nothing for anniversary

posted 2 years ago in Relationships
Post # 61
1727 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

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forestfaerie :  I understand you and my husband is also not the romantic gesture type. Thing is, your therapist is right: you have to ask for things, clearly and do. not. hint. if you don’t want to be disappointend. Is it great to have to do this? Yeah, no, it’s not super romantic. But my husband has other qualities I love and I know he wants to make me happy. He’s just not so great in that area. So I do the following: 

1) I send him a gift list (usually it’s easy like amazon wish list) where I have an ongoing list of things I would enjoy to have a gift for birthdays and holidays

2) I say things like: “tomorrow on my birthday it would be wonderful to have flowers. Can you get me flowers?” (<– in a super nice way) 

3) I recognize that romantic gestures are not his thing while fully recognizing that some (not all) are important to me and I tell him so. “Honey, I know you dont care about flowers on our aniversary, so I am even more appreciative when that happens because I know it’s not easy for you to remember etc. I hope you don’t mind me reminding you. It’s super important to me” And then I remind him. Because he is who he is.


ETA: I haven’t read the whole thread. I feel like I have to add: when I clearly state my expecation in the romance area, my husband then actually does make that effort. He then does pick something off of my wish list and he does do the things. I did my part (I was clear and direct) and he does his. If you are being this direct and he still drops the ball then I would be super hurt too. It would feel like laziness or disinterest. And that is not healthy in a relationship. 

Post # 62
945 posts
Busy bee

You guys, she has told him clearly and unambiguously that birthdays and anniversaries are important. She said, a few days before their anniversary, “these flowers are beautiful. HINT HINT.”

Let’s give her H some credit that he’s not a total freaking idiot and assume he got the damn hint (oh yeah, he told her. I imagine he said something to the effect of “I get it you’d like some flowers”).

I think your H is being thoughtless, but at this point, I think what you have to do is talk together and reset expectations. Like if his love language is quality time, maybe you plan in advance some quality time – like you could ask him to cook you a nice dinner or take you to a nice dinner, but it’s up to him to pick the place (giving him the opportunity to be thoughtful). What do you think?

Post # 63
2698 posts
Sugar bee

You’re not unreasonable for thinking your husband could be expected to pick up grocery store flowers and a card when he was going to the store anyway, on your anniversary! Honestly, that’s not a high bar! You’re not even expecting him to go to a florist and get a fancy arrangement, you’re literally just wanting some grocery store sunflowers which are like $10.

Obviously it’s not about the actual gift, it’s about the thought behind it. I’m the same – gifts are important to me, but if it were just about getting the thing, I’d just buy it for myself. It’s about knowing that someone went out of their way to think about me and pick out something they thought I’d like.

You’ve already communicated your desire for flowers, and most people in relationships know that anniversaries are the type of occassion where it’s appropriate to at least give a card. Like you, I don’t expect extravagant gifts, but I do expect my husband to either give me something small, or for us to plan an activity to do together like a nice dinner out. I don’t think you should have to spell this out for him any more than you already have. Though I will say that one way I manage expectations over gifts is that my husband and I will often agree to do an experience together (like a small weekend getaway or seeing a performance together) in lieu of giving each other physical gifts for mutual gifting holidays; that way we’re both involved in the planning so we’re both happy, and there is no expectation of a surprise. 

Since your hubsnad seems to have still not gotten it, however, I do think you should sit him down and have a talk about the fact that these little gestures are important to you, and that you feel like they are missing from your relationship. Tell him it’s a serious issue for you and these things are important to making you feel loved and appreciated, and going forward it’s important that something change. I do think you may need to be more direct with him about this, because it seems like he’s not understanding the gravity of how his lack of acknowledgement of special occassions makes you feel. He may not think gifts are important himself, but hopefully if you spell out for him exactly how important thoughtful gestures are to you, he will make more of an effort next time.

Post # 64
5184 posts
Bee Keeper

Having to spell absolutely everything out to your partner in terms of a gift is ridiculous. At that point you might as well buy flowers for yourself. What kind of man does absolutely nothing on birthdays or anniversaries? I’m not one who needs any kind of fuss on my birthday or our anniversary,  but flowers and/or candy are nice. But I’m totally side-eyeing the fact that you basically told him in so many words that you want flowers and he did nothing. The idiot obviously doesn’t care that this takes a big toll on your affection toward him. I’d be wondering why.

Rather than crying in the bathroom I’d ask him why he thought it was ok to do nothing. 

