What Women Need Instead of a Husband...

Today according the US Census over 45.2% of all people in the United States are Single. The highest in the history of the nation and more and more people are choosing the single life. For those that do venture down the path of “I do” over 50% of those marriages are ending amicably or horribly in divorce, with almost 70% of all those divorces being filed by WOMEN. How can this be is what the engineer in me immediately asked. Then it dawned on me. For centuries marriage was touted to women as an insurance policy against homelessness, childlessness and starvation. A woman’s survival strategy was to find a MAN who would marry her and be able to protect her from harm, put a roof over her head, put food on the table and give her his last name so her children wouldn’t be bastards and shunned by society. Seemed like a good setup and it worked for centuries. In exchange for a man being a husband, the woman was to perform the duties of being a wife. She would cook, clean, care for the children, provide all of the emotional support for the family, obey him (marriage vows used to say this) and be expected to put the needs of the family ahead of her own. So the Housewife relationships model (HW Model) was born as I dubbed it. Husband’s had very clear duties and everything that didn’t involve fixing broken things, cars, and outside was the woman’s role.

This is NOT HELP

Fast forward to the 21st Century where both men and women are working outside of the home. Children have schedules that rival any adult and the laundry and feedings still need to happen. Many women still feel it’s her responsibility to handle all of the duties performed by traditional housewives on top of a 50-80hr work week, and are literally crumbling under the invisible workload. Many women start in with this exhausting narrative cause she is trying to live up to the definition of a “good wife” and her husband is often oblivious to the fact that the woman he loves dearly is literally ready to collapse due to exhaustion and the overwhelm of never feeling like she can keep up. Yet if he is paying the bills, fixing broke stuff and ensure the doors are locked he feels pretty good about his job as a husband. Yet it’s the limitation and expectations of husband and wife for that matter that could use updating. So instead of a husband in title only what she sincerely needs and desires is a partner. Husbands often see themselves as “helping” when they choose to wash dishes or perform duties that according to the housewife model are the wife’s duties. A partner understands that washing dishes that you ate off of, or vacuuming the carpet at your house isn’t help, it’s a part of maintaining a home. Husbands often see taking care of their children as babysitting. Partners understand that taking care of children that carry half of your DNA is another word for parenting. Husbands unbeknownst to them are often considered by their wives as burdens instead of reliefs. Wives ofter express having a husband is like having another child, this is not a compliment. Switching from the mindset of ‘helping” to “partnering” is the hallmark of the “Power Couple Model”. Husbands are trained “Happy Wife Happy Life” as if his happiness is irrelevant and he doesn’t actually know how to make her happy. Partners understand they are responsible for their own happiness and together they can create a Happy Home and a Happy Marriage. Vacuuming is a turn on to many women because there is something sexy about being supported instead of taken for granted. Also to be fair women also are invited to relax those ‘Leave it To Beaver’ home aesthetics expectations. Your home could be immaculate at all times if you hire help, otherwise don’t pressure yourself to keep up a perfect home and the expense of the peace in the house. Partnering could be the difference between a Happy Home or a home that is headed for a premature divorce. What good is being husband and wife in title only to be trapped in a relationship where one person feels like the help, is ready to escape or staying cause husbands know it’s cheaper to keep her?

Everybody’s definition of partnering may look differently so communication still rules- just ask!! What’s one thing that would make a husband a better partner? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!!!


Black Women Are Selfish - This is US

A Woman’s Job

Reading the comment section of the latest episode of “This is Us” two things became very apparent. One, many people are in unhealthy relationships and two there are two very distinct schools of thoughts when it comes to relationships. At first glance it seemed to follow the color line, according to my girl Ashley, from Sex with Ashley. Though the comment section is indeed filled with plenty of White Women who can’t even fathom the thought, that Beth, would have the nerve to do anything other than stop, drop and roll all of her dreams into a ball and throw them in the closet with her voice and opinions. Upon further investigation I realized this isn’t a Black Woman/White Woman issue. It’s a 20th vs 21st Century relationship dilemma that I call the Housewife Relationship Model (HWR Model) versus the Powerhouse Relationship Model (PHR Model) .

