Today is D-Day (earlier than expected). My department chair is in meetings with the dean, and my class will either get a stay of execution, or will be cancelled. I will keep you posted.
As you already know, I think the Desire Discrepancy Spreadsheet is awesome.
It introduces the concept of desire discrepancy to the world with some serious dramatic flair, and it’s a brilliant illustration of the types of concrete examples that can be helpful when communicating an issue to a partner.
That being said, the dude who built this spreadsheet wasted the data he collected with his less than stellar delivery.
Here’s one way I think that dude could’ve used the data in the DDS to get his lady to blow him (instead of just blowing him off).
He could’ve refined data down into palatable chunks, and figured out how to better understand, and possibly overcome, each ‘chunk’ one at a time.
Even if dude had mature delivery, dumping the whole data set on his wife all at once would be overwhelming. When it comes to behavior change, people often need to be eased into things gently.
I speak from experience. I’m messy by nature. Not tornado-hit-my-house messy, but more like I-will-step-over-a-pile-of-dirty-clothes-for-two-weeks-before-picking-it-up messy.
My partner? Not messy. And if he compiled a “Messy Becca Spreadsheet” and showed me each and every time I was messy? Chances are I would do nothing but be pissed and get hella defensive.
But my partner is smart. He chunks his critiques, and hits me with them one at time. First it was the hair on the floor in the bathroom, then it was the gross wadded up towel full of coffee grounds on the counter. (The very long list could go on.)
Once I successfully pick up the cleanliness ritual (or it is a horrible failure and he knows there is no hope), he moves on the next one.
With the data compiled, dude’s wife had patterns enough for him to sufficiently break them down into palatable, tackle-able chunks.
For example, she rejects him quite a bit on the premise that she’s feeling gross.
Here are three possible ways he can tackle that chunk (or any other chunk he identifies):
1) Tell her how the rejection makes him feel using “I statements” (which, btw is something we practice in my CCSF class).
A-la “Hey lover-face. I notice that sometimes when I want to have sex, you tell me that you’re gross and you need to shower. Which I totally get. But sometimes, you don’t shower. This is confusing for me, and makes me feel like you’re not being totally honest.”
2) Suggest ways that she can un-gross herself, or ways he can help her un-gross herself.
A-la “Hey lover-face. I notice that sometimes when I want to have sex, you tell me that you’re gross and you need to shower. Maybe the next time that happens, I can help you get the grime out by running you a bath, washing your hair, and lathering you up!”
3) Learn from the pattern.
If she really doesn’t like starting sex when she's sweaty and grimy, maybe he should learn from the pattern and not initiate right after she comes back from the gym.
(As difficult as pheromones may make that task -- as they will be alllllll up in her gym sweat -- he could still learn. [Don’t know about the role of pheromones in arousal? You’ll learn about that in the Male and Female Physiology section of my CCSF class.])
Speaking of learning from the pattern, I have one more thing to say about how we could’ve better used the spreadsheet.
Tune in tomorrow to find out the one thing he could’ve done to improve his chances of success, and decrease all those rejections.