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Discussion Starter #101
I was so tired. I am sure he felt like I was never going to consider him "enough." And to be honest, it was because he wasn't.

This is the tough thing... having someone tell you “well it’s never good enough for you” is a set up. Because “never” means if you respond that it’s not good enough they are a perpetual victim of your “bullying.” If you accept the premise they’ve won. So what really is going on?

Just gonna put this out there: part of the frustration is your dating persona vs your real persona. If you went out of your way to act unlike your normal self you’re misleading your partner. If you were a neat freak while dating and then turned into a slob, can you be honest and admit you’re a slob and you didn’t what to chase them away with your slovenliness? It’s not uncommon for people to diet, starve themselves; workout like crazy when dating but at their core just really aren’t fit or healthy eaters. They’ll quit eating right and working out because they’re over the finish line and can be who they really are. Or take a person that is sexually aggressive or overly romantic while dating than five years after marriage tells you they just aren’t that sexual and have never been.

I think some are responding to the wrong issue. It’s not that it’s never/not good enough...it’s that it’ll be never good enough because they were not presenting who they really are before marriage.


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I don’t really think he presented himself as different when we were dating. I think that we both just bought into the idea that as the woman of the relationship I was supposed to be doing the emotional labor in the relationship. I didn’t realize that eventually I would resent doing all that extra work. I was the classic enabler, and when I finally stopped enabling (because 1. Didn’t want to enable and 2. Just couldn’t do it anymore) he wasn’t able to or didn’t want to fill in the gap.
 

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I don’t really think he presented himself as different when we were dating. I think that we both just bought into the idea that as the woman of the relationship I was supposed to be doing the emotional labor in the relationship. I didn’t realize that eventually I would resent doing all that extra work. I was the classic enabler, and when I finally stopped enabling (because 1. Didn’t want to enable and 2. Just couldn’t do it anymore) he wasn’t able to or didn’t want to fill in the gap.
Emotional labour can mean a few things.
In France, in means taking on responsibility for getting things done. In the UK, it means if she did nothing but feels hard working. In the USA, it can mean either or taking primary responsibility for the emotional well being.
It always makes these conversations difficult, as all the experiences will differ. I am from the UK, when I saw women talk about "emotional labour", I took it to mean lazy and pround of it. It was an eye opener to travel.
 

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Avoidance may indeed be a legitimate posture, if the guy knows that even herculean effort on his part will not result in approval, or that the needed change is not within his realm of achievement. He is a 100-grand guy, and his wife only gives accolades to megabuck guys. He is a "plan b beta provider" and her attentions are only given to alphas.
Yes, it is all circumstancial. It is also rarely a useful phrase.
If the man is responsible for her happiness, then it makes sense if she is unhappy. He cannot force her to be happy after all.
But, it can end up being used by the man when he insists that them being happy is her responsibility.
 

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Emotional labour can mean a few things.
In France, in means taking on responsibility for getting things done. In the UK, it means if she did nothing but feels hard working. In the USA, it can mean either or taking primary responsibility for the emotional well being.
It always makes these conversations difficult, as all the experiences will differ. I am from the UK, when I saw women talk about "emotional labour", I took it to mean lazy and pround of it. It was an eye opener to travel.

For me it means mostly taking on responsibility for getting things done, but I also took on primary responsibility for the emotional well being of our relationship. Definitely wasn’t / am not lazy, and I would never be proud of it. And we are from the US.
 

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For me it means mostly taking on responsibility for getting things done, but I also took on primary responsibility for the emotional well being of our relationship. Definitely wasn’t / am not lazy, and I would never be proud of it. And we are from the US.
I remember moving to Belgium and when women there spoke of coming home from work to be in charge of the housework, I assumed it was in the same way that British women did. But, they were actually physically doing it and taking the responsibility. When the "Why Didn't you Ask" cartoon was doing the rounds, it was hard to explain the difference in situation between women in France/Belgium and the UK.

My current wife described herself as an empath, and it was an immediate red flag! It turns out that rather than being so wrapped up in her own feelings that she was oblivious to other peoples's she was actually very aware of other peoples' feeling.

