I'm sorry I don't feel pain the way you think I should, but...
December 22, 2012 3:04 AM Subscribe
A couple of weeks ago, I moved out of my marital home (details in my posting history). Whilst I seem to be doing okay, most people expect me to not be. In fact, they seem to expect a fragility and sadness from me that I'm not feeling even remotely. This has lead to some judgements from people that I could have done without.
How can I navigate the sympathy of folks during the holiday season without having to pretend to be an emotional mess (which I'm not) and without suffering judgement from people who don't know the whole story (Which I can happily live without).
posted by six sided sock to Human Relations (27 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Since I left I've experienced a range of emotions, but they seem to have settled down since I moved in to my own apartment. I've had help from friends with basic decorations and putting-together of flat-packed furniture, and right now I'm quite content in my new home.
But people seem to think that I shouldn't be. They seem to expect me to be a blubbering wreck, incapable of celebrating Christmas without my wife. Some of them who know us both have pointed out that my wife is very lonely and finds all the accoutrements of Christmas miserable-making, whereas I have gone out and bought myself a tree and had great fun decorating it with friends.
The most judgemental comment I've had so far is that I'm not showing any respect to my marriage by having a good time. I should, it seems, be as miserable and low as I can be, and anything else means that I'm not a good enough estranged husband (or something).
These comments are coming from people that I can't really avoid contact with, as they're either family or close family friends. I'm going to be spending the next couple of weeks away from my hometown exactly so I can avoid things, but whilst I'm here people seem keen to drop their opinions on me without asking.
So, Mefites, how can I either avoid being judged or at least gently discourage them from sharing their judgements with me when I don't want them?