Marriage News

The Good in Men: Men Who Don’t Retreat When Things Get Tough

2ndVote readers have sent in some great personal stories about “the good in men.” Please be sure to read the collection we’ve put together and share these stories as we work to correct misleading notion that masculinity is somehow “toxic.”

At the end of this project, 2ndVote gifting an Égard watch (3 – Neutral) to a deserving man selected from these stories this Father’s Day.

Bernadette in Georgia writes:

I am one lucky woman. My entire life, I have been surrounded by good men. Good, wholesome men. The kind of men who love their wives and their children. The kind of men who take responsibilities seriously. The kind of men who work hard to provide for their families. The kind of men who rely on their faith to help them grow. Good, wholesome men.

I would like to tell you about two of these important men.

My father is the first man I ever knew. He looks intimidating, but he has such a tender heart. Quiet, yet intense, his family and his faith are the most important things in his life. His love for my mother is like no other. Together, they raised five children. Our successes are a direct result of my father’s work ethic and his relationship with our mother.

My husband is my best friend. He provides for our family and loves me unconditionally. Like my father, he is quiet, but he has an uncanny sense of humor that keeps me laughing. He, too, has an immense faith that guides him in decisions and life. The patience that he shows each day is so admirable and our children are so blessed to call him “Dad”.

I could go on and on about my father and my husband. What makes them superior to other men or how they work so hard to provide for their families. But it wouldn’t do them justice.

Because what shows how “manly” they truly are is what they did when our world fell apart.

You see, children are supposed to outlive their parents. Burying a child is unnatural. It is truly a nightmare.

So when the unimaginable happens, you have to make a choice: fight or flight.

When our son Luke died, my father and my husband chose to fight.

When our son was born with a fatal heart condition (unbeknownst to us before birth), my father didn’t leave our side. He went with us to meet with surgeons, cardiologists, etc. He knew that what we needed at that moment was an extra set of ears, because we were so blindsided and scared, and he wanted to make sure that we didn’t miss any information given. My father was there when we took Luke home after surgery and he was there the night that Luke died. Before that night, over 11 years ago, I had never seen my father cry. But that night, leaning over my son’s lifeless body in an ER room, my father wept. He wept because my son was his new best friend and knew that he would never get to see him grow up. Only a real man can show that level of compassion and love.

My husband also chose to fight. He chose to fight for our son. He chose to fight for the proper treatment and made sure that Luke had the best care available. The night that Luke was born and was life-flighted to the children’s hospital, I literally fell into my husband’s arms. He held me up because I could not stand. I couldn’t handle the fear and my husband took my fear and laid it on his own shoulders. He supported my broken heart while trying his hardest to keep his own heart whole. When we lost Luke, he sat with me while I fell apart and he never made me feel unworthy of his support or love. Without my husband’s strength, I’m not sure that I would have survived the grief that came with losing our son.

So if you have to ask what makes a real man, look for the men who don’t retreat when things get tough. Look for the men who will fight. The men who will look fear and grief in the eye and say “not today, nor any other day”. The men who will stop at nothing to protect their families. The men who, when the day is done, can say to themselves, “I have loved, and I have protected. I have worked hard and I have faced adversity. And through it all, I am proud of who I am”.

Be a real man. A good, wholesome man.

Like my father and my husband.

Thank you, Bernadette, for your contribution. For more information on this project, click here.

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