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kborsden
02-04-2007, 02:23 AM
Every few days or so, the missus and I will have an argument. Usually because I'm 'spending too much time on the computer'. She's always on at me for not paying attention to her, although I only write for two hours a day. The last argument went so far, it ended with her telling me what she really thinks of my writing. She thinks it's a stupid dream and that I'll never get anywhere with it. This hurts and upsets me deeply. The mother of my child, my wife-to-be has no belief in what I hope to achieve. roght there and then I wanted to give up on my writing for good. Does anyone else recognize this situation?

kie

Mandy-Jane
02-04-2007, 03:39 AM
I'm really sorry she said that to you. It must feel awful. But you mustn't give up on your writing. My guess is that she merely feels left out. When we're angry, we often say things that are mean and hurtful, but we really don't mean them. I know, because I said a similar thing to my husband once. I meant it at the time because I was very angry (a similar situation - he was spending a great deal of time away from the kids and I, and I'd had enough.) I later realised I was wrong, and had been lashing out in anger. I think he realised it too, but of course it doesn't take away something that's already been said.

I think you should talk to her about it. Tell her how upset it made you. You need someone who will really support you, but sometimes non-writers just don't understand the depth and significance of what our writing means to us. Maybe that's all it is.

Hope this helps.

thethinker42
02-04-2007, 03:57 AM
To be perfectly honest, I couldn't live with someone who thought my need to write was stupid or that I'd never get anywhere with it. He doesn't have to "get it", he doesn't have to be my cheerleader, but I couldn't deal with the negativity. I've had to make a few compromises about my writing time, but he's never once given me any indication he thinks I should NOT write (quite the contrary...he just felt we weren't spending enough time together, and he was right).

The Lady
02-04-2007, 03:59 AM
She thinks it's a stupid dream and that I'll never get anywhere with it.


So, is she an editor or a publisher or something? What's her area of expertise? How does she know this? Is she a beta reader for some other genius? Can she clarify what areas of weakness in your writing will cause your failure? I'm just interested in how knowledgeable a conversation she can have about the writing business. If she's just wishing bad upon you, well then that tells you something about her character, and I'm afraid, also about yours for having chosen her.

Show me who you love. I'll tell you who you are.

Two hours a day to insist on having to yourself is nothing. If she's finding it a problem now, you can bet every time that child cries when it's born, she'll insist you attend to it.
Sit her down now. Tell her what's non negotiable. Be firm.


I'm afraid if your two hours a day are negotiable, depending on whether your partner allows it or not, then you lack the back bone to succeed. Would she be ok if you spent two hours in front of the tv? If the answer is yes, then you are living with a saboteur. By the way, if she has any dreams or pursuits, I hope you are supporting her in those. If she don't and resents yours, well one of you is going to have to change. You give up your dreams or she gives up her resentment,


This reminds me terribly of another thread I read on here a while back. After everyone tossed it back and forth for long time, with lots of great advice and writerly well wishing and support, the op popped back with a timely comment on how amazing his partner was in bed. I stopped reading the thread. There's nothing to say to that.


roght there and then I wanted to give up on my writing for good.


OK, but don't you ever blame her for it. Years later, when you blame her for your broken dreams and all those lost years, she won't even remember the conversation. Shake it off. Toughen up. This is but the first battle. There will be many others.

kborsden
02-04-2007, 04:06 AM
We did talk about it after the argument, and she said that it wasn't my writing but my 'obsessive persuit'. I do love her and my child, we are very happy together. I told her that I would never give up writing because it was more than just a dream, it's a part of me, it's who I am, what I do. I've been rejected and let down so many times that I've lost count, therein she sees the futility. I DO have a back-bone. I'm just not sure if I take being put down by someone so close to me. Maybe she did say it in anger just to spite me, maybe there is a truth in her words, maybe it will go nowhere. I'm going to keep on writing until it kills me, but at what expence?

Gabriel
02-04-2007, 04:09 AM
So, is she an editor or a publisher or something? What's her area of expertise? How does she know this? Is she a beta reader for some other genius? Can she clarify what areas of weakness in your writing will cause your failure? I'm just interested in how knowledgeable a conversation she can have about the writing business. If she's just wishing bad upon you, well then that tells you something about her character, and I'm afraid, also about yours for having chosen her.

Show me who you love. I'll tell you who you are.

Two hours a day to insist on having to yourself is nothing. If she's finding it a problem now, you can bet every time that child cries when it's born, she'll insist you attend to it.
Sit her down now. Tell her what's non negotiable. Be firm.


I'm afraid if your two hours a day are negotiable, depending on whether your partner allows it or not, then you lack the back bone to succeed. Would she be ok if you spent two hours in front of the tv? If the answer is yes, then you are living with a saboteur. By the way, if she has any dreams or pursuits, I hope you are supporting her in those. If she don't and resents yours, well one of you is going to have to change. You give up your dreams or she gives up her resentment,


This reminds me terribly of another thread I read on here a while back. After everyone tossed it back and forth for long time, with lots of great advice and writerly well wishing and support, the op popped back with a timely comment on how amazing his partner was in bed. I stopped reading the thread. There's nothing to say to that.




OK, but don't you ever blame her for it. Years later, when you blame her for your broken dreams and all those lost years, she won't even remember the conversation. Shake it off. Toughen up. This is but the first battle. There will be many others.
You hard ass!
:Hail:

If my girlfriend turned around and said something similar to what you describe kborsden, I would ignore her until she firstly apologised and agreed to let me write without a background of moaning. I'm such a passive agressive git. Thankfully though she loves my writing and fully understands it's one of the most important things in my life.

scarletpeaches
02-04-2007, 04:11 AM
I'd rather give up on the person than the writing.

My heart goes out to you, if I may be serious for a moment. When writing's your dream it hurts, really hurts when someone tells you you'll never make it. Even if she believes that, she doesn't have to say it. She could still support you.

Really, the spark of creativity we all have is what makes us human - and she's creative too...she's given birth.

I don't know what else to say, except...man, it must really hurt to hear such things from your significant other. If it were me, I'd question whether a partner who could say such things (in anger or not) could really 'get' me.

I split up from my first boyfriend for that reason. I was 16, he was 21 (as Cher sang) and he told me I'd "never make it." We didn't part ways there and then, but that was the moment I knew it was over.

Sorry, very gloomy reply and not much help I'm afraid. :(

thethinker42
02-04-2007, 04:16 AM
Maybe she did say it in anger just to spite me, maybe there is a truth in her words, maybe it will go nowhere. I'm going to keep on writing until it kills me, but at what expence?

I'm not one to accept that something so hurtful is forgivable because it was said "in anger". That it was said indicates that it was thought...perhaps they didn't want to say it, and in their anger, did so...but I have a hard time believing that something like that just randomly fell out of her mouth because she was mad. My experience has always been that if something out of line is spoken in anger, it was either 1) something they didn't really think, but said because it would cut the other person down (which is almost as bad, IMHO), or 2) something they really thought, but hadn't actually intended to say out loud.

As far as continuing to write, but at what expense, think about it: would you ask her to give up something that is a core part of who she is? I always hear the advice given to people that you CANNOT change who your partner is. Either accept the way they are, or move on. You should be able to expect that from her as well. It's one thing to ask for compromises -- ie., if you were writing so often that you never spent time with her, it's reasonable to expect you to meet her in the middle somewhere -- it's another completely berate something so important to someone and imply that they shouldn't do it AT ALL.

Good luck to you. I hope it works out well for you, whichever road you take.

kborsden
02-04-2007, 04:17 AM
I say 'two' hours, but ocasionally there is an overflow. Mostly I keep the computer on and go back and forth after I've had my time. I'm an obsessive compulsive when it comes to my manuscript.

Elodie-Caroline
02-04-2007, 04:17 AM
That's really awful for you Kie, your wife should be more supportive of you and encourage you with your writing and your dreams.
My husband used to complain when I first had a computer and was on here talking to people a lot on an internet site. But once I started writing on it, a couple of years ago now; he says that he can't wait to see me published and my writing in book form. He doesn't care if I sit on here all day and all night now... That's only so he can watch what he wants on the TV all of the time I reckon? LOL. My husband isn't a reader, never has been, but he is all for me trying to get published, especially as I finished my first WIP this week,and a friend is reading it over for me to look for any mistakes I may have done.


Elodie.

thethinker42
02-04-2007, 04:18 AM
You hard ass!
:Hail:

If my girlfriend turned around and said something similar to what you describe kborsden, I would ignore her until she firstly apologised and agreed to let me write without a background of moaning. I'm such a passive agressive git. Thankfully though she loves my writing and fully understands it's one of the most important things in my life.

If my husband said something like that to me, I'd passive-aggressively put all of his paintball gear on eBay so we could spend time together that he WOULD have spent paintballing...

kwwriter
02-04-2007, 04:20 AM
Your priorities are yours alone but we are talking two human beings here and one created out of love on the way...your odds of creating and keeping a content and happy marriage are far greater than becoming the next unforgettable writer. You may, however, become ( without question ) an unforgettable husband and father.

