I told my wife I wanted lunch and a new set of earbuds

I told my wife I wanted lunch and a new set of earbuds

You should say you want to be left alone for the day. When I finally started doing this it was amazing. You cannot believe how freeing it is to ask for (and expect to get) what you want for yourself. Be unapologetic and just say that you need a day of peace for yourself and you are going to take it. Then encourage your wife to do the same for herself.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder.

There isn't anything wrong with wanting some time alone.

I would say the point of lying is to avoid upsetting your partner. (though i do agree with personal time) I'm just explaining the point of lying is all.

Well I'd be pretty hurt if my girlfriend didn't want me around on her birthday.

I agree. What's the point in lying?

Yeah. Some people want to avoid the "you don't want to be with me on your birthday?" question that will probably follow.

She had already made a buncha plans like weeks in advance. And I tried to hint that I just wanted to be alone and she looked really hurt (and angry) so I was just like, "Babe, I was joking. Of course I want to go to that new restaurant that's 90 minutes away for lunch and then go shopping at the mall and then go grocery shopping".

So that was my day today.

So would I to be honest.

Wait... Absence? Fucking godammit! I thought it was absinthe makes the heart grow fonder. That explains all those empty depressed drunken nights I've had.

Everybody needs a little time away

I heard her say

From each other

Even lovers need a holiday

Far away

From each other

The CEO of Toyota is beset by crippling, foul-smelling farts.

They rattle the windows, water the eyes of passers-by, cause small children to burst into tears, and wilt nearby houseplants, but that's not the worst thing.

The sound of these farts sound exhaust like the exhaust note of Honda Civic. It's embarrassing, and detrimental to the business life of the Toyota CEO to have farts that sound like a rival's car, so no expense is spared in curing him. Everybody immediately recognises the farts as Honda exhausts notes.

He goes to doctors. Specialists. University professors. Tries every known cure, every experimental cure, anything, anything at all to rid him of this embarrassing malady.

Finally, in desperation, he travels to a remote village in China. The last person on earth who he hopes can cure him is a herbalist in a tiny village, perched on top of a mountain.

The herbalist nods. Asks the CEO to demonstrate the problem.

The CEO cocks one leg, and lets rip with a mighty arse-blast that echoes off the walls of the valley bellow, sending animals fleeing.

It sounds, of course, exactly like a Honda Civic.

Immediately, the herbalist nods.

"You have abscess," the herbalist says.

"Really? I've tried every doctor! No one's been able to give me a diagnosis! Are you sure?"

"Yes. Certain."

"How can you possibly know that, just by listening?!"

"Easy," says the herbalist, "Everybody know abscess make the fart go Honda."

Damn sucks. You're going to have to tell her a lot sooner before she makes plans. Sounds like she was upset that her plans had to be cancelled more than you wanting to be alone

You need to tell your wife what you really want. Plus, even though you are her favorite person, it frees her up to do what she wants too.

I'm pretty sure /u/scootsah's girlfriend doesn't want me around for her birthday, but you won't see me getting upset about it.

As someone who prefers to be alone on my birthday, have my upvote.

Sounds like she was upset that her plans had to be cancelled more than you wanting to be alone

And I tried to hint that I just wanted to be alone and she looked really hurt (and angry)

That's the thing, OP's partner only made a face. OP made it sound like he then abruptly changed his tune without seeking more dialog. We have no idea why she looked upset, that question wasn't asked.

At least listen to why your partner would make that face. And then from there, seek to understand what they want in order to make a compromise that also gets you what you want as well.

If a fair compromise can't be reached, heh, well, guess you're going to find out the things you'll do for someone you love.

Yeah, partners want to celebrate with you, it makes them feel bad if you don't want them there. You can always ask for alone time, special events are a different beast and people will get hurt. I make sure my husband gets time to himself, I know he's a separate person who has his own interests and even though we often enjoy the same things, sometimes you just need to be alone. I love spending time with my husband, but sometimes you just need to be yourself separate from them or else you can feel like you no longer exist and you are losing yourself.

Personally I'm the opposite. I want someone to spend the day with someone on my birthday because I'm alone every day.

Some people don't feel a need to be left alone, and can't empathize with those who do. They tend to see it as needing time away from them, rather than time away from people in general (or even just familiar people in general).

