Thursday, August 14, 2008

Hoist by my own petard

I tend to hold certain information close to my chest. Big things that are happening in my life. (This is SUCH an introvert characteristic.)

For example, when i was pregnant, i didn't tell anyone for as long as possible. (Well, The Mister knew, but only because he was there when i got pregnant. Plus the puking was hard to hide.)


When i was growing up, information was the currency of control and ridicule, so i learned to keep things hidden. Having a stray exuberant thought thrown back in your face is no fun. ("Remember when you were 11 and you decided you were going to write a weekly newsletter about our block? Remember how you only wrote one issue? I knew it wouldn't last.")

Sometimes withholding information becomes a form of punishment, a way of distancing myself from those from whom i am withholding. ("I'll show you! I'll never tell you ANYTHING, ever again!")

It appears that i am still stomping around in high dudgeon 39 years later.

The Mister and i will be making a huge change in our lives in about 8 months. (We will be moving.)

I have yet to tell my family.

When i think of having to answer questions from them about it for the next 8 months (or maybe longer, who knows) i feel tired.


The problem with this approach is that then it becomes awkward when you do tell.

"When did you decide to do that?"

"Oh, um, hmm, ah, sometime last year." (Not mentioning that it was in February last year.)

*awkward silence.*

Maybe i should just call them up after the fact and casually mention that i have a new address.

Yep, that'll work.

44 comments:

fiwa said...

That's why I moved away from my family. Thousands and thousands of miles away. :)

Seriously, after the "advice" I received about my recent car troubles, I understand exactly what you mean. Maybe you could just wait till closer to the time and then say you'd been thinking about it for awhile, and have JUST come to a decision?

Regarding your question - I'm going to send you an email. I think it's too much info for here.

flutter said...

petard is my favorite word, ever.

Brad said...

I like to keep most folks (read: family) on a 'need to know' basis. You need to know when I need you to know. Selfish? yes. But it adds to the sanity in my life.

thailandchani said...

I would definitely keep that information close. The questions would get annoying for the next eight months. Is it really going to impact them in any way?

Fiwa's idea is good.


~*

Stucco said...

I'm inferring that you'll be leaving town?

Ortizzle said...

WHERE, woman?!! Across the street? Across town? Across the country? Somewhere over the rainbow?

Sheeesh! Don't leave us in suspense!

meno said...

fiwa, then i have to remember that lie when i talk about the process. That's why i am hoist.

flutter, i know, it's a good one.

brad, i like your interpretation of "need to know basis."

chani, only in that it will hurt their feelings that i didn't tell.

stucco, nope, you won't be rid of me that easily.

ortizzle, across town, but it's a big lifestyle change.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Yes, definitely go with that. Move when you're ready and send your new contact information to everyone.

If they can't celebrate with you, they don't deserve to know your plans.

But tell US everything, ok? :)

Princess in Galoshes said...

Eh, if it's only across town, then they can suck it if they don't like it. You're a grown-up (!) you can do what you want when you want. And share that information with whomever you want.

SUEB0B said...

I do the same type of thing. I figure it is their own fault for making things so HARD and my mom always trying to find the dark cloud above every silver lining. A lot of things I just don't want to have to answer because it pisses me off.

The Real Mother Hen said...

Hey you aren't going to India are you?

If you move to OR, on the east side of the Cascade, I'll certainly help you on the moving and settling in part.

crazymumma said...

smooth.

You are so smooth.

I say just do it. Rip the bandaid.

Sally Forth said...

Send change of address cards after you move then go to Fiji for two weeks.

Gordo said...

Meno, you're not old enough to move into a home. Think this through! ;-)

Maggie said...

and don't forget the penchant for handing you things like defunct lawn chairs and cases of horrible wine. You really don't need to be packing extra things, or worrying about getting rid of them before you move.

I liked the idea of telling them closer to the move but making it sound like it was a more recent decision.

furiousBall said...

petard is to the english language as Bowser was to ShaNaNa

ms chica said...

Geez, we have a lot in common.

The first time my Mister and I moved without telling anyone. We kept the same landline, so no one was suspicious. After we were settled, I mailed out elaborate change of address cards to my family.

Conveniently, they received the cards when we were out of town for a long weekend. Everyone was able to profess their shock to our answering machine.

meno said...

hearts, of course i will!

princess, they'll just be hurt because i didn't let them share the excitement.

suebob, the dark in the silver lining! I like that. Very appropriate.

mother hen, oh hell no. Well, not that i know of. I love Oregon.

crazymumma, that would be quick and painful, and then the pain would continue....

sally, excellent idea.

gordo, but they said someone else would do the cooking???!!!

maggie, you get it exactly.

furious, no, i think it's more like Shaggy is to Scooby.

ms. chica, you are a clever, clever woman.

QT said...

I'm with maggie on this. Serious.

liv said...

yeah, you really are like Chica. I have to say that I told her that I thought it was a little bit untoward to just spring it on the family at the last minute, but some of yous gotta do what you're gwine do. you dig?

my feelings would have been hurt if you didn't tell me. fwiw

sari said...

Too bad you're not moving to Arizona!

You remind me of me, not telling anyone I was having a baby until, oh, the day before I went to the hospital!

ha ha

Good luck! I can't wait to hear all about it (some day).

