The Good Wife’s Guide

By |2021-03-27T00:33:59+00:00March 26th, 2021|Domestic Violence, Healing, Marriage, Masculinity, patriarchy, Pornography, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Violence|

In 1955, Housekeeping Monthly published an article called, "The Good Wife's Guide," telling wive’s how to be a “good wife” to their husbands. This is the social norm that laid a foundation that our parents were born into and still permeates in the patriarchal, misogynistic air that we breathe. [...]

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What Happens When My Abusive Husband Gets Healthy?

By |2021-01-29T15:04:04+00:00January 29th, 2021|Church, Death, Domestic Violence, Forgiveness, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Marriage, Masculinity, patriarchy, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame, Violence|

It’s rare, but it happens. Abusive men can heal. But by rare, I mean the data is abysmal. Becoming safe and doing the work of healing only happens among roughly 1 in 10 abusive men.  Your abusive husband can heal when, and only when, he fully faces the depth of [...]

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Now You See Me, Now You Don’t: Recognizing Our Partner’s Invisible Work

By |2021-03-20T11:49:09+00:00December 14th, 2020|Domestic Violence, Glory, Kindness, Marriage, Relationships, Sexism|

Merely being a living, breathing human in this gloriously fallen world is a task in itself. Yet throwing in living in partnership, both people attempting to authentically with full desire even more daunting. Marriage is grueling, at times feels like an impossible invitation to the heights of Heaven and the [...]

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Trigger Happy: Navigating Trauma Triggers in Relationships

By |2020-11-24T21:27:12+00:00November 24th, 2020|Healing, Marriage, Relationships|

At our counseling center, we deal regularly with trauma triggers in relationships. Relationship coach Kyle Benson defines a trigger as  “an issue that is sensitive to our heart—typically something from our childhood or a previous relationship.” Another way I like to define this concept is as a trauma response. Many [...]

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Pornography Accountability Software: Yes or No?

By |2020-09-09T21:29:14+00:00September 9th, 2020|patriarchy, Addiction, Healing, Loss, Marriage, Pornography, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame|

  It's a question I hear often in the work I do with men recovering from unwanted sexual behaviors: “Is accountability software helpful or effective?” My answer, like most of the advice given in this field, is a nuanced one; yes it is, and no it isn’t. Let me explain.  [...]

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WAP: A Celebration of Female Sexuality or An Internalization of Male Supremacy? 

By |2020-09-02T17:57:56+00:00September 2nd, 2020|Domestic Violence, Addiction, Grief, Healing, Marriage, Masculinity, patriarchy, Pornography, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame, Violence|

  *trigger warning: Degrading language, graphic sexual abuse described    Patriarchy’s influence on popular culture has made objectification and violence against women normative. We are so accustomed to violence against women, we don’t even react to it anymore. Songs I grew up listening to, for example, “O.P.P." by Naughty By [...]

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Sexualizing Sorrow: How Trauma Informs Our Sexual Brokenness

By |2020-12-07T18:46:34+00:00March 11th, 2020|Addiction, Glory, God, Grief, Healing, Loss, Marriage, Masculinity, patriarchy, Pornography, Relationships, Sexism, Sexuality, Shame|

This is an excerpt from my book, The Sexually Healthy Man For us to break free from our unwanted compulsive behaviors, we must have the courage to delve deeper into our woundedness and explore what lies beneath it. We must begin to kindly yet decisively cut out the roots of [...]

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If I Were an Abuser, What Church Would I Want to Attend?

By |2020-09-10T13:34:06+00:00March 9th, 2020|Addiction, Church, Domestic Violence, Forgiveness, God, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Marriage, patriarchy, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Shame, Violence|

I am proud to feature the work of Dr. Nancy Murphy on my blog today. Dr. Murphy is a professor, Executive director of Northwest Family Life, and runs www.DVtraining.net to help educate churches in navigating issues of Domestic Violence. She has been my teacher and supervisor for the past 10 [...]

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I Deserve Sex: Addressing Entitlement Over Women’s Bodies

By |2020-02-19T19:18:56+00:00February 19th, 2020|Healing, Marriage, Masculinity, patriarchy, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality|

I hear it time and time again: “She won’t give me sex”, “She won’t give me what I deserve”, “What is wrong with my wife?” Even if these things aren’t said directly, they are often implied. Men feel they deserve sex on-demand from their wives, and that something is wrong [...]

