Wednesday, October 18, 2006

To Share or Not To Share {Part 1}

Sitting together on the sofa last night my husband asked me an unexpected question.

‘How much do you think one should share in a marriage?

‘What do you mean?’ was my puzzled reply.

‘How much information should a husband/wife share in terms of what they are thinking or feeling?’ he expanded.

Knowing that this was leading somewhere interesting I sat up and paid more attention.

‘I would say everything. I think in marriage a husband/wife should share every area of their lives. There should be no secrets.’ (I felt a bit of a guilty prang when I said this but I’ll go into that later.) ‘But give me a specific example.’ I pressed.

‘For example,’ he ventured, ‘would you want to know if I was lusting after another woman?’

Talk about a question out of the blue! But I kept my composure.

‘Yeah, I guess so.’ I said a little uncertain. ‘Why? Are you lusting after someone else?’ I asked half jokingly.

‘No, of course not.’

‘But do you ever look at other women and think hmm….’

‘I would be lying if I said I didn’t, that’s just the way men are. But I don't take it any further than that. It’s how far you take it that matters.’

At the end of the conversation I was full of mixed feelings.

On the one hand I was happy my husband was being honest with me about such a sensitive subject but on the other hand it was one of those conversations that make you go Ummm.

I am one of those women that trusts her husband explicitly (I know some of you may be saying ‘more fool you’) but I also know that if I let things slide I could very easily be walking on thin ice.

You see, I do let things slide sometimes and I take my relationship with my husband very much for granted. I have bought into the idea that nothing can come between us. On the one hand it’s a good thing but on the other it’s an unrealistic place to be as it makes me complacent. I just assume that he will always be there and will only ever have eyes for me. But this isn’t always so, is it?

The truth is men do look at other women. It’s a fact of life and as much as we (women) hate this idea, it IS up to us to keep them interested (except of course you have done some very serious Okpor (juju) for him in which case he will never stray *smile*). Also it’s like marriage or a long term relationship changes us.

When we first start dating our partners we pull out all the stops. We do our hair, nails, go down the gym, visit the hairdressers once a week and generally make an effort to look stunning for them. And then we get married or settled in the relationship and everything just goes out the window. You know what I am talking about – we put on weight (sometimes), slop around the house with unkempt hair, jogging bottoms and stretched out t-shirts and expect our husbands/partners to salivate when they see us. And if there are kids on the scene, they are the ones who tend to get the blame for the way we look. Then we wonder why when our partners’ eyes begin to rove.

(Now I do know that some men are serial cheaters; those are not the ones I am referring to here.)

But I’ll tell you what gets me kick started into paying more attention to my relationship again - when I hear about a friend whose husband has strayed! It’s like the thought of it happening to me jump starts me into making a change. I become more attentive, I make more of an effort with the way I look, I start to notice him again (it’s true after being in a relationship for a long while; we tend not to ‘notice’ our partners). But then as the weeks go by, I calm down and stop making an effort. Why? Perhaps its human nature or perhaps I just hit my comfort zone again. I dunno.

To be continued…

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Anonymous songreach said...

hmmmm...interesting post

I'll take pure transparency anyday...even when it stings...i think....

I also believe that "looking good" should be a responsibilty of both parties..not a burden for the woman alone.

The truth is, one never knows what would make a second party stray...regardless of how "put together" their marriage looks.

Therefore we can only put in our best, work hard as a team (husband and wife both), communicate, and communicate some more + LOADS of prayers on top. God help us!

3:12 am  
Blogger Pilgrimage to Self said...

You beat me to it, I was going to address the responsibility of the man in the continuing post. But yes, I totally agree with you.

8:15 am  
Blogger Justme said...

I really enjoy reading ur blog! Pls dont stop posting.

9:38 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what about women who check men out?
they also exist what do we think about it.

I always hear about the men (granted they are probably more common) but i do think that there are also women who look at men and think Hmm...

5:59 pm  
Blogger Pilgrimage to Self said...

@anonymous: There are women like that, aren't there? Lots actually. Perhaps you may want to handle this angle on your blog?

7:34 am  
Anonymous Ngozi said...

women look at other men too...but i have yet to see a man who would react the way we women do when we suspect our man's mind might be wandering.

no guy i know has actually made the effort to polish themselves up.

it angers me.

8:26 pm  

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