Monday, July 13, 2009

Stuff I Can't Say

My husband is a truly wonderful man and I'm very grateful that he thinks about doing nice things for me. That having been said, though--well, have you ever been given a gift you aren't too excited about or had someone do something "nice" for you and would have preferred they hadn't?

Yes, I know it's the thought that counts. But do you know what I really hate? I hate feeling critical of a gift or a thoughtful act--it makes me feel like I'm a mean person, and then I don't like myself very well. ARGH! Do you know what I'm talking about?

For instance, these lovely roses Hubby bought me for our anniversary.


Beautiful, aren't they? But I have to wonder why he picked this peachy/pink color. They don't go with anything in our house. And I know he didn't pick them for the meaning of the colors. He just picked them because they're a beautiful color. And they are! But I can't help wishing they were red or white or yellow--it seems like these are the one rose color that doesn't look so great in our home. And I feel guilty for thinking that.

The other day, Hubby was sweet enough to make cookies for me--one of my favorite kinds: peanut butter.


Except he burned them. He always burns cookies. He's a wonderful bread baker, but cookies? Nope. So now I have a bunch of my favorite burned cookies. And I feel like I should eat them because he made them for me--but they don't taste very good and they still have calories. And I feel guilty for not getting a big glass of milk and choking them down.

Remember I mentioned Hubby cooked dinner for our anniversary? Yes, I think it was very thoughtful and sweet of him. But you know what? For some reason he doesn't actually SEE messes. He thought he'd cleaned up the kitchen this morning, but take a look at the stove:


See the grease all over the front panel? There was other stuff like that too all over the kitchen. When he left the house today, I got out the cleaning stuff--I did it when he wasn't around, because I felt guilty for feeling I needed to clean up after he'd already cleaned.

I wouldn't actually SAY any of this stuff to him because I wouldn't want to hurt his feelings and, like I said, it's the thought that counts--I'm tickled he thinks of doing things to make me happy. But I hate how I make myself feel sometimes!

Does your spouse ever buy you the "wrong" gift or do the wrong thing for you? How do you handle it when that happens?

44 comments:

Anonymous said...

life is too short to worry about the color of the roses. and cookies? are you kidding me? those would have already had a place on my hips girlfriend.
I also have a hubby that cooks and I feel if he can cook, I offer to clean up. then he can do his thing and I wont fret about the condition of the kitchen.
sounds like you have a keeper. we all have different views on things. If we always told someone the exact thing to get us what a boring life this would be. surprises are nice and especially nice when they come from the heart.

Eileen said...

Gee Whiz, girl, not everything has to be so color co-ordinated in the house, Especcially when it comes to flowers. Just sit back and enjoy the beautiful roses and eat some of those luchous cookies. I can;'t see burnt on them. Just be glad you have him and cooking , too.

Owens Family Adventures said...

I'm gonna take this post in the spirit in which you intended and play along. :) My hubby buys me really thin...really delicate jewelry every once in awhile. I love it that he thinks of me but all the jewelry I wear is clunky and "durable". I end up either breaking what he buys or putting it up cause I'm scared of breaking it. As for cooking?? When he cooks I tell myself that it's worth the dishes cause the man can cook like no ones business! and then I give a sigh as I look around my poor poor kitchen and get out the scrubbers.
hugs to you!!
dawn

ABamaMom said...

I wish I had more space to write, because I do know how you feel. We put everyone else first, make sure they are comfortable, well fed, and see that everything is the way they want it. But when it comes to us, it's kind of an afterthought...half-a**ed. And we're allowed to gripe about it...'they' would!

Terry said...

I suppose I can understand how you feel, sort of. But my husband doesn't buy me flowers, so I don't have the chance to be unhappy about the color. My husband doesn't bake cookies, so I can't complain about them being burned. And my husband doesn't cook, so I can't be upset about a little mess he left. Guess I can't understand how you feel after all. :0/

cockermom said...

Hey Ladybug, I do understand what you are saying but I want to tell you..I married a man like yours a few years ago (thoughtful but just a bit 'off' the mark, if you know what I mean? Anyway, I wouldn't trade him for anything because I know his worth! My first marriage was not so nice, not only did he not care, but he didn't even try to pretend that he cared. So you take that man and give him all you got cause he deserves it!
Hugs and Good Wishes to you

Beth said...

Let's talk sometime about the fake roses mine bought me for Valentine's Day from CVS a few years ago . . .

JoyceT said...

Instead of feeling guilty about being so critical of an obviously considerate and loving husband, why don't you just STOP being so critical. As the saying goes, "Stop and smell the roses!"