Relationship Models

For a little background on the marriage dynamics in ‘This is Us'. Like many great couples Randall has dreams, goals and aspirations that he believes are his right to fulfill. He goes after his pursuits unapologetically with the full assumption that his lovely wife, Beth, should be supportive. Nevermind, the fact that he left his job, said he would drop out of his race for councilman, he didn’t and surprise, he won. Previously, he wanted to adopt a child and his wife again went along and even helped to care for his Dad. Beth, who by all accounts is a great MOM, lost her job and has decided to rekindle her passions of teaching dance, at nights. Well cue the conflict, add in 3 children with full-time schedules, adult passions that don’t pay the same as previous pursuits and the relationship sparks begin to fly. So Randall being the great guy that he is, after seeing the problem, wants to fix it, so he offers the standard “Housewife Relationship Model” solution - his wife should delay her dance dreams so that she can be there for the family. #ProblemSolved. For every couple who has adopted the 20th century “HWR Model” this is a no-brainer. As one of the women in the FB comments said, Beth is a WIFE and MOTHER FIRST. So the fact that she REFUSED to give up her dance dreams is proof that she is SELFISH and frankly Randall deserves a better wife. #Ouch

Yet, Beth didn’t agree and she wanted to have her dreams and goals valued as well. So she did what anyone who is as committed to her family would, she refused to deny herself the joy of doing something she loves. She dances, and they together have to figure out how to take care of all of the other really important things in the house. In the 21st Century the Powerhouse Relationship Model, will continue to be a new standard. There are plenty of growing pains ahead of us which is why it seems like we can’t get enough of #relationshipgoals and examples or blogs like this one. We are truly charting new relationship territory and it’s a very good thing for our sanity and the soul of our nation. I say it often, stable relations result in stable nations. Gone are the days where women are expected to be seen and not heard, to not have any goals of her own except to raise her children and cater to her man, expecting to be last and to have her self-care sacrificed. Because contrary to popular belief a woman is not a Wife and Mother 1st, she is a WOMAN first. Wife and Mother are very important roles that she has taken on but it’s not all she is. The “Powerhouse Relationship Model” only works if it’s built on a foundation of EQUALITY. Not equality as in women and men are the same. Equality that sees a woman’s desires, dream and pursuits etc. as EQUALLY valuable and as important as the man’s. Which by the way, Randall’s voicemail to Beth, when he thought she wasn’t coming, is a perfect illustration of a lack of value that is common in the HWR Model.

Beyond Selfish

Black Women or any woman for that matter who values her professional pursuits, desires to have her husband cheer her on and champion her dreams with the same excitement she does for him IS NOT SELFISH. Understand whether you are #TeamRandall or #TeamBeth, what is really being debated is who is more important, valuable and deserving in relationships. In the Housewife Relationship Model this was not a discussion. It was understood that the Woman’s role as a Homemaker was inside of the house and she was the Chief Dream Supporter for the entire family. Her dreams and ambitions were rarely if ever explored because the understanding was clear, the man would work outside of the home, make money, provide for the family’s PHYSICAL well-being and in return she would provide a home that was peaceful (aka quiet and not bothersome to him), nourish his body, take care of HIS children, bear the emotional responsibility and provide sex upon his demand. Seeing this played out with varying levels of satisfaction , and often with visible, if not spoken exhaustion. A many women realize there is more to life than simply being someone’s wife. Though marriage is still desirable, beautiful and honorable, being placed second to last if not completely last is no longer the aspiration of Women and frankly being only valued for the money that he can provide, with no help is also not the desire of men. In the 21st Century relationships are places you go to give and grow. It’s not a matter of right or wrong and there is nothing selfish about it.

What do you think? How do you decide who gets to go for their dreams?