If I will get a nickel for all the times, I was introduced using this phrase….
As a person, we all have different roles that we play in a society like a Man is a husband, a son, a father, etc. Same with us Women who are mothers, wives, daughters, sisters, etc.
But what should be the general rule of thumb when you are introduced as someone’s husband or wife? Do post in the comments what you think about this?
Let me give you an example when my husband goes to my office gatherings, he is introduced there as my husband but the next question that they ask is what do you do? What are your hobbies? How do you spend your time away from work? Nobody assumes that he is just a husband. He has a personality that people want to know about.
On the other hand, when I am in a gathering and if I am being introduced by a person, especially from an older generation, as soon as they will say that I am a wife they will follow it with this cringe-worthy quote “Behind every successful man there is a woman.”
Not that, I don’t like to be introduced as his wife. I take pride in that. I am proud of him and his achievements, and ladies if you don’t know that he is married, well, I will parade my customized Mrs. Singh Purse in front of you like a hundred times.
My problem with this quote is two-fold.
Firstly, when you say behind every successful man/woman or whatever, you are taking away credit for that person’s success. There are a lot of factors that go behind making a person successful, their parents, siblings, friends, education, and financial background, but mostly it is that person who despite good or bad situations chose to become successful. My husband could have been maybe more successful if he had someone else as his wife, or maybe not (as I chose to believe).
I read this story somewhere that two men met at a party and one offered a drink to another and said, I drink because my father was a heavy drinker and now, I am too. It is part of my childhood and I blame my father for giving me this bad habit. The other man declines the drink and says, I don’t drink because my father was a heavy drinker. I saw how alcohol ruined his life and now I have decided to stop this habit in my family generation.
The moral being, many get the same challenges, but it will depend on how you want to respond to your life challenges.
That is why nobody, your husband, or your wife, can make you successful. Own your success. Own your failures too. Your family could be a part of your journey, but it is YOU who are walking the path and making your own way.
The second problem that I see with this quote is why when a lady is introduced as a wife society felt the need to add this quote to justify her existence. It does not matter if you are a homemaker or a working woman, it is so insulting to prove that you are worthy of being a wife only if your husband is successful. What if he is a failure, then are you going to blame it on his wife too? And yes, people do that.
The notion that I let him be or let him do whatever he wants to do, implies that I could have been a nagging wife and stopped him from doing the things he does. So, I should be credited for his success, which is me being a quiet and submissive wife. Argh….
Why can’t a wife be vocal, an active partner, and successful as a team? Why do I have to let him be, why can’t we decide how to be in harmony with each other and work towards shared success. Why is it so hard for people to understand that it is no longer acceptable for a wife to STAND BEHIND?
I am and I will always be STANDING WITH HIM.