Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Wives and Husbands

People are all really different, of course, except when they're not and one thing I've noticed about being married is that most marriages, broadly-speaking, start falling into certain recognizable patterns. Bill and I - because we have a talky sort of marriage - sat around the other night and tried to list all the different types of husbands and wives we could think of which was really fun. SO MUCH FUN, in fact, that I immediately said out loud that I was going to write down - BLOG IT, in fact - and now everyone within hearing range (i.e. Bill) is holding me to it even though writing it down is sooooo borrrring. But my word is my fricking bond, so here I go:

Every Type Of Husband And Wife We Could Think Of.

The Replacement Mom 
The Man Boy.
You see these two on tv a lot, and sometimes in real life, too. See, the husband is an idiotic irresponsible child (if he didn't start out as one, he is one NOW) and so the wife - either through choice or necessity - gets to be the sole household adult and tells him what to eat and to put on a sweater and how they're going to spend the money and so forth.
Pluses: Keeps Man Boys from being homeless hobos, gives some women a real focus.
Minuses: Probably the least erotic marital arrangement ever. Also, agonizingly uncomfortable to be around.

The Frenemy Wife
I don't know who she's married to, but this is the wife who although she's participating in the marriage, not-so-secretly hates her husband's guts or at least finds him deeply annoying to have around. You can find her crowing with glee whenever her husband leaves for any length of time, and running him down to all her friends the rest of the time.
Pluses: Husband gets to do stuff on his own without any feelings of guilt, I guess.
Minuses: Well, that should be obvious.

The Not There Husband
This guy is not participating in his marriage. He's either gone off with his friends doing his own thing most of the time or if he's actually home, he's in the garage or in the basement or laying silently on the couch watching tv. One excellent example of this type I've known had never bought his wife a birthday present or a Christmas present or a card or anything at any point in the whole length of their relationship.
He's generally married to
The Entire Relationship Wife
This poor woman has to do all the work in the marriage. She alone cleans the house and raises the kids and makes plans with his parents and buys the Christmas presents and takes the truck for servicing and so on and so on.
Pros: Not really any.
Cons: Really lonely.

The Delicate Porcelain Princess AKA The Mary Musgrove
If your dreams were to marry an emotionally fragile hypochondriac who can't drive, I'm sorry to tell you that I already married Bill.
Pros: I dunno, ask him.
Cons: He has to drive all the time.

The Volcano
This spouse - of either gender - has everyone in the household walking on eggshells. They frequently express the belief that holding in anger is bad for them in some mysterious way. They like to yell and sometimes hit things or people. They blame others for their anger and their spouses - generally nice, breakable types - believe this too, to some extent. Their spouses often believe that these people can change, or be fixed or that if they just do things right these people will behave nicely.
Pluses: There are none. Get out as soon as you can.
Minuses: Everything.

The Regretful Wife
This wife is sorry that she married that guy, for whatever reason. I know someone who married her present spouse because she hoped that her ex-boyfriend would come along and stop her before the wedding. He didn't, and now she is in a sad, sad marriage. This is so depressing that I'm just going to skip to the next one.

The Controller
Where are you going? Who is going to be there? Call me when you get there. Call me when you get back. Meanwhile, I'm going to check all your messages on our shared Facebook account and screen all your phonecalls and then I'm going to make sure that you cleaned the house to my standards, and then I'm going to tell you who you can be friends with and how often you can see your mom and what you get to write and eat and what you should wear and on and on and on...
Pluses: Maybe you always REALLY wanted someone to boss you around and you find this level of hyper-vigilance a sign of luv.
Minuses: Every hair on the back of my neck is standing up in utter irritation at THE VERY IDEA.

 The Laura Ingalls
Grinds the grain and homeschools the kids and spins the wool and churns the butter and knits the sweaters and raises the chickens and sprouts the... sprouts and milks the goats and quilts the fabric and rugs the rags and scrubs the floors and is generally exhaustingly virtuous.
Pluses: Admirable.
Minuses: Not my idea of a good time, but I don't have to be married to her, do I.

The Graphic Designer
Coffee-drinking capable misanthropic hard-working artsy types.
Pluses: Very good husband material, will email you funny pictures from work.
Minuses: Will complain about the fonts used in restaurant menus, will email you gross pictures from work.

The Pal Wife
For whatever reason, some people decide to marry someone who's a good friend but not really anything else. Maybe they've given up on finding passionate love or maybe they're not interested in it, but these marriages can sometimes be pretty pleasant if not actually very exciting.
Pros: Marrying someone who likes you is nice, at least.
Cons: The whole sex thing. Also, one of the spouses is likely to leave when they DO find someone they're passionate about.

The Flaky Artist
Will make you listen to poetry they've written about their feelings.Takes up a lot of new careers and hobbies and wants to have long discussions about what they should be doing with their lives. Prone to suddenly leaving to find their freaking bliss.
Pros: Sometimes entertaining. Fun in bed.
Cons: Unreliable. Will break your heart.

The Laid-Back Guy
Mellow guitar-playing fellows who are okay going along with whatever you'd like. Very mellow. Irritatingly, unruffleably mellow. Whatever you like, babe.
Pros: Mellow.
Cons: Really mellow.

That's all I can think of for right now. Do you have some others? Let me know in the comments and I'll add them to the list. (and also, hey! I wrote something!)