Locksmith? We’ve Lost the Key to Communication! Send help!

My husband speaks in ellipses.  He claims to not understand what I mean by this.  Naturally.  I was inspired recently by It’s A Dome Life, who wrote a very funny blog about communication.  It made me think about communication in my own marriage, or lack thereof.

The phrase “What did I say? or “What did I do?” is constantly uttered by my husband, in a rather plaintive and whiny tone of voice.  Is communication between husbands and wives really that difficult?  Do we misunderstand each other on purpose?  Are we truly just not speaking the same language?  Is he from Mars?  Or was it Venus?  Remember those books?

My husband takes a ton of abuse in my blogs, and yes he does read them.  Some of it is justified, and some of it is just me on a rant.  Luckily for me, this blog is one-sided.  Before you start feeling sorry for him, please know that he’s got a pretty big ego.  I don’t say this in a mean-spirited way, it’s just true.  We joke (not really) that he hasn’t met a reflective surface he didn’t like.  He can admire his visage in a water puddle in the middle of the street after a good rain.  Not to abuse him further (lol), but I just want to clarify that he is a really good sport, and he knows that I love him dearly, and wouldn’t be married to anyone else.  He is without question, my biggest fan.  Maybe my only fan.  (I don’t have his…let’s say, “confidence”)

Having said that…communication, please send a locksmith, we’ve lost the key.

By far the most annoying communication style my husband possesses is “the ellipses”.  What do I mean by this?  Here is an example:

Me:  “So, I am going by the store and then picking up child #3, can you swing by and pick up child #2 because child #1 has plans and can’t do it today?”

***now, anyone with any sense (wives and/or mothers) knows this question is basically rhetorical.  The correct response is “sure” or “ok” or “no problem” with a smile.***

Husband:  “Ok….?”  (he says this with a lilt on the end of the “k” while scrolling through his blackberry, checking his calendar, with his eyebrows pulled down into a scowl)

I glean several things from the way he’s said ok.  First of all, there is Ok (period) and there is Ok (ellipses).  The first implies consent and acceptance.  The second implies there is an issue and compliance may not be in order.

Me:  “What do you mean ok…?”  

Husband: “I mean, sure I guess that’s ok…?”

Me:  “What do you mean you guess?”

Husband: (yells) “I said I’d do it!”

Me: (also yelling)  “You don’t have to yell, just agree to do it in the first place!” 

Husband:  (still yelling) “I thought that’s what I did!”

Me:  (yelling and door slamming) “Clearly not!  Or we wouldn’t be having this conversation and now I’m late….(mumble, grumble out the door)

My husband utilizes this style of answering quite frequently.  It’s giving me grey hairs and frown lines.  Just say:

OK.

YES.

NO.

Or freaking elaborate!  But don’t utilize the ellipses style one-word commentary or I will cut you!

His next style of communication that gives me fits is “yes, I can do that but…”  Here is an example:

Me:  “Child #3 doesn’t have to be at school early this morning.  Child #1 is sick, so child #2 doesn’t have a ride to school and both Child #3 and Child #2 have to be at school at the same time and I need to be at work because I have a report due this morning, so can you take Child #2 after dropping off Child #4?”  (I know it’s hard to keep up with all these kids, imagine how we feel.)

Husband:  “Ok.” (no ellipses here, yay)  “I had a meeting at 7:30 this morning, but I guess I can take it from the car.  It is sort of an important meeting.” (I celebrated too soon)

Me: “Ok, no problem.  I’ll just be in two places at once.” (this conversation happens over text by the way, as most of our conversations do)

Husband: “Don’t be that way.  I said I would do it.  I don’t know why you can’t be more supportive.”

Me:  “More supportive?  MORE SUPPORTIVE? (right about now, my husband is silently screaming at the sent text ABORT! ABORT!)  What does “more supportive” look like to you?  I don a cape and fly our children around at super sonic speeds so they all make it where they need to go without being tardy and we end up in truancy court (again), all so you are spared the horrific inconvenience of taking a call in you car from your blackberry with your bluetooth for the first 15 minutes of a meeting that probably won’t start on time anyway?!?!?!?!?”

A few hours later:

Husband:  “Why can’t I stay mad at you?”

Me:  “Because you are always wrong and you know it”

Husband:  “Well played, my dear, well played.”

Me:  “Whatever.”

This next style of communication meltdown might be the worst, only because not only does my husband use it, but so do my kids. I call it simply “The Repeater.”  Despite popular opinion, I am not a walking calendar.  My strong belief is that if you have access to the same information I do (i.e. school calendars, band schedules, etc..) or I have previously communicated necessary information to you, then you are responsible for it.

