T Nation

Men and Women, Women and Men

I think people focus too much on the “easy” connections such as liking the same music or hobbies instead of the deeper things like how people see the world. I appreciate it’s easier to find people who also like One Direction (I’m joking, calm down), than people who see the world through a similar lens to you, but interests change. In general, the way people look at the world doesn’t really change drastically.

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Absolutely. I like being on the same wavelength. My fiance will die on a hill way before I would, but 9 times out of 10, I’m still on the same hill.

Our biggest core… philosophical difference I guess… is she has a strong sense of justice, where I have a strong desire to understand why someone feels the way the do, or acts the way they do. The two feed well off eachother in our case, while not being the same. At the end of the day though, the weaknesses that come with our views tend to be balanced out by the other, and I believe that’s probably the most important aspect of our relationship.

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If there is a toxic parent - or child or sibling - I completely honor that people may need to cut ties. But filial devotion to non-abusive parents is, generally speaking, a glimpse at a person’s value system.

Thank you, but it was actually not a big deal. Thyroid cancer, which is almost always curable. My doctor explained “if you’re going to have cancer, this is the kind of cancer you want to have,” and he was right. It was scary, but in practical terms mostly a hassle because of doctor’s appointments and babies.

Agree with both of these. I want someone like me in the important ways; the details are much less important. I want someone who is mostly chill but can get passionate and outraged; someone with a bit of a wild streak, at least relative to our peers; someone who can laugh at himself and at me without being mean; someone who exhibits integrity and likes physical challenge. Beyond that things are to-may-to/to-mah-to and make no real difference.

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Gender roles: I’m really pleased that I was born when I was. It’s very hard for me to imagine having no control over my destiny. On the other hand, the more restrictive, traditional ways that preceded me would have made changes to the way I was raised which may have made unnecessary some of the self-inflicted pain I had to deal with. Or, could have made it my permanent state.

I’m inclined to think that I’d probably thrive under almost any socio-political system because I’m cheery and a good worker. But who knows. I just feel really lucky to be living now.

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While freedom is ALWAYS infinitely more important. I bet there was a certain charm to just not having to worry about… well… financial shit. As if it just wasn’t anything worth considering in your role. Dont get me wrong, “just being the wife” is a fucking reprehensible role in my eyes, but I’m sure it had a few merits.

No way in hell my fiance is just sitting around the house until/if I can afford everything we both desire with ease. These are not the times lol.

Oooo I like questions like these.

Begin poetic word vomit

I like the dynamic my husband and I have. It’s even. It’s fair. I think of us as a water color painting. How the pigments bleed into the canvass, and become one beautiful work of art.

My husband and I are of different ethnicities, and for the most part, cultures. Even both having been born in America, we still came from different backgrounds. The start of our relationship was just dealing with outside racism. From our families, and from random people. I think sometimes, outside stressors can shift perspectives of certain relationships, to where stuff like who does what in the house, is the least of either partners concerns. If I come home and shit hasn’t been done I really don’t give a damn, most times. If my husband comes home and I haven’t done shit, he doesn’t make a big deal of it most times. If either of us is bothered by it, we will talk about it right then and there, and proceed forward. We both just help eachother with financial stuff, and split everything 50/50. Sometimes someone has more, sometimes someone has less. If we see a need, we just fill it. We don’t play the one-up game, or the “have the last word” game either.

We don’t really care what it is. If one of us can fix it, that’s all we care about. We’re just happy to be safe, and secure with eachother, and know that we made it through all the hard stuff…together, and for the better.

We don’t really have the exact same mutual interests, but we both are home bodies, and will plan outdoor stuff just so we get a bit of outside stimulation for the both of us. Any other time we usually are bonding over food, or the art of conversation.

When I was younger, I alway envisioned being married to a popular mold of what society deems to be typical traits of a man. But then I got married at 22, to someone who just…operated on the same frequency as I did. We both came from being the black sheeps of our families. But instead of letting all our bad stuff feed off of eachother, we just let all the good take over.

My husband can defend me, as he’s done on a few occasions. I too have defended my husband, when I felt like his space, or person was being disrespected. But aside from those few occasions, we just stay to ourselves. We’re not trying to be this “Alpha Couple” or whatever. Because I find that image, something that’s tiring to keep up with.

We don’t have kids yet, and we aren’t rushing to have any. If we end up not wanting any, then so be it. If we do, then we do.

Currently I am dealing with a few mental health issues, but I love that my husband doesn’t boil me down to just that. He doesn’t focus solely on that. He does whatever he can to help me when I ask for it, and he also doesn’t try to rush me to get better. Other than that he carries on in our relationship just viewing me as he always has: His wife, and his other half.

We’ve been together since we were 18, married since we were 22. We’re both 24 now, and I think above all else, we get to watch eachother grow up, and grow into ourselves. We get to watch eachother change, and show different aspects our individuality, but we also get to see our unity strengthen.

We have an unspoken rule of NEVER ever letting the other go to bed under any type of mental or emotional distress that was caused by either of our actions or words.

Edit: I also wanted to add, that at the end of the day, I just do my best to make sure I get a laugh out of my husband. If I can hear that goofy laugh, I’ll be a-okay.

