I Haven’t Seen any UFO’s at the Little House, But…

IMG_5076There’s a phenomenon that plagues almost every couple I know. It’s the strange mystery surrounding how men can be two feet away from their wives, kids and pets and not hear what’s going on.

I love my husband. It’s not possible to have been with someone for 30 years and to go through everything we’ve been through (we grew up together) and live in such a small space and not love him.

However, I don’t think there will be enough time for us on this earth to figure out this particular puzzle.

Are these sounds like a dog whistle that can only be heard on a certain frequency? I would have thought that living in a small house would have solved this, it hasn’t….

The other day, I left my husband in his chair watching television, with the two little dogs on the futon sofa – not three feet from him – to come over to get something out of the office. When I returned five minutes later, Dakota, our little Beagle/wiener mix (pictured with Dale) was sitting on the edge of the futon, looking very sad and guilty.

“Dale?” I said, pointing to the futon. Poor Dakota had lost her breakfast on the futon and it had sat there long enough to soak through the futon cover and extra padding I had down.

“Sorry. I was watching TV,” he said, as I ripped off the coverings to place them in the washer and went for the fabric shampoo.

We aren’t talking about a little accident here, this was huge – and I know was noisy in the making. Just the other day, I had to clean up a dog mess (Sorry folks, if you have dogs, like children, they get sick sometimes) by wiping up and then mopping the floor – all while I was on a business call – and my interview subject was none the wiser!

Then there was the day I told my husband, “I’m going to my office now to do bills, make sure you pick them up when you leave for town as they need to go out today.” Again, we were in close proximity of each other, getting ready to walk out of The Little House. He answered with an “Ok.” I was a little surprised as he drove right past the office without stopping, but I thought he was headed down to the neighbor’s for something. An hour later, after calling his cell and hearing it ring a few feet from me, I got ready and took the bills to town myself. He finally called me later as I was loading groceries into the truck to see if I needed anything.

This is me with a big (??) above my head!

He blamed it on thinking about the hot water tank he was installing. Fair enough, but can men not multi-task and do something while listening at the same time?

Do men and women really come from two different planets? Do we each exist on our own plane even when we’re in close quarters?
C’mon guys, this just isn’t for the girls. Give us some feedback in the comments section.

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19 Responses

  1. Tiffani says:

    For my husband, it’s the recliner. Once he lays it back, forget talking to him. He’ll never remember what was said. LOL

    Thankfully, he doesn’t hit the chair until most everything’s been taken care of for the day. 😉

  2. You know, this was a skill I wished I had some years ago when the kids were babies. Sometimes babies cry because they need to–sometimes you can’t get to baby 1 because the other child needs are more important. The crying would send my heart rate through the roof. (Still does.. I hate hearing babies cry in the store). My husband was really good at just holding them while they screamed and continued watching the TV or reading the paper. I thought he was just super patient.. now I realize he’s just really great at blocking everything out…

  3. This is so funny! I was laughing when I read it. And you’re living in a little house (littler than ours at apx 1230 sq ft) – so how is it possible to not hear the same thing? I don’t get it!
    Thanks for a fun post 🙂

  4. Cal Olson says:

    This was discussed this at a marriage seminar we went to a few years ago. The truth is, we DO think differently – men think in boxes, and women think in connect-the-dots. (that’s the best visual picture to describe it) Women can multi-task because they see everything relationally – it all connects. Men don’t multi-task well because we think in boxes, giving total attention to one thing at a time. And, we can jump from thought to thought – from box to box – instantly, with no need to know how we got there. My sweetie knows that she has to get my FULL attention if she wants me to remember something, and I know that if I tell her something, I have to make sure to give her all the details, including where this thought came from, what it involves, why I’m thinking about, etc.

    There’s no “better” or “worse” here – the trick is realizing that our brains are wired differently, with strengths and weaknesses in each. We’ve learned to take advantage of these differences, using one’s strength to cover the other’s weakness. 😀 And so far, after 27 years, it seems to be working well.

    • Kerri says:

      Oh, Cal, you’re so right. It’s like anything else in a partnership, you have to work off of each other’s talents. I just wish I knew the code for “Ok,” when it really means “ok,” or when it means, “I’m thinking about something else, and this is a reflex! 🙂
      Thanks for stopping by.

  5. Babette says:

    Word, sister. Word.

  6. Jim says:

    It could be a case of functional autism in an adult. There is a focus that some people have which is very deep and truly blocks out other inputs.

  7. This is known as select hearing. men know us wives will take care of things if they don’t.

    • Kerri says:

      Selective hearing, that’s what my mom used to call it too, Mary.
      Hmm, this goes back to Cal’s point. You guys might be wired different, but why only hear things you want to hear? 🙂

      • Cal Olson says:

        I WISH it was “selective!” 😀 There have been many times when my sweetie told me something, I totally missed it, and she ended up either doing it or getting frustrated with me when I failed to help. I’d love to have a built-in filter for the really essential stuff to make sure it gets through!

        And too true – both on the “taking the shirt off” comment and how the TV is a siren song. That’s why we’re probably gonna pull our cable again – we lived without for 5 years, hooked it up as a trial last January, and have decided that it’s a black hole waiting to suck away my time and attention. Now if I can just make that call… maybe at the next commercial… 😀

        • Kerri says:

          Too funny, Cal.
          You can always use the “winter” excuse for not cutting off the cable. That gives you another 5-6 months lost in the black hole! 🙂

  8. kerri says:

    Oooh, good theory. I hadn’t thought of that one! 🙂

  9. MarthaandMe says:

    I think the tv is a siren song for men. They hear it and it mesmerizes them and they are unable to function.