NWR - week-long fight - need advice

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Guest
NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:05 PM

FH and I have been arguing for the majority of this week, and I just need some perspective from people who don't know either of us. 

So I'm very involved with Relay For Life (fundraiser for The American Cancer Society) - I have chaired the event for the past two years, and will be on the planning committee next year when I step down as chair (FH agreed to this).  Well, we were talking about what I will be doing on the committee earlier this week, and he got upset about how much responsibility I'll have, the fact that I will continue to have monthly meetings, etc.  I got offended because he got upset.  I mean, this is VERY important to me, as I have known so many people to either have cancer or die from cancer - I was just at a funeral last week for my friend's husband that died from lung cancer at 52 years old (never smoked).  I would think that something so important to me would be important to him too, or that he would at least support me in my efforts.  But he's really fighting me tooth and nail on this, to the point it makes me want to quit the committee. 

I just don't know what to do.  I'm exhausted from arguing.  Any thoughts or suggestions?


Valerie

Wedding Date:  September 27, 2008

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krista210 Posts : 450 Registered: 7/14/07
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:18 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

Does he think that you wont have any time for him? Or does he see that you are being taken advantage of as that usually happens in committees where one person ends up doing all the work. Maybe that is you?

If he just wants to spend more time with you, then maybe the two of you can have a special night every week just for you two. I think that there must be something else going on other than he "just doesnt want you to be on the committee". I hope the two of you can talk more and you can figure out the real reason why he is upset!


DaisypathWedding Ticker

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UltimatePink Posts : 367 Registered: 10/15/07
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:21 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

So, from what you said, FI is upset because of how much responsibility you have. Is that because it takes up all your time and you have none for him? Do you have kids and he's upset you don't spend time with the kids? Is he upset that you do all the work and no one else does? What exactly is he upset about?

Why I ask is that I am similar to you. I have 4 boards of organizations that I serve on. I am very passionate about every single one of them. Yes, I do have to devote a certain amount of time to them, attend events and so forth. My FI knows very well that I love what I do and he fully supports me, by attending events with me and becoming involved in a few of those organizations. It's something I made clear when I accept these positions to him is that I want to do these things and they are very important to me. But I also emphasize that our relationship is important also. Maybe I am lucky in the sense that FI doesn't make me choose.

I typically stand my ground for things I am passionate about and serving for a fundraiser would count. FI should feel lucky enough he doesn't have cancer and you are out there trying to raise funds.


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EveT2007 Posts : 1,949 Registered: 8/31/06
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:22 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

Hi, FMrsH --  First of all, I really commend you for your dedication and compassion for all those whose lives have been touched by cancer (which is practically everyone in this day & age).

Reading your post, I am not exactly sure what your FH is unhappy about.  Has he explained his viewpoint to you?  Is it that he'd object to your being involved in any volunteer activity that would take time & energy away from him?  Or does he feel threatened by the idea that you could be collaborating on the committee with other men who might get a crush on you?  Or does he have a specific issue against Relay for Life? 

I'm not necessarily asking you to spill personal information here, but if you and your FH are clear on why he objects to your participation, and why you feel strongly about participating, then you are at least in the good position of communicating your values and priorities.  If, OTOH, it's just a disorganized week of fighting without each understanding where the other person is coming from, then your chances of resolving it are slim.

I know there are some women who would say that no husband (much less a FH) has the right to tell his wife what committee she can or can't be on.  This is generally viewed as controlling behavior and a throwback to the days when wives were treated as property.  However, in real life, couples do try to agree on how they each spend their time and energy, so that if the wife hates (for example) her husband's serving as church treasurer, he might step down out of consideration for her feelings and just serve as a member of the church finance committee.

I hope this helps a bit.  Again, sorry you are having to deal with this.  But better now than after you're married.


"When Women Vote, We All Win!"

EveT

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Fitzer Posts : 643 Registered: 8/7/07
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:24 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

I'd need to know more about his reasoning before making any suggestions.  If it's just that he wants more of your time, that's not the best argument, but if his reasoning is that the rest of the committee members don't do their job and you have to take on their responsibility and he hates to see you stress out, then that's another.

