Had a couple of comments, and an e-mail, asking for more details/examples on last week’s Wait, let me get in your way post.
One classic way of doing this is offering help that is not desired, and is counter-productive for how she does things:
- Reorganizing something that she uses far more often than you do. Being “better” or “more logical” is no help if it doesn’t work for her.
- Helping, without asking, in a way that makes more work for her or forces her to do something right away. For example, “cleaning out” a closet and leaving piles of things she must dispose of or find a new place to keep.
- Starting a project that she will have to finish before she is ready.
Other ways of getting in her way are:
- Giving her tasks when she is trying to finish something, or making something you want from her a higher priority that it should be.
- Bringing things to her attention when she is busy.
- Scheduling something that will conflict with a time she has set aside for some specific task.
- Not being available to help with the kids – especially if you make plans that will leave you unavailable when your help with the kids is really needed.
- Repeatedly “forgetting” or “not having time” to do some small thing she needs from you to proceed with what she is working on. Not fixing something is a prime example of this.
- Not being available when she needs your help to move forward with what she is doing.
- Keeping her from having materials she needs (I forgot to buy that again, I’m sorry).
I think many men get in the way often, and I think much of it is a subconscious desire to limit or control. Sure, some of it is being clueless – but how long is clueless a valid defence?
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