Author Topic: Etiquette and your spouse  (Read 7037 times)

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Tea Drinker

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #15 on: October 02, 2013, 07:07:32 PM »
The thing is, yes OP could have been kinder, but her DH could have too: "Are you glad?" after a thank you left her with the bad choice between sharing the unhappiness and lying. "Don't you like these?" or "did I get the wrong thing?" would have left a lot more room for "I'm glad you thought of me, but the only cut flowers I like are roses, carnations, and daffodils" or "but yellow roses are my favorite."

My advice for the future, though, would be yes, say thank you if someone brings you cut flowers (assuming you aren't actually allergic), put them in a vase, and then throw them away once the guests have left. That will save you significant clean-up, because no petals all over the table or floor, and has less chance of someone else seeing the vase and thinking "oh, Danika must like daisies" and making a note to bring something you dislike. The friend's pleasure from giving you that bouquet isn't diminished by its being thrown out after they leave, because they won't even know.
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shhh its me

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #16 on: October 02, 2013, 07:14:03 PM »
I agree that honesty between spouses is important.  Actively trying not to hurt the other's feelings is also important. 

That's why I really don't understand that he bought you flowers knowing you don't like them and then expected praise like a puppy learning to sit. 

I think I might have answered his "Are you glad?" question with "I'm glad you were thinking of me and wanted to get me something nice."  and saved the conversation reminding him of your preferences regarding flowers later.
I'm not sure what OP meant by I rarely like roses ...... if that means she on even very rare occasions buys flowers for the house and of course she graciously accepts flowers from other people.  I can understand why a husband might think she had changed he mind about flowers.

I think this is what happened. DH saw the other flowers already in the house and thought that maybe my stance had changed. When in fact, it was the opposite. The existing bouquet was starting to annoy the heck out of me, but I felt bad throwing a sort of living thing away, like it was disrespectful to the poor flowers, as if they have feelings. He saw it as a green light to buy me flowers. But I was already super annoyed with the existing ones.

I didn't say I rarely like roses. I said I rarely like flowers in the house. We have roses in the backyard. I always love the roses on the bushes. Always. And when I see the bouqets at the store, they're nice. I might buy a bouquet of roses once every three years. And then once I get them home and they've been on my counter for 48 hours and they're drooping, I get really irritated and feel like I wasted $10-15. So I'll hit my limit of flowers in the house and not want any again for many many months.

Now, I regret coming across too harshly. I remember I threw in a few more "I really appreciate the sentiment. I really appreciate the thoughtfulness" several times. But I think shhh its me is right that after DH heard me say "No" he didn't hear anything else.

Yes that was that part I was referring to  likes flowers indoors rarely and only roses and the couple others.

Rose

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #17 on: October 02, 2013, 07:16:54 PM »
I think it is in the same realm as "do these jeans make my butt look big ?" 

TootsNYC

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #18 on: October 02, 2013, 08:09:05 PM »
The thing is, yes OP could have been kinder, but her DH could have too: "Are you glad?" after a thank you left her with the bad choice between sharing the unhappiness and lying. "Don't you like these?" or "did I get the wrong thing?" would have left a lot more room for "I'm glad you thought of me, but the only cut flowers I like are roses, carnations, and daffodils" or "but yellow roses are my favorite."


There's LOTS of room to answer "are you glad" without either lying or making him unhappy.

"I'm so touched that you brought me something."
"I love you."

It's wrong to focus on the flowers--it's the THOUGHT that counts, and that's what the OP should have been focusing on, not on the actual stuff. Stuff doesn't count, to Etiquette. The thought does.

And his thought was, "I want to give a surprising, romantic gift for the woman I love. Flowers are beautiful and romantic; I'll buy those."


The poor guy made a loving, generous, thoughtful, stereotypically romantic gesture. He wanted the moment of closeness that the stereotype says men get when they bring their wife flowers. That's what he was asking for.

I wonder if the OP knows whether her distaste for the flowers showed.



Piratelvr1121

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #19 on: October 02, 2013, 08:15:20 PM »
I can relate to not really liking having flowers indoors. Live flowers, anyway. I've done that before and they do end up wilting after a bit as well.  Well, that and I'm an herbicidal maniac.  Fortunately DH knows this and has rarely bought me flowers.  Actually the last "flowers" that came into this house were silk flowers from Hobby Lobby.  Now those I can deal with.  Don't have to water, they don't wilt or drop petals and the cats won't try to eat them.  :)

If you don't mind silk flowers for decoration, perhaps at some point, when this has died down, plant a bug in your husband's ear that an arrangement of silk flowers, like your favorites (I love daffodils, too!) would be more worth his money since they'll stick around longer. That is, if that is how you feel.

Perhaps if you do see a silk arrangement you do like (again, if you would be fine with that), dropping a hint such as "Now those are the perfect flowers, last forever and don't need watering!"
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cabbageweevil

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #20 on: October 02, 2013, 09:04:51 PM »
I've been married to my DH for a long time. He forgets stuff like that. Men often get bombarded about the "give her flowers" idea. There's even a song! So sometimes they fall into the stereotype. That doesn't have to mean anything. It can just mean they forgot, or they love the "official language" of love themselves.

