It is unavoidable, if you want to be around other humans. It is how conflict is handled that separates the emotionally intelligent from the emotionally disabled. I’ve been on the emotionally disabled side for most of my life and am steadily moving into the emotionally intelligent side.
Like anyone else, I have relationship fears and sometimes those fears simmer for too long (my fault) and then boil over suddenly. That is what happened to me last night.
New guy and I said we’d meet for dinner last night. We’ve been texting about it since Saturday, but weren’t sure if it would be a lunch date or dinner date. Sunday we decided it would be a dinner date, but did not set a time and pick a place. As I mentioned yesterday, he’s not caught up on instant communication like many of us are. He got busy with some yard chores and didn’t text me until almost 7 pm, as I was eating my dinner at home.
We texted, but it was apparent that we were both grumpy. Him from yard work and me from waiting. Although it wasn’t ugly, it was conflict.
Bottom line is that I’m very pleased with the way he handled it. When it became apparent that we were both grumpy and texting was not helping, he called. That was pretty amazing, especially considering we’ve only been dating for a week and a half. At that rate it would have been easy for many men to just write me off as a crazy bitch! Too much work. Too many expectations.
But he didn’t, and I’m happy for that!
I just need to get this off my chest. I work in an office where we only have 1/2 height walls with no wall towards the aisle. Most people sit with the backs of their monitors facing the aisle – so they’re looking out into the aisle.
Why is this psychologically damaging? It is a pose that looks inviting to the casual observer. It is deceiving and has tricked me on more than one occasion.
You have to look for the casual signs that someone is not available for a quick conversation. People have headsets when on the phone, but sometimes you can’t tell if they have a headset on. Some people hang a sign on their monitor to let people know they’re on the phone. Some of those people just leave their sign on ALL the time – which makes it blend into the environment or less reliable. One person even has a sign up 100% of the time that says “DO NOT DISTURB.” Yes, it is in all caps.
I’ve been thinking about this concept a lot lately – “work it out.” No one wants to give up. No one wants to fail.
How does that relate to special relationships, like marriage?
Here’s some of my thoughts on how that affects love relationships:
- We stay in broken relationships too long because we think we can fix things.
- We stay miserable because we believe we can just try harder to be more compatible with our mate.
- We stay stressed and tense because we’re trying to be something that we’re not, so that we can “work it out” with our mate.
- If we’re not miserable, we know that we are not really “well” because we’re not exactly true to ourselves, in the name of “working it out.”
Popular belief tells us that we can work it out. The married couple who made it through some difficult times only to be so much better than before tell us that we can. Our parents who remained married, even though they don’t get along, tell us that we can. Our spouses who don’t want us to leave (this was me) tell us that we can.
I don’t know anymore. I think that it is great if couples CAN work it out, and maybe some give up too easily. But I know that I did everything I possibly could to work it out. Now I’m feeling relieved that I no longer need to work on something that is causing me some deep down stress and anxiety.