Tuesday, July 25, 2006


A small snippet of married life. This morning my wife washed her hair. Nothing unusual in that, it happens twice every week like clockwork. She wanted more though, felt that the hairs at the nape of her neck needed trimming. It’s not something you can do yourself so I was handed a pair of scissors.

I hate this job. I am not a hairdresser, have no inclination to be a hairdresser, and have no clue about what to do. Yet I am handed the scissors.

What begins has happened before, and is part of the reason I hate it. Part of the reason for this post, is I don’t know how to break this particular cycle. It starts with me asking how she wants it done. I’m not looking for step by step instructions, though that would be nice, but just a clear description.

The irritation starts. She seems to get annoyed that I don’t know what she wants. Every time I get the same complaint that she doesn’t have a hand mirror to see it, so can’t tell me. All she knows is it need to be done, so do it.

I’m no saint, and I’m sure my irritation at her irritation shows in response. I start snipping. This time she stops me and hands me a razor. “My stylist always shaves the nape of my neck.”

“OK, how much do you want shaved?” I know in asking I’ve asked wrong, not hid my own ire. Sure enough it sparks a response. Again I’m told she doesn’t know as she can’t see it. This seems to be the impasse we always reach. Somehow my asking is seen as an attack or a failing. I don’t know which, but asking the question invariably gets her temper up.

This time I stop and ask her to not get angry. She goes quiet, but I can tell she’s glowering silently. I do my best and finish. We end up irritated with each other. Its just one of those things, two people can’t live in perfect harmony, but this one just gets to me. I know I’ve got to clear the air with her, but I’d appreciate some help. Why is my asking the question such a spark? Is it my showing irritability in doing it in the first place? Is it not knowing how to do it? Is it not being able to read her mind? Help?


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