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First, a little background: Married almost four years, no children. My wife and I are a couple of months out of D-Day(I had an EA). Since then, things between us have been understandably bad and tense. She asked me to not sleep at the apartment, etc... but we are making some small progress towards reconciliation (full story here)

Last night, we had a long conversation that touched on a variety of our marital issues, including communication and selfishness. One of the things we talked about had to do with how we saw our roles as married partners. In short, as she felt that she has always put me at the center of her life, while I had her on the periphery of my world. To a great extent, unfortunately, she's right.

One example of that has to do with dishes that I kept after we got married. We wound up getting dishware that was "ours", but despite her best attempts, I still refused to let go of the old, mismatched, chipped dishes that I had from prior lives. This is just one small example, but I held onto those dishes because in the back of my mind I thought that I'd have a need for them again, when in reality, we now have more than enough dishes of our own and don't even use the ones I had. I've never used them since we started getting our own dishware, either. The problem is that she saw gettng rid of the old dishes and bringing in new ones as making room for our future and in my mind, they were my dishes and why should I get rid of them. I was just holding onto "stuff".

It's not really about the dishes themselves, but the past that they represented to me, along with a little bit of insecurity about letting go of some portion of my life that those dishes represented. In reality, I look at those dishes now and will finalliy give them away because there's nothing special about them and I'm ready to let them go.

The issue behind all of this was one of expectations. In our conversation last night, she said that she had hoped that I would have said, "You know what, we have our own dishes, I don't really need these, so let me make room for something else". By continuing to resist getting rid of the dishes, my wife feels like this is one more thing that I have done to make her feel of less importance in my life. There are other things, but this is the clearest example that I can give.

I have to be clear that of course she hasn't asked me to dispose of everything from my past, just those things that have no real use for us and are only taking up space, gathering dust, and have no relevance to either of us.

Having said all of that, I'm wondering what others' experiences have been with similar issues about possesions. Have you or your spouse/partner held onto objects or other things from the past that mean little in your new life together and no longer have real relevance for you, but you're still clinging to them with a death grip? What impact has it had on your relationship or how you see your partner and vice-versa? How have you dealt with it?
 

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Not really. When hubs moved in (before he was hubs) he cleaned out all his useless shet and I did the same. We kept some things that will be fun for our kids to look at someday, but the majority of stuff from our prior lives is gone.
 

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I don't know, bud. Before I got married, I had an old futon in my living room, a ratchety old table, two chairs, a matress on the floor, a fridge full of beer, and one big a$$ honking audio video system.

After that, I couldn't find enough space in my house to put all those little candle holders and frilly wall hangings that I seemed to "inherit" as part of marriage.

I did get to keep my AV system, though. Lol.
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