Hey you can't do both parts

I had married friends who ended up getting divorced because they couldn't reconcile alone time. One of them worked with customers all day every day, and the other worked from home and basically didn't talk to anyone all day. So when the first one would get home the other was desperate for human contact and wanted to be right up their ass for the whole time until they went to bed. Understandable. But the customer service one needed some hours to just not fucking talk to anyone. Also understandable. So that one would decompress by starting a fight, which they couldn't do at work but wanted to, and escalating it until the stay at home would storm off.

Not the greatest situation.

"Oh being with me makes you miserable? You want to be alone? I'm leaving you and you can have all the alone time you want, asshole."

You're clearly already single.

It is probably best to get your day alone not on your bday then.

as someone who cant remember the last time anyone did anything for my birthday be careful what you wish for.

Where I work we write everyone's birthday on a calendar. This year I paid the person who makes the calendar $10 to leave mine off

I will straight up ask if my boyfriend wants to be left alone.. especially after he's come home from work, since a lot of people need to wind down at that point in the day.

I've never given someone gold while sober, but I felt this was well worth it.

I hear ya. For fathers day my 5 year old made me a card, we went to brunch, i had to work, now he's sleeping and the wife is home with him. I'm at a bar alone enjoying my first beer of the weekend. That's all i wanted, and it tastes amazing.

Ask for the peace day for a gift.

Don't ask to spend your birthday alone. Tell her you'd like to spend your birthday with her, but have another day where you get a few hours of relaxation.

Hoooold me now.

Ah the ol' reddit girlfriend-a-roo. Hold my solitude, I'm goin' in!

EDIT: It turns out I don't know how this works.

I want nothing.

Every year they ask and every year I say I want nothing. I still get shit. I'm not being nice. I'm not giving hints. I want you to get me nothing. Just once. NOTHING

Hold my solitude, I'm goin..... wait. You stole my line. Primadonna.

Thank God someone said it. On a normal day, sure, alone time is healthy and everyone needs it. On your birthday? I'd assume something about your birthday was bringing you down and all I'd wanna do is try make it better. I can't imagine how helpless I'd feel thinking my SO didn't need me to make him feel better when he's down.

It is my husband's birthday today. I baked him a cake, am cooking his favourite food for dinner and then letting him chill out with his favourite movie. I asked what he wanted to do today and he just shrugged, so that's usually my default. Let him do whatever he wants to do, be it computer games or a movie on the sofa. It is his birthday. I used to make more plans earlier on in our marriage, but now I ask, and if he shrugs I plan nothing and let him chill.

But seriously... you need to communicate things like that more clearly. It isn't your job to please your wife on your birthday. If only to make sure future birthday's don't turn out the same way.

Some people want to have extravagant birthdays, so they assume others are the same if they aren't firmly told otherwise.

Also, happy birthday!

People often do for their partners what they want for themselves. This is her way of showing affection. There's nothing wrong with you asking for what you truly want, but bear* in mind that you should then be just as receptive to what she wants when it's her birthday etc.

Its weird how we want solitude the more attention we get, and we want more atenttion the more lonely we feel

You're right on the money. The need to be away from familiar people relieves the need to "meet expectations" which can be very hard on a sole breadwinner of a family or oldest child of a family (or anyone who feels expectations on them--just two examples). My wife was out of town for my birthday last year and while I of course missed her, having an expectation-free day where I did what I wanted was very nice.

I've been happily married for 26 years and we recently became empty nesters. Today it was 111 degrees outside and we both spent the entire day in the house doing exactly what we wanted for ourselves. My husband watched boring documentaries on the history channel while I read in the recliner and when I couldn't stand that background noise anymore I left the room. Our youngest came over and took his dad out to dinner but it was too hot for me to leave so I stayed home. And no one cared. Because we are a partnership.

I find it hard to believe you are in a happy relationship if you are afraid that asking for what you want from your partner will result in that person leaving and calling you an asshole. Sounds miserable. I hope it gets better.


As someone who is always alone on his birthday, all I want for my birthday is to share it with someone who cares.

Can you clone yourself. Or spread this message of peace and love.

It's hard for me to say I'm sorry

this has never worked for me.

I was afraid to tell my GF I needed more space and alone time. I was afraid she would get upset and hurt. She did. Over and over.

