What does the Bible mean when it talks about leaving and cleaving? Why is it even important? In this article, we will discuss what it means and give you five tips on how to put this into practice to enhance your relationship.
Nothing spells love to a woman like knowing she is the top priority in your life.
When she knows she is your first consideration this settles her heart and causes her to rest because she feels secure in her relationship with you.
Establishing the correct priorities at the beginning with family relationships by placing them in the correct order will help you start strong in your new marriage.
Learning how to leave other relationships that are still significant in our life is essential. We can love them deeply still, but we cleave and direct our focus to our new spouse.
Jealousy and competition between a young wife and her mother-in-law can come from an issue of the son not leaving his mother fully.
This doesn’t mean he can’t have a wonderful relationship with his Mom, but it means he now cleaves to his new wife and she comes before His Mother.
He goes to his new wife instead of his mother and his family for advice. When her opinion to her husband matters more than her Mother-in-law’s she feels heard and respected by her husband.Establishing the correct priorities at the beginning with family relationships by placing them in the correct order will help you start strong in your new marriage. Click To Tweet
When the husband hasn’t left his mother, insecurity and a feeling of competition between the new wife and her mother-in-law can start taking root.
Even if there wasn’t any of it, to begin with in their relationship. If He hasn’t left his Mom fully then He is not fully cleaving to His wife. This keeps the new couple divided without clear lines of distinction.
This awkwardness would be unnecessary if distinct lines of allegiance were made by her husband.
If the husband leaves and cleaves to his new wife, making decisions together and looking for her input more than his family, a strong bond in their marriage starts happening. This done consistently will strengthen them as they start out their lives together.
When his family sees his loyalty and allegiance to his new wife they will help adjust to their lives being separated as a family with respect to your autonomy as a couple.
They can now embrace and learn how to adapt to their new daughter-in-law and appreciate how you cleave to one another.
This can help keep any interference from extended family members from overstepping and meddling in their kids’ business.
For a deeper look at making your marriage a priority, learn how to use the Marriage Wheel as a guide.
Here are five tips to help you as a couple learns to leave and cleave together.
Tip 1. Make having your own home a priority.
Living with parents only complicates your relationship. It invites interference and stress.
New married couples have enough to learn about each other without extended family members knowing all the details of your relationship.
Parents being able to see every aspect of your relationship isn’t healthy for any of you. Your parents have opinions and it’s hard for them to restrain them when everyone is living in the same house.
Living in your parents’ house from the beginning will not create stability in your wife’s heart.
It could make her feel vulnerable and feel like she has to walk on eggshells because she isn’t settled in her own home, she’s a guest in your parent’s home.
Parents living in the same house see and hear too many personal things about you as a newly married couple.
Quick story about Tom and Kate.
They were only married for 5 months and were already separated.
An argument happened as they were house shopping and dealing with the stress of finding their own home.
They had been living with her family from the beginning which created stress.
Kate’s Mom, along with Kate’s older children, personalized the argument they observed and things went from bad to worse. They ended up separating until they could find their own home.
The probability of an issue escalating was high because everyone had a front-row seat to their discrepancies and they all had their two cents they wanted to add to Tom and Kate’s private issues.
This only complicated their relationships within the whole family. Not long after the separation they sought outside counsel, got some wisdom about what to do, and reconciled as soon as they found their own residence.
This may have been avoided from the beginning by starting off independently in their own home without personal issues being seen by parents living under the same roof.
Tip 2. Lean on your spouse emotionally, not your parents.
Sometimes we leave physically, but emotionally our hearts have a hard time leaving parents.
Throughout your life your parents have been the emotional refuge, now your allegiance should shift to your spouse.
Chances are, your emotionally safe place has been your parents.
This doesn’t mean your family isn’t a source of emotional support for you but it means they aren’t your first choice for emotional support, your spouse is now.
Your parents have birthed you and raised you but as an adult man, you leave to cleave to your wife. Your goal should be to depend on one another emotionally before any other person.
To be there for each other, to encourage each other, and even struggle through life together helps you bond.
Through the good, bad, and hard times you lean on each other but you don’t run home to Dad and Mom.
This will help you become stronger as a couple. Your family is not privy to the same information that you and your spouse discuss. It’s private. Keeping it private is wise.
Going to your spouse first instead of your parents will cause them to see the confidence you have in her and the trust you have for her. This builds respect with your spouse and boundaries with your family.
Your heart trusts in her and the same trust can be reciprocated by your wife because she feels trusted by you which causes her to feel emotionally safe.
When sharing your needs with her first, she knows you trust her. Whether they are good or bad she feels honored by you sharing it with her.
Coming to the realization that both of you as a new married couple will be sorting through the way you were raised can be a challenge. Some of it will be good and other parts are painful to face. The merging of backgrounds brings a lot to the surface.
As you face these things. Leaning on each other will help you grow through them. Anything you go through affects your spouse because it affects you.
