Wednesday, 20 March 2013


Yesterday I wrote about the kind of life I had lived. There wasn't enough room for all of it, not if I wanted to keep from writing that book. There are plenty of other things I have done in my life that have been exciting and interesting and challenging, for example having kids and raising a family.

It's interesting to note that while many of my male friends posted and emailed me with very positive comments about yesterday's post, my female friends have asked me "What about being a husband and a father?" I continually find it fascinating the way men and women look at life and the world differently. A woman's take is almost always different than a man's.

The thing is, I don't think if being a husband or father was something I did. I think of it as something I am. They are not part of the life I lived, they are part of the person I have become through that life. In an earlier post I wrote about "just being a Dad". You see, fathering a child is nothing. Any male with the right sperm count can impregnate any woman with a ready ovum. Children occur by accident, on purpose, with or without planning, even through rape. Making a baby is easy. Raising one is hard.

In that regard, I don't see myself as "doing" fatherhood. I see myself as being a Dad. That means far more to me than simply creating children. It means loving them, guiding them, caring for them, and then, when it is most difficult of all, letting them go either by helping them become adults or, in some situations, allowing adulthood to fall upon them. It means willingly giving up your life so they can have theirs.

The whole husband thing is a lot tougher right now. I fell in love, there is no doubt about that. Did she? I would like to think so. After all, working at a marriage for 32 years is not something you do out of compulsion I would hope. Being a good husband is more than falling in love. I know a great many men who fall in love and make terrible husbands. Being a good husband takes the same work, effort, care, love, compassion, understanding and willingness that is involved in being a good Dad.

I think I was a good husband. I loved and cared for my wife. I worked hard at being there, contributing, giving, understanding. I worked hard at making a life where she felt that she was safe and in control of things. Then, as time rolled on, it became impossible for me to do it anymore. As I became increasingly less relevant in my marriage, I became less of a husband. Then the day came when there was no place for me in what used to be my home, what used to be my marriage. I had no say in the relationship, no say in that house. I was irrelevant; I was a husband no more.

So what am I? I am still a Dad. I will always be a Dad. I will always love my children and will always be as much of a Dad as possible. I would like to be a husband again; I miss having a woman's point of view in my life.

These things, being a Dad and being a husband, are not things I did. They are who I am.

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