Becoming a Parent, Parent of Twins, What I Learned This Week

You don’t need permission, but inclusion is a good thing

While I have resided on Planet Coupledom for well over a decade, I still speak Single, though not as fluently as I once did.   I still follow some advice Sachems like Carolyn Hax and Dan Savage in my news feed.  Admittedly, I don’t consume their content like I once did, but it is still good to keep up on things since I’m now responsible for bringing two germy projectile-barfing poopsacks to full adulthood.  They are going to have relationship issues and I cannot pretend to be a dad from 1960 who just brings home the bacon and asks the wife to do the heavy lifting where it comes to raising the chill-ins.  I can’t do that, right?  

Which brings me to a post called You Don’t Need His Permission that kinda “bothered” me. Bothered isn’t the right word but English is a fickle lady and I’m not sure how else to describe it.

“And if you don’t believe me that there are still people who think women should get a man’s permission to leave the house, they do still exist and it might be more people than you realize…You can inform your spouse of your plans, but you don’t need his permission.”

I have never met Ash Pariseau in real life but from reading her blog, Dames That Know, my take is she is a solid writer, a smart lady and what I would call a Subject Matter Expert on relationships. Her Twitter profile says she Plays with Fire.  She is also very woke as the kiddies say.

My wife will ask me “honey, is it okay if I go to this work-related event or happy hour with the girls”. But when she says “is it okay” it’s more Conversation Introduction, with a healthy dose of is my sleep-deprived mother of twins self-forgetting anything than actually asking for permission.

I cannot think of a reason I wouldn’t say sure, have fun, unless we did have other plans she forgot about or if I had a conflict that I had already scheduled on our non-existent shared calendar.  And since I’m in my I hate people phase of life, I don’t really get together with anyone much these days so there are very few conflicts.  Spoiler Alert: my heart isn’t all dark and cold, I do occasionally meet up with a friend or two in the real world.

So upon further reflection and without putting words in her mouth, I think that Ms. Pariseau is writing about a specific subset of unhealthy relationships with control freaks and how to identify and mitigate them. Notice she didn’t go all woke and write “partner” or “his/her” permission. No-bullshit advice for women. She is definitely staying in her lane.

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