07 Jun
I Have Emotional Needs, Dumbass!

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My husband and I have been married for 5 years now , and known each other for 3 years before that. My husband has been a very nice guy , but we have had our fair share of ups and downs. He is a guy’s guy and most of the times does not understand my emotional needs, me being of the type who would still remember the time and date of all our firsts, and how it felt. So given our totally different emotional IQ’s ( mine at the top level and his probably negative ) I feel emotionally deserted , but have learned to cope with it and being very mature about the disparity between my emotional needs and my husband’s total lack of the ability to provide to the extent that I need.

But I want to know if my husband crossed a line , when he made a tennis date to play tennis with his buddies (which he plays twice a week ) , on our 5th wedding anniversary ? We both work full time and get home only by 5 P.M, so am I being a clingy , needy emotional , bitch if I expect that we can spend at least the evening of our 5th anniversary together , even if it’s as simple as eating Chinese take out and watching a crappy movie —together ? Or should I be okay with the fact that he will go to play tennis with his buddies for 2-3 hours after work ,and we get to spend the night together ? He has never been very enthusiastic abou celebrating anything , even his birthdays . But isn’t this just wrong ? Or am I the crazy one here ? I don’t think I know anymore if what I feel is right or wrong when it comes to such things because I have been accused of bein too needy for such romantic stuff , but is this asking for too much that my husband sped at least the evening with me on our anniversary ?


Love Set


Dear Love,

When I started reading your question, I had to pause several times to prepare a divorce action against my husband.  Because, like your husband, he is very unsentimental and remains totally dry-eyed through the elimination rounds of Project Runway.  It’s like being married to a stone or something.

I suspect that both you and I knew what we were getting into.  When we married the Strong Silent types, we knew that we wouldn’t get a lot of misty-eyed serenades and that we were fine with it. But we get to call exceptions.  We all have things that are important to us, and it is not unfair to ask our beloveds to honor them.  So if you want your anniversary acknowledged by spending it with your husband: tell him.  Tell him without accusations, without the “you always” and “you never”.  Tell him that you would like to spend the evening of your anniversary together and leave it at that.

You ask if it’s wrong for him to plan on tennis with his friends on your anniversary or if you’re the crazy one in the relationship.  I’m not falling for that.  Because I believe that there are no relationship rules that I, or anyone else, can impose on your marriage.  Some couples vacation separately and don’t celebrate their anniversary and it works for them.  Others project perfect Hallmark moments of togetherness and yet their marriage is in trouble.  Only the two of you know what works for you.  And my sage advice is for you to tell your husband.  And then, please call mine and see if you can get him to muster some sympathy for those Project Runway rejects.

Happy Anniversary!


15 Responses to “I Have Emotional Needs, Dumbass!”


Comment by Rachel.

I don’t think it is out of line to expect your husband to spend time with you on your anniversary. However, you knew his attitudes towards holidays/special dates when you married him so it shouldn’t be too much of a shock this happened. You need to develop some ways of communicating what you want and need without whining or sounding demanding or accusatory.

He isn’t someone who thinks birthdays and anniversaries are important so getting angry with him that he schedules other activities on those days is useless. You need to sit him down, tell him what you would like to do on whatever holiday is coming up and make solid plans. Don’t leave things up to him or to chance.

It sounds like you didn’t have plans on your anniversary and were secretly hoping he’d make them. Guess what? If he hasn’t in the eight years you’ve known each other, he probably isn’t going to start without some serious intervention. Plan what you want to do, tell him what the plans are in a nice way and don’t wait until the last minute. If he is a good husband and your suggestions aren’t crazy (a trip to Paris for you birthday might be overkill) he will go along with it and hopefully enjoy it as well. You just need to be clear what you want and need.


Comment by Cheryl.

My husband is quite the opposite and it drives me insane. I’m the one who shuns celebrations. Since I didn’t always feel that way about some of them, it’s hard for him to accept that my priorities have changed.

I get that he wants to do all the shoulds and the Hallmark things but really, it’s pretty much garbage to me.

We do talk about this stuff to keep the elephant out of the living room. I agree with Marinka. He is who he is, you knew it going into the marriage, let him know how you feel. Just don’t expect miracles. Change takes time.


Comment by writingmama04.

Great advice – we complicated girls always get our feelings hurt when our guys can’t read our minds. I’ve been married almost 17 years to a wonderful man – but he will never really get what is going on in my head if I don’t tell him. This he freely admits – so speak up!


Comment by Christy.

I’m sure he did not realize the date when he kept his tennis schedule! He just said “see you next week, did you book the court?” all in the same sentence. Say to him, “Could you please get a sub for next Tuesday? That is our anniversary and I’ve made dinner reservations for 6:00 p.m.” He’ll have a brain burp and then say sweetly “of course honey, no problem”. Then text him at 5:00 pm and REMIND him!


Comment by dusty earth mother.

Brain burp or not, tell him that you would like him to reschedule that particular tennis game. If he asks why, say “Because it’s our anniversary and I would like to spend it with you. ” And try not to add “Dipstick” at the end of the sentence.


