In my last post, in amongst the ‘being cute’ thing, bambi suggested I should write about “overcomplicating things like ‘I like touching’ and communications”. It was a good suggestion.
I am learning how bambi communicates, and vice versa of course.
I have joked that we each need translators. I’m only half kidding.
I tend to speak carelessly and broadly. I often just want the concept, the *feeling* of a thing.
Bambi tends to speak carefully and precisely. He examines things minutely and picks them apart in a desire to be accurate.
Recently, I asked him, “How do you like to express affection?”
He wanted to know what I meant by ‘affection’ first, and then he answered with specifics and examples, carve outs and conditions.
Specifically about touching, what he said went something like this (totally paraphrased for point-making):
“I like touching, but only if I’m not busy with something else, or if we aren’t carrying things. And sometimes it’s a bit awkward, so I don’t like it much then either because it’s uncomfortable, and not so much around people, like at dinner or something, because that’s rude. But you know, I like it at home.”
What I heard was “I WILL TOUCH YOU, AT HOME, WHEN IT’S CONVENIENT AND PRACTICAL.”
There was no sweetness, no flirty loveliness, no ‘oh my yes please’, no ‘lots of petting!’ in it. I found it really sad because touching is huge for me. Even if he is not touching me I want to feel his *desire* to touch me, I want it to be palpable.
So I dug around a bit and we talked about it, and the upshot was that what he *meant* was “I like touching”, but then his mind ran on to all sorts of exceptions, so he shared them in an attempt to be more accurate, to give me more information so that I could know him better. And this completely destroyed the intent of the message. He tends to overcomplicate meaning with too many words and ifs and buts and maybes.
It’s like me saying, “I like chocolate, but not if I’m on a diet, and not the cheap kind, and if it’s really hot it gets kind of messy, and I don’t like really dark chocolate so much, or ones with fake fruit fillings…”
I think my translator should only take the first three words of anything he ever says and then the rest of his words should be transmogrified into some repetitive version of “… and you are awesome!”
Joking aside, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that it worried me. It does. We talk about these things when they come up, and each time it turns out that we were just not communicating so well in the first instance. We will learn of course, how to speak to and hear each other, but if the gap is too big and our communication is hampered by this sort of misunderstanding over and over, it’s obviously going to become a problem.
Of course if he was actually petting and stroking me while he was talking about when he doesn’t like touching, I could just say “Sure, bambi, if you say so…” and I would know that he’s just, well… talking.
You just need a *shush* button. For me, *shush* is one of the most powerful words in a dominant’s vocabulary. (Shush, I’m not finished talking; shush, let’s go to bed now; shush, I already know how you feel about that) To be freed from over thinking things is a wonderful gift. For someone who talks too much and over thinks everything, *shush* may be the most important word in our relationship, but I may be overthinking this.
I think it’s just hardER to shush someone when you’re primarily communicating via IM or emails. It’s not easy to interrupt thoughts when a fully completed one hits you in it’s full, unedited glory!
I’m sure face-to-face communications won’t have this problem.
“It’s not easy to interrupt thoughts when a fully completed one hits you in it’s full, unedited glory!”
*laugh* True! By the time it reaches me in that state, I’m already sad!
I’m sure face-to-face communications won’t have this problem.
I suspect you are right. My “what the fuck sort of a hole are you digging right now?!” face is hard to mistake…
@Litterarius: *smile* Yes, I can well imagine saying “shush” or “enough now” when we are together if I am sure that I have understood his intent and more information is not going to be productive.
Doing it when I am getting to know him is not really useful because I need to give him the space to be how he is and I need to get to know him well enough to really understand how he works. THEN I will get to a point where I will know when in a conversation it’s safe to ‘shush’ him without him feeling like I am just not interested in what he has to say.
“I have joked that we each need translators. I’m only half kidding.”
Hahaha.. I can so relate! Even now, three years later. The translators are mostly built in… but sometimes they get turned off.
Just hate it when it happens to ruin a “hot” moment.
I’m glad it’s not just me!!
And I guess we all build those translators, it’s just that some are tiny little ones with only a few words/phrases/expressions in them. And some are honking great big machines that require an entire room and a team of experts to run it.
I agree that in-person communications should probably flow more easily as the exchange of comments, corrections, and questions is faster.
Now that you and Bambi know you tend to want broad, big-picture answers to some questions, has text-based communication improved so that he knows when you want an “in general” answer and when you want more specific and detailed ones?
By the way, d’aww. You and Bambi are adorable together! :)
“I agree that in-person communications should probably flow more easily as the exchange of comments, corrections, and questions is faster.”
