I was reading a NLT account of the Fall (of man) recently and Eve's punishment stood out to me:
"I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy, and in pain you will give birth. And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you." Genesis 3:16
After the almost ritualistic "gee, thanks Eve. jerk." my brain gears started to churn.
Very little is said of the type of relationship Adam & Eve had before the Fall. It may have been perfectly equal. It may have been 51% Adam & 49% Eve in terms of leadership.
A lot is said of relationships after the fall. After the fall, the husband is definitely named as the head of the relationship. Yet, wives will try to control their husbands.
Ephesians 5: 22-33 tells us that wives are to submit to their hubbies like they submit to God. The husband is the head of the wife like Christ is the head of the church. Wives should submit to their hubbies (in everything) like the church submits to Christ. / Husbands are to love their wives like Christ loved the church, like they love their own bodies. / Husbands must love their wives. Wives must respect their husbands.
You can't submit to someone you are trying to control. You are trying to get them to submit to you. That's not God's plan.
You can't effectively respect someone you are trying to control. You control inferiors, subordinates, or children. You respect equals or superiors.
I have to be intentional about this, because if I stop reminding myself that I'm not supposed to control my spouse, I end up giving orders (not requests) or stating needs (with an implied polite request) to my spouse.
Not to be in control is scary, but the desire to control your husband stems from the Fall (i.e. it isn't good). Respect your husband. Submit to him. But do not control him.