out, but we wake up together knowing that we will survive another day, and that our marriage is stronger than the conflict we might be facing.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      I think that’s awesome to chase your husband when he’s upset, I don’t think it’s controlling, but rather showing your intent to reconcile.

      And yeah, you don’t always need to solve every conflict immediately, you just need to agree that you are going to work through it.

    2. Spiritwalker142 says:

      My wife also chases my when I have tried to sleep on the couch. She has never let me. I must admit those time have been when I’m mad at myself.

  11. FarAboveRubies says:

    Wow, there are many comments here!
    Does my beloved husband get sent to the couch? No way, Jose! Never. I think it’s demeaning to do this. How does that show him respect? It does not. It’s sin IMHO.
    When my children attended ECFE (Early Childhood and Family Education) we would break away from our children. The parents went to a different room to talk about problems dealing with the family, and how to solve them. Long story short, I had a gal describe how her husband would accidentally leave the toilet seat up after using it. She proceeded to tell us how she “trained” her husband to break him from leaving that seat up. She would grab a dixie cup, fill it with toilet water, and proceed to walk over to her husband and throw it in his face…literally! She, then, told him, “Now you know what it’s like when you leave that seat up for me.” Seriously! How demeaning! I doubt she is still married.
    I love how happywife will not allow her husband to run away. Cool! You are telling him you love him no matter what. I wish we were neighbors. I bet we would get along great. 🙂
    I would also like to mention, since it was brought up earlier, something about submission and headship. I believe that submission reflects a condition of the heart. You can’t make your wife be submissive. It has to be in her heart. Just like the husband’s headship must be in his heart. Both positions need a good dose of love and respect both ways.

  12. El Fury says:

    Is there something special about access to the bed, or would folks respond similarly to other “punishments” the wife might give to her husband? For example: if husband don’t put his dirty clothes in the hamper, wife doesn’t wash them with the rest of the laundry.

    How about if the roles are reversed, and it’s the husband “punishing” the wife for, in his mind, bad behavior?

  13. libl says:

    I’m the wife and I am the one who ends up on the couch or in the doghouse because of some offense or anger hubby bears towards me, usually over an.assumption or miscommunication.

    Since you say hubby is my authority, am I supposed to obey and slink off to my punishment zone?

    I have never sent hubby to the couch, though a couple of times he assumed I wanted him there when I did not.

  14. Jessica says:

    Ha ha. No sleeping on the couch in our marriage. Although, there were a couple of times before I learned the sweet comfort of wax ear plugs that I resigned myself to the couch for a portion of the night in hopes to get some sleep. Oddly enough, the faint snoring of my spouse (with my wax ear plugs) is actually kinda comforting now.

  15. Spiritwalker142 says:

    Starting our 4th year of marriage I slept on the couch quite a bit. I had put on some weight, no much but apparently just enough. Then I got my CPAP and the only time we haven’t slept in the same bed (barring business trips) was one vacation when the father in law rushed us out of the house and I left it on the bed. Apparently the neighbors complain if I don’t use it.

  16. Chris Tian says:

    I’ve stopped doing this, I realised it was so wrong of me and no matter how angry I am we sleep together which actually increases the chances of making up quickly and we all know how good that can be. 😉

  17. LatterDay Marriage says:

    It should be kept in mind that the era where sitcoms had wives sending husbands to sleep on the sofa also had husbands spanking their wives to punish them for misbehavior. Not great role models for either spouse.

    I will admit however there have been times (two times I think) where I was so angry with my wife or hurt by her that I could not sleep in the same bed as her. I got in the bed, but there was no way I could sleep there or anywhere else the way I felt. I understand the reasoning in saying I should have talked it out with her, but that wasn’t the time. If I had tried that I know I would have said things I would regret later. I did eventually talk those things out with her, later when I got myself to a point where I could talk about them without having my emotions get the better of me.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      Sitcoms still have wives sending husbands to the couch. At least, the last time I watched sitcoms they did. But, I don’t think I ever saw one with a husband spanking his wife…

      Now, if you are angry enough that you have to leave, that’s a different story than being sent out.