There terms get abused, that I can get over touchy! Sorry!
 

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I am seeing a lot of different definitions of "emotional labor". And I think it's a bit of misnomer. It's not quite emotional, but instead, that being non-stop planning, negotiating, and scheduling. Sure my ex would clean up. But only when asked and often he "forgot" and needed to be reminded. This of course was interpreted as nagging. But it was a setup. I learned asking nicely and then letting him get to it in his time, meant that it never got done. In fact, my only behavior that was rewarded was getting angry with him. And quite frankly it was exhausting. I was so tired. I am sure he felt like I was never going to consider him "enough." And to be honest, it was because he wasn't.

Because yeah, he might have taken out the trash...when I asked him...5 times.. as the trash is overflowing and I am cleaning the kitchen while he reads his comics. Yeah, I think I worked harder than him.
I think it is a worthless term and possibly dangerous.

I am a middle-aged UK man and when I read this, I am not sure how to read it. But, I have travelled and seen how things are different between nations and generations. In the UK, women would always say what you wrote, in Belgium they would do the same and in Scandinavia, they would be very varied. My shock in Belgium was that women really did take the responsibilities for domestic matters, even if they both worked. Meanwhile, my Danish girlfriend had to be warned not to say that I was not acting like a lazy tyrant, and there is not the same culture of lying about it.

Having a partner like that is exhausting. That is emotional labour to my mind. Equally, going through treating traumatised people, or making brutal decisions is the same.

There is also the comparison to children with homework. One does it straight away on Friday, and enjoys the weekend, the second does not do it, has it not done all weekend and then has it not done on Monday. My personal experience with "emotional labor" is that is refers to the second.

I was seeing a US woman once who said "When I was young I thought I was clean and tidy, then I left for college and found out my Mum was clean and tidy". I was actually impressed, as this was a rejection of the common concept of emotional labor and accepting responsibility instead.
 

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I think part of the resentment comes from the statement “well I’ve always been like this” or “you just have to accept me for who I am”

OK but let’s be honest... everyone spends emotional capital hiding or downplaying their baggage when dating and it applies to both sexes. And it’s incredibly dishonest to make efforts to hide it and then once married say “we’ll that’s how I am and always have been.” Dating... blowjobs all the time... get married...that’s disgusting and I only did it because we were dating. How could you not be a little resentful? My wife hid the emotional dumpster fire that her family was and I have just have to accept that last how she is but have to address issues from my past.

Let’s be honest if a guy hid a porn addiction he can’t later say “well you have to accept I like porn.” Same for “audition sex” knowing that she has sex issues from my her past and even broke up with other guys because of them.

My point is it’s much more acceptable for a woman to hide things during courtship and say “that’s how I am” than it is for a man. She’s not expected to address that stuff but he is.


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I don't agree with your assessment that it's "much more acceptable" for a woman to hide her flaws during courtship and then get a free pass as to working on them post marriage-- all the while continually criticizing her husband and demanding change and perfection. It's only acceptable if a man LETS HER get away with this!

Men, why are you letting women get away with crap like that? Why are you letting these women of poor character dictate your relationship to this degree?

Are you that scared of losing the relationship, or of rocking the boat that you accept such an unhappy and sub par relationship partner and dynamic?

I just don't get it.
 

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In marriage its also very helpful to have God involved, because when I pray about being a better wife, God answers and sometimes challenges me on things that I should or shouldn't be doing. Not comfortable for me at all sometimes, but His aim is to keep marriages strong and after all I did ask.:surprise:
What has God challeneged you to do? what were the words he used to communicate that to you?
 

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I don't agree with your assessment that it's "much more acceptable" for a woman to hide her flaws during courtship and then get a free pass as to working on them post marriage-- all the while continually criticizing her husband and demanding change and perfection. It's only acceptable if a man LETS HER get away with this!

Men, why are you letting women get away with crap like that? Why are you letting these women of poor character dictate your relationship to this degree?

Are you that scared of losing the relationship, or of rocking the boat that you accept such an unhappy and sub par relationship partner and dynamic?

I just don't get it.
QFT.

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