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Should i see or avoid?

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by hecate105, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    I am having problems dealing with relatives at the current time. The TMS work is keeping me really busy and it goes well as long as I am not pressured. My husband has been a rock and very understanding. He supports me in not seeing as much of family members at the moment as there are so many 'triggers; with them. BUT he has just agreed to two family get-togethers - one next sunday for which I am to cook and host and another the sunday after at the same families house. I find this too much and over the top. And I would of liked to have been asked beforehand. I do feel put upon! I pointed out to him that we were not seeing any other relatives (ie - mine!) except for a quick coffee- a handleable amount of time - not a whole afternoon of 5-7 people and all the aggro it brings. But he doesn't seem to think it a problem... Am I being unreasonable? Should I just suck it up and get cooking a vegan 3 course meal for 7? Or should I go and hide in the garden shed? (my preferred option!)
     
  2. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hello love,

    First let me say that I love your *name* hecate, deliciously mysterious and wise.
    Now to your issue. I subscribe to the maxim that 'an English man's home is his castle' and therefore a place to retreat from the world, pull up the drawbridge and relax. Luckily my better half feels the same way. Unsurprisingly then I don't think you are being unreasonable at all. I adore feeding and caring for people but that is a loving gesture that comes from within, to have it imposed is something else entirely. Hosting and cooking takes a lot of energy in itself so when it's compounded with a fundamental resentment and other triggers it becomes draining.

    Is there a possibility of eating out? I always, always suggest this when placed in a situation like yours. It takes the pressure off and enables a swift, smooth exit should you need it. If that's not viable then maybe you just need to say no. Healing from tms is very much about self-care on an ongoing basis so rather than simply thinking about how things should be during the immediate healing phase, it does well to have long range sight. Not easy or comfortable but unless we tackle such thorny issues they tend to recur. If it's of any consolation I have a slightly different but still sticky situation that I'm dealing with. It involves some diplomatic boundary setting and disappointments but I've reached the point where I'm on my own side. An essential part of the way back to wholeness is learning that selfless and selfish are not diametrically opposed but really perspectives and choices that are ever shifting.

    I hope you find a resolution that doesn't involve hiding in the shed.
     
    Ellen, tarala, yb44 and 1 other person like this.
  3. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    Thank you Plum. I am going to talk to hubby tonight about it. It may come down to him cooking and clearing up for them all - which might make him think next time! But I thought for marital harmony I might plea bargain and suggest that they come just for cup of tea and crumpets instead... We do take them out sometimes but as they are a large family with varying tastes it ends up fractious. Also there have been a few ding-dongs cos they don't like to pay anything themselves...
    I'm just popping out to put some cushions in the shed...
     
  4. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Sounds like one of those sticky situations that we wish would go away! Tea and crumpets sounds more than fair, and a nice compromise. Family can be a blessing or a curse, and sometimes a peppering of both. Whatever you do I hope it goes well, even if that means hiding (but as a gardener you have a fine excuse to repair to your shed).
     
    Ellen and hecate105 like this.
  5. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    Or even repair my shed...
    Thanks again Plum, you have cheered me up - I am now considering my relatives as condiments (the salty ones who make you wince or the peppery ones who bring on a sneezing fit...) Either way I am in a much better frame of mind than I was this morning!
     
  6. Anne Walker

    Anne Walker Beloved Grand Eagle

    I don't think you should suck it up and cook. I am sure your husband is well meaning but right now he is being insensitive. Who is he to say it is not a problem for you to cook? He should ask before committing you to something like this two weeks in a row! Everyone wants you to be happy, especially your husband, and yet it doesn't seem they are going to give you what you need without you putting your Foot down. My husband was driving 3 hours to pick up his son and he asked me where my keys were. He has his own car but he likes to drive mine better. I told him that I didn't mind him driving it, but I would prefer he asked. He was very taken aback and said some things that were not very kind. As he was driving away I realized how angry I was and I called him back and told him to drive his own car. He did and it was fine. I realized I never would have done that before. I would have just been mad and then maybe felt sorry for myself that my husband wasn't nicer. Maybe I would have even believed that it was my fault. Maybe it feels like we are being selfish and rude but really we are just learning how to pay attention to how we feel and take care of ourselves. We have experienced first hand what happens when we don't! Getting well has to be our priority and we should not feel guilty about it.
     
