I got this eloquent email recently, and wanted to share it with all of you, as it addresses the consequences of some behaviors that often come up from callers to my radio show:
“Two months ago, I left my wife and children and moved into a condo about a mile from our home. This morning, I was moved to write the following, just to help me vent my frustration over the treatment from my wife that led to this painful and damaging decision, called “For Years:”
For years, you behaved as if it didn’t matter whether I came or went, so I went.
For years, you were unsatisfied with the income I brought in, even though it was way more than enough to allow you to stay home with the children. Now you have less, and you get to go to work.
For years, you behaved as if my touch meant nothing to you. Now, it’s gone.
For years, you never complimented me on the household repairs I made, keeping up the lawn and garden, cleaning and organizing the garage and the hundreds of things I did to keep our home balanced and running. Now, you can do them.
For years, you complained I didn’t do enough housework. Now it’s all yours.
For years, you chose not to attend community and social events that were important to me. Now they’re not an option.
For years, you expected me to read your mind when you were hurt or upset. Never could, never will.
For years, you punished me with your silence. Now you have plenty.
For years, you would not share information about our kids’ schedules, doctor’s appointments and so on. Now some attorneys will help you polish your communication skills.
For years, I chose to love you, protect you, provide for you, confide in you, and have fun with you. Now, I don’t.
For years, you behaved as a long-suffering martyr. Now you can be one.
For years, I chose to raise your son as my own. Now, he’s hurting.
For years, you treated me as the lesser parent. Now I am.
For years, our precious young daughter has watched this debacle. What do you think she’s learned?
P.S. I bought and read “The Proper Care and Feeding of Marriage” months ago, and asked my wife to read it with me. She laughed.”
Still My Kids’ Dad
in Southern California