What Kind of Husband do You think You Are?
Marriage is an interesting phenomenon. It comes in all shades and colour, and each plays out uniquely. No number of lectures before an experience of marriage can give you the exact picture of how your marriage will look like in reality. You will only know when you get right into it and begin living it
Just know that how yours turns out, is indeed your cup of tea, so to say. It is your business to live and deal with. Comparing yourself with some other couple will only increase your frustration, ungrounded nostalgia, and wishful thinking. You could emulate good aspects of other marriages, but yours will always be unique.
One cannot undermine the fact that lessons learnt about marriage, reading good books on marriage and seeing couples exhibit positive values in marriage, goes a long way to helping a person develop the right attitudes towards marriage, and perhaps, even in the choice of a life partner. So, it could contribute towards the success of your marriage eventually. Nonetheless, how your marriage becomes or what you make of it still lies largely in the hands of the persons involved in that marriage union.
For this particular piece, this article is interested in highlighting the kinds of husbands that a woman could possibly find within a marriage union. We may look at the kinds of wife some other time.
This is the type of husband who showers wifey with gifts. Name that anniversary, he does not forget dates, he is there with a gift for his wife. You can be sure that every woman wants a man who expresses his appreciation of her by his way of giving gifts. What impresses the wife here may be his thoughtfulness, which a lot of men ordinarily may not have. The size of the gift or how much it cost isn’t the point. Rather, the fact that he can be that thoughtful in expressing his affection in this way, is what is remarkable.
As much as a lot of women would love to have such a kind, generous and thoughtful husband, sometimes such husbands tend to marry wives who do not necessarily appreciate his gestures. Maybe over time, she gets used to it and begins to take you for granted. Rather, an ideal combination would be that such husband marries a humble wife who really appreciates the gifts and is able to see beyond the size and the cost of the gift; a wife who appreciates her husband even more, for his thoughtfulness.
This type of husband was brought up properly to know that the work in the house is not left to females alone. He has learnt from parents and guardians that every day you are obliged to do your bit in the home, to ensure the smooth running of the house. While growing up, this kind of husband learnt how to sweep, clean the house, wash the car, boil water, cook in the kitchen, wash plate, fetch water, clear the grass, replace the bulbs, care for younger ones, drive and so on. Anything that needed to be done around the house, he could do.
This may not necessarily mean that he was overworked. There were other persons who shared in these house-chores, but he as a male child, or house occupant, he was not excluded from domestic chores. Hence, he grew up knowing that he is not too big or too special to do any of these tasks as may be needed.
As a husband, he may not necessarily carry out these tasks. However, as the need arises, he easily jumps in and supports his wife. Since he has experienced the weight of carrying out these domestic chores, he is sensitive to the need around him. He will not fold his hands, raise his legs on the table, keep pressing his phone, read newspaper, get glued to his laptop, and let his wife do EVERYTHING in the house, in the name of being the woman. “It is her job. Let her do it.” Rather, he knows that his wife is not a donkey and a slave who works endlessly, while he simply does only that which he likes to do, for himself.
This husband may have relatives and domestic helpers who carry out domestic chores, but even these persons soon get to know that this husband has been through it all. He offers them home grown advice on how to be more efficient in domestic matters. Yes, he knows it. He has been there. What is wrong with a man entering the kitchen at some point to cook? After all,
“The knowledge of cooking does not come pre-installed in a vagina. Cooking is learned.
Cooking – domestic work in general – is a life skill that both men and women should ideally have.
It is also a skill that can elude both men and women.” – Chimamanda Adichie
The wife enjoys this kind of husband mostly when she is expectant and heavy with child. You can be sure that every woman, especially a pregnant wife would long to have a domesticated-dude for a husband. Instead, a lot of husbands do not know that a pregnant woman needs lots of physical support and physical assistance. If he is sensitive enough, he can offer help to his pregnant wife even when she does not feel free to ask for his help. Some just close their minds and expect the wife to do all things, or find a way to get things going like before. In this situation, lots of pregnant women have labored themselves, some close to their death. Here, a domesticated dude comes in handy like a real savior.
- Rich and Clueless
As the name suggests, this husband has got money but has no idea what is happening in the life of his wife, leave alone, his children. If he is the supportive kind, he would give the wife money for the home, pays school fees, pays house rent, take loans or mortgages if needed, buy cars, and provide foodstuff for the house.
Necessary as all these may be to the home, this husband knows little or nothing about the persons in his life – his wife and children. If asked, he would not be sure what class each of his children are in. He cannot say for certain how his wife spends her day, or what shoe size his wife wears. If she is running a business, he has likely never visited the business place, and if he does, looks more like a customer passing by.