Speach over.

Your dreams are yours alone. Writing is solitary, we all know that. Your sig. other is just starting to see what this writing thing is all about. Patience. Explain and explain again. In the meantime, balance. All of us can go overboard with our obsession to want to create, sell and build a audience/readership. It's so much easier to lose ourselves to our work and to the computer than to discuss for however long it takes WHY we feel driven to write.

If writing is going to be a part of your life, just as she is and your child will be, then a pleasant medium must be created that you both can live with. Many have done it, you're not alone.

Best of luck to you.

JM

Cassiopeia
02-04-2007, 05:44 AM
Every few days or so, the missus and I will have an argument. Usually because I'm 'spending too much time on the computer'. She's always on at me for not paying attention to her, although I only write for two hours a day. The last argument went so far, it ended with her telling me what she really thinks of my writing. She thinks it's a stupid dream and that I'll never get anywhere with it. This hurts and upsets me deeply. The mother of my child, my wife-to-be has no belief in what I hope to achieve. roght there and then I wanted to give up on my writing for good. Does anyone else recognize this situation?

kieIs she pregnant? I would like to help you put this into perspective by saying...she is probably feeling insecure and most likely hormonal even if the child is already born. Perhaps she is jealous and feeling that she wished she had something of her own that she loved as much as you love your writing.

Perhaps she is afraid she will be lost to her role as a mother and soon to be wife. I know you said you are writing only two hours a day but do you also have another "day job"? Is she trapped indoors?

It seems she knows you very well. In fact so well that she knew just where to punch you. She is trying to get your attention. However, don't even think about it for a minute. Don't give up on writing. I don't care if a million people tell you that your work is cr@p. I think what she really wanted to say was..."I am afraid you will get so successful you will leave me and our child."

So here is what you do...first you ask yourself why she would say it. Don't ask if what she has merit...it doesn't. But ask what is she going through to turn on you in such a vicious way. Then if there is nothing plausible...THEN consider if you need to have a serious conversation about where your relationship is going. Also...I don't know you so my question now is not in judgement...but do you support her in finding something she finds joy in? If so..what does she love to do? Make sure that in writing you aren't hedging out time for her to do what she needs to do.

Just some thoughts,

Dixie
02-04-2007, 06:01 AM
Man I know how you feel. I've had my own parents shoot me down numerous times. And yes, I've given up on a couple of 'dreams' or at least put them on hold for a few years. ;)

Anymore I just shove the rude comments in the back of my mind and tell myself they lack the knowledge to have a rational conversation with me about my chosen passion. It is not worth arguing with them about it. Anymore, I keep my dreams to myself to protect them, and myself, from getting shot down again and again. They don't even realize they put me down, and when I do bring it up they deny it until they are blue in the face. Yes it is irritating, yes it is depressing, and yes it lessens your faith in yourself as a writer and even as a person.

Having to deal with it growing up, I've grown fairly thick skin. But there are times I am cut to the heart by their hurtful comments. It hurts because they are so close. If it were a stranger, it likely would have rolled off like water from a ducks back.

If a fiancee' had said something that hurtful, I would have sent them packing that night. It is hard to get your foot in the door as a writer, the last thing you need is someone to drag you down in order to build themselves up.

I honestly would look for another mate, regardless if she fathered your child. I would want someone to walk WITH me, not walk all over me. Her true character seems to shine through based on what little you've posted. Thats my .02 cents.

Cassiopeia
02-04-2007, 06:16 AM
If a fiancee' had said something that hurtful, I would have sent them packing that night. It is hard to get your foot in the door as a writer, the last thing you need is someone to drag you down in order to build themselves up.

I honestly would look for another mate, regardless if she fathered your child. I would want someone to walk WITH me, not walk all over me. Her true character seems to shine through based on what little you've posted. Thats my .02 cents.Wellllllll...now...let us not be too hasty. We are reading a brief description of the situation at hand. We are not hearing her side of the story and there are many reasons a person may lash out like that.

While I am all for having people in your life who are supportive and amazing and think we are great...I also think we have an obligation to be just as supportive in return.

I think it is unwise to give advise that someone should leave a person who either is or has carried their child without knowing more of the details.

For all we know...she is a writer as well and he called her a hack. The point is...we don't know everything about the situation.

Chumplet
02-04-2007, 06:30 AM
It's not my place to tell you whether to leave your partner or not - that's between you and her. Yes, things are said in anger. Many times, we say things we don't mean. I've been the recipient of many hurtful accusations from my DH before he straightened himself out. Your fiance may be hormonal, God knows I was when I had my children.

My problem was that I concentrated on the children and was accused of not giving my husband enough attention. That was before I began writing. Then I was accused of sleeping with every man I met. But that's another story.

After he went to the doctor and got his medication (yay!) he responded with mild enthusiasm when I told him I would like to write, and he helped me out by refurbishing an old Thinkpad for me to store my work (my handwriting sucks, and hurts, too).

After two years and two novels, and no agent or contract, his lukewarm support has cooled off somewhat. Still, he doesn't bother me when I sit on the couch, trying to edit my novel. He doesn't complain because he has no right. I dedicated countless hours catering to his well-being for twenty years, nurturing his neuroses and stroking his ego, and he can pay me back by not giving me any grief if I want to spend a couple of hours a day writing. God knows he ignores me for hours at a time, and it doesn't bother me.

He makes no secret of the fact that he believes my writing is only a hobby until I get my first cheque. He doesn't encourage me like other family members do, but so far he doesn't discourage me, either. I don't care. Whatever he says will not stop me from writing.

You guys may have to sit down and work out a schedule, or you can devote a set time every weekend for her, to do what she wants. Even if it means getting a babysitter so you can spend some time alone together, whether it be a walk in the park, a nice dinner, or curling up together to watch a slobbery chick flick. You gotta give a little to get a little. Just wait till your first sale - use the advance to buy your little baby something special!

If you find it difficult to respond to her heated words in person, use your writing skills and write her a nice letter, expressing your concerns in a loving way. But above all, don't give up your writing.

Judg
02-04-2007, 06:40 AM
I am a little concerned by the fact that when your two hours are over, they're not really over, that you keep drifting back to the computer. Maybe she's feeling neglected and maybe, just maybe, that feeling is justified.

I believe in win-win situations. Negotiate. For instance, you could tell her to consider it a hobby and an amazingly cheap one at that. It beats hanging out at sports bars with the boys, building sports cars in the garage, etc. etc. On the other hand, when your two hours are up, give her some time. Really give it. Don't have your head wrapped around the computer and a glazed look in your eyes as she talks to you. It sounds to me like you might be a little bit in denial about how much of your life this is really taking.

It's all very fine and well to have a dream and pursue it, but not at the price of sacrificing family and relationships. Nobody is perfect, and I'm more than a little appalled at all the advice you are getting to give her the boot. Yes, that was a hurtful thing for her to say. I know that when I'm fighting with my husband, I have to make a determined effort not to say a lot of things I'm thinking because by the next day even I won't believe it any more. So it wasn't necessarily what she really thinks.

The perfect woman doesn't exist. This can be worked out, and if you make it very clear to her that you are genuinely committed to her, and that you are willing to set boundaries around your dream, chances are very good she won't ask you to abandon it. She might not become a fantastic cheerleader, but you can't have everything. Benign indifference is enough.

My own husband is a wee bit conflicted. He thinks it's great, but... Basically he wants to make sure that important things aren't being neglected. Much as I hate to admit it, he's right.

Relationships - and most especially marriages - are incredibly valuable things. Please don't play the self-indulgent artist and sacrifice something of such great value.

janetbellinger
02-04-2007, 06:54 AM
Don't give up on your writing because of this. If you do it will come back to haunt you. It will weaken your relationship with your wife-to-be. You may find yourself resenting her because of it. Better to work through it with her. Why does she think it's a stupid dream? Perhaps she has secret dreams which she denies herself, perhaps because of the child. Maybe she secretly wishes she had the time to write or do some other creative endeavour as well and is envious that you have the time. Perhaps you could help her find a way to fulfill her creative dreams so she won't feel resentful of your's.


Every few days or so, the missus and I will have an argument. Usually because I'm 'spending too much time on the computer'. She's always on at me for not paying attention to her, although I only write for two hours a day. The last argument went so far, it ended with her telling me what she really thinks of my writing. She thinks it's a stupid dream and that I'll never get anywhere with it. This hurts and upsets me deeply. The mother of my child, my wife-to-be has no belief in what I hope to achieve. roght there and then I wanted to give up on my writing for good. Does anyone else recognize this situation?

kie

Carrie in PA
02-04-2007, 07:05 AM
I say 'two' hours, but ocasionally there is an overflow. Mostly I keep the computer on and go back and forth after I've had my time. I'm an obsessive compulsive when it comes to my manuscript.

And you don't see how she would have a problem with this? Really?

I'm just taking a guess, but I'd put down money that "occasionally" is really "usually".

