I recently was out of town for 5 days on a business trip, as a blogger we call that a conference. I purposefully took an extra day on either side of the conference to build in a bit of work time/away time.
Truth is: I don’t think my husband sees me as an equal partner.
Fact is: We fight about it.
Burns a bit, but it’s the truth. When I was gone for those 5 days he managed to keep the kids fed, clothed, and the house clean. His version of clean has a lot more to do with clutter control than germ inspection. But I came home to a ship that was running smoothly … only to have me interrupt it again with my non-conforming scheduling and my ability to scrub surfaces.
We’re no stranger to couples counseling and in one of our sessions we had to evaluate our “love languages”. Essentially – what we needed most from our partner. It still bothers me that he put, in his top three, the fact that he felt loved when he had Domestic Support. (Trouble is, that was in my top 5.)
I struggle with feeling like all I’m good for, in his eyes, is to cart our kids around, clean their clothes, the bathrooms and make him dinner. But knowing I don’t do it well enough or that I’m “letting a few things go” as I get busier with my own career.
Which happens to also not be equal to his. I’m not our main income earner and it used to be something he never worried about. No, he didn’t even think about it. Could have cared less if I brought home a piece of bacon but all of a sudden it matters. And it’s not enough, or, more importantly, it’s not on par with his seasoned bacon.
Now it’s his turn to leave on a business trip, this one lasting 6 days. I know I can handle this because for the past 7 years I’ve done a damn fine job of running a house with kids while he was absent. Work takes him away, even if his head is on his own pillow at night. I’ve single-parented my way through this marriage for large chunks of it and this isn’t new.
I used to undertake huge home-improvement projects on his business trips because I know the hassle of the discussion was absent. No more laboring over “well, what if we did this instead?” or arguing about “but if only we had chosen this color/knob/layout/finish”.
I work well inside of a team, just not when they’re opposing. We’re in the trenches of life (again) but for some reason this trench isn’t bringing us together, it’s tearing us apart.
I do have compassion and realize that the large picture decisions of our lives aren’t mine to make alone. That’s the whole idea of marriage. But when every.single.thing needs to be discussed to the death? I just stop talking.
I don’t care if you’re comfortable with green over blue because I changed my mind. I don’t want to recite a litany of reasons on why or walk you through the process of the simple change. I’m a get-it and do-it girl. I’m the adventure seeker, the risk taker.
And it’s sad, yet true, that I feel like I can breathe when he’s away. Is it because we’re drifting? Our dreams are changing? Or one of us is just growing faster than the other?
Have you been here? What got you out of the woods?
This Curvy Girl Guide Contributor wishes to remain anonymous.