I recently saw a Facebook post that got me all kinds of riled up.
It shouldn’t have, because… well, it’s Facebook, but it did and I’m going to blame the meds and my emotionally charged state.
The post initially was about someone being annoyed when they see a woman pumping her gas while a man sits in the car.
I could’ve waved it right off as one of those “some people might be better off just staying in their own lane” type of posts, but I read the comments.
One of the sacred (I’m mostly kidding) rules of journalism is to never read the comments.
People were going off about men who do that not being real men. One person went so far as to say her dad walks over to men when he sees them doing that and preaches to them about it.
I have to admit something.
Russ doesn’t always pump my gas for me.
I also have to admit that I’ve been guilty in the past of wishing he would always offer.
But he doesn’t.
And really why does he have to? He always pumps gas when he drives. I never offer to do it for him. Like him, I’m a perfectly capable adult. Heck, thanks to South Carolina’s extremely lax license rules, we probably got our driver’s license in the same year, so I’m betting we’ve been pumping our own gas for the same amount of time.
He doesn’t always pump my gas for me and it really is fine, but those “not a real man” comments had me some kind of fired up.
For over six months we’ve been going through the toughest thing we’ve ever faced and that’s just since we enlisted the help of fertility specialists. In that time, well, I honestly can’t even tell you all of the awful stuff Russ has held my hand through. It’s just too personal.
He’s seen and learned things about a woman’s body that I would’ve expected to make him, at the very least, cringe. And even if he has internally cringed, he’s never once shown it to me.
There are things about womanhood that are pretty easy to keep to yourself when you’re going through the normal patterns of life. But when stuff hits the fan in the fertility department, a whole lot of that privacy goes away pretty quickly and embarrassment becomes a bit of a lost cause.
Still, he’s never made me feel like this whole process was anything less that worth it.
The man even let doctors open up his most delicate part of his body so we could find out if he would even be able to have kids.
On top of all of that, he’s picked up even more than his usual share of cleaning around the house and he’s started cooking more dinners.
He got over his own fear of needles and blood so he could give me the daily shots that I can’t easily give myself.
He constantly checks on me to see how I’m feeling and if I just need a break.
And he’s reminded me time and time again that we don’t have to do this if it’s too hard, that he’d be okay with using a donor if I want to go through the physically easier process of insemination rather than IVF.
If that’s not a real man, then I’m not even sure I want one.
And a fair warning to the preaching type: The first person who walks up to our car to preach to Russ for not pumping my gas is likely to be the first person I’ve ever punched.