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Old 26-06-2012, 10:28   #16
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

Nicely written blog post - always nice to read both sides!

My take is that she is simply taking the sailing lessons to keep you happy, some good might come of it - but I would not bet on it. How do you tell someone you care about that they actively dislike what the other finds is interesting / important? The answer is..........not easily!

I dunno how you feel about classical music - personally I find it duller than a dull thing on a very dull day. and whilst I might sit through a couple of concerts to keep a her happy, my heart would always sink at the prospect of several hours of dullness, no matter that it may involve a nice evening out (and maybe even some home comforts!).....and nothing will ever change that with me..........for others it is sailing (being cold, wet and occassionally scared ain't fun for everyone!), for everyone it is something......

You will probably have to settle for time afloat (with her) centred around sunny half days and picnicking - and for the sailing side to be kept for yourself or with freinds. But could be worse - you could be on your todd 24/7!
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Old 06-07-2012, 10:12   #17
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

How Helena's first sailing lesson went:

The Unlikely Boat Builder: Lesson 1

<sigh>
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Old 06-07-2012, 11:38   #18
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

The big thing is patience and slow experience. Experience will build confidence in the long run. My wife and I git married 7 years ago. When we dated she didnt even know how to swim. I have sailed for 40 years and crossed the pond twice as well as some offshore sailing in the Carribean, Obviously two diffent skill levels. She will never have the passion for sailing I do, but that isnt important, she wanted to be with me.

It was up to me to slowly let her gain her feet and sea legs as well as learn how to sail. It wasnt important if she knew all the right names. knew how to plot a course, understood sail trim...what was important is that she had fun, enjoyed it and participated at whatever level she could. The knowledge would come with repetitive experiences. It wasnt important that she reach my level, just that she kept moving forward. In addition I made sure we did the things she liked also. We joined a club where the were other wives and women sailors who she could relate to, tell stories to and learn from also,

First year we did only weekends in the Chesapeake and a 1 week trip where we stayed in marinas most of the time. The next year along with weekenbds anchoring out we went up the Chesapeake, down the Delaware River and stayed in Cape May for a week taking a few day sails out in the ocean. The following year we went up the