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I became a Stepford wife and saved my marriage

By AMANDA CABLE - More by this author »

Last updated at 08:52am on 3rd May 2007

The scene was so highly charged it looked set to ignite another explosive domestic row. There, her eyes smouldering with adolescent rebellion, stood a teenage daughter, next to her was her fiercely protective mother and, facing the pair, the girl's stepfather, who was attempting to admonish her for defying his will.

As Ali Tavassoli finished his scolding, he braced himself for the reaction he'd become all too used to over many years from his shrewish wife, who had always resisted his attempts to discipline her daughter, feeling that only she should take on that role of parental enforcer.

Yet instead of the expected belligerence, she hesitated and gulped before saying a little robotically: 'Ali, you are a sensible and intelligent man. I love you and it is my role in life to support you.'

If it is hard to believe that a woman with her character could be quite so subservient, the shock to her family was even greater. Both husband and daughter burst into tears of surprise.

Karen recalls: 'I think that was the moment I truly became a surrendered housewife - and actually saved my marriage in the process. I was stunned by my own reaction because I've been arguing and bickering with and nagging Ali non-stop for nine years.

'But I didn't actually realise just how much my behaviour had affected the whole family until I gave in to Ali for the first time, and both he and Yasmin started to cry because they were so happy and relieved.'

Given that until a few weeks earlier the house had been a battleground, Karen's extraordinary capitulation must have seemed too good to be true for her long-suffering husband.

The story of how this sharp-tongued working wife and mother from Leeds agreed to relinquish all control to her husband - swopping furious rows for sweet acquiescence in a bid to win back his affections - is the subject of a new Channel Five documentary, Obedient Wives.

The idea of the surrendered wife comes from a book by American Laura Doyle - a former marketing copywriter whose opinions make Ma Walton look like a feminist activist.

It has spawned a whole Surrendered Wives movement which goes far beyond the wildest dreams of your average Stepford Wife. Devotees agree to relinquish all control of their husband's life, allowing him to make all the decisions, never saying 'no' to sex, and finally learning to change themselves and not their men.

The idea is that men can't change - so women are the ones who need a radical re-think in order to preserve romance in marriages.

Surrendered wives even have their own website, complete with images of red roses and sugar-coated assurances from Laura Doyle that 'none of us feels good about ourselves when we're nagging, critical or controlling.

'Through surrendering, you will find the courage to gradually stop indulging in these unpleasant behaviours and replace them with dignified ones.'

In a conciliatory tone liable to make feminists froth at the mouth, she urges followers to ask: 'Which do I want more: to have control of every situation or to have an intimate marriage?'

But is there any substance to these claims? Could they actually make any difference to a modern-day marriage being torn apart at the seams by arguments?

Enter Karen, a 39-year-old mother-of-two and successful business manager, who admits to a lifetime of bossy behaviour.

She says: 'My father was a mild-mannered mechanic, and my mother was a stay-at-home housewife.

'She ran her home and five children with military-style precision, and took every decision there was about the house and money.

'She controlled Dad utterly, and even as a child I subconsciously copied her, always striving to be in control of any situation. In my 20s, I had a brief, unhappy marriage with a very dominant husband.

'It nearly destroyed me, and when we split up I found myself single with a two-year-old daughter, Yasmin. I vowed that no man would ever get the chance to dominate me again.

'I met Ali, a courier, soon afterwards. We bumped into each other when we were shopping, started talking outside and quickly fell in love. He is naturally gentle and romantic, while I am ambitious and strive for perfection.

'When we married nine years ago, I started to try to mould Ali into a perfect husband. Somehow, without me realising it, my attempts to change him turned into a hamster-wheel of nonstop criticism, nagging and inevitable arguments. Ali just couldn't seem to do anything right. If he expressed an opinion, I would immediately disagree and argue until I got my own way.

'I didn't trust him to do anything around the house, so I would come home from work tired and stressed, and start to cook and control the family.

'The worst conflict was when Ali tried to discipline the children. Our son Kia is three, and if Ali told him off I would often accuse him of being too harsh.

'But if Ali dared to tell Yasmin off, I would immediately leap to her defence, even if she was in the wrong.

'Each time, it would lead to an explosive row between Ali and me, while Yasmin would sneak off and her misdemeanour would be long forgotten.'

By last November, as documentary makers were hunting for a real-life shrew for their television taming, Karen's marriage had hit crisis point.

