Rejection is a part of life. I’m certain everyone reading this post has experienced some sort of rejection in life. You were rejected for the job you applied for. You were cut from the sports team. You were told no when asking her out, or he never returned your call after that date.
Rejection in marriage
Rejection happens, we understand it and we move on. But what happens when the person who you committed to for life rejects you? When the one who said “I do…for better or for worse…til death do us part” rejects you? How do you handle rejection…in your marriage?
Before moving forward is it possible to even be rejected in marriage? After saying “I do,” what’s yours is his/hers, and what’s his/hers is yours. They cant’ say no…can they? Of course, your spouse can say no, and so can you!
In what ways can you be rejected in your marriage?
Although marriage is intended to be a lasting relationship, you and your spouse won’t always feel the same on everything. Here are a few ways in which rejection can happen in marriage.
- Material rejection. Maybe you want the big screen TV, or the floral colored wall paper. Your spouse may not. This one doesn’t seem to be a big deal, and may be easy to handle.
- Verbal rejection. When one spouse attempts to talk, and the other doesn’t respond in a kind way, it is a form of rejection. In addition, this type could be in the form of harsh words spoken as well as not speaking at all.
- Physical rejection. Sexual or intimate rejection may have been the first thing you thought of when reading the title of this post. It can cause the downfall of many marriages, and not just when the wife rejects the husband’s attempts to have sex, but vice versa.
- Emotional rejection. Have you ever had a dream? I mean a HUGE dream, but your dream was crushed when unappreciated, mocked, or discouraged by your spouse? This could be one of the most damaging rejections.
Rejection in marriage is real, and can cause real problems in your relationship. There are a few things you can do to handle rejection, so your marriage can continue to move forward and thrive. When it happens in your relationship, try the suggestions below to help you with how to handle rejection…in your marriage.
Don’t go tit for tat
In our household this happens all the time…with our kids. One sibling hurts the other, so the other does something back. When we ask the one who retaliated, their response is “he hit me, or she did…” In your marriage avoid this childish behavior when you are rejected. Instead try returning love.
Do discuss your feelings
This is usually tougher for men than it is for women. Men get hurt and our pride prevents us from acknowledging it. This starts the process of isolation, and allows your thoughts to run wild with negativity. Don’t allow it, by openly and honestly discussing your feelings in love. Not shouting, blaming, or arguing, but calmly discussing.
Don’t take it personal
I’m guessing your spouse really loves you, and is not trying to really hurt you or tear you down, so don’t take it personal. He/she is not rejecting you, but some thing. That thing could be the act of sex, something he/she doesn’t understand, or the words you are speaking that could trigger feelings he/she doesn’t want at the time. Your spouse still loves you, so remember that.
Do respect your spouse’s choice
You were two separate people when you got married and although the Bible views you as one, it isn’t easy. Your thoughts may not always be the same. You may be passionate about things that your spouse may not even care about. Respect their thoughts, feelings, and actions.
Don’t “play it safe” in the future
“Why bother.” This can become your reaction and response when faced with this situation in the future. This is poison to your marriage. You may think, “the last time I tried to do this, or discuss this I was rejected. I’m not even going to bother this time.” This can be a slow defeat in your marriage.
Don’t let a rejection prevent your dreams, and your marriage from moving forward. Timing could have been off last time, distractions could have been present, or maybe even your spouse didn’t fully understand. Even if all of those were lined up, maybe this time he/she will have a change of mind.
Do continue to love your spouse
No matter what, don’t let it affect your love for your spouse. I’m not talking about your feelings. I’m talking about your actions.
Keep in mind love is an action, and being rejected, no matter how big or small the rejection, should not prevent you from putting love in action in your marriage. This will help you to love your way through rejection, and not let rejection destroy your marriage.
What other ways would you suggest in handling rejection in marriage?
Photo credit: iStock photo