Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I Love You But Please Leave Me Alone

We like to keep it real on this blog. The title of this week’s post is nothing we made up...this is a scenario that happened since our last post.
This weekend was full of fun times!! Friday night was The Civil Wars concert, Saturday night was the Lecrae concert, and Sunday morning was an incredible service at The Church at Brook Hills. We came home from church and had some great together time over lunch and then it was time for the palette to be spread out over the couch for the routine Sunday afternoon nap. After three years of marriage, I can honestly say that the Sunday afternoon nap drill does not get me riled up like it used to. I find it awfully cozy to get out our favorite pillows, blankets, and so forth and nest down for awhile. I rested for a little bit and then got up for a grocery run while B still slept. When I returned, I found B reading and this continued while I made us a yummy, homemade dinner. We had a delicious dinner which must have recharged my batteries to be in a place where I was ready to chat!! 

Given Brandon’s post-dinner body language and lack of words, I should have put two and two together that he did not want to chat!! However, I was trying to draw words out of him. He finally communicated to me that he had a lot on his mind and he did not want to talk about it. He did not want to verbally process it because he had already internally processed it and did not want to go through it all again. The guy in him was fine to absorb it and keep it in. The girl in me wanted to get it out of him and have him express it. He eventually got off the couch and onto his knees and started praying. It was at this time that I realized there is a huge difference between relationships outside of marriage and the relationship you have with your spouse inside of marriage. With most people I know (friends and family), I am used to verbally processing through things. Inside of marriage, I am learning that there are times that my dear husband does not want to process things with words. It was at this time on Sunday that I learned that the best gift to Brandon at this time would be to let him be and stop prodding. Next time I will not wait for him to ask me to leave him alone for the time being, I will be able to tell from his body language and lack of words that he just needs some time alone. 

Closing statement from the man of the house: “You’ve probably heard of the book, Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. It talks a lot about men needing to retreat to their “cave” and this being hard for women to understand because they have such a strong desire to talk through the issues that they are in conflict over. It’s hard for Whit to understand at times that I am fine, just need some alone time. We grew stronger from this moment, as I reiterated how much I love her and there was nothing bothering me about the two of us - just had a lot on my mind in general. Knowing how differently we are wired is half the battle. Once we see eye-to-eye on that, the rest of our differences seem to make a little more sense!!” 

Here is a blurb from Wikipedia with more information about Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus. This put into words exactly what we experienced on Sunday evening!! Live and learn!  ...“Another major idea in John Gray’s books are the differences he believes operate in terms of the way the genders react under stress. He believes that many men withdraw until they find a solution to the problem. He refers to this as “retreating into their cave”. In some cases they may literally retreat, for example, to the garage or spend time with friends. The point of retreating is to take time to determine a solution. In these “caves”, men (writes Gray) are not necessarily focused on the problem at hand; many times this is a “time-out” of sorts to allow them to distance themselves from the problems so their brains can focus on something else. Gray posits that this allows them to revisit the problem later with a fresh perspective. 
Gray holds that this retreat into the cave has historically been hard for women to understand because when they are stressed their natural reaction is to talk about issues (even if talking does not solve the problem). This leads to a natural dynamic of the man retreating as the woman tries to grow closer”...

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