‘My Wife is Irrational, Therefore She’s Wrong’

light bulb in sunset

(Image/freewhd.com)

I know it’s hard, guys.

I’ll never be confused for a genius or scholar, but I’m reasonably bright in a Get B+ and A- Grades Without Trying kind-of way. And I made all of the same arguments you’re making. I repeated them until I was blue in the face, sometimes in my best dickhead voice while my wife and I volleyed shots at each other in another fight in which no winner would emerge.

I agreed with you so much that I unknowingly bet my entire family on it. And lost.

Maybe some of you guys are really tough and stoic. Maybe when bad things happen to you, you brush it off like it’s no big deal and move on gracefully.

That’s not how it went for me.

I could barely breathe when my wife and little son weren’t home anymore. This isn’t some “evil monster entitled man-hating feminist” I’m talking about, raging uncontrollably over petty things like dirty dishes. This was my wife. We met at 19. We were married nine years, many of which seemed and felt good. This was someone who very much wanted to stay married. And she reached a breaking point. All humans have them.

I cried. I vomited. After more than 30 years of mostly feeling what I can only describe as normal or very good, I experienced what it means to break on the inside. I don’t know how far away rock bottom was, but it couldn’t have been far.

That experience taught me why people commit suicide. Sometimes, it hurts so much that dying and shutting it off permanently feels less scary than the possibility of feeling that bad forever. I’ve said it a bunch of times: I didn’t want to die. But for a little while there, after a predominantly semi-charmed life, I didn’t really care if I did.

All around me, life went on. The sun kept rising and setting. My friends tried to care, but only people who have been through divorce really understand. People told jokes. Others laughed. People were happy. But I was miserable, no matter how positive of an attitude I tried to keep. I felt like dying every day for months.

THAT is when I learned the lesson so many men complaining about my “dishes” post have not learned: Two people can experience the same thing at the same time, but feel very differently without either of them being wrong.

Maybe all those times I acted like my wife’s post-partum depression was a figment of her imagination since I didn’t get it, were poor, ignorant and insensitive choices.

Are Our Complaining Wives ‘Irrational’?

That’s what John said after reading She Divorced Me Because I Left Dishes by the Sink, a headline that accidentally hookwinked hundreds of thousands of readers.

He called it “irrational” for a wife to be upset about a dish by the sink.

Here’s the common male thought process: Because it’s “irrational” for her to feel that way, a husband is not obligated to cooperate on the matter. After all, “irrational” is not so different than “wrong.”

My wife is wrong. I am right. End of discussion, bitch!

It doesn’t even seem crazy to me because that’s exactly how I felt in those frustrating marriage fights, and I’m reasonably smart. This isn’t something that had ever come up in life until my girlfriend and future-wife started upsetting me with all of her “irrational”ness.

If we fought long enough, she would just cry, at which time I thought she was unstable, but had an easier time speaking with her then because Sad is so much easier to deal with than Angry.

In John’s current form, he has no chance of ever finding common ground with a wife or girlfriend. Because any time he considers her opinions or emotions “irrational,” he will simply dismiss them as inconsequential. Once his little argument is over, he’ll never think about it again.

And maybe he doesn’t care.

Maybe single guys don’t care because they don’t want to be married anyway. I’m cool with that.

What I’m not cool with are the guys suggesting their “rational” opinion that a glass left by the sink—innocently and with ZERO malice—shouldn’t be dismissed or deemed less important than their wives’ “irrational” emotional response to it. I’m not cool with people who want to marry or want to stay married doing things I know to be toxic in relationships.

Rational Emotion: Is There Such a Thing?

Emotions are subjective things. The things that make you happy, sad, angry, horny, afraid, ashamed, confident, inspired, etc. are not the exact same things that make other humans feel those same emotions.

I believe, in very general terms (as we cannot pigeonhole every single human into one narrow silo), that men and women—husbands and wives, in this case—have VERY different emotional responses to things.

It’s why a guy can call his buddy an asshole and laugh about it in a male-bonding capacity, but would likely get a different result if he called his aunt one.

