Stephanie made an excellent point when she said: "I think that most women (probably men too, but I only know about women) greatly desire 'love' --unconditional, intimate, someone who really 'knows' us. We want this love from our husbands or from other's around us... When I rest and am comfortable in Christ's love, I don't require so much of other's around me (waiting on them to show me they love me). I believe that if we could really grasp this, it would be very freeing to our husbands. We would no longer require so much of them, maybe even more than they are able to give."
I heard Dr. James Dobson say one time that women usually require more from a man than he is able to give. He said this can be a very heavy weight upon a man's shoulders. It can bring him down. In order for their marriages to be emotionally healthy, women must seek other means of having their needs met.
First of all a woman must find her worth in Christ, as Stephanie and Joanie stated so well. Once she is secure in THIS love, she can go on to be less dependent on those around her. The scriptures abound with the love of Christ toward us.
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 8:38-39 says,
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
2 Cor. 5:14-15 tells us,
14 For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:
15 And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.
This love of Christ causes us to want to live for Him and serve Him. When a person begins to live for another, self centeredness goes out the window. When a woman knows her worth in Christ and to the Lord, and as she seeks to do the Lord's will in her life, she becomes secure in her purpose in life and becomes less "needy".
Another thing that helps a woman to be less needy is through friendships with other women. Through other women, a woman can have many of her emotional needs met and she can then be a better wife. This helps her to release her husband from the pressure of being everything to her, emotionally and otherwise. She can then be more attentive to meeting his needs rather than focusing too much on whether he is or is not meeting hers.
Remembering I Corinthians 11:8-9 has always helped me to put it all into perspective. Anything less produces an unhealthy marriage relationship.
1 Cor. 11:8-9:
8 For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man.
9 Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.
The scriptures plainly show us that our calling is that we have been created for the men in our lives, our husbands! We usually want to believe that they have been created for us, to meet OUR needs, however, when we "grow up" in the Lord, we see things differently and we see that the Lord's will is best for our marriages!
May we all seek to meet our husband's needs rather than our own!
I very much enjoyed your comments and the scriptures you referenced on this topic. I can see where I have been GUILTY of being a "needy wife". It's so easy to do! It's much easier to blame someone else in our life for not meeting our needs than to take a look inside and see that we are not where we need to be with the Lord. My marriage is at it's best when my daily walk with God is first and oremost in my life. Little things that sometimes drive me "batty" and cause me to lose my temper just roll off me when I am concentrating on what the Lord would have me to be and what He would have me to do. The flesh desires attention and we do develop unrealistic expectations in our marriages. You made a great point in saying that we want what they (our husands) are often unable to give. This issue is all part of the "renewing of the mind" that we have talked about before. When our hearts and minds are renewed daily in God's Word, we are more willing to make personal sacrifices for our husbands and families and recognize ourselves as "keepers" for our families. And our daily walk constantly renews our minds in God's Love for us and God's will for us. But we cannot do the Lord's Will in our arriages if we harbor anger and resentment for what our husbands are "not" doing or for the attention they are not showing. As you know, I have wrestled with an issue in my marriage about my husband's love for fitness and his dedication to his gym workout. It has been such a relief to me to just let this issue go! I am created as a help-meet to my husband and I am to be supportive and encouraging to him. It helped me to talk to other wives at ladies' bible study and to find out that all of our husbands have their "thing" that they like to do - you know, the thing we HATE them to do :) But they deserve to be happy too! When you put yourself in your husband's shoes, would you want to come home every day to the kind of wife you are to him? That really hit home to me and with God's help, I am making changes in my marriage. It is very humbling and so worth it! And my husband is happier and I am more fulfilled because I am relying on the Lord's love and His ability to work in me to be the wife I need to be.