Today was a good beginning. My OCPD Husband read a long essay on what OCPD actually is and how Significant Others (SO) can learn to cope. We talked about things that are important to both of us and at one point, he asked me how he could manage compromise. I was thrilled that he was reaching out to find ways to deal with his thought processes and situations that cause him lots of tension. He was referring to our discussion, today, about how he has compromised in the past but that was on items that were, say 2 on a rating scale of a possible 10, with 10 being very important and totally unable to be compromised. He agreed. I brought up a few examples that were on a ‘2’ and then…. I steadied myself and (‘drum-roll’) I brought up a ’10’.
He agreed that, indeed, it was a ’10’ and he just couldn’t see himself compromising on it. He tried (in a round-about-way) to shame me for the level that the compromise was on (i.e. replacing a 35 year old refrigerator for which a flashlight is needed to find stuff in the freezer. ) compared to other things that would merit a dissolution of a marriage. He tried this tactic because I told him earlier, it might be a deal-breaker if we couldn’t begin to compromise on some of these harder issues. (I’ve been living with him for 9 years and married to him for the last 3 yrs/ Second marriage for both/ no kids/ both retired/ his house. I’ve resisted asking to make changes but the closer I get to the grave, the more I would like some of the creature comforts of life and we can afford them. Go figure.) Also, there is no earthly reason why we shouldn’t be able to compromise on level 10s. When I have NO say in the house, our relationship becomes strictly paternalistic… and that’s not what I signed-up for.
So, we talked about him asking for and receiving kudos for level 2’s when it was the level 10’s we can NEVER talk about.
He agreed …. ….. and then asked me what I knew about helping a person with OCPD compromise on issues that cause RED flags for them.(i.e. virtual stalemates).
After I got up from the floor, I told him I would research this. You can imagine, I was really happy he asked this!!! A very good start!!