Many of my faithful readers may be surprised, like I was, to find out which blog post in 2012 received the most views. Well, without further ado the blog post receiving the most views in 2012 was “Me, My Boyfriend And His Baby Mama“.
With over 300 views, I decided it was time to expand on some of the thoughts listed within this blog post.
Children outside of marriage is a very common phenomenon in American culture. This in no way justifies the situation, but it certainly does spotlight the need for attention, wisdom and clarity to be given to those of us who find ourselves navigating through this very tricky terrain.
At the center of all of this blended family turmoil is often a very strong but silent figure, and that is the MAN. As drama, confusion, hurt feelings and misunderstanding swirl all around like a tornado, he is relatively silent. And that is the problem.
I can tell women what to do to cope all day long, and in some cases, I will.
But let’s face it, situations like this can only be coped with if the MAN refuses to take action.
So that brings the next question…
What should the man do who finds himself in a new relationship but having children with another woman or women?
I’m going to answer this question in two ways. The first way is what the man SHOULD do. The second will be what women should do when he won’t. Fair enough? Ok, let’s get into it. *smile*
What Should The “Man” Do?
The man, the father, and the significant other of this situation should STEP UP and take the leadership role. A situation this chaotic and frustrating is screaming for a leader and is in desperate need of a hero. It’s so easy to ignore it all and let the women “duke it out”, so to speak. But who really pays the price when dad checks out of the situation both mentally and physically?
Oftentimes, men will run away from situations not because they are unloving but because they do not feel adequately equipped to handle the situation. How do you explain as a father to children that you never loved their mom and she was simply a one night stand? Or how do you explain to your current girlfriend or wife that you and your children’s mom have a very complicated relationship that you don’t know how to correct?
Wow. Tough stuff, right?
Yes it is but these are just some of the truths that men have been scared to face.
And that fear has torn families apart.
My Pastor gave us a very simple yet profound truth that I want to share with you now. He said, “When you want to do right, God will help you to do right”.
Doing the right thing isn’t easy. But it is easy to tuck tail and run, and let everyone else figure out how they will manage. That’s why so many men do it. But the Grace of God is available to us, not to help us to abandon our responsibilities but to face them.
Sometimes we forget that people (children included) really can handle the truth.
Can my children handle knowing that their mom and I won’t ever be getting back together?
Can my girlfriend or wife really handle the fact that I have mixed emotions about my past with my children’s mom?
Can we really make it past these complicated circumstances and find some sense of peace and normalcy?
These are questions that so many men can’t answer so they refuse to even attempt to deal with the matters that surround their families.
But the time is now to face the giants. God will help you do right, if you WANT to do right.
The question is, do you want to do right or do you want everything to be easy?
It’s not easy to look someone in the face and admit you are scared, confused or simply don’t know. But there is something very powerful and spiritual about a man admitting that he doesn’t have all the answers but he will STAND with his family, in the midst of it all.
I can remember as a child my family facing some very difficult circumstances. There was even one occasion where we had to live in a hotel for a while because we had no place to go. I even remember our car being repossessed. But there’s also another thing that I remember. I remember that we were together-as a family. My parents didn’t send my sister and I off to live with other relatives until they “got on their feet”. My father didn’t leave my mom and us during that time, opting rather to start over with a new family. He made some mistakes. My mom made some mistakes. But I can remember that because we walked through those dark times TOGETHER, we made it through and loved each other all the more.
You’ll be surprised at just how strong your family can be if you stand and refuse to run emotionally, mentally and physically.
They really can handle the truth.
They really can deal with the difficulties that life brings.
But what they need from you dad is not heat, air conditioning, houses, and cars that your paycheck may or may not adequately provide for them. What they need the most from the adults in the situation is COMMITMENT.
No matter how bad it gets, how frustrated we all get and how angry we may become, we are ALL committed to this family.
Yes, I said it. Your wife, your children AND your baby mama are a FAMILY.
It’s the family YOU created. Don’t despise it.
Thank God for it and treasure it.
Find the value in it.
It may not be the perfect arrangement. But it’s what you have, it’s what you made and it’s what you have the opportunity, with the help of the Lord, to improve for the benefit of your children.
You don’t have to explain one-night-stands to small children anymore than my father had to sit my sister and I down and explain the specifics of bankruptcy and foreclosure. But what he did when those things came to our family was all the explanation we needed. He stayed and he stood.
What’s my advice to dads with multiple baby mamas and a wife or girlfriend who’s feeling neglected?
Stop running, stop drinking, stop smoking, stop cheating and stop trying to do everything so as not to face it.
Stand up in the middle of it and LEAD.
Everyone is waiting for you to speak and to give direction.
Everyone is waiting on you to set clear boundaries.
Everyone is waiting on you to be the hero.
And they may not like everything you say when you stand and take the lead.
They don’t have to.
The bottom line is that you are now doing what God created you to do. The family will have its nucleus again- YOU.
Order won’t be restored instantly. It takes time to break up a riot and it’ll take time to bring peace between people who are used to going at each others’ throats. But you must stand and you must lead.
Peace will come if you lead everyone to peace.
Boundaries will be respected if you create and enforce them.
My brother, if you life feels like it’s full of traffic, then you’re the traffic cop.
It’s time you got in the middle of the intersection and directed that traffic. Tell people when to stop and go. Tell the children when to yield.
Showing up to the battle is half the battle.
In part two, I will discuss what the women involved in this situation should do if the man won’t step up and lead. You don’t want to miss it!