Work and Family

I live in the Philippines, and I’ve been a citizen of this country far longer than I can remember. I understand that our country’s classified as a developing nation. But there have been recent and notable developmets in terms of our economy, thanks to the international remittances from my brothers and the rest of those brave Filipinos who left the comforts of their families just to give their families the comfort provided by money.But you see, sometimes it’s what ruins many families nowadays.

My brother told me that in his many years of working abroad, he’s met lots of men who were having affairs while working away from their families. And he did not say whether they were Filipinos too who have families of their own, or not.

Sadly, Filipinos have been bred to think that money is out there, and to be able to have a good life, you must sacrifice the proximity to your loved ones because there is no other way.

I hate that mindset. While it is true that there really is money out there, but we don’t understand that it isn’t just about time and sweat, even the trauma of sleeping with an empty stomach.

It’s way more than that. There’s always the threat of losing your whole family in the process.

I know someone very close to my heart who experienced just that. He went away to fulfill his duty as the breadwinner of his family. He wanted to have money to buy his wife and daughter their own house and lot.

And so, he went away. Months went by, and everything was still okay. And then a year. We’ve been hearing humors of him being seen with another woman, but we shunned the rumors, because we thought of him as a godly man. Then his wife, who works here, got news about his dalliances – whose house he goes to every night, where they go to, and what he buys her.

Of course, she didn’t believe them, until she caught them red-handed. Now, we got no news of them anymore. Who knows if they have a baby now.

What’s saddening is that he went away just so he may be able to provide a home for his family. But today, the very family which he initially loved and toiled for, is as shattered as an abandoned shack. So much for those promises.

That person still holds a special place in my heart. I’ll be ever grateful for his influence over my life. But now I’m beginning to accept the fact that they’re nothing more than memories and influences.

Here’s the worst part: it only takes him a few hours to travel back to his family. He doesn’t even need to have a passport.

It seems to me that nowadays, the hardest thing is to stay faithful. Broken families and affairs are the norm, and can we blame them? I won’t. Even as teenagers we’ve been taught to bail out whenever we’re not happy with our partners any longer. As early as 12 we’re being influenced to commit casual sex with people whose names we barely even know. And how many hours do people sleep together, compared to the time that they spend to get to know each other first? Who would even imagine that one-night stands and friends with benefits are more popular principles than sex after marriage?

Well, there are faithful men and women out there, I’ll give you that. But what is the guarantee that they will never fall into that pit? Where?

Maybe it’s high time we remember what really matters in this life.

And money is not only out there, but temptation and sadness too. We might not always have a win-win situation by having a happy family and a fat purse, but there we see which of those victories is sweeter.


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