From “I” to “we”

by singlemomseeking on September 17, 2011

Every Friday, we meet with our contractors– a team of five guys  — who sit around the table with us to chat about our addition and answer questions.

Whenever I talk to these guys, I’m very conscious about saying “we” as in:

“We decided to go with a dual low-flush toilet that uses less water.”

“We have definitely made up our minds about solar panels on the roof.”

Well, sometimes, Thunderpants forgets to say “we.”

He says, “I want LED lights in the bedroom.”

And, “I’ve made up my mind about the shower plumbing.”

I meet his eyes, gritting my teeth, as I think, “But, honey, WE stayed up late making those decisions last night. I was right there.”

In my past relationships, I haven’t always chosen to be with men who’ve seen me. I can get sensitive when I feel like I’m not being seen. When it comes to language — “I” vs. “we” — I guess being a writer affects me, too.

Don’t get me wrong: he’s getting a lot better remembering that it’s about us now. He’ll tell me later, “I’m sorry, love. I just forget sometimes. But I’m trying.”

We both continue to try.

In fact, yesterday the lead contractor told us: “I know I don’t see what goes on behind the scenes, but you two seem to make decisions really well together.”

We laughed. “Yeah, come behind the scenes sometime–.”

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristin_OPC September 17, 2011 at 6:46 pm

I am so feeling you on this! I know that I need to make a concerted effort, as my beau transitions into my home, to use we statements instead of me statements.
.-= Kristin_OPC´s last blog ..Lovable Labels Back to School Pack – Giveaway =-.

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Caroline September 17, 2011 at 7:57 pm

Do you feel like you are giving up who you are by using we over I ? I understand that the decisions about your house are a “we” thing, but does it become an identity issue? I’ve been a “I” for 6 years now and I wonder if I could easily say “we” in a relationship w/o feeling like I was giving up control.

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singlemomseeking September 19, 2011 at 8:46 am

@Caroline: It’s true that making this transition from “I” to “we” has been challenging. For more than a decade for each of us, we’ve made all decisions solo. Neither of us was used to checking in with each other before making plans. Now, we do — and it doesn’t feel like such a big deal anymore. (It took some getting used to for both of us!)
I’ll also add that we are both independent (thank goodness!) and have our own lives outside of our relationship. Feeling like we were “giving up control” was a big issue for the first six months of our relationship… and now I guess we realize that at the end of the day, we’re not giving up — but gaining.

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rachael September 17, 2011 at 9:26 pm

i think it would drive me crazy if the “we” wasn’t utilized. but i guess when you are single so long, it is hard to transition.

i’m glad for you that others notice that you guys communicate to each other. that makes me happy :)
.-= rachael´s last blog ..2 things happened.. a positive and a negative. =-.

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Avigail September 18, 2011 at 7:51 am

Perfect example this morning~ “I” was hungry and made only “me” breakfast~ boy, did I get in trouble with “him”? I still am trying to remember “we” in all areas of our life. After 7 years of just “Me”~ turning that capital “M” upside down to make a “W” for we ain’t easy but is getting easier with time :)
.-= Avigail´s last blog ..The Four Day Trip =-.

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Jamie September 19, 2011 at 8:43 am

I think this is such a common issues in couples – I don’t know if any couple ever totally gets it figured out!!!

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Lil'Devil Mama September 19, 2011 at 4:48 pm

Love this one!!! In all my relationships since the Bio, I have had a tough time with being a ‘we’ with anyone and I think I’ve always fought it by choosing men who didn’t see me. In this new relationship, I find myself appreciating how much effort the Boyfriend puts out to be a part of my life and I don’t mind the ‘we’ as much as I used to.

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singlemomseeking September 19, 2011 at 5:24 pm

@Lil’Devil Mama: That describes me to a “T,” too: I never chose men who could see me… until now. Bravo!

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Late Night Coffee September 19, 2011 at 5:22 pm

This is a good lesson to remember. Semantics can be irritatingly disregarding in some ways…..and joyously bonding in others.

“Mindful words”…easier said than done….but oh, so important.

Great post!
.-= Late Night Coffee´s last blog ..More deals and more fun! =-.

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Deaf singles September 20, 2011 at 4:32 pm

That’s awesome that he sees you most of the time, even when he forgets. If he’s trying to be conscious of it, that’s even better! WAAAY better than most men will ever do!

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barak September 24, 2011 at 2:22 am

We laughed. “Yeah, come behind the scenes sometime–.” LOL!
Most of the people like to show how they act as a great couple.
its good to be honest with yourself and friends.
.-= barak´s last blog ..Dog limping on a back leg =-.

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Nicki September 26, 2011 at 7:14 am

Ummm. Okay. I’m the one who’s is guilty most of the time in that department. He’s really great at we. Me…well, I’ve never had much experience with ‘we.’ Even when I was married, there was no ‘we’ as a couple. ‘We’ was how I referred to me and the kids.

Second marriage is off to a much better start…
.-= Nicki´s last blog ..Slave Less, Say YES: DIY Beauty GIVEAWAY =-.

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Naked Girl in a Dress September 28, 2011 at 7:52 am

It is good he recognizes and continues to work on it. Having someone in your life willing to make an effort, to really work at the relationship, that is essential.
.-= Naked Girl in a Dress´s last blog ..How to Make Good Things Happen =-.

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Decorative Concrete Flooring September 30, 2011 at 9:15 am

sounds like fun! i say ditch the “we” and make the decisions yourself ;)
totally joking! keep on blogging girl, i love it! :)

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