Anonymous said...

Sounds like stress is catching up with you my dear!

Maybe you're just irritated about the little things rather than dwelling on big things you can't fix. Anyone that's been through a family illness, job loss, etc. can certainly relate. I know I do.

Don't feel guilty. You're just human for a day rather than Superwoman...

Patty S.

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Anonymous said...

I know exactly what you mean - I am married to the same man! I have many friends whose husbands wouldn't think of buying them flowers, let alone do any cooking(!) so they think I should be grateful for what I've got. But sometimes I have to wonder about the presents he buys me - does he have me confused with someone else? If it's the thought that counts, then why didn't he think about the fact that I NEVER wear orange?! And yes, I feel guilty about my feelings. Just being honest to you - I would never tell him. Because underneath it all I know he loves me, and it's just his way... ;-)

Anonymous said...

I'm with Terry-my DH doesn''t buy flowers, cook, or bake, so those aren't issues I have to cope with, but let me tell you, there are others!!LOL Lighten up a little on yourself-you are allowed to feel what ever you feel, as long as you don't hurt him due to those feelings. You do so much for others, let him do for you once in a while, and be glad he does!! Have a great day, you deserve it. Hugs, CAthy T

Anonymous said...

PS- flush those cookies one at a time and he'll never know you didn't eat them! Be creative! Hugs, Cathy T

Anonymous said...

Kim,
All these things are truly "man" things. I have one just like yours. He truly does not see the grease on the stove. So, I just thank him for cooking and clean the way I like when he is out of the house.
Kathy B

Lady of the Cloth said...

I know what you are saying about the flowers. I don't like red roses and have said so may times. When DH buys me roses which is VERY rare, they are red, because his grandma liked red. I enjoy them anyway because I don't get them often and they really are pretty. As to cooking, well, I would do anything to get a break from cooking. My DH doesn't even boil water and as to little surprise gifts. NEVER HAPPENS. These are the kinds of things we have to suck up and learn to appreciate even if it grates on us. I don't think most men think past the "get her a gift" part to what is really most meaningful. They just are missing that gene, I'm afraid.

debby said...

Mostly, I just say thank you and give a great big smile. Until he wanted to buy me a Coach pocketbook. Waaaaaaay too expensive a gift to give one who adores her hand-made quilted purses. So I took him aside and said "you can never go wrong with a little blue box".

Julie in the Barn said...

Yep, same stuff happens here. And, yep, I feel guilty when I secretly wish he would have just skipped his gesture. So I won't critisize you or offer advice. I agree with Kathy B. I think it's just a "man" thing so there's nothing I can do or say to change it. But I don't eat the burned cookies.

Amy R said...

You have a kindred spirit in me. We are as we are, and they are as they are. Everyone is so o.k. with accepting them for how they are, yet condemn us for feeling as we do. You aren't feeling this way out of malice, yet you feel it nonetheless. At the end of the day, we resolve to accept ourselves as we are and continue to strive to improve ourselves as best we can. Hang in there. . . Amy, who rewashes the dishes every morning after her husband "helps" and washes the dishes the night before (and then I clean the stove too)

debijeanm said...

Kim, I have three years of posting here about my kind husband and his "thoughtful" gift-giving. The worst? One year he wanted a sport-watching chair (outdoor) for Christmas. I had already bought all I was going to buy for him that Christmas (and I knew he would never use that chair, that it would be just one more thing cluttering up the garage forever) so I decided not to buy it. He had money and could buy it for himself it he wanted it. What did he do? That Christmas my gifts were tools I would never use: a cordless drill too big for my hand with a huge battery on the bottom that makes it impossible for me to control; a lazer leveler - I had asked for one that I could hold in one hand, he gave me one that had to be assembled on a stand - that I've never used; AND TWO OF THOSE CHAIRS! To make it worse, he had my sons put their names on the chairs to make it look like they gave them to me. I opened the first box, slid them across the room and said, "Oh, these are for you." Sometimes even nice guys are jerks. And this nice guy "don't see dirt," which gives him leave to not do ANYTHING around the house, even though I still work full time and he is retired.

He gives me flowers about once every three years (Valentine's Day and Mother's Day are commercial plots to be protested by not indulging). When he does I'm thrilled, whatever the color. They're only there for a few days so who cares if they match or not.

BTW, thanks for the therapy.

Orcsmom said...

Well, be lucky he did not give you a half acre bug sapper for Mother's Day. He is such a romantic!! ROFL!! See ya Wednesday!

Pam

Chris said...

