Life on the Clock

28 Jan

Letterbalm Time for SexDear LetterBalm: My partner and I have been together three years and are raising three children from our previous marriages. We get along very well – we laugh and cry together and agree on the important stuff. Our kids are happier and more secure than they’ve ever been. Both of us feel the other is the best person we’ve ever known. But we have one big timing problem now. My partner recently began working for a software company based in Asia. It’s a great job – he works from home and the pay is excellent. But because of the time difference, he comes to bed when I’m almost ready to get up for my day job. He wants to have sex then, but I’m sound asleep. He gets angry, we have words and everybody in the house sulks. And, we’re finding it difficult to co-parent when we’re on opposite schedules. What can I do to restore harmony?

–Exhausted

Presumably, your partner is not teleconferencing in real time all night long with his colleagues. Sometimes he must be on the computer working solo. It seems to Ms. L.B.  that since he has more room to maneuver, it is up to him to approach his colleagues/bosses and see if his work schedule can be more flexible. Approach your partner and talk with him thusly:

Stan, I want to talk about a way we might resolve some of the recent tension in the house. You and I miss the intimacy and our private time together, the kids miss us. Your job is something you love, and it brings in good money. I’d never ask you to give it up. But the schedule is eating away at our lives. I have a couple of suggestions. Is it possible for you to talk with your colleagues to see if a work plan might be feasible? You might propose hours or days that you work alone and other hours or days designated to work with others. This will enable you to budget your time to allow for more work during daytime hours on your own. If we have the weekends and, say, two days a week when you have a schedule that matches mine, we can make things work. I know this will wreak havoc with your sleeping habits – and, we’ll all try to help. Can we talk about this and work up something together?  

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