Acknowledge Your Spouse!!

If you were like the other millions of people in the country, you watched Kobe Bryant’s last basketball game. At the end of the game, when he was given the floor to address his fans, he thanked his wife for all the sacrifices she has made in holding down the fort at home, so that he could flourish in his professional career. In my opinion, it was the most memorable thing he said that evening. Many female clients enviously share there sadness when they read other husbands post endearing comments that acknowledge all that their wives do for the family. My female friends gawk with mush whenever they hear a husband praise their wife in a public forum. I believe that women’s intense reaction to this type of praise is because the vocation of being a wife and mother has become marginalized to a reality show of  “Real Housewives.” So,  it pleases me to see and hear more men acknowledge the work women actually do.

As always, I would like to make clear, this is not a woman versus man post. I will be the first to recognize and acknowledge what many men do to provide and support their families. If anything, living in Orange County, I have found myself praise more men for what they do for their families as they drive the term of success to an extreme level. This post is for the women who take their vocation seriously. Men are inherently hunters. They go out, they work, and they are called by most of society to provide. That being said, I have seen numerous times, men who are traveling more than their fathers and grandfathers before them, simply to provide more. I have seen men work harder and more hours without boundaries of leaving work at work. I have seen men juggle more than one job. All praise to them for hunting and making the sacrifices. However, we often times see that the work of the woman at home has been minimized simply because they are “at home.” This is false in every facet. I am a professional woman. I am also an “at home” and single mom when my husband is away at work. And, I can honestly say that I am more exhausted being with my children for the entire weekend than I am working a full week. I was taught by my mother and grandmother, that a wife keeps her home as an honorable and respectable sanctuary for which your husband provides so that they can come home to peace after a long day’s work. Thus, I make sure that when my husband comes home late, my home is spotless and the kids are taken care of. He does not have to worry about dishes, lunches for the next day, clothes, homework, school and scheduling issues, and the home is vacuumed, cleaned, and countertops are cleared so that his home is a place in which he can hopefully relax. This requires A LOT of efficiency, organization, focus, energy, patience, and juggling of different personalities and needs (in my case, FOUR!) Now, I am not asking for praise because I love being the “woman of the house” and despite being a feminist, I am a traditional wife and mother who takes my role in their lives with more weight than I would like. HOWEVER, as I often see in couples counseling, much of the complaints from both husband and wife, have been the lack of appreciation. Many wives feel that their husbands don’t recognize what they do in order to keep the household stable while their husbands are at work. So, my solution, and what I advise my clients to do is to express gratitude everyday for something your spouse does, no matter how big or small. When we focus on the positive attributes of our spouse and when we acknowledge what our spouse does on a daily basis, we are more appreciative of not only our roles in our household, but also our relationships.

Women, at least the ones I surround myself with or read about, are not reluctant to praise their husbands. However, men, for whatever reason, are not always cognizant of what is done when they are away. They minimize scheduling; chauffeuring; planning; re-educating ourselves on word math problems; talking about constant worries, needs, and stressors that the kids are disclosing to us; being mindful that our everyday choices with our children mold and develop their character; and for some of us working women, that we too, contribute to the household financially. I often times see women want to “give up” and it’s not because of the workload. It is because of  the lack of acknowledgement for what women do that has not been weighed as importantly as that of a man’s role in the household.

So, for all of you who need a daily reminder, I would suggest that you follow fiercemarriage.com . They remind us daily of how to be a better spouse to one another. Their Instagram and blog has been a wonderful place to reflect upon our vocation as a husband or wife and I am an avid fan.

Charise

Charise Casiano

About Charise Casiano

Charise obtained her BA degree at California State University, Stanislaus and immediately pursued her MS degree at Mount Saint Mary’s College. During her college years, Charise left for one year to do missionary work. She traveled the United States troubleshooting with teenagers.