A few weeks ago, I wrote about what I believed it took to be a good father. In the past few weeks, given that it is now the holiday season, I am thinking even more about family. One of the things that people ask me a lot, in reference to Luc, is why I stayed with him so long. While the answer to that is much too complicated to get into in the confines of one blog post, one of the most obvious reasons many women (myself included) stay too long is because of societal pressure. Many women are so terrified to face the stigma of being a single mother (or the terror of fighting a monster in custody court). Everywhere I turn lately, there is another article about the importance of a father or the miserable statistics about children raised by single mothers. In the past few years, my view on single motherhood has changed drastically. When I was with Luc, however, the overwhelming presence of negative press against single mothers made me fear becoming one. This fear had me resolved to stay with a grown ass man child. In addition to this fear, our society (myself included) has become accustomed to allowing poor behavior for the sake of keeping a family together. While it is important to keep families together, it is also important to have clear boundaries and realize when someone’s behavior is too toxic to be healthy for that family.
Note: Before I learned that Luc was potentially a serial killer, I had come to realize that he was a grown ass man child.
Some of you might be wondering what I mean when I say “grown ass man child”. A “grown ass man child” is a man who essentially hasn’t matured beyond childhood. He plays video games, refuses to work (or cannot keep a job), refuses to cook, clean, or help out around the house in any way. He would rather play video games than go to your child’s music recital and when he goes, he will complain about how he would rather be somewhere else. He doesn’t change diapers and doesn’t deal with his own crying baby. If the father of your children is a grown ass man child, you are essentially a single mother. In fact, being a single mother seems a bit easier than living with a grown ass man child, because at least you don’t experience disappointment when you make the mistake of thinking you can rely on this person.
Here are some real world examples of what I am talking about:
1) Gaming: Now before you get your panties in a bunch, I am not talking about the guy who plays guitar hero with his kids and uses video games as an acceptable form of bonding with his children. I am talking about the extreme gamer – the man who doesn’t sleep well, shower enough, or work enough because he is glued to a violent video game. Instead of playing a child friendly video game with his child, he plays violent video games at the expense of quality time with his children. If your man would prefer staying in a dark room shooting zombies than going to the park with his children, you have a big problem on your hands.
2) Bad Work Ethic: I have noted before that I understand that everyone falls on hard times every now and then. If your man is a hard working man who got laid off, I am not talking about him in this category. If your man refuses to even look for a job, has every excuse in the book as to why he cannot find one, or keeps getting fired from the jobs he does get – you have a problem on your hands. Grown ass man children don’t have a problem letting the women in their lives pay their bills indefinitely. If you allow this to happen, it will be at the detriment to you and your children. You will be run raged working several jobs to supporting his gaming habit.
3) “That’s a woman’s job”: It isn’t the 1950′s anymore. Women work outside of the home and it is plan ass backward to think that a man shouldn’t help out with cooking, cleaning, and child raising. A grown ass man child, however, refuses to work or help out around the house. While you are working, he will be at home playing video games, eating cereal, and leaving dirty dishes for you to clean. When you get home from working, he will ask you to make him a meal and expect your to clean up after him just as if he is one of your children. If you have children together, you will be expected to feed them, change diapers, and attend school events all on your own. In one example, obtained from one of my readers, the husband came to his daughter’s holiday music show and complained the entire time. When it was over, as the little girl was asking him what he thought of her solo, he said, “this music show was terrible. That is two hours of my life that I will never get back.” Anyone who has ever been to a children’s concert knows that it isn’t always the best singing; however, if your child is singing you should want to be there and you will care enough about them to tell them you enjoyed watching them sing.
Finally, the point of this post is to both assist women in spotting a grown ass man child (or recognizing that they are with one), and empowering them to either call this person out and attempt to force a change (very unlikely that they will change) or take their children and leave. Living with one of these men can drive you crazy, and you might believe that you can ignore his antics and still achieve the perfect looking family. The danger, however, occurs when your son or your daughter views this man’s behavior as normal. Most grown ass man children are not dangerous sociopaths, but most sociopaths will display this sort of apathetic and dispassionate behavior toward their family. If your children grow up seeing this behavior as normal, they will be more likely to invite a grown ass man child into their lives in the future (or become one themself) – and he/she could be the dangerous type.
Grown ass man children and sociopaths alike prey on good people. It is natural for a woman to want to take care of her husband and her children; however, it should also be natural for her husband to want to help take care of his family. There is a big difference between caring for your significant other, and allowing that person to drain the life out of you. Having been in a relationship with a grown as man child (who turned out to be the dangerous type), I can assure you that being a single mother is much easier.