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Guest
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:28 PM Go to message in response to: Fitzer

I think part of his problem with my involvement is that he feels I was taken advantage of this past year as chair, as some of my committee members didn't do what they were supposed to or didn't come to meetings.  However, I understand that as chair it was my responsibility to step up to the plate to get things done. 

I think another part of the problem is that he is very lucky in that no one close to him has ever had cancer, so it's not as important to him.  I just don't know how to make him see that it is important to me.


Valerie

Wedding Date:  September 27, 2008

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PharmToxGirl Posts : 5,446 Registered: 8/30/07
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:31 PM Go to message in response to: EveT2007

Eve has the right of it.  I know that I was asked to run for "President" of an organization I belong to.  Now I immediately said NO.  When I told FH, he said NO before I even told him anything.

So I got mad.  LOL  I told him that if I chose to do it that was one thing and if he had reservations about it, then that was OK but he needed to explain that not tell me NO.  I have no problems considering his point of view, but wasn't OK being told what to do.

And we worked that out.  Now, I'm running for "VP" of the group, which he was happy with and I'm much happier with too.

So, I guess my point is, find out exactly why to at about it is bothering him and try to sit down and discuss it.  You both may be laboring under some misconceptions.


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EveT2007 Posts : 1,949 Registered: 8/31/06
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:52 PM Go to message in response to: PharmToxGirl

Hi, Valerie --  I see that you reiterated one of your points from your OP, about your FH not having anyone in his family who has had cancer.  You know, people have strong reactions to cancer.  I was widowed due to my late husband having a rare (and misdiagnosed) form of cancer.  My present husband lost his wife to a cancerous brain tumor.  Years earlier, the mom who raised me died of ovarian cancer.  The "C-word" is a very scary thing for many people. 

Some people respond to that by wanting to be active, as you are, in raising money etc.  Others just don't want anything to do with it.  To be honest, I tend to be more on the latter side, while my DH is more of the former.  If I wanted for us to walk in our local Relay for Life, he'd be glad to do so.  Since I am not comfortable doing that, we just make a monetary contribution to a friend who walks in it.  It's not that I don't care about people who have cancer, I do.  I just don't like the hoopla atmosphere of the Relay for Life.  That's just me.

Yesterday my DH was at cardiac rehab, where they have TV sets by the treadmills, and was watching a ball game while he exercised.  A lady on another treadmill was watching the news about Ted Kennedy's brain tumor.  She looked over at my DH and said, "I can't believe someone would be watching a ball game when this is on the news!"  A nurse came over to her and told her to be quiet and mind her own business because some of the patients in the room had had personal tragedies due to cancer and did not necessarily want to be reminded of it.

I don't know if this sheds any light on what may be happening in your relationship, but I hope it may be of some help.


"When Women Vote, We All Win!"

EveT

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goldelox20 Posts : 152 Registered: 8/6/07
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 3:57 PM Go to message in response to: PharmToxGirl

Wow, FH and I had the same "discussion" last night and this morning and I'm sure it will continue until the fundraiser that I'm chairing is over next week.

I have no words of advice, but I'm glad to know I'm not the only one. 

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Guest
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 4:48 PM Go to message in response to: goldelox20

Goldelox - I'm so glad to see I'm not the only one!  Let me know if you figure out how to deal with it. 

My problem right now is the my fundraiser isn't going to "go away."  Or at least I don't want it to.  I want to always be involved, which means meetings and such at least six months out of the year. 

The way I see it is I have two options - 1) to continuously fight and argue with FH over participating in something so important to me, or 2) don't participate.  Both options stink!


Valerie

Wedding Date:  September 27, 2008

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DCTexan Posts : 170 Registered: 10/24/07
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 5:32 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

I obviously don't know all of the issues, but I don't think there is a reason that you would have to choose.  I think that relationships are made better when each partner has their own interests.  That way, you two can be more than just the sum of your parts.  If you did everything the same, you wouldn't have anything to talk about or learn from each other!

I think PP had it right when she suggested a "date night."  If you and your FH set aside time each week to spend only with each other, then he will see that this fundraiser is not going to prevent you from spending time with him. 

I really don't think you should have to give something up that is so important to you just because it isn't important to him. 

