When I was younger I thought the plan was to find a big strong man to handle all the tough stuff while I did all the light but meaningful things. I never had a desire to be a housewife, but I thought I would devote myself to work I loved just because I could. I worked hard to position myself to get that job, so all I had to do was go get it. My big strong man would handle paying bills, hold me when I get emotional, and slay any proverbial dragons that come our way.

Of course I know now, through the magic of my mother’s example, as well as other women, throughcontinued living, and even through Harlequinn’s, there not only are no clear divisive lines of resonsibilty in a relationship, there’s no clear strongman. Every now and then each person has to shoulder the other’s burden so they can get some relief. In a relationship, you need each other for different things at different times. When it’s his turn to lean, can I hold up his weight?

The word of the year is accountability, but added to the should be balance. No one should shoulder all the burden alone, all the time, or else why be there? It can be difficult to be balanced ina relationship, but it doesn’t hold up well any other way. Both people need to give & receive, listen & be listened to, be encouraged & be an encouragement to. So even when he wants to hold it all in, you have to draw it out. Even when I’d rather just do it myself, I wait for him to open the door. He has to do it, so I let him. Of course now I stand awkwardly in front of doors as if waiting for them to open on their own every now and again, but a little chagrin never hurt anybody!

I don’t need a Superman, nor do I need to be someone’s Superwoman. I don’t want a man of steel who never cries or gets discouraged, and I’m not a weepy maiden. Mutual love, repect, & caring, paired with honesty and commitment, those things just about all of us want as human beings suit me just fine. There are no superhumans anymore, anyway.