      1. LatterDay Marriage says:

        Spanking was about as regular and occurrence on I Love Lucy as being sent to the couch was on Bewitched. Guess I’m showing my age. We canceled cable several years ago.

  18. browny says:

    This post is so painful to read when you see that god makes it clear about divorce,separation,abuse and sexual manipulation (which is rebellion towards god authority). We live in a different times now. When it comes to abuse one must be clear. If some one is tearing a person down with words and actions wit out any basis it must be dealt with. But on the other hand there are so many so called independent christian woman who have strong characters like a man in the american christian society. Lets keep it real. We are now living in a post feminist movement that has redefined our roles in the world and now in the church. All women are not alike and all men are not alike. Majority people that I have consulted in marriages had two forms of abuse. 1) real abuse that need to be dealt with 2) Made up abuse because when it comes to submission to gods authority which is the man, it is a no-no…this second point is 80% of my cases. If we do not see the man of god as the woman’s head and that she is to submit to him in everything. Our western christians will not only see the divorce rate higher,But a climb in perversion,false doctrine and wordily wisdom which is satan himself. The last point of my finding of the past 20 years in seeing sexual issues in christian marriages is false statements from the world. : Men always want sex. and women barley have a sex drive. This is so false and deadly to here christian men and women say this. Sex therapist will tell that women lust more than men, but in a different way. I read a survey that showed women have different tools to masterbate with themselves without their husbands. They normally come to sessions and say they are not in to having sex with their husbands because they are not into it..which is a lie. Men who master bate and get consoling normally is challenged about pornography and lust. and in a lot of cases lose their spouse and is removed from church leadership. But on the other hand women don’t talk about masterbation as much. and often gets a pass because it is not dealt with as a sin..There are scripts to back up these points, let me know what you guys think?

  19. puzzled says:

    My husband is on the couch tonight for betrayal… an apology doesn’t fix pain but, its a start.. My husband didn’t even do that much though. Instead he mocks my hurt. He went downstairs on his own accord, i told him it’s fine… in the end if we slept side by side i wouldnt have slept. His pride comes first, second and last. If i show emotion its weakness to him and he pulls away… my husband grew up christain, believes in god but justifies his own actions and judges me… i don’t claim to know anything at this point other than… you’re classifying this to deal with trivial matters mostly… In the end, i dont care anymore.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      In the end, i dont care anymore.

      And that is what will end a marriage. Not sleeping on the couch, not betrayal, not lack of apology. The breaking of a marriage vow starts with “I don’t care”.

      in the end if we slept side by side i wouldnt have slept.

      And close behind it is an inability to forgive.

      Yes, your husband has some issues to work on in himself, but whether he’s willing to or not, you have some issues to work on in yourself that I think would make a huge difference, not only in your relationship to your husband, but to others, and especially God. Because if you can’t muster up the strength to care or forgive… Well, there are a lot of verses about uncaring and unforgiving people, and that’s not what I’d want to be classified as.

      1. puzzled says:

        I forgave him right away, i even fetched him to come back to bed. Again, he left on his own accord. I meant earlier i was exhausted and didnt care to explain further… this is a downer if you call that support.. i can handle wake up calls but its my husband whose pride and aggressive nature im dealimng with. Yet im the problem thatll end our marriage? I did not think my words were confusing.. when im the only one keeping faith, positivity and praying.. You judged to quick.. assuming makes us both look bad. Just disregard my messages.

        1. Jay Dee says:

          I can handle wake up calls

          I’m glad to hear that.

          im the problem thatll end our marriage? I did not think my words were confusing.. when im the only one keeping faith, positivity and praying..

