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Christian Counseling - Unconditional Support of Your Spouse

It is not so easy to decide whether it is right or wrong to always support your spouse. I have heard reflections from both sides of the fence. First, you should always support your partner because he or she is your first priority besides God, and you have to continue living with him or her. By giving absolute support you save the marriage from unnecessary conflict. A second view holds that a spouse may not be right in his or her perception or decision, and, therefore, you cannot support him or her. Of course, this often leads to disagreements, or worse, feelings of betrayal or being unloved.
Part of the problem is in the way people think about the issue. They take an either or nothing approach; that is, either I side with my spouse or with what I think is right. Often people think about it as a choice between accomplishing a task (protecting what is right) or keeping the relationship (protecting one's spouse). Yea, a great place to be! In that conflictual place you will win something and lose something. A wonderful choice.
Yet, there is a third way of seeing the problem that lends to a better solution. Instead of thinking in pairs--right or wrong, left or right, day or night--think in triangles--right, wrong or appropriate, left, right or straight, and day, night or twilight. In our present issue the pair is truth or spouse, while triangular thinking would see the reality of truth or spouse or both. How do you support both at the same time?
Even if your spouse wants to do something that is clearly wrong, such as planning and carrying out vengeance, it doesn't mean you can't support him or her as a person who is wounded and needs healing. Your message can be clear:

"I won't help you plan this out, but I am angry like you are and I am hurt because you are hurt. I really want you to know I am in your corner and I will remain there with you for as long as it takes. Do you want to further discuss how all this has impacted you or are you open to talking about another way to deal with the problem?"

No matter what choice we make about handling some problems in life, we discover there is rarely a perfect solution, but rather we have choices between better or worse ideas. Can you think of other ways to handle this type of conflict? Can you think of other moral dilemmas that require a different alternative?

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