She says: 'I was in utter despair. My controlling became worse after I was promoted at work, becoming a manager with a team of staff working for me. I was so used to giving out orders that I would simply come home and treat Ali in exactly the same way.

'If he dared to try to defend himself, I would simply explode, and yet another row would erupt. We were rowing every single evening - almost every hour.

'I started to dread weekends because even a trip to the supermarket would end in a huge disagreement. Ali couldn't pick something from the shelf without me telling him to use another brand.

'Inside, I was desperately unhappy and insecure. I was terrified of losing him, but I couldn't stop the way I was.

'After one particularly vicious weekend of rowing, I sat down and looked at our wedding pictures.

'We looked so happy and carefree, and I couldn't believe the difference between the smiling bride and the nagging old hag I had become.'

That week, Karen saw an advertisement asking for volunteers for a television programme. She says: 'It came through on the e-mail at the call centre where I work, and when I saw the words "Is your marriage in crisis?" I started to read. It explained briefly about Surrendered Wives, and gave a telephone number.

'I didn't like the term surrender because it sounded like just giving in, but I was absolutely desperate and prepared to try anything to save my marriage.'

Karen was given two days of training by Surrendered Wives tutor Ellen Hale, a woman who (taking a stance that will infuriate many modern women) readily blames working wives for lack of marital harmony.

Ellen says: 'More and more women are working, becoming CEOs of companies and gaining status in the work world. It is very hard for them to come home and be a feminine person and a wife, and be loving and soft and caring - they just come home with this boss attitude instead.'

For her first lesson in Surrendering, Ellen handed an astounded Karen a roll of gaffer tape 'to help her visualise her own mouth being taped shut'.

Karen says: 'Whenever I was about to disagree with Ali, or to try and boss him, I had to imagine tape over my mouth to keep me from saying anything'.

Karen was asked to take Ali and their son Kia to the hairdresser's - giving Ali the say on how everyone's new style should look.

Watching with a look of sheer agony as her husband chose his own haircut for the first time in nearly a decade, she allowed him to arrange Kia's haircut, too.

Finally, it was time for her own - and she sat horrified in the chair while Ali cheerfully asked the stylist to 'curl' his wife's hair. 'He's so old fashioned - he wants me to look like Farrah Fawcett,' she hissed.

But Surrendered Wives allow their husbands to choose how they should look - and an hour later, as Karen inspected her new 'poodle' look in front of the mirror, she forced herself through gritted teeth to smile and congratulate Ali on his wise choice.

She recalls: 'It was hard to lavish him with praise all the time, because I simply hadn't ever done it before.

'He thought I was actually joking when I first started to compliment him. But praise and gratitude are two essential parts of the Surrendered Wife training.'

So, too, is apology. Ali, 38, recalls: 'After a few days, Karen sat me down and said "I'm really sorry because sometimes I'm really disrespectful to you. I apologise and I won't let it happen again". I honestly thought she was delirious - I was so shocked that I couldn't speak.

'Karen had never apologised once. But, suddenly, she was meekly saying sorry for the way she'd behaved in the past!'

By now, Karen was in full surrender mode - and next came the end to the explosive arguments.

She says: 'I learned to agree with Ali, to smile and say that he was an intelligent man whose decisions I respected. If he had an outrageous plan, like a hideous new colour scheme for the living room - I knew I wasn't allowed to erupt.

'Of course, it was hard at times not to give him both barrels but I felt that, if I was going to go through with this, I'd have to stick to it.

'Instead, I would pause and say "That sounds really interesting. Also, what about doing it this way as well - would you consider this idea?" Surrendered wives are not allowed to say "but" or be too negative. If your husband is clearly wrong, you can try to patiently offer him another alternative, while never criticising what he has said.'

If such verbal surrender was just about bearable, Karen struggled rather more with the thorniest element of her new role - sex.

As Ellen outlined this aspect of the challenge, Karen found herself bridling at the instruction 'never refuse your husband sex'.

She says: 'I was told to make myself available for lovemaking at least once a week.' She pauses, and adds: 'I don't like lying back and thinking of England - my marriage was in such crisis that we weren't even kissing and cuddling.

'But this was the area that surprised me most. Acting like a Surrendered Wife physically, cuddling him and putting my hand on his knee, have helped bring an easy intimacy that we had lost.

'If Ali does say anything that is hurtful to me I can't hit back with a witty and well-timed riposte like I always used to in the past. Instead, I look hurt and just say: "Ouch. Ali, what you said really did hurt me."

