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  1. #1
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    Getting away from a partner

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    A male colleague at work, was half-joking that he wanted to find a bunch of guys (from our workplace who might be going too) to spend time when he heads down for a work-related conference in Florida (November).

    He said he wasn't as keen as to have his live-in girlfriend on the conference trip where she would go shopping, etc. and do stuff she wanted.

    I was bemused and slightly puzzled. He's not a macho guy, but clearly has stuff he likes to do guy stuff in his leisure time. Or with guys.
    _______________________________________________________

    Whereas my partner over the years, if he wants to get "away", or needs headspace, he goes solo for weeks, occasionally months, on his own self-made bike trips. He too hangs out with men, but he rarely cycles often with other men. Instead it's meetings, stuff related to cycling --both business and volunteer.

    I know in his 20'-30's, he went drinking occasionally with some guys...but always from work. But he voluntarily eased out of that later long before he met me. He doesn't go drinking out with guys. It just naturally is him.

    He gets along great with his younger brother. It has been/is the closest male relationship he has in his life.

    I'm probably on the female side, similar: It's been YEARS since I've gone out with a bunch of close female friends for a "girls' night". Do I miss anything? I don't think so. I'm not a "tomboy" since clearly I grew up with 4 sisters and know/did some "female" stuff. I am part of female dominant profession. But I spend good but rare times with my closest (female) friends because they are far away.

    I actually took me awhile to become accustomed working professionally in male dominant organizations. Seems like this gender imbalance existed for 80% of all the organizations I've worked for. You would think I would want a "girls' night" from time to time.

    But it doesn't didn't quite exist. If it happens, great. If not, that's fine too.

    I haven't quite figured it out except for sure, dearie and I were always GLAD 1 of us had a work conference so that the other could come along for the "free" ride of hotel and holiday post-conference.
    Last edited by shootingstar; 08-20-2011 at 05:07 AM.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    I'm not quite sure I understand what you're getting at. I know plenty of people--men and women--who need/want to spend time with a group of friends of their own gender without their SO. My husband has a close set of friends from childhood who love to get together. I'm welcome to tag along, but I usually don't. None of them are "macho men." Some, like me, like to spend time with one or two close girlfriends; I don't like big groups in general and, in particular, big groups of women. But, whatvever. Different strokes for different folks. I'm not sure what there is to be puzzled or bemused by.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  3. #3
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    Jan 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by indysteel View Post
    I'm not quite sure I understand what you're getting at. I know plenty of people--men and women--who need/want to spend time with a group of friends of their own gender without their SO. My husband has a close set of friends from childhood who love to get together. I'm welcome to tag along, but I usually don't. None of them are "macho men." Some, like me, like to spend time with one or two close girlfriends; I don't like big groups in general and, in particular, big groups of women. But, whatvever. Different strokes for different folks. I'm not sure what there is to be puzzled or bemused by.
    Yes, Indy, just how I feel too.
    "My predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved;I have been given much and I have given something in return...Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and an adventure." O. Sacks

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    167
    I love my husband (of almost 25 years) dearly, yet I am always REALLY happen for him to go away. I think time alone makes our relationship stronger. I have tagged along on a work trip and really hated it, so I stay home now. I am a homebody at heart, so I don't really like to be away from my puppies for very long.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
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    I'm more like you, ShootingStar.
    Neither of us have the desire to "be away" from each other, other for than the normal work related things. I have woman friends, the closest whom we are couple friends with. I have friends from grad school, which is more just me/professional. Might do an occasional lunch, etc. I have people I know from cycling and from work, but the socializing there is, well, I ride with the cycling people and frankly, as the years have gone on, I no longer am social friends with work people.
    DH does not really socialize with other guys, other than sometimes riding with someone. He is the most unmacho male around, but I am not sure if that has anything to do with it. About ten years ago, we belonged to the "Newcomers" Club in our old town. We joined it for social reasons, not because we were new. So, DH went out with the men's group several times and he hated it. They just drank like crazy and he had nothing in common with them. We tried the same thing when we moved to Concord and there wasn't really a connection, there, either.
    We both have jobs where we are dealing with people all day long, in different ways. As DH has moved up in the business world, he sees the home more as an oasis. He traveled extensively for years (Mon.-Thurs) and we were apart plenty. People think we are weird, because we want to be together so much. But, it works. Our sons are the same way with their wives. We are both independent people who just like being together a lot.
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  6. #6
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    I don't really see why EITHER approach would be "weird". Or any number of other approaches to a happy partnership. It's not like there's only one right way.
    "My predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved;I have been given much and I have given something in return...Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and an adventure." O. Sacks

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by salsabike View Post
    I don't really see why EITHER approach would be "weird". Or any number of other approaches to a happy partnership. It's not like there's only one right way.
    Exactly. That's what struck me about Shootingstar's OP. I don't get why she found it odd or even noteworthy that her coworker likes to spend time with male friends away from his GF. For the same reason, I don't find it odd or noteworthy that there are people who prefer to spend time with their SO. Like I said, different strokes for different folks.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by salsabike View Post
    I don't really see why EITHER approach would be "weird". Or any number of other approaches to a happy partnership. It's not like there's only one right way.
    I guess...it just sounded (to me) he doesn't seem to want spend vacation time in another place far away with her.