TootsNYC also writes: "he wanted the moment of closeness that the stereotype says men get when they bring their wife flowers".

A bit OT; but I (male, and to be honest, never into spontaneous flowers-getting-and-giving), am reminded of a moment in an espionage thriller, read long ago. It involves a grouchy old (male) spy and a contact, meeting for the first time, to transfer information. For recognition, one of the two is wearing a flower of whatever -- pre-arranged -- kind, in his buttonhole. When they meet, the veteran looks balefully at said flower, and remarks, "I've never understood this obsession some people have, with the reproductive organs of vegetables."  That line has always cracked me up.

miranova

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #21 on: October 02, 2013, 09:56:42 PM »
The thing is, yes OP could have been kinder, but her DH could have too: "Are you glad?" after a thank you left her with the bad choice between sharing the unhappiness and lying. "Don't you like these?" or "did I get the wrong thing?" would have left a lot more room for "I'm glad you thought of me, but the only cut flowers I like are roses, carnations, and daffodils" or "but yellow roses are my favorite."


There's LOTS of room to answer "are you glad" without either lying or making him unhappy.

"I'm so touched that you brought me something."
"I love you."

It's wrong to focus on the flowers--it's the THOUGHT that counts, and that's what the OP should have been focusing on, not on the actual stuff. Stuff doesn't count, to Etiquette. The thought does.

And his thought was, "I want to give a surprising, romantic gift for the woman I love. Flowers are beautiful and romantic; I'll buy those."


The poor guy made a loving, generous, thoughtful, stereotypically romantic gesture. He wanted the moment of closeness that the stereotype says men get when they bring their wife flowers. That's what he was asking for.

I wonder if the OP knows whether her distaste for the flowers showed.

Hmmm.  While I agree that the OP could have said "I'm touched that you thought of me", I think she actually should add "but I actually don't enjoy flowers".  I would much rather know this than continue to buy flowers for someone for 50 years.  A marriage is different from other relationships.  We should be able to tell each other what we like and don't like. 

Personally, I can't stand stereotypical romantic stuff.  I hate sappy girly movies, (I'm looking at you, The Notebook), I don't particularly want love letters, I like other, weird, nerdy type stuff.  If I had never expressed any of this, sure my husband would get HIS feel good moment but I'd never get mine.  I'd never get that feeling of "yay! someone gets me and got me exactly what I really wanted instead of what I'm supposed to want as a girl". 


lorelai

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #22 on: October 02, 2013, 10:56:13 PM »
I also suffer from allergies and although I think flowers are pretty I definitely want them out after a day. Your post inspired me to tell my DH preemptively that I don't want flowers since they make me so physically miserable.  :D I could see myself getting cranky and responding in the same way, otherwise!

Danika

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2013, 11:05:32 PM »
Personally, I can't stand stereotypical romantic stuff.  I hate sappy girly movies, (I'm looking at you, The Notebook), I don't particularly want love letters, I like other, weird, nerdy type stuff.  If I had never expressed any of this, sure my husband would get HIS feel good moment but I'd never get mine.  I'd never get that feeling of "yay! someone gets me and got me exactly what I really wanted instead of what I'm supposed to want as a girl".

OP here. Yes, The Notebook! DH and I often mock Message in a Bottle because it was so depressing. And for Christmas one year, he bought me amplifiers and a subwoofer for my car - which is exactly what I wanted. That's why I was so shocked that he bought me flowers. We've known each other for over 25 years, since we were children, and he knows I've never liked getting flowers as gifts.

miranova

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #24 on: October 02, 2013, 11:09:18 PM »
Personally, I can't stand stereotypical romantic stuff.  I hate sappy girly movies, (I'm looking at you, The Notebook), I don't particularly want love letters, I like other, weird, nerdy type stuff.  If I had never expressed any of this, sure my husband would get HIS feel good moment but I'd never get mine.  I'd never get that feeling of "yay! someone gets me and got me exactly what I really wanted instead of what I'm supposed to want as a girl".

OP here. Yes, The Notebook! DH and I often mock Message in a Bottle because it was so depressing. And for Christmas one year, he bought me amplifiers and a subwoofer for my car - which is exactly what I wanted. That's why I was so shocked that he bought me flowers. We've known each other for over 25 years, since we were children, and he knows I've never liked getting flowers as gifts.

Not familiar with Message in a Bottle but I pretty much got yelled at by a bunch of girlfriends for saying I hated The Notebook.  Actually, I could enjoy watching it if I can mock I the entire time.  But obviously, that's frowned upon if I'm with people who are trying to enjoy it.   ;)

EllenS

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #25 on: October 02, 2013, 11:13:46 PM »
Applying my DH's and my communication style to your circumstances, when DH asked "are you glad?" I would have just given him a great big hug and kiss, and said "I love you so much, you made me feel special."

