and sitting here having had a drink(ok, three), I have a question for the ladies out there who might read this: do most women want to change a guy they like, or is it just some of them? I don't mean "Stop leaving your underwear in the living room" or "Will you please stop telling Denise "I've got a little list, they'll not be missed"? I have to work with her, you know!" I mean big stuff, things that are important to you.
Once, a long time ago, I wrote about my second marriage and how it went down the drain. Two biggest factors in it; 1. I got along with my ex on friendly terms and 2. I forge.
As to the first, we went round & round on this once before the marriage question came up. Didn't matter if she was pissed about it or not, the ex and I had two kids- who were little at the time- and I was going to try to stay on friendly terms with her if for no other reason than to ease things on the kids. Went over it again when I asked her to marry and she assured me that she could deal with it.
On 2, she really liked the admiration and respect I had for my smithing, the blades in particular. One weekend she went with me to Texas to a Celtic Heritage festival and really enjoyed it, with the one exception being her mention of the fact that I smelled of coal smoke at the end of the day. I replied that that was what showers and washing machines were for and nothing else was said(no, I did not pick up the subtle female signs that she was pissed about it).
After the wedding(not immediately, but within a month) two things happened. First, she started getting really jumpy- sometimes nasty- about me talking to my ex about the kids. Second, she made it clear that although she hadn't really said so before, I really needed to get rid of the forge as the noise and smell didn't fit into the neighborhood I now lived in.
You can guess how this crap went. Especially after one somewhat memorable occasion when she informed me that the solution to needing to talk to my ex about the kids was to take her to court, get custody of the kids and not allow her visitation: "Then you won't ever need to speak to her!"
Can you imagine telling a judge that the mother should lose custody- and no visitation- because your new wife doesn't like her? My first thought was that any jurist with three working brain cells would say "Bailiff? Kick that man three times around the courtroom and throw him out of here for bringing such idiocy in here", and I'd agree with him. Second thought, can you imagine putting two kids through a shitstorm like that?
And the other, she KNEW that I planned on smithing for years to come. Not on a daily basis(had never had that) but when time & weather allowed. And now she made it plain that I needed to give it up.
Note: I really am clueless about some things. One evening she was bitching about my ex and, noting that one thing they did share was stubborn, I commented that one of the things that made this difficult was that in some ways they were much alike. Yes, I should have thought about that before saying that. No, I didn't realize how it would go over. Oh yeah, that really brought out joy in the evening.
The fact that I write about my second ex covers what happened in the end(those two things weren't the only factors, but they were big ones). And no dating since has gone on long enough for the 'changing you' factor to come out if it would have.