'He immediately looks really sorry and puts his arm around me - and it diffuses a situation which would have ended in a row.'

So what difference has two months of being a Surrendered Wife made to the Tavassoli marriage? Karen says: 'I have been raised as an independent woman and the Surrendered Wife movement goes against everything I've stood for.

'But, incredibly, it has saved my marriage. I don't do more housework - I do less, because Ali is so amazed to be thanked so nicely for every small thing he does that he has started loading the dishwasher for the first time in years.

'Before, I would just have criticised him for putting the dishes in the wrong way. He is so thrilled with the "New" Karen that he even told me to sit and watch a film the other night so he could do the ironing.

'He appreciates there is a closeness between us that we had lost.'

Ali himself - a husband so henpecked he still bears mental scars - agrees his wife's change of character altered the dynamics of their marriage dramatically.

Putting his arm around his wife's shoulders and giving her a hefty squeeze, he smiles and says: 'I like the fact that she has surrendered. I know it was hard for her - nagging is a bit like an addiction.

'But we were so unhappy before, and the rows were terrible. Now she smiles sweetly and asks me what I think about everything. We don't row, we just cuddle like teenagers - and it is wonderful.'

Ali might like the way his wife is behaving. But the question most women will be asking themselves is: just how long can she keep it up?

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Yeah, but...Why does it have to be all one way or the other? That's what I don't get about these people.

My wife has a degree and finance and accounting. She's a CPA and runs the money for a large real estate company. She's as smart as I am, maybe even smarter.

We've been married for 16 years and never had a fight of any consequence. Honest to God. Well, with the exception of the time she lobbed a vacuum cleaner attachment at me. But we pretty much talk over all our decisions mutually.

I don't want a Stepford wife any more than I want a termagant.

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with the exception of the time she lobbed a vacuum cleaner attachment at me.

Was this after you had given her the rest of it for an aniversary gift?

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with the exception of the time she lobbed a vacuum cleaner attachment at me.

Was this after you had given her the rest of it for an aniversary gift?

Nah, lobbing it because of that would have made her merely ungrateful ... not a termagant.

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with the exception of the time she lobbed a vacuum cleaner attachment at me.

Was this after you had given her the rest of it for an aniversary gift?

It was the vacuum cleaner I had when we got married. She didn't like it. Three months after we were married, something got lodged in the hose, and she starts telling me that she's going to buy a new one, blah blah blah, When I say "Look, let me just fixed the thing." So she lobs the floor attachment at me.

It whizzes past my ear and she has this "Oh sh*t" look on her face. I simply say, "I know we've only been married for three months, but if you ever throw something at me again, I'll divorce your ass."

Bingo. The only argument we've ever had. I'm kind of glad we got it out of the way early.

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/fema...mp;in_a_source=

I became a Stepford wife and saved my marriage

By AMANDA CABLE - More by this author »

Last updated at 08:52am on 3rd May 2007

The scene was so highly charged it looked set to ignite another explosive domestic row. There, her eyes smouldering with adolescent rebellion, stood a teenage daughter, next to her was her fiercely protective mother and, facing the pair, the girl's stepfather, who was attempting to admonish her for defying his will.

As Ali Tavassoli finished his scolding, he braced himself for the reaction he'd become all too used to over many years from his shrewish wife, who had always resisted his attempts to discipline her daughter, feeling that only she should take on that role of parental enforcer.

Yet instead of the expected belligerence, she hesitated and gulped before saying a little robotically: 'Ali, you are a sensible and intelligent man. I love you and it is my role in life to support you.'

If it is hard to believe that a woman with her character could be quite so subservient, the shock to her family was even greater. Both husband and daughter burst into tears of surprise.

Karen recalls: 'I think that was the moment I truly became a surrendered housewife - and actually saved my marriage in the process. I was stunned by my own reaction because I've been arguing and bickering with and nagging Ali non-stop for nine years.

'But I didn't actually realise just how much my behaviour had affected the whole family until I gave in to Ali for the first time, and both he and Yasmin started to cry because they were so happy and relieved.'

Given that until a few weeks earlier the house had been a battleground, Karen's extraordinary capitulation must have seemed too good to be true for her long-suffering husband.

The story of how this sharp-tongued working wife and mother from Leeds agreed to relinquish all control to her husband - swopping furious rows for sweet acquiescence in a bid to win back his affections - is the subject of a new Channel Five documentary, Obedient Wives.