A critical lesson of my divorce: We must allow others to have their own individual human experiences, and accept that they’re real even when they react to something differently than we do, or describe a conflicting feeling.

What that means is, some people can be called an asshole and it’s funny, and some people can be called an asshole and it REALLY upsets them.

One is not rational while the other is irrational. One is not logical while the other is illogical.

It’s simply two separate people experiencing the SAME thing two DIFFERENT ways.

It’s not right or wrong. It just IS.

I used to believe my wife was irrational. Because I believed my wife was irrational, I never took seriously her requests for me to more assertively participate in our marriage on MANY levels—not just dish washing, which I actually did reasonably well.

I predict that any man who doesn’t understand the dish metaphor, OR feels offended and reacts defensively to it as if I believe wives’ or women’s feelings are somehow more important than husbands’ or men’s, also doesn’t participate actively in his marriage.

It likely means that when his wife tells him that something he does or doesn’t do hurts her, he dismisses it as her being “irrational.” And because he does that, she feels abandoned and alone in her marriage. Wives who feel abandoned and alone in their marriages will eventually do one of three things: Have sex with other men, leave their husbands, or both.

Deny that at your peril.

Maybe You Could Just Believe Your Wife

When your wife tells you something hurts her enough to bring it up to you in conversation, knowing it will likely create conflict, you should try to believe her.

If you’re a smart guy (and if you’re still reading this, I KNOW you’re smart, because the mouth-breathers stopped more than a thousand words ago), then you are statistically likely to be married to a smart woman.

I KNOW that it doesn’t make sense to you, when she talks about how something you consider minor and meaningless hurts her. That’s basically why EVERY divorce happens. You’re not strange. You’re just like most guys. You’re just like me—the me before I broke and had to start over again.

And Then the Entire Conversation Changes

I hope I’m safe in assuming no man still reading is the kind of guy who would slam his wife’s head against the kitchen counter, or crack her ribs with a baseball bat, or throw her against a wall and scream what a stupid worthless whore you consider her to be.

I hope that you’re the kind of guy who genuinely values her, and would prefer to stay married because divorce is shitty. I believe you are.

When you think of “hurting” your wife, you might think about physical pain, or how she might feel if she discovered an affair or another betrayal.

You don’t currently equate Another Meaningless Fight! with painfully wounding her. It’s not your fault. Your brain doesn’t naturally connect those dots any more than you’d feel afraid of someone throwing a sponge at you.

That’s why YOU NEED TO BELIEVE HER. You need to step outside your own mind for five seconds, and see the world as it really is: That person over there was hurt by something I did. Even though that same thing would never hurt me, it’s still true that it happened. If I care about that person, I need to make sure I never do that again.

Hundreds of men said it. And five years ago, I would have agreed with them: “Why does it always have to be the man changing for the wife? I’m pretty sure the wife could also show love and respect by just putting the glass in the dishwasher and not complaining about it! I hate that men always get blamed for this stuff even though it takes 50/50 to make it work!”

The answer to that is: You’re NOT changing for her. You’re not going to tell her she’s a crazy, nagging, complaining shrew AND also not help her with things she pleads for help with for the same reason you wouldn’t hit her with a baseball bat.

Because it hurts her. And you NEVER want to intentionally hurt her. And once the truth dawns on you: Holy shit. Now I understand why she gets upset about me throwing my socks on the floor, and that it causes her pain in ways I don’t experience. Then, the light bulb can go off.

Ohhhhhh. Because she has told me this 18,000 times, and I always dismiss her as crazy and tell her that she’s wrong, I can finally understand why it FEELS to her like I’m hurting her intentionally. It all makes sense now.

A lot of men think their wives shouldn’t be allowed to feel hurt by things because that same thing would never hurt them. The man makes the conversation about the thing they disagree on, instead of how bad it makes her feel.

But if they had the conversation they could both agree with—the one about how neither of them want to feel disrespected or see their marriage end in divorce—just maybe something really good could come from all this.

Just maybe, when we give, we get.

