Not to be confused with OUT-dated..
And I like my vibrant Lilly Pulitzer featured image…so don’t judge.
I read this post over at Biblical Gender Roles , and it spoke to my heart in a way that few things can. When I read this, I got chills down my spine because I could relate to woman posting this: I’d been in her shoes, and felt the way she did. So, as hard as it might be, I just had to share this with you.
About a year into our marriage, my husband and I had become accustomed to our arguments and our bickering. We didn’t argue EVERY day, but about once a week we were at each other’s throats over one thing or another. While he was gone on one of his every-weekend hunts he had been going on for about 6 months, I realized that I was mad at him. I was dreading him coming home. Why? Because I was jealous. I was jealous of him being gone every Saturday from before dawn til mid-afternoon. I was jealous of his hobby.
Now, this may seem trivial, and you’re probably thinking “why don’t you just go with him?” or “why are you jealous? That’s stupid!” When you are on a tight budget, and husband is gone doing what he likes, and you’re a newlywed and seemingly-ALWAYS-broke couple, the only option is to sit at home 90% of the time; which is exactly what I did. And none of you really know my husband’s Hunting Zone, but when he’s in it, get out of his way. I did go a few times, and I learned that it was best if I stayed at home.
Honestly, he probably prefers I did. Not because he doesn’t want me there, but because I don’t know what I’m doing when he runs off into the woods to the bay (hog hunting term for “Holy Crap, the dogs have the hog hemmed up in a corner, we have to get there now!”) and I’m standing in the woods alone or on the fourwheeler at 2am in the dark..
Yes…that really happened. I was left on a fourwheeler in the middle of a hunt-club at 2am in the dark.
No…it hasn’t happened again. Again, the reason why I don’t go with him.
After binge watching two seasons of Grey’s Anatomy in one day, and not moving off the couch for more than 5 hours, I saw an article online that said “BINGE WATCHING SHOWS COULD BE EVIDENCE OF DEPRESSION.”
I thought “Huh, well that sucks for those people!”, turned up the tv and proceeded to watch 4 more hours of Netflix before I realized that it didn’t just suck for them, I was doing the same thing. I had spent every weekend for the past year at home, alone, with my pug, on the couch, binge watching Netflix. When it hit me, I was angry. In my mind, my husband should be spending all of his free time with me! We should be going and doing things that married couples do, not me laying on the couch all day waiting for him to come trudging in the house and fall asleep in the recliner, which was his normal routine. I was frustrated and hurt and mad at myself for not realizing it sooner.
***PSSSSSST…..If you haven’t read my first post Hello World, now would be a good time to see what happens because of this…kind of like reading the end of the book to find out what happens…***
My hatred towards his hobby quickly became the sore-spot in multiple arguments. Me feeling neglected and second-best to hunting, him not understanding how I could feel that way when I saw him every day, me explaining to him that an every day situation is not the same as him putting effort into spending time with me, blah blah blah…
It took two years, a lot of fighting, and the night where I had my car packed and was headed to my mom’s house for him to finally understand: he needed to start dating his wife again.
I didn’t need him to spend every dime on me, and I didn’t want him to completely stop doing what he loved. But women need affection. We need to know that we are loved and appreciated. Not necessarily just affirmation that we are doing a good job or anything like that, but we are emotional/feeling creatures, much more so than men are. Men don’t need a reminder we love them: they assume know since we married them, cook for them, clean up after them, and take care of them in general that we love them.
I finally sat down and told my husband exactly what I needed from him: just a portion his time. Not his money, not his hobby, but a few hours set aside for us together as a couple, like we did when we were dating and loved spending time together. That night was terrible, and there were a lot of tears and a lot of issues drug up and brought back to the surface, but that following weekend, we went out on the first date we’d been on in a long time.
We realized that yes, we are together A LOT. But, it’s our normal routine. We carpool to work together, we ride home together, we are together the majority of the day. But it’s a daily routine that everyone falls into. Yes, we do have separate hobbies, and since the realization that if I didn’t get out of the house I was going to gain another 50 pounds from my affair with Netflix, I have started doing things on my own more on Saturdays: and it’s helped me IMMENSELY.
Just because we are together a lot does not mean that we have to stop dating each other. Before marriage, we put our best self forward and did whatever we could to make each other happy. Why does that stop when we are married? In my opinion, it should never stop.
Reading this post from Biblical Gender Roles brought up a lot of less than desirable memories, but at the same time it brought up the good memories we’ve had. It made me realize really how far we’ve come since that moment, and how long it’s been since I’ve felt alone in my marriage. Yes, my husband still hunts on the weekend, but it’s not every weekend anymore. He takes time to spend with me, and I make time to spend with him. We try to enjoy each other more, and put our best self forward. Our marriage, by no means, is perfect. We have our good days and our bad. But for now, the good outweighs the bad ten-fold, and I believe we are working towards a brighter future together.
***Check out the post called The Undated Wife here!***