I'm not excusing what she said, but I'm guessing she's at the end of her rope and her other attempts at getting your attention have failed. She's competing with a computer and losing. (At least from her vantage.)

jodiodi
02-04-2007, 07:25 AM
I am fortunate to have a husband who is more enthusiastic about my writing than I am. He's the one who talked me into trying to get published.

My mother, however, was a very harsh critic of my father's dreams. She said she was practical and I saw how she wasn't supportive of him. My own husband has some ideas that I think are really boneheaded and unrealistic, but I am supportive of him and try to help him to see all sides and think things through, not only because I love him, but because I refuse to be like my mother.

My mother was insecure and afraid of change or anything new; she refused to leave her comfort zone. Something similar may be going on with your SO.

Good luck.

maestrowork
02-04-2007, 07:35 AM
I say 'two' hours, but ocasionally there is an overflow. Mostly I keep the computer on and go back and forth after I've had my time. I'm an obsessive compulsive when it comes to my manuscript.

1. Pay some attention to your partner - designate good, quality time with her. Take her out on dates. When you're with her, focus on her. Don't sit next to her while your mind is caressing your manuscript.

2. Give yourself two hours and that's it. No more going back and forth, and no more OCD behaviors when it comes to your manuscript.

3. Turn off the computer when you're supposed to be spending time with her and your family. Seriously, TURN IT OFF. Unplug it. Lock it up. If you can't control yourself, at least don't allow the temptation.

4. If she still gives you a hard time and tells you you're spending way too much time with your "stupid dream" and not enough time with her, consider that she might be too needy and dependent on you, and seek couple counseling.

5. But do put some effort into working on having a balance between pursuing your dream and your family -- it is your life, the whole thing.

6. If she really doesn't care about your "dream" then there's nothing you can do about it. Forget it. You don't need her approval. But it doesn't mean you need to ruin your relationship because of that. Only you know what's best for you -- but seriously, there's no rule that says our spouse/partner must support and share our dreams. However, we do require some respect, and not distain and ridicule.

Good luck.

kristie911
02-04-2007, 07:48 AM
My ex-husband never ever supported my writing, he pissed and moaned about me writing when we could be spending time together...which basically was us watching television, usually something I didn't want to watch. Now keep in mind I have a laptop, so I was in the same room with him. He'd get pissed when I read too. So I would sit on a separate couch while he watched baseball or some other sport and pretend I was interested in it.

When I started submitting my manuscript I didn't even tell him for awhile. When I finally did, he laughed and said, "So when are you going to make me some money."

I'm glad he's my ex-husband. It was very discouraging.

Pagey's_Girl
02-04-2007, 08:01 AM
My ex-boyfriend was like that - he pretty much laughed at me for wanting to write.

Unfortunately, it's a danger sign when a person who claims to love you doesn't respect your dreams and ambitions, I've found. It doesn't bode well for the relationship.

ATP
02-04-2007, 09:05 AM
You are not alone. This is a fairly common problem:

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39894&highlight=spouse (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39894&highlight=spouse)
[how supportive is your spouse/so?]

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39613&highlight=spouse (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39613&highlight=spouse)
[your loved ones vs. your sanity]

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=24453&highlight=spouse (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=24453&highlight=spouse)
[writing and spouse]

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14478&highlight=spouse (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14478&highlight=spouse)
[sharing spouse/so and writing time]

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6825&highlight=spouse (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6825&highlight=spouse)
[support from spouses]

And, some contrast if you were working together -

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=42465 (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=42465)
[(writing) spouses working together]

Tallymark
02-04-2007, 09:29 AM
I am a little concerned by the fact that when your two hours are over, they're not really over, that you keep drifting back to the computer. Maybe she's feeling neglected and maybe, just maybe, that feeling is justified.

This caught my attention also. Even if you're really only going back a couple of times, the problem is that she may feel like your attention is not really on her when you're with her, but on the manuscript. You're like a yo-yo bouncing back and forth, and she feels like she's not the one holding the end of the string. Personally, I like bouncing back and forth between writing and other things, but I have no significant other, so my habits don't affect other people as much. But my mom can certainly tell when I'm not really listening.

Think of it this way: your computer is the other woman. Even if you and the other woman are just friends, you know them intimately and are spending an awful lot of time together...

It's quite possible that she is being too needy though. Of course, the writing may not be the real problem, it may be the straw on the camels back. What's bothering her may not even be totally tangible to her at this point, but with a young kid on hand, I suspect she's very stressed. These are things that'll work themselves out, you guys just need to communicate and figure them out together.

Also, I'm guessing that you've probably only been together for a few years? Couples spend a lot of time together or focused on family at this stage, especially with a kid in the mix. But eventually, after being married for a few years, spouses usually seek out their own personal space and time. This'll probably happen naturally. No one wants to spend *all* their time together.

For now, try to stop the yo-yo effect. See if that resolves anything. If not, then she's being unreasonable--everyone is entitled to some personal time, and how you spend it should be up to you (long as it's not an affair ;) ).

veinglory
02-04-2007, 09:38 AM
My honest opinion is that a wife and child come first. The very idea of just leaving someone for not supporting your writing is terrible. I would suggest you write at times least disruptive to your relationship, get up in the morning to do it, for example. That and hurry up and prove that your writing is good enough to get published and make some money. Until it has outcomes for the family writing is no different, from their point of view, to spending that time in the pub or playing computer games. From the writers point of view writing is important--from the wife and mother's point of view it is the love of her life and father of her kid turning his back on them both for hours at a time. Yes, she should take your piont of view more into account--but that goes both ways.

paprikapink
02-04-2007, 09:38 AM
People who don't write (or pursue other creative interests/obsessions/veins...) have no idea idea what it means to really, really need to do it. It's very likely she has no idea how much her remark hurts. To her, it could be like she told you not to wear those socks with those shorts.

The other thing is that baby. You haven't mentioned anything about your fiance's situation in your home, but I know for me, even with a very supportive husband who participated in childcare and cooking and whatnot a lot, I still felt that I was letting go of every personal quest I'd ever taken up or even considered following. Raising my daughter (and then daughters) was exactly what I wanted to be doing, but even so, to do it, I had to not do dozens of things that up till then had been important parts of my life.

I think both parents go through this transition and it's a tough passage. This is just my perspective, but I think it can be even harder for the mother because she is often the one who is lobbying for not only her needs to be met, but the child's as well. So she comes off as twice as needy as the father, who only needs to lobby for himself. Getting through this phase of life together requires a lot of trust, respect, and maturity. And a sense of humor don't hurt neither.

Norman D Gutter
02-05-2007, 05:48 PM
I agree with the last poster. Those who have no involvement don't understand what drives those that do. One evening my wife and I were sitting in our reading chairs, she reading and me writing a poem. Out of the blue she said, "Don't you think the world has enough poetry?" That was the start of it. Many things since then have convinced me that to keep the peace I need to minimize my writing efforts. So now I make sure the bills are paid, the checkbook balanced, the budget spreadsheet updated, the home business work done, and the honey-do list completed before I begin writing at home. Otherwise I write noon hours and breaks at work, and take a little time before and after work to do that same. You might consider something similar. Or, you might try research/writing improvement work and reading, which shows an intent to improve your craft and enhance your potential marketing success.

NDG

scarletpeaches
02-05-2007, 05:59 PM
It's all very well saying wife and child come first, work your writing around them, etc...but what concessions is the significant other making, aside from her...dare I say it, nagging?

There are many examples of women who support their husbands in their work without nagging and this in turn encourages the husband to ensure her emotional needs are met.

Criticism does no good. You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.

AllyWoof
02-05-2007, 07:59 PM
So, is she an editor or a publisher or something? What's her area of expertise? How does she know this? Is she a beta reader for some other genius? Can she clarify what areas of weakness in your writing will cause your failure? I'm just interested in how knowledgeable a conversation she can have about the writing business. If she's just wishing bad upon you, well then that tells you something about her character, and I'm afraid, also about yours for having chosen her.

Show me who you love. I'll tell you who you are.

Two hours a day to insist on having to yourself is nothing. If she's finding it a problem now, you can bet every time that child cries when it's born, she'll insist you attend to it.
Sit her down now. Tell her what's non negotiable. Be firm.


I'm afraid if your two hours a day are negotiable, depending on whether your partner allows it or not, then you lack the back bone to succeed. Would she be ok if you spent two hours in front of the tv? If the answer is yes, then you are living with a saboteur. By the way, if she has any dreams or pursuits, I hope you are supporting her in those. If she don't and resents yours, well one of you is going to have to change. You give up your dreams or she gives up her resentment,


This reminds me terribly of another thread I read on here a while back. After everyone tossed it back and forth for long time, with lots of great advice and writerly well wishing and support, the op popped back with a timely comment on how amazing his partner was in bed. I stopped reading the thread. There's nothing to say to that. .

Having a certian amount of time should not be negotiable, but the time of day said block of time is set could be. This way you get your writing and your partner doesn't have to get upset.

