Spouse Acceptance Factor is a powerful force in my house - Page 2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #16 of 42 (permalink) Old 09-30-2020, 12:39 PM
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This is a very tough topic for me. Spousal approval is something I long for. I recently set up my 29gal that had been sitting in the garage for years. It was a hard sell to my wife. What got it in was already having most of the gear I needed and not needing to spend much $. I just got a free 10gal from a friend and want to start a planted tank. When I walked in the house with the new tank my wife lost it. I think she feels less loved because I have hobbies and when my attention is elsewhere it is not on her. I have tried to get her interested in things that I am while not forcing it on her at the same time. She turns all of my passions into something negative and it makes them hard to enjoy.
I don't mean to be presumptuous, but I feel like there are more underlying issues here. And this is only a suggestion, counseling. It helped my relationship(s) and my wife and I are better because of it. In my honest opinion, hobbies should not affect neither you nor your spouse. Anyway again not trying to poke at you, just suggesting.


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post #17 of 42 (permalink) Old 09-30-2020, 01:36 PM
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This is a very tough topic for me. Spousal approval is something I long for. I recently set up my 29gal that had been sitting in the garage for years. It was a hard sell to my wife. What got it in was already having most of the gear I needed and not needing to spend much $. I just got a free 10gal from a friend and want to start a planted tank. When I walked in the house with the new tank my wife lost it. I think she feels less loved because I have hobbies and when my attention is elsewhere it is not on her. I have tried to get her interested in things that I am while not forcing it on her at the same time. She turns all of my passions into something negative and it makes them hard to enjoy.


I would step back an find out what her problem is. I wouldnt set up an aquarium. I have a couple of hobbies.
My wife has learned to know why I have them. She is involved with them an I share with her my plans and the why and where fore of why I am doing something. It has taken years to get to this point thou. I support her and she supports me. The issue is that your wife is not getting the support of her interests and feels bulldozed into an aquarium.
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post #18 of 42 (permalink) Old 09-30-2020, 01:50 PM
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I would step back an find out what her problem is. I wouldnt set up an aquarium. I have a couple of hobbies.
My wife has learned to know why I have them. She is involved with them an I share with her my plans and the why and where fore of why I am doing something. It has taken years to get to this point thou. I support her and she supports me. The issue is that your wife is not getting the support of her interests and feels bulldozed into an aquarium.
Great points @EdWiser . Also @jburr2468 , did you mention the new tank to her beforehand? I find that with my wife, I like to tell her way in advance so that she's not blindsided. I also talk to her about my plans and try to get her input on my ideas and take her ideas into account as well. For instance, I originally planned to put my tanks side by side. My wife said it will look like there's too much going on that side of the room. I stepped back and thought about it. And you know what I agreed with her 100%. I didn't see it because I was too enthusiastic about setting up a new tank. I also ask her what kind of fish she would like to see in the tank and try to compromise with that as well. My home isn't just mine. It's her home, my kids home, my dogs home etc.

One day I was working on my new tank, by sifting soil outside on our deck. I always tell her where I will be and for about how long. You know what? She decided to help me sift out some dirt without me asking her. Anyway, I agree with @EdWiser definitely take a step or two back, try to find out what the issues are.
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post #19 of 42 (permalink) Old 09-30-2020, 04:00 PM
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I'm recently married and we upgraded and moved into my wife's house. I was supposed to get rid of my 20G long and give my endlers back to the local LFS (my choice), but then COVID hit and the LFS was closed. In the intervening time she encouraged me to setup a new tank as she enjoys it as well. So we have a new 50G, first aquascape ever, and have been moving my endlers there. The only thing she insisted on were some "cute" marimo balls despite them being somewhat cliche (like buying mouse ears when you go to Disney World). But the shrimp and fish like them. I do hide cost of purchases as she is much more frugal than I.
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post #20 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-01-2020, 03:18 PM
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Reading the comments here definitely reassures me how great my wife is. I wouldn't say she "supports" my expensive hobbies, but she certainly doesn't discourage them. I believe if you are "mostly" transparent with the costs, your spouse should have no issue with you doing something that makes you happy.
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post #21 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-01-2020, 04:44 PM
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I agree, the your spouse should know.
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post #22 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-01-2020, 06:26 PM
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I really thought my wife wasnt into my tank at all; that she just tolerated it. She would poke fun for the time I spent, when I got frustrated, the money I spent, etc etc etc

Were in the very last stages of remodeling our entire home, and the very last thing to get done is the entryway. She surprised me about 2 months ago with an architectural interpretation of our entryway with my 125G tank built into the wall, right in the center for everyone to see (shes an architect by trade, and designs new homes and additions for a living). I almost fell out of my chair when she said that I could put the tank right in the middle of the wall in the foyer!