The idea of the surrendered wife comes from a book by American Laura Doyle - a former marketing copywriter whose opinions make Ma Walton look like a feminist activist.

It has spawned a whole Surrendered Wives movement which goes far beyond the wildest dreams of your average Stepford Wife. Devotees agree to relinquish all control of their husband's life, allowing him to make all the decisions, never saying 'no' to sex, and finally learning to change themselves and not their men.

The idea is that men can't change - so women are the ones who need a radical re-think in order to preserve romance in marriages.

Surrendered wives even have their own website, complete with images of red roses and sugar-coated assurances from Laura Doyle that 'none of us feels good about ourselves when we're nagging, critical or controlling.

'Through surrendering, you will find the courage to gradually stop indulging in these unpleasant behaviours and replace them with dignified ones.'

In a conciliatory tone liable to make feminists froth at the mouth, she urges followers to ask: 'Which do I want more: to have control of every situation or to have an intimate marriage?'

But is there any substance to these claims? Could they actually make any difference to a modern-day marriage being torn apart at the seams by arguments?

Enter Karen, a 39-year-old mother-of-two and successful business manager, who admits to a lifetime of bossy behaviour.

She says: 'My father was a mild-mannered mechanic, and my mother was a stay-at-home housewife.

'She ran her home and five children with military-style precision, and took every decision there was about the house and money.

'She controlled Dad utterly, and even as a child I subconsciously copied her, always striving to be in control of any situation. In my 20s, I had a brief, unhappy marriage with a very dominant husband.

'It nearly destroyed me, and when we split up I found myself single with a two-year-old daughter, Yasmin. I vowed that no man would ever get the chance to dominate me again.

'I met Ali, a courier, soon afterwards. We bumped into each other when we were shopping, started talking outside and quickly fell in love. He is naturally gentle and romantic, while I am ambitious and strive for perfection.

'When we married nine years ago, I started to try to mould Ali into a perfect husband. Somehow, without me realising it, my attempts to change him turned into a hamster-wheel of nonstop criticism, nagging and inevitable arguments. Ali just couldn't seem to do anything right. If he expressed an opinion, I would immediately disagree and argue until I got my own way.

'I didn't trust him to do anything around the house, so I would come home from work tired and stressed, and start to cook and control the family.

'The worst conflict was when Ali tried to discipline the children. Our son Kia is three, and if Ali told him off I would often accuse him of being too harsh.

'But if Ali dared to tell Yasmin off, I would immediately leap to her defence, even if she was in the wrong.

'Each time, it would lead to an explosive row between Ali and me, while Yasmin would sneak off and her misdemeanour would be long forgotten.'

By last November, as documentary makers were hunting for a real-life shrew for their television taming, Karen's marriage had hit crisis point.

She says: 'I was in utter despair. My controlling became worse after I was promoted at work, becoming a manager with a team of staff working for me. I was so used to giving out orders that I would simply come home and treat Ali in exactly the same way.

'If he dared to try to defend himself, I would simply explode, and yet another row would erupt. We were rowing every single evening - almost every hour.

'I started to dread weekends because even a trip to the supermarket would end in a huge disagreement. Ali couldn't pick something from the shelf without me telling him to use another brand.

'Inside, I was desperately unhappy and insecure. I was terrified of losing him, but I couldn't stop the way I was.

'After one particularly vicious weekend of rowing, I sat down and looked at our wedding pictures.

'We looked so happy and carefree, and I couldn't believe the difference between the smiling bride and the nagging old hag I had become.'

That week, Karen saw an advertisement asking for volunteers for a television programme. She says: 'It came through on the e-mail at the call centre where I work, and when I saw the words "Is your marriage in crisis?" I started to read. It explained briefly about Surrendered Wives, and gave a telephone number.

'I didn't like the term surrender because it sounded like just giving in, but I was absolutely desperate and prepared to try anything to save my marriage.'

Karen was given two days of training by Surrendered Wives tutor Ellen Hale, a woman who (taking a stance that will infuriate many modern women) readily blames working wives for lack of marital harmony.

Ellen says: 'More and more women are working, becoming CEOs of companies and gaining status in the work world. It is very hard for them to come home and be a feminine person and a wife, and be loving and soft and caring - they just come home with this boss attitude instead.'

For her first lesson in Surrendering, Ellen handed an astounded Karen a roll of gaffer tape 'to help her visualise her own mouth being taped shut'.

