Thursday, January 1, 2009

#59 Saying that their spouse is hot

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Married evangelicals frequently state that their husband or wife is hot. On Facebook, in Christmas letters and in their blog profiles, Christian guys make a point of saying:

"My HOT wife."

"Yep...sorry guys, she's all mine."

"Back off guys, she's taken."

"Me and my smokin' hot wife."

"Look guys, I scored!"

"How did I get such a hottie?"

"My wife rocks!"

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By the same token, Christian women say it too.

"My hot husband. I'm a lucky girl!"

"My soul mate - my HOT husband!"

"I am a wife to my hot husband."

"God blessed me with a hot husband. What more could I ask for?"

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I had used a picture that came up when I googled "hot christian wife," but then
the actual guy in that picture found this and left a comment. He was way too
nice about it and so I changed it. I never really thought about the actual
people in the pictures finding this.

Fortunately Christian hotness standards are not quite the same as conventional "secular" hotness standards. Value is supposed to be placed on people themselves rather than on appearance. Even so, hotness is still a valuable commodity even in Christian culture. The public declaration of a spouse's hotness is an incredibly lovely sentiment, but can become disquieting when expressed frequently and fervently. It can begin to sound as if they are trying to convince themselves of something. Could thou protest too much?

45 comments:

Shari said...

Doesn't your husband wear a shirt that says, "I 'heart' hot moms" in reference to you?

Bruno said...

not sure if I want to laugh or wretch,
do they post pictures of their "hot" spouse in their ugly christmas sweaters?
Do they have those mud flaps on their trucks, you know the ones of the silhouette of the reclining barbie?

David said...

I think the last, few sentences of your post say it well. Sure, hurray for hot 30 & 40 yr old women! I'm a 40-ish year old guy and I like that sort of thing ;) But yeah, it's expressed much too frequently and fervently.

I think part of it are churches trying to seem "relevant." Sort of a weak, and rather bald-faced, attempt to say "See ?! you can be Christian and sexy !" And seeing as how the institutional church has such an horrendous track record with healthy sexuality, it just comes across like lame advertising trying to trick me into believing something that's problematic at best :P

stephy said...

Shari - yeah but he wears it with irony, and never out of the house. I got it for him because we think, as you probably inferred, that declaration of spousal hotness is annoying. That's my love language.

mundiejc said...

I cannot believe that I know the couple pictured above.

stephy said...

Oh no. I don't know them, their picture just came up when I googled "hot wife christian." I can take it down if they want.

Brandon Scott said...

Someone sent me the link to this blog...aside from mocking me and my "smokin' hot wife" I thought your blog was pretty funny and way too true.i especially love the Stephen Curtis Chapman mullet pic. While I agree with your blog in that it's annoying how people try to seem hip or whatever- all I can do is speak for myself. All I really want to do is be me. I don't wear a ring on my left hand to be relevant or call my wife hot to try to convince myself that she is. I simply like doing it. And- now my left hand ring is bigger...does that mean I'm more relevant? Just kidding. I also actually like Hillary Clinton and am an Obama supporter. Now that I don't work for a church it's odd how I can simply be those things....but somehow, magically, when I did work for a church people like you thought I was trying to prove something? If you ask me, which you didn't, I'd say that's kind of dumb too. But I digress... I do like your blog and am sure I'll be back to laugh and enjoy.
Brandon

Christina said...

Brandon does have a point--
Whatever we Christians say or do, it seems that someone out there thinks we are trying to "prove something," even when we are being sincere.

Christina said...

P.S.
When referring to my husband, I prefer good, ol'fashioned "handsome."

Peter T Chattaway said...

Sounds like it's time for another flashback to that classic Wittenburg Door article, 'Sex, Amy Grant and the Quest for the Righteous Fox'.

stanford said...

Doth protest too much...hysterical.

That 'Righteous Fox' article was outstanding. Thanks for posting it Peter.

But...I'm not sure public, verbal affirmation doesn't have a place. In a male culture that is far more likely to make a 'why my wife is a lame bag' joke than suggest vulnerability by articulating affection...I tend to embrace this tendency.

My wife has a parallel peeve though. She hates it when I am introduced to speak in a church and someone says 'and he has a lovely wife, Amanda' as if that is her defining characteristic and pinnacle trait for a sanctified wifey to exhibit.

Mork said...

You Americans don't know what hot is!!! Go see the Movie "Australia" this is how a man woes a lady ... even though it's all b@@@@@@@!!!

BTW ...
That "hot Christian" couple are wearing stupid sunglasses!!! No hairy chest, no pendant and I bet he don't even smell of Brute 33 - how can he be hot?

stephy said...

