An article from Focus on the Family asks the reader to ponder if their marriage is under a spiritual attack or if your spouse is just being a jerk based upon the following examples:
Your spouse isn’t as kind or loving toward you as they used to be.
They know which of your buttons to push and the worst time to push them.
You’re afraid to bring up any tough issues because it leads to conflict.
You have a low-grade irritation with your spouse most of the time.
Your husband or wife doesn’t meet your needs.
You try to stay positive and focus on their needs and interests, but you’re faking it.
You blame one person for every issue; either it’s your fault or their fault.
Why is it difficult for Focus on the Family to admit that these scenarios are signs of abuse? Why is it so hard to admit that Christians can be abusers too? I suppose it’s easier to blame it on Satan and human nature.
What is the solution to solving the problem? Pray, change yourself, and work on the relationship. Sounds like some of the godly wife books out there, doesn’t it? At least Focus on the Family isn’t blaming it all on the wife.
While there are some good points in this article for working on problems in a marriage, the suggestions provided assume that the marriage has open, healthy communication. However, the scenarios provided do not reflect a healthy marriage and the solutions will not fix a marriage where one spouse is controlling and abusive. Too many times a victim remains trapped in an abusive marriage because praying more, working on himself/herself more, and focusing on the relationship is not reciprocated by the abuser.
It’s time for Focus on the Family to acknowledge that abusers are not interested in making the marriage better. Abusers are only interested in maintaining power and control. If a victim is ready to find their way out of an abusive marriage, then they should be encouraged to seek help. It’s time to stop blaming Satan and hold the abuser accountable for the problem in the marriage.