DEAR CAROLYN: My spouse and I’ve been married seven years and she or he’s the neatest and most sensible individual I’ve ever met, and I really like her and her approach of seeing the world. I’ve all the time seen her as a really logical one who’s not vulnerable to random flights of fancy. She has talked about liking tattoos for a very long time, however by no means gotten one as a result of she all the time stated it is a massive choice having one thing on her pores and skin endlessly. I hate tattoos. I’ve by no means wished one and by no means wished her to have one. She’s a trainer, so her skilled picture is essential to her. I used to be away for enterprise final week and after I obtained residence, she confirmed me a tattoo on her wrist. We talked each evening whereas I used to be gone however she did not even hassle to inform me she determined to do that. It is small, and she or he stated it is the one one she desires, however I am nonetheless flabbergasted and ticked off. I have not instructed her but however I hate it. It appears so not like her, like she simply obtained bored and randomly determined to mark herself for all times. I do know she had talked about wanting one for some time, however she all the time acted prefer it was only a joke. Now it is on her physique endlessly, and I am involved, aggravated and anxious. Involved that she would do one thing like this seemingly out of nowhere, aggravated that she did not hassle to inform me first and anxious that perhaps one thing’s happening that I do not learn about? I have been distant since she confirmed me. How do I cope with this?
TATTOO TROUBLE: How are you going to say it “appears so not like her” and “out of nowhere” when every part else you say proves it is one thing she all the time wished?
She thought of it for a very long time, brazenly, with you, after which did it.
It takes some wishful pondering to spin that into “randomly.”
What actually occurred, I might enterprise, is that her lastly doing it knocked off your filter, the one by which you ran all of her tattoo speak so you would inform your self she’d by no means get one. She’s too smart, you instructed your self. She’s too skilled. She was simply joking.
You wished to see her this manner, so that is what you noticed.
However, all alongside she was somebody who’d get a tattoo finally. Then “finally” finally got here.
Your frustration with the timing is legitimate. She clearly knew you’d object, so she went at it sideways vs. head-on.
That’s on her. She owed it to you to be open about her alternative.
However you owed it to her to see her for who she is and never spin her into somebody you appreciated higher.
No matter what you consider all of this, she is who she is. As-is. If it had been my marriage, I might look previous the tattoo to the larger problem of valuing directness extra and, towards that finish, pledging to evaluate much less.
By the best way, the times of tattoos being a problem professionally are, if not lifeless, then a minimum of on life help and furrowing the brows of onlookers. To single out academics appears nearly quaint.