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We2Heart Posts : 452 Registered: 10/11/07
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 21, 2008 9:26 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

I know its not the same, but FH and I used to fight about my level of involvement in my sorority.  Being something really important to me, I was always spending my free time and (lots) of money to keep things going, and hoping to keep the girls motivated.  It seemed like everyone just didn't care as much as I did and they neglected their responsibilities, so I would feel like I had to pick up the slack. Long story short, I stepped back because it was hurting FH (then still BF) who felt that it was affecting our future relationship. 

I was worried what would happen if I wasn't there as much anymore. Because it seemed like I was the only one that did anything for the group.  But you know what happened?  The rest of the girls stepped up to the plate. 

I guess what I'm saying is that I believe if you step down someone will step up and do more.  Sometimes, some people know they can get away with neglecting their responsibilities because there is someone like you to pick up the slack.  But when that person is gone, then they realize they can't just slack off anymore.  And it's not like you have to completely drop out.  There are plenty of other ways to show your continuing support for Relay and cancer research. 

Though it's a great cause and I definitely applaud your support for the cause, if your FH is really fighting with you about it, maybe coming to some kind of compromise is best here.

Good Luck! I know it's really hard to fight with your FH about this because it's not like its a bad habit.  It's helping fundraise for cancer research!


**I love him like a fat kid loves cake**  Kiss

**It just hit me that in 4 months, I will become the Mrs. to my Mr.**

 

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77ChevyGirl Posts : 272 Registered: 1/6/08
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 22, 2008 3:53 AM Go to message in response to: Guest

MrsH,

There is a happy medium here.  I don't think this has to be an all or nothing scenario.

I agree with everyone else who said you have to find out WHY.  I created my own non-profit on a cause that was very near and dear to me.  FH knew this, and actually helped me to start it.  We rarely get date nights & so on (we're both workaholics working multiple jobs).  He knew how important this was to me, and thus it became important to him.

I do think you need to find out is it because of the fear/discomfort with the topic of cancer that some PP's had mentioned, is it because of the fear of you being taken advantage of like you had said, is it a time issue...SOMETHING is bothering him about this.

If my FH & I need to discuss something that's REALLY important or we're arguing about something, I write my thoughts out so that I know I'm making all the points I want/need to.  Maybe you should just write out some key points from your perspective & then sit him down & just talk.  Listen to each other & try to find a middle ground.

You can absolutely be a part of this fund-raiser without it killing you (or your marriage).  If it's a time issue, see if you can "down-size" some of your responsibilities.  There are ways to making something like this work so that it's a good compromise for both of you, and no one gets really hurt. 


~ Lauren - The Future Mrs. Harvey

 

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Guest
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 22, 2008 6:47 AM Go to message in response to: 77ChevyGirl

Thank you all for the replies and support!  I sat down with FH last night and we had an actual discussion (as opposed to the arguments and silence we had been dealing with earlier in the week).  His concern was similar to what I thought it was - that I would be taken advantage of on the committee as the former-chair and end up picking up a bunch of extra work just because I used to be chair and knew the ins and outs of it all.  I assured him that it would not be like that, that I did know how to say no, and that I had picked the easiest committee position that was available.  

After that conversation, everything is mostly back to normal.  I think he still has reservations about me doing the majority of the work, because I was completely taken advantage of this past year in that aspect, but the only way to get rid of those concerns are to prove to him that it's not going to happen again. 

I'm so glad this argument is finally over!  Let's just hope in never resurfaces... :)


Valerie

Wedding Date:  September 27, 2008

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: NWR - week-long fight - need advice
Posted: May 22, 2008 9:14 AM Go to message in response to: Guest

Dear Valerie,

Remember, it is not the inherent goodness of an issue that matters, but the level of agreement or disagreement between the couple.

If the two cannot reach some kind of middle ground, then the issue (whatever it is) becomes a deal-breaker.

There's nothing wrong with having deal-breakers. We all have them. My own is smoking: I refuse to be involved with a man who smokes. Common other deal-breakers are infidelity or criminal behavior.

Only you can decide if you have reached the deal-breaker stage in this issue, and from what you said in your last message, it appears as if the two of you have an effective compromise. That is good, and sets a good pattern for future issue negotiation.

***

I know well the Relay for Life. My husband has walked it many times; we have a snapshot of him snoring away in a portable chair during one of his breaks. It's a very worthy cause and I wish you the best.

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