Eventually she saw a therapist to work on her self esteem issues and has improved a lot. I'm finally at a place where I don't feel like I have to lie to avoid upsetting her, and I can do my own thing when I want to.

Some people can't accept it, and I imagine many of those people won't change like my GF did. So you either suck it up and bury your desire to be alone, or you have horrible fights, or you split up.

That's real life though. Ain't always pretty.

I'm sorry. I realize i made a rude comment. I just assumed that you were making a "life is easy" post as some anonymous basement dweller.

Congrats on making your marriage work and finding your happy medium together.

I am quite happy with my wife actually. We're going on 5 years now.

I was just reading all the comments about people saying "just ask for a day off" and couldn't help but laugh because we have a 10 and 3 year old. Our oldest is pretty easy because he has his hobbies and stuff but still needs mom and dad, but the 3 year old is still very dependent on us for nearly everything.

I was just telling my wife tonight that later this year I'd love to watch a Texans game start to finish with no interruptions and she said she will try to make that happen! Lol

I was just being a sour puss because the little ones demand your attention so much and I haven't had one of those "me days" in a while.

Again. My bad 😓

Birthdays are special and meant for celebration to most people. When you say you don't want to celebrate your birthday or that you want to be alone, people tend to see that as a sad and depressive thing. Like you are depressed. Sometimes those people think "well we need to show them that we really care so much so that we're going out and doing all these things just for them!!!"

But you make a good point about a wife and stuff, which is what the guy I replied to was talking about. I made that comment thinking about friends and family. I think a wife or a close girlfriend would be more understanding.

Yeah the birthday thing alone isn't realistic. But I wouldn't have a problem if my husband said that's what he wanted for himself. We would have a birthday dinner with the kids on a different day. It's just a day. We don't need to make everything so complicated.

Same here, married in my mid 30s. Its all about how you ask. Id just tell her we can def do something together on my bday but for my present i want to pick a day where i can just chill by myself.

Maybe he knows that face, though. Sometimes that face is the last chance to stop the Angry Train from picking up speed.

I know that face. That face does not want to reason and work things out. Do that later when the mean machine is gone. When that face comes out, your only mission is to do or say whatever it takes to de escalate.

It helps to have a friend advocate as well. I was exhausted mentally from stating a new job and too many social engagements so I missed a birthday party my wife went to. Luckily one of my friends was there who understands what it's like to be in that mood and he let everyone know that when I, or anyone else, says they don't feel up to being social, it's OK. He's a good dude.

For the record, my wife gains energy from being around people and I get energy from being alone. It actually works out okay because we're honest with each other on both sides.

Happy birthday to your husband! This is pretty much what I do with mine as well. Except I didn't want to bake a cake (I was in the first trimester of my pregnancy during his bday and very, very nauseous), so I bought one at Wal-Mart and attempted to decorate it with the Super Smash Bros Melee character that he mains. I then left him alone to play video games all day. He loved it! 

This was the cake.

Happy birthday to your husband! This is pretty much what I do with mine as well. Except I didn't want to bake a cake (I was in the first trimester of my pregnancy during his bday and very, very nauseous), so I bought one at Wal-Mart and attempted to decorate it with the Super Smash Bros Melee character that he mains. I then left him alone to play video games all day. He loved it!

Things always come with some sort of debt...more storage. More cleaning. Perhaps one more thing to charge. Maybe a thank you note needs to get bought, written, and sent. Maybe just remembering who got it for you so you don't douche them later.

Unless something's your hobby or there's a legit need, tools are a terrible gift. Here, I'm going to give you something that'll mean you can take on even more projects!

I'm with you. Sometimes legit nothing would be better.

I understand her. It's the birthday of a person she really loves and she made plans, only to be told that his biggest wish is spending the day away from her.

I agree that days alone are good, but I fully understand how she feels in that situation. It could be any other day, it could be a wish for next weekend etc. No, instead OP wants her to cancel everything she tried to put thought into and sends her away.

reddit tends to skew towards some... odd... relationship dynamics. I think most people would in fact feel hurt if their SO told them they didn't want them around on their birthday. It's a day for celebration with loved ones.

Honestly I don't really know what would lead a person to not want to spend time with their SO on their birthday.