Then, tomorrow, I would say, "hey, honey - remember when you brought me a big bunch of balloons?  Balloons are my favorite, I love it when you do that."

Honesty in a marriage is important, but you live in the same house.  You don't have to do all the honesty at the same time.

Of course, my DH is totally onto me, so he would then say, "You didn't like the flowers, did you?" but by that time he would not be offended because he got 3 positive reactions first.
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TOLady

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #26 on: October 02, 2013, 11:39:14 PM »
I think that DH in question was, in asking ... are you glad...  looking for praise and did not receive the reception he was seeking.


I have always disliked cut flowers - always, always (especially the death flowers (mums, daisys) - with the exception of purple or blue orchids, which can last for weeks.

My DH, then boyfriend, bought me a bouquet of flowers for a Hallmark Holiday (jacked up prices beyond belief etc) and was rather proud of himself.

I thanked him, put them in a vase and then asked him to never, ever, ever buy me flowers again.

He was ASTOUNDED, to say the least. He thought that every woman expected to have flowers sent/received on these holidays and couldn't understand why I did not want them.

I explained that I did not want something that he wanted to show as our love to wilt and die so soon (as well as the jacked up costs), and would rather have something that lasted.

In the spring of the next year, he bought me as a surprise, a beautiful hybrid tea rosebush that to this day (15+ in the ground) gives out hundreds of gorgeous blooms during the summer. The scent is heavenly and I walk out the door in the morning and see his love for me.

BTW - what was strange, was that his dad has only ever given live plants to his mom. DH explains that she and I are alike and that he should have met me earlier and spent alot less on flowers on the girls before me  :D




GrammarNerd

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #27 on: October 03, 2013, 12:33:49 AM »
I don't mind flowers when DH gets them for me, but sometimes I just think he should have saved the money.  And he usually goes to the grocery store florist b/c it's the most convenient, so it's more like 'I got milk and eggs, and hey I got you some flowers too!'  Yeah, uh, if he's hoping for major brownie points, then it has to involve more than just walking by the grocery store display.

It was kind of a joke for a while that I only got flowers if I needed him to make a late-night run to the grocery store (and he would see the flowers there and get some).  So one year for our anniversary, I got a call from the receptionist (security locked building) that there were some flowers waiting for me, but she didn't know how they got there, they didn't look like they'd come from a florist delivery, etc.  I retrieved them, and recognized MY vase.  It was our anniversary, and it turned out that he'd taken a vase from home, stopped off at....of course, the grocery store, put the flowers in the vase, and walked in after one of the employees and left the flowers for me.  But the problem was that there was an awful windstorm that day, and the flowers took a beating on their way in.  By the time I got them, their poor little blooms were bent over and were looking straight down.  They were pretty much on death's door.

I called my DH and thanked him, and then asked if he was trying to tell me something by giving me dead flowers for our anniversary.  ;D  He blamed it on the windy weather, but also said that I should take them back b/c regardless of a little wind, they shouldn't look as bad as they did.  My coworkers and I laughed about my dead anniversary flowers all day, and I did end up taking them back to the store.  The look on the floral guy's face was absolutely priceless when I presented him with the flowers, told him that my DH had bought them that morning and had given them to me for our anniversary.  They were pretty obviously dead by that point, and he apologized profusely and just about fell over himself trying to get me live flowers. 

ebelie

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #28 on: October 03, 2013, 01:03:24 AM »

I think this is what happened. DH saw the other flowers already in the house and thought that maybe my stance had changed. When in fact, it was the opposite. The existing bouquet was starting to annoy the heck out of me, but I felt bad throwing a sort of living thing away, like it was disrespectful to the poor flowers, as if they have feelings. He saw it as a green light to buy me flowers. But I was already super annoyed with the existing ones.

That's what I was going to suggest.  I guess that gives you freedom to complain more about flowers in the future? 

I think it's better to say something than pretending you like them, or glossing over not liking them.  Maybe you could have made a bigger point of how much you've enjoyed receiving balloons from him in the past, but I think it was an awkward conversation that had to happen at some point. 

Maybe you could get him something nice in return now, to help make up for it?  Not that I think you were at fault, but to help him feel better about his mistake.

Miss Understood

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Re: Etiquette and your spouse
« Reply #29 on: October 03, 2013, 01:22:48 AM »
I have a similar problem with my DH.  When I was in law school, he got into the habit of sending me a beautitful bouquet of roses (from our wedding florist) at the end of every school year.  I loved the flowers and loved that he did that for me.

[When I say "sends" he is ordering flowers from our florist - we do live together but it's a surprise when they arrive.]

Fast forward some years - he still sends flowers and I need to deal with them!  I love that he thinks of me (and the latest floral arrangement was beautiful and pretty unique) - but honestly I would prefer no flowers.  I don't love keeping the cats away from the flowers, nor the cleanup when the petals start to fall.  Then it's time to throw the whole arrangement away and I have to deal with that.  I would love to institute a "no flowers" policy in our household but DH would feel bad so I don't.