Judg
02-05-2007, 11:40 PM
Just out of curiosity, how many people here advocating taking a hard line with the non-writer have successful, long-term marriages or relationships? I'm sidling up to my 27th wedding anniversary. Both my husband and I are hard-headed, a little on the perfectionist side (OK, a lot, but he's worse!), inclined to be a bit bossy and occasionally a bit touchy. In other words, we don't just naturally fall into an easy-going live-and-let live attitude. We've had to work at it. We quarrel rather frequently. But we giggle together even more frequently and can still spend 8 hours in the car together and find new things to say. It's worth working at a marriage, and it's worth keeping things in perspective.

I'm not saying give up your writing, but I am saying it's not an altar to sacrifice everything near and dear to you on. Negotiate. It can be done. And don't lay on your wife the heavy burden of being obliged to understand you to the core all the time. That can't be done. You can't understand her that well all the time either. Like I said, sometimes benign neglect is plenty good enough.

dreamsofnever
02-06-2007, 12:22 AM
Ouch. I can't say that I'm in the same position as you at present, but I can say that this sounds really painful. After all, if your spouse doesn't support you and stand by you in this world, then who will?

That said, it sounds as though she was lashing out at you by way of criticizing your writing. It also sounds that she's jealous of the time you spend writing. So to give some advice from a more relationship standpoint... I think it would be best if the two of you can find the time to sit down and talk, both agreeing to check your tempers at the door.

Maybe she just needs to feel like you're putting some of the passion and energy you've invested in your writing into your relationship with her. Please don't take that as a dig-it's quite possible that you feel you are putting a lot of time and energy into the relationship, but maybe it's just not in the way that she craves? That's where talking it out and seeing what she wants from you. The other aspect of talking about this is explaining to her just how important your writing is to you, and maybe explaining to her why you are spending so much time with it.

I also wonder how often you ask her to look over something you've written. I wonder this because in my last serious relationship, I never wanted to share my work with him. I didn't trust him to appreciate it, and as a result, I shut him out of this huge part of my life that I felt very strongly about. Sometimes it's a bit awkward to show someone you care about what you're working on, particularly if it's in a genre that they might not read normally, but in showing her what you feel strongly about, you're giving her the chance to be a part of this side of your life that she seems to be at odds with.

Of course, take all this with a grain of salt, as I'm only going on what you've posted and of course I don't know the ins and outs of your particular relationship. Whatever else comes of it though, please don't give up writing, because it's clearly something that's important to you, and even if you never sell a book in your lifetime, it's still something that you enjoy doing, and no one should take that away from you.

Oh, and on another note-it could be worse-you could spend those two hours a day (or more) out at the bar with your single friends, or playing videogames, or staring at the TV... at least you're creating something with your leisure time!

Hope this helps.

kborsden
02-06-2007, 03:10 AM
Thanks for the advice people. We're still not talking properly but seem to be negotiating friendly terms for a cease-fire. So who knows, maybe this could work out after all.

kie

scarletpeaches
02-06-2007, 03:15 AM
Just out of curiosity, how many people here advocating taking a hard line with the non-writer have successful, long-term marriages or relationships?

How many of us would WANT a relationship with someone who insulted something so dear to us?

It's all very well recommending acceptance of those who criticise writing time, but what about acceptance of the person doing the writing as well?

crazynance
02-06-2007, 04:48 AM
kie- is this her way of saying that she is AFRAID that you will never succeed, leaving you all without a means of support? Or does it mean her mother is ragging her ass about you again? You have actually proved my theory: If mama aint happy, aint nobody happy.

Have you ever seen the way her family expresses negative ideas? Because anyone who's seen my family fight should run for the hills. We're all nuts. When my father found out that I was on the pill at 19, instead of saying he was concerned that i would get into a bad relationship, he reamed me out for not making something of my life and not accomplishing the right things.. guess what? he totally had a crap relationship with his parents, and never learned how to express himself. To show that we are working things out, can I just say that at 44 I am going back to work for him.. ^_^ But your woman may be coming at you in a roundabout way. I would definitely try to have a discussion about this at a neutral time when you are both calm and have been fed. Do you have a plan of action, in case writing doesn't support you? Does she have time for her stuff and for together stuff with you and together stuff with you two and the child? Try plotting out the time to yourself and then ask her to plot out how she perceives how time is spent in the household. Just suggestions. Try reading dr dobson: what every woman wishes her husband knew about women. What a gift that book was. Yes my mother gave it to me.. Women are from Venus and Men are from Mars is also excellent. YES we speak two different languages.
Good Luck, relationships are tricky.

In our relationship, if my husband really wanted to do something, I would support him. Because I love him, and I know he can do anything except home repair. If he really wanted to do home repair, I would probably insist he go to a class or fifty. But I wouldn't lash out at him. He is an extension of me! I need him to be satisfied and happy so I can be satisfied and happy/ and vice-versa.
Have you seen the John Travolta movie: Phenomenon - What does your woman need to do? What are her 'chairs'? Do you support her need? Even if you think it is flaky or irrelevant?
[now I seriously wonder how you could consider the needs of your love to be irrelevant or flaky; hmm, maybe I'll write a book about it, and we could all be in it.. )

veinglory
02-06-2007, 05:01 AM
There is no way to understand someone's home life just by reading internet posts. All we can offer is advice meant to help and a point of view. My point of view is that there are things more important than writing, and high on that list would be our children.

Willowmound
02-06-2007, 05:51 AM
I don't have children, so writing tops my list. Anyone not liking that can puck off.

Any relationship I might develop will be with someone who understands this.

Sohia Rose
02-06-2007, 09:30 AM
Sheesh! What happened to 'til death do us part? (Although I do believe you said she was your soon-to-be wife?).

Anyway, if my husband said STOP writing today. I would stop. No questions asked because I'm sure he'd have his reasons. He would never ask me to stop doing something if he didn't think it was for the better. But that's the kind of trust I have towards my hubby.

What about a compromise? Have you even looked at it from her side? Perhaps she feels that you're selfish, spending all of your available time with your manuscript and not her? Maybe she wants to feel like she's first? What'ya think?

The worst thing you can do is do nothing. This won't go away. She'll resent you for it. Let me ask you this. How would you feel if she left you? Would you be happy with just your writing?

Cassiopeia
02-06-2007, 09:43 AM
Sheesh! What happened to 'til death do us part? (Although I do believe you said she was your soon-to-be wife?).

Anyway, if my husband said STOP writing today. I would stop. No questions asked because I'm sure he'd have his reasons. He would never ask me to stop doing something if he didn't think it was for the better. But that's the kind of trust I have towards my hubby.

What about a compromise? Have you even looked at it from her side? Perhaps she feels that you're selfish, spending all of your available time with your manuscript and not her? Maybe she wants to feel like she's first? What'ya think?

The worst thing you can do is do nothing. This won't go away. She'll resent you for it. Let me ask you this. How would you feel if she left you? Would you be happy with just your writing?Good post and good points!

I am a practical kinda gal and let me tell you while writing is a passion of mine..my loved ones are more so. Writing doesn't keep you warm at night. Your spouse does. And while we need support from those we love...we need to remember ultimately our validation comes from within and then from the publisher. :)

Oh...and PS. There is no law that says people we love have to like what we do or even get it. It is just a bonus when we do. And what if..just what if your spouse is right and you suck at it....find out from her..what sucks and see if you can't change that. Don't have a tantrum and say "fine I give up!"

kborsden
02-06-2007, 02:42 PM
I spend most of my day at home, cleaning and looking after my girlfriend. I have been diagnosed with a severe mental illness, so I can't go out and work. Some days, I can't even leave the house. I do not spend all available time on the computer. Because we don't live together right now, I live in a flat on the other side of town, she lives with her mother, I spend 5 days a week with her and 2 days at my flat. During those 2 days I spend 2 hours, sometimes a little more, on the computer. I'm not having TANTRUMS, I just need to do my thing from time to time.

Cassiopeia
02-06-2007, 03:09 PM
I spend most of my day at home, cleaning and looking after my girlfriend. I have been diagnosed with a severe mental illness, so I can't go out and work. Some days, I can't even leave the house. I do not spend all available time on the computer. Because we don't live together right now, I live in a flat on the other side of town, she lives with her mother, I spend 5 days a week with her and 2 days at my flat. During those 2 days I spend 2 hours, sometimes a little more, on the computer. I'm not having TANTRUMS, I just need to do my thing from time to time.But you see you are having a tantrum when you say, "i just feel like giving up." that is its own kind of tantrum. I should know..i throw them quite often :)

scarletpeaches
02-06-2007, 04:07 PM
Anyway, if my husband said STOP writing today. I would stop. No questions asked because I'm sure he'd have his reasons. He would never ask me to stop doing something if he didn't think it was for the better. But that's the kind of trust I have towards my hubby.

Hmm. I can't say I'd ever have THAT much trust in someone. There's trust and there's...well, let's just say I can't see myself EVER marrying someone who thought they had the right to TELL me what to do. Even if it's important, he could ask me, or not at all. And I'd always retain my right to tell him to sod off.

It's a brave man who tries to give me orders.

Willowmound
02-06-2007, 05:16 PM
Scarlet: never stop writing. That's an order.

