My Husband and I Are Polar Opposites

No seriously. He had to have been born on another planet because we seriously are two different species. Cut from a different rug. Not brothers from another mother. Nope. We are two very different people and a few nights ago, we looked at each other and said, “How do we still like each other this much?” It really is one of those questions that is difficult to answer.

We have been together since May 8, 1999. Yes, seriously – we started dating in an entirely different century. We were high school sweethearts – met in parenting class and never looked back after that. Our relationship was a typical high school relationship. One built on being smitten by each other and finding time when we could to sneak off and make out. You know, young love and all that jazz.

Over time, our relationship changed and we changed as people. We saw some rocky times and we broke up twice in the early years but one thing that always astounded me was how much we continued to like each other, even through everything we experienced.

As we were growing up and dating, a lot of people told us that we may grow apart and that our interests will change and that who we were in our teens wasn’t who we’d be in our twenties and wasn’t who we’d be in our thirties. We got a lot of advice and feedback in this area but we maintained our faith in our relationship. Regardless of what would happen over the years, we’d stay together and we’d figure it out.

I have never really felt those differences creep into our relationship until recently. We’d always been two very different people but we also maintained enough similarities to keep the glue holding us together and leave us feeling confident in our relationship. Recently however, I’ve found that our lifestyle changes and life choices are making us become even more different than each other and we’ve had to really work at it lately. Not something we’re used to doing at all.

The biggest change of late is with Steve. He decided a few months ago that he was going to start training for a marathon. He loves to run and he had done a complete 180 when it came to his self-care (he wasn’t very nice to his body before but that’s a whole other post) so he decided to change everything in this area. Overnight. Without warning.

I woke up one day to a husband who no longer ate what I ate, who trained four-five days a week and who was very health-conscious. We no longer did dinners together (as we weren’t eating the same thing ever) and I found myself feeling less supported by him in that area. Previously, if he was making lunch or dinner, he’d offer to make me something too (while I worked) but because we’re on two different diets, that never happens anymore. We are also doing the baby-hand-off often while I go from work to Willow and he from Willow to training.

It’s challenging because there are so many changes all at once and it’s presenting itself everywhere in our lives. Popping up and forcing us to figure it all out… deal with the changes… and, somewhere in all of this, maintain us. Maintain our relationship and keep us interested in each other.

I’m not going to lie, some days are hard as I feel guilty/judged for eating ice cream while he eats almonds and power bars and when I don’t take my daily vitamin, I feel like I failed him when he asks if I’ve remembered but the beauty in all of this is that we’re talking more. We’re figuring things out together. And most of all, we’re trying. We’re not giving up and saying, “Well… guess we just don’t have anything in common anymore, time to move on to greener pastures.” Nope. We’re sticking it out, sticking to the vows we’ve made and we’re making it work.

One thing that is super helpful is that I’ve started to run again too. I’m also motivated to eat better because he is and that isn’t a bad thing. I’m also 100% in support of him doing his marathon and Willow and I will be there, with tears in my eyes, cheering him on at the finish line and tossing him power gels at the 25-30K mark.

Have you ever felt this way in your relationship? If so, what did you do to help things improve? Leave your advice in the comments below!

Comments

  1. says

    OMG, yes! Les and I are complete opposite! How we ever found and stuck to each other after 13 years sometimes totally boggles me! But I agree with you. We have had tough times, and always found the light and managed through it. Not everyone may get our relationship, but we do and that is what matters.

    I feel I can relate where you say it is work to willow for you and willow to training for Steve. I find we are similar with me kids to – OVM/work, it is something that for the past 5 years we haven’t been used to, but is important to me, so he makes it important to him too.

    Love the post Erin! :) xo

  2. Cheryl says

    Ok girls I can so relate to this as there are no two people more opposite than me and my hubby…we have been together 34 years, married for 25 and some days I look at him like he is a complete stranger…like how on earth did we manage to hook up and stay together this long. He is quiet, a homebody and me, well I’m not so quiet and like to always be on the go. He likes to fish and hunt and well lets just say the only fishing and hunting I do is fishing for some gossip and hunting for a great bargain, ha. But as much as we are opposites we balance each other out, he calms me down and I make him more fun :) but at the end of the day I realize it’s all about family, no matter the ups and downs, laughs and tears we will always be there for each other. Family is the most important thing to us both, our kids are the glue to us. Some days I look at him and remember why I fell in love just because of something as simple as watching him with the kids…we disagree, we laugh, I cry but we are still friends after all these years and as long as he keeps saying “yes dear” to whatever I want then everything will be just fine :) I think the biggest challenge is yet to come though when all 3 kids leave home and we find ourselves alone just the 2 of us, what the hell will we do then! guess I’m going to have to take up fishing, or maybe he will take up shopping, or maybe we will just have to accept the fact that opposites really do attract each other!

    • says

      LOL Cheryl, I love your comment and I’m laughing because this will TOTALLY be my husband and I when Willow gets to be a bit older and when she eventually moves out of our house. We’re going to look at each other and probably say, “Who the heck are you!?” and then carry on together, as we always have.

  3. Kim O'Brien says

    I’ve been with my husband for almost ten years – we started dating when we were 17. Life has been one punch in the face after another for us, and we have both changed enormously many times over. Growing up is hard, even harder when you’re doing it with someone else in mind. It’s not easy, but it’s okay. I’ve always found the trick is to be open to each others’ interests, even if we’re not into it ourselves. I may not LiKE video games, but I always know what he’s playing, how the game is progressing and I let him talk about it because he wants to share that with me. And he has no clue about art, but he always checks out my latest piece and encourages me because he knows how important it is for me. We don’t always share interests, but we let each other share our interests. It keeps us sane, in touch, connected, no matter what life throws at us.

    You’re talking about diet and how you don’t eat the same stuff anymore. I’d be curious to ask why not? After what I’ve been through, I decided to become a vegetarian. Ryan would never agree to giving up meat forever. Never. But he knew this was important to me. I have watched him try recipe after recipe just because he knew how much I love cooking and that I wanted to share my new experiences with him. He still buys meat, eats bacon and eggs on his day off, orders double pepperoni pizza and refuses to eat tofu (not great anyway!). But if I’m making something vegetarian, he tries it and isn’t afraid to like it. Veggie “ground beef” tastes exactly the same as the real stuff – so spaghetti, shepherd’s pie and tacos are still on the menu! and I don’t make recipes I know he’ll hate – nothing with mushrooms or tomatoes, that I eat on my own. Basically, this is the long way of saying : don’t knock it til you try it, and if you miss dinner time with your man, there is always room for compromise, whatever the dietary changes. If it were a question of allergies, you wouldn’t hesitate, right? Approach it that way, and you may share at least a few meals a week together again.