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Tag Archives: Responsibility

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My dear Jack, I’m sure you’ve heard about The Seven Deadly Sins. They’re the stuff of legend in Hollywood. There’s even a movie with that title, though of a disturbing nature. The movie is about a psychopath. (Why do they always have those psychopaths for these things?) The seven deadly sins are Solomonic actually. They are the seven abominations. Though “The Parson’s Tale” in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales as well as artworks like Dante’s Purgatory, help illustrate the sins. If you want to have a successful marriage you have to be mindful of the seven deadly sins.
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My dear jack, we all make mistakes. Some mistakes are immediately apparent. But some others take nine months to manifest. Yours will take nine months. Impregnating your girlfriend while still in school is the nine month variety of mistake.
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My dear Jack, no one can force you to marry whom you don’t want to marry. Choice of marital mate is your prerogative. Marriage is an act of will. It’s why we say, “I do”. That presupposes we can say, “I don’t”, even at the altar! You shouldn’t marry under compulsion. If you don’t want to marry someone, don’t! But that doesn’t absolve you of responsibility for the natural consequences of your actions: If you impregnate someone you’ve got to take responsibility for the pregnancy. And please don’t tell me the pregnancy was a mistake. Considering how pregnancy comes about, how can it be a mistake? You went into a young woman. You impregnated her according to the order of nature. If you were not mistaken with penetrative deliberateness, how come the result of your ardour is now tagged a “mistake”? Continue reading

Dear Jack, there’s that other aspect of husbanding people don’t consider. It’s called fatherhood! You’ll be surprised how much being a good father to your children is a measure of your value as a husband. It’s all about a sense of responsibility – being responsible for your family. Which in a way is a measure of love for your wife – no loving husband abdicates parental responsibility. There are too many women playing the role of father because the real dad won’t show up or step up. Continue reading

My dear Jil, the notion of rights without responsibility defeats the very purpose of a relationship. You can’t have expectations of your spouse or partner and not imagine you owe him responsibilities too. A relationship conceptually breaks down when one side expects but has no sense of obligation to the other party. That is not the formula for a happy marriage or happy ending. It’s not a balance-sheet, it’s a one-sided ledger. And it’s a debit system. Someone keeps withdrawing from the emotional bank of the relationship, never deposits. Continue reading

Dear Jack,

You can’t be married and be so selfish, so self-centered and so irresponsible. You’re just going to destroy lives, and if care is not taken create bitter children. Marriage is not about me, me, me. It’s about her, it’s about us, it’s about them. (By them I mean the children). Continue reading

Dear Jack, I honestly don’t get it. You fell in love with this lovely girl. You’ve dated her for years now and thinking of marriage. And then your mum “took her name” to the Pastor who “examined the matter” spiritually and declared the marriage accursed.

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My dear Jil, you can’t be reliant on your boyfriend for happiness. You can’t be dependent on a man for happiness. And that’s a heavy burden to load on someone. It can’t be fair! No man possesses that kind of capacity- to keep someone happy. It’s an emotional albatross. In a way he literally has to give up his life to tend to your happiness. It’s some form of control on your part. It’s reverse selfishness and it’s dangerous. You’ll never be satisfied. You’re going to end up hating him. And that’s because you’ll be holding him responsible for your unhappinesses.

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My dear Jack, I’m not sure it’s advisable to create a generic profile for women. Yes, there are basic commonalities but every woman has her unique identity. Same goes for men. I do concede though that there are broad spectra. Let’s call these spectra personality typologies. But as useful as these personality typologies may be we still have to come to terms with the peculiarities of the individual.

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My dear Jack, I think you worry too much about what people will say in any given situation. It paralyses you, immobilises you and reduces your energy commitment to your vision. You second guess and third guess yourself. Because of this you can’t go in decisively on any scheme.

You worry because you don’t yet understand the mechanics of public opinion, or how the world runs. Opinion is not necessarily a thought out position despite what the word sounds like. Opinions are not necessarily processed cogitations either. They’re just proprietary expressions of individuals. Opinion is the biggest fundamental human right franchise. Everybody has an opinion. Everybody will have an opinion. Most times (99% of the time actually) opinions are expressions of prejudice, and hidden and not so hidden agenda.

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