Karen says: 'Whenever I was about to disagree with Ali, or to try and boss him, I had to imagine tape over my mouth to keep me from saying anything'.

Karen was asked to take Ali and their son Kia to the hairdresser's - giving Ali the say on how everyone's new style should look.

Watching with a look of sheer agony as her husband chose his own haircut for the first time in nearly a decade, she allowed him to arrange Kia's haircut, too.

Finally, it was time for her own - and she sat horrified in the chair while Ali cheerfully asked the stylist to 'curl' his wife's hair. 'He's so old fashioned - he wants me to look like Farrah Fawcett,' she hissed.

But Surrendered Wives allow their husbands to choose how they should look - and an hour later, as Karen inspected her new 'poodle' look in front of the mirror, she forced herself through gritted teeth to smile and congratulate Ali on his wise choice.

She recalls: 'It was hard to lavish him with praise all the time, because I simply hadn't ever done it before.

'He thought I was actually joking when I first started to compliment him. But praise and gratitude are two essential parts of the Surrendered Wife training.'

So, too, is apology. Ali, 38, recalls: 'After a few days, Karen sat me down and said "I'm really sorry because sometimes I'm really disrespectful to you. I apologise and I won't let it happen again". I honestly thought she was delirious - I was so shocked that I couldn't speak.

'Karen had never apologised once. But, suddenly, she was meekly saying sorry for the way she'd behaved in the past!'

By now, Karen was in full surrender mode - and next came the end to the explosive arguments.

She says: 'I learned to agree with Ali, to smile and say that he was an intelligent man whose decisions I respected. If he had an outrageous plan, like a hideous new colour scheme for the living room - I knew I wasn't allowed to erupt.

'Of course, it was hard at times not to give him both barrels but I felt that, if I was going to go through with this, I'd have to stick to it.

'Instead, I would pause and say "That sounds really interesting. Also, what about doing it this way as well - would you consider this idea?" Surrendered wives are not allowed to say "but" or be too negative. If your husband is clearly wrong, you can try to patiently offer him another alternative, while never criticising what he has said.'

If such verbal surrender was just about bearable, Karen struggled rather more with the thorniest element of her new role - sex.

As Ellen outlined this aspect of the challenge, Karen found herself bridling at the instruction 'never refuse your husband sex'.

She says: 'I was told to make myself available for lovemaking at least once a week.' She pauses, and adds: 'I don't like lying back and thinking of England - my marriage was in such crisis that we weren't even kissing and cuddling.

'But this was the area that surprised me most. Acting like a Surrendered Wife physically, cuddling him and putting my hand on his knee, have helped bring an easy intimacy that we had lost.

'If Ali does say anything that is hurtful to me I can't hit back with a witty and well-timed riposte like I always used to in the past. Instead, I look hurt and just say: "Ouch. Ali, what you said really did hurt me."

'He immediately looks really sorry and puts his arm around me - and it diffuses a situation which would have ended in a row.'

So what difference has two months of being a Surrendered Wife made to the Tavassoli marriage? Karen says: 'I have been raised as an independent woman and the Surrendered Wife movement goes against everything I've stood for.

'But, incredibly, it has saved my marriage. I don't do more housework - I do less, because Ali is so amazed to be thanked so nicely for every small thing he does that he has started loading the dishwasher for the first time in years.

'Before, I would just have criticised him for putting the dishes in the wrong way. He is so thrilled with the "New" Karen that he even told me to sit and watch a film the other night so he could do the ironing.

'He appreciates there is a closeness between us that we had lost.'

Ali himself - a husband so henpecked he still bears mental scars - agrees his wife's change of character altered the dynamics of their marriage dramatically.

Putting his arm around his wife's shoulders and giving her a hefty squeeze, he smiles and says: 'I like the fact that she has surrendered. I know it was hard for her - nagging is a bit like an addiction.

'But we were so unhappy before, and the rows were terrible. Now she smiles sweetly and asks me what I think about everything. We don't row, we just cuddle like teenagers - and it is wonderful.'

Ali might like the way his wife is behaving. But the question most women will be asking themselves is: just how long can she keep it up?

So this Laura Doyle read the bible and re-packaged it for other religions? A good Christian woman already knows these things. The discipline to do it and a husband who knows his role as well is a must. If you set up your marriage the wrong way to begin with, it takes something this radical to keep it going sometimes. Well. It's only radical to those who have never read it in the bible.