Just maybe, when we make the first move and are leaders in our relationships, we are treated well in kind.

Just maybe, marriage doesn’t have to suck at all.

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129 thoughts on “‘My Wife is Irrational, Therefore She’s Wrong’

  1. […] through some comments over at Must Be This Tall to Ride, I’m really struck by what a powerful trigger emotional abandonment is for many women. To not […]

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  2. I am going to have my husband read this. I am honestly not sure he will even do so upon my request. And if he does, he might just dismiss it like he does with so very many things that seem small but all together are huge. Thanks for this insightful post. It’s nice to know some men ‘get it.’

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Gold! Pure Gold. You need to start a men’s mentor group.

    Like

  4. Married 20 years says:

    Sorry, but if someone is so fragile to be bothered by inconsequential things like that, they probably need help from a mental health professional.

    My wife leaves the inner roll of the toilet paper role on the bathroom counter. She does so because she wants to put it in the recycling. She inevitable forgets and I will find it or two or three lined up on the counter. When I see it, I laugh a bit because it is who she is and toss the in the recycling.

    As a fully adjusted adult who wasn’t raised to be whining navel gazer as so many are today, what i don’t do is take it as some sign of disrespect and threaten divorce or write long winded whine sessions on the internet.

    And before the angry wife brigade jump on me, I do 75-80% of the housework and ALL the cooking.

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    • Matt says:

      Thank you for being a patient and understand guy, and being a good husband to your wife. Being married 20 years is awesome.

      For some people, long-winded whine sessions on the internet help them rethink THEIR relationships (which look and feel differently than yours), and God-willing, maybe they can be married 20 years (and beyond), too.

      Like

    • McDoty says:

      His point is that if you did ask her, just once, to throw it away… and she told you that you were crazy and could have done it yourself, that it’s her response that would be hurtful to you. And then if you ask her again, and she keeps getting more and more defensive, “and, ‘ugh your such a whiny idiot.” About it… that her dismissal of you, and then continuous, seemingly deliberate denial of your request to not leave it on the sink is what would hurt you. Not the inanimate object. How you read this and couldn’t see that, I will never understand. I’m assuming you didn’t read it.

      His point is that people who can’t say, “sorry, I’m just really forgetful, I’m not trying to intentionally be a lazy dumbass,” and who instead say, “omg… that’s dumb,” to a person they married, who probably isn’t dumb… is likely repeating that behavior in multiple situations, over and over. So… if you do it to her about the dishes, you are probably also doing it to her when it comes to her family, or her career, or her sexual needs.

      Let’s turn it around say you love your car, (I’m using this example, because it’s a common thing for people to care about)… and let’s say your wife has zero feelings about this. To her a car is just something to get you from point A to B. No feelings involved. You let her drive it, and she eats in it, doesn’t stain anything or do any damage, or spill. But you find out, and are mad. What if she treated you like you were being a totally crazy person? And laughed at you? I mean it’s inconsequential right? There was no harm done. No lost value, not even anything to clean, like in the case of your dish, or her tp roll… She didn’t even eat anything with a scent that can permeate the fabric. You didn’t even have to pick something up after her. No harm done right? So why would you be mad?

      See the point is that it MATTERS to you, that you set a boundary, you declared what you were comfortable with, and she deliberately ignored it when she ate in your car. That’s just not okay. If she LOVES her kitchen, the way you love your car… And if her boundary is “dishes don’t get left on the counter.” It doesn’t matter how irrational that is to you, when you deliberately break it, the pain it causes her has nothing to do with a glass. It has everything to do with you breaking her trust, and assuming her desires to be unnecessary, and assuming that she knows better and her way is superior. THAT is what hurts.

      Your “toilet paper roll” example isn’t a relevant comparison to what he’s talking about. Because you don’t care about the toilet paper roll, in fact, it seems to be somewhat endearing for you. But… If for some reason it bothered you, no matter how irrational it may seem that it bothers you. Your wife CHOSE to marry you, and she should, at minimum have a real conversation with you about why it bothers you, and/or she should, at the least, try to be less deliberately bothersome, or (if she doesn’t believe it’s a behavior she can change) should try and assure you that she is NOT leaving the roll there to break your boundaries, or hurt you.

