We live in a world that thinks the way to make children happy is to tell them how wonderful they are – even if they’re not. Kid’s sports don’t keep score or limit how far ahead one side can get. In some events everyone gets an award. This is supposedly about building a child’s self-confidence, but studies are finding it’s doing something else, something damaging to a child’s ability to have good relationships as an adult. A growing number of college kids show clear narcissistic tendencies and more and more young people seem unable to admit wrong or offer a real apology. 

Prideful woman  © vladimirfloyd |

In short, we have a growing problem with pride. The Bible warns us about pride, while the world tells us to be proud. The Bible instructs us to put others first while the world tells us to look out for number one. The world’s way it bad for relationships in general, and for marriages in particular.

Unless you and your husband are both very unusual people, pride has been a problem in your marriage. Perhaps you’ve not identified the issue as pride because you looked at the way pride played out rather than digging down to the true roots of the behaviour. Perhaps you know he’s acting out of pride but you don’t know how to talk with him about it. Maybe he thinks you’re acting out of pride but is afraid to challenge you on it.

I suggest a discussion about this with your guy. Initiate it by talking about yourself. If you see places where you’ve hurt him or your marriage out of pride, own it, repent, and ask for his forgiveness. If you don’t see current examples in your life ask him if he thinks your pride is causing problems.

~ Paul – I’m XY, and I’m not proud of what my pride has done to my wonderful wife over the years!

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5 Comments on “Pride

  1. Off Topic: What is your opinion of Marriage Builders? I need to approach my husband, but want to be sure what I recommend we do together is effective and helpful for both of us. We are at the roommate stage and can either continue for the kids or separate, if things don’t change.

      • I just called. Even at 400 for the at home course, my husband will not agree. We cannot afford that right now. Do you know of any cheaper options from another organization? We can’t do a conference because we would have no one to watch the children.

        • Sarah, if you or your husband work, see if your company provides an employee assistance program / EAP. They offer a small number of hours of free in-person counseling (my company does 6; my husband’s does 3) and some phone therapy. That may be a way to get some help that’s not expensive. (You may also try your health insurance company or church to see if free or low cost services are available.)

  2. I’ve not seen these tendencies you’ve described in my (college) students. They seem to be humble enough to accept my correction at least.
    If anything they seem more fragile and unsure of themselves than I remember us being. White, Afrikaans, South Africans are fiercely competitive. We were pushed relentlessly and often told only perfection is good enough. If I pushed these kids half as hard or tell them stuff I was told growing up they would probably die of shock or have a nervous breakdown.

    I’ve known since I was small I had a tendency to pride. Apparently pride and arrogance is the nr. 1 weakness of my personality makeup. I do try to keep an eye on it. Probably less successfullu than I would like.

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