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We were rowing every single evening - almost every hour.

Heeey now! B)

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Hey, Muslims have subservient wives, too.

I'm sorry, but this subservient stuff is a crock of s***. We follow the Bible and Christian teachings, and have no problems. As long as each partner treats the other as God would treat his children, all is ok. It is just the two of us, so we're ok on splitting the duties. Mine are the house, and his is outside. If kids were involved, it wouldn't work. His would still be outside, mine would be the house and the kids. But I'm past childbearing age, so that's a non-issue.

No, I don't agree with this stupid Dr. Laura crap. I'm a feminist and proud to be one.

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Hey, Muslims have subservient wives, too.

I'm sorry, but this subservient stuff is a crock of s***. We follow the Bible and Christian teachings, and have no problems. As long as each partner treats the other as God would treat his children, all is ok. It is just the two of us, so we're ok on splitting the duties. Mine are the house, and his is outside. If kids were involved, it wouldn't work. His would still be outside, mine would be the house and the kids. But I'm past childbearing age, so that's a non-issue.

No, I don't agree with this stupid Dr. Laura crap. I'm a feminist and proud to be one.

Yeah, I don't buy into it either. In fact, the New Testament makes a fairly eloquent case for equality:

God Himself elevated the status of women forever when He chose to send His own Son, Jesus Christ, to be born of a virgin. The words and actions of Jesus underscored His elevated opinion of women, as did the early church that was established in His name following His return to heaven:

His first miracle was performed in response to a plea from His mother (John 2:1-11).

His first revelation of Himself as Messiah was to a woman (John 4:25- 26).

His greatest miracle was performed at the request of two women (John 11:1-44).

His death was memorialized by a woman (John 12:1-8).

Women were included in His expanded group of disciples (Mark 15:41). Women stayed with Him throughout His crucifixion, even after the men had left (Matthew 27:55-56).

Women observed His burial (Matthew 27:61).

Following His resurrection, He appeared first to a woman (John 20:1- 16).

He commissioned women as the very first evangelists (Matthew 28:1- 10; John 20:17).

Women were included in the group of disciples who met daily for prayer after the ascension of Jesus (Acts 1:14).

Ancient prophecy was fulfilled when the Spirit of God was given equally to men and women at Pentecost (Acts 2:17).

Women were among the very first “believers” or “Christians” who made up the early church (Acts 5:14; Acts 8:12; 17:4, 12).

The first church in Europe was begun with a group of women and actually met in the home of a woman (Acts 16:13-15).

The early church was staffed by many women (Romans 16:12, Philippians 4:3).

At least one early church was co-led by a woman (1 Corinthians 16:19).

The very fact that the Bible goes out of its way to carefully record all of the above reveals the intentions of God’s purpose to reestablish the position of women to that of equality with men. His Son, Jesus Christ, not only bridged the gap between God and man through His death on the Cross that made atonement for man’s sin, He removed all barriers including that of gender, race, and nationality.

This was confirmed by the apostle Paul when he stated, There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ then you are… heirs according to the promise (Galatians 3:28-29).

Today, when the Bible, which is God’s Word, is read, applied, obeyed, and lived out, women are treated with respect and honor as co-heirs with Jesus Christ in the Kingdom of God (1 Peter 3:7).

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Disclaimer: I posted this PURELY in jest...

Oh, we all know. It's a fascinating subject, however. Why would women with high IQs and accomplished careers just subjugate themselves to their husbands? And why would men want their wives like that? Personally, I like being married to a financial genius. It makes my life a lot easier.

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Disclaimer: I posted this PURELY in jest...

Oh, we all know. It's a fascinating subject, however. Why would women with high IQs and accomplished careers just subjugate themselves to their husbands? And why would men want their wives like that? Personally, I like being married to a financial genius. It makes my life a lot easier.

True, but if you run your marriage purely as a democracy and everyone gets one vote what happens when you can't get a majority decision? Somebody has to take the lead and from our experience that's where all the arguments come in. I can completely understand the thinking here, some people have just decided that it is easier to let one person make the decisions to eliminate conflict. It's not the way I would like to lead my life, but, c'est la vie!

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I think that though it seems extreme, for a time this is probably the way things should run for this particular couple. In time, the pendulum should swing back to something more in the middle, but you sort of have to stop the nagging thing cold turkey. I don't think she can or should keep it up to this degree indefinitely. But for a while it's good because it "retrains" them both on how to treat each other. She learns to give him the space to be his own person and he learns that by stepping up and being considerate of her time and taking on more of the housework and stuff that it results in a happier wife who wants to treat him even better. It almost becomes a recurring cycle of giving and consideration.

