Getting Along

coupleThis is me with my husband. We’ve been married twenty three years. We get along really well; I don’t know what I’d do without him.

Still, about twice a month I end up in an argument with him; I am talking and he is answering and neither of us are getting a thing out of it.

I ramble on about my day, how my boss said this or that, how it made me upset or confused, how I solved an issue, how I need to figure out a problem, talky talky talk, talky talk, chitty chitty, blah blah… and my husband, when he’s on his game, just says “aw” or “oh” or “wow” and then I wind myself down and I feel better.

But about twice a month, see… about twice a month he tries to solve the problems. And instead of “aw” or “oh” he says “you should…” or “you shouldn’t…”

That never helps. It just upsets me, makes me feel judged and wrong and foolish, makes me worry about what I did or didn’t do, makes me think I should keep my mouth shut. And I get louder and I argue back, then: here is why I don’t do that, here is why I did this, here is the reason your suggestion is not helpful. And he gets frustrated and louder and we go round and round and he says “Why do you ask for my advice if you don’t want any!” And I say… well, I say… “I didn’t!”

Because — sometimes — what I’m talking for is for my own ears, to fold my own mental laundry, to sort my own thoughts out, and what I really want is just a pat on the head and a sympathetic nod: I know how that feels. You are not alone. What I want very much is to be not all alone and wrong and wrong and always just so wrong. That’s what I want. But what he thinks (about twice a month) is that I want him to jump in and FIX it. And that just derails everything. It’s the opposite of what I want. I am wronger than ever. Now I have to argue just to stand still, and there is no moving forward at all.

Sometimes, people are just talking through a thing on their own. Sometimes, I really am talking just to hear myself talk. I say this to my husband and he says “but you complain about this same thing every week!”

Yes, he’s right,  I do. I do.

Thanks for putting up with it: Happy Anniversary!

4 thoughts on “Getting Along

  1. Cass and husband – this rings so true, not so much the arguments but being able to think out loud with your partner and have him be interested just because it’s you talking. One of the things I most missed when John died. Happy to say have now been 33 years with lovely man who listens.

Leave a Reply