I’ve been told, in no uncertain terms, that it is weird, abnormal and disgraceful that I regard my husband as the head of our household, respect him, and trust him with our son. I’m a disgrace because I trust the man I married to be more than just capable of caring for our toddler. The fact that my husband is involved in our lives despite working 60+ hours a week and sacrifices all of his free time to help me around the house and to give me a break from our son is amazing. But when I say that I appreciate it, when I say I love my husband and praise him for being a strong, loving and wonderful mate? Well, then we have a problem.
That can’t be, you see, because men are idiots. Incapable. Silly. Stupid. Stubborn. The list goes on and on. These are the things I am told when I praise my husband for being involved with parenting our son. He can’t help with those decisions, I am told, because he just “doesn’t understand”. The general consensus I’ve seen and been told (one that can also be seen in modern CULTure and Disney channel) is that men are not supposed to be involved in parenting, and if they are, they are total baboons. Do you think it feels good to your husband to hear you say that he is stupid? To hear he can’t make you happy because you do everything so much better than him? Do you think he would even feel comfortable bringing his hurt to you, or would he stay quiet for fear of being subjected to your belligerent wrath?
I’m sorry that I have higher standards for my husband than being a baboon (no, I’m really not), clearly that is offensive. Punish me as you see fit, social justice warrior me to death for all I care. If the standard that my husband has set for our household is offensive, then perhaps you should evaluate your own household. Last I checked, child-rearing and marriage weren’t a dictatorship.
Let me tell you something. My husband does understand. He is capable. He is smart, intelligent, caring, funny, gentle…the list could go on and on. No, he doesn’t know everything there is to know about our son’s cloth diaper care, but he does know how to make our son laugh, smile and say “Uh-oh” as they carry out their shenanigans.
My husband is an amazing father and I am truly blessed to be a coauthor with him in the life we created in our son. Once upon a time, I nearly swallowed the koolaid that is the poisonous message of fathers being lesser in their ability to meet the needs of their children. When my son was a newborn, I had heard the drumbeat of this message so much that I was terrified to leave my husband alone with our baby for fear of him being inept.
The truth is, my husband is a better parent than I am. It isn’t an exaggeration. My husband works all the time and still finds the time and energy to stay patient through all of our son’s tantrums and meltdowns while I am in the corner pulling my hair out and crying. I may have physically carried our son for nine months, but my husband has and always will carry the both of us. Spiritually, emotionally, and in every other capacity.
My husband isn’t a sperm donor and I refuse to treat him like one. He didn’t just contribute DNA to our son. He isn’t a lesser parent just because my body was the one that sustained our son’s life for 9 months (and some change with breastfeeding). Do you know who sustained me and my son during that time? Yeah, my husband, my son’s father. He took me to the emergency room when I couldn’t go myself, he fed me, he cleaned up puke from morning sickness, he sacrificed his own healthy and safety to make sure we both made it through the pregnancy. There is no separating, dividing or measuring how much of each of us went in to our son and to try to do so is a fool’s errand.
So to my husband, one day late, Happy Father’s Day. Thank you for being a coauthor, not a contributor, in our lives. Thank you for striving to be like our Heavenly Father (Ephesians 5:25-27) in all the sacrifices you make daily for our family. And most of all, thank you for changing most of the meconium poop diapers. We love you!
Tell me something you love about your husband in the comments below!
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