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I think that though it seems extreme, for a time this is probably the way things should run for this particular couple. In time, the pendulum should swing back to something more in the middle, but you sort of have to stop the nagging thing cold turkey. I don't think she can or should keep it up to this degree indefinitely. But for a while it's good because it "retrains" them both on how to treat each other. She learns to give him the space to be his own person and he learns that by stepping up and being considerate of her time and taking on more of the housework and stuff that it results in a happier wife who wants to treat him even better. It almost becomes a recurring cycle of giving and consideration.

You said a mouthful. Want a happy marriage? It's pretty simple: Put your spouse's needs before your own. If both partners in the marriage do that, then things are pretty great.

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Hey, Muslims have subservient wives, too.

I'm sorry, but this subservient stuff is a crock of s***. We follow the Bible and Christian teachings, and have no problems. As long as each partner treats the other as God would treat his children, all is ok. It is just the two of us, so we're ok on splitting the duties. Mine are the house, and his is outside. If kids were involved, it wouldn't work. His would still be outside, mine would be the house and the kids. But I'm past childbearing age, so that's a non-issue.

No, I don't agree with this stupid Dr. Laura crap. I'm a feminist and proud to be one.

Yeah, I don't buy into it either. In fact, the New Testament makes a fairly eloquent case for equality:

God Himself elevated the status of women forever when He chose to send His own Son, Jesus Christ, to be born of a virgin. The words and actions of Jesus underscored His elevated opinion of women, as did the early church that was established in His name following His return to heaven:

His first miracle was performed in response to a plea from His mother (John 2:1-11).

His first revelation of Himself as Messiah was to a woman (John 4:25- 26).

His greatest miracle was performed at the request of two women (John 11:1-44).

His death was memorialized by a woman (John 12:1-8).

Women were included in His expanded group of disciples (Mark 15:41). Women stayed with Him throughout His crucifixion, even after the men had left (Matthew 27:55-56).

Women observed His burial (Matthew 27:61).

Following His resurrection, He appeared first to a woman (John 20:1- 16).

He commissioned women as the very first evangelists (Matthew 28:1- 10; John 20:17).

Women were included in the group of disciples who met daily for prayer after the ascension of Jesus (Acts 1:14).

Ancient prophecy was fulfilled when the Spirit of God was given equally to men and women at Pentecost (Acts 2:17).

Women were among the very first “believers” or “Christians” who made up the early church (Acts 5:14; Acts 8:12; 17:4, 12).

The first church in Europe was begun with a group of women and actually met in the home of a woman (Acts 16:13-15).

The early church was staffed by many women (Romans 16:12, Philippians 4:3).

At least one early church was co-led by a woman (1 Corinthians 16:19).

The very fact that the Bible goes out of its way to carefully record all of the above reveals the intentions of God’s purpose to reestablish the position of women to that of equality with men. His Son, Jesus Christ, not only bridged the gap between God and man through His death on the Cross that made atonement for man’s sin, He removed all barriers including that of gender, race, and nationality.

This was confirmed by the apostle Paul when he stated, There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ then you are… heirs according to the promise (Galatians 3:28-29).

Today, when the Bible, which is God’s Word, is read, applied, obeyed, and lived out, women are treated with respect and honor as co-heirs with Jesus Christ in the Kingdom of God (1 Peter 3:7).

The bible never makes a case for equality when it comes to which one should be the head of the household. Here's a better explanation than I could give in a small amount of time: (Note that it never puts women on a lower scale as a human being)

Wives submit to your own husbands - indicating the husband's need to lead, requiring that the wife honor her husband, be supportive of him, respect him and obey him. - Ephesians 5:23-24

22 Wives, be subject to your own husbands as to the Lord; 23 For a husband is head of the wife as also Christ is Head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the Body. 24 But as the church is subject to Christ, so also let the wives be subject to their husbands in everything.

Wives submit to your OWN husbands. Why? because he's the one that you do not want to submit to in your flesh. The wife's submission indicates the need of the husband to lead his own family before the Lord. God made a husband, even built him up, to be the head of the family, to be the leader. Ironically, what happens is the wife sees the husband's faults (which are many) she wonders how God can allow him to lead at all. This quickly creates an element that undermines the marriage life. When the wife dishonors her husband, even when he may give reason to do so, this undermines the marriage. It is easy to see the defects and problems in the husband and even question, “You're the head?”

