Headship or Partnership?

This post is written by Guest Writer – Don Taylor
Why not a partnership? Does a marriage need a boss ? Well, sometimes yes, and most of the time, no.
Some husbands make very poor leaders. They make bad decisions and are clueless in some areas. They can become dictatorial just because they can. Their church says they can.
There are some women who rule the household with an iron hand. They married a weak indecisive man and they took control by default.
My father was the boss in our family until he overspent his income and got us into deep financial trouble. My mom told me that we were close to losing our home. So she told my father that she would go back to work and get us out of the financial problems on the condition that she would control the money from then on. Dad was desperate, so he agreed. After this, their marriage was more of a partnership.
I started my married life thinking that I was the boss. Not abusive, but still I was in control. But, I hated to keep track of money. I was not a spender like my dad, and we were never in a financial bind. My wife was good with managing money and that became her responsibility. We do not make important decisions without discussion and coming to an agreement together.
So, why not base a marriage on the strengths of each partner rather than on a “my way” basis. Husbands and wives should share responsibilities. By respecting each other and utilizing the talents they share, it creates an atmosphere of trust and mutual respect. Respect is a very important component of love. A marriage of shared leadership and responsibilities has a much better chance of succeeding happily than the old “King of the household” attitude.  

(One of the ways husbands ‘lord’ it over their wives is by controlling the family money.) 




About bwebaptistwomenforequality

Shirley Taylor writes with humor and common sense, challenging the church body to reclaim equality for Christian women.
This entry was posted in Don's View, Male Headship fallacy. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Headship or Partnership?

  1. Paula says:

    When I was a teen I did some babysitting, and I’ll always remember the time one of my nephews refused to play a game unless he was guaranteed to win. Of course I didn’t play under such a demand.

    But people who are guaranteed to get their way in life will never grow up. And they will never be good leaders since they never learned to follow another adult. Of course even male children of patriarchal families have to obey, but they are taught all their lives that they will always get to win against women, and have the “God trump card” to play.

    Likewise, the women so ruled will never get a fair game. They could outshine the man in every way but still lose to that trump card. Such rules suck the life and spirit out of her, since she learns that even God values her less. Of course, male supremacists will claim that this isn’t about unequal value. But claims are not proofs, and the proof is in the actions. She is treated, for life, on the sole basis of her flesh, as less; this is an aspect of being or essence, not role, and therefore a statement of worth or value.


  2. Mara says:

    Don, I love it when you guess post on this blog.

    In spite of all accusations otherwise, I’m not a man-hater. I love men. Especially men who are strong, yet humble and feel no need to lord over me for any reason.

    I also have no desire to lord over any man. Neither men like Don Taylor, nor men like Piper, Ware, Grudem, etc. I just want them to stop teaching other men to lord over women.


  3. Lydia says:

    Don, My father died when I was young of a long term disease. So, I suppose my mother was “leaderless”? Not at all. She was led by the Holy Spirit. And she cared for my dying father for 3 years.

    Now, since my father was not interested in incompetent women or his having to be the leader, my mother was quite prepared for the task that included finances and major decision making. And I am thankful she did not believe such silly things.

    I often think of a very patriarchal couple I know who lived by the rules and roles of what is taught these days in churches for marriages. At the ripe old age of 33, he fell off his roof and became paralyzed from the neck down. Now, his “follower” wife had to step up and it was quite an ordeal for her. They had been brainwashed he was the leader in all things. Now, she was changing his diapers and having to not only make decisions but go to work to make a living.

    She would wheel him to church in their special van and wheel chair and listen to more sermons about the man being the leader of the home. His frustrations grew listening to these “marriage rules and roles” sermons. He became impossible and she grew to hate her new “role” as breadwinner. They both felt they were living in sin and being punished for some unseen sin in their lives.

    Such is the fruit of the teaching of CBMW that has permeated most of our churches.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.