By Eboni Elise
Recently on social media, gospel recording artist Kirk Franklin posted a photo of him and his lovely wife Tammy giving kisses to each other in an airport where they had their first major fight two months after they married. When I first glanced at his heartfelt caption, I thought it was a great lesson about marriage, which is patience, forgiveness and second chances. While I appreciate Kirk Franklin’s transparency and love that he shows to his wife, the sentence that kept jumping out at me in his caption was “Tammy tolerated way more than she should have.”
This statement had me thinking - Why do we, as women, tend to be more tolerant than we should in a marriage? We are often the ones who sacrifice our happiness for the betterment of the relationship. We are the ones who are taught to be submissive, who are encouraged to “stick it out” with our men who have often make mistakes and (for a lack of a better phrase) don’t have their sh*t together. Men, similar to Kirk, who took 20 years to actually grow up and learn how to be a good husband.
From the looks of several Facebook comments under the post, I wasn’t the only one with these same thoughts.
What would happen if the tables turned? Would he be expected to have the same patience with his wife? To be just as tolerant and give her several chances to get her act together? I don’t think so.
In a marriage or relationship, this is such a double standard. If a man cheats (and more than once) a wife is led to forgive her husband, do what is best to keep the family together, to stick to the vows they made on their wedding day. And she might even hear the oh so common “It’s in a man’s nature.” But dare a woman to cheat and a man is ready to leave like a blink of an eye. Is he given the same speech on staying together? To be more tolerant and give her a couple of chances to mature?I don’t think so.
Men get away with so much foolishness because there are women who put up with too much. Demand better and you’ll get better. Tolerating too much clearly worked for Tammy but would this outcome be the same for all women? I don’t know if that would’ve worked for me. I would love to hear about this from her perspective.
Don’t get me wrong, everyone makes mistakes and in marriage, commitment and loyalty is everything. But it has to be 100% from both partners. POINT. BLANK PERIOD. A balanced marriage is one that is a 2 way street. It consists of two imperfect people and it’s not always easy. A wife should not be the only one in the marriage who is constantly tolerant if her husband is not doing the same in return. Double standards should not apply.
Choosing to stay committed with someone who struggles with issues in themselves requires much strength and the patience of a saint. Really, should women be expected to be more tolerant? How long do you wait for a man to “grow up”? Let me know your thoughts.