Comment by slhenrici.

It is pretty interesting reading this post and everyone’s comments. I go through some of the same feelings with my husband.

I get so frustrated when I cook something special and he says “It is good.” with as much emotion as he would say “I am taking out the garbage.” It is so hard to read what he really thinks. I try to hard to find more meaning past those simple words. I have to remind myself, those words are EXACTLY what he thinks.

He is wonderful, not overly dramatic, and extremely supportive. Funny part is that his not being dramatic used to drive me crazy, until we really had to deal with some bad news.

Our 20 month old daughter has been diagnosed with a genetic condition. The day we heard the news, I thought I was going to collapse. As I stared in shock and dangling over that precipice of despair, my husband is the one who pulled me back. He kept a level head, asked pertinent questions, remained calm, and loving supported me.

I am so thankful he didn’t react emotionally, I would have jumped from that precipice if he had. I needed my ROCK – and he was there! He managed to get all the important information from the doctors, because all I could hear was a ringing in my ears that threatened to take over. He talked with me later, after I recovered, with facts, research, and a logical plan to move forward.

I think that is why we choose men who are different from ourselves. We need them to be there when we can’t hold it together. A team has complimentary members, if we were all exactly alike nothing would get done! I thank God for my husband, and his ability to be my ROCK.

Missed anniversaries, birthdays etc are annoying, but if he is there when it is really important – that is what makes a marriage!

Lara Reply:

What a wonderful lesson. Thanks for sharing it.


Comment by Erin I'm Gonna Kill Him.

I was going to say that he had better rise to the occasion for your 5th wedding anniversary, but then I reminded myself that my husband gave me a mother f-ing vacuum.


Comment by annie.

It may be redundant but I’m going to agree with the others that you have to make your feelings known- in a non-nagging way. As much as we’d like our husband’s to be mind readers, we have to accept they never will be. Make dinner reservations and tell him you’ll pick him up from work on the way. Then buy yourself a fabulous gift and tell him thanks. Special occasions are great but it’s really the day to day interation that makes the marriage.


Comment by Heather, TMH.

What? You people. Make him wear a tin-foil mind-reading receptor on his head. Then’ll he’ll know what she wants!


Comment by HellTygr.

The key is communication, but the key to what depends on WHEN you communicate.
Recipe for a fight: telling him *after* the anniversary that you wished he’d have done it differently.
Recipe for *possible* change: telling him that while you understand a lot of anniversaries are silly (the 3000 minute anniversary of your first kiss comes to mind, yes a friend of mine actually worked that out in high school and wanted to spend that entire minute kissing her boyfriend… don’t ask), *this* one is important to you, and you’d like to spend it together, so would he please reschedule. Then you need to make sure that you indeed remember this the next time something that’s important to him comes along, no matter how stupid it is. 🙂


Comment by LadySteele.

Love Set,

If I didn’t know better, I would accuse you of being married to my husband!

I’m with the others. If acknowledging your anniversary with the guy you swore you’d be married to for the rest of your life is important to you, then you’ll have to spell it out to him. I say acknowledging, because let’s face it, there won’t be any celebration, at least not on his part, because that’s how he’s wired.

Consider yourself lucky that at least you won’t have to pony up extravagant gifts for birthdays, fathers day, or trivial little days like your anniversary. You’ll never be slighted for not pulling out all the stops on a day that he considers signficant, because to him, there are all pretty much the same.

I would spend the evening with him, even if it’s just Chinese food from a box, then spend the night reminding him about one of the reasons he married you. Then take yourself out for a spa treatment or for an extravagant lunch with a girlfriend. Both will remind you how lucky you are to have a guy who is still around for the 5th anniversary…


Comment by Plano Mom.

He will never ever read your mind and do much special without your asking. And if you ask the wrong way, he will be a butthead about it. And if you want, you can also send him this: http://www.fullersjewelry.com. Tell him to ask for Ken. He knows all about the right thing to do, so you can have your tennis and your wife too.


Comment by Karin.

my opinion is that he knows that stuff like that is important to you just like you know that it’s not that important to him so he needs to make an effort too. If it’s all one-sided effort – you not getting mad when he doesn’t remember something that’s important to you – resentment will build. That’s the give and take of marriage.

Now, I would have no problem with my husband going out on our anniversary so long as he planned something for another night around that date. (see that compromise?)


Comment by Kiandra.

Well I’m the wife here and I’m told constantly that I’m more like a “man” than a woman.

I forget our anniversary date every year. (yup shame on me) I don’t like to cuddle, or chat after sex.

Really my opinion on anniversaries is this……it’s just another day. Make every day of your lives special in some way or another. Why pick one day of the year and create drama over it??

Seriously………no wonder I’ve never had any female friends. (sighs) I’m a woman and can’t handle being around most women. (eeesh). I just count myself lucky I wasn’t born a man.

Think about it…..if your significant other was dying of some incurable disease would you be making a fuss about your wedding anniversary?? Put things into perspective. Enjoy life and choose your battles wisely ladies!!

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