*nod nod* Body language is sooo important, and immediate face-to-face interactions are very different from remote.
“Now that you and Bambi know you tend to want broad, big-picture answers to some questions, has text-based communication improved so that he knows when you want an “in general” answer and when you want more specific and detailed ones?”
This is recent and we are still feeling each other out, so not really. I don’t want to stifle how he expresses himself *even if it leads to misunderstanding* because I’m aware that that might make him self conscious and may make him shut down some. At the moment, I am okay with probing around a bit if something concerns me, and getting a better idea of his meaning by doing that.
He’s a smart boy, though, and I expect he will think about how things come across and will play with how to tweak it some to still say what he wants, but also avoid misunderstandings.
“By the way, d’aww. You and Bambi are adorable together! :)”
*laugh* Thanks! And I have just seen that he has started using *an adorable avi* in the comments here!! Cuteness!
Bambi sounds a bit like Sheldon from the BBT. And I must a admit, a but like myself as well. Sometimes people ask you stuff and you think:
Yes! But not in that case and that is also.. nah, and well. Yes, like that.
Shush now… *chuckle*
Allow me to interpretate.
1) I like touching.
2) Not in public (where I feel awkward).
3) I like touching in private (where I feel much more relaxed).
*chuckles* “Interpretate,” nice!
I like touching always! Remember that the example used above weren’t my actual words, but just a point-making paragraph.
*laugh* Perfect! And that avi is adorable!
@Satan: I think you meant “3) I like touching privates”. Well, I mean, WHO DOESN’T??!
This sounds like one of those rational brain vs. emo brain things. Is it?
Like, you can hear and understand the words he’s saying rational, but emo brain hears something *completely* different?
Or I’m just projecting… because that’s what I do. *sigh*
I know what you mean and I’m sure I do that sometimes, but not in this case (I asked him what he thought of this post, and he agreed it was fair, so it’s not a disconnect in that way).
It’s kind of like someone saying “I love you, but gee it annoys me when you make that clicking noise with your teeth”. The intent in the message (“I love you”) is lost because of the extra information (“that thing annoys me”).
Yep, I totally think that’s it – extraneous information. So right now it feels like a bit of a guessing game at how deep do you want to go.
Sometimes if you were to ask “how do you feel about affection?” I could launch into long explanations about my parents, how they treated me, how that formed my first impressions of women, how that informed my first relationships, how those were wrong, and how I got to where I am now.
Sometimes you just want to hear “I like touches!”
I’m convinced (even still!) that you want to hear both sides of that; you want all that data, to truly understand. And that’s why you’re so swoon-making.
I just have trouble sometimes telling when you want the long vs. short answer. :) Time will help sort that out, I’m sure.
I DO want to hear both sides, all sides (“swoon-making”… *smile* sweet!).
I’m only concerned when the underlying message gets lost or confused as more and more information gets added, so it’s *clarity* that I’m interested in.
And yes, time will help sort it out, as will being face to face where immediate reactions will easily guide how the conversation goes. I am practising my ‘WTF?!’ face as we speak *smile*.
Good Lord you people are all blathering about touching and shushing and missing the vital bit out “It’s like me saying, “I like chocolate, but not if I’m on a diet, and not the cheap kind, and if it’s really hot it gets kind of messy, and I don’t like really dark chocolate so much, or ones with fake fruit fillings…” ”
You go straight to your room young Ferns! One never EVER merely likes chocolate…. One adores chocolate, one worships chocolate and so forth….
Honestly kids these days, I don’t know, in my day etc etc etc
P.S. I’m sure it’ll be fine in person once you’ve beaten some sense into him apparently a broom handle on the head really hurts errr so I was told by ummm somebody ummm once I think >.> <.<
Touch the chocolate he says, but not the white chocolate… hahaha.
*laugh* I’m surprised this totally valid point about chocolate was not raised earlier and with more aggro before now…
I shall be over there, hanging my head in shame over my blatant and unforgivable disrespect for chocolate.
… and I like touching myself
– but not when I’m busy (I could crash my car.)
– or we’re carrying something (like moving a sofa downstairs and I’ve got the lower end)
– or when there are people around (especially the police)
– or we’re out having dinner (It off menu)
… and so forth… You’re so insightful. Thank you, Frens. How we talk usually tips off how we act – as you imply – diving or toe-in-the-water. What you see is what you get. I tend to get jokey.
“… and I like touching myself”
I think that touching oneself while carrying a sofa in front of the police while eating dinner is a feat worth trying at least once.
Do let us know when it’s up on Youtube please…