Allow me to say something extremely controversial, men and women are completely different. Not going into that debate right now, but because this is my article and I get to, I’m just going to state that as a fact. They are.
Pre-marriage, James and I were having this conversation and trying to help each other out. We were trying our best to understand the planet that the other came from.
James, a grown man still appreciated monster trucks. I found that just embarrassing. He understood economics, knew how to clean guns and change the oil in the car, and laughed at farting jokes that I thought were highly inappropriate.
I, his extreme opposite, could gain control of a group of children and teach them something educational, could cut a pomegranate the right way, could change a diaper, and could write all day long on any topic.
(I know we fall into extremely traditional gender roles. I’m not saying this is the way it has to be. (It is just who we are.)
But as we sat discussing each other, oblivious in young love that it would ever be possible for us to ever get mad at the other person, I said something to James that was perhaps my best premarital advice, “When I get mad at you and say ‘Go away’ what I really mean is ‘Come here and give me a hug and make this better.'”
I can hear the married women shouting at me now, “Not me! That’s not what I mean!”
Sometimes, yes, we need space. But here is what I do disagree with.
I once heard a middle aged man bragging that he and his wife of several years had never ever gotten into an argument. Meant to be a bragging point, I immediately thought, “They must have a horrible marriage!”
Ya see, when two people blend their lives, someone is bound at some point to disagree with the other person. Did they not know how to face conflict? Was one of them afraid of the other’s controlling temper? Or maybe he was just lying?
I admit, I can get more upset with James than with anyone else in this whole world but during those times I still want to know that he loves me. I might be really really pissed about something but I want to hear, “I still want you. I still chose you. I still think you are beautiful. And we will work this out.”
So, discussing differences, James is logical and I am emotional. So, in the beginning when I was discussing gender roles. The responsibility of remembering this falls on my man.
When things get heated and I start yelling, what I really want to hear is, “Honey, I love you.”
Not fair, I know. Give me a hug.