Advice to Young Men eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 294 pages of information about Advice to Young Men.
in Pennsylvania, apparently a very amiable young man, having a good estate of his own, and marrying a most beautiful woman of his own age, of rich parents, and of virtue perfectly spotless.  He very soon took to both gaming and drinking (the last being the most fashionable vice of the country); he neglected his affairs and his family; in about four years spent his estate, and became a dependent on his wife’s father, together with his wife and three children.  Even this would have been of little consequence, as far as related to expense; but he led the most scandalous life, and was incessant in his demands of money for the purposes of that infamous life.  All sorts of means were resorted to to reclaim him, and all in vain; and the wretch, availing himself of the pleading of his wife’s affection, and of his power over the children more especially, continued for ten or twelve years to plunder the parents, and to disgrace those whom it was his bounden duty to assist in making happy.  At last, going out in the dark, in a boat, and being partly drunk, he went to the bottom of the Delaware, and became food for otters or fishes, to the great joy of all who knew him, excepting only his amiable wife.  I can form an idea of no baseness equal to this.  There is more of baseness in this character than in that of the robber.  The man who obtains the means of indulging in vice, by robbery, exposes himself to the inflictions of the law; but though he merits punishment, he merits it less than the base miscreant who obtains his means by his threats to disgrace his own wife, children, and the wife’s parents.  The short way in such a case, is the best; set the wretch at defiance; resort to the strong arm of the law wherever it will avail you; drive him from your house like a mad dog; for, be assured, that a being so base and cruel is never to be reclaimed:  all your efforts at persuasion are useless; his promises and vows are made but to be broken; all your endeavours to keep the thing from the knowledge of the world, only prolong his plundering of you; and many a tender father and mother have been ruined by such endeavours; the whole story must come out at last, and it is better to come out before you be ruined, than after your ruin is completed.

224.  However, let me hope, that those who read this work will always be secure against evils like these; let me hope, that the young men who read it will abstain from those vices which lead to such fatal results; that they will, before they utter the marriage vow, duly reflect on the great duties that that vow imposes on them; that they will repel, from the outset, every temptation to any thing tending to give pain to the defenceless persons whose love for them have placed them at their mercy; and that they will imprint on their own minds this truth, that a bad husband was never yet a happy man.

LETTER V

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Advice to Young Men from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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