Here, the wife feels like she is there to help him answer “married man”. This man is not involved in her life. She is like a machine who simply works for him and ensures that he has a place to call home and has a family to return to. She may feel like she is simply married to his money or to a shadow of the man she fell in love with.
He says to her: “Why should you complain? Is there anything you have asked for that I have not provided?” Yes, he provides everything, but he is not available. He remains emotionally uncaring and largely unreachable.
This husband is a good husband in certain respects, but clueless with regards to his family. He lives in his own world outside the home. Interestingly, some wife out there would love to have this kind of husband. You ask “Why”? It would likely give her the space to do her own thing, as opposed to this one who is on top of everything.
- On Top of Everything
This husband? Besides being ‘the Oga at the top’ and on top of the other, nothing else escapes his control! He is in control of the room, the kitchen, the environment, including the ‘Other room’. He is also in control of even the nitty-gritties of his wife’s behavior. He makes a comment when she passes. He wants food cooked in a certain way – nothing less! He expects his presence to be fully recognized and his authority felt by all and sundry. Even the children run into their rooms when this dad comes home. To them, he is more like a tyrant, in fact, he is the tyrant that never was.
He whines and grinds like he knows it all. He is his wife’s greatest critique. Her faults and nuances never passes him by. He has to make a remark or try to correct her. With this husband, something is wrong with everything, and the best part is that he knows it all.
Such husband can literally worry his wife to her early grave, if she is not careful. Though, it doesn’t have to end that way. It is more for this know-it-all husband to grow in his self-awareness so that he can begin to see how he is driving those around him crazy. Though, this is in an extreme case. Some of such husbands act this out mildly and their nuisances are tolerable.
Wifey, you know your man, so find a sane way of dealing with his type to avoid any psychological breakdown on your part. Babe, it is possible. Ask for help if you must.
This kind of husband gives the impression that he is preserving himself. What for? I have no idea. You want to know his philosophy? Ok, here: Do all you can for me, while I do just what I want to do. His wife can bend, wipe his shoes and buckle his belt, but he would never do that for her. He is all about his own work and any other thing he thinks he should do, and that is all. Everything else is left for his wife to figure out.
He sleeps when he wants and for as long as he wants. He does not miss out on his past time and his personal ways of relaxation. He is all about himself and what suits him. He may not often step on his wife’s toes, but she better leave him alone in the various comfort zones he has carved out for himself. His ideal wife is she who is able to let him be within his comfort zone and asks no questions. If you are his wife, and ventures into perturbing his peace, then you really see an upset man.
As a wife, you can labour yourself to death around the house, provided you do not ask him to lift a finger. You must not send him on petty errands in the house as this will take too much of his pride and ego. If you want peace as his wife, just do your thing and leave him alone. So, this self-lover is busy preserving himself, while he does not give a thought to a wife expending herself and her energies to the last.
This kind of husband is worse for a wife who does not know how to ask for help, or who easily runs into her shell when her request for assistance is treated like a serious “contempt of court”. Wifey goes out of her way to do things for her self-lover husband with the desire to give him her 100% in the relationship. However, with time, she sees that her 100% is not inspiring him to give himself 100% to her. Rather, he measures and calculates his support and assistance. He spends time with her only from the left over of his own preferred time with others. Even little support needed by his wife is not given in public for fear of what others would say. She looks at him, works, struggles and dies in silence.
It is then left to wifey to continue putting her 100% into the relationship or not. Other options include reducing the percentage. With time though, maybe this self-preserver will also begin to see what needs to be done and also learn to realize when you get tired. He may become more sensitive, or you could choose to continue laying down your life each day for this man who may never increase his percentage in the relationship.
Whatever you do wifey, just ensure that you serve him only with a heart of love and not out of compulsion. Nonetheless, have some assurance that he may likely begin giving a 100% dues to your selfless love and patience.
- On-Your-Own (OYO)
Many husbands practice OYO within their marriages. This husband and wife share one roof but their hearts are, in reality, outside that house. Their bedroom is for room and board only; a case of simply finding a place to lay one’s head. The husband is living his own life as the wife is doing the same. There is hardly any reasonable communication between the couple; just enough to keep the roof above both heads.
The husband is by status married, but remains a free-radical. He has his freedom and ensures that he enjoys and maximizes it. To ladies out there, he is a bachelor, having the time of his life. He feels no obligation to wear a wedding ring. He glories in his own emptiness. This couple may even be living apart in different cities or countries.
