So, last night I was lying awake, in the dark, starting at my bedroom ceiling fuming. Postively fuming. All of a sudden from out of the dark came a sound. It was snoring. It was coming from my husband.
Not five minutes before that we ended the day like so:
Upon entering the bedroom at midnight, I discovered four stacks of neatly folded clothes on my side of the bed...all were mine. I was so tired I was cross-eyed and did not want to put these clothes away right now, but in an effort to keep the bedroom straight most of the time I have resolved not to put my clothes on top of the dresser but actually IN the dresser. Revolutionary, I know. I looked at the clothes and looked at my husband (who incidentally has been home since about 5:30 pm)and said, "Really?" He stared at me. "Really?" "What?", he asked. "I put away three loads of clothes BEFORE I went to work today and you can't put away one?" He doesn't even miss a beat or bat a stinkin' eyelash before he says, "I put all mine away!".
I stared at him.
"Really?", I repeated.
I am not smiling at him.
No more was said. I put my frowny, "I don't like you" face on and put my clothes away in silence. I'm sure I was a little too forceful with the hangers on a few of those shirts. I am sorry for that. So, I change for bed in silence, put out the light and crawl into bed being careful not to touch him lest he think all is forgiven, which it most certainly is not. Yes, I am a gigantic baby. So, there I was fuming. I was fuming pretty good when the snoring broke the silence. My mouth actually dropped open and I repeated for the 4th time "Really???" out loud to apparently no one.
How do men do that???
Ok, so I've read the books and attended the little "I want the best marriage in the world" seminars...I get it. Men compartmentalize. Men have little compartments for all their different emotions. When they no longer need or want to deal with a certain emotion they put it away..and it STAYS there. I know my husband is not the only one like this because women talk..alot..and every woman I've talked to complains about this. You have a fight and you spend all night fuming while your man snores it up like it never happened. Or, you have a fight and you rehash it for hours while your man goes about his work day like nothing happened. Either way, it's like nothing happened. That doesn't mean it won't be revisited, it just means that until it is revisited he doesn't need to think about it or stew on it the way you do.
It's totally annoying.
Here 's my question: Why can't women do the same thing??
Can I learn this behavior? Can I train myself to shut off and go to sleep or tuck it away and be productive without pouring over said event and having fantasies about what I should have said/wish I'd said/will say to him next time we talk about it?
Is there a class or a pill or a book or a mantra that will keep me from being my usual neurotic self?
Sadly, I think not. The thing I think is most important for me to realize is that when the situation gets "stuffed" into its little compartment until a later date it has nothing to do at all with whether he cares how I feel or not. Its totally easy to think that because he is not being held hostage by that moment in time like I am that he doesn 't care. I have to say that I'm pretty sure it's actually opposite of that. I'm not a man obviously so I can't speak as one but I have lived with one for 16 years so let me break it down for anyone who may be struggling with the same concept. Just because he isn't thinking about it constantly and obsessively until a resolution occurs doesn't mean he's not working on the issue. This is how it usually works out at my house: Situation...disagreement...silence (his not mine)...I stew...He doesn't...Time passes...I get tired of stewing and move on...THEN he will randomly bring it up, offer a resolution, or apologize. While it makes me crazy to revisit something that I have already resigned myself to, I understand that he put it away for a little while, did some things he had to do (work, eat, sleep) and when he had a moment to think about it again ONLY then did he take his little compartment out and work on it. It makes me crazy, but that is how he functions. I'm sure I make him crazy by wanting immediate resolution to a conflict. Marriage is not about being happy all the time...it's about loving the person you are with even when you want to murder them, right?
Either way, he slept well last night.
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