There are so many moms: single moms, stay-at-home moms, working moms, new moms. They all have an identity and community. Most of these moms fit into a similar category for a wife, so the category for wife and mom blurs a little, but the point is they usually have a community. There is another group that dances around all of these groups that lead a double life: the “fringe” mom.
What is a “fringe” wife, or mom?
A fringe wife/mom must lead a double life because while her partner is at home, because she needs to be able to fit into whichever of the above categories she can. While her husband is away, however, she is IT. These women, I am one, are strong and independent. We have to be because when our husbands are gone, they are 100% unavailable. Our husbands travel (pilots, truckers, regional sales), firefighters, or military personnel. Any situation that arises while our partners are away is ours to handle. These situations could be anything minor from the annoying beeping of the smoke alarms, to a pipe bursting, to a child in the emergency room. We rise to the occasion, usually have a fabulous list of contacts, and get it done.
But, do you both feel valued?
This remarkable sense of “we can do anything” becomes a problem in the marriage when our partners come home. That very word, “partner” implies they want to share. They want to feel valuable in the relationship. The children come to us because they know we make the decisions and know who their friends are and what is going on in their lives; we can make a good decision. How do we give our husbands value and make them feel needed in the relationship? This question is what a fringe wife battles half the week, month, or year that she is married.
A relationship with a “fringe” creates its own set of problems. I recognized early that my husband had to feel needed. How does this manifest at our house? When my husband is home, I cannot figure out how to change a lightbulb. I actually don’t change one light bulb that burns out while he is gone either. When he gets home from a trip, he comes home to spots of darkness in the house because “can no one figure out how to change a lightbulb in this house?” He gets the ladder, grumbles to himself, puts the empty box on the counter, so I will buy replacements and changes the burned out one. He secretly loves this because he knows he is needed, after all, without him there would be no light in our family.
What are your thoughts on this concept? Are you a “fringe” mom too? Discuss this blog (and many other topics) in the online community Wright Wellness Center has set up. I’ll be in there to answer questions and engage in the conversation! Or, you can comment below!