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Taking Responsibility

By PAULA WELLNITZ


I have been reading one of the pop psychology books prevalent today. This one would explain a lot of a woman's problems on the way she is trained to be, and continues to want to be, dependent. She may expect that her husband will be the decision maker, the disciplinarian of the family. She may expect that he will fulfill her emotionally, keep her secure financially.

All the while I am reading, my mind is saying, "Yes, but...". The "but" is for the many men I find who have grown up being dependent and who still do not want to take responsibility after they are married. There are a variety of ways this is lived out.

As I have observed it, many parents have trained both their girls and their boys to be dependent. The male side, not given in the aforementioned book's analysis, is that, the married man often does not contribute of his person to his newly forming family. He may expect his wife to take all responsibility for his needs, home and family. He may work at a good job but want his wife to take care of family finances. Then he may insist that he have what he wants, to buy�even if they will not have the money to pay for family needs.

Wanting to be seen as head of the family, the man who rejects responsibility may refuse in any way to do anything for or with the children. He will see himself as the supreme lawgiver and decision maker and depend on his wife to carry it out. Rules and decisions may be very capricious. Or, he may play with the children and give in to whatever they want in order to assure himself of their affection.

Both men and women then, need to look at themselves and see how they can act interdependently and take responsibility. They need to see how they can share this in a marriage and family so that neither is over-expecting care from the other. Rather each gives to and receives from the other.





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