    The more I realize: he took a free hotel ride on her conference work trip in Quebec City recently, just 2 months ago. Wouldn't it be nice ...a free of hotel conference trips' exchange among 2 partners?

    I know she does a certain amount of business travel in other parts of Canada but his doesn't require business travel. He sits 50 ft. away from my work cubicle.

    This past spring they both won a hospital fundraiser lottery of $70,000 which they took in lieu of a Lexus car. She wanted to go on a vacation in Italy. He definitely didn't. So maybe she'll do her own thing... Whatever.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  9. #9
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    I just find it interesting that people are so different!
    I didn't want to travel, either, for years. It was a moot point when we didn't have any money! I wasn't ever jealous when DH went on business trips to exotic places.
    I got more interested in travel when DS #1 went to Italy to study, and haven't looked back since. DH and I are the same kinds of travelers, though. I still have issues with time zones and getting sick from travel, but I deal with it. Some of this is from my birth family, who never went anywhere out of New England.
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
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    It is funny because I have some girl friends I'll occasionally go away with for a weekend, but I always miss DH terribly. But, at the same time, it's good to be with the "girls." Normally we don't like getting away from each other.

    DH has 2-3 friends that he'll hike or ride with once a week. I have a couple of girl friends I try to run or bike with too on a regular basis. Just the couple hours of "me" time does seem to balance out the relationship. DH gets cranky when he doesn't get out for his ride with his buddies and I'm the same way.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by shootingstar View Post
    I guess...it just sounded (to me) he doesn't seem to want spend vacation time in another place far away with her.

    The more I realize: he took a free hotel ride on her conference work trip in Quebec City recently, just 2 months ago. Wouldn't it be nice ...a free of hotel conference trips' exchange among 2 partners?

    I know she does a certain amount of business travel in other parts of Canada but his doesn't require business travel. He sits 50 ft. away from my work cubicle.

    This past spring they both won a hospital fundraiser lottery of $70,000 which they took in lieu of a Lexus car. She wanted to go on a vacation in Italy. He definitely didn't. So maybe she'll do her own thing... Whatever.
    Whatever is right. I've stopped investing much energy in the seemingly puzzling and bemusing travel decisions of my coworkers. None of them travel the way I like to travel (or simply don't travel at all). I used to ponder it; now I just say bon voyage (or happy staycation). Travel, IMO, really demonstrates people's vast differences.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    The taiga
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    Quote Originally Posted by shootingstar View Post
    I guess...it just sounded (to me) he doesn't seem to want spend vacation time in another place far away with her.

    The more I realize: he took a free hotel ride on her conference work trip in Quebec City recently, just 2 months ago. Wouldn't it be nice ...a free of hotel conference trips' exchange among 2 partners? [...]
    The situation and our discussion of it looks to me like an overlay of "people are different and have different needs and preferences, and that's ok" and "some [many!] people's relationships suck". Unlike you, I don't know the couple involved, and most of us are polite enough to assume the nicer option when we don't know. My partner has a very strong need for "alone time" when I don't, and I've learnt to accept that this is not about me or our relationship at all, but about what she needs to stay in balance. I have different needs.

    This said, "guy stuff" or even outright sex-oriented entertainment aimed at groups of heterosexual men at the margins of conferences and work meetings is still striving and several of my female friends have at one point run with surprise into what their completely normal and charming male co-workers get up to when no women are around. And they'd certainly avoided bringing girlfriends along.
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  13. #13
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    So, DH went out with the men's group several times and he hated it. They just drank like crazy and he had nothing in common with them.
    I think dearie did visit bars as well as restaurants and chat up with people from work, etc. in his 20's -30's. He recognized that type of socializing as just part of networking, etc.

    If he drinks, it's wine, in particular red wine. He has always hated beer and cocktails bore him. He's not being snooty. Come on, he is German and knows beer, beer-relate jokes/culture, etc.
    But also his stepfather sometimes drank too much and was rough with his mom. So probably another reason why he doesn't associate drinking much or anything, as necessary for a good time with people.

    Either of us enjoy socializing with other cyclists after a ride, an event. But it's not a regular thing because neither of us belong to cycling club where we each go on regular rides. Never, say never. But right now, neither of us have a powerful incentive.

    But yes, things are never what it appears to outsiders of what goes on within a marriage/couple.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
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    There are plenty of gender specific group activities that one can do that don't involved drinking, partying or bars. I love my all female mountain biking weekends. I find them refreshing, and the fact that I like to do it ( or that DH goes away boating with his guy friends) doesn't bother me or him at all.

    I certainly don't frame it as "getting away from".

    And who are we to judge and comment on other people's relationship? Life is so much simpler if one keeps the focus on themself and what they are doing.
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  15. #15
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    Apr 2011
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    I've been married forever.

    My spouse and I spend close to 6 months of the year apart. I spend winters in the south, he for the most part in the north. I travel with my sister, going on birding adventures. I visit friends that he doesn't especially like.

    If we were together all the time someone would not be left standing.

 

 

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