Post # 1
One of the only pieces of relationship advice that my mother has ever given me is that you shouldn’t count on changing a man or on a man changing for you. But on the other hand, I’ve already broken some of my FI’s bad habits– he now takes his dishes to the sink after meals, and he no longer leaves bags of chips, carrots, etc. on the floor next to the couch. Of course, I’ve done some things to make clean-up easier– we bought a couple of serving trays to bring food to the table and take dishes to the sink, and I now keep a trash can next to his side of the couch for his snack paraphernalia.
Just for fun, I was wondering what you bees think. Can you “train” your SO? 😉
Post # 3
This post reminds me of this article I saw on the Bee awhile ago. 🙂
Post # 4
I don’t think you should want to change you SO nor should you have any hopes or expectations that it will happen.
Yes – some of your habits may rub off on him but they may not. If something is going to bother you and drive you crazy if it doesn’t change – don’t expect that it will change.
Post # 5
Your mom is right. People don’t change.
Post # 6
Its true that people dont change in big ways but that doesnt mean they cant change at all. When Darling Husband and I first started living together he was terrible at cleaning and keeping up with chores. He had only ever lived at home or with guys so he was very messy and it was always up to me. After many discussions about why I need him to help out, he has really come around. Occasionally I will see him cleaning some dishes without me even asking him to do so!!
Post # 7
I think it depends on what it is. When you move in together everybody has to make compromises with the way they do things and learn how to live together harmoniously. That includes a measure of change. I think as long as you’re willing to make small changes as well on things that aren’t a big deal and/or see the logic in the way he does things and not immediately mark it as “wrong” then it’s not terrible to expect small changes in return.
Expecting big changes is another matter. He’s not going to become a gourmet cook who loves washing dishes every night. He’s not going to become a laundry connoisseur who hand washes your delicates after adding Downey on the rinse cycle. He may learn to accept an under the counter kitchen trash rather than a large side cabinet one. He may remember to dump his clothes in the hamper rather than leaving them on the bathroom floor.
There’s a difference between logical small expectations and illogical idealistic expectations as far as changes go. Where the line is?…..no clue 😀
Post # 8
Heard this once:
Women marry men hoping they’ll change… they don’t.
Men marry women hoping they won’t change…. they do.
Changing a man really depends, small little habits, maybe just a few, but if you attempt to get thim to change a trait or personality you’re going to fail and going to fail bad. And WHY on earth would you attempt this change after and engagementment or worse yet, after marriage. That’s why we date, to figure out how to work the relationship! If you can’t get it in good order before marriage why on earth would you think it’s going to change after?
Post # 9
I think it depends what type of change. People’s personalities don’t really change much, but I think in terms of things like household chores, it’s a little different. Chores and the like are things that nobody likes to do, but people grow up, get a little more mature (feel more ownership of the home and space they live in rather than just living with a bunch of roommates), and realize that they have to do them.
The things you’re doing sound like great ideas to me! I don’t think it’s a fundamental personality change to go from leaving trash on the table to putting it in the garbage can which he can reach from the couch, but it certainly makes less of a mess. I think incentives and nudges like that work a lot better than nagging.
Post # 10
People do change, just not necessarily (or not usually) when pushed.
Post # 11
@PitBulLover: Good for you! I’m still working on a more equal “division of labor” around the apartment… I’ve got a chores list up that I’ve been using just to remind myself of what needs done, and recently, I’ve suggested that we could each check off what we do in different colors of pens.
@vmec: Good points!
@Entangled: Thanks! It isn’t a major personality change, but I think it helps the apartment and our relationship– because otherwise, I’m going to be annoyed every time I see trash or dirty dishes out, and I’m going to be super annoyed when I feel like I’m wasting my time cleaning up his messes. Change can be good.
@MissBoPeep: That article is hilarious!
Post # 12
Of course, people can seem to change!!! Mostly when they are getting something out of the transition or because they really want to for whatever the reason.
Don’t forget, everyone person is an actor! So the change could be temporary. He could be doing those things because right now he is soooooo in love with you. But when you piss him off???? Shit may hit the ceiling! Then again, he could have actually changed for himself.
@vmec:I agree 100%.
For your SO, leaving trash lying around is like an addiction. Everybody has an addiction, so he’s not alone in this. And even tho he may seem like he’s managing right now, I promise you he has to remind himself everytime to do away with his trash. It’s not like it has become second nature to him or anything. But for the rest of his life, he will try to do this one thing to please you. And I do not call that change. I call that Give and Get. In his mind, he gives you what you want so he can get what he wants. NOT CHANGE!!!!
Not trying to be negative, only truthful.
Post # 13
@futuremrsbolling472012: I agree that an old habit could come back. But… I do think you can form new habits. I think I’ve read that 21 days is the (minimum? average?) amount of time it usually takes to form a new “habit.” So if you can change your behavior for that long, you might be able to break an old habit and form a new one (barring the use of truly addictive substances, like cigarettes, etc.). I’m hoping for the best!! 😉 Worst case scenario… I have some bad habits too, so at least we’d both be equally stuck with each other– ha ha!
Post # 14
I feel like we could both change a bit, and we both work on it. Of course you shouldn’t want to change the major personality traits of your mate… why would you marry them if you did? But I think there is a certain amount of growth that is healthy. For example… I think I’ve helped my Fiance change the way that he deals with anger and insecurity. He used to have a really fast temper and that was not acceptable to me. We’ve worked through that and now when he’s angry we discuss it, which works so much better. He also used to be a lot more self-conscious. I think I’ve helped improve his self-esteem a lot and he now believes that he can do things he never thought he could before (especially academically and professionally).
At the same time, I think that he’s helped me to become a more empathetic person and to see that life isn’t as black and white as I used to think it was. He challenges me to be less judgmental.
I think we’re both changing and I think we’re making each other better people and better partners.
Post # 15
@CorgiTales: That’s a good point. I think we’re both changing and that we’re both changing each other too. I really rely on my SO for support. He’s good at picking me up when I’m feeling down, and I think I’ve grown as a person because I feel more grounded and less afraid when I know he’s got my back. 🙂