      People have things that they are picky about. They just do; it doesn’t make them crazy, or stupid, just because they are picky about other things than you, or pickier than you. That’s his point. He’s not talking about a legitimately crazy person. He’s talking about someone that YOU chose to marry, who feels like their desires and requests are being glossed over and written off.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Carolyn says:

    Thanks. In my marriage we tend to gravitate toward the opposite roles. This is definitely an example of one of those times for us. He is constantly telling me things hurt him and I think he’s totally irrational. I’ve said as much at least 100 times. I think I can see how I need to remove logic from these conversations and understand that it is possible for him to experience the world differently than I do.

    Like

  6. Thelion says:

    I’ve been reading just a few weeks before you melted the Internet. I have been impressed by your honesty and insight.
    I just wanted to touch upon something that jumped out at me in this post.
    You talked about how your wife would go from angry to sad.
    I may be completely alone in this but sometimes i feel as a woman our anger can only be expressed within a certain range. Then it’s cray-cray time. So sometimes a civil (-ish) woman may begin to cry. Cry because they are angry. Sad -mad as they say.
    Men seem to respond to this better than rage-mad. Lots better.
    Some men may see this as weakness. They are most likely correct, but would dislike the alternative.

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  7. Alyssa says:

    I enjoyed this article immensely. I think marriage is so difficult. Sometimes even when you make concessions and accept responsibility, you still find yourself lonely and wanting more. Opening up dialogue is a huge step but if it’s only one sided you won’t get far.

    Like

  8. Liza says:

    “We must allow others to have their own individual human experiences, and accept that they’re real even when they react to something differently than we do, or describe a conflicting feeling.”
    The answer to all disputes based upon actions which piss off everybody in a close relationship and friendship, which usually ends up with a estrangement or divorce.
    It’s easy to just make the other person take your side, what’s harder is taking, the five seconds it takes to see anothers perspective and to fix your problems/discuss things like adults.
    You know what makes me feel exhausted with people and quit them, even if I loved them with all my heart. THAT.
    It shouldn’t be so hard to do that. It’s how you win people over in the first place, see their perspective, appeal to that, except, you do it, all the time.

    Like

  9. […] if you’re married to a shitty husband hell-bent on leaving dishes by the sink and accusing you of being irrational when you suggest such a “petty” thing is somehow worth fighting about, this is how you get your husband to listen to you, read things you wish he would read to better […]

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  10. […] partner is “stupid” or “crazy,” instead of really understanding on a fundamental level that two people can experience the same event at the same time, and come away describing it differently without either being […]

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  11. Justin says:

    Just another article on how women aren’t responsible for anything that goes wrong in relationships. As usual there are miles of comments from women agreeing with you. Let’s see you write an article about anything women should do or do wrong. Even the smallest trivial thing. These same women showering you with praise will turn on you instantly. “How dare you tell women what to do you sexist pig!” I can see it now, and have many times. The problem wasn’t you or leaving stuff laying around, if you did that perfect she would have found something else to complain about.

    How did she react to if you complained about something she did or didn’t do? Assuming you ever did that, she probably threw a fit. Women in general, roughly %99.999999 of them, are incapable of accepting any responsibility for their actions and will fight to the death to avoid admitting fault. They will, without hesitation, point out your mistakes. Most women are selfish, irrational people. Any woman reading this that’s been in a long relationship or is married, your spouse hates things you do and don’t do even more than you hate his. He just knows there is no point discussing them with you. Speaking rationally to a woman is like explaining algebra to a toilet. It’s not going work. Treat them like the spoiled children they are.

    This will probably be deleted. By the author. Your wife obviously kept your balls when she left

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    • Matt says:

      You’re going to have to do better than diet-sexism and insulting my manhood for me to delete your comment, Justin. I’ve been called worse.

      You’ll have to forgive me for believing in personal responsibility. I can’t remember the last time I saw someone point fingers and blame everyone else for their life problems, and then have it work out for that person afterward.