That is unacceptable. Are you married? Pay attention to what your wife wants. Do you have a hobby? Plan a day to do it and announce that is what you are doing. Make yourself important. If a new video game comes out announce that you are spending an entire day or night or weekend playing it. Talk about how you are doing that so everyone in the house is aware then DO IT.

If House of Cards is your show, announce you will be watching House of Cards all day on Saturday and don't want to be interrupted. If someone wants to join you make a big deal about it and say it's ok but they can't interrupt or bother you. Or say you don't want them to watch with you because you are going to skip the boring parts. If they insist they don't care and then complain remind them this was your thing.

Make yourself important once in a while. If you act like you matter others will treat you like you do. Then treat them like they are important. Give them their own time for their own thing. If you are an adult and can't take one day a few times a year just for you then you need to examine why and make it happen.

I turn 21 in a few days and everyone keeps asking what im doing/want to do for my birthday. Truth is I want to just come home from work, lay in bed all night playing games and go to bed early. I feel like my 21st will be the lamest 21st birthday in all of existent.

It's just a day. Pick another day for you alone day and be happy your wife cares enough to make plans weeks in advance.

It's what keeps us going. Only a dead man wants nothing and needs nothing.

Humans are never ultimately satisfied.

Why? It is perfectly normal to just want alone time or a day of rest for yourself.

There's always that one or two that can't process a request like this.

My response is to ask them to donate what they'd spend on my present to a charity instead. Not in my name or anything, just donate.

If they kick up about THAT, then they're more interested in how they feel than how you feel and can be treated accordingly.

I think there are some people who try to be who thier partner wants to be, instead of being truthful about who they are and what they want. When you start a relationship that way, its harder and harder to change it.

You rock. I hope your life is a happy one.

Hmm I definitely never thought of it as "absence makes the heart grow fonder." I just want to be left the hell alone sometimes. So I can think and stuff.

I am the person in the relationship that likes to be left alone sometimes. My boyfriend is super affectionate almost alllll the time. I get home from work about 1.5 hours before he does. I love it. I get time to just not speak. He will ask me sometimes if I am angry, I'm not, I just get tired of talking sometimes.

Go smoke this joint I rolled for you , play some vidya and let's catch up in an hour , I'm going to jerk off. You can join me.

Holy shit, calm down. No need to call someone's kid a mistake just because you don't want one.

yeah, a birthday is important for both sides of the relationship. sometimes your birthday is more important to your family and loved ones than it is to you. sometimes they want to do things to show that they appreciate you, and not being given the chance to do that hurts them.

it's nice to be alone sometimes, but i guess in this case since the wifey already planned everything, might as well roll with it, lol. i hope you find another day to be alone OP! even lovers need a holiday from each other, i agree!

yeah, a birthday is important for both sides of the relationship. sometimes your birthday is more important to your family and loved ones than it is to you

agree 100%.

If you tell your family you don't want to see them on your birthday they're going to be insulted.

Take the relaxation day some other time.

Well, see, now I feel like a dick.

No worries. I'm not trying to say life or even marriage is easy. It isn't. It seems easy for me now because I've been married for 26 years and we've raised two great kids who turned out ok. Life got easier for us as we got older, grew up and figured some things out. And one of the biggest things I feel makes a great marriage is common courtesy. For some reason we tend to take our partners for granted. Not just about time but about household chores, parenting duties, sex, etc. I see all of these posts and comments from people who talk about never having sex in their marriage. What the hell?! This is not ok. How can two people in a marriage think this is acceptable? Older, and more mature me has this amazing answer to the problem and it is "if you realize you haven't had sex this week, make time for it even if you don't want to." Sounds simple, but that comes after years of figuring things out. Sometimes seeing another happy marriage gives us great ideas. I know a couple and the husband's office is a disaster. Piles of shit everywhere. One time I said to the wife "I can't believe you let your husband's office look like that." She laughed at me and said she has no say over his personal space. It is his office, why would she ever tell him what to do in "his" room? Such a simple observation that hadn't occurred to me. We all deserve our own "space" in our homes. After that I started taking some for myself and it made all the difference in my relationship.

I guess what I'm saying is my secret to a happy marriage is a little bit of selfishness but not too much.

