When men don’t care for their wives

Note from Shirley – Please check by for a new post Monday, March 21.

AARP Bulletin magazine had the following letter to the editor on March 2011:

Letter to the editor: Discussing older adults moving in with their children, she (Jane Bryant Quinn) wrote, “This includes widows whose husbands didn’t leave behind enough money for them to live on.” I thought the women’s movement taught us to take responsibility for our own futures and not to blame the poor dead husband.

In this month’s AARP, Jane Bryant Quinn, personal finance expert, writes about When Two Become One.  She says in her article “For all their planning, this capable couple hadn’t asked a simple question: How will Jean live if Charles dies soon after they retire?”

Now, what on earth does this have to do with equality for Christian women? 

Let’s return to the Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood.  Look at Affirmations #6.  “In the family, husbands should forsake harsh or selfish leadership and grow in love and care for their wives; wives should forsake resistance to their husbands’ authority and grow in willing, joyful submission to their husband’s leadership.”

This clearly says that the husband should care for his wife (plan for their retirement, not make risky investments).   She should quit resisting and let him do it – because he is the man of the house.

But what happens when he doesn’t know beans about taking care of the money?  We saw that in Egalitarian relationship – with male veto privilege.  This man wasn’t even cashing his paychecks, much less taking care of his wife’s future financial needs.

I met a pastor like that one time when I worked for Baptist General Convention of Texas.  We sent him a monthly check to help with church expenses, even though we knew that the money was going into the pastor’s pocket as his salary.  The requirement for getting a check was that they send in a monthly report.  One pastor would not send in the report on time.  After hounding him and several months of no reports, he called me wanting his check.  I told him to mail his report. He said that he had come the office with his report, but we were closed!  Suddenly it was my fault that he didn’t get his check.  He wasn’t preparing for his family’s daily needs, and he certainly wasn’t preparing for the future benefit for his wife.

The first writer blamed it on women’s lib and says that we can’t blame the poor dead husband if the wife doesn’t have enough money to live on.  The Danvers Statement says that the husband is to prepare for the financial care of his wife which would include after he is dead and gone.

So who is right?  This is where true equality comes in.  The one who is best at financial matters should make the investments and prepare for their future.  This should be done in full knowledge with the other partner.  That person should not have to ask permission before making a decision.  But the other spouse should be fully aware of all of the financial situation, and particularly should know what plans are being made for the future of each other.

The Danvers Statement assumes that men are better at taking care of the financial decisions, just because he is the man. We know that is not so.  Apparently God didn’t give all men the ability to be wise financial stewards.


About bwebaptistwomenforequality

Shirley Taylor writes with humor and common sense, challenging the church body to reclaim equality for Christian women.
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8 Responses to When men don’t care for their wives

  1. Jane says:

    It’s crap like this, is why I can’t stand the Christian Culture anymore…

    fact, the majority of poorest of poor IN this country alone, is elderly women. Widows. Single Moms.

    Even WITH a husband doing all he can to provide for the future, this economy simply does not work a viable Security for the majority of WORKING CLASS. FACT.

    Here’s the gist ladies, for women to rely solely on the husband for retirement [IF one can retire] is suicide,

    seriously, it’s just asinine. These Biblical literalistic nut-jobs, are really, telling women to just deny Reality, live in some fantasy fairy tale and aiding in their destruction and misery, while skimming the pockets of the very men who flock to hear these idiotic enabling selfish philosophies —

    they don’t even deserve Air time. It’s downright foolishness to pay attention to them.

    Now, the sad reality is, there are many women caught in the trap, and not just in religious looney circles either, but even in secular, with men who simply are just too wrapped up in their own entitlements, to give a darn about Women’s futures,

    and this bottom line, is really what patriarchy and misogynist culture is, and Why women, religious or not, really need to fend for themselves IF they can, financially, the majority of working lower to lower middle class, will struggle no matter what. But the One difference is,

    without the belief in some fairy tale knight that rescues women, at Least, women who are living in misery, KNOW what’s up–not so with women still hanging onto Delusions,

    and it’s the perpetuation of Lies and Delusions that these literal Biblical woman hater types with their male supremacy, is in fact


    They are Cons, there are Cons in hard core Prisons, that are more Humane,

    and that’s a Sad fact of the matter.



  2. Lydia says:

    This sort of thing used to make my dad furious. You know how many new widows in the church had no clue about their finances. He would try to help them sort things out and would not believe their husbands encouraged or allowed such ignorance of things so important. Back then, bank accounts were frozen even from the wife withdrawing until probate. Women really had no financial rights.

    They have NO excuse today. And are fools if they don’t know what is going on.


  3. kbonikowsky says:

    I have been challenged and inspired by your blog so much. I’ve been lurking for awhile! I’m impressed by your courage. Thanks.


  4. Mabel says:

    My husband was the sole bread winner for the first 20 years of our marriage, but he forced me to handle finances. I am glad he did, as he died at the relative young age of 63. I am therefor quite capable of handling finances. Many husbands actually think they’re taking care of their wives by handling all finances. It makes me furious to see that. Our patriarchal culture encourages men to “take charge” and women to shirk their responsibilities, and consider ignorance bliss. My husband was quite a macho man, but soon after we were married, he told me: “Before you ask me a question, think for the answer yourself. Only ask if you have to.” I have done it ever since.


  5. Anne says:

    The problem with veto privilege is also that it can lead into problems when the couple are arguing based not so much on what they personally want, but what they think is the wisest decision to make. Example from a couple I know: She thought that they should spread their money over several bank accounts, to not put all eggs in one basket. He wanted to have just one account where all the money would wind up. Cue the banking crisis a year later. The bank where he had their one account goes bust.

    On the previous post you made, the egalitarian with male veto privilege: this guy is unbelievable. It’s black and white what he was doing – he wanted to be in charge from the start, THEN found the “verse” that said husbands are the heads of their wives and wives must submit (the WORST case of scripture twisting I have ever seen. PERIOD).


  6. Amy says:

    My husband hasn’t cared about me or any thing in 45+ years. We did have sex once, my first, last and only ever. From that time he has hated me, sex anything to do with marriage. He won’t even sleep in the same bed with me, he eats and sleeps in the basement, works constantly no days off all holidays and all of his vacation. He is on the high end of asexual and antisocial No friends, hates women and men and the world in general.


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