Are you a score keeper? I am embarrassed to say that I was. For years I was convinced that my husband wasn’t giving his all in our marriage. It felt like he was trying to get away with doing the least amount of work, and it was my job to catch him and put another number against him. In my mind he was so far in the hole, he could never climb out, even if he wanted to! I just wanted him to give 100% all the time, like I was doing, was that so much to ask?
Then my world got rocked. My parents divorced after 40+ years together with no chance of reconciliation, no counseling, and no real explanation. I was in shock for several months, processing this foreign terrain that I had no desire for. I didn’t have the energy to work, to take care of our family and home or to socialize. It would be safe to say that I wasn’t giving our marriage the time of day, much less 100%. But my husband was. He was praying over me and over our family, he showed me so much grace as I was grieving, and he never kept score.
It occurred to me that in our marriage we need to give 100% together, not each. Rarely is this a 50/50 deal, usually one of us is carrying the bulk of the load while the other is learning, growing, reeling or just exhausted from life. There was no longer a need for a score card; I had to trust that my husband was doing the best that he could, and my job was to join him, not compete with him.
Love does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 1 Corinthians 13:5
I just read “Scary Close”, (did you recommend that?), and there’s a section in there where he talks about the different kinds of manipulators. Score keeper was one of them, also judge, flopper (victim), false hero, and fearmonger. I would say I lean closest to judge, but I do fall into scorekeeping when it comes to chores or who’s turn it is to wake up in the middle of the night. I’ve begun recognizing the various tactics when people use them against me, it takes practice.
Yes, I loved that book! I was definitely a score keeper and a flopper, too. I think women in particular have a hard time with being the judge, often acting as the Holy Spirit to their spouses. The great thing is that with this new knowledge we must do it differently, it’s also the hard thing about having this new knowledge!