- Poor and Clueless
This husband does no provide, neither does he know what is happening with his family. He is clueless on how the home is being run. However, he tries to exact control when he happens to be around. Wifey struggles to get money, cooks and feeds both husband and children. He just sits and controls the woman. That is his God-given role. It is basically below his dignity to give her a helping hand around the house (by the way, many have this problem). The home front is her personal project, so let her sort it out, however she does that, or whatever it takes – it is not his problem. Mind you, even with this, he still wants to control her income. He brings nothing home but wants to forcefully decide what will be bought and what will not.
This husband does not give her money for feeding, but comes home drunk. The day he is not drunk, even a little ant that passes by, provokes his angry emotion. He asserts himself as though everyone is undermining him. What a struggle!
Dude, this woman is laboring for the home. She goes out to make some income, comes home tired and still takes care of the home and family. The least you can do is keep a large chunk of your ego in your pocket and see how best to provide her with moral support, guidance, a listening ear and advice, for the good of the family. Even the children will respect you for that. They very likely get a sense of what’s up.
On the part of the woman this goes either way; she bears with him, is patient, humble and hopes that tomorrow things will get better. Or she goes all out and become insulting and disrespectful towards her husband. Going the later way only makes the home unhappy and creates more tension in the family. Even if things may look bad now, there is always hope for a brighter future. So, prayer, humility and patience pays.
The nice-guy endeavours to be the ideal husband to his wife. One outstanding thing about this husband is that right from the birth of the children, he gives his wife maximum support. Whatever he can do for his tiny baby isn’t off limits. He tries to foresee the needs of his woman and endeavours to provide. He knows his wife’s weak points and faults but finds ways of living serenely with them. He leaves work and come straight home quite often (something many wives miss).
He has the capability of spending ample time with his children. He helps them do their homework and does not leave it to their mother alone. When the wife is busy, he can comfortably spend time alone with the kids. He is even able to go out for lunch just with the kids, without complaining about it. He supports his wife financially and ensures that he buys her gifts, at least during anniversaries.
This husband is humble and does not suffer from peer pressure from friends outside the home. He is not afraid to display his affection for his wife in public; he opens the car door for her, assists her with the baby, give her a hand with her handbag or some load as the need arises. He holds her hands while walking. He is polite when making demands of his wife and expects his wife to bear with his weaknesses and faults. Even he has got some too.
He ensures that he spends time with his wife; moments when they gist, laugh, gossip and share fond ideas, insights, and memories together. They get to plan projects together. He also makes sure that he takes her out for visits to friends and relatives. Most of all, both have their outing dates, which help to strengthen their love and communication.
Their disagreements are indoors, but put up a common face when with others. Generally, they have their way of finding a common ground on various issues. This husband has in the first instance, ensured that he married a woman who has common interests with him. This is one thing that continuously stimulates, amplifies and smoothens their union.
To his in-laws, he is like a direct son. He flows in with his wife’s family without pomp or airs, but knows when to keep to his place too. The wife of this husband is definitely happy and peaceful in her marriage, provided she is also behaving well and keeping to her side of the bargain. Her good attitude and openness to him helps him to be and remain the nice-guy that he has decided to be.
“A man’s success has a lot to do with the kind of woman
he chooses to have in his life” – Anonymous
In conclusion, the union of a man and a woman (as we know it) comes with its ups and downs. This piece has looked at some of the shades of dispositions of men as they go into their marriages. Understandably, this is influenced by very diverse factors beginning from childhood, upbringing, family setup, exposure or lack of it, experiences, education and so on. These are factors that affect both women and men alike and affect how their marriages turn out to be.
Another point worthy of note is that marriages go through phases. It is very likely that your marriage would pass through the various shades described above. Hence, it is important to be patient and hopeful when things do not look rosy at the moment. Have faith and hope that it will get better, provided you are playing your part as should be. On the other hand, when it all looks good, hold on and keep working at it, as even good things can get bad. However, the good seeds planted and good memories enjoyed always helps one in times of certain challenges. So, whatever the case, it is all for the good, and we are in for the very long hull; hopefully a peaceful and serene journey together in this short existence.
It has been said that, “When a woman has a good husband it is easily seen on her face” – Mamalette NG. Men may take a leaf and see how best they could be more supportive of their families, and wives in particular. Though, we know that situations in marriages could be as complex as one imagines, hence a blanket judgement cannot be placed on all marriages that seem to wear a certain colour. What we see from outside may not really be what it is inside. It could be better or worse than you think.
- Linda Ellah
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