(see, I'm brave :) )

johnzakour
02-06-2007, 05:30 PM
My wife is a very logical person and she wasn't thrilled at all at first with my choice of changing my life from that of a well paid web guru to a writer. We found a compromise I would write for X months then after that time if I was bringing in Y $ a month I would continue to write. If not I would go back to being a web guy and write on the side, for fun. Sometimes it helps to have a measurable goal.

Writing is great, but you can't eat dreams.

That said, that bet was made 13 years and I'm still writing full time. (Of course it really helps to have a wife with a regular job.)

You and your wife / wife to be / significant other don't have to understand each other's passions for your jobs just learn to respect them.

scarletpeaches
02-06-2007, 05:32 PM
Scarlet: never stop writing. That's an order.

(see, I'm brave :) )

How very, VERY dare you! I'm so angry I could...I could...go write another chapter!

Azure Skye
02-06-2007, 06:26 PM
I spend most of my day at home, cleaning and looking after my girlfriend. I have been diagnosed with a severe mental illness, so I can't go out and work. Some days, I can't even leave the house. I do not spend all available time on the computer. Because we don't live together right now, I live in a flat on the other side of town, she lives with her mother, I spend 5 days a week with her and 2 days at my flat. During those 2 days I spend 2 hours, sometimes a little more, on the computer. I'm not having TANTRUMS, I just need to do my thing from time to time.

That doesn't sound like a tantrum to me but more like a man trying to reclaim some of his time.

Maybe you guys need to have a good sit down and show her just how much time you're devoting to writing and how much you're devoting to her. A compromise can be made, I'm sure. Good luck mate.

Sohia Rose
02-06-2007, 06:28 PM
Hmm. I can't say I'd ever have THAT much trust in someone. There's trust and there's...well, let's just say I can't see myself EVER marrying someone who thought they had the right to TELL me what to do. Even if it's important, he could ask me, or not at all. And I'd always retain my right to tell him to sod off.

It's a brave man who tries to give me orders.

It works for us. :)

I would have never married him if I didn't trust his judgment. My husband is a smart man. Plus, he's the man of the house. He's a leader.

Also, when I was a little girl, my mother used to say, "When you get married, you have to choose your battles. Stop and ask yourself. 'Is whatever it is worth my marriage?'" Nope. I'm in it for the long haul. I think people are to quick to give up their vows. I made my decision. I trust MY judgment and I chose right.

Besides, nothing in this world is more important to me than my husband, even writing. I wouldn't be able to write without my hubby by my side. I'd be miserable and lifeless. But that's just me.

ATP
02-06-2007, 06:29 PM
Hmm. I can't say I'd ever have THAT much trust in someone. There's trust and there's...well, let's just say I can't see myself EVER marrying someone who thought they had the right to TELL me what to do. Even if it's important, he could ask me, or not at all. And I'd always retain my right to tell him to sod off.

I would imagine that Sohia Rose is from an older generation and a different place. Presumably this would have some bearing on the matter.

AllyWoof
02-06-2007, 06:29 PM
Originally Posted by kborsden
I spend most of my day at home, cleaning and looking after my girlfriend. I have been diagnosed with a severe mental illness, so I can't go out and work. Some days, I can't even leave the house. I do not spend all available time on the computer. Because we don't live together right now, I live in a flat on the other side of town, she lives with her mother, I spend 5 days a week with her and 2 days at my flat. During those 2 days I spend 2 hours, sometimes a little more, on the computer. I'm not having TANTRUMS, I just need to do my thing from time to time.

I know what it is like to be trapped in the house. Glad I am not the only one.

Kate Thornton
02-06-2007, 06:40 PM
I'm chiming in late here, as usual.

I have been married to the same person for 29 years. He's really great in so very many ways: we both despise football and like watermelon...the list goes on.

But my writing, well, he's not really interested. Never has been. He's glad I have something to do, but he's not a genre reader at all. He's very pleased when I have good writing news, but he's very pleased when I have good news of any sort. I sorta feel the same way about his obsession, The Simpsons. (He's the creator of the Map of Springfield) My point is, we give each other time and space to do things on our own but we do not take away from our designated domestic delights or chores.

We worked this out up front with all the other really important things like religion, children and finances.

I would never expect him to ask me to give up writing. I will bite my tongue until it bleeds before I'll ask him to cut down his Simpson watching to less than 3 times a day. But we worked this out - negotiated it.

K, I suspect your Lady is feeling scared, neglected & pregnant. The pregnant part is temporary, so pay a little closer attention to her during this difficult hormonal time. You might need to work out a lot of things right now - make her feel more secure by mutually agreeing on a number of scary things like what life after marriage/baby is going to be like, what role her mother will play in your domestic arrangements, etc. Start planning happily together.

And when you make agreements, stick to your side of the bargain and let her have a little slack about her side. That's how we do it - compromise can make you smile. You'll always be able to write, it's not going to go away because you are passionate about something (or someone - or 2 someones) else. You have infinite capacity for passion, just as you have infinite capacity for love.

Right now, setting the ground rules together is important. Later on, as a New Daddy, you'll be too busy and proud and loving and creative to do a good job of it, so it's important to gain consensus now on how to handle the big things like schedules and diapers and who sleeps when and if either of you can get some down time, writing time or alone time.

You can save the little things, like world peace and political stability, for quiet dinners after the nipper is in college.

K, you are on the brink of a wonderful new part of your life - I am excited about it and I'm not even there! And it will only make your writing richer.

Sohia Rose
02-06-2007, 06:43 PM
I would imagine that Sohia Rose is from an older generation and a different place. Presumably this would have some bearing on the matter.

Well, if you want to call "older generation" born in the early 70s. :) I'm 34 years old from the Midwest (USA). My mom was raised by her grandmother, so I guess that had something to do with it. My husband's 36 years old. He's a great man and a little old fashion, I guess. But we have many progressive qualities.

But this is not about me and my relationship. This is about listening to your partner's needs, and trying to meet them halfway. I will say this. Just because you're physically present with your girl, does not mean you are there with her. :)

scarletpeaches
02-06-2007, 06:45 PM
...I'm in it for the long haul. I think people are to quick to give up their vows. I made my decision. I trust MY judgment and I chose right...

I have no doubt that you did; you're obviously happy with the choice you made, but 'being in it for the long haul' and retaining your ability to make your own decisions about writing aren't mutually exclusive.

No such thing as Mr (or Miss) Perfect, but there is such a thing as Mr Perfect for me, and I don't for one second believe that there has to be a choice of "Do I want to stay married?" and "Do I want to keep writing?"

Insisting that writing comes first, well not even that - insisting that writing is non-negotiable doesn't mean anyone is quick to give up their vows. Just that they are a complete person outside their marriage too - they are not defined by their marital status, but rather, the things they choose to do, be, enjoy.

Writing, for me, is one of those dealbreakers along with not wanting children and not wanting to marry someone with kids or who has been married before. I'm up front about it. This is who I am; this is what I do. You get a certain amount of my time, my computer gets a certain amount of my time. You don't like it, go find someone who'll follow orders and keep house.

I know. It sounds incredibly selfish, but I need time on my own, always have done, always will do. Few seem to question a man's need to go off and do his own thing; women need to stand up for themselves and insist on their right to nourish their own souls too -in whatever way they see fit. Writing, homemaking, working outside the home, whatever. As long as it's for them and no-one else.

I just hate to see anyone, male or female, fall in with their partner so willingly and to have to live with such insulting behaviour as described in the OP. Marriage is a partnership, yes, but there's no need to sublimate one's own personality into that of one's mate just for the sake of a quiet life. That can only lead to resentment and, god forbid, thinking about what might have been.

scarletpeaches
02-06-2007, 06:50 PM
He's a great man and a little old fashion, I guess...

This phrase jumped out at me.

Please, please, don't think I'm picking on your posts! You're happy in your marriage, I don't wish to say anything to patronise or in any way disrespect that.

I think the danger can be, in relation to the topic, that one could do everything for their marriage to the detriment of their own emotional health. Give, give, give is not healthy. One needs to receive sometimes too, and if that comes in the case of accepting that one's spouse is a writer and will not always be mentally present to attend to your every need, then...that's it.

I pick on this subject because where I live there seems to be a number of men who don't want a wife. They want a housekeeper. ;)

Shadow_Ferret
02-06-2007, 06:55 PM
Sheesh! What happened to 'til death do us part? (Although I do believe you said she was your soon-to-be wife?).

Anyway, if my husband said STOP writing today. I would stop. No questions asked because I'm sure he'd have his reasons.
Wow. No way. I don't believe marriage is about blind obedience. If my wife told me to stop writing I'd tell her to go pound sand. I can't think of any good reason your partner has the right to tell you what to do. Married? Yes. But individuals, too. We're NOT one person in two bodies and I think people who give themselves up to another person have self-esteem issues.

We each have our own likes and dislikes and we RESPECT that about each other. She's never tried to change me, I've never tried to change her. THAT'S what marriage is about. Respecting and valuing the DIFFERENCES.

