The trend of marginalizing and demeaning men has become disturbingly popular in many cultures. Father's Day is the perfect time to double check how the special man in your life is being treated. Start the practice of showing him all year round how much he is loved and valued.
Let an annoying habit slide
. Do his clothes always seem to miss the hamper by at least a foot? Does he leave his dishes next to, instead of in, the sink? Whatever the annoyance, try to focus instead on all the things he does right.
Remind yourself that because he tries so hard in other areas you are going to give him a free pass, for whatever particular annoyance, for life. Then, after you have given up trying to get him to change, work on modifying your attitude. Every time you clean up those clothes or dishes remind yourself that you are performing small acts of service for someone you love. Changing your outlook about his irritating habit will help you realize just how minor of an inconvenience it really was (Matthew 7:3-5).
. Is it entertaining to regale your group of girlfriends with his latest mistake? When he speaks, do you find yourself rolling your eyes behind his back? Make sure you do not cross the line between light-hearted teasing and harmful criticism.
Whether admonished by Jesus Christ or Confucius, the Golden Rule of treating others as you wish to be treated should be foremost in our minds when it comes to how we treat those dear to us. If he told similar stories about you or made the same faces behind your back, would you be hurt? If the answer is even close to the affirmative, do not do it.
Remind yourself why you originally chose this guy (why you thought he was special) and then give him the respect he deserves. If you are going to share stories about him with your friends, make sure they are good ones that exemplify why you chose to spend your life with this man.
. More muscles do not equal fewer feelings. Just because your man can physically take your playful punches without flinching does not mean he is as tough on the inside. He has feelings too and often those feelings are most vulnerable where you are concerned. Even though he is an adult he still needs and craves your appreciation and affirmation. Remember to show your love through words and actions.
Let him know it is okay for him to feel, and maybe even show, emotions. Many men feel that such displays are equated with weakness. Help him understand those are not your opinions. Take a turn being the shoulder to cry on and watch as your relationship grows and deepens.
. Do you feel special when your guy opens the door for you? When he carries the heavier shopping bags do you feel protected? When he declares how beautiful you are do not brush his comment aside. Sincerely accept it and be grateful for how he sees you.
If his attempts at fixing your 3-year-old's hair were dismal failures, let him know how thoughtful it was for him to try. If his method of making dinner consists of frozen pizza and a bag of chips (instead of a balanced meal), thank him for taking over that night's meal. Let him know how much you appreciate his small gestures of love and respect. Tell him of your gratitude for the long hours he puts in at work, home, school or the community.
Don't reverse discriminate
. Many men feel reverence and respect towards women. Yet the history of bigotry towards females and the resulting chip on many women's shoulders have put men in an awkward situation.
Women's suffrage was not about women being perceived as greater than men. It was about obtaining equal rights as men. Let your man know you see him as your equal, not as a repressor or a figurehead who needs to be overruled. Tell him how much he completes you and how important he is in your life. As you show him the respect he deserves, you will be more aware of the love and respect he has already been showering you with.
Your man may have some annoying habits, but his intentions are sincere. He deserves to be spoken of highly and needs your gentleness. As you show your gratitude for his efforts, make sure he knows you see him as your equal. Let this Father's Day mark a change in your relationship as you show your man how valuable he truly is.