Hmmm….good question ladies. In my previous post ‘Cuz I’m a Lady’ I discussed how women must allow there to only be one head of the household, which generally must be the man (husband). But a question was posed to me regarding this circumstance. What if the man is not living up to his “role”? What if he isn’t providing in an adequate way in turn causing the woman (wife) to assist in his headship? I’ve found that many women are wrestling with themselves regarding this. What do you do and how do you deal?
Here’s the dilemma: You’ve been with your significant other for some years now, maybe even have children together. He wants you as the woman to respect his authority, however, he struggles to hold a regular job, with little ambition and no career in sight. In my opinion there are a couple of perspectives on this and I’ll give you both in MY opinion. So let me just say, this is simply my opinion based on my life experience, therefore I respect all opinions and points of view. Please chime in and comment with your agreements or disagreements!
First, to the woman in this circumstance whom has already made a marital commitment to a man by taking vows “for better or worse”, it will require a little more patience and work on your part, and I’ll tell you why. My husband told me once that women actually are the ones in relationships who do the “choosing”. WE decide if we want to let a man into our lives and consequently into our beds. With that said, my married sister, you chose that man for whatever reason which at the time you believed would be enough to live with for the rest of your lives. “But he’s changed and he’s not the man I married at first” you say. Was one of those qualities being a steady provider financially? If he was doing this consistently, what caused a change? There must be a reason why he isn’t doing it now. Have you communicated with each other about what the plans are for the future of your family financially? If not, why not? Communication is essential for a marriage to not only work, but for it to LAST. Your marriage will need to be able to withstand a lot of obstacles, and financial instability is one of them. However I do understand the frustration of having to live with a spouse that isn’t pulling their weight so-to-speak, especially if this has been going on for YEARS. One thing I’ve learned about humans is that we all feed off of encouragement. When I say encouragement, I mean having someone or something to motivate us to get off of our butts and get to work on whatever it is our goals are. Yes, it is true that some people are just plain old lazy and don’t want to ever be more than what the little effort they put forth provides them. But for the most part I would say that we all appreciate a little push here and there. So, have you encouraged your husband to reach out for his goals and ambitions? Every time my husband has been in a position of promotion in his career or on the other end, he’s gotten down on himself and feeling discouraged; I’ve always been his biggest cheerleader in both of those scenarios. Now, I’ve been married for 9 years and my husband and I are 30 years old. We got married quite young, so I’d like to think that our ups and downs and experiences can be a voice for the young married couples. Having said that, my husband says that a man always wants to feel that his wife supports him and his ideas and not one that’s going to be overcritical of him.
Some men feel that their spouses take opportunities to emasculate them when they are struggling or have a failure. “Yea you’re just like your lazy father”, “you don’t do nothing for us up in here anyway”, “I’m the one paying the bills in here”. Uh oh does that sound like you girlfriend? If my husband is up for a promotion I say “babe you got this, you’ve worked hard for it, don’t be nervous or anxious about it, etc.” If he’s gotten discouraged by a misstep or a roadblock I say “hey let’s look at the positive in this, how we can make this situation work for you in the future for your long term success.” You can do the same thing for your hubby. If he is employed but not making that much and its sort of an “odd job”, encourage him to search for a career in something that’s more lucrative to support your family’s financial demands and if possible a career that’s more fulfilling. If he is unemployed and “searching” for that job that will hire him, but while he’s “waiting” for a response from that last interview, all he’s been doing is smoking and playing the xbox; maybe encourage him to first consider a career doing something he’ll enjoy and then use that xbox time to work on the skills that will guarantee a position doing just that! Did you catch that ladies? The key word in that last part was ENCOURAGEMENT.
You chose this man as your partner for life; why not help him to become the best man he can be, for you yes, but more importantly for himself? “Well I’ve done these things Avi, on many occasions.” If your husband was always lazy before you married him, sis I hate to break it to you, but you set yourself up for this circumstance, you made the commitment, you’ve got to deal with it as best as possible. Stand strong my sister! If you stay on top of him becoming a better provider, one of two things is going to happen: 1. Your encouragement will sink into his mind and heart and he’ll start to ACT on it! 2. He’ll get too tired of hearing your encouragement and then he’ll leave you! Whether it be through physical leaving or cheating. Either way, YOU’RE FREE! Seriously, this is your opportunity to learn from this mistake and do better in your choosing the next time! Now, if your husband used to be hard working and ambitious when you met and when you got married, then make it your business to find out what caused this drastic change and HELP HIM FIX IT! I would bet money that your man is just as disappointed in himself as you are of him. Remember for better or for worse. At the end of the day, for this situation regarding my married sisters, it’s all about the ENCOURAGEMENT!!
Now, for my single but dating and not yet married ladies, here’s my point of view. Your circumstance is a little different. You haven’t made that LIFETIME commitment yet to your man. So, you have the opportunity to assess whether this relationship is worth holding on to. Just as the advice I gave to my married sister, I would ask, was your man financially stable when you met? Is that one of your requirements for marriage? And, if it is one of your requirements, is he working toward that goal, and how long are you willing to wait for him to achieve this goal. Remember, ladies you are the ones doing the choosing. It’s ultimately up to YOU whether you make this man your life partner. So, if you are dating, take this opportunity to evaluate yourself AND your options. If you love the man you’re dating, encourage him to reach for his goals financially, so that you and your family may feel secure in being cared for. There’s that word again, ENCOURAGEMENT. It’s truly a loving thing to be an encouragement to someone especially the person you plan to spend the rest of your life with. Once you can answer the questions I posed to you above, then at this point it will be much easier for you to decide if he is worth holding on to, or if you should cut your losses and consider what your future will be like being married to a man that won’t work.
Now, of course there are MANY other important factors that should be considered when choosing a marriage mate! Compatibility, compassion, spirituality, etc. But this post is only focusing on this particular dilemma, and this is the way I see it! As always please comment, like, and share! I hope to get your thoughts on this!