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Seems like this has come up over and over again.

Safe with each other…seems like that’s something people are trying to describe, too. It’s nice. I remember asking a group of friends over drinks if any of them ever got the feeling that they wanted to go home, but didn’t know where “home” was to go there. I was surprised it resonated with others - I’ve moved a lot and lost my mother and so on, so I have specific damage around “home.” Anyway, I mentioned feeling this way once to my husband when we were living together but not married, and he asked “why can’t I be your home?” And, well…because we weren’t committed at that level. We were still “trying things on,” from my perspective. That’s been a long time ago now and he absolutely IS my home. I never get that feeling anymore.

I don’t know if it matters about being introverted, because I’m a woman of many words, and I need space, too. I wonder if this is another element of happy relationships sort of across the board.

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My biggest turn off in life is people who take themselves too seriously.

Good and fair question! At first I was going to say:

I of course agree with usmc on this, but now that I re-read the original post, rather than the more general answer of “it depends, everyone needs to consider our own strengths and weaknesses” you want specifics of how we actually want things in our own lives.

If I have interpreted correctly, here goes:

This is about how my wife and I do it. She does more household cleaning, I do more household “cut the lawn and rake the leaves” type stuff, cooking (including dishes) is about even, laundry is about even. We split child-rearing stuff pretty evenly; I’m at the office Mon-Fri on a regular daily schedule but home all day Sat and Sunday, she works M-W-F and then has rehearsals on nights and weekends so things end up more-or-less evenly split there. We never really had to sit down and negotiate this stuff, it all settled pretty organically. We do have a standing policy that if we’re both at home, she changes the poopy diapers; this comes with a later agreement that once our kids are old enough that they are sick to their stomach, vomit cleanup will be my duty.

Oh, I also generally handle the majority of household finances (making sure we’ve paid the mortgage, insurance, utility bills, etc). She pays our nanny for child care. This is more out of convenience and “playing to our strengths” than any other reason.

This works for us. Of course we also were attracted to one another in the first place for more superficial reasons (met at yoga class, shared common interests related to fitness, food, booze, found one another physically attractive and intellectually stimulating) but for each of us making the decision about a long-haul relationship also required compatibility on the aforementioned stuff about how we wanted to live.

Other men are free to have different perspectives in what they want from a female partner; the key is having an appropriate match between your expectations and your partner’s expectations on such things. If you want a stay at home mom who will do all the cooking and cleaning, but stay out of your way in running the family finances - that’s fine, as long as you find a woman who wants that life! But we (men) shouldn’t blame women (collectively or individually) for not wanting that.

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I find answering the question more specifically difficult. I think life is too dynamic for me to say _________ (insert traits) is ideal. Would having a stay at home wife that did all of the cooking and cleaning and most of the childcare stuff be great? I imagine it would be pretty great. Is having a wife with her own career and ambitions great? Ya, for sure. Would I prefer the former over the later? I have no idea. Both have their drawbacks and both require the woman to have a certain personality as far as I can tell. My wife would blow a gasket if her role was the housekeeper, but I’ve met plenty of woman that prefer being a stay at home to being a professional. So, it’s hard for me to really answer the question.

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For what it’s worth, I personally would hate this. I know people who took this approach and who regret to this day not being more involved in their children’s life growing up.

I didn’t really mean not being involved with the kids. I’m more so talking about packing the lunches, dropping them off at daycare / school, that sort of stuff with dad time being activities, throwing the baseball, etc… The day’s I’m not with my boys (business trips for example) are really weird.

My tone was probably more preachy than I meant it to be. It was just a comment on how some people, including myself to an extent, see things.

But yeah, extended time away from the kids is really weird.

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In my case, I knew flat out I couldn’t provide my kid with what a decent childcare could. Specifically, social interactions with other children and a constant focus on learning and growing.

It sucked being away, but I’d feel selfish compromising their growth for my own “Cat’s in the Cradle” sorta feeling.

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I think maybe I wasn’t very clear on exactly what I meant, reading your post and rereading @usmccds423 post.

I guess I treat the childcare in a very similar way to household chores. If I’m there to do it, I’ll do it. My dad wouldn’t, and didn’t do that because he saw it as my mothers job. If they need lunch boxes packing or dropping off at nursery, I’ll do it if I’m there. Me and my better half split the childcare roughly fairly, not necessarily evenly.

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It made sense, I just wanted to clarify too. We split the childcare about the same as you. It’s more about who has the time do x than anything else. If I’m up and ready I’ll pack lunches and vice versa. That’s true for mos things; getting them ready, feeding them, etc… We tag team bed-time, I do most of the drop off / pickup and their extra dishes, she does the insane amount of laundry they produce. It works out.

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That sounds almost exactly like our split to be honest.

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My issue is that I was reading childcare as a noun rather than a verb. Maybe just a stateside thing, but Childcare is a location that you can drop children off at to be supervised. Daycare would be another term.

I meant it as a term for the things you do to take care of your child, including taking them to nursery (childcare), etc. Maybe a better term would have done the job.

We also have “childcare” as a noun, but it’s a bit more specific.

Nah, I’m sure it made sense in the context. I joined late in the convo, posting in between sets, haha.

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