23 July 2009


I woke up in a cranky mood today. I suppose it’s a combination of causes. We slept in the guest room last night, for one thing, and I just didn’t sleep all that well. The kittens kept alternating between snuggling and attacking. I’m not keen about the alarm clock in that room and it’s on the other side of the bed. Add to that the fact that I was irritated with T when we went to bed, and she with me. And that, I suppose, is at the heart of it all.

She was irritated because I was out later than I said I would be. I went over to a teammate’s house so that we could practice a couple of things. We are teaching a class together on Saturday and wanted to iron out who was doing which section. That took a little while. We also went over two forms that she is showing at her upcoming 2nd degree black belt test, for which I am attacking. That took a while too. And, my friend is kind of the chatty type so we wasted some time just… chatting.

Now, I asked T if she wanted to come with me. She didn’t, even though she knows this couple and likes both of them. She was tired and wanted to stay home and watch tv. She also wanted to get in the hot tub for a bit and ease her achy muscles. That’s fine. I’m not insisting that she come when she really would rather not. For crying out loud woman, do what you want to do!

BUT, don’t be petty when I want to do my thing!

Yes, it took longer than I thought it would. So what?! We are not joined at the hip. I refuse to have the kind of relationship where we are in each other’s pocket. I have my outside activities that I was doing before we met and there is no way in the world I’m going to give them up. If she doesn’t have enough stuff going on, too bad. Get something going on. I’ve invited her to train my martial art ~ she is not interested. And, that’s ok. I would love it if she did, but it’s certainly not a deal breaker if she doesn’t.

Partly it’s because T is a real homebody. And, when it comes down to it, so am I. But, I do have an active social life, a wide circle of friends, many interests and some passions. T has a smaller circle of friends and she doesn’t get together with them as often as I do with mine. I think she is used to the kind of relationship where you just revolve around each other. I find that claustrophobic. And boring. Her last girlfriend didn’t live with her but stopped by her house every day after work and spent an hour or two before going home to her three kids. My impression is that T made sure she was home in time for the gf to stop by, always had a cocktail ready, often made her dinner, and never just said something like, “Hey, I’m going out with X and Y after work. I’ll see you tomorrow.” That seems so sad to me.

Also, I’ve been out of a relationship more than in one for many years. I’ve had a few unimportant ones in the last ten or fifteen years, but long stretches of time where I was single. When you are perpetually single, you find things to do. T has been in one relationship after another. Probably should have spent a little time in self-reflection…

I think that I need to educate this woman of mine. I know that she understands intellectually that we can and should have outside interests; she has said as much to me. She has to believe it, though. She has to be happy for me that I have stuff going on that I enjoy. If she is bitter or grudging, or pissy that I have stuff to do, then that is a deal breaker.


8thdayplanner said...

I love when my partner is out doing her stuff because I get to watch the movies I like and she hates.

Sounds like you two have some communication/negotiation/compromising to do.

Good luck with that.

e said...

8dp: We sure do. It would be easy to put it all on her but it wouldn't be fair. I have fallen into the trap of being "nice" when I should have been honest. My goal is to say what I need and work from there. Sigh. It's not always easy, is it?

The Crow said...

"Sigh. It's not always easy, is it?"

No, it sure isn't. Relationships are a lot of hard work, and even then there are no guarantees on how it will turn out.

Best wishes, e. Hope everything works out well for both of you.


8thdayplanner said...

No. Not always easy. But what worth having is ever easy?

Anonymous said...

I dont know many women that aren't having these push/pull struggles.

All you can do is look after your needs and hope she looks after her own.

Maria said...

Much better to lay your needs out on the line than to suffer in silence and then, trust me...a few years down the line, the resentment and anger will find a way out.

Grumpy Granny said...

First of all...what martial art do you study? Second of all, I LOVE it when G goes off to do her "stuff" because I get the house to myself. Unfortunately, she's seldom gone long enough at a time when I'm not working for me to watch a movie a la 8DP.

It's hard to START talking about what you need, instead of being "nice" but once the habit is established, it becomes SOP and is much easier. In fact, EVERYTHING is easier if both parties operate with openness and a realization that neither party's happiness depends on the other.

Perhaps because we are older, G and I managed to start out that way and have stayed in that mode going forward. It makes for a VERY easy and TOTALLY worthwhile relationship.

I wish you both the best. Sounds like just something to talk over, not a major crisis.