Saying Goodbye to Male Chauvinism

By Jinqu, South Korea

I’m a Christian. Although I haven’t believed in God for very long, during these days of following God, I have felt it is God’s love and salvation that has made me, an arrogant and conceited man, have some changes, which is thought to be a miracle by both my family and me. God’s wondrousness and love are too immense to speak of, so I can only use limited words to witness God’s salvation for me and share my experience with you.

When I was eleven, my mother deserted us four siblings and ran away with another man. At that time, this was huge news in my village, and the villagers all laughed at my father and said that he couldn’t even control his wife. Because of this, my father, an honest person, was so angry that he suddenly lost all his teeth when having meals and he was completely dispirited; we siblings were also teased by the villagers. After I grew up, I inwardly resolved: “I won’t be as weak as my father. After I get married, I must control my wife and closely watch her, never letting her betray me.” Living in such a family, I was much more mature than my peers and also became very grumpy.

Afterward, I knew my wife and married her. My wife is mild and virtuous and diligent, and she takes good care of our child and me. But being influenced by the thing about my mother, I thoroughly displayed my male chauvinism in my family, always commanding my wife to do this or that, and even letting her serve the food to me at mealtimes. My wife, so to speak, never denied me anything, so I became more demanding and scolded her more often.

angry husband worried wife
People image created by Bearfotos – Freepik.com

Once, someone called my wife from a strange number, but when I answered the phone, the caller hung up. After a while, that happened again. In an instant, I doubted whether my wife had lovers behind my back. So I restrained my anger and questioned her: “Who called you from the strange number? Why did he call you?” My wife said: “Why are you so narrow-minded? You are always suspicious about me.” Hearing her say this, I was even angrier, so I began to quarrel with her; as my anger grew and grew, I even beat her in my fury. My wife felt so angry and wronged that she asked me for a divorce. Two days later, I knew the phone calls were from China Mobile. I was very regretful and wanted to apologize to her, but I couldn’t let go of my face, so I just let the thing go.

Another time, a relative came to my home while I was playing mahjong in my friend’s home, so my wife came to look for me. When she said hello to my friends, I didn’t hear her since I was busying myself with playing. So I thought she hadn’t greeted my friends, which made me feel like I lost face in front of so many people. At that time, I suppressed my anger and didn’t say anything. But after we got back home, I couldn’t hold back my anger and raged at her regardless of my relative’s presence: “Why did you not say hello to my friends when you saw them? Do you know how you made me lose face just now? Aren’t you polite? …” Before my relative, I said many unpleasant words to my wife and I also didn’t listen to what my relative advised. But my wife didn’t say anything nor refuted me. After I said enough and my anger subsided, I calmed down and thought about what had happened to me. My wife never denied me anything, but I quarreled with her even over such a small thing; I really shouldn’t have done that. But I just couldn’t control myself.

Such things had become more and more common. Sometimes, because of the pressure of life and work, I often sought relief in drinking, but after I got drunk, I would rage at my wife, never considering what harm I would bring to her but just satisfying my own way to relieve my anger. Although I felt remorse after that, on second thought, I took nothing serious, “As a man, I should act like this, or how could I control my wife? And how else could I build up my prestige in my family?” Gradually, our relationship was not harmonious or intimate anymore but became more and more estranged. My wife feared me more and more. Before me, she did everything carefully while reading my expression, afraid to endure a barrage of criticism from me if she did something incorrect. Living in such an environment for so long, my wife felt depressed and miserable. She requested a divorce several times, but for the sake of our child she tolerated it again and again. However, being arrogant and conceited, I didn’t exercise restraint because of my wife’s tolerance. I thought that men was the head of the family and women shouldn’t have the last word in anything, so I still wantonly displayed my male chauvinism, my authority as a man. My family became a place where I exercised autocracy and held all of the authority, as a result my family couldn’t feel the warmth of a home. My relatives and friends often advised me to change my temper, but I thought that I couldn’t change the dignity of a man; otherwise, it meant I was weak and incapable. So I just sustained and maintained my family like this, not knowing when it would break up. For this I felt great pain, and in my heart I was indebted to my wife, but I didn’t know how to change my bad temper. At that time, I also occasionally went to the church, wanting to change myself through believing in the Lord. But when I encountered things, I would still lose control in spite of myself.

October 5, 2016 is a day that I will never forget in my life. On that day, my elder sister and her friends spread the gospel of the kingdom of Almighty God to me and my wife. From then on, my life had turned for the better.

sharing during meeting
People image created by Freepik

During a meeting, I talked to brothers and sisters about my being apt to lose temper. Combined with their own experience, several brothers talked about their process of knowing and transforming themselves, and read two passages of God’s words to me: “Once a man has status, he will often find it difficult to control his mood, and so he will enjoy seizing upon instances to express his dissatisfaction and vent his emotions; he will often flare up into rage for no apparent reason, so as to reveal his ability and let others know that his status and identity are different from those of ordinary people. Of course, corrupt people without any status will also frequently lose control. Their anger is frequently caused by damage to their individual benefits. In order to protect their own status and dignity, corrupt mankind will frequently vent their emotions and reveal their arrogant nature.” “Regardless of whether one becomes angry in the sight of others or behind their backs, everyone has a different intention and purpose. Perhaps they are building up their prestige, or maybe they are defending their own interests, maintaining their image or keeping face. Some exercise restraint in their anger, while others are more rash and flare up with rage whenever they wish without the least bit of restraint. In short, man’s anger derives from his corrupt disposition. No matter what its purpose, it is of the flesh and of nature; it has nothing to do with justice or injustice because nothing in man’s nature and substance corresponds to the truth.

Through the revelation of God’s words and the experiences and understandings of brothers and sisters, I came to know that the root of my frequent anger is that I was dominated by my satanic disposition of arrogance and conceit. I also knew that: After being corrupted by Satan and influenced by its thoughts and views, such as “Man is the head of the family,” “I shall prevail on earth as well as in heaven” etc., I thought that man was the head of the family and should hold power and decide all things in the family, and control his wife, or he would lose the dignity as a man, which meant he was weak and incapable. Especially for the matter that my mother ran away with another man, I even more thought that it was due to my father’s weakness and that I couldn’t turn out like my father, being laughed at by others, so I became more and more arrogant. To build up my prestige, to protect my image and status, I controlled and oppressed my wife to make her listen to me in everything, treated her without tolerance or patience; once something wasn’t to my liking, I would lose my temper to gain my prestige. I thought back to how I got along with my wife: I decided things all by myself and ordered my wife about in a domineering manner without any consideration and tolerance or understanding and respect for her; when something didn’t go my way even slightly, I would flare up into a rage to show my power as a man, never caring about her feelings. My restraining and controlling my wife brought her nothing but pain, so she wanted to divorce me and my family was on the brink of falling apart. Now I realize that I did not live out human likeness at all but bore the likeness of Satan. Just as God’s word reveals: “acting savagely like wild animals in mountains and rough like the king of the beasts—is this the likeness of a human being?” I recalled: “When something didn’t go my way even slightly, I would get angry with my wife to show my male chauvinism. Isn’t what I lived out the likeness of a beast, savage, violent, and unreasonable? In what ways do I have the likeness of a human being? Such things disgust God, I can’t act like this anymore, living based on the arrogant nature of Satan.” So I made a resolution in my heart: I shall firmly forsake my flesh, practice the truth, and live out the likeness of a human being.

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