Over the years, as my kids have grown and changed..their challenges have changed along with them. Funny enough, their friends' challenges have followed suit. In this time the 'Dear Mommy' moments have seeped into our lives causing me to reflect, ponder, and even attempt to answer some of the quirky, hard, and sometimes strange questions plaguing our youth. Today brought to my kitchen one of those questions.
"How do you handle a relationship with a hard-headed, stubborn man?" I turned to face my teen..onion tears and all..and laughingly asked why on earth she thought I would have an answer to that, after all her daddy is so docile and easy going. Laughter ensued...wet your pants and cry a bit laughter. Not only is my husband a strong-willed, determined man..he is stubborn.
Once the frivolity settled, I answered her friend's question with the advice given me years ago. 1. You can not change him..it isn't within your power or under your range of authority. The only person in any relationship you can change is you. 2. You have to face his flaws and quirks and determine if you can live with them; then determine how you will live with them. 3. Remember, this works both ways.
Relationships are tough..all relationships..and they require a give and take that many people in this world just don't put the effort into. My heart's conviction in my relationships is whether or not working through the difficulties makes us both better and if I have it in me to get through it. One truly humbling realization is..the other person most likely feels the same way. I have stubborn strengths and quirks my husband has to figure out how to live with (who knew, right?).
Dear ladies (and young men) let me be honest...it takes work..life long hard work to make any relationship last, but in that time there is growth and love and respect. Over the years, I realize it has made us both better and stronger and, well, funnier. And changing? Well, I can change me..my reactions, my approach, my attitude toward things..but I will never change him. Reality is, our weirdness may aggravate each other, but it also works for us.
Now, I pose the question to you...how would you have answered this young lady's question? I look forward to your perspective..let's share our hearts.