April 26th, 2012
Oddly, when men have heart attacks, afterward they inevitably want to go right back to work. Going back to work feels like their life is on track. Even if their wife is smarter than they are and makes more money. And let’s face it, that’s true of a lot of women. But going back to work is the driving force for many men after illness.
However, when you want to get a man out of the house for something other than work, in many cases, the situation is, well, good luck. Unless it’s doing something he likes that involves other guys, like going drag car racing in Mexico or going golfing.
The activities that many men will drag their heels for include going to readings, parties, dinners, theatre, opera, music. Even my husband, who seems to like all these things was trying to convince me that instead of going to the Master Chorale on Sunday we should stay home and relax and watch a movie and have dinner at home or even just paint and forget the movie. I resisted this idea. I am not in relax mode right now, and I don’t like letting tickets go to waste. Once I have purchased tickets, I want to go. And I think if you stay home too much, you start to veg out. You don’t know what’s going on any more. You could become boring or bored, neither of which I want to have happen to me.
My friend Karen’s husband Michael is more of a trooper in this regard than any man I know. They subscribe to three theatres, and go to the Bowl every week in summer. Plus they go to the Master Chorale with us. That’s a lot of culture. That many outings would interfere with work and sleep for me, but they manage. Michael loves theatre and he has huge energy; he’ll even go to musicals. It’s hard to find straight men who will go to a musical unless they are attending The Lion King with their kids which we did. We even went to Mama Mia with the kids and I thought Mark was going to have a coronary when he realized we were going to a musical. But he survived. Barely.
Suggestions if your man doesn’t like to leave the house except to work:
What not to do:
Do not say you’ll go with a girlfriend if he doesn’t come, he’ll just shrug.
Do not threaten him. That’s just mean. And you wouldn’t like it done to you.
Do not try to shame him. What are you, a child?
Do not text him photos of you at the event kissing someone else. Please!
Do not Facebook him that you want him to come. Talk to him. At the point you’re using FB to communicate with your lover, spouse or family, you really need to learn that intimacy means conversation.
What to do:
Go to eat whatever he likes when you’re out.
Invite friends he likes.
Plan on a night that will work for his schedule.
Pick plays and music he might like.
Promise him post event treats. And then deliver. And you know what I mean, girl.
I had a good birthday. After teaching we went to Santa Barbara. I slept on the way up because I was so tired I couldn’t think straight. Maybe I’m overworked. I don’t know, I can’t think about it; my mind is crowded. It’s like Grand Central Station in there.