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A never ending battle for equality ...

Posted by toomuchglass (My Page) on
Fri, Jun 18, 10 at 2:16

Since I'm a member of Garden Web ... I wanted to post here . After reading all the serious problems that are posted - I feel funny posting my problem. I know every reply will say - you are so lucky - why are you complaining . But Even Good things have their limit. I hope you can see my side of this .

OK .... here goes. My DH & I had families that are so alike ..... So old fashioned. The moms / wives were put on pedestals . My DH has the same old fashioned ideas. I can't open a door for myself , I can't get into the car without him opening the door , I can't walk on the outside of a sidewalk , and so much more piddly crap .
I hate this "proper" treatment. Maybe it was cool in the 50's ... but I want to treated as an equal and a friend.
I hate it to the point I have cried about it . When I tell my DH that I don't like it - he says "well I do" and that's that . Seems like my opinion doesn't count .
Sometimes even "polite" things can be a control issue.

I'm at a loss at what to do or say. I don't think there is an answer. Thanks for letting me vent . I feel better now .

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: A never ending battle for equality ...

I'm sorry toomuch. Everyone has different ideas about what is a problem or not... some women would give anything to have what you do, while others would feel stifled.

I had a boyfriend once who would "defend my honor" if another guy so much as looked at me twice. He also opened my car door and BUCKLED MY SEATBELT. Lol. Other girls LOVED that and were so envious. I was embarrassed.

It's a problem for you if it's a problem for you. :)

Maybe define other ways in which you would feel more "equal" or more like a "friend". Try to imagine what that would look like for you.

My DH doesn't let me walk on the outside of the sidewalk either. He opens my door for me. It can be obnoxious but I'd much prefer that to the alternative. Then again, if I get to the door first, I open it, and he lets me. The other day I caught myself wishing he stood up when I got up from the table after seeing that on TV. Then I remembered how silly I felt every time that happened to me in the past and how much I wished the guy wouldn't do that. Whoops!

My point is that I empathize. Polite can be controlling, and it often is. People get a lot of self-esteem, power, self-assurance from etiquette. I think your husband likely "feels like a man" when he does those things for you. It may not be so much a matter of treating you good as making himself feel worthy/manly.

RE: A never ending battle for equality ...

I think maybe you can compromise by agreeing for him to do certain things and asking him not to do others. i think the key is balance and moderation. It is nice to be treated this way only up to the point. tell him exactly what you don't want him to do. Like please hold my coat for me, but please don't open the car door. Like specific instructions. men respond better to specific instructions than general conversation.

RE: A never ending battle for equality ...

We are pretty bad at taking feminine hints, I'm told. Agree with finedreams about specifics. It can be done gently. Don't beat him up over it. Just ask for a little more flexibility in the deal. Maybe say you're feeling hovered-over or something like that. Almost a personal-space kind of thing.

Starting from a point of received (if resented) courtesy ain't bad, though!

RE: A never ending battle for equality ...

He sounds very controlling to me. And what is even more disturbing, he does not respect or care about your feelings. I am sorry you have to deal with this. It sounds very unpleasant.

RE: A never ending battle for equality ...

I think you might be feeling hemmed in, by a controlling husband. Sure this is not a desperate controlling agenda, but nevertheless, it does make you feel uncomfortable.

Perhaps you need to work out what YOU want him to do. Be very specific about that in your own mind, before you start making changes. Perhaps start on the small changes first. Like " I thank you for opening the door for me, but in future I would like to do it for myself".

I think men like "caring" for us, so don't step on his toes too much !

Personally, I think people should update there ideas about how things "should" be, just because "we have always done it like that" does not make it right. I have had to deal with that thinking myself, about issues with my son.

Good luck.

RE: A never ending battle for equality ...

Oh no it is serious problem. You should consider such a things before marriage. Any way, now it is too late. You not say to him to do what you want. But do what you want with reference of other jobs or times. I hope it may help you.

RE: A never ending battle for equality ...

Another pearl.

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