And compromise is about coming to a mutual understanding and MIDDLE ground, not giving in. Not submitting.

As far as the OP, my wife doesn't support my writing (but she accepts it) and she complains that I spend too much time on the computer. But I've learned not to do my writing when she's awake. I spend those times with the wife and kids. After they've gone to bed, then I do my writing. She knows better than to ask me to give it up or even to dis my dream.

Sohia Rose
02-06-2007, 06:57 PM
No harm done. :)

I'm a working woman, not a house-wife, and I (we) don't want children either 'cause we're too busy.

scarletpeaches
02-06-2007, 06:57 PM
Wow. No way. I don't believe marriage is about blind obedience. If my wife told me to stop writing I'd tell her to go pound sand. I can't think of any good reason your partner has the right to tell you what to do. Married? Yes. But individuals, too. We're NOT one person in two bodies and I think people who give themselves up to another person have self-esteem issues.

^^^Said a lot more succintly than I did. :)

Sohia Rose
02-06-2007, 07:02 PM
Wow. No way. I don't believe marriage is about blind obedience. ...

That's what you believe and you're entitled to it. My marriage will be the way my husband and I want it to be. That's what we choose. It works for us.

Edited to add:

My relationship is not about blind obedience. But if a woman chooses this, then so be it. My husband has NOT asked me to stop writing 'cause my husband doesn't sweat things like this. He doesn't think about things like this. But we will run our relationship the way we want. But again, I'm not here asking for relationship advice because I don't need it. My marriage is well. Thank you.

Cav Guy
02-06-2007, 08:25 PM
That's what you believe and you're entitled to it. My marriage will be the way my husband and I want it to be. That's what we choose. It works for us.

Edited to add:

My relationship is not about blind obedience. But if a woman chooses this, then so be it. My husband has NOT asked me to stop writing 'cause my husband doesn't sweat things like this. He doesn't think about things like this. But we will run our relationship the way we want. But again, I'm not here asking for relationship advice because I don't need it. My marriage is well. Thank you.

Some people just like to smack things they don't understand. Sounds like it works for you, SR, and that's what matters at the end of the day.

But to the original question: I've never gotten support from ANYONE when it comes to my writing. Not my family. Not my wife of 13 years. Not my friends. No one shows any interest or real support. Just me. I've come to terms with that and deal with it. It's not necessarily a happy place to be, but it is what it is. I just continue on, hoping to get better.

TsukiRyoko
02-06-2007, 08:41 PM
Many members of my family feel the same about my writing. I'd say just keep on writing, regardless, and now bust your butt extra hard and work towards making your writing go somewhere. If you achieve something and still stick close to your dream, it'll be enough to brush any doubts about you away and into the wind.

Once I was in a relationship with a guy who didn't like my writing. I really did like him a lot (probably one of the few guys I wouldn't mind staying with for a long, long time). One fateful day, he asked me to choose between him or a "stupid story." Shortly after, a BIG argument ensued in which he insulted every story of mine he'd ever read and insisted that my dream to become a writer was completely in vain. I chose my writing (he didn't see this coming), and told him that no relationship is worth giving up something I have so much passion for, and I, rather forcefully, showed him to the door. My morals and standards have always been more than a little abnormal, but I truly do believe that writing is one of the most important things in my life. It's something that's stayed close to me since I was a child, it's helped me through more than a fair share of troubled times, it's kept me from being lonely when I was completely alone (happened quite a few times, actually. By "alone", I don't mean angsty and single, I mean "kicked out on the street for the night with only a notepad and paper".) Nothing and no one can do for me what writing has done.

Have you tried telling your wife-to-be how much you enjoy writing? She probably feels left out or something like it. try to explain to her that, even though she comes first, that writing is important to you? Have you told her about anything remotely promising that writing can accomplish for you (it's okay to elaborate on this one. Sometimes you gotta make yourself sound like a big shot :))? Or, you could go the sucker-punch way and rip a little on some of the stuff she does (a little more immature, but it's WAY more satisfying). Whatever you do, I wish you luck and no matter what, write on.

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 12:26 AM
Wow. No way. I don't believe marriage is about blind obedience. Who said anything about blind obedience. I dno't know if it has occured to anyone but Sohia Rose could be also talking about having such a good friend in her husband and a relationship that she can actually trust and count on his opinions. God forbid, in this day and age someone might actually be trusted but I hear it does happen.

I know of some men and women who blindly obey their spouses wished but I see nothing in her post to indicate that is what is going on in her marriage.

Let's be careful people not to project our own prejudices and problems into someone else' post.

Shadow_Ferret
02-07-2007, 12:54 AM
I guess I've never met ANY human being who I'd so implicitly trust that if they told me to give up something I love that I'd simply do it, no questions asked.

I'm not projecting, I'm just dumbfounded.

Sohia Rose
02-07-2007, 12:55 AM
... Sohia Rose could be also talking about having such a good friend in her husband and a relationship that she can actually trust and count on his opinions...

Yes. That's what I'm trying to say. :)

I don't mean to bash anyone here because I realize that a lot of people have been burned in relationships. So have I. My husband is the ONLY person that I trust with my life and livelihood, because he's the ONLY person that has my best interest in mind.

Sure, we see only one side of this argument, but not her side of the story. And of course, we are supposed to side with the poster because it's the politically correct thing to do. All I'm saying is, are you willing to face the situation if she walks out of that door? Will your writing and the members of AW make you happy in the end? Can you get advice from someone you trust? Who has experience in a working relationship?

Shadow_Ferret
02-07-2007, 12:59 AM
....but Sohia Rose could be also talking about having such a good friend in her husband and a relationship that she can actually trust and count on his opinions.


Yes. That's what I'm trying to say. :)



Well, that's completely different from how it came across. You were sounding more like a Stepford Wife than someone who had married their most trusted friend. :)

cool_st_elizabeth
02-07-2007, 12:59 AM
The last argument went so far, it ended with her telling me what she really thinks of my writing. She thinks it's a stupid dream and that I'll never get anywhere with it.

A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I had three terrible arguments within four days. In the process of one of these arguments, which really had nothing to do with writing, he said that I didn't produce anything. I said, "Oh yeah? I wrote and published two books in the last 15 months?" I didn't even mention the nine articles I wrote & published during the same time period, one of which won a contest, and four flash fiction stories that were published. He said the two books didn't count, and went on to discuss other imagined slights and complaints.

Actually, he is so extremely unimpressed and unsupportive of my writing that I never even tell him about it. At least not the fiction. Some of it, I wrote to blow off steam about him ... turned into a couple of good stories ...

I stay with him for many reasons. I make allowances for the fact that he is disabled & on heavy medications.

Each of us has two working computers, a desktop machine and a laptop. I haven't really gotten used to my laptop so I tend to spend many hours a day in my little office off the living room where he hangs out. If I really want to work on something & not be disturbed, I can take the laptop to another part of the house. If you and your lady are going to stay together, I would recommend at the very least that you each have your own computer.


Best wishes!

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 01:06 AM
'Working' relationship means different things to different people. What works for you definitely would not work for me; that's the way of the world. Different people, different standards.

Like Shadow_Ferret, I'm dumbfounded. I know you said that if your husband asked you to give something up you would, no questions asked, but he hasn't in the case of writing so the issue hasn't arisen. I guess what surprised me was that you said if he did, you would obey.

I don't know how anyone could ask (or tell) someone they love to give up something dear to them, that's all. Do I have friends that I trust that much? I have friends I'd trust with my life, yes. Would they ask me to give something up without explanation? Hell no! I can't see what reason could possibly justify taking writing out of my life.

Just as well it's all hypothetical then! ;)

But anyway...I can only speak for myself and what I would stand for in a relationship. If I had a partner who couldn't understand why I wrote, or did not WANT to understand, or wanted me to give it up so I could devote myself to him, what would I do? Finish with him. No questions asked. I don't want to be with someone who'd expect me to give up something that's for me, just to spend more time with him, when presumably a grown person would be able to fill their own time and look after themselves.

I honestly cannot think of any reason beyond selfishness that would prompt someone to want me to stop writing. However, if we were talking about me simply spending too much time (in my hypothetical partner's eyes) writing and not enough time...oh, massaging his feet and making him a nice dinner...fair enough. Room for negotiation. But complete, unquestioning sacrifice? Never in this lifetime.

Not that I would get involved with such a person in the first place. Like I said before, I'm upfront with the people I meet, so they know what I want and what I don't want and what I'm willing to give - or give up. I'd simply say, "You knew I was a writer when you met me. And NOW you complain when you see how much work goes into it?"

If and when I marry, it'll be to a partner - an equal partner - who doesn't want kids, has no kids, has never been married before, and doesn't expect us to be joined at the hip.

Well...only under the covers anyway. ;) :D

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 01:07 AM
^^^That took so long to type, some of what I've said has probably already been dealt with in intervening posts.

Sohia Rose
02-07-2007, 01:10 AM
I guess I've never met ANY human being who I'd so implicitly trust that if they told me to give up something I love that I'd simply do it, no questions asked.

