Husband's handbookSunday, January 17, 2021
Let husbands know,
Their wives have sense like them,
They see and smell, and have their palates,
Both for sweet and sour,
As husbands have.
A few weeks ago I wrote about 'Wife school', a school for wives where women were groomed to become perfect wives. Well, it seemed to have opened up a can of worms, as many women asked about a school for husbands too.
It's a fair question, for in the same way that young women were groomed to become perfect wives for their men, it's only fitting that young men should also be transformed from rough-hewn wayward brutes to become suitable husbands for women.
Truth be told, I do think that men need more training and polishing to become good husbands than women need to become good wives. Somehow the females, perhaps by birth or conditioning, are gifted with a nurturing and caring spirit, excellent attributes for wifery.
Males, on the other hand, by nature are cavalier, rambunctious, free-spirited, carefree and need some polishing up if they are to become good husbands. Remember from centuries ago what they said little girls were made of: Sugar and spice and everything nice, as opposed to snakes and snails and puppy dog tails, for boys.
Maybe there should be a husband handbook where men can read, peruse, scan, flip through, and use as reference when they wish to become good and proper husbands. That's the path I'll be heading down today, right after we see what these readers had to say about 'Paying for sex'.
When the first couple was commanded to be fruitful, multiply and replenish the Earth, it would seem that Adam was the beneficiary of that deal, and I wonder what poor Eve received in return for this unearthly mission. She may have gotten fed up with Adam's constant free sex and rebelled, helping herself to a reward, the forbidden fruit, setting a precedent for women since the beginning of time…no more free sex.
You have hit the nail squarely on the head, my brother. In the same way that there is no free lunch, as someone, somewhere has to pay for it, there is also no free sex. Whenever a woman 'gives up sex' she expects something in return. At least with a prostitute you know exactly what you're paying for and what you're getting. But with those others who purportedly give it up for free, you end up paying and paying and paying. It's like buying an item on hire purchase that eventually costs you three times the price, or a never-ending loan on which the interest keeps on rising, even as her interest fades.
So, the jury is no longer out, men do need to be schooled in the ways of being a proper husband or they will fail miserably at the task at hand. Lord knows, there are some terrible husbands out there, and in many instances it's a result of poor upbringing and terrible parenting. Children do live what they see.
So many boys are mollycoddled and spoilt by their mothers and grow up thinking that women are there to be at their beck and call. Also, there are young boys who grow up seeing their fathers abuse their mothers so, naturally, they think that it's the norm and treat women the same way. Pity the poor wife who gets such a man.
Clearly, those men make terrible husbands and the terrified wife wouldn't even know it until it's too late. Well, my former high school English teacher, Mrs Jasmine Reid, sent me a very interesting research paper that focused on how husbands should treat their wives.
It's sort of like a husband's handbook that instructs men on how wives should be treated and exhorts them to improve. It starts with: 'Don't shout at your wife when you are talking, as it really hurts her.' Now, there are men who constantly not only shout at their wives whenever they speak, but intersperse the sentences with some choice colourful cuss words that do nothing but make the wife cower in fear or build up a resentment towards him.
“Hey Sandra, what de hell you do to mi good shirt? Why de whatsit whatsit yu don't learn how to iron properly?”
'Do not speak evil of her to anyone; your wife will become who you call her.' I know men who constantly speak ill of their wives to their friends, always putting her down. I will always remember this guy who, having just married his wife, constantly spoke evil of her to other women. I found it to be so distasteful. As for the part about her becoming what you call her, be careful, call her a cheat, lazy, slut and watch what she becomes.
'Do not share your love or affection with another woman. It is called adultery.' Now, this is a big one, and one which some husbands find very difficult to conform to. It says love and affection, but not sex? Well, they do say that cheating doesn't always have to be physical, as there is also emotional cheating.
Say you have your wife, but also a female friend on the side who you show love and affection, confide in her all the time and share more of your life with her than you do with your wife, but no sex. Is that cheating?
'Do not compare your wife to another woman.' So true, as the grass may always seem greener on the other side of the fence, when in truth when you hop over there you discover that it's full of 'junjo' and weeds. No woman likes to be compared to another…unless you're telling her that she's the best in the world.
'Do not make negative comments about her body. In many instances she risked her life and beauty to bear your children.' And yet there are men who body shame their women on a daily basis.
“Look how yu get big and fat and wagga wagga.”
The irony is, he fails to see his huge paunch bulging before him.
In the same vein, 'Do not let her looks or body determine her worth. Cherish and appreciate her until old age.' There are men who, as soon as their wives start to show signs of ageing, they leave them for a younger woman. Be careful, for those younger models may not care for you as you get older.
Just recently,I learnt of this 56-year-old man who left his wife for a 22-year-old woman. Do the math. Interestingly, her mother has no issues with the relationship, so who are we to say anything?
'Never place your siblings before her; she is your wife, she is one with you, she must come before your family.' It's so sad when men put their sisters, brothers and even friends before their wives. So many wives suffer through this indiscretion.
“Every night he has to go to his sister or yak on the phone for hours with her, then visit his mother every single night before he comes home late.”
'Never use money to manipulate or control her. All your money belongs to her. She is a joint heir with you.' Now, there are men who do not believe in this at all, especially with nowadays women. They have experienced women who are licky licky, grabby grabby, wanty wanty, gimmie gimmie and gold digging. This is true in many cases, but if you get a good wife you have to weigh your options and assess her character.
You can't be mean and 'croomooging' (curmudgeon) to your wife if she's a good woman. What's yours is hers, and you shouldn't dangle money before her or over her head to control her. Pity the wife who has no income and is saddled with such a husband. Fortunately, in this modern world women earn their own and do not depend on men as they used to back in olden times.
'Do not expose her weakness. You will be exposing yourself too. Be a shield around her.' Men often put down and embarrass their wives because perhaps she's not as highly educated or smart as he is. Well, he shouldn't have married her in the first place then. Sometimes though, he pursued higher education while she raised the children, so now he thinks that he's better than her, too bright for her and never ceases to remind her.
“You have no sense, can't you go and read a book by Tolstoy, Shakespeare, Walcott or something?!”
These are but a few of the sage bits ofadvice that are found in the husband's handbook. And guess where they are to be found...the Bible. Yes, all that advice showing what it takes to be a good husband for wives came from the Bible, from Proverbs, Matthew, Genesis, Ephesians, James and other books, chapters and verses.
Surprising huh? But if men heeded that advice, they'd become better husbands. That's the true and original handbook for husbands.
Footnote: Corona is still here and will be for a while. Despite the vaccines that are available to some, the threat of the virus still exists. When we see what's happening in other countries, especially the USA, we must be thankful that we are still holding our own and doing relatively well. Nevertheless we must not become complacent, let our guard down. Sadly, there are still some people who don't take it seriously and continue to flout the guidelines. This comes from all quarters as I even heard a doctor spouting some questionable advice on the radio pertaining to dealing with the pandemic. Happily, some other doctors took him to task about his theories but I'm sure that his words were accepted by some people. I beg of you, take this plague seriously. It's not to be trifled with.
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