How do you feel about him having told a co-worker about your plans ? Jot it down on a blank A4 piece of paper in about 20 pointers … yes, 1, 2, 3, until 20. Without ANY restraint.
Before you do however, on a A4, just write anything that comes to your mind like, hello, it’s a lovely day, the burgers are good there, i like dogs, what a nice dress, and so on. In doing so, you are clearing out your mind. Then put this sheet aside. Remember that that doesn’t have to be any structure nor collaboration between one line and the next. You might even fold this sheet in two. You could even tear it up calmly and pile the torn pieces on your desk – in preparation for the task you are giving yourself.
If you can, sit calmly and meditate a while.
imagine your partner comes in.
How would you greet him ? I would behave as if it were a normal evening and that the dinner is going to turn up on the table or you may even suggest picking something up outside.
In the course of the evening, you could find solace in bringing up the topic in a calm way, such as something’s come to my attention and I would like to talk with you about it. IN THIS ATMOSPHERE, there is a liklihood that he will say ‘Sure’.
“Do you remember ….
Well, I’ve learnt that ‘so&so’ had got wiff of the post and was encouraged to apply for it.
Apparently, you were the one who had tipped him off about it.”
Give him a chance to respond to your words. **
“I understand that you like Jack/John/Penny. Here’s the thing, I had told you about the job in a moment of confidence, private sharing even and I FEEL ………. that you should have given my secret away.”
Say what you feel : sad, upset, disgusted, frustrated, crushed/perplexed, disheartened, embarrassed, lost/angry, annoyed, resentful, furious, fed up, agitated/…………….. Yes the emotion but without overdramatising it with heavy duty words or a raised voice or glaring eyes.
I would listen to his answer. I would not push him to reply. Let him take all the time he wants and needs to find his words. This can be achieved by breathing all the while expressing yourself and keeping eye contact. ***
Now tell him the consequence of this FEELING and how it has affected you.
“I feel betrayed, I feel controlled, I feel subdued, I feel domineered, I feel disrespected, I feel surprised, …….. once more drama-free.
** Do not let him get away with brushing you off, nor claiming that you are being too sensitive. THAT IS GASLIGHTING.
*** It is important that you remain on this incident and not relate to any other. This is the one which you are talking about.
Whatever you do, do not cry. Stand your ground. You are a woman, a human being, worthy of respect and knowing that the person you are living with (for 4 years) has your back.
I would not even refer to the occasions when he had yours. You are going in for a WIN on this incident. So stay on your guard being your own best friend, supporting yourself in your quest for equal respect.
Finally, ease the conversation around to coming to an agreement.
In situations like this, don’t you agree that what we exchange in private especially in a situation of an opportunity to work, mifht well remain within the 4 walls of our home ? It would make me very happy to know that I can count on you. Let me go in there and fight my own battles. I just need to know that I have your support. It is very important to me.
Yes, he was sneaky. If you would like to be sure that this does not blow up in emotion, practice your stand, with patience, cry before (I would) and address the matter in a matter of fact way which gets it off your mind.
I would not let it pass.
The question is, when do you pick this up with him ? Certainly not when you are nervously awaiting the response to the interview or still under the heavy emotion of what he has done. Let time pass. Bring it up when you are on a vacation together. Off for the weekend at friends’. After a walk.
But do it.
If you do not, it will eat at you and your health will begin to decline. This is a serious matter of BOUNDARIES. He has not respected yours.
The longer you allow yourself to mull over how to say it and let the time pass, without allowing it to eat at you, (BREATHE), the better you will become at ‘fighting’ for yourself and before he knows it, you will have grown from being the partner he thought he could take for granted and control to becoming the full fledged woman you will slowly see emerge.
Do it Sister !
We are not born women. We become women. This is the nonviolent communication taught by Marshall Rosenberg. It takes time to put it into place with a partner. Sometimes it is a good idea to take leave of the situation and go off for a few days, go back home to Mum or read a good book. Who knows, when you get good at it, you may perfect your negotiation skills to getting him to pick up after himself a little at home. But one thing at a time. That is another problem. Count for yourself first. Breathe. Good Luck.