Married to a feminist
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:01 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Married to a feminist

Anybody else in this boat?

For me the part I'm working on is striking a balance between been in charge and manning up and having her have a perceive notion of maintaining equality. It doesn't help that my wife has a very dominate personality. However, when I do strike the right chord her reaction is second to none.

A little background:

About 5 years ago my wife and I were on brink of calling it quits. My wife became increasingly distant (sex went from 2 to 3 times week to once of month if that), she started working on her appearance, and became secretive. All huge red flags of cheating. I acted in desperation and being in IT it was very easy for me to check her phone, txt, browser, chat and email history. I found out she had been talking to an ex. They hadn't physically done anything yet but I had work travel scheduled soon and they were planning to meet up during the time I was away.

I called her out on it. Immediately left (went to a friends house with the idea that the marriage was over). She eventually came to me profusely apologized and admitted that yes she was planning to have an affair with the ex. That led into one of those all night conversations where we talked about everything in brutal honestly at the end we came out of it that the relationship was worth salvaging. However, we needed help and went to counseling.

Counseling was good for us and our marriage vastly improved as we managed to work out several issues. However, I kept feeling like something was missing. In my opinion I was doing everything right. We had a very "equal" relationship but the spark was really there and her being a feminist that is what she wants right?

Then came the aha moment.

We were camping at a music festival with a couple dozen friends. Weather was awful that week as it rain most of the time. The second day we were there my wife and I along with all our friends were riding out a thunderstorm rolling through under this huge 40 x 50 tarp shelter we erected. That's when this intense series of gust of wind came threw and knocked half the shelter down. I immediately started barking orders telling everyone how to get the shelter back up. My wife was almost like my first officer as delegated out to her to be in charge of taking care of the hurt. We eventually got the shelter back up and only suffered a few injuries but the party kept going. Everyone was super nice to me and from that point forward. All our friends deferred to me for the rest of the festival before making any group decisions.

My wife reaction was something else. That night we had amazing sex (like when we first met type sex) despite us being in a tent with our friends only a few feet away. Even though our marriage was much better at that point I hadn't seen a reaction like that in years.

I realize something that day what she said she wanted from me was in direct conflict from she found attractive in me. In order to satisfy her need for equality I was emasculating myself.

It's been 6 months since that day. I still struggle to maintain that balance of been modern man and taking charge to rev her up. I find humor sometimes the best tool other times I listen to what she has to say but I make decision anyway. Sometimes it works other times she's gets upset about it but usually gets along with it anyway.

Any tips or stories from you guys out there in the same boat would be greatly appreciated..
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:08 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

I have no idea how to deal with this. It is confounding. I know exactly what you mean.
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:18 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

We handle this issue by having different areas in which one or the other is dominant. I think of it as going with our strengths. I am the planner, scheduler, detail person. My husband is the big picture guy, handles the finances, lightens me up when I get too serious.

If you frame the discussion between feminist and beta guy, you both lose. Think of it as each contributing their strengths to the marriage, and it is win-win.
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:46 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

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We handle this issue by having different areas in which one or the other is dominant. I think of it as going with our strengths. I am the planner, scheduler, detail person. My husband is the big picture guy, handles the finances, lightens me up when I get too serious.

If you frame the discussion between feminist and beta guy, you both lose. Think of it as each contributing their strengths to the marriage, and it is win-win.
For us we are both Alpha personalities no question about it. I question if she actually wants to be equal let alone Alpha in our relationship. She says she does but she doesn't actually react to it positively.

I've come to the conclusion that she wants her opinion and input valued but at the end of the day when it comes to the house and our relationship she was me to take charge.

She tells me one thing but reacts positively to the complete opposite. It think she is content in being Alpha at work, with her friends, and everything else except our relationship.

Does that make sense?
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:51 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

Yes, it does. However, I don't understand what you mean by her wanting you to take charge of your relationship. Can you give examples of this? I think things work best when both people respect each other, and important decisions are made jointly.
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:58 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

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Originally Posted by ontheball View Post
For us we are both Alpha personalities no question about it. I question if she actually wants to be equal let alone Alpha in our relationship. She says she does but she doesn't actually react to it positively.

I've come to the conclusion that she wants her opinion and input valued but at the end of the day when it comes to the house and our relationship she was me to take charge.

She tells me one thing but reacts positively to the complete opposite. It think she is content in being Alpha at work, with her friends, and everything else except our relationship.