      I don’t think it matters how “selfish” and “irrational” women are, Justin.

      I think it’s your job to enforce your boundaries and not let selfish and irrational people into your life.

      And I think once you get married (to a rational, unselfish person), it’s your job to follow through on your marriage vows. If you don’t do that, it means you’re a negligent, dishonest, lazy, douchebag.

      If you DO do that, and your wife does not, then SHE — and not you — is the one who sucks and failed to adhere to your marriage vows.

      She becomes the criminal. And you are the powerless victim, completely free of any wrongdoing, and I’ll totally be on your side.

      Is that your story? Victimized by a super-selfish tyrant who refused to accept responsibility while within the relationship you stood as a beacon of sanity, humility, unselfishness, and fair conflict resolution?

      Is that what you want me to believe?

      That you, the guy who types insults to strangers in the comments of blog posts and claims that 99.999999 percent of women in the entire world (approximately 3.7 billion people) are literally incapable of accepting responsibility for their actions, was the voice of reason in previous relationships, and that his female partners eventually proved how selfish and out of touch with reality they were?

      Hmmm.

      Here’s your Wives Suck at Things Too posts you asked for:

      https://mustbethistalltoride.com/2016/06/08/the-worst-thing-wives-do/

      https://mustbethistalltoride.com/2016/04/06/the-4-ways-women-can-help-save-marriages/

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  12. Kelly says:

    Bwahahaha!

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  13. […] didn’t think she thought “correctly” during our disagreements, defaulting to a position of believing her to be illogical, and therefore—wrong. I didn’t think I was responsible for her emotions (and there are healthy boundaries to be […]

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  14. […] said anything like that to them, except for his sad and angry wife he thinks is overly emotional, or outright WRONG during disagreements regarding her feelings and opinions concerning their […]

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  15. […] I don’t think I did. I think because I “knew” I was right and she was wrong (Because I just want what’s best for you and our kids, babe!!!), that any resistance from her […]

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  16. […] So if she’s saying there are relationship problems, and I’m saying there aren’t, my conclusion was that she must be mistaken. She had to be wrong. […]

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  17. Shane says:

    My wife and I just had a baby 4 months ago. She gets up to go clean the baby bottles and I say, “why don’t you go ahead and pump and I’ll take care of that for you and make your lunch for you (for work tomorrow). She keeps working at the sink. I say “dear, I’ll take care of it, just go pump (breast milk for daycare the next day). She still keeps cleaning, so I leave her alone. I don’t want to start an argument by being forceful so I let her finish cleaning. She goes into our bedroom and pumps and I get up, fill the last bottle of breast milk for daycare tomorrow, make her lunch and pick up the living room. She comes out pissed off that I didn’t “just do it” “You shouldn’t have to offer she says, you should just do it, she says.” I say, I offered twice to make your lunch, wash the bottles and finish the chores for the night and you refused.” Keep in mind, she never asked me to do anything I just offered twice and she refused. In my mind, it is her choice to be stubborn and reject my offer and she seems to want to have a fight about it. In her mind, she says I shouldn’t have to offer I should just do it. I offered twice and she ignored me and kept washing bottles. After all of this, I say “Let’s talk. Why are you mad at me?” She says that “You shouldn’t have to offer you should just do it.” Here’s where I’m very confused, because I offered twice, in an effort not to be forceful or aggressive in any way, I let her finish as she clearly chose to do. In my mind, I’ve offered to do work for her, and in part I do it even though I know she is being stubborn, so her worse problem is she has a husband who offers to do the work (and does the work) and even after she is pissed at me I want to talk it out. Help me to understand.

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    • Matt says:

      I’m sorry to read this, Shane. It’s tricky with new mothers because it’s such a crazy-stressful (physically/mentally/emotionally/financially) time.

      Post-partum depression is VERY real, and warrants our love patience. If that’s a factor, compassion is critical.

      Even minus post-partum, the chemical composition of your wife changed unexpectedly and against her will, and she’s trying to work through it on not-enough sleep, on trying to be a great mother, on all of the things that she’s afraid of for herself, for your baby, for your marriage.