Post # 65
13237 posts
Honey Beekeeper

If a gesture is not genuine and self motivated, then I don’t place any value in it. That said, I think you can most certainly let your husband know that it hurts to be ignored and taken for granted, especially after the birthday fail, and that you are not at all okay with it. It is of course possible he assumed you’d celebrate over the weekend though that is suspicious since he only made the suggestion after he saw you were upset.

But no effort at all on the day of, not even a card, is pretty thoughtless after it’s already been made clear how much even a small one means to you.


Post # 66
648 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

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ariesscientist :  
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happiekrappie :  100% this. I really hate that we, as a society, continually blame women for the issues that some men have about acting like proper, functioning adults. And this thread is a good example of it. I’m sorry, but I was raised to, at bare minimum, acknowledge a loved one’s birthday. Like a PP said, I would be absolutely mortified if I found out I had forgotten my husband’s birthday. To me, that is just unacceptable from any adult. Why do men (or anyone, really) get a pass because of silly things like “It just isn’t his love language,” or “He just has a bad memory” or “Birthdays/anniversaries just aren’t his thing.” 

That is bullshit. Take responsibility for yourself and act like an adult. If you don’t have a good memory and/or you’re just terrible at remembering events and occasions, do what some Bees here have said and make yourself notes, either in your phone calendar or on a physical one. The person you’ve forgotten about shouldn’t be made to feel like shit just because you can’t be bothered to put in some effort every once in a while. They shouldn’t have to do the heavy lifting and be responsible for you. They shouldn’t have to coddle and nag you like a child. Be better.

ETA: On the “Be better” thing, whenever my husband or I screw up, we acknowledge that we messed up and we agree that we will do better moving forward. And guess what? We do better.

Post # 67
7594 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

I agree with pp who are saying you were actually perfectly direct in expressing your needs, and your husband’s failure to get you flowers cannot be attributed to innocent cluelessness. You did the love language quiz together and told him gifts are your love language; you told him how hurt you were when he did fuck all for your birthday; you then pointed at flowers in a grocery store a few days before your anniversary and said “hint hint” and CONFIRMED that he got the hint, and still, no flowers. It doesn’t take fuckin Sherlock homes to break the code here…and it’s sad that some pp are chalking this up to “lol menfolk r just so dense!” No.

Have you asked him why he didn’t get you the flowers? I’d be so bewildered and hurt at this point. It would have been SO EASY for him to get them, such a small, effortless gesture that would have made his wife feel loved. I can’t understand why he dropped the ball.

Post # 68
2060 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2017

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personaperson :  yep to this. My husband and I both remember important things and give each other gifts for anniversaries and birthdays because we’re just equally on the same page. My husband doesn’t need hints nor does he need reminders in his phone to remember my birthday, our dating anniversary, or wedding anniversary.  It is second nature to him. He also does random things like flowers on a regular day or my favorite candy because I’m on my period. I didn’t realize how far of a stretch it is for some men according to this thread. I certainly wouldn’t generalize all men to be anything because…no.

Post # 69
569 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Well, my love language is touch and his is words of affirmation. The problem is we are woman which I think always think more through hence also expect more.  We have soooo many talks where I get angry because I don’t get enough touch and cuddling, but maybe only one dicussion where he told me it’s nice to hear more compliments, eventhough I realized I haven’t compliment him that much (yeah sometimes I take him for granted too). Here we are 8 years later, getting better, but still usually forget the other love language. I still get bitchy, but then ask for it straight and he will happily oblige lol.

Sometimes men are just that stupid, they cannot help it themself. My DH even said his really sorry for his stupidity around the house, he tried to think like me but still cannot get to the lenght of my thought.

Having said that, forgetting every birthday and anniversary I agree is not trying, you should talk to him how it makes you really sad. And if he doesn’t care then we can call him ignorant jerk..

Post # 70
667 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2018 - City, State

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forestfaerie :  sorry ifit was asked already…. has your hubby always been like this? Even when dating etc? Or is do it slowly declining. 

Not sur how he can be thick when you were clear, olus u did the test together  etc etc. Its almost deliberate at this point or hes incredibly thick about this.

(not to be too harsh but this is all BS on his part)

Post # 71
16 posts

That’s just sad. You shouldn’t have to pull teeth to get flowers on your anniversary. You expressed to him you want flowers and he couldn’t even buy you a single $1 rose. That’s not even the bare minimum. Time to put the fear in him or reserve yourself to getting nothing on special days 

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