          Sorry, I did misunderstand your words. I didn’t not realize your heart was perfect his was the only one left to work on.
          In any other case, I’d respond that I cannot speak to your husband, only to you, so I offered some suggestions where you could improve, since you were the one looking to see what could be done. After all, you can’t change your spouse. But, obviously that’s not needed here since your spouse carries all the sin in this marriage.
          I hope my words are not confusing 🙂

  20. ashley says:

    So what the husband gets to tell his wife to sleep on the couch but it can’t be the other way around. Christ also said to love your wife as he has loves the church. If you offend your wife I’m sure she is mad when will again talk to you and asking your husband to sleep on the couch isn’t demanding it’s because you would rather be apart and think instead of saying something you would regret

    1. Jay Dee says:

      No, you misunderstood. What I was saying is that the person who is mad should be the one to suffer. If they can’t control their anger, then they should be the one to suffer. I cannot make my wife happy, it’s not in my power. I can’t control her emotions. But she can. Adults need to recognize that while they have emotions and they need to be acknowledged, they shouldn’t rule us.

      To decide to kick a spouse out of the bed is to decide that your emotions are more important to you than your spouse. So, yeah, I think the angry spouse should go sleep on the couch until they stop throwing an adult tantrum.

  21. stayrighteousplease says:

    women who call their husband abusive are sick and weak. To stay in an abusive marriage damages kids. I have gut feelings most women only justify their own bad behaviors by calling their spouse abusive. I have yet to come across an abusive person that is not in jail or prison. Except trump jk lol. May any wife that lives feeling abused try to forgive and forget or move out. A loving husband does not deserve her forever devious wrath. Or at least seek professional counseling so she may accept any faults of her mate and treat him with her utmost respect love and praise and thankfulness just as god wants of all of us man and woman.

  22. Ashley says:

    What is a Christian married women supposed to do/think when her husband is emotionally unavailable and CHOOSES the couch over the bed? I’d prefer no argument go unsolved before bed but he’d rather sleep it off and forget it ever happened. He has no expectation of solving an argument/debate before bed …..something I believe is a sin as he gives in to his anger and chooses to “forget about it” by going to sleep instead of willfully taking his wife’s feelings into consideration AT ALL. It leaves me anxious and frustrated and unable to sleep! He seems comfortable with leaving me “emotionally high and dry,” and attempting to talk just makes him retract even more. It’s like I have to play the opposite game to get my husbands attention and I’m tired of playing games. He’s 34 and I’m curious when do men actually grow up? ….or does it take loss to make them recognize hindsight they had a catch? It feels emotionally draining to “trick” my husband into caring about me. Ugh.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      I think you can’t make your spouse do anything.

      I would guess what you mean by not going to bed angry is this verse:

      In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry – Ephesians 4:26

      However, it doesn’t say you need to resolve the conflict. You can’t always resolve conflict in a single day. You can choose not to give in to anger though, and it sounds like you are holding on to your anger. That, I’d argue, is a sin that has to be dealt with. It’s not a sin to get angry, but to hold on to it, that’s another matter.

      So, what do you do? Forgive. Accept that you have a conflict. Conflicts aren’t bad. How you deal with them is what determines whether it’s good or bad. And just because your husband gets upset and angry doesn’t mean you have to. Try this. The next time you get in an argument/debate before bed, pause it and say something like, “Look, we’re not going to resolve this right now, and I don’t want this to damage our relationship. Let’s go to bed, sleep on it, and maybe we’ll both be more clear-headed tomorrow.”

      How does that sound?

      Chasing him down to force him to deal with the conflict isn’t going to help anyone. It just makes him retreat, and you angry.

  23. Kevin Grant says:

    As I understand it, the article by Jay Dee was about dealing with an argument, and why women should not exercise authority over their husbands, which is a clear principle stated in Scripture. It was not about serious abuse or violence. So some are reading far more into it than what Jay actually said. No, a man should not allow himself to be banished from the bed because of a difference of opinion or minor disagreement – and in my opinion if he is wimpy and sleeps on the couch he will soon lose the respect of his wife, who thought she married a man.

    But in cases of serious abuse, not minor arguments, then no-one is suggesting that the woman does not have the right to protect herself by establishing distance between herself and the abuser.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      And if a husband sends his wife to the couch, someone needs to give him a time out, because he’s acting like a child.