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Marriage through the Genesis Narrative: Creating Equality

By |2020-04-07T01:39:19+00:00February 7th, 2020|Glory, Healing, Marriage, patriarchy, Relationships, Sexism|

Genesis 1-3 offers a unique view of gender roles within marriage. Genesis 1:27 begins with "God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." Males and females are both uniquely image-bearers of God, and in that, both deserve [...]

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An Option Before Divorce: What is a Trial Separation?

By |2020-02-04T20:54:24+00:00February 4th, 2020|Healing, Loss, Marriage, Relationships, Sexuality|

Excited to team up with my wife Christy Bauman on this article. We regularly work with couples who are in this stage of trying to figure out how to save or lay to rest their marriage. (Check out our marriage offerings) Check out Christy's incredible work here and her new [...]

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Breaking Down Stigmas & Sexism

By |2020-01-30T23:26:03+00:00January 29th, 2020|Death, Domestic Violence, Healing, Marriage, patriarchy, Pornography, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame, Violence|

There are many stigmas that need to be broken in the Christian tradition. The stigma of divorce in the Christian community is a phenomenon where folks are, after much pain and heartache, retraumatized and relegated to a second-class-citizen type of Christian and branded as damaged goods, a failure, or both. [...]

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Grieving a Lost Self

By |2019-12-04T16:53:03+00:00December 4th, 2019|Death, Death, Fatherlessness, Glory, God, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Loss, Marriage, Masculinity, Relationships, Self-Contempt, Sexuality, Shame|

I knew what had to be done; now I had to convince my body to carry out what my mind was telling me. It was about 9:00 p.m. when I reluctantly began gathering my belongings. I opened my pack and began filling it with my sleeping bag, a lighter, a [...]

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I Roll Back: A Poem for the Abused

By |2019-10-31T15:52:43+00:00October 31st, 2019|Domestic Violence, Healing, Marriage, Poetry, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Shame, Violence|

I am a bowling ball  heavy with holes,  unwilling to be used by you any longer.  You finger me at your will then Throw me away again and again,  and again.  I have become hard to survive; your grip is squeezing the life from me You toss me away, send [...]

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Help! My Ex is Screwing Up my Kids

By |2019-09-27T16:10:58+00:00September 27th, 2019|Addiction, Domestic Violence, Glory, Grief, Marriage, Reader's Ask, Relationships|

Reader's Ask Andrew, My 20-year marriage ended in a rapid divorce last year. We share three children ages 9, 6, and 3. As a pastor's kid, I was steeped in patriarchy and lots of chaos in a dysfunctional family that over-spiritualized life and moralized disagreements to perpetuate enmeshment. I married [...]

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The Log & The Speck: In Light of Contempt 

By |2019-09-23T01:02:48+00:00September 23rd, 2019|God, Grief, Healing, Marriage, Relationships|

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your spouse’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your spouse, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your [...]

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Hello, Good Penis: The Practice of Blessing Our Genitals

By |2019-09-10T19:18:59+00:00September 10th, 2019|Addiction, Healing, Kindness, Marriage, Masculinity, Pornography, Relationships, Self-Contempt, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame|

Our genitals are good.  They were made for giving and receiving pleasure, new life, and experiencing radical divine joy.  Many times our sexual organs get a bad rap. Sometimes we feel they have betrayed us. This happens often in the context of sexual abuse. Many victims of sexual abuse experience [...]

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The Savior & The Goat: A Relational Theory

By |2019-09-03T17:30:38+00:00September 3rd, 2019|Forgiveness, Healing, Kindness, Marriage, Relationships, Shame|

A common theme in marriage is a relational dynamic I call “the Savior & the Goat”. Typical Saviors and Goats are initially attracted to each other because of function; each person serves an unconscious role of utility and psychological soothing. For example, if I have a high level of self-contempt [...]

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Face to Face with a Dying God: Engaging Beauty & Arousal

By |2019-08-27T18:18:44+00:00August 26th, 2019|Addiction, Anxiety, Domestic Violence, Healing, Kindness, Loss, Marriage, Masculinity, Pornography, Relationships, Self-Contempt, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame|

 I was attending a professional training group to improve my therapeutic skills when I was brought face to face with deep, lingering fear and shame around my past treatment of women and idolatry of beauty.   One of the exercises we were asked to do was to pair up with another [...]

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