Here is an example of what I am talking about:

Husband:  “So, what time do we have to be there?”

Me: <sigh> “Well, as I said in the e-mail I sent to both your home and work addresses and the follow-up text I sent this morning, we have to be there at 7pm”

Husband:  “Sorry (clearly not sorry), I just wanted to make sure.” (because the legion of communication I sent out wasn’t clear)

Me:  “Yeah…whatever” <insert eye roll>

Husband:  “So, are the kids riding with us?”

Me:  <glares incredulously at husband>

Husband:  “Kidding!”  (As he frantically looks up the e-mail I sent him previously)

Why do I even bother trying to be organized and communicate?!??!  If I hadn’t sent the e-mail, text or both, the conversation would have been centered around the fact that I never tell him anything!

How did I survive marriage and children before blogging?  More importantly, how did they survive?  Our kids beg us constantly to go on a reality show like Amazing Race because we are so funny (believing that we are hilarious is probably a coping mechanism they use to deal with us).  I’m pretty sure we’d have every Dr. One-Name (like Phil, Drew, etc..) knocking down our door or committing us or taking our children away (wait…that thought has merit…lol Child Services, don’t threaten us with a good time!)

I’d love to believe as we get older/wiser that our communication will get easier/better.  I would even settle for mildly improved upon, but working with Seniors has taught me the fallacy of this thinking.

Our only salvation is our ability to laugh at ourselves.  Right, honey?  Honey?

Oh dear…

13 thoughts on “Locksmith? We’ve Lost the Key to Communication! Send help!

  1. This sounds so familiar. Sometimes I get frustrated with being the keeper of information. My husband had a doctor’s appointment that he scheduled. It went on the calendar. I reminded him of it for almost a week straight. We talked about it the night before. We talked about it that morning. Then he forgot about it and had the nerve to blame me and say, “Why didn’t you remind me?” Seriously? I don’t even respond anymore. I have just perfected a look. I have a mom look and a wife look…my wife look works much better!

    I’m super jealous of this blog post. It is way funnier than mine. I may have to arm wrestle you now.

    • Aww thanks, but I thought yours was funnier. We are probably our own worst critics. I never think I’m funny. Well sometimes I think I’m funny, but mostly just weird or insane lol. I have a mom look! The kids call it the “death stare”. Thanks for the inspiration!

    • I thought both of your posts were hilarious. I may not have children, but I defo have a boyfriend that I live with who does all of those things. Sans children. I can’t imagine adding them to the mix…well, not yet anyways 😉

  2. Oy, I started reading one of your fine posts and am commenting on another. Confuse-a-what strikes again! I was going to comment about how Seniors communicate, being as we communicate pretty much like we did as Juniors, which is confusedly. JC and I miscommunicate all the time. The fact that we love one another deeply overrides the confusion and we manage to figure out what it is were trying to say, do, feel, think, and all that. So, there is hope. I actually stopped by here to give huzzahs and tell you that you are one of my nominees for the Liebster Award. It’s an honest-to-goodness award and the whole hoo-ha can be found here: http://www.homelesschroniclesintampa.blogspot.com/2012/09/row80-last-day-64-liebster-award.html. I think this is an awesome thing and I think you deserve a shot at this. This is not like my silly fake contest blog, “Silly Dad Name Blog.” This is the real megilla. I thank Mr. Aaron for this. A finer man, other than my JC, I do not know. Mary. ❤

  3. lol i don’t know about you, but i’ve found out that the myers briggs test has been really helpful in letting me get to know my husband…maybe i’ll make a more in depth post about it…but here’s a link you and your husband can take the test and compare….(http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/jtypes2.asp) now i’m not saying for you to take everything that is written in there literally but maybe looking at it will help you guys understand WHY the other does what they do….

    after my husband and I have taken that test we have actually fought LESS….
    YES….you’ve inspired me to write a post about that but for now ….

    Congrats I’m nominating you for the Sunshine Award!! xoxo Love yah babe! (check my website for more details! lub yah!xxoxoox

    • I’ve not taken that one, but we did this love languages class once, and it was pretty enlightening and by that I mean hilarious. My husband feels loved if I clean the kitchen, I feel loved if he pays attention to me, and not just grabbing my boob, but actual communication. Oh well, we have the rest of our lives to figure it out right? Now that I just replied as Debbie Downer, thanks so much for my Sunshine Award!!!! I’m heading over to your blog now, and you need to teach me how to switch to wordpress.org. Thanks again muah xoxoxo

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s