Are You the Woman Your Husband and Children Want?
This week there have been ups and downs. Let's start at the bottom and work our way up.
The BBC's recent programme presented by Freddie Flintoff, one of my personal cricketing heroes, was the start of a whole new ball game of programmes about men. It was not about ego, opinion, lightweight education and amusement, nor emotion. This was about the rawest emotion of them all: depression. Then this week we had the sight of a widow at the inquest into her husband's death from hanging. What she is feeling we will never know, but "there for the grace of God go I" will be uttered by any woman who's been in a long term relationship with ups and downs and/or a husband who's experienced very high highs in his work life.
These stresses and strains are part of the evolution of a marriage, part of what makes marriage the highest form of meditation, and a process which develops and supports both parties.
Do you as a woman know how best to handle a man who's depressed? It's disheartening that the quick fix solution seems to be to take anti-depressants rather than something far more creative.
It is in these very moments when a man is broken, passionless, without anger, that he is at his most vulnerable both to his own self-destruction and to a woman's inspiration. It's a moment when his defences are down, the rampart has been breached and you literally hold his life in your hand. It's a precious moment, akin possibly to giving birth to a child, an innocent being who's lost the will to live and into whom you can breathe that first breath of life which will get him to take the next breath and the next and the next and so, over time, inspire himself.
A totally depressed man needs you to put aside your issues, your neediness, your weariness, your problems. He needs you to invite him into the future you're creating for and with him. It's the metaphorical eye of the needle. Get him through and for him to see there's no turning back.
And on a more positive note:
This is what a woman, with four children under 7 who has just completed the 42 day Be the Woman You were Born to Be Course said:
"I wanted to become a parent that my children would want. My search led me to an online course and community called Be the Woman you were Born to Be, and I've loved it. It's given me a framework, by going through all the aspects of being a woman, gently to remove the obstacles standing in the way of my enjoying life and being present as a great mother, woman, wife and much more.
"Being online means you can do it in your own time: listen to seminars whilst you wash up, get up before the children to do the actions, and fit it around family life. I finished the 42 day course last week, having started last August, it's that flexible. It takes constant commitment to our own development to feel we deserve the respect, to love ourselves so we can love our children, and so we can be totally transparent with them. That's why this kind of course is so essential for mothers."
If you want your life to make a difference then you may need to make a difference to your life.