All I ever want for my birthday is for people to remember it. I may not care about it, but I like when people wish me a happy birthday

Thats my daily wish

I'm sorry to hear that. I'm not the type of person to be bothered by being alone, I'm ok with it. I guess that's a good thing cause I have a hard time making friends. (too shy and too weird I guess) I am aware of how much it can bother other people though. I try to make sure my friends and family don't get too lonely, especially around holidays.

sole bread winner here, will agree! sent the family 3000 miles away on Monday and I do miss them, but I just had the most relaxing fathers day ever. they are gone until July 2nd. they are relaxing, i'm relaxing and working from home. everyone is having a great time, here and there.

I sometimes come on reddit and think all married men are secretly miserable and I worry about my husband.

Absinthe makes the heart black out.

It's not OP who answered on your first comment ;)

When's your birthday?

Birthday wishes at work are the actual worst. The first office job I had, signing a card and gathering around to sing Happy Birthday were mandatory. Nothing says "empty birthday wishes" like that.

Facebook is a half step down from that. You're not going to get fired for not writing on someone's timeline but FB is going to remind you of it as much as it can on that day, so most people give in.

My girlfriend does the same, even if I don't take up the offer it's still nice knowing that I can just have time off by myself

better nate than lever.

I'm just messing around congrats on your healthy relationship

I'm the wife. And several times a year I announce that I am spending all day in bed reading/watching TV and don't want to be bothered. I think it is perfectly reasonable to demand some free time doing whatever you want once in a while. I have no problem with my husband doing this either.


I was thinking along the same lines as /u/itallbends. Expressing what you want is critical for a successful relationship but how you do that is also important. If you hurt someones feelings expressing your opinions it is natural for them to say "that makes me feel shit". Instead of "I don't want to be with you today" a more reasonable approach might be "I feel like I need some quiet time by myself". That means it isn't specifically them you don't want to be with.

Also a birthday might not be the day to do that. I would feel pretty shit if my partner didn't let me do anything for them on their birthday.

Not every woman plays mind games. In fact most don't.

Nothing beats a celebration that entails sitting outside the changing room for a few hours. Did you get the "you cook, I'm too tired" as well.

Absinthe makes my heart a slut

And some women

Is a big booty ho...

I just waaant you to stayyyy

I can't believe you said that.

tomorrow if you wanna send me some money..

No thanks. I've been happily married for 26 years.

we're honest with each other

This is the key. I never want to leave the house; my husband loves to go shopping and run errands. Every so often I go with him. It makes him so happy. And because I don't have to do it very often and I appreciate he does it all for our family I make it fun for him when I go. He makes fun of me for being shut in but totally allows me to do my thing. Sometimes he goes to parties with me and sometimes I go. The wants and expectations of other people don't take up a lot of space in our relationship. We are happy and don't let other people ruin our nice time by pressuring us into going to events or making judgments about our choices.

You shouldn't have to me stressed out and exhausted to be excused from a party.

And for the people who just shrug, then complain later nothing special was done for them, then tough shit. Part of being an adult is asking for what you want. Especially when someone is seeking your input about what would make you happy. I am so tired of adults not being willing to state a preference for things.

"Yes, dear" is the magic phrase to make the wind stop when you finally get tired of pissing into it.

So here is some really good advise. Tell your wife, shes your life partner.

Tell her in a loving way, "Babe, I love you (if you have kids put them here too) , but sweetie, if I could have a day to just do some guy stuff alone, that would make me very happy" ...

OKAY, if shes a normal woman like mine, she would understand.

However, if you are dating a crazy girl, yeah just bottle that all up. If your smart just take her to the mall and then just slip away while shes doing girl stuff, you can leave your cell phone on silent and pretend it was an accident. Then, maybe get a cinnabon all by yourself and dont even think about sharing it, thats your god damn cinnibon.

How is this so hard to understand?

By not straight-forwardly communicating your desires to your partners or others at appropriate times.

Now, how people you care about react to your reasonable requests is a whole different concern.

Hooolld me now-OW

No way! If my gf wasn't cool with it, I'd just have to say, "I'm an introvert. Need to be alone. Or I'm going to lose my mind"

Just saw Chicago in concert yesterday in Dallas!

That would definitely hurt her feelings. How about be alone on a regular day and spending your birthday with her.

I say nothing because no one can afford what I want every year when my birthday rolls around. I'm an electronics guy so shit cost money and wages haven't grown.

Edit: I just enjoy spending time with my family, I might not remember the day but they will so their enjoying it is enough.