I'm not projecting, I'm just dumbfounded.

It was hard for me to trust anyone like that before I met my hubby. I always had my guard up, until I realized he wasn't out to get me (like the rest of the dirty scoundrels :tongue ). And it wasn't easy, oh no, I fought all the way. It took a couple of years. Since, I have given myself up completely to him and I don't fight it anymore (okay, I was a control freak too, but that's beside the point). It's wonderful. But I also know that we have an unusual situation (or from what people tell me). I'm supposed to hate him by now. But he is my best friend in the whole wide world and I would do anything for him. Anything. And he would give me the world in return. Because he has. There is NOTHING that my husband and I can't work out. Nothing. Do I love writing more than my husband? Nope. Writing is my hobby (and my job). My hubby is my lifeline.

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 01:12 AM
Oh, stop. You might raise a smile on my face and restore my faith in falling in love. Then where would we be? :D

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 01:13 AM
If I had to choose between James Purefoy and writing, by the way, I'd bin the laptop, no question. :D

maestrowork
02-07-2007, 01:13 AM
Not trying to judge... but...


he said that I didn't produce anything. I said, "Oh yeah? I wrote and published two books in the last 15 months?" I didn't even mention the nine articles I wrote & published during the same time period...

Actually, he is so extremely unimpressed and unsupportive of my writing that I never even tell him about it.

Didn't sound like a healthy relationship to me. There seem to be deceptions, resentment, disrespect and codependency here. Maybe I'm wrong -- probably I am wrong, since I don't know you at all -- but that's the impression I've got.

As much as my parents argue (ALL THE TIME), they are open to each other about everything. I mean everything. There's absolutely no secret. And they are supportive of each other even if they don't like what the other wants to do. They don't tear each other down and ridicule each other. That's something I really admire, despite the fact that they argue about the most trivial things.

stormie
02-07-2007, 01:14 AM
I say 'two' hours, but ocasionally there is an overflow. Mostly I keep the computer on and go back and forth after I've had my time. I'm an obsessive compulsive when it comes to my manuscript.
Aren't most writers? Even reading these forums is a form of writing, in the sense that we can learn from each other. And as for the actual writing, it takes sometimes endless rewrites to get the ms. to where you want it to be.

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 01:18 AM
...That's something I really admire, despite the fact that they argue about the most trivial things.

I'm rather taken with the son they raised. :LilLove:

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 01:24 AM
Yes. That's what I'm trying to say. :)

I don't mean to bash anyone here because I realize that a lot of people have been burned in relationships. So have I. My husband is the ONLY person that I trust with my life and livelihood, because he's the ONLY person that has my best interest in mind.

Sure, we see only one side of this argument, but not her side of the story. And of course, we are supposed to side with the poster because it's the politically correct thing to do. All I'm saying is, are you willing to face the situation if she walks out of that door? Will your writing and the members of AW make you happy in the end? Can you get advice from someone you trust? Who has experience in a working relationship?I get what you are saying :) I unfortunately used to have someone I trusted like that and I got burned but you know it was great while it lasted and I know people who have managed to go their entire lives trusting people and they were so very happy and I have always envied them.

Sohia Rose
02-07-2007, 01:24 AM
Oh, stop. You might raise a smile on my face and restore my faith in falling in love. Then where would we be? :D

:tongue I'll be the first to admit there are a LOT of bad apples out there 'cause I've dated just about all of them. But I wouldn't settle for less, so I was alone (by choice) for a long time. Man, that ain't no fun, puft.

I'm not an advocator of love, because it's hard to find a person who "fits" you. (I hate to use the word "soul-mate"). I mean, I have friends who are three times divorced and they try to offer me relationship advice. Please! Or one of my friends who is in her late 30s, but can't keep a man for longer than five months. Right! :ROFL:

cool_st_elizabeth
02-07-2007, 01:29 AM
There seem to be deceptions, resentment, disrespect and codependency here.

At the risk of seeming to hijack this thread & make it about my relationship instead of the original poster's question ... there is no deception. I just don't mention it when I write or publish something. If he asked, I'd tell him, but I don't take it upon myself to volunteer the information. I have plenty of support from people who read my work & don't need it from him. Codependency, yes, we do have that going on.

Some people just are not impressed by writing. An old boyfriend of mine was a poet, short story writer, singer, and actor. His parents never cared about anything he wrote ... but if he was singing or acting on the stage, his parents were right there in the front row, cheering him on!

maestrowork
02-07-2007, 01:33 AM
I agree. Like I said in another post, I don't expect someone else to care for, or even understand, what I am into. But I do expect civility and, if not respect, at least politeness. No ridicule. If someone says, "Your write?" and laughs, she's a goner or I probably wouldn't have gone out in the first place.

Sohia Rose
02-07-2007, 01:47 AM
I agree. Like I said in another post, I don't expect someone else to care for, or even understand, what I am into. But I do expect civility and, if not respect, at least politeness. No ridicule. If someone says, "Your write?" and laughs, she's a goner or I probably wouldn't have gone out in the first place.

I feel ya. My husband has a hobby that he works on daily (at least 3-5 hours). Even though I'm not interested in it, I'm interested in what he's doing. I make a point to ask him about it at least every two days. He lights up like a Christmas tree and we talk about it for hours. We also talk about my manuscript. I mean, he gets first dibs on looking at it. ;)

Shadow_Ferret
02-07-2007, 02:01 AM
3 to 5 hours daily on a hobby? When do you guys see each other? I'd be my wife's best friend if I didn't have to deal with her for 19-21 hours a day, too! (work, hobby, and sleep). :)

Sohia Rose
02-07-2007, 02:13 AM
3 to 5 hours daily on a hobby? When do you guys see each other? I'd be my wife's best friend if I didn't have to deal with her for 19-21 hours a day, too! (work, hobby, and sleep). :)

My husband is a photographer. He shoots for one hour after work (with my blessing) then he looks at his images on the computer or develops film. We each have our own computers, but our desks are right next to each other. So we converse while I'm writing (mostly editing) and he's editing images. Or he'll say something like, "Look what I shot today." Then I'll comment on it. Or, my favorite night of the week, when we talk politics 'cause I'll read something to him from Time or Newsweek, which will be tonight. :D

Or, we’ll watch movies and yell at the screen: "That's bullcrap. That guy is stupid. He should have gone the other way." Me chiming in, "Yeah, that idiot!" :)

I'm a reporter for a newspaper, so often I drag him out of the bed on the weekends to do photography for me. I can do it myself, but it's just something we do together.

AndreaGS
02-07-2007, 02:20 AM
I'm lucky to have a bf who also writes, and is very supportive. If I need some time to myself to bang out another chapter, he leaves me be, no questions asked. It's nice sometimes to work together, but it seems we often end up chatting.

When I was younger, my parents (mostly my mother) discouraged me painting. Frequent starving artist jokes were made. My mother told me she could never support me - emotionally, financially, or mentally - if I chose to be an artist. Although I know they had my best interests at heart, it was damaging.

They changed their tune once I started getting paid for it. It's awful when you don't have the support or encouragement of the people you love to DO what you love, but you have to keep chugging forward. If you're doing what you love, and it makes you happy, then hopefully your wife will come to appreciate it.

Maprilynne
02-07-2007, 02:24 AM
They changed their tune once I started getting paid for it.

I think it's really sad, but SO many authors have stories like that.

"It's a hobby, it's a hobby, it's a hobby, oh! You have a paycheck for it? Well, now you're an author!"

It's unfortunate.

Maprilynne

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 02:25 AM
3 to 5 hours daily on a hobby? When do you guys see each other? I'd be my wife's best friend if I didn't have to deal with her for 19-21 hours a day, too! (work, hobby, and sleep). :)AHA! so you work with your wife do you? Let me tell you a bit of my history. I was married to my business partner. We started our company together before we started officially dating. In the end...after 15 years...we got divorced and I sold my half of the company to him.

Just a word of wisdom for anyone who might want to hear it....she can not be your Juliet and you can not be her Romeo if you are with each other 24 hours a day and working side by side causes so much tension that should be outside the marriage. So moral of the story...have someone else do either one of your jobs and seperate work from marriage. I don't care how much people think it is going to work...even if the couple stays together...they stop being sweethearts and are partners.

I prefer to be someone's sweetheart.

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 02:29 AM
I know plenty couples who work together. The first I thought of have been married for well over 30 years and are still as much in love now as ever.

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 02:30 AM
I know plenty couples who work together. The first I thought of have been married for well over 30 years and are still as much in love now as ever.
Prove it ;)

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 02:31 AM
I don't have to. You're the one who said you didn't care how much people 'think' it's going to work, etc...you can only speak for yourself, not every other couple in the world who work together.

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 02:39 AM
I don't have to. You're the one who said you didn't care how much people 'think' it's going to work, etc...you can only speak for yourself, not every other couple in the world who work together.are you a part of the couple you are speaking of? Because if you are not, you are on the outside looking in and don't know everything that is going on within that relationship.

