Monday, January 09, 2012

Cody And Jonah's Big Fight

It's almost not worth writing about now. Jonah and I don't fight or argue much. It's very rare. We get along quite well. But we do have different interests and different ways of communicating and different ways of thinking, and occasionally it does get us in trouble.

New Year's Eve also happens to be our anniversary. We had gone out fro a lovely dinner at the Cheesecake Factory and then went see Hugo, which I found to be an unexpectedly charming and delightful movie. Anyway, our evening was quite wonderful.

When we got home, Jonah checked his email, and I checked mine. After he finished, Jonah appeared to be tired and was lying on the couch watching the New Year's Eve programs on TV. I was still on the computer doing some things related to my mom's dementia (keep in mind, this was not too long after some of the events described in this post). Jonah would ask me what I was doing, and I would reply. After I finished, I laid beside Jonah on a couch that i really two small for us. I wasn't very comfortable, but held him as we watched local coverage of the New Year's festivities. When the fireworks started, I wondered aloud if we could see them from the house. Jonah suggested I should go upstairs and check them out. So I did. I watched as the fireworks show continued.

Eventually Jonah came up to join me. He then took a shower, so I got back on my computer, and then Jonah went to bed.

The next day I awoke to find that Jonah was not in bed. I thought that was odd, but proceeded to get ready for church. I came downstairs to find Jonah asleep on the couch. I told him I was going to church and asked him if everything was okay. He replied that it was, although I sensed it wasn't. I probably should have prodded further, but when someone tells me things are okay, I generally take their words at face value.

I went to church, which seemed very uninspired to me. I also felt this nagging feeling that I should go back home and be with Jonah, so I did. However, as I talked to him, he seemed not very responsive to conversation, so I went upstairs for a bit. The rest of the day Jonah and I did not talk much, which is unusual. Then he went to work.

When he came home, he told me he was going to visit his mom for a bit. I asked him if he wanted me to come. Then suddenly Jonah revealed that I had hurt his feelings the night of our anniversary, saying that he was hurt that I hadn't spent more time with him that evening after we had come home. I had been on the computer an awful lot during our anniversary (I had), and it basically boiled down to the fact that because of my job I'm rarely home and we don't spend nearly enough time together and that while I'm here in between jobs, Jonah will be selfish with time we spend together because we generally get so little of it as it is.

The fighting part came from the fact that I genuinely had little clue that Jonah was feeling this way. I sensed he was upset about something, but literally had no idea what it was. In my mind, we had had a lovely anniversary, eating out, seeing a movie, and he genuinely seemed tired when we got home, so I was just doing other things while he rested. I didn't know he wanted to spend more time together. Being our anniversary, I should have known that, but I did not get the hint.

We were yelling at each other (again, something that is rare in our household). He because he was hurt by me, saying that it often seemed that my job or my concerns with my family came before him, and he had just wanted me all to himself specifically on our special day. Me because he had not made it clear to me what he wanted, that I had gotten mixed signals, and that if he wanted that he should have communicated it to me rather than expecting me to read his mind and then giving me the silent treatment because I hadn't.

But the very bottom line was that Jonah was right. I don't put him first as often as I ought to. We are married, after all, and I do sometimes put my career and my family in front of him, and he's right that it isn't fair. He does so much household-wise when I am not here, and he deserves to have as supportive a spouse as he has been to me in my career aspirations. He is here all by himself when I am away whereas I live with my mom during times of employment away from home. It isn't fair, and I couldn't argue with him on that point.

I am not as intuitive or observant as Jonah. I'm just not. I told him I just need him to directly tell me if something's bothering him because I might not pick up on it or, if I do, I will not pursue it if he tells me everything is okay.

I am trying harder to make each moment we have together count. I am trying to spend less time on the computer when we are both home because it's true I do spend too much time on the Internet. I am trying to participate more in activities Jonah enjoys even if I don't just to maximize our time together. I am even considering taking a brief hiatus from acting this summer just so I can be at home more.

It wasn't a bad fight nor was it one that wasn't needful. I only tell you because Jonah and I aren't perfect. We have a great relationship, and I love it and him, but like any couple, we do have misunderstandings and disagreements, and I want you to know that. I don't want anybody to think our relationship is free of challenges or miscommunication.

The fight wasn't fun while we were having it, but I'm glad we had it. It helped me work on some things I need to work on, and hopefully it helped Jonah and I learn to communicate better.

Fortunately, neither of us hold grudges or carry negative energy for very long. All has gone very well since that night, and I feel like our relationship is going great.


Ben said...

Great post! It's refreshing to read a blog by a gay man who is not having an identity crisis. While I was reading it crossed my mind that you should feel lucky that you even have someone to fight with because not everyone finds that one special person, then you explicitly expressed that you are grateful for the fight. Your post also got me wondering if I'd be more like you or more like Jonah in a relationship. Sometimes I'm forthright with my feelings, but other times I hold them in. Anyway, congratulations on your anniversary!

Gay LDS Actor said...

Thanks, Ben.

I feel very lucky to have Jonah to fight with, more so because the fights are so few and far between.