Like any husband, I have my ups and downs. For the most part, I think I am a pretty decent husband, but more recently, I have really been focusing on what a good husband really is versus what I think a good husband is. Perhaps there are some of you out there who are like me. I ensure that all the "manly" chores are taken care of, I am an active father and I work hard to provide for my family; but is this enough? Sometimes I get so sidetracked on what it is to be a good husband, that I lose sight of just being a good husband. I ensure that my wife knows just how much I do, when in fact I could just quietly get on with it. "Look what a great man I am, so domesticated in all that is both manly and womanly" I sometimes "hear" myself thinking...but there is one simple problem here; the age-old notion of actions speak louder than words. I guess in my case I think that actions and words together speak EVEN louder! But surely this will only annoy the wife.
So what does this have to do with fatherhood? It is simple really, by displaying respect and dignity towards my wife (or a child's mother), as a husband/partner/ex, I am indirectly communicating to my child the importance of love and respect. Even though it is impossible to be perfect all of the time, I guess husbands like myself need to bear in mind that deeds are more important than words (and not both together). By indirectly praising myself and telling my daughter's mother all that I do, I am pointing out to my little girl that this is not what daddy's do and that I am going beyond the call of duty...which, in fact, is not the case - I am doing what is right and what should be done, both for my wife and my child. If I were to have a son it would be vital in the sense that it would indirectly display a healthy way on how to treat women, especially in instances where the husband/partner/ex disagrees or is upset with the child's mother. An imperative life-lesson. And for my daughter? Well, it is even more important. My actions will set a benchmark for how she should be treated one day when she finds her future husband/partner. It will hopefully equip her with the knowledge that she should be treated in a way that is fair and equal, in a way which exemplifies love and respect. I sometimes get this wrong, but I am wising up to my shortfalls. I need to set an example of how it is done, to set a standard that should never be ignored when it is my little girl's turn to experience love and relationships. Sometimes far more difficult than it seems, but well-worth persisting with.