My ex and I were prominent in our community and church and everyone thought we were the perfect couple. Little did they know. We didn't believe in airing our dirty laundry in public for the entire world to view. So while you may think they are perfectly happy and let's hope you are right, it has not been my experience that couple who work together have the same relationship as those who don't. I also have had a consulting firm for small businesses and the ones I spoke with had a hard time being partners with their spouse. It takes the bloom off the romance.

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 02:50 AM
The key words were your experience. Please don't judge other couples by yours. You had a bad experience, yes, but that doesn't mean ALL couples would find the same true for them.

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 02:53 AM
The key words were your experience. Please don't judge other couples by yours. You had a bad experience, yes, but that doesn't mean ALL couples would find the same true for them.And I have a vast amount of experience in various countries as well. I am not speaking from just my personal experience. I don't know why you take exception to my giving advice that it is better NOT to be in business with your spouse.

But in any case this isn't getting my work done.

Ciao

scarletpeaches
02-07-2007, 02:58 AM
I didn't take exception to the advice. It was the blanket statement:

"I don't care how much people think it is going to work...even if the couple stays together...they stop being sweethearts and are partners."

As you said to me, unless one is part of a relationship, you're on the outside looking in, and cannot speak for that relationship, whether good or bad. You don't know that EVERY working couple stops being sweethearts, only that you did.

NicoleJLeBoeuf
02-07-2007, 03:11 AM
My husband is a photographer. He shoots for one hour after work (with my blessing) then he looks at his images on the computer or develops film. We each have our own computers, but our desks are right next to each other. So we converse while I'm writing (mostly editing) and he's editing images. Or he'll say something like, "Look what I shot today." Then I'll comment on it.Ta-da! Presenting.... The Work Date!

It isn't necessarily applicable to all relationships, of course. And we, like Sohia Rose and her hubby, are childless, which is a huge amount of freedom. But given a relationship that has a lot of time on its hands and non-overlapping hobbies/interests, The Work Date is a great way to make those two sets of interests cohabitate well.

My husband and I have sometimes taken our laptops off to a coffee shop together, where I'll work on my fiction or my latest freelance gig and he'll work on his current programming obsession. Or one of us will be reading. In any case, we'll often show each other things that tweak our funny bones. When he was learning JSP, he loved showing me the neat ways it fit together; when I'm reading something and I get wowed by the way an author presented an idea, I'll read it to him and tell him what I thought was so cool about it.

Sometimes we've had to tell each other when we felt the other was spending too much time on their obsession. But really, the gripe wasn't too much time on the obsession so much as too little time on each other. When it seemed he was in a different role-playing game group for every night of the week (D&D at so-n-so's on Wednesdays, Mage or Eberron on Tuesdays, Silver Age Sentinels every other Sunday, and watching Battlestar Galactica at another person's house on Fridays, etc, etc, etc), I had to first realize why I was starting to get grumpy--self-awareness is harder than it seems! I started out feeling instinctively angry at his friends, and that wasn't right--and then sit down with him and work out a compromise. We decided that, at that time, the best solution was to designate one night per week as ours, not to be encroached upon by his multiplying social engagements, and really give each other our time that night. Or, now that I'm not working full time, my pledge is to get the bulk of the day's writing done while he's at work so that we can enjoy each other's company when he gets home.

And if in the evening one or both of us is still not done with whatever--usually him, since he's been at work all day, which tends to keep a guy from being able to pursue his own interests--sometimes we make a Work Date out of it so that we can spend time together and still spend time on these projects.

Just a random brain-dump of ideas that have come out of ten years of negotiating this marriage. Mileage may vary. No warranty implied. May or may not apply to the OP's situation. Wishing the OP much luck and patience in working this out.

NicoleJLeBoeuf
02-07-2007, 03:22 AM
are you a part of the couple you are speaking of? Because if you are not, you are on the outside looking in and don't know everything that is going on within that relationship.That is very true. But by the same token, where does that put you in relationship to the couple that Scarlet Peaches is talking about? You're not even on the outside looking in--you're on the internet hearing about it third-hand. You know even less about this couple than she does; she at least knows them personally. You only know of their existence from her posts.

No one here gets to assert that their experience trumps anyone else's. What doesn't work for the Casiopeias of this world may well work for the Scarlet Peaches of this word. Once you start saying, "I don't care what you think, I know better than you" regarding such a very custom-fit field as marriage and relationships, you've crossed a line you should not have crossed. You should stop, think, and step back.

At most, we can say, "This worked/didn't work for me; do you think that could be the solution/problem?" It's up to each of us to determine whether a given anecdote is applicable in our own lives.

I'm going to assume that what you have personally witnessed is true for you, and what SP has personally witnessed is true for her. Some couples can work as a team without sacrificing the romance (co-authors and AW members James D. MacDonald and Debra Doyle come to mind) and some couples cannot. But no one couple is the mold and role model for everyone else, because we're all too different. One family template isn't going to fulfill everyone's needs. That's worth remembering.

ATP
02-07-2007, 05:13 AM
Scarlet and Casio,

From an earlier post on page 1 of this thread. Given your discussion,
it seems appropriate to repost here.

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=42465 (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=42465)
[(writing) spouses working together]

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 05:54 AM
Thanks ATP but I am not interested in trying to prove my point. It is either listened to or it is not and that is just okay by me :)

Shadow_Ferret
02-07-2007, 07:53 AM
AHA! so you work with your wife do you? Let me tell you a bit of my history. I was married to my business partner. We started our company together before we started officially dating. In the end...after 15 years...we got divorced and I sold my half of the company to him.


No. You misread (or I poorly wrote). I was saying if my wife had a 3-5 hour hobby, then because of our jobs, the hobby, and sleep, we'd NOT see each other for 19-21 hours (which I've revised after thinking about it and realize we wouldn't see each other for 21-23 hours) a day.

That would be great. :)

Cassiopeia
02-07-2007, 10:08 AM
No. You misread (or I poorly wrote). I was saying if my wife had a 3-5 hour hobby, then because of our jobs, the hobby, and sleep, we'd NOT see each other for 19-21 hours (which I've revised after thinking about it and realize we wouldn't see each other for 21-23 hours) a day.

That would be great. :)uh yeah...I didn't get that LOL. ;)

dreamsofnever
02-08-2007, 11:32 PM
He's a great man and a little old fashion, I guess. But we have many progressive qualities.

But this is not about me and my relationship. This is about listening to your partner's needs, and trying to meet them halfway. I will say this. Just because you're physically present with your girl, does not mean you are there with her. :)

You know, I'm pretty forward-thinking, but I get what you're saying here. you chose a man who has your best interests at hear and has good judgement. you trust him, and while you would give up writing for him if he asked, you trust him enough to never ask unless there's a very very good reason.

Kudos to you, Sophia. You and your husband are in a great place.

And K-I wish you luck in working this out with your fiancee. I'm glad you two have come to a 'cease-fire' and I think just continued communication is the best way to make things work. And just remember, marriage is a very big commitment, and now is the time to work out whether or not you can make it work. It's not about whether either of you is in 'the wrong' but the most important thing to consider is whether you are compatible for each other-are you able to meet her emotional needs, and vice versa? I think it would be good for you two to sit down with a counselor to work this out. Sometimes it helps to have a mediator there, and the focus of that session should be "this is what I need from you, and this is what I can do to fulfill what you need from me."

I wouldn't suggest making a decision lightly to turn your back on the relationship or to turn you back on writing. Remember, anything you love will take work, and there will be bumps in the road. The test of that love is how you handle the bumps along the way.

Again, good luck with all of this.

MMcC
02-09-2007, 12:10 AM
I hope I don't offend with my response, but I don't think this is about your writing so much as the kind of person you are sharing your life with.

Anyone who speaks to you that way is being both unsupportive and cruel, and that's just unhealthy. It wouldn't matter what the topic was, although clearly your passion being dismissed and maligned is extra painful.

It's time for a heart to heart. Somebody who can be that nasty has anger issues, judgment issues, and needs to have a wake up call. This is not somebody I would want raising a child without help on the issues.

Cassiopeia
02-10-2007, 08:13 AM
The one thing I want to point out here and I am sure I won't win any popularity contests for it is this: No matter who you love or who is in your life, you do not live your life for them. You do not follow your dreams for them. YOU do NOT need their approval. So if you remove from the equation the need for validation from your spouse or Significant Other, you remove any power they might have over you in this situation.

Do we expect our loved ones to approve of everything we do? And if so what sort of emotional predictament are we placing ourselves in. While it is nice to have support and something in common with those we love, it is healthier in the long run to depend on ourselves for validation and the fulfillment of our dreams.

crazynance
06-11-2007, 07:47 AM
I [having been married almost 25 years ] think that there has to be a balance between the interests of each half of the couple, but there are definitely periods of time where it seems unbalanced to the outside world. Scarlett got it in one: if I may paraphrase: since everyone is an individual and each couple is therefore doubly individual, things that work [or don't work] for one couple may not [or may] work for others. There's just no basis for comparison. For instance, there's no way that most women would live in my marriage - but there's no way I'd live in theirs either. *shrugs* Got do what works for you.