      This post is about assholes, or at least oblivious men, being dicks to their wives.

      You don’t appear to be that guy.

      Your wife may ACTUALLY be irrational right now. But compassion is likely the appropriate response.

      Big-picture, I perceive men to often accidentally mess up a bunch of little tiny things in marriage. Things that seem so insignificant to us, that we forget about them. They cease to exist.

      But they exist for our wives. They didn’t disappear. And so when they’re carrying that around, feeling legitimately hurt about things we don’t understand, maybe that can come out in the form of unproductive communication and volatile emotions just four months after delivering a baby.

      Advice: Be as patient and loving and grateful as possible.

      It’s HARD to deliver babies and adjust to a new world where yourself isn’t #1 anymore.

      Be grateful, even when it’s inconvenient.

      And when she’s ready, and when you’re ready, perhaps you can ask her what might have happened in your past that has built up through the years making her feel sad or angry or afraid.

      Seek to understand.

      She’s likely to things you think are stupid. Totally insane things that didn’t affect you at all.

      Take it.

      Take it without feeling defensive. Because she’s still there, being your wife and your child’s mother.

      Acknowledge that things you have done or not done HURT her, even if it was purely innocent and accidental.

      When we accidentally kill someone’s pet with our car in a freak accident, it’s NOT our fault. We didn’t mean to.

      But in real life, we just contributed to causing pain for people. We own that.

      When we do the same thing with our partners, working on NOT hurting them, and making THAT the goal, rather than trying to convince them their pain isn’t real or isn’t valid, we change everything.

      It’s hard. Because we have feelings too.

      It’s hard to be steady.

      But be steady anyway. Your family deserves it.

      And you, sir, deserve it.

      You, your wife, and your new baby have my very best wishes.

      I remember what a confusing and oft-frustrating time that can be.

      Love hard. Put them first. Take care of yourself, of course. But put them first.

      Hard. But worth it.

      Like

    • Natasha says:

      This is such an important thing for men to talk about because I do feel we lose a lot in marriage or relationships when babies come intothe mix. Don’t get me wrong, having them is the best thing ever but it can truly wreak havoc on a relationship.
      This is probably obvious but really stop and think about this. Your wife just supported and delivered a human being to this world. Pregnancy is shit(unless you’re one of those glowing women) and then the delivery…..most dignity goes out the window. Natural delivery or cesarean, her body parts were all out there and if you’re real luck you got to watch her poop between pushes.
      So then there’s this baby, and it’s wonderful, but so overwhelming. If she nurses she is now responsible for the livelihood of this baby, completely(and breastfeeding is soooo much more difficult than they make it look!). Her hormones are probably going crazy, she’s surviving on less sleep than you, her boobs leak at the drop of a hat, and she’s probably still not lost the baby weight. Her body is no longer her own and if she’s suffering from any sort of post partum depression(which typically sets in about 3 months post partum) her mind is no longer her own either.
      So basically, do what you need to do. She has the best excuse in the world for being irrational. If she doesn’t want to be bothered with asking, just do it. Clean up, make lunches, make dinners, whatever you have to do. It may not seem like it right now, but you’ll come out much stronger.
      Try not to become resentful of all of this. Silly as it sounds find a way to decompress(jogging, reading) that won’t impede on what you’re doing to help. I know men can become resentful. My husband did.
      The last thing I want to say though is its awesome you care enough to ask. To read this blog that, let’s face it, seems to gain more female than male attention for many reasons. I’d say you’re heading in the right direction just because you care to ask.
      Congrats on your baby! I loved leaky boobs and loss of dignity so much I had four!

      Liked by 1 person

  18. […] Yet another example of the two perspectives, and how two people can look at the same thing and describe it differently. How two people can disagree with neither being wrong. […]

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  19. Nope says:

    Well,
    I read your article and it possibly saved my marriage. I, like you, have always fancied myself as an excellent communicator and great with empathy. However, my wife of 7 years and I have just had our biggest fight and it has been lingering for several days. Divorce was contemplated by both of us to the point that we had just given up. As I was turning in for the night on my trusty old couch, I did a Google search for how to deal with completely illogical women and your article popped up. I read it and immediately went to my wife with a different perspective and a good apology. We are now in the process of mending our relationship. Thanks so much for your contribution.

