In the past, I saw my share of hen-pecked men, those who weren't as educated as their partners and didn't make nearly as much as them, sit quietly in the foreground and do as they were told when called upon. The women berated, threatened, and even hit them behind closed doors. These were men who cheated on these women in the past, got laid off temporarily, lost jobs, had part-time hustles, or simply made less money then their women. On the other hand, there were those men, who made more money than their wives, but were just as dominating, if not abusive, at times. However, due to the topic of this article I will not go into detail about the hen-pecked men, rather let me direct you to an article I wrote on my Laboring to Love an Abusive Mate blog, see here.
Now back to these women, who take no responsibility for the demise of their relationships due to a self-centered spirit filled with pride and argument, it is unfortunate that so many don't see the errors in their mannerisms. If you argue with any man long enough, throw around some big words, and act as if you know more than him (even if it is true), at some point he is going to weary of you. Some reading this, are not guilty of such behavior. They know their men well and they also want to keep a quality relationship with them without rocking the boat. For now, they are not chasing after dreams that will further burden the marriage and household budget while there is no guarantee one will be satisfied or even find work after numerous classes and bills. There is a time for everything and sometimes planning to go in a direction that is not feasible for the moment just isn't it.
I think of all the women who may have did well doing everything they ever wanted while marriages suffered, children were not cared for as well as they should have been, but they got the degree, the big house, the car, and more--wow! (I know firsthand, because I started on that path). But their attitudes are poor, spirits are sold out for money, and they are unhappy and lonely. They awake alone, they live in a large house alone, they drive vehicles alone (or with children), and they sleep at night alone. Was all the degree chasing, overtime working, disrespecting one's husband/boyfriend during disputes, dropping children off here, there and everywhere, bragging to family and friends about wealth, and the greed for more time to chase dreams really worth it?
I think of the man in a relationship right now who wants out and he is waiting for the day that he will yell from the top of his lungs how much he despises his wife or girlfriend since she started pursuing her selfish dreams. Things she should have done before she decided to get involve with him and have sex and create babies--now she is playing catch up. Unfortunately, the dream-chaser connected with a man who didn't want the career-driven type of woman. Yet she changed and so did her attitude, now she resents her choice in a mate.
People change and so do relationships and when you know you can't handle the tidal waves, you don't stand there and get swept away by them. Some couples simply can't withstand all the stuff that suddenly comes with one or both i.e.) relocations, job loss, family business, pursuit of college degrees, new baby, new job, home purchase, etc. There are those individuals who have little patience, time, energy, and compassion for mates much less the goals, aspirations and dreams that come with them.
This is why one must choose his or her mate wisely and act like a prophet, attempting to foresee the future. What type of person am I getting involved with? Is this person headstrong, stubborn, and has unaccomplished goals? Will he or she be flexible when it comes to what I want to do in my life? How has he or she responded to little changes and how might he or she react to big change? Notice the look on your partner's face and his or her mannerisms when you announce doing something new or sharing a dream. The moment you notice opposition when it comes to pursuing something you always wanted to do, mark that person as one of the individuals that may not want to be a part of the next chapter of your life. Converse with him or her, ask how he or she feels, and don't expect the individual to be supportive especially if the family is already overwhelmed with responsibilities.
Nicholl McGuire shares more of her work and other useful material at When Mothers Cry the blog.