Monday, March 28, 2011

The One Way Street of Compromise

"A Compromise is an agreement whereby both 
parties get what neither of them wanted."
~Author Unknown

"Swearing was invented as a compromise 
between running away and fighting." 
~Finley Peter Dunne

We all have our moments. Our irrational, childish moments where whoever is trying to tell us what to do is the devil and we are just sticking up for our rights. I believe this is an argument used by every teenager around the globe, though I am not sure what they quote in other countries, here it is often the first ammendment. I still haven't really seen a decent discussion as to whether or not anyone under the age of 18 actually has that right, or any right for that matter, because while they are "people" in the eyes of the law they are kind of still property ergo the ammendment is not one they can rely on, but I digress.

In marriage the inner teenager has a way of showing its ugly head every once in awhile. You try to state your opinion or desires in a way as to convince the other person you are right but every once in awhile they are not inclined to see anything from your point of view. Let the compromising begin. What I have discovered amongst most of my girlfriends is a simple fact, a compromise of any sort means it went "your way" and the only way it becomes the guy's way is if it is entirely done as they wanted it with absolutely no alterations. I can see the merits in the argument, but I find it stacks the deck unfairly against my side as then it seems I "always" get what I want because 4 out of 5 times we compromise. This is not "my way," this is the adult way. All in all it usually works out fine and there is not a second thought about it. And then there are the times when it is NOT okay.

These are the times when I regress to the childlike person who should not be allowed to discuss anything with anyone because it will end badly. These are the times when it suddenly hits me that it is NEVER my way, but rather a version of my idea mixed with some of his and I am not longer happy sharing the common ground. I wish I could find the giger counter on that moment. Heck, I am sure most of the male population would like one of those, because it is usually just one sentence too far, one small dismissal that suddenly sets off the inner teenager and getting her back in her room is rather difficult. My husband and I see eye to eye on most things. We usually have a great dynamic and we really don't argue. But he avoids conversations like the plague so when this irrational girl feels dismissed it becomes an epic fail in the area of compromise. Funny thing is by the end of the conversation I don't usually get my way nor am I pushing for it, I just want to be heard. I want him to see it from my side of the compromising tilt-a-whirl...of course he says he does, but I don't think he really gets it. Then I wonder, why does it matter if he understands my side?

Finally you reach the inevitable conclusion that compromise is a thing we all settle for but all the things you think of your mate are true of you as well. We are in essence self centered people, our realities live in our heads, how could we not be? So when you finally accept that it isn't a specific desire of the other person to ignore your way just a matter of perspective you find things go much more smoothly. Of course that doesn't stop that inner teen who just wants to scream about how unfair life wish you could tell her it will always be that way and she would actually listen. That "fair" is also a matter of perspective and life is a wild and bumpy ride, full of adventure, frustration, and doing things differently might just be good for you.

No comments:

Post a Comment