Some friends of ours are really struggling financially. We are. A lot of people are.
Here’s a man’s take on this situation.
“I am the provider for this home. We are broke. Therefore I am not doing a good job. Therefore I suck. Therefore I am a loser so kill me baby. Therefore…
In conversation with our friends, the wife relayed to us that she told her husband, “I can’t stand being broke AND being treated like crap. I can live broke if at least you love me and treat me well.”
Men, I am a man who has experienced the weight of brokenness. I have also handled this financial deprivation in an unhealthy way. I have felt inadequate as a provider and allowed those feelings to brew into anger. That anger leaked into my home. My wife was often the recipient of my anger. Her load was intense. No money + an angry husband = tough times for any lady.
Things are changing now though. A few things that have helped me handle the financial tough times with a bit more grace:
- I pray with Sherri almost every night. It’s pretty hard to assume the role of spiritual leader at night when you’ve acted like a jerk all day. During our prayer times, I often confess and ask for perspective and strength to deal with the pressure of the day. It has helped.
- I try to laugh every day. Sometimes it is a bit forced, but even forced laughter is better than no laughter. AND when you start laughing it gets easier. Force it if you have to, but laugh every day!
- I have made a decision to not spend a lot of time worrying about what I can’t change. It won’t help and it will hurt if I do worry so I’ve decided not to worry.
- I stay on top of our finances like a fly stays on a rotten piece of chicken. I review our finances a couple times per week and know what is coming and going.
- I have had to make decisions about what bills MUST be payed and what bills can wait. I disdain not paying every bill on time, but when times are tough you must make choices. Make choices and live with the consequences.
- For every cut we’ve made in our budget, we’ve sought to replace it with something meaningful, fun, and free.
Men, know this, you ARE the provider for your family, but you provide MORE than money. You also provide love, laughter and leadership. Don’t let your family suffer the pain of financial loss AND the loss of husband/daddy.
You may not be able to change your financial situation right now but you CAN change your attitude and the atmosphere in your home!
Ladies, I’d love to hear your feedback on this. Tell us men how you feel and what you need from us when things are tough financially.
Men, let’s hear how you’ve succesfully navigated financial duress.