Her Way Or The Highway

Her Way Or The Highway

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She’s more interested in defending herself than in acknowledging how I feel about something and what’s bothering me.
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This week, Doc Love, author of “The System,” explains to a reader why his girlfriend’s not perfect.

Hey Doc,

I’ve been your student for a year and a half now, and following your principles has helped me to win the heart of (in my eyes and heart) the most beautiful, generous, giving and flexible woman in the world. We’ve been dating for seven months now and are so happy together. I am 31 and she is 24, by the way. Armed with “The System,” I managed to get Ani’s Interest Level sky high, while not letting her know that I’m head over heels for her. Her main concern is that I will someday get sick of her or cheat on her, that she is too lucky and somehow doesn’t deserve me. Our squabbles have been about me not calling first, or enough or texting her good morning — things of this nature. And it’s good because it shows that she wants to be with me. I do everything to be a gentleman and never pressure her.

The problem: When we argue, every time I bring up how I feel or why I’m upset, she immediately thinks about herself first. For example, she’ll say “Well, how about how I feel?” or go into denial mode right away. She’s more interested in defending herself than in acknowledging how I feel about something and what’s bothering me.

What do you make of this? Is Ani afraid to be wrong? Maybe she doesn’t know better? Or maybe she does genuinely care more about herself? And how would I know which is the case? In our fights I make the first concession in order to warm her up, though I only apologize when I’m in the wrong. Is this pattern something that will persist for the next 40 years?

After our last fight Ani texted to say that we should take a couple days to calm down, and I didn’t reply. I want to show her I care, but that I can stay strong and that I have a backbone. Now it’s been a couple of weeks and I haven’t been able to reach Ani by phone. Your coaching in this hour of need would be greatly appreciated.

Jarrett – who is confused and worried

Hi Jarrett,

First of all, Ani knows that you’re head over heels for her. You’re just not verbalizing it, but you’re showing your high Interest Level through your actions. That said, having her be afraid that you’ll leave her for someone else and thinking that she’s the luckiest girl in the world is the best position to be in.

If Ani’s Interest Level is 95%, you should call her first because you’re not losing any ground. But if it drops to 85%, let her call you. As far as texting goes, I don’t believe in it — period. You say that the fact that Ani bugs you about little things shows that she wants to be with you. But consider this: If she’s structured — which you say she isn’t — your shortcomings and oversights could be irritating her much more than you think. And that makes it an entirely different issue.

You mention the problem of your arguments and that Ani always looks out for herself when you fight. But, Jarrett, why are you arguing in the first place? And how often are you arguing? In seven months, how many arguments have you had? Have you only had two arguments in all that time — which is OK — or are you having two arguments every week, which is something entirely different?
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