    Sincerely,
    A Big Fan

    Like

  20. […] following the 2013 divorce that ended my nine-year marriage that my wife needed things in life (whether or not I agreed with her conclusions) and that my job—my solemn duty as her husband—was to help her acquire or achieve those things, […]

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  21. kalyncofield says:

    Yes. This. This is my LIFE. If only my husband could read this.

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  22. […] In real life, the problem often lies in one person believing their ideas, opinions and ways of doing things are right while their partner’s hare-brained ideas, opinions and stupid way of doing things are wrong. […]

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  23. […] those times you told her she was crazy or wrong simply because she disagreed with you. All those times you chose video games and poker night to sitting next to her. All those times you […]

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  24. I love you. no – not in THAT way – in the way that you’ve restored my hope that men can get this and there is hope for men and women in relationships. I had come close to deciding it would never work, that though I love men, we’re just fundamentally doomed for them to not get it – no matter how hard we try. And believe me, we try. At 51, I had nearly decided to quit because I don’t want to work that hard anymore when the chances for success are next to nil. Remarkably, just a few weeks before I found your blog, I had had the conversation trying to break up with the man I’d been dating for 2 years – because why bother. There was no fight and no drama. We’re too old and wise for that. But i could feel things moving into the same pattern my marriage moved into. With no kids between us to force superhuman effort, I was done much quicker this time. I had let go of another perfectly good man who it seemed couldn’t figure out that all you have to do is humor me a little bit once in a while.

    You don’t have to agree with me all the time. Just don’t dismiss me or ignore me. Don’t roll your eyes at me when I ask for your help. I get enough of that from my daughter, I don’t need it from you. Once in a while, when I ask you to go for a walk with me instead of whatever important tv show you’re watching, agree immediately and enthusiastically to do it. Just like I do when you ask me to go to a car show or the tool store. Not my cup of tea, but I went with you because you enjoy it and I enjoy bein with you when you are enjoying yourself. Be half as curious about what makes me tick as you are about the fuel injector thingy on the motorcycle. Be half as curious about me as you are about the NFL standings. Be half as curious about me as you are about the next episode of fill-in-the-blank TV show.

    I love this man, just like I loved my ex-husband. But I have figured out I love myself more now and wasn’t settling for that again. I didn’t yell and scream. I didn’t even really try to tell him how he could “fix” it. I just told him it didn’t look like we were a fit. And I let it go. It took less than a week. Some kind of switch was flipped. He gets it. He GETS it.

    And then, when I was mad at my ex husband for still being pissy and not responding to a text message with a little information about our diaghter’s schedule. (Would it kill him to be polite and say “okay.”? – apparently so.) I found your blog and my joy was multiplied. My twice divorced boyfriend gets it (and how the fact that he didn’t get it before ended 2 marriages) and you get it. And I’m guessing from what you’ve written, you’ve helped some other men get it. It’s as if the planet shifted on its axis. There is hope.

    I won’t do it – but I wish I could send your blog to my ex husband to say THIS is why I left. And if you don’t figure it out, after the honeymoon is over, it will be why your new wife leaves too. He’s a good man, and most of the time a decent dad to our daughter. But he was a shitty husband. Thank you for helping me keep the bar raised and know it’s not a pipe dream.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. […] During a disagreement, we believe we are right, which means our wives MUST be wrong. […]

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  26. […] still trigger easily into “I Am Right, Therefore They Must Be Wrong” mode, but fortunately I recognize this assholery much faster than I used […]

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  27. Anon-e-mouse says:

    Wow, just wow. Thank you.

    I am a man on the other side of this situation (or at least I THINK I am on the other side) and don’t know if we will get through this or not. I hope so. Your articles seem like a glimpse into my life.

    Like

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