Between work and relationship
We need to work and make money because all human activities including what we do in our relationships require money. The problem is that when we get into a relationship, we are unable to draw a balance between work and our relationships.
Sadly, in most cases it is our relationships which suffer and in turn impact negatively on our work and everything around us.
A man wants to spend as much time at work to find fulfillment as he achieves something for himself and family. A woman wants her husband at home to connect emotionally and to be fulfilled.
When a man comes home after a busy day, he has achieved something and so feels fulfilled as he provides for his family. He therefore wants to relax to watch TV or read the newspaper.
His wife, however, wants him. She wants to talk and share her feelings and thoughts at work as well as events of interest. She simply wants to share in her husband's life and not just feel like a mere cook, cleaner or childcare expert.
Unfortunately, most Ghanaian husbands hardly have time for their wives and children. Husbands go home late and doze off. They have little to offer their wives, children and home.
Many Ghanaian wives are lonely, miserable, frustrated, disappointed and sometimes depressed. They live in constant fear of what could be happening to their husbands who stay away from home. They may have everything - cars, big homes, money, and jewellery except what they need most for their emotional fulfillment - their husbands. Some are tempted into infidelity.
Many Ghanaian husbands leave home early and get home very late. Parenting and home care are left entirely to their wives. Many husbands are total strangers to their children. They hardly know them. As teachers in Motown, we are sometimes amazed to know how little fathers know their children.
You complain about a student. His father comes to protest vehemently only to realise later that he was wrong. Fathers neglect their responsibilities leaving their children to do what please them. After acquiring all they want, they realise with regret that their properties can't compensate for irreparable damage done to their children.
Advice to men
Men have to find quality time for their partners. It may mean turning down opportunities, requests and demands. We must get our priorities right. No work, position, money, houses and cars can substitute for a fulfilling relationship.
Show your commitment by putting your relationship first. Akans say if you stop what you do, you have time for other things.
Husbands must also appreciate that parenting is a joint effort of husband and wife because both have unique abilities to train.
A father should be a role model and a leader especially during the formative years of the children. Women find romantic and rewarding little things done in the house by their husbands. Husbands must help their wives at home.
Husbands must also be transparent about their progress of work. We must listen to our wives and utilise their intuitive powers. Take your wife out as often as possible. She must be your closest friend and advisor. Make her feel part of your work and honoured by your progress.
Husbands must also avoid setting goals that are unreachable and difficult to fulfill. This could give us stress and high blood pressure which could predispose us to many diseases including impotency. What we chase after may not last the test of time. It could be vanity and striving after the wind. It is only when we are happy as a family that we can claim true happiness.
Advice to women
Your husband is made for work. Understand how important work is to him. His success at work makes him a better husband and father. Be supportive of your husband's work.
Men are motivated by appreciation, support and encouragement from their partners. They love to have their family interested in what they do. Ask questions, listen to him. Be the woman behind the great man. If a wife shows honest interest in her husband's work, her marriage is strengthened.
Make your home a healing centre for your partner. When he comes back home tired he needs time to unload. Give him time and avoid batting him right away with complaints. You must make yourself and home attractive all the time. Then your husband will come home to you and not avoid you by drinking out with friends.
Do pray for your husband and his work each day. Business has become competitive and sometimes frustrating. Your husband has to work harder and stand strong and true to make it. A husbands' success at work improves his relationship.
Men and women have different needs which put work and relationship apart. Managing the space between them is key. With proper attitude, work and happiness, our relationships can be mutually fulfilling.
Credit: John Boakye
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