Most of the construction is done at this point. I have the week of 10/19 off to do the tank move. Its going to be stressful and exciting at the same time.

The biggest stress is that the tank is literally going to be the first thing you see when you open the door. Im going to be an absolute panic if I get some horrible algae outbreak lol.

If you ever think you're too small to make a difference, spend a couple of nights sleeping with a mosquito.

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post #23 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-01-2020, 06:27 PM
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Im going to be an absolute panic if I get some horrible algae outbreak lol.
The pressure is on!
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post #24 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-01-2020, 06:53 PM
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My hubby is an enabler ! I currently have 4 aquariums, with a new Fluval Flex 32.5 gallon arriving in a couple weeks. We both consider my aquariums to be living pieces of furniture, so each one is strategically placed and aquascaped, according to overall room design. Both of us have a healthy dose of OCD, so that plays a big part in the decision making !
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post #25 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-01-2020, 06:53 PM
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I tend to reduce the actual price I paid. Ÿ[censored]
The only money I ever spend on aquarium supplies is the incredible amount of money she saves us by buying all her shoes at those too good to pass up sales!!!

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post #26 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-01-2020, 07:03 PM
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I really would like to turn the garage into a fish-room. Breeding tanks on racks-- etc...
Imagine how my husband would take that conversation... not good.

Its nice that some have really accommodating spouses. My situation is more contentious. Every tank requires a lot of negotiation. But, then again, I tend to think I may be excessive and unreasonable in my requests. I have a 180, 60 gallon, 2- 30 gallons, a 5.4 gallon, a 9 gallon, a 10 gallon a 7.5 gallon and a 5 gallon in 3 rooms of the house: kitchen, dining room, and living room.

But, he likes his tech stuff: wires, cables, smart-home everything. I cannot turn anything on in the house by flipping a switch and I forget if I need to ask Siri or Alexa to turn on a light.
Its part of bringing 2 people together that have differing interests and hobbies. If you want to satisfy your own hobbies, you need to accept that Suri or Alexa, or Hue lights that turn every color but "normal" is part of the deal.


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post #27 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-02-2020, 03:45 AM
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When you don't have a spouse, but COVID's stuck you with your parents. Who have a very low Parent Approval Factor...thankfully jobs are opening back up again so into relative freedom soon!

Granted, any spouse I have is going to have to deal with the fish tanks. And hopefully help me clean all 500 I eventually add into the theoretical house we get...In return I'll promise to keep the live food cultures restricted to one room of the house as well as just have a small chest freezer to keep all the weird frozen foods away from the main fridge....
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So many fish/plants/inverts to keep, not enough aquaria.
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post #28 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-04-2020, 04:03 PM
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Granted, any spouse I have is going to have to deal with the fish tanks. And hopefully help me clean all 500 I eventually add into the theoretical house we get...In return I'll promise to keep the live food cultures restricted to one room of the house as well as just have a small chest freezer to keep all the weird frozen foods away from the main fridge....
Good luck with all of that!

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Its part of bringing 2 people together that have differing interests and hobbies. If you want to satisfy your own hobbies, you need to accept that Suri or Alexa, or Hue lights that turn every color but "normal" is part of the deal.
That made me laugh!
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post #29 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-04-2020, 08:44 PM
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@jburr2468 I was going to say something about therapy, but @Econde said it better, so I'll just second that. BTW, you can go to a therapist by yourself; you don't need to convince her or ask her permission.

____________

I'm inclined to say "your money, your choice" when it comes to hobbies, but some hobbies take more than money. Things like golf and fishing take massive amounts of time, playing an instrument produces (sometimes awful) noise, soapmaking and soldering put smells in the air, etc. Aquariums hit a bunch of those sore spots. Much as I love fish and the idea of breeding, I don't think I could handle the noise of a fish room. Substrates, fish food, medications, and even algae can develop a bad smell. If you're sharing living space with someone else, it's not just square footage that matters - you're sharing things like air and free time as well. Not to mention the eyesore factor - most decor schemes aren't built with aquariums in mind. People have a right to feel comfortable in their home, and that means compromise and prior discussion.
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Last edited by Fishly; 10-04-2020 at 09:10 PM. Reason: extra info
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post #30 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-04-2020, 11:06 PM
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What worked for me was talking to my wife about hobbies I would like to get into after I had already bough a tank, filter, co2 system, etc etc that was "hiding" in the trunk of my car. I talked about the cost of building another race car like I had back when we first met or maybe just classic car restorations, I talked about getting into drones, I talked about trapshooting....maybe we could start golfing.

With every idea we were searching associated costs and she kept rolling her eyes....in the end I looked away and mumbled "maybe I should get another fish tank and save the extra money for a trip or something"

I'm on my 6th tank and since a trip to Jamaica is not an option with covid and all I am trying to figure out where to fit tank #7 LOL
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