Seems like a lot of anonymous answers! I don't think men can see grease and such. They also can't see when they've left the house a mess. One year before Christmas I saw a commercial on TV for a "new fangled" mop. Guess what I got for Christmas? I got a mop and a bathrobe! Well, I have not let him forget how disappointed I was. He used to do my gift shopping on Christmas eve, but he has gotten better over the years and puts a little more thought into it now. He also made cookies once, that the dog would not eat, so he doesn't try that anymore. Thank goodness!
Chris

Mumzie said...

Kim,
"Don't Sweat the Small Stuff"...and it's all small.
Also, since I'm married to his brother, I'm not going to comment on this one.

dianne said...

well now ... i am no longer married to the eXman - so maybe i shouldn't weigh in ...... nah - i'm gonna anyway ... i don't think that it is wrong to expect someone who has known you for 29+ years to remember your favorite flower - and what color it is - or to realize that you don't leave grease spatters and smears in the kitchen and so he shouldn't either - or to put down the toilet seat because the last thing you need in the middle of the night is to land butt first in a pot of ice cold water ... we make far too many excuses and cut way too much slack for "man" things ... they CAN do better and they SHOULD do better ... HOWEVER - most of the people who have commented said they wait till their men are gone and then clean up behind them, but do not verbalize how they feel because they don't want hurt feelings - the bare minimum is better than nothing at all ... men are FIXERS - if you don't TELL him what you need then he cannot be expected to fix the little things that add up and up and up to boiling over ...... as for the cookies - you could try putting a bit of butter on the top of one and microwaving it for 10-15 seconds - it might soften it up and make it edible (and if that fails, take them to work with you - they'll probably be gone before morning break)

Mary on Lake Pulaski said...

Answer to 1st question + yes. Answer to 2nd question = yes.
Answer to 3rd question = after much practice, I keep it stuffed inside so as to not have him quit doing these nice things.

Liz said...

I do know how you feel! But, it's all about love, my dear. I keep my mouth shut (well, most of the time!), eat the cookies, and clean up when he can't see. And I know he's done the same for me! And all the comments have been very interesting!

Sharon said...

I'll trade you. Mine doesn't buy me flowers, cook or bake cookies. He does nothing for me and very little for himself. Everything I do he criticizes. Count your blessings. The roses will be faded soon, clean the stove, and sneak the cookies out of the house a few at a time. Actually, they don'tlook burnt to me.

AnnieO said...

I am preserved on film on a Christmas morning complaining about a gift DH gave me. I had told him I just wanted some slippers for Christmas, any color except pink would be fine. Guess what word he remembered of that statement? Yep, PINK. So I am on video saying "You KNOW I hate pink" on a Christmas morning, LOL. I exchanged those icky pink slippers for some turqouise ones. He's not the best gift giver and knows it, but he's thumbs up in every other department and treats me special every day.

Julia said...

It is just like when my husband took all the plates from different parts of the cupboard and put them all together on the very top shelf.
HE was trying to help, but the plates were placed where they were as I used them. AS it is, I can't use any of them because I can't get them down off that top shelf. There are 2 different sets of china that are mine and some adorable gingham checked plates that I love to use. I am afraid of heights and can't climb on the chair and I am afraid of any of the china from slipping thru my hands. That top shelf was only for the very awful antique china that was my grandmothers that I would never use. She made me promise not to sell it, ever. I wish she gave it to my sister! I am doomed to Mary Engelbriet dishes forever.......

Anonymous said...

1. at least you got roses.

2. it sounds like you have a very thoughtful hubby.

3. the way I "handle" things like this is... being grateful and NOT posting it publicly on a blog!

Gran said...

Holly Molly did you strike a nerve!

"I try not to take myself too seriously and often write tongue-in-cheek--if you think I might be joking, I probably am!" quote from your profile.

I'll look for you in the funny pages toots!

Chocolate Cat said...

I am hearing you loud and clear and a particular christmas present springs to mind - a muffin maker!!! Great - cooks 4 at a time in 12 minutes, I can get a whole tray in the oven in 3 minutes!!! Years later when unused it went in the charity bin he admitted it wasn't the best present, he'd gone to get what I'd hinted at, they'd run out (it was christmas eve)so he settled for the first thing he could lay his hands on!!!!

Nancy said...

Your story reminds me of an Ann Landers column I read years ago, about women dealing with their snoring husbands. Many "solutions" were offered up, but the best letter came from a woman who had recently lost her husband of many years, and wished she could still hear the snores she had previously complained about.

Candace said...

