Dear Vitamin C –
Lately my husband and I have been fighting a lot, mostly around scheduling. In juggling kids, work, and social calendars, I feel like I need to ask him permission before I make plans. If those plans involve him watching the kids, he typically responds by saying my request puts pressure on him, which builds resentment in me. And, around and around we go. We are caught in a pretty bad cycle. I know there must be a better way and am hoping you can help.
Dear Asking Permission –
I don’t believe in asking permission from your partner. However, I do believe in checking in with one another. Asking permission assumes a parent/child or superior/subordinate relationship rather than an equal partnership. An example of checking in is: “Hey do we have anything planned for Friday night? I was thinking about getting together with some girlfriends but wanted to check in with you first.” If you are in a secure relationship with your partner this question conveys – we are a team and you are my first priority. If you feel your partner is constantly making plans that don’t include you then that is a pattern that should be discussed. If that conversation doesn’t have an easy conclusion then seeking a third party’s view could make a big difference. The goal for couples is to feel that their partner has their back and that they are the most important person in their partner’s life – no permission required.
Yours, Vitamin C