Why “Dear Future Husband” is more than just a pop song—and how it’s disrespectful

Meghan Trainor recently released the music video to “Dear Future Husband,” and, honestly, I’m disgusted.

Throughout the song, Trainor attempts to portray herself as a “strong, independent woman who don’t need no man,” as the saying goes. But being independent doesn’t mean you get to be disrespectful.
It’s clear Trainor is trying to challenge the “stereotypical housewife” trope through such lyrics as:

You got that 9 to 5
But, baby, so do I
So don’t be thinking I’ll be home and baking apple pies
I never learned to cook”

She follows that up, though, with a list of criteria about how exactly her future husband should act that crosses over from “love and respect me” to a petty checklist. If they don’t complete that checklist, they don’t get, as she says, “that special lovin’.”

Dear future husband,
If you wanna get that special lovin’
Tell me I’m beautiful each and every night”

Take me on a date
I deserve it, babe
And don’t forget the flowers every anniversary
‘Cause if you’ll treat me right
I’ll be the perfect wife
Buying groceries
Buy-buying what you need”

I’ll be sleeping on the left side of the bed (hey)
Open doors for me and you might get some kisses”

The disrespect culminates in the lyrics:

After every fight
Just apologize
And maybe then I’ll let you try and rock my body right
Even if I was wrong
You know I’m never wrong
Why disagree?
Why, why disagree?”

Trainor seems to have the idea she can hold intimacy over her spouse’s head, while at the same time not showing the mutual respect that should be part of every relationship. Once she gets what she wants, then—and only then—will she do her part.

You gotta know how to treat me like a lady
Even when I’m acting crazy
Tell me everything’s alright”

Being independent and non-traditional in a relationship can and does work for some couples. However, it also comes with a mutual respect, which this song just doesn’t have. There is nothing wrong with knowing what you want, and if flowers on an anniversary are really that important to Trainor, then okay. But she doesn’t get to use intimacy and respect as a bargaining chip. Those are part of a relationship because they are part of a relationship. We are called to love and respect our spouses (or significant others), and making a list of petty demands is neither.

The song is catchy enough, though, that it will most likely gain some traction and end up being overplayed. And although it’s certainly better (and cleaner) than some songs out there, the ideals it holds up, and the attitudes it portrays in a relationship just aren’t right.

While I’m sure Trainor’s intentions were good, and of the “challenging gender stereotypes” and “independent woman” variety, she missed the mark with this song. Being independent does not give someone a pass to treat others poorly. Challenging gender stereotypes does not mean using love, affection, or intimacy to get what you want (an action which actually reinforces these stereotypes). Give respect and you will get respect. Simple as that.

What do you think? Is this song (and music video) disrespectful? Or should it be taken as sarcasm and tongue-in-cheek?


51 Things to Know about me

Besides my name (Jordyn), my age (18), and where I live (Michigan), these are 51 things to know about me:

  1. I’m a Christian
  2. I’m homeschooled
  3. My room is covered with photos of my friends
  4. I keep the ticket and program from every Broadway show I see
  5. My first concert was Taylor Swift
  6. I want to go into journalism
  7. I dual-enroll at a local college
  8. History is not my subject.
  9. My birthday is in January.
  10. My room is painted an obnoxious green color and I absolutely love it.
  11. I have a small, but ever-growing, collection of rubber ducks.
  12. The only time I’ve been out of the country was to Canada.
  13. I have a weird hatred for Ohio engrained into me because I am from Michigan.
  14. The state I have visited the most is Colorado.
  15. I took Latin for 6 years.
  16. I rode an elephant once at circus.
  17. I have a black belt in Shotokan karate.
  18. The Victorian era is my favorite time in history.
  19. I love coloring books.
  20. When I was little, I was once so insistent on not getting a shot, it took two nurses and a doctor to hold me down.
  21. Spiders are the worst.
  22. I really disliked the movie The Fault in Our Stars, even though I loved the book.
  23. I hate the characters Marius and Cosette from Les Miserables almost as much as I hate Romeo and Juliet.
  24. I really, really hate Romeo and Juliet (but also still love it).
  25. My favorite Shakespeare plays are Much Ado About Nothing and Taming of the Shrew.
  26. If the bathroom door is not shut, I can’t go to sleep.
  27. Flying on an airplane doesn’t scare me. Not being able to touch the bottom of a lake does.
  28. I have traveled more alone than I have with my family.
  29. I once got a flask as a Christmas present. I don’t drink.
  30. I hoard chocolate because if I don’t, I won’t have chocolate.
  31. I hate shopping malls.
  32. I have a piggy bank dedicated solely to pennies.
  33. I take naps on a weekly basis.
  34. I know how to swing dance.
  35. If I could have any superpower, it would be to fill things up. My bank account, my enemies’ bladders, my water glass. It would make my life so much easier.
  36. I once won an all-expenses paid trip to a writing camp in Hannibal, Missouri to learn about Mark Twain, and it was one of the coolest experiences of my life.
  37. One of my favorite books has been, and will always be, Percy Jackson and the Olympians.
  38. When I was 13, I owned a hot pink sweatshirt with two fighting cartoon cookies that had the caption “tough cookies.”
  39. I own exactly three pairs of heels.
  40. The futon in my room doubles as my closet because I am incredibly lazy.
  41. I do most of my writing after midnight.
  42. One of my favorite things to do is nothing.
  43. One of my worst tendencies is to keep everything. Every. Thing.
  44. My least favorite people are the ones who are so insecure that they make themselves feel better by drawing attention to themselves.
  45. I can’t grow out my nails to save my life.
  46. I still sleep with a teddy bear.
  47. I love teaching children.
  48. I have the best group of friends.
  49. I have always wanted to be in a production of Les Mis.
  50. This is my third attempt at a blog.
  51. I am happy.