It’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing today. After the jump, we hear from “No Joking,” a woman who hated her boyfriend’s jokes. “He does a variety of bad puns and forced jokes, usually sexual, and usually during serious/romantic talks.” She wrote. “I’m in this for the long haul so I can’t just break up because I don’t like his jokes. But I’m not sure where we can find middle ground in this issue.” Keep reading to see whether they’ve managed to find middle ground since the letter was published.
So in conclusion, what I had been aiming for was a better way of handling what I thought of as an annoyance. Ever since I wrote my letter and talked to him, he has cut back all sexual jokes and drops only a few jokes here and there. Which means, unfortunately, I won’t be following most readers’ advice of breaking up because things have gotten much better. Sure, I might not always like his jokes, even if they are non-sexual, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love other great parts of him.
What I greatly appreciated was that some of the comments here really made me think about what I value in him and why I don’t want to break up (since that’s what most people suggested and I considered it seriously too). A simple reason would be because in all fairness, he is the best husband material among all men I dated or know well. But more importantly, I think it’s all about learning to accept someone for who he is. Of course, asking him to make slight adjustments here and there is necessary, but dumping him just because I don’t like something doesn’t feel right to me — if I kept on doing that, I’d be single forever. I didn’t realize this until someone’s comment asked me, “Why would he be in a relationship with someone around whom he’s going to have to censor himself?” I think that pretty much nailed my deepest worry — that it’s unfair for him and I’m being too harsh. He deserves better and I need to treat him better, especially since he has willingly accepted my flaws without complaining or threatening to break up. This I will need to keep reminding myself, but it works miracles whenever I do because gratefulness always wins over resentment.
So thank you, Wendy, and everyone; you guys are amazing.
Well, if it works for you guys, then great. (I’d just be careful about making your boyfriend feel like he’s never “allowed” to be funny or make a silly pun here or there. It seems like humoring him from time to time would be preferable over him censoring himself all the time and losing a part of what makes him who he is. There’s a fine line between eliminating offensive jokes and stopping all jokes completely.). Anyway, thanks for the update and best of luck to you!
If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.