A Good Marriage

I know a couple (man and wife) who have very distinct and traditional roles in their marriage. The husband is the bread winner and the wife manages the home, which includes balancing the check book and budget. If you were to see this couple walking together hand in hand in the mall, you would not guess this is the case. They are content with what they have and don't seek to get what they cannot afford. Their finances are well balanced with the spending, and if they decide together that they would like something new for the house, it is discussed between the two and decided upon.

The children are well disciplined and show signs that they know about personal hygiene and grooming. Sometimes the children fight amongst themselves, and the parents let them resolve (within the guidelines) the problems on their own.

The parents are continuously talking to the children about their future and the schooling that has to do with that future. The children are not heavily influenced by the outside world, but the parents know they will soon begin confiding in their peers about what they deem important. The parents know this and are not resistant to the fact that it is coming and coming soon. The parents figure they have until the children turn 12 or 13 until that transition. After that, they will only act as support and take on a new role as covert protector. The parents will tell the children about boundaries and let them know that they will respect theirs provided they stay safe.

The children, by then, will understand about the human growth process and how the brain works going from early childhood - adolescence, to adulthood. They will have been trained to think before acting on something (even though they will slip from time to time) and will be aware that the parents will not judge them harshly for petty errors.

The children learn more from watching and listening to their parents in the background when the parents don't think they are listening. The parents know this, so they are careful about what they discuss in the open and save the secrets for an appropriate time and place.

The parents watch closely and reward the children as they grow. They don't forget to allow the children to express themselves and they teach them about love by not telling them about it rather, by showing them how they love each other as husband and wife on a daily basis.

The parents are convinced that their children will be able to cope because as this family grew, the children witnessed their parents in conflict. Sometimes it was resolved and sometimes not. Sometimes there was compromise and acceptance and was always a win win scenario. The children saw that there doesn't have to be one who triumphs over another; they saw their parents in a collaboration. They will not understand it until they reach maturity but nonetheless, they have learned it by witnessing it throughout their upbringing.

This is only one perspective on what a marriage should look like, and I am sure there are many more. I am not a feminist - nor am I misogynistic. I realize there are many different lifestyles, and I am not judgmental if it happens to not be like mine.

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