I sat down to write something for my wedding anniversary thinking I’d be writing a testament to the amazing relationship and strong marriage I think Hubster and I have. As the words poured out of me, I found myself writing a very different sort of post, one that actually shocked and unsettled me with the brutality of the pain I was clearly feeling as I wrote it so much so, I had to put it to one side. I then had no choice but to come back to it when one of my blogging besties Modern Dad Pages asked me to write something about relationships.
The things is, most people will read this and think What on earth is she going on about? This guy is amazing! (And yes my husband is amazing in so many ways, as I explained in the speech I ‘almost wrote’ for his 50th birthday .) But as you know, our problems (perceived or real) and our truths are personal to us and we never know what goes on behind closed doors.
My husband knows I’ve written this post and gave me his blessing to be as honest as I wanted (which again shows what a great human being he actually is). There are things I’ve not mentioned because there is only so much dirty laundry I’m willing to wash in public but this is still the hardest thing I’ve written to date and I can’t say that I’m that comfortable doing it. So here is:
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you have such an easygoing manner towards anyone who meets you and you were always so laid back…but when one of our kids just drops some food at mealtime or a spills a drink at a restaurant, you literally freak and you have become angry and serious enough for the both of us (when I thought I’d cornered that market pretty well myself).
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you are so chatty and open with your friends…but when I try to make conversation, I’m met with disinterest from a man who’s mentally left the building before I’ve even finished (started?) my sentence.
Dear Hubster I want to grow old with you because your cuddles are the best…but how do I cuddle a man who looks inconvenienced at having to budge up on the sofa when I sit next to him and who doesn’t think to just slip an arm round me when I’m washing the dishes?
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you were my buddy who was always interested in what I had to say and with whom I’d close down the restaurants in Paris and London chatting til the early hours. We’d look over at the middle aged couples tired of life, tired of each other and we promised one another we’d never be like them and we’d keep the conversation going year after year.…but I’m honestly drained after years of silent evenings on the sofa or being cut off when I speak.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you were the eager lover who couldn’t get enough of me no matter what time of day it was, no matter where we were or whether we needed to be somewhere…but now, even though you say you still find me sexy and hot, when I give you the bedroom eyes, your brain fast forwards to how much you have to do and you suggest we ‘schedule it for later’. And later hardly ever comes…
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because I want to share my thoughts and experiences and interests with you…but when you snapped at your 5 year old who was just trying to show you a picture she’d drawn, what hope is there for me?
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because I chose you as my life partner…but how do you get through a life with someone when sometimes it’s just hard to get through a day without arguing about the stupidest things?
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you are the man who goes to four different card shops to find a Valentine (and anniversary) card with the exact message he wanted to say…but who has so much difficulty just finding the romance in the simplest of daily transactions as man and wife even when the opportunity is staring him in the face!
Dear Hubster I want to grow old with you because I love you…but there are days when I ask myself if I actually do or whether love is even enough to see us through.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because we made three amazing kids together and I know you love them like mad and see little point in even being home if your wife and kids aren’t around…but you never show any interest when I tell you about something they’ve done or said and I hurt waiting for you to show interest in teaching them a sport or spending individual time with them.
Dear Hubster I want to grow old with you because you are so wonderfully different from anyone I’ve ever met…but we’re both so very different it can be hard to just get on.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you are the most domesticated hands-on partner anyone could hope for…but maybe in between stacking the dishwasher, emptying the bins and doing the school run, the old you and me disappeared?
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you used to make me laugh endlessly…but now you rarely find my jokes funny and I don’t get yours anymore on the rare occasion you clown around.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because I thought you’d be the most gentle warm laid back father…but your yelling, lack of patience, inability to understand when they need sympathy or terms of endearment kills me.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because I have NO bloody right to complain about a man who does the kids’ packed lunches every morning, gets bedding and floors clean and has food in the fridge for when I return from a trip abroad with the kids (and checks us in online without being asked)…but I just wish that man could show his wife and kids some emotion instead of always being so practical.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you have told me so much that you love me and you’re trying to take on board how I feel…but you and I both know there’ll be another blow out, I’ll retreat inside my shell and cry endlessly in private, you’ll apologise and on and on it will go.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because mere words cannot describe the appreciation and respect I have for how hard you work to give your family a home and a life (never pressuring me to go back to work after I had the babies)…but you can’t run an entire marriage on that alone and I need to respect you as a friend and lover too and I can’t rebuild that on my own Baby.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because that’s what friends do
..but so much of the time I feel like we’re just housemates who raise three kids together.
Dear Hubster, I want to grow old with you because you are the wonderful man who insists we go out to celebrate our anniversary...but don’t you wonder what we’d be celebrating? I am feeling depressed and terrified at the thought of an evening of awkward silence or desperately trying to find things to talk about with you apart from bloody work.
Dear Hubster I want to grow old with you because you are gentleman. Thank you for being that gentleman and listening.
I have a hubby who goes above and beyond in so many ways, a hubby who isn’t possessive, who doesn’t ‘expect’ things from me and who gives me space to be me. I also have a hubby who gives me THE most wonderful anniversary and Valentines cards with heartfelt messages he has really given thought to writing when half the time, I don’t get round to getting him one or I find crappy ones! It takes two people in a relationship, I have plenty of faults and frankly marriage takes constant work and care. The Disney straight forward happy-ever-after fairytale does not exist. I think, in the end, each couple has to create their own fairytale. My hubby is aware of and really wants to address his emotional attentiveness and other shortcomings. In the meantime, I’ll be having a good think about addressing my own…