We have been married over 40 years now, but gifts haven't always been my DH strong suit. I remember when I asked for a 35 gallon fish tank, and he came in with a 125 gallon coffin sized one. He just wanted to give me the "best" one. I would give him suggestions, and he would get something entirely different because he wanted to "surprise" me. The worst was about 8:30 at night on my birthday him saying let's go to the store and get you a present. On the other hand, when my daughter and I were discussing presents one time my daughter said what do you mean Mom, Christmas is all year long for you. I guess that he is a keeper.

Michelle said...

I got 80 bags of mulch for my 40th birthday this year...just sayin'.

Shasta said...

A clean kitchen inspires my daughter to cook. So when I clean, it is almost guaranteed to get messy again right away. It is frustrating, but I do enjoy the fact that she does cook for me, and maybe if I cleaned more often, she would cook more often.

Alycia said...

You just totally made my day. 4 men in the house - grease ALL THE TIME!

MichelleB said...

Wow! There are some nasty nancies out there, aren't there? I say, Amen, sister. I totally understand what you're saying!

sweetbabies00 said...

I want to comment to Julia, give your sister the china! That's not selling it.

Silkquilter01 said...

Dear Kim.

I have been married just 30 years this past month. Mine like to buy me diamond jewelery that I don't wear. lol. and sexy nighties that I am too FAT for. lol. However, these past two years, I have been in college and he made dinner for me almost every night. AND brought it too me on a plate so I wouldn't have to interrupt my studying. Did he clean the kitchen? Don't know. DIdn't look, cause I didn't clean it either. lol. (I now have two years of deep cleaning to do in addition to absorbing my mother's estate into my home.) When I get cranky about the small stuff, I write it down in a long letter, save it on the computer with a password so he won't accidentally access it, print it out and burn it. Very cathartic.

Aunt Jacques said...

I think that at times my DH has been the worst gift giver, a set of white pearl earrings,necklace and ring, which I don't care for,our daughters asked why I didn't say aomething, I told them , he gave them with love and I received them with love. They must have said something to him,because the next mothers day he gave a complete set of the most beautiful black titian pearls, the colors are so fabolous. However two of our daughters and one daughter in law have worn those white pearls when they married, and I wear them as much as I were my black set. And my honey wouldn't know how to clean up after himself. So I look at all the gifts , jewerly, sergers,sewing machimes(Phaffs only) clothes, etc, they are given with love, thats all I care about. But I would like to swat him for the messes he leaves.

Anonymous said...

Guess I'm one of those "Nasty Nancy's" as someone stated, but be glad you have a husband that is thoughtful enough to try and surprise and please you on special occasions. The last anniversary gift I got from my "ex" was a dinner a Red Lobster,(after I had to remind him he had totally forgotten our anniversary) and finding out for sure he had a girlfriend which wasn't me. Sorry, I don't usually post to blogs, but I can't let this one go. Be thankful you have a thoughtful husband. You could be alone, and if he does give you gifts that "don't quite make the mark" keep your thoughts to yourself. Don't make them public by posting them here.

Kim said...

Dear Anonymous (the last commenter above): I think you don't quite get the point of this post and the subsequent post--I DO appreciate my husband's thoughtfulness--he's a sweetie! What I'm talking about are my own shortcomings. Quite often "fault" (if you can call it that) doesn't lie with those around us but within ourselves, and we must examine our OWN behavior. I'm sorry your relationship didn't work out. Perhaps you should start your own blog so you, too, can talk about yourself and your feelings and work things through.

Norma said...

When my husband of 43 years asks me what I want or where I want to go out to eat, I tell him. Then he tells me "that is not what you want." and we go where he thinks I want to go. So maybe you are like me and just don't know what color flowers you like??

He sounds like a keeper just like mine.........as long as you know that when you get flowers, they REALLY aren't going to be what you want.

wendysquilting said...

This year for Christmas my sweetie gave me a fishing rod, a coffee mug, and a new housecoat the same as the one he gave me the year before.
The very best thing about these gifts...the summer before I mentioned once that a friend of mines husband gave her a pink ugly stick fishing rod and I thought that was pretty cool....in the fall I mentioned to him that the word Sisu came up at work Its a Finnish word that translates as strength of will, determination, perseverance, and acting rationally in the face of adversity. ...and I said that I thought it would be cool to have a mug at work with that word...when he gave me the first housecoat I said I wished I had one at his place just like it for after Sauna Time.
It is wonderful to be heard. We aren't married, but have been together for almost 4 years, coming from very rough divorces.
Sounds like you have a wonderful caring husband, what a blessing....maybe for Christmas he's telling you he needs some product to cleaning grease off the stove, a book on what the meaning of gifts of flower colours/types mean and a timer for baking cookies :)