  24. VB says:

    I made a CHOICE to sleep on the couch EVERY night and have been for about 6-8 months now. I’ve just had my 30th anniversary so understand this has been a long, enduring road.
    I’ve finally discovered that my wife has the abusive personality and there’s not much I can do to change that. All the standard traits exist within her. My older son has studied a bit within psychology so I hinted around to him about it just to see if he had this insight as well. I finally and plainly made the stated, “I think you mom may be an abuser.” He quickly replied, “Well yeah… you didn’t know this?!” Of course I could easily see a pattern but I never attached a title to it. It strange to me. If you met and talked with us both you’d NEVER have any clue that she is an abuser. What I find even more peculiar is that she reads and studies the bible nearly every day of her life! The third weird part is she actually considers me to be the abusive one within our relationship: I find that to be a slap in the face. I am the only one always working on the relationship. I am the initiator. If intimacy happens it’s because I perform magic for her.
    I’m learning that this seems to be common place with many, many marriages these days. Yes, it appears to be the norm. So when I read the words “abuse” within a relationship, I really have to question what the person means and want clarity. My wife may tell you that I’m abusive and make too many demands from her. In reality, I want a relationship. I want PURE intimacy. I want witness that she actually DESIRES me. I want her to stop yelling at everyone in the household. I want to be loved. I want affection. I WANT TO FEEL COMFORTABLE ENOUGH TO SLEEP IN MY OWN BED!~!
    The key thing about an Abuser is that 1- it’s always someone else’s fault that they behave with negative retaliation. 2- they cannot see within them self to recognize that THEY are the abuser. They don’t know they’re the abuser.
    I’ve made many mistakes over the years due to my rebellion but I do NOT abuse yet she has labeled me as such.

  25. So..... says:

    My husband has been on the couch for over a week. I asked him to sleep on the couch after he revealed to me that he had been watching porn and masturbating for the last month or so…tbh..it wasnt that hard since he had spent so much time there all on his own anyway….this has been an ongoing issue since we have been married…and something that 1) has ruined our sex life and 2) something he admittedly stated he struggled with since his younger years…. So what do i do when i am being denied the love i desire from my husband? Do i just keep begging? Or do i just act like his issues arent killing our relationship and my attraction to him? I didnt give him a couch sentence…but he has been there for over a week…we havent discussed anything…and in the past ive been the one to come and talk…but not this time..i feel like if you want it to work you will make it happen…im open whenever he is ready..if ever. But he seems content on couch with his video games and fast food

    1. Jay Dee says:

      Just to be clear: Your solution to him distancing himself from you emotionally and sexually is to distance yourself from him physically? That seems backwards to me, but I completely get why you did it. You’re hurt and don’t want to be near him.

      I suggest the “in me or on me” rule. Approach your husband with this rule:
      He is allowed to orgasm whenever he feels the need, so long as it’s in you or on you.
      Some caveats: He has to have some self-control. Middle of a church service is not okay. He wouldn’t be watching porn then anyways.
      But if you are at home, doing nothing important, why not take a few minutes to help him? Make it fun.

      The alternative if that he’s going to keep sleeping on the couch. This distance will grow, and eventually the marriage will be over. Don’t let that happen. Change the rules. Do something to help his addiction rather than punish him for failing and giving him another reason to seek relief, and an excuse to rationalize his continued bad behaviour.

  26. LB says:

    I was able to sleep in the same bed with my wife until we starred having children. She doesn’t want me to sleep with her because I snore. She’s told me to leave the bed several times. Now I sleep on a couch in the basement. The ONLY time I’m allowed to be in the same bed with her is when she wants sex. Im over it…I have a bad shoulder( torn rotator cuff) just repaired 2 months ago. Guess where I sleep? It doesn’t start with a b. It starts with a c. Still…
    Thoughts anyone?

    1. Jay Dee says:

      Doesn’t sound like you’re over it if you’re asking for people’s thoughts.

      I would probably start sleeping in the bed again. If she wants to leave she can. I’d probably also start trying to figure out how to deal with the snoring. I know I stopped snoring when I lost weight and went dairy free. Not saying that’s the solution for everyone, but I’d bet there’s something you can do.

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