    Ellen and tarala like this.
  7. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, hecate. Your husband should not have made such plans without first asking you about them.
    Why not suggest just ordering some fried chicken delivered and have him make a big salad?
    You'd probably spend more money on food for a family gathering.

    And why not ask the guests to pitch in and each bring a dish? But let him organize that, not you.
     
  8. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hecate,
    I say put your husband in the shed and have tea and crumpets with your guests.

    But seriously, he should not be committing you to something without your consent. I'm not married now, but I know many couples who have an agreement that each spouse has to do the work associated with socializing with one's own family or friends.

    It's hard to set boundaries and limits when we haven't been doing it. But we know it has to be done to take care of ourselves, so we aren't "fuming in the shed" and making ourselves ill in the process.
     
    plum and Anne Walker like this.
  9. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    Thank you all for your wise comments. We had a full and frank marital discussion about it all last night! After the noise died down we realised we were both feeling pressured. His family expect to spend a lot of time together, so he is going to see more of them - without me. He is going to reorganise the meal to either him buying them a takeaway, or just tea & crumpets. My family do not expect so much attention - at which he breathed a sigh of relief...
    It also brought up how we misunderstand each other - I am convinced that he never listens to me - he is convinced I nag too much. So we have started a notebook and written down ' Neither shall make arrangements with family without first consulting the other' and BOTH signed it. We are going to do this with any decision made. Then we both know - it is a decision - not mindless chatter, and will have to stick by it. This should free up hours of time formerly spent bickering about 'who said what, and when'!!
     
    Ellen, tarala and Anne Walker like this.
  10. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    The air is clean and you are clear about what's happening this weekend - a fine result!
    Misunderstandings are so common in relationships that they seem to become invisible until we fall over them. It's a great feeling to dust things down and ring the changes because we do change and relationships are living things. If we don't honour that, we're stuffed! All the best for the weekend my dear.
     
    Ellen likes this.
  11. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hecate, it's great that you had that talk with your husband. This new understanding ought to help
    you a lot.

    It reminds me of an agreement my roommate and I had when we rented an apartment together.
    I was a reporter for the Chicago Tribune and he was starting masters program in astronomy at
    Northwestern University.

    He came up this this and I agreed to it: We would each respect the other's right to at times be irrational. This worked and we seldom exercised the right.

    A second agreement involved "a double veto." This meant if he wanted the apartment to be hot in winter and I didn't, I could open a window. (That was exercising my veto against his action). But he could not then close the window, because that would mean he was exercising a double veto on me).

    That also worked and believe it or not, we kept renewing the lease and lived together there for seven years
    without ever having an argument. He married and our agreement was that whoever married first and wanted to keep the apartment could. I moved out and rented a house up the block which I later bought and all was well.

    Maybe those two agreements could work in a marriage. What do you all think?
     
    NolaGal likes this.
  12. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    Don't let my husband know that HE could be irrational too! So far we've stuck to the old-fashioned and quaint idea that it's a womanly thing...
    I think the double veto is a great idea, it could stop situations escalating in the way they do when you live cheek by jowl!
     
  13. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Sharing the irrational bit with your husband could backfire on you.
    Better keep that one for yourself, but in moderation, I guess.

    The double veto might be a better one for married couples.

    My roommate and I got along well for seven years but that may have
    been because we led different lives and were apart a lot. We never shared
    friends. He spent lots of time at Northwestern University studying astronomy
    and I was busy as a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. We didn't even see each
    other much on weekends.

    I never married but know from my mother's experience that living together
    and being home together a lot can be stressful. Mom said when she retired she
    kept busy at home, cooking, cleaning, just relaxing. But when my stepfather
    also retired he was home all the time and "under foot."
     
  14. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Hecate. I was watching DOWNTON ABBEY again last night and
    Maggie Smith agreed with you about sometimes being irrational,
    saying, "I'm a woman. I can be as contrary as I choose."
     
  15. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    If Maggie Smith agrees with me - then I must be right!!!
     
  16. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Maggie knows. Isn't she wonderful?

    I'm re-watching DOWNTON and catching a lot of clever lines from her and others
    that I missed before.
     

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