June 14, 2011
Contributed by guest writer, Bobby

This was written in response to a request in the comments section of an essay I wrote entitled " Of Diamonds and Babies". It was such a surprising request. I thought that, yes, maybe it would be a good idea to let wives know what it is that would make a husband and father want to come home after work; to seek refuge in his home and family, to be 'reintegrated' into the family. It was surprising for it is not something you hear asked very often today.

I do have to explain however, that it was only through the experience of my first marriage that I learned what it was I longed for. This was a very troublesome time for me because my wife was an alcoholic and passed away at a young age leaving me with two small sons. I've since remarried and my desires for what makes a man want to return home after a day at work have been pretty much fulfilled. Here goes....

My dear wife,
Please, I implore you, do not wait for me to come home to discipline the children for an infraction that occurred while I was at work. If they do something wrong, deal with it then and there. When you tell them "Wait til your father comes home!" they now dread my coming home and are filled with fear not knowing what to expect. I do realize there are situations that I need to be the heavy, and I have no qualms in doing my part, but the everyday, small stuff, please...take care of it. You are there, you are witness to it, you are their mother and their authority. I for my part, promise to do the same when I am home after work and on the weekends. I want to be welcomed home by both you and our children at the end of a day at work.
There is nothing worse than knowing  my own children fear me because I am seen as the ogre that brings punishment when I come home from work. We both want our children to like us, to love us, but sometimes we have to do things that they do not like and disciplining them is one of them. Please...let's share in this, our duty.

I know there are times when I come home that I do not allow our children to do something or let them go somewhere, even if you see nothing wrong and at other times you've allowed them these things. Please...trust me in this. Women have intuitions; men, we have gut feelings. If I tell them no at certain, seemingly, innocent requests, I may not have a good explanation of why they can't but I have a gut feeling that it would not be a good thing to let them do this or let them go there. I may not even be able to explain it to you in words, but just trust me on this ok?  I've depended on gut feelings many times in my life and more times than not, I was right in following it. If you hear me tell them, after their asking me "why?" for the twentieth time, "Because I said so!"....now you know why. I'm not trying to be mean or unreasonable...I just love my children and want no harm to come to them. And sometimes my love for them has no explanation.

Do not be afraid to say no to them at times. They have to learn temperance and discipline in their lives and sometimes the only way they learn this is to say no to them. If you keep saying yes to all their requests, then I become the only one to say no and that is not good. They now know who to go to when they want something and it won't be me when I get home. Allow me the chance to say to my children, "Sure, you can go there...sure, you can do that." I want to see that smile on their faces too and not just the frown that comes with my having to say no again and again, they won't be happy to see their father come home from work. I long for that...to know my children are happy I'm home.

Remember that time you apologized for the messy house when I got home and you were scrambling to pick up the house? Please, don't apologize and don't worry. I know what you deal with all day, and all you have to do. I know the reasons why its messy, I can see those reasons playing outside right now. All the times I come home to a clean house, a comfortable home, makes up for the few times it may not be picked up to your liking. We may live in a shack, but coming home to you and my children and feeling welcomed is worth more than living in spotless mansion.

When I come home tell me about your day, let the children tell me about theirs too while we have dinner. You know how much I love having dinner together, with the whole family. It's really the only time I get to hear what has been happening while I was away all day. It's the time I have to hear what my children are thinking and doing in school. To get into those little minds of theirs. I do want to hear about the problems you had to deal with during the day, but then, after you tell me? Tell me about the good things that happened too. No matter how small and unimportant  you might think they are. Oh...and while we're at it? Let me sputter about my work too. You're the only one I have that will listen. Now...now  you know why I don't want the television or the stereo playing while we eat. I like to be focused on what's important to me, my family. 

Ummm about that "honey do" list you gave me Monday after work...No, I haven't forgotten it. I didn't get to change that door knob on the bathroom door yet...you know, the one that swings open sometimes when you are using it, but that's because we are a bit short on cash right now. I just forgot to mention it to you, but I want that done just as much as you do. And the lawn...I would have done that two days ago, but I hurt my leg at work the other day and I would have told you, but you know how much  you worry. I'll get that done right after dinner. Yes, I know sometimes you think I'm lazy....and yes, you're right, I am sometimes, but most times there's a good reason I haven't fixed or haven't done something. Like the other night, I meant to work on the shed and get that done, but Joseph asked me to play catch with him. No...I didn't get teach him anything profound about life, or talk to him about his homework, but I did enjoy my time with him. I think he'll remember that more than my finishing the shed, besides, the shed isn't going anywhere...but someday, my son will. I promise to get those things done on that list.

You know the other day, when you were doing the dishes and I came up behind  you and wrapped my arms around you and took a few liberties that I probably shouldn't have? I know I was being annoying, but I also saw that slight smile you had on your face while you were saying to me, "Stop that!!!". Wrapping my arms around you was just something I needed to do. I may have been amorous at the time, but I also knew this was not the time or place, with you doing the dishes and the children still up. Yet, I let you go feeling content because you didn't shove me away or get angry at me. I came away feeling you still wanted me and I want to thank you for that.

Oh...one more thing my dear Wife, after dinner, when all the dishes are done, the children are all washed up and ready for bed and I go sit in the recliner, please, don't tell them, "Leave your father alone, he's had a hard day." Yes, I had a hard day and I'm tired, and I appreciate  your concern, but let them come to me. Let me read to them or help them with their homework for I enjoy that and at the same time it gives you a chance to do a few things you enjoy, like the other night, when you spent a half hour talking to your mom on the phone and then finished up that sweater you're making for your sister.

That night, when we were all in the living room after dinner, you and I and the two oldest were reading and the little one was 'drawing' pictures in her scribble book in the center of the floor between all of us. Remember what happened? All of a sudden she looked up at you and said, "I'm happy!". Just like that, and with no explanation. You asked her why and she thought for a few moments and said, "I don't know, I'm just happy!". That my dear Wife, brought tears to my eyes. That my dear Wife is what I love when I come home to my refuge at the end of the day. In her few words, she told both of us that we succeeded in providing a home for our children where they feel safe, comfortable, contented and loved even if she couldn't explain it. I come home to what you call chaos, I come home to what I call my refuge.

With Love,
Your Husband

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What is a woman? What does it mean to be feminine? There is softness and hardness, compassion and ferocity. There is contentment and adventure, freedom and service. We're conundrums, especially to ourselves, but we all, in some way, possess beauty, creativity, intuition and love. We were made for love, and we are loved, cellulite and all. Here we aim to show every woman the richness and beauty of her own femininity and explore current issues relating to women in our world. We also wish to share our own experiences - exploring the joys and challenges of stay-at-home moms and single professionals and everyone in between. Welcome! So glad you're here!

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