Tink said...

I always try to withhold information and end up cracking sooner than I'd like. Hoop can't withold anything. He once told me a secret in front of the person whose secret it was. So... Where you moving?

jen said...

change is good!

Robin said...

february?!!! you've known ABOUT this since FEBRUARY and you're just now telling us??? i mean, i know you mentioned "something" awhile back, but you NEVER said....

just kidding. they'll get over it and if they don't, send 'em some sand to pound.

meno said...

qt, that's because she's a smart woman.

liv, good thing i told you! :)

sari, ugh, it's hot enough here right now to FEEL like Arizona!

tink, i never crack. I am no nut. :)

jen, yes it is. Although i am not making anything like the change you are.

robin, Mom? Mom, is that you?

Dick said...

Just say that you are downsizing. Or upsizing, whatever it is. Let them figure it out. Then send your new address with your Christmas cards. Do remember to send Em a key.

TTQ said...

Wow what a flashback. I told the neighbors my parents were getting a divorce when I was in the second grade... My mom was all kinds of pissed off. I sonet the next 11 years trying to figure out what I can and can't share with people.

Mrs4444 said...

I feel like I'm missing something; what's the big deal about moving across town? I'm also intrigued about why they even need to be informed (other than the address thing). If we were moving across town, no one in my family would care (except that we'd expect them to help move). I respect that it's a big deal, but I have no frame of reference for that. Interesting.

hockamama said...

you know, they have really cute little cards that say something along the lines of 'we've moved, this is our new address'. or you could always tell them that your old house was full of mold, or something like that...'gee, I sure hope you don't have any mold in your lungs from the last time you were over...'

being a slacker, I didn't take the time to read the other comments, so I hope I didn't just repeat someone else's sentiments.

Rosie said...

aw just tell them afterwards... a nice little address card...

luckyzmom said...

"When I was growing up, information was the currency of control and ridicule, so i learned to keep things hidden." This explains a lot to me about why my husband withholds from me. But, I share everything, so I'm not much help. Goodluck.

Anette said...

I recognize this way of doing it! It can, as you say sometimes end up in awkward situations. On the other hand somtimes I think: thank God I didn't tell anybody that, cause it came straight back into my face! I don't use what I keep to ridicule anyone though..

Nancy Dancehall said...

Why tell them at all?

Think of the holidays. You can set up a hidden cam at the old place to catch the expressions. I smell a YouTube winner!

Nancy Dancehall said...

And then years later...

"Remember that time when I didn't tell you I moved, and you came over to my house for Thanksgiving, and you were so confused? Ha Ha!"

meno said...

dick, it wouldn't be so weird except they are doing something quite similar, except they are moving into a retirement place.

ttq, i don't know how they could expect you to know what to tell or not in the second grade. You poor thing.

mrs 4444, part of the issue is that it's NOT a big deal. But they will act as if is is.

holly, be assured that NO ONE else made that comment. :)

rosie, maybe the week before....

luckyzmom, i'm glad i can help you understand your man. We're weird.

anette, it's nice to know someone else understands.

nancy, you are EVIL. I like that in a person.

Gina said...

I do the same thing with my mother. Even with stupid, insignificant information, I find myself keeping it a secret. It's just easier that way.

Mona Buonanotte said...

In my family we don't usually tell Important Informative Things until the day before...or the day after...they occur. Like my dad calling out of the blue with a story about his (planned) surgery the day before. It's better for the worry quotient, maybe, to not have months and months to fret. My family is fretful by nature. You should wait.

coffespaz said...

I love that idea!! I do the same thing to my parents. One, I simply don't tell anything...not anything of consequence. The other, I tell only when I am ready, which is usually long after there is any consequence so the endless questioning and prying doesn't really matter anymore.

Vanessa said...

I've done that, "oh hey, here's my new address" thing. FYI, it didn't go over so well. My family does the information is priceless currency too. I hate it, talk about communication breakdown over small simple stuff. It makes me crazy and I try to have as little to do with them as possible.

Imez said...

"Remember when you were 11..."

Ouch. No wonder your daughter is all the family you ever really talk about.

We've got even more in common now.

(Proud to be #40!)

Diane Mandy said...

Meno, you are so so funny! But I can appreciate why you've gotten in the habit of holding things close to your chest for many of the same reasons you write about. My worst example? I didn't tell me parents I had gotten divorced a year earlier and only told them a month before they met my future husband. Bad, huh? yet somehow, I got away with it.

meno said...

gina, it is easier. and much less annoying.

mona, fretful. What an excellent word to dscribe it.

coffespaz, you have captured it exactly, ensless questioning and prying.

vanessa, isn't that weird? Why do they feel that every bit of information is subject to judgment??

imez, i'm proud that you are #40 too. Yeah, i talk about my parents, but it ain't pretty.

diane, that is the best story ever. A whole year? You are awesome!

meno said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mother of Invention said...

Hey, they may take it better than you think, especially if it's only across town. It won't affect the possibility of seeing them and if it doesn't directly affect or change their daily lives, it may be easier..hopefully. Happy packing!

Hope you and Em are okay too being so apart for a long time. Will she come home on Thanksgiving but not before?