This weekend, Jeff and I got into a disagreement which we have mostly resolved, but for which I am still carrying some anger. In his eyes, which sees winners and losers, he would say that I “won” the argument, but he hasn’t given it to me cleanly, if that is the case. It is tainted with his disappointment that he is the “loser.”
In my eyes, I am not the “winner,” because there was a more complicated point that I was trying to make, and which he did not register, at least not to my satisfaction. The issue revolves around money, as do probably 90% of all arguments between partners. On the simplest level of the argument, it is framed around how we spend our money. In the past year, Jeff has wanted and received within a short period a new bed, two new couches, and a TV. Now mind you, I never said “no” to any of these purchases. You see, if he wants them, and it will make him happy, then so be it.
On the other hand, I have been asking for the past couple years to update the bathrooms and kitchen. In fact, at one point, we even went shopping to start pricing things out, and then I we bought our bed. I didn’t bring it up again. Until we were at his sister’s house and I found out they were remodeling their bathroom. After they had already remodeled their kitchen a few years ago. Their house is not as old as ours. I renewed my interest in updating our home.
So it is clear there is “tit for tat” in this argument, and many of you probably recognize it from your own relationships. Right before I went to bed last night, I read something I had found in a drawer while grabbing our paperwork for taxes. It was the sermon that was read by the minister at my dad’s funeral. I had laid it on the bed earlier, and I thought, “Okay, this is for me. Here is my sign.”
The minister said that, when he went to visit my dad in the hospital, my dad told him, “I need a friend.” Now, my dad was a man who made many friends, and the church was packed to prove it. But Dad was nearing his death, and he knew he needed a kind of support that his buddies would not offer him. He knew he needed to find a deeper faith in Jesus and God before he passed over.
“I need a friend.” That was how I felt last night, as I went to bed. Even though I have so many dear friends, and a husband who loves me despite this disagreement, some days I feel like I really just need a friend.