Everyone has their passions and convictions. My list is long but few equate with my thirst to honor Rick in faithfulness throughout our marriage, trusting he’ll do the same. True I sometimes get too hung up in fear over this matter, taking the latest media scandals such as the Elliot Spitzer saga too much to heart. At the end of the day though, real life Christian marriages (as well as those outside Christian circles obviously) are crumbling all around us and I for one do not want to hide in blissful ignorance of this fact. Honestly, it is frightening how many I have heard of lately. Therefore, in 50 years (and beyond:), I want to be able to say confidently that I have never in any way crossed the line with another man.
Anyways, the idea behind this post began with eavesdropping (is that a sin)? I was sitting with Micah at…surprise, surprise….Joyce Bakeshop today and at the table beside me was a late twenties, early thirties stay-at-home dad with his toddler son. Besides exchanging information about the ages of our two little boys since they were trying to communicate with one another, I did not seek further conversation with him as I would with a fellow mom.
I had somehow found a table for Micah and I but the place was crowded. A mom with a mammoth stroller walked in with her son and, surveying the place, walked up to this man’s table and asked to sit down across from him. He unhesitatingly obliged and they were soon deep in conversation. What began as mere introductions quickly morphed into deeper talk. NOTE: she could have sat across from me or other women with room at their tables.
Again, I was, I admit, quietly (and hopefully inconspicuously:), eavesdropping. She and this dad discussed matters such as their day to day lives as stay at home parents, how emotionally drained she often feels and their spouse’s occupations. She said her husband is an architect whom she mentioned works practically “24/7, seven days a week…” and his wife a high power lawyer. I guess she’s out making the big bucks and I doubt she’s home much either.
Two stay-at-home parents, obviously hungry for company, conversation and encouragement because neither of them often has time with their spouse, but making the dire mistake of finding it in the opposite sex. Even if they got up at the end and left without any agreement of seeing each other again or exchange of contact information, they still crossed a line. They were sharing more than is wise. They were making it clear they are both alone much of the time. They, like many married couples today, have likely afforded themselves far too much freedom as relationships with the opposite sex go and the lines have blurred as to wise behavior in marriage.
I realize we need as many relationships with fellow adults as we can muster and this takes more work as stay at home parents or may not come as easily. We need to actively seek that camaraderie as it is not often immediately at our finger tips. But as I have learned, there are plenty of women out there whom I can befriend…there is simply no need to take a chance that might just turn into the gravest decision of my life.
I honestly feel for the stay-at-home dad…his needs are unique and not properly tapped into in our society as of yet. We should pray that they would find the support they need. But instead of pretending as women that it is legitimate to be that friend to them, I believe that we must exercise as much caution as we would in the outside work place and keep any men other than our husbands at arms length. The success or failure of our marriages may depend on this decision!