Does that make sense?
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:08 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

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Originally Posted by lovesherman View Post
We handle this issue by having different areas in which one or the other is dominant. I think of it as going with our strengths. I am the planner, scheduler, detail person. My husband is the big picture guy, handles the finances, lightens me up when I get too serious.

If you frame the discussion between feminist and beta guy, you both lose. Think of it as each contributing their strengths to the marriage, and it is win-win.


This is just like our marriage. My husband is a silent math genius type and I am a social butterfly. Guess who makes more money and handles our finances?

I love the way equality has never been an issue, despite the income/education disparity. My husband values my emotional contribution the way most women are thrilled to wear a large engagment ring; he says I taught him to be aware of his feelings.
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

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Yes, it does. However, I don't understand what you mean by her wanting you to take charge of your relationship. Can you give examples of this? I think things work best when both people respect each other, and important decisions are made jointly.
I don't mean "my way or the highway" if that was the case she is not the type of person take that. She would be long gone, trust me.

When it comes to the BIG decisions we always talk through figure things out together. That part is never going to change. I'm talking about all the little decisions happen in the day to day.

Let me illustrate a common discussion when getting mutual buy in goes awry:

Me: what do you want to do tonight?
Her: I don't what do you want to do?
Me: Don't you like going "A"? Do you want to do that?
Her: I don't know is that what you want do?
Me: If that's what you want to do?

And so on and so on.. Which just sets a bad tone for the night.

My approach is now very different. Instead of worrying constantly about what she thinks I'm just more decisive like I am with every other relationship in my life. For example the same conversation with a different approach:

Me: Any ideas about tonight?
Her: Not really.
Me: I think we should go to "A" it will be a lot of fun.
Her: Sounds OK but what about "B."
Me: "B" is OK but I think we should really do "A." I tell you want we will go to "A" and if your right we will leave early stop on the way to "B" by that frozen yogurt place you really like.
Her: (grudgingly) OK. Sounds like a plan.

Usually taking the second approach where I am more in charge. Will work out better and end up having more fun.
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:09 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

Concerning women, (re)Actions ALWAYS speak louder than words.

Don't get so hung up on "feminist" or equality talk, ESPECIALLY ESPECIALLY ESPECIALLY in any sexual relatoinship!

Beyond basic respect of course, mostly treat the "perceived notion of maintaining equality" much as a well disguised "sh!t test" and tings will continue fall into place rather easily.

No matter what the words say, her (re)actions will tell you the truth.

I wish you well.
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

Men and women are equally different.

Equal pay for equal work.

Respect each other equally and accept each other for what they are.

Attend to one another's needs and accept that those needs may be different but all are important and valid.

That's my idea of feminism.

If I don't wear a bra my boobs hurt so I'm not into burning my bras. Plus they are expensive. Especially the Wonder Bra.
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

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Originally Posted by ontheball View Post
I don't mean "my way or the highway" if that was the case she is not the type of person take that. She would be long gone, trust me.

When it comes to the BIG decisions we always talk through figure things out together. That part is never going to change. I'm talking about all the little decisions happen in the day to day.

Let me illustrate a common discussion when getting mutual buy in goes awry:

Me: what do you want to do tonight?
Her: I don't what do you want to do?
Me: Don't you like going "A"? Do you want to do that?
Her: I don't know is that what you want do?
Me: If that's what you want to do?

And so on and so on.. Which just sets a bad tone for the night.

My approach is now very different. Instead of worrying constantly about what she thinks I'm just more decisive like I am with every other relationship in my life. For example the same conversation with a different approach:

Me: Any ideas about tonight?
Her: Not really.
Me: I think we should go to "A" it will be a lot of fun.
Her: Sounds OK but what about "B."
Me: "B" is OK but I think we should really do "A." I tell you want we will go to "A" and if your right we will leave early stop on the way to "B" by that frozen yogurt place you really like.
Her: (grudgingly) OK. Sounds like a plan.

Usually taking the second approach where I am more in charge. Will work out better and end up having more fun.
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:19 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

Ah, I see what you mean. If one spouse is indecisive, the other should take charge and choose a course of action.

How are the big decisions made, such as if you move for one person to change jobs, or what kind of house you have?
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:22 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

I don't see the issue here. What am I missing?
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:25 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I don't see the issue here. What am I missing?
She wants him to be the Man in her marriage.

Easy.
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Old 11-18-2011, 12:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Married to a feminist

The feminist secretly craves the alpha male. If she is responding more positively to your alpha traits, then her secret is out.
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