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Saturday, December 8, 2012

Christmas with a boyfriend or fiance - oh the dramedy!

Things have changed for me a great deal in the past year.  I got engaged in June.  And I really thought it was no big deal only now I had a ring.  And of course all that dating around and wishing to have someone special is now over.  Well, I was wrong.  It's very different!!
The first thing that changes is that you now have to negotiate where you will spend your holidays.  This last Thanksgiving, I flew out with him to meet his family in Colorado.  And this is going to be a regular thing.  There were lots of surprises in store.

First off, the house where we stayed was in disarray.  One of his relatives has become quite a hoarder since she became ill a few years ago.  It's all too difficult to organize.  But this is beyond that.  Every room had a pile of something in it.  The laundry had clothes strewn all over it.  My fiance jibed her, "Ah, yes, the yearly apology for the mess."  Questions?  Watch Hoarders.

Secondly, they had pets. Of course, if you didn't know, I'm horribly allergic.  I love them.  I grew up with them.  But considering the condition of the house, it wasn't exactly freshly vacuumed.  I don't know if you have allergies, but it starts out small.  A little itch.  Some sniffles.  Stuffy nose.  Red eyes.  Next thing I know I am itching constantly all over my entire body.  I can't sleep.  I feel hot.  Anxious.  I wake up with my heart pounding.  Sure enough, the next morning there were cat hairs all over the comforter.  And of course someone said, "Oh, I hope it didn't bother you that the cat got into the guest house."  Well, yes, actually it did.  Horribly.  You can't hide it from me.  I'm not making it up.  I felt terrible asking them to please wash all of the sheets and the comforter (which was no comfort at all).  But I couldn't hide it really.  I asked my fiance, "Were we together when I told you about my dying black kitty and that I let him on my bed and ended up itching horribly even after I had made the bed OVER where he was."  His answer?  "Yes.  I'm sorry I forgot to tell you they have pets.  Yes, people, I'm allergic to wool, down, angora, fur, horses, cats, and dogs.  And God knows what else.  Questions?  Answers can be found using homeopathic allergy treatments or benadryl for extreme cases.

Their itchy-cute dog misbehaves.  They blame the dog for this.  Of course it must be the dog.  They had previous pets who were absolute angels.  I can promise you that the fondness of past pets means they never compare to the old pets.  I can't emphasize enough that you have the dog you want by the things you do.  Even when you think you aren't training the dog, you are always training the dog.  I spoke to that dog firmly, but sweetly and had that dog respecting me, sitting when I said, waiting for me to open the door while he sat, going through the door on my command, lying down when I said, and staying off of me.  I even stopped the dog from snapping treats out of my hand.  Everyone was in shock.  I just told the dog what I wanted and he did what I asked.  And, no, you don't have to have a battle of wills.  When the dog had enough and didn't come when called, I let it go and ignored him.  Then resumed the next day and he was happy to do what I asked.  If you need a good book on the subject, please read "People, Pooches, and Problems."  They speak dog!  Great book.

Some of the kids were horribly rude.  How do you deal with snotty children who aren't yours and have no respect for others?  Well, unfortunately, it's not like dealing with the dog.  One of these snotty kids wanted to jump on the trampoline and the safety net was broken.  I told him it was broken and he proceeded to tell me that he could jump on it whenever he wanted.  I said to wait for his uncle and he went to the trampoline anyway.  I wouldn't have dreamed of such a thing.  So I went to his mother that there was something not right with the trampoline.  Instead of forbidding him to jump on it until it was fixed, she told him to only jump in a small part of it.  She was more interested in texting her friends on her iPhone most of the time we were around her.  Parents, this is the wrong choice.  But then, it's clearly the child's fault that he's inherently snotty rather than respectful, right?  Don't get me started on my fiance's college-aged niece who could barely be bothered to speak to us - or any adult for that matter.  Questions?   Don't refer to James Dobson's parenting books as he is a dog beater and a pervert.

His entire family has horrrrrrrible table manners.  I should have guessed this from dealing with my fiance.  People were using their fingers to eat things that weren't meant to be finger food.  And for some reason people were using their fingers to push food onto their forks.  You use a knife.  That is disgusting.  My cousin broke up with someone over that saying that he really ought to use his knife rather than his fingers to push food on his fork.  (No, I'm not your mom, but I know what I like.)  I know my family certainly has problems, but, seriously.  We're just loud and fun.  And the table manners my parents have taught me, well, they have slipped in their old age.  Eating politely is a lost art.  But, then, people have always had issues.  In fact, when showing the poor they often purposely show them with very bad eating habits because it reflects on their lack of "education."  This isn't book smart, it's finishing school smart.  Questions?  Read Emily Post.