Brandon,
I feel like a choad. Thank you so much for being so nice. You're way more gracious than I would be if I were in your position. I'll replace the picture. (At least until those people find this and call me out. heh.) You seem awesome and I really appreciate your grace towards me.
stephy

Micah said...

Oh my, how very metatextual.

I would submit that this sort of flattery is pretty frequent whether in or out of Christian culture. One of the more endearing moments of the presidential campaign was Joe Biden insisting with his usual vigor that "My wife Jill, who you'll meet in a moment, is drop dead gorgeous."

On a separate note, what of instances wherein the spouse is actually rather homely by most any standard? Do those individuals refrain or do they, as you suggest, over-emphasize the false hotness of their partner? We're going to need to get some statistics on this.

Brandon- congratulations. My wife is hot too. Yay!

Micah

stephy said...

My friend Matt said to me that a problem with the "hot" comment is that immediately everyone stops listening to the husband in order to mentally assess the "hotness" of the wife. Then if she's judged more harshly than if the husband just didn't say it. I very much agree with what Stanford said about his wife's take on it. Now can anyone suggest a new picture to replace dear Brandon and his smokin hot wife up there?

Brandon Scott said...

Stephy-

Thanks for changing the pic. I really appreciate it. Take care and happy new year!

PS: how frightening is it that you googled that and WE came up? The internet is much too small of a world sometime. As for grace... I've been in your shoes but worse so it's the least I can do. Peace to you and yours.

stephy said...

Brandon, you are really so sweet! I can't get over it. I have lived every bit of the Christian culture I talk about on here and I want to have compassion towards myself in those areas that I'm sensitve to, so it's huge that you showed compassion to me. If you google "cynical spiritual abuse survivor" you'd find a picture of me so I'm worse off. xoxo

Simone said...

Steph, what you said in your last comment about everyone ceasing to pay attention to the husband and then assessing the hotness of the wife reminded of being a kid and having your parents extol some virtue of yours and feeling humiliated. Since beauty (in or out) is in the eye of the beholder, why not let everyone form their own opinion of that without being forced to agree when they otherwise would not, or be forced to confront the boner they shouldn't have for someone else's wife.

Frankie Machine said...

Awesome thread.
I don't publicly describe Mrs. Machine as 'hot.'
For the same reason Da Vinci didn't put a little arrow pointing to the Mona Lisa, with the words "Great Work of Art!" in big letters.
Some things don't need to be advertised, because they are as clear as day.

Mrs. Machine is also brilliant, funny, and far too tolerant of my hobo ways.

David said...

If you google "cynical spiritual abuse survivor" you'd find a picture of me

And you're in good company, too, my dear hostess.

As for the replacement pic, I rather like it ;) Not only is she hot, she's, errr..."impressive" and doesn't pander to the "skinny is the only way to be sexy" meme.

Hmmmm...that begs the question of whether there's a blog post for you out there on "Christian women & weight lose."

Disclosure: I find said meme horribly destructive and think piling the idea that "Jesus doesn't want you to be fat" on top of it amounts to spiritual abuse of the first order.

Director of Altered States said...

When MY husband refers to his "hot wife," he really means I'm off my hormones!

nanecook said...

thanks for the poke w/ humor. we need it...bad.

Melanie said...

Hey, just wanted to point out that your woman in the Hot Wife t-shirt is actually the wife of a sort-of famous daddy blogger. (Dad Gone Mad). He sells those shirts on his website!

And he's Jewish, so there's that.

mme. bookling said...

Wow this is a SERIOUSLY intense comment post. Hah! You insurgent you!

Favorite quote: "I also actually like Hillary Clinton and am an Obama supporter."


teee hee.

toby said...

This is pretty funny. Do a twitter search for "my hot wife" and like 80% of the tweets come a Christian, usually a pastor of some sort. I loved this post cause I remember a pastor dude I knew was always saying stuff about his "hot wife" on facebook statuses, but I thought it was just him. When I saw this post i realized it was a "thing" in the Christian community.

here's the twitter search - http://bit.ly/FvHYZ

Roman de la rose and Pygmalion said...

I agree with you, Stephy. It does seem as if they're trying to convince themselves of their wives' positive qualities. Ironically, most of the ministers and youth leaders that I've known who praise their "hot wives" usually had unstable marriages that ended within a few years. Hmmm....

Anonymous said...

The OT and the NT and the words and actions of JC himself quite clearly condemn vanity and the worship of the body itself as an affront to G-d and probably sinful in His eyes. Therefore, raising up another's body through vanity should be discouraged by all Christians. All flesh is grass.

i am said...

i think they are trying to make a point that they can sound almost 'lustful' and still be right. credits to them man. they have waited all their life, kept themselves 'pure'. about time they are allowed to say what they want. see it from that light and you appreciate what they proclaim, though distasteful it may seem.

