I'm a geek.
And a recent purchase that my wife disagreed with got me thinking: how much should you change when you get married?
The romanticized answer is: "Nothing. You and your partner should love each for all that you are." That's all fine and good, but I think rarely works in the real-world. I purchased this Star Trek Archer flight jacket. I was sure my wife wouldn't like it; and sure enough, when I showed her the pictures, her face got her half disbelief/half disapproval expression.
This was a jacket I really wanted. I am tired of the same colors and style I have been wearing for years. I wanted a change, and if I did, I might as wear something I really wanted to. I wanted something that appealed to me. I had a limited time to get it at a discount before it went up to full price. I had to act fast or never get it at all. I got it.
Before I bought it, Yoko had asked me if I would buy it anyway, even if she didn't like it. I said 'yes.' But a part of me felt guilty. I wasn't doing this to spite her, it was a jacket I really liked and wanted. But Yoko hates geeky stuff. Figures, posters, merchandise with logos aren't her thing.
Yoko knew I was a geek before we got married. While I often tease her with my gekkiness, I don't do anything to openly embarrass her. There are plenty of figures and posters I'd like to hang up that I don't out of respect for her. Our apartment is pretty geek-free.
Which begs the question: if you're a Trekkie, Nascar fan, or collect Hummel figurines, should you change that if your spouse doesn't like it? My answer is yes and no. I think the best result comes from understanding and compromise on both partners's parts. Don't try to change your spouse. If she is an Oreo fanatic, don't try to stop her from collecting Oreo merchandise and refuse to let her display it in the house. You should, in the nicest way possible, try to explain that you don't like it. But as the Oreo collector, you have to respect your partner's wishes. There is nothing to gain by parading something your spouse hates. But they need to understand it is a part of you. It's your likes and interests and make you who you are. But you may need to reel in your passion a bit if it openly clashes with your partner.
Until Yoko met me, she had never heard of a "man cave" and I think this is a great solution (for women too). A small out-of-the-way place for you to really be you. But, if you're like me, and can't have your own cave, try to balance your passions. Find tiny unobtrusive ways to showcase your interests without pushing it in your spouse's face. You may have to keep your life-sized T.A.R.D.I.S. replica in storage, but that doesn't mean you can't have a Doctor Who fridge magnet or something similar.
How about it, readers? Do your interests clash with your spouse's? How do you handle it? Any tips or advice? Comment below, and as always, thanks for reading.