When a marriage is balanced and equal, it allows both partners to grow together. They can voice and address any concerns and respectfully nurture one another.
But not all marriages are equal. When your husband treats you like a child, it tilts the power and control in favor of one partner. He makes all the decisions, he is controlling her finances, the relationship, how she dresses, and even where she works.
This is an extremely unhealthy way to live and will gradually have a detrimental effect on his partner.
You wouldn’t think that in the 21st century, women allowed themselves to be treated like a child. Yet, there are some marriages where this behavior is prevalent.
So do women fall into a trap of being treated like a child, or do they secretly enjoy it?
There are a growing number of women that choose to relinquish responsibility to their partners. These ‘surrendered wives’ are confident women who are subservient to their husbands by choice.
However, choosing to be a subservient wife is different from letting your partner treat you like a child. So, if your partner treats you like a child, read on to find out why.
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When two people get married, they typically fall into roles they’re comfortable with. They might expect their partner to act in a certain way in the relationship. For example, a man may think that now he is married, his wife will do all the household chores.
A spouse might believe that her partner will provide for her and their children. But sometimes, these roles get twisted without us even noticing. Perhaps you have fallen into a child-like role without realizing it. Maybe you are used to being spoken to in a certain way. Or maybe, you were raised in an environment where this behavior was acceptable?
Just as surrendered wives willingly give up control to their husbands, so can a wife subconsciously relinquish her control. The feeling of complete surrender can be enticing to those that are afraid of the modern world.
Having responsibility is a burden sometimes. Being submissive and letting someone else take over in the relationship can be tempting. Even men can feel like this. Why do you think there are BDSM dungeons and mistresses? Or places where guys dress up in nappies and are treated like babies and ‘mothered’?
Then again, you may be married to an extremely controlling husband. In this case, treating you like a child is a form of abuse because it’s all about power and manipulation.
Children have to do what their parents say. Their lives are restricted, rules are in place, and boundaries are laid out. Break the rules or step over the boundaries and you‘ll be punished accordingly. Of course, this is not acceptable in a mature relationship.
They say you have to earn respect, but what if your spouse doesn’t respect you? Perhaps he is overly critical of every little mistake you make. Or maybe he believes that he is never in the wrong himself, so he won’t tolerate it from you.
His lack of respect towards you may make you feel as if you are being treated like a child. Ask yourself if he is patronizing or condescending to other people in his life. He might just be arrogant and demeaning to everyone. If not, then ask him why it is okay in your relationship.
Then again, perhaps it is your behavior that causes this attitude in your husband. Is there something you are doing that prompts him to act in this way? Maybe you were the baby of the family and were given special treatment by your parents?
Did they mollycoddle you or let you get away with things your siblings were not allowed to? It’s possible that as the favored child in your family you were not given the same boundaries or responsibilities as your siblings. As a result, you might confuse this kind of treatment with love and expect it in your adult relationships.
In a healthy relationship, both partners are mature.
There is something quite beguiling about having no responsibility. Again, I believe the roots trace back to childhood. Children have no responsibilities. When we are growing up, we don’t have to worry about bills, paying the rent or mortgage, getting a well-paying job, or all the other things that make us independent adults.
Handing over that responsibility to your partner can seem tempting, but it causes damage to your long-term relationship. I’ve known couples where one partner takes over all the responsibility of the household. Then in old age, when they die, the other partner is left bereft. Not just because of their sad passing, but because they have no idea how to function as an adult.
If you want your partner to stop treating you like a child you’ll have to grow up and communicate this by having the conversation.
As I previously said, some couples in a marriage naturally fall into specific roles within the relationship. Sometimes these roles are based on a parent/child relationship. This is where one person takes on a mature parental style and the other adopts an immature childlike persona.
Again, if you are both happy with these roles, at first there won’t be any problems. But, gradually, one person might begin to resent having to ‘parent’ their partner all the time. The other may want to break free from their childlike restrictions.
If you consistently act like a child, don’t be surprised when your husband treats you like one. For instance, opting out of full-time employment, going on spending sprees with your girlfriends when there are bills to pay, or even having a tantrum when things don’t go your way.
If any of these ring a bell, then maybe it’s time to consider changing your behavior so that your partner can change his? After all, you can’t ask to be treated like a mature adult if you don’t act like one. Listen to what he is saying if you want to correct your behavior.
There are some old-fashioned guys who view women in a certain way. To these men, women are helpless creatures that need a man to assist them in all areas of their life. If you can’t envisage this scenario, think back to times when women would faint at the slightest thing, when men would drape their coats over puddles so that women didn’t get their feet wet. And don’t forget that women have only had the right to vote in the last 100 years.
Some guys want to go back to this era, where ladies were delicate and fragile and needed men to protect them. This is certainly possible if your husband is from a family that had parents with strict gender roles. However, treating your partner like a child is never acceptable.
There are several reasons for this. He might be an insecure and jealous man who treats you like a child as a form of control. Or perhaps this is how he was raised and he doesn’t see anything wrong with it. Then again, he could be reacting to your behavior. Are you acting like a child?
It is patronizing and demeaning to be treated like a child when you are in a marriage. When your partner treats you like a child, they are condescending towards you. They speak with an air of superiority and arrogance, specifically to denigrate and belittle you.
Ask yourself if it is something you are doing that makes your husband react to your behavior. If not, challenge your partner and tell him he is wrong to talk to you in this way. If needed, suggest counseling. However, if you feel frightened of confronting your husband, make sure it is safe to have this conversation before you embark on it.
It depends on the immaturity and when it occurs. Is he frivolous with money? Is he unemployed with a family but refuses to get work? Does he think you should do all the household chores by yourself? Make sure you are not enabling him before you talk. Let him know that he needs to be responsible for the family to survive. He has to contribute his fair share. Remember, if you end up treating your partner like a child you’ll only contribute to an unhealthy relationship.
It might be the way he was brought up by his parents. Perhaps he was the baby of the family and treated differently. Maybe he is emotionally immature because he has never had a serious relationship before. Then again, he could just be lazy and want you to assume the mature role. Remember, marriages work best when both partners are equal.
It’s not easy being treated like a child, but hopefully, this article can shed some light on why it is happening.
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