This week, my friend Jess called and said “Heather, I think you should write about valuing our husband’s perspective on parenting, and not glazing over it. A lot of times, they see things we can’t see when we are ‘all up in it’ with the kids all day.” This was definitely something I had already wanted to write about, just wasn’t sure when. As I was mulling it over though, I found I was having trouble identifying the heart of why this is a struggle. Why do wives struggle to listen and appreciate their husband’s ideas and suggestions in parenting? I suspected there was something here I still needed to learn.
But he isn’t here all day, he doesn’t see what goes on.
But that means things we are callous to, he actually sees in a fresh way.
But I am the mom, I know what’s best for the kids.
Ah! THIS IS IT. This is the problem. WHY do we think WE are the ones who know best?
What is REALLY going on in our hearts?
When J offers a suggestion on how I could handle something differently with the girls, sometimes I can feel anxious or upset. I mean, I do take it to heart (usually) and I try to implement what he suggested (it almost always is effective)… but why do I have this weird response to it?
I tend to think everything I struggle with comes back to pride. Pride tells me “I should know better.” Pride says, “if I was being a more attentive mom, he wouldn’t need to help me.”
But there was also this element of like, fear or worry, like I am a burden on him. So I asked my husband last night, “Is it frustrating for you, to work all day, and then have to come home and help me like that?”
His response: Um, no.
I don’t feel frustrated. I just saw something I thought could be done differently, so I told you.
That “assuming” thing. Let’s write a whole blog post about that one, huh?
So how can we be wholehearted?
Be grateful for his input, because it means he is a good dad, who cares about parenting his kids. Some kids (and wives) are not so fortunate. Instead of getting annoyed that he is telling you something to do, be grateful that he cares enough to say something at all.
Fathers, don’t stir up anger in your children, but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:4, HCSB
Place value in his perspective. His wisdom is God given, and he sees things as a husband and a father differently that we do and that’s a GOOD thing, it is how God designed it. It might not make sense right away. That’s okay. Go with it.
REALLY listen, put into action what he says. We can be guilty of agreeing, with a smile and a nod, but not actually following through. If he thinks the kids need to watch less TV, stop making excuses and seek the Lord on how to make this change.
But Samuel replied, “What is more pleasing to the LORD: your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to his voice? Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and submission is better than offering the fat of rams. 1 Samuel 15:22, NLT
Oh, and one last thought: when hubby gets the kids dressed, but not they way you would, or when he makes them a meal, but not the foods you want them to have… just go with it. Relish the moment of him dressing them, feeding them, playing with them, engaging them. Let dads be dads. They know best.