Friday, October 16, 2009

ff: perceptions

Ah, Facebook quizzes. What would I do without them? (Probably some dusting. It would be more productive for sure!) Every once in awhile one catches my eye and I just can't resist taking it. Who doesn't want to know how long they could last during a Zombie attack (turns out, not so very long in my case) or which Scrubs character they are most like (I am Chocolate Bear...if you watch the show, you understand). What do you mean, "massive waste of time"? These are important matters, I am telling you.

So last week I took the quiz "Which Movie Couple are You and Your Significant Other?" After a few run-of-the-mill questions, the quiz spit out my result. We are apparently the most like Alli and Noah from "The Notebook". Of course this is the one movie/book I have not seen/read so I had no idea what that might mean. Luckily for me, the quiz writer put together a lovely little blurb to explain.
You have had your struggles but the fire between the 2 of you hasn't and won't go out. You 2 are crazy about each other. You have a unique love story. People envy the 2 of you. The love you share is so passionate, you make people cry. I wish everyone was as lucky as you!
Awww, right? It sounds great. And while these quizzes should never actually be taken seriously (according to one, I have an 80% chance of getting married and will have 2.3 kids), this one is relatively close to true in our case. I'm not sold on the use of the word "passionate" but we are crazy about each other, there is enough, ahem, "fire" involved and ours (like most) is a unique love story. Unfortunately, the "envy" part rings true as well.

I have had someone throw the phrase "perfect husband, perfect family" in my face during a disagreement. And while only the one person has actually verbalized this bitterness toward me, others have expressed it through their actions. It's not really something you can fight against; once someone has decided that your relationship is superior to their own and, furthermore, that this means that you believe that you are superior to them, there isn't much you can do about it. It's a frustrating situation because the only way to convince them otherwise is to lay out all your dirty laundry to show them just how "imperfect" your relationship really is. I'm just not going to do that.

I don't think we're perfect at all. We don't allow people on the inside of our marriage; that's just how we do things. For the majority of our marriage the worst thing people would hear me say about Jason is that it takes him forever to put his socks on*. (And it does! I've never known anyone who can stretch that one activity out more. Argh!) Does that mean that he doesn't do anything else that I have trouble with? No, not by a long shot! And you gotta know that I drive him up the wall at times. We've both hurt each other terribly on more than one occasion. But we've nearly always had mutual friends; people who were just as close to one of us as the other. I'm not going to put those people in the situation of feeling as though they have to "choose sides"** and neither is he. It's just not fair to anyone involved.

Our marriage is not perfect. It actually irritates me to think that anyone can think we got to where we are today without putting a lot of work into our relationship and family. It has not been an easy ride by any stretch of the imagination. It has been a lot of work and we've had more than just some "struggles". We've been down some very dark roads together. There have been times when we weren't sure what was going to happen to our relationship. I think this is true of nearly anyone who has been together for any decent length of time regardless of how "perfect" they may look from the outside. I find myself hoping that "The Notebook" has that as an underlying theme in the story. I'm guessing that it does...otherwise, where would the story be?

So does anyone else find themselves routinely perceived in a way that just doesn't ring true? How do you deal with it?

*This does not include when I started outing him about his smoking to anyone and everyone who would listen earlier this year. He was warned prior to me doing that it doesn't count.

**Except that one time. Sorry, D.

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