January 20, 2009

I Am Husband...And I Am President?

My wife and I just finished watching the inauguration together. Whether you were for or against him, it's hard not to feel moved by the historic nature of this election. Though the fires of racism have not been completely extinguished in our land, it is encouraging to see how far our nation has come in just sixty yeras or so. Many have touted this day as a victory for blacks. In a different sense, I feel confident in saying that this election may also be called a victory for whites.

But this blog is not about politics, and I have no desire for it to become one. What inspired this post today was watching Barack Obama sitting with his wife and daughters and wondering how hard it must be to be president and husband; to be president and father.

I really don't suppose it's any harder to be a president and a family man than it is for those husbands who work twelve to fourteen (or more) hour days, seven days a week. In fact, in some ways I think it might be much easier. Regardless of which job you hold, marriages are often threatened by the work place, and that's what I wanted to talk about today.

So I thought I'd just pose some questions and see if we can get some discussion going. In what ways do you think jobs can threaten marriages? How do you fight the battle of being a good employee and a good husband? Has your marriage ever struggled because of your career? What advice would you give to others about protecting their marriages while climbing up the corporate ladder?


  1. Hey,

    Looks like I'm the first to start this convo. I'm not a husband, or father, and wont' be for a long time. I dunno how I came across this blog, but I'm glad I did. I guess I can speak from the point of view of a son. My parents have had some tough times, and a large portion has had to do with the face that my dad works 18 hour days.

    But my dad's a fighter. His first responsibility is to his family, and that's why my parents are still married. That's why I will do anything for him, even lay down my life if necessary. He's proven to the world and has stayed committed to his family, in good, bad, and worst times.

    ....I just hope i never have to work as hard as he does. Lol.

  2. I struggle with this all the time. Fortunately I can work from home quite a bit, but, the fact that I am home all the time does present another set of challenges.

    I struggled with the work life balance quite a bit. Early on this was to the detriment of my relationship with my wife. Ever since the birth of my daughter though, what is important is family. So now, I find myself trying to work harder within my alloted time at work so that I can spend time with them.

    It is a delicate balance and I have to say that I thank God that I have a job and manager that allow me to do it.

  3. I work on the road a lot and some days its been tough because there is a need for a sense of loyalty to the company but to my relationship with my wife too. Its been a tight squeeze some times between the two forces that have been wanting my attention but although I have moved slowly in the company because of family I have also benefited from being a dad and husband because I took my sweet time in my career.

  4. I often have to travel for work. Last year I did a lot of international travel. The breaking point came when I had to spend a full month in Iraq. I knew I had to change jobs. In 2009, I did change jobs. I still have to travel, but now I don't have to travel across an ocean.

  5. I am a soldier, and a husband. Which comes first wasn't always clear to me. I recently came home from a 15 month long deployment to Iraq, and our marriage wasn't the same. I'm not going into details, but things weren't as good as they were before I left. I had been selected for several Army schools and I've turned them down to stay local and reconnect with my wife. We've since begun counseling and things are slowly improving. I've decided that my marriage is much more important to me than the Army ever could be. Sometimes you have to choose between your career and your family. I chose my family.