Spouse or friend?

Spouse or Friend?
Why are we so obsessed with referring to marriage as friendship?

I get it, we want people to know that we have the kind of relationship as husband and wife that is encouraging, uplifting and enjoyable. Pardon my frustration, but since when did the term “husband" or “wife" not imply this meaning?  It's as if the term “friendship" is considered greater or more worthy of our aspirations than “husband" or “wife.” Maybe there are people who feel, due to the various breakdowns in marriage, there is a shadow negativity cast upon the identity of husbands and wives. But let’s be honest, the term “friendship” has been so widely compromised and applied so liberally, it’s downright offensive to use it to refer to your spouse. You can’t tell me it’s acceptable to refer to the one person you have committed your life to as equal to some person you barely know and “friend” with a click.
I believe the term, husband or wife is enough. No, it’s more than enough! Am I friends with my wife? Yes...kind of. But it is nothing like the other friendships I have. My friends each have a unique and valuable role in my life, as I pray I have in theirs. Yet, when it comes to my wife, she is more than just another friend. When I hear people refer to their spouse as their "best friend" it essentially says they are first in a long line of people they call friends. That is entirely false, at least in my marriage. My wife does not stand at the front of a long line of friends. She stands alone in the front of my life.

I am all for husbands and wives enjoying a relationship often typified by what many understand and describe by the term “friendship." But I cannot and will not support this idea that somehow adding the term “friend” or “friendship” or even “best friend” puts them in a greater category than simply calling them by the exclusive and rich title of husband or wife.

I know I may have kicked the hornet’s nest with this rant of a blog post. My aim is to lead us to conduct our marriages in such a way that we give this watching world marriages that are enjoyable, lasting and inspirational. Let’s embrace marriage in all its exclusivity and uniqueness and not water it down by comparing it with lesser things.

Posted by Andy Savage at 1:53 PM
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