We fought about what time to be at the airport.  We ended up sitting at the gate over two hours early.  There is nothing that peeves me more than waking up at 7 am for an 11 am flight.  Our commute was easy with no traffic at all.  It was all a breeze.  There is nothing quite like being at the airport 2.5 hours early!  Questions?  Oh, crap.  I like to be early, too.  But he wants to be earlier.  I'm sunk.  I told him it was a tiny airport and that we wouldn't have problems with security.  Maybe he has to learn to listen to me.  Maybe I need to learn to skip breakfast and eat at the airport.  It's just completely different from how I was raised.  My dad never wanted to eat at the airport because he thinks it's all too expensive.  Plus he only likes Carl's Jr. (Hardees) when they have the 2 Famous Stars for $3.

We fought over navigation.  He handed me maps on our way home and when I made a mistake, he told me I was a terrible navigator and complained about the last time I made a mistake.   I told him, "Hand me maps I didn't make from a town I've never been in and never give me a chance to look at Google.  The freeway was right in front of us.  There was no problem with going the way I told you except that we would have driven through the city on the freeway instead of around it on a toll road."  He thought that the toll road was better so he could avoid traffic.  "It's Saturday.  There wouldn't be any traffic on a Saturday!  You've been here for the past ten years for Thanksgiving and you still need a map to get to the airport.  Who's the terrible navigator?"  he grumbled some form of apology.  He then missed the airport exit.  When I'm alone I just roll with the punches.  Questions?  No answers.  Looks like this might be an ongoing sore spot.

And now Christmas is just a few weeks away.  I wonder what horrors it will hold!?  How is it having a significant other for the holidays?  Get the stars out of your eyes.  It can be one big pet peeve.  At least for some of it, I can pop a benadryl.

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9 comments:

Anonymous said...

uhhh congratulations?

Emily said...

The #1 complaint I hear from guests at any home or venue is about cleanliness and freshness of refreshments and snacks. I kind of had a wake up call when my parents came to visit when I didn't make enough time to clean up the house. I also had a friend who ate steak with his hands in a restaurant. Needless to say, that and other behaviors were an indication that our friendship was headed towards a demise, but I bet you money that he probably found himself a girl to marry.

I also had another friend (believe it or not this person is college educated and a professional) who pretended not to know arithmetic and passive aggressively dug out change from their pocket (I want to keep it anonymous and gender neutral) when it came time to split the check and proceeded to invite themselves to sleep over at my place whilst hobbling in a drunken stupor and bothering random people for a smoke. So, I have experienced minor and major irritations due to lack of etiquette.

However, when you marry someone, you marry his family. I would have to say that as long as there isn't a long history of abuse or criminal behavior, just roll with it, take benadryl and be thankful that you are not unhappily single like you were before.

SavvyD said...

I had a female friend in college who ate steak with her hands. She was hot, so she got away with some pretty rude behavior. Oh how I wish I were totally hot so I could b an absolute beyotch every once in awhile and get away with it - I know - not so Christian - but I can't help it that I sometimes want to let loose.

MarkyMark said...

Just keep in mind that you're not only marrying the person; you're marrying their FAMILY too...

MarkyMark said...

Oh, and God HELP the poor SOB who's about to marry you! That's a big time train wreck in the making. I predict you'll be divorced in five years, at most...

SavvyD said...

I predict Marky Mark will never marry at all.

MarkyMark said...

Savvy,

You're under the mistaken impression that I GIVE a rip! No, I love my bachelorhood, thank you very much. I have peace and quiet when I come home. I do what I want, when I want, how I want; or, I do nothing at all. In any case, I don't have anyone NAGGING me about anything, interrupting my sleep on a Saturday morning, or bitching at me to get to bed when I'd rather stay up late online.

What's more, there are more guys like me all the time. I hang around two, fellow bachelors. One was married before, and he will NOT be making that mistake again! The other one has never been married, and he has no intentions of walking down The Aisle of Doom. He has a business, makes good money, and he does what he wants. He has a nice collection of cars, to which he added a nice, 2000 BMW Z3 roadster over the weekend; uh, he didn't have to get Wifey's permission, either. He has a house, a gun collection, and a kick ass home theater system. When I asked him about marrying, he asked me: why would I want to risk losing at least half my stuff? Why, indeed?

As for me, I have NO DEBT WHATSOEVER; my house, student loans, and car are all paid off. I'm not rich, but I do okay; how many Americans can say they're debt free? I have a small collection of motor scooters. I plan on starting a gun collection. Uh, no, I don't need Wifey's permission for that, either-ha! So you tell me: WTF is in it for ME or any guy to get married? What benefits do WE get out of the deal? I know, and I rest my case!

Have a good night now. I have to check my laundry...

MarkyMark

SavvyD said...

With the right kind of attention and good relationships skills it doesn't feel like such a burden.

SavvyD said...

He has a business, makes good money, and he does what he wants. He has a nice collection of cars, to which he added a nice, 2000 BMW Z3 roadster over the weekend; uh, he didn't have to get Wifey's permission, either. He has a house, a gun collection, and a kick ass home theater system.

Sounds like a totally materialistic person who cares more about things than people. However if you marry someone who actually *SHARES* your interests it's not so burdensome to have a relationship.