Dear Dr. Laura,
I had not heard of you when I was married years ago. I was 23, a recent college graduate, and thought I knew just about everything. I dated my husband 3 months before we graduated and moved 4 hours apart due to jobs. We dated long distance another 12 months before we were married. I knew we were too young to start having kids and besides, I really enjoyed working. I did not consider myself a feminist but I did believe that when I had kids, I would go back to work and my husband and I would equally share in the child rearing.
My husband was a manager and worked 7 days a week. I brought casseroles and our dog to his office on Saturdays for a "picnic" on his desk. I cooked 5 nights a week, grilled one night and had pizza hut date night on Fridays. I was in charge of the housework, laundry, and yard work because my husband was gone most of the time.
When I turned 29, I told him I was ready to start our plan of having kids. We had saved a ton of money by not eating out, no vacations, and living modestly. We did not have a fantastic marriage, but he kept promising he just had to work like this "a little longer and make more money" and then we could talk about it again. A year passed and nothing changed.
I finally asked him "when is enough enough?" He said he could never make enough money and he would not have time to take care of a child at all. I'm leaving out all the temper episodes of cursing, throwing or grabbing me. I chose to leave with the clothes on my back and move out.
As much as I wanted a child, I knew I could not expose a child to a father who would not walk through walls to take care of him/her. My best friend begged me to have a child to "save" my marriage, but I told her I could not do that to a child, no matter how much I wanted one. I have since had several friends that chose to have kids with "poorly chosen" dads and it has been nothing but pain for everyone.
I ended up having a very lucrative career and recently took a severance. This fall, I will be the proud mom of two Chinese foster brothers. I cannot wait to be a stay-at-home mother and take care of my kids. They are older because I am older. I know it will be an adventure, but I also know God will give me the wisdom and strength to take care of them and raise them to be good men!
Thank you for your program and message to people in our nation. We need your wisdom and insight. You are an incredible woman and I do wish you all good things for your family.