Vanilla Chunk said...

ya also might want to look up what a 'hotwife' is. you'll definitely need to turn Safe Search off for that one.

brian said...

Bragging about the "hotness" of one's wife is distasteful. Christian or not.

Steven Kippel said...

My wife is hot, but I don't need to try to convince anyone else that she is like so many other people do.

Jess said...

At my best friend's wedding, her sister said to me ,"My husband's so hot. Isn't he hot? Say he's hot" while he was standing there. it was so awkward.

Anonymous said...

What are their options though? If they ever want to admire someone's beauty and express, then the only option for them is to reinforce the hotness of their spouses because 1) the husband should love his wife 2) the wife should respect her husband 3) rejoice always in the Lord ( this is relevant to this topic) 4) Love one another ( including your husband and wife) 5) Do not cheat on your spouse 6) can't really get divorced whenever they feel like it 7) can't even really lust after other opposite sexes on the street.



I think they are trying to enjoy their freedom and blessings that God has for them as much as they can in Christ ( so called) within the context. Like I mention all the things they have to follow, they have limited options. It's not like they can call anyone on the street hot whenever they want to esp. if they are married. ( they'll be accused of "being lustful" for goodness sake).


I think it should be encouraged-- the Christian culture that you CANNOT witness in any other world.

But, Jess,

yeah, that lady, i think, was a little bit over the top-- but, it's her prerogative.


i am,

i think you can be lustful about your wife, not anyone else-- i think it's a blessing if you can be lustful about your wife on the top of the love you have for your wife.

MY WIFE IS HOT said...

Anonymous ( the first one),

i highly disagree. If marriage bed is undefiled, you should be able to enjoy as much as you can when it comes down to your spouse. READ Song of Solomon.

Babba-Gi said...

Who cares if your wife is hot? Is your dinner hot? All women become "hotties" when they reach menopause. You want to see a HOT Christian women, check out the Amish. I prefer the adjective "fit". It has less sexual overtones and doesn't conjure up an image of a bitch in estrus. How about a teeshirt that says "My Wife Is In Heat".

stephy said...

HAHAHA Babba-Gi! You got it exactly right.

I think they are trying to enjoy their freedom and blessings that God has for them as much as they can in Christ ( so called) within the context.

This gets Christian culture exactly right too. The culture sees their freedom as being limited somehow. That isn't true freedom.

Anonymous said...

What is true freedom, then?

stephy said...

All I know is that I think you'll know it when you see it.

Ken said...

What vanilla chunk said, I don't think you have any idea what "hotwife" means, but if google works where you live you are in for a big surprise.

Anonymous said...

http://blogs.desmoinesregister.com/dmr/index.php/category/opinion/kathie-obradovich/#23578

Tim Pawlenty is going after Iowa Christian votes, and he's using this blog to do it!

Gentry said...

likewise, i suspect that the 90s craze of "I Love My Wife" bumper stickers often fingered a philanderer.

Jim Neale said...


About 4 years ago David wrote that the institutional church had a horrendous record on healthy sexuality. I donate blood. Folks at blood collecting agencies look for healthy people to donate. They have buses that are mobile collecting sites. I have seen these buses at churches on Sunday mornings. I have never seen them at gay male bars on a Wednesday night. That leads me to think that the practices of folks who attend church are healthier than those of male homosexuals.

Dave said...

I doubt you ever see vampire buses near a Jehovah's Witness temple either. Can we therefore assume that all JWs must be gay men?

The horrendous record on sexuality refers to sexual abuse of children- something which only the most craven apologists could even consider denying- and not to sexual acts between consenting adults who may be of the same gender.

Incidentally Jim, do you usually spend your Wednesday nights cruising local gay bars? I would assume that you must spend enough time hanging around to see if a blood collection bus turns up over the course of an evening.

Marlena Machol said...

In the real world, "Hot Wife" is the term used for wives who are willing to have sex with other men, often for the pleasure of their husbands who like to watch. If they weren't so culturally closeted and out of touch, they might know that. It kind of helps prove what the author was saying; they want so badly to be "hip," but they are pathetically clueless, the class nerd who comes to school wearing a pompadour to look "cool." Everyone's laughing at them and enjoying the show, but he thinks he's cool as hell.

actionsub said...

The "I love my wife" or "I love my husband" shirts came back with a vengeance in '08 as tie-in merchandise to the movie "Fireproof". At that time, I was working for an unnamed chain Christian book store and my wife at the time had just filed for divorce. I ended up quitting my job as the cognitive dissonance of selling that product line drove me nuts!