On the wife's side, she needs care, comfort, understanding, trust and security with the assurance that the husband will do anything he can to support her in her walk with Christ for His purpose on the earth. On the other side, the husband needs to know that he is the leader, the head, ordained by God Himself in His Word. Husbands need encouragement and support through submission. Submission is not what is portrayed of in the movies where women are slaves or objects, but a submission to the Lord's will and His arrangement for her. This applies even when the situation is not the greatest because of the husband's faults or simpleness, etc. The submissive wife learns to pay attention to Christ and His commission to her rather than what would undermine the marriage. On the contrary she stands with her husband, supported him, upholding him. And when he makes a mistake she learns to stand with him and seek to find a wise way to help the mistake not become a mistake if possible. http://www.churchinwestland.org/id418.htm

This is a good explanation. Too many people hear this and fail to actually study it. It does not call for a woman to be a slave. But as someone said earlier, there will be a time when a decision must be made and an agreement cannot be reached. At this time, the man as head of the house, must make that decision. If a man does not stand up and take his place as God has ordained, he then let's his wife down. If a woman does not allow the man to make the decision, then she steals from him what God has ordained.

The principles on which this thread/book are based are nothing new. But to attempt to implement it without biblical instruction will be a difficult task to continue in the long run. A successful person never wants to be made to feel as though they are not as good as the next person. But with biblical teachings and understanding, they realize that its not the same as being a slave. It's more about fulfilling your role in your marriage. This does not in any way give men the right to act like kings (although its good to be the king). This in actuality puts even more responsibility and burden on the Godly man to ensure that every decision has been made though prayer and careful consideration of your spouses input.

And while its good to strive for equality within the world, it goes against biblical teaching to for a woman to take the lead role in the home. And whoever said "with kids it would not work" is absolutely correct. I think God understands the delicate balance that men and women live under. But he also understands that there can be only one head.

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Actually, there is a mutual submission aspect to this. The passage you mention really starts in verse 21:

21 Submit yourselves to one another out of reverence for Christ...

Husbands are not off the hook here in the submission department.

In fact, the Greek doesn't even have the verb repeat itself in verse 22. The translations to English should look like this:

Submit yourselves to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, to your husbands, as to the Lord...

In other words, the action for verse 22 flows out of what happens in verse 21. This interlinear shows the Greek construction. The verses after that show how submission looks for each of them in more specific fashion. What is love if not self-sacrificing and elevating the needs of another above those of yourself? It's taking on the nature of a servant. That IS submission. It's not "I get to make all the decisions."

http://www.scripture4all.org/OnlineInterli.../NTpdf/eph5.pdf

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Disclaimer: I posted this PURELY in jest...

Oh, we all know. It's a fascinating subject, however. Why would women with high IQs and accomplished careers just subjugate themselves to their husbands? And why would men want their wives like that? Personally, I like being married to a financial genius. It makes my life a lot easier.

True, but if you run your marriage purely as a democracy and everyone gets one vote what happens when you can't get a majority decision? Somebody has to take the lead and from our experience that's where all the arguments come in. I can completely understand the thinking here, some people have just decided that it is easier to let one person make the decisions to eliminate conflict. It's not the way I would like to lead my life, but, c'est la vie!

What's wrong with the lead being taken by the spouse with more expertise in that particular area? I don't think it is easier for one person to always be the "tiebreaker", so to speak. Or fair. And I don't know that I would want to be that person.

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Disclaimer: I posted this PURELY in jest...

Oh, we all know. It's a fascinating subject, however. Why would women with high IQs and accomplished careers just subjugate themselves to their husbands? And why would men want their wives like that? Personally, I like being married to a financial genius. It makes my life a lot easier.

True, but if you run your marriage purely as a democracy and everyone gets one vote what happens when you can't get a majority decision? Somebody has to take the lead and from our experience that's where all the arguments come in. I can completely understand the thinking here, some people have just decided that it is easier to let one person make the decisions to eliminate conflict. It's not the way I would like to lead my life, but, c'est la vie!

What's wrong with the lead being taken by the spouse with more expertise in that particular area? I don't think it is easier for one person to always be the "tiebreaker", so to speak. Or fair. And I don't know that I would want to be that person.

Agreed. Again, not what I would want to do, but I understand the reasoning behind it.

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