Wandering Hubby

Dear Lily,

I have been married seventeen years. My eternal companion is a good man. I don’t worry about him and the ladies. I’m certain he is faithful to me. My problem is that he doesn’t stay home with the kids and me like I think he should. He is always going out and doing things with his friends: golfing, bowling, hiking, shooting, hunting, you name it. At least two nights a week and sometimes on Saturday, he is doing something with his friends rather than being at home. 

Deserted Wife

Dear Deserted,

I am of two minds on this, which usually means I’m a little imbalanced in my thinking on the subject. Let’s see if we can find a balance.

On the one hand, men need time to go out and hone their manly skills. These will come in handy when we walk back back to Jackson County. You don’t want to be led to the New Jerusalem by a couch potato. In the coming calamities, you want your man to be good at things that require hand-eye coordination. Besides, you have to admit that things can be easier in some ways when he’s not home. Men can get under foot so easily.

I’ll tell you a secret, though. Men sometimes behave in ways that make their wives want to get them out of the house. More on this in a moment.

On the other hand, home should be your husband’s first priority. Men who spend too much time with buddies are forgetting this important principle. Women discipline children by distraction. Men by intimidation. It’s the natural order of things. You can’t raise children properly without this important combination. Of course, there are other reasons a man should be home. You need him to pay attention to you.

The important thing here is that you gain control of the situation. Right now, if he’s being a pest around the house, it’s so you’ll send him to go be with his friends. He’s in control. You need to be. It’s fine for him to have some buddy time, but it has to be on your terms and fit into your overall plan.

I suggest you begin on the internet, looking for do-it-yourself repair sites. This is not so you can repair things. It’s so you can break them in ways that look like it just happened. You’ll be amazed at the various ways you can disable a washing machine and make it look like an accident.

I hesitate to suggest it, but you can easily control a man by offering certain favors. I’m sure you do this anyway, but you must become more expert at the timing. Start dropping oh-so-subtle hints the moment he walks in the door after work. Keep him thinking all evening that there’s something in it for him if he stays home, and home he’ll stay. Whether you follow through later is up to you.

Some wives think that home teaching, church leadership responsibilities, and quorum service projects are enough buddy time. I tend to think so too, but let him get a little man time on your terms. When the latter days play out, you’ll be glad you did.

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