Your childhood and how your family did life starts getting revealed. Challenges and gratitude about your past surface.
Being emotionally connected will help you decide what you want to implement into your life as a couple.
You’ll both discover what you want to hold onto and what changes you want to make.
Tip.3. Guard against triangulation in your new marriage.
Two is company but three’s a crowd is a true statement in a marriage. You risk triangulation. This is what happens when a third party interferes with your relationship.
It might be with outside relationships coming by too frequently, friends that decide to “drop-in randomly ”, or come over three nights a week.
Any outside relationship that tends to interfere or be a priority over your wife should be a warning flag.
It might be your best friend. She gets tired of your best friend being around all the time. It’s not personal with him but she feels second to him.
If she feels like she wasn’t chosen over him resentment can start to build up.
It might be your parents that you have looked to more than your spouse.
This could cause her to feel insecure and like she isn’t a priority. She may feel like her voice isn’t heard or considered in something.
It might be a hobby. The wife of someone addicted to a hobby feels disregarded in the relationship. She is the last option if the game is on. The game is priority, not her.
She gets used to golf outings every Saturday with the guys.
She doesn’t feel like a priority and slowly, week after week drifting apart becomes miles apart as time goes on.
Not because of another person, but because of a sport that was chosen over her heart.
Triangulation interfered. The sport became an affair.
Tip 4. Make your financial decisions together.
It’s tempting to go to Dad or Mom for help. Maybe things are tight financially. You know they have it and would help.
This will open up your private business to your parents. Do you want that long-term? Will this cause your wife embarrassment and cause her to feel ashamed?
Getting insight and input is one thing, but make sure you don’t have interference in this area from family members.
There is a difference between advice and interference. Glean from their wisdom but stay financially independent and responsible, this will cause your wife to respect you more.
Being financially independent keeps your private matters private without family members knowing your financial situation.
Your decisions are your decisions even if it means you have some consequences that aren’t easy financially.
This gives you an opportunity to grow as a couple leaning on each other about making good decisions financially without your privacy feeling violated by family members.
Being private about finances and being financially responsible will cause your wife to trust you and feel secure in her future with you. She won’t be as fearful about a financial challenge or even a risk if she trusts you.
If financial irresponsibility is an issue this will cause your wife to feel insecure. She will soon lack trust in your decisions if there is a pattern of behavior that reflects poor money decisions.
To be reckless financially puts your wife’s heart at risk. She will struggle knowing if you will be responsible in the future. She will struggle and doubt she can trust you if she has experienced the results of you being irresponsible in handling finances.
She will worry and question if you will outgrow it and will hope you gain some maturity. Being irresponsible financially will cause her anxiety. Borrowing money from Dad or Mom will cause problems once again eroding trust all the way around.
It will open up your marriage for advice and input because now you owe a set of parents money. They will want to know why and what happened.
Now, your business isn’t your business.
It’s leverage that can cause family issues because you now “owe” family money and invite them into your financial decision-making because you asked them for help.
Related: Financial Advice For Young Couples
Tip 5. Leave your parents and family out of your arguments
Couples tend to have an argument, forgive each other and move on. But sometimes, it’s not before they disclose it to their family. Part of learning to fight fair is learning to keep the argument at home (not sharing it with others).
Without thinking through the boomerang effect this has they vent about something they are frustrated over that their spouse did or said to them.
Family members have a way of holding it, even if they don’t want to, they personalize it because that’s their child.
Let a little time pass and the two of you have worked it out. You have moved on. Your family, not so much? They now have the residue of that argument in their memory bank.
As much as they want to forgive and forget they don’t. Now, they view you as someone who hurt their child.
This helps no one in the relationship. The marriage or the in-laws. It starts to erode a healthy relationship with new in-laws.
The seemingly small venting session to your family begins to be a stockpiling of annoying or hurtful things your spouse has done to you.
Now, your family is starting to get a bad taste in their mouth about your spouse. Their view of your spouse is being diminished with each negative thing you say to them.
Mistrust now starts eating away at the once intact relationship because your personal problems became everyone’s business once you started venting about it to family.
The chips start getting stacked against your spouse with every revealing detail of your argument.
You and your spouse may have moved on but your family members are still holding the offense that you both moved on from.
Final Thoughts on Leaving and Cleaving
These five areas appear to be simple but they aren’t always easy as we start out in life. What is simple isn’t always easy but when we apply these principles it makes for a smoother path for couples who are learning what it means to leave and cleave to each other.
- Tip 1. Make having your own home a priority.
- Tip 2. Lean on your spouse emotionally, not your parents.
- Tip.3. Guard against triangulation in your new marriage.
- Tip 4. Make your financial decisions together.
- Tip 5. Leave your parents and family out of your arguments
Laying a foundation as a new couple by putting some boundaries in place will help you to start off on the right foot, eliminating things that have the potential to cause friction or divide you unknowingly.
A woman’s heart is settled when she knows her husband chooses her first and foremost and has her best interests at heart.
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