On major issues like finances, religion, long-term and short-term goals, children, housekeeping, relational roles, etc, is there an ideal to which you should aspire?
Is there room for dissonance between two people, or are differences of opinion on major issues destined to cause trouble between partners? I've always felt that with communication and mutual respect, differences of opinion on these issues can be effectively dealt with. Am I wrong? How in-line must one be with a partner?
[This message edited by abbycadabby at 9:05 AM, September 11th (Wednesday)]
"Sometimes it takes a good fall to know where you really stand."
I wouldn't want anyone exactly like me, of course... but I'd like to have the big stuff in common. And like the Empress said, communication and respect are huge, no matter how alike (or not) you are.
[This message edited by wildbananas at 1:24 PM, September 11th (Wednesday)]
Do not back up. Severe tire damage.
There's a great article on baggagereclaim about shared values vs. shared interests. I think that shared values are really important -- and much of what you listed are shared values.
For example, I am frugal with money. I don't deprive myself, but I live within my means and make sure to save a lot for retirement. I couldn't be with someone (long-term) who had nothing saved for retirement, was in consumer debt, etc. I know I'd come to resent him.
I could deal with different levels of messiness as you can hire a cleaning service.
Married: 11 years, no kids
The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark. -Michelangelo
Values we are pretty much matched. We have the same end goals. We may not have the same exact way of getting there, but we want the same things in life.
We have the same end goals. We may not have the same exact way of getting there, but we want the same things in life.
[This message edited by NaiveAgain at 7:16 AM, September 12th (Thursday)]
Religion - totally different. Politics -- we're totally different. We discuss things respectfully but I don't expect to change him and he doesn't try and make me believe what he does. We have great, interesting conversations. I respect him as a person so I respect his thoughts on these topics
Finances are trickier. We are similar but not identical and he throws a monkey wrench in to things once in a while.
Relational gender roles...well that's been interesting. I'm the opposite of the women in his past. He's learned to like it. He has also learned to express himself when that difference makes him uncomfortable. I tell him when he's being unacceptably old school IMO. We fell in love with the people we are. I remind him sometimes that he fell for a woman with a career not a stay at home, domesticly gifted type of gal. That isn't going to change.
We fell into our roles pretty naturally. He does nearly all of the cooking. I do most of the laundry. However, there are no 100% his job/my job type of things. If the laundry isn't done and he wants something clean, he washes it. He doesn't make me feel guilty for not having it done. I can make myself dinner if I want something he doesn't cook. No big thing.
For us it comes down to respect.
“Many of us crucify ourselves between two thieves - regret for the past and fear of the future.” -foulton oursler
Thank you all for your interesting responses and perspectives!
aesir- this is just an example, but if one of my long-term goals was to, say, move to Alaska or something, and my SO was confined to his current locale for various reasons, then the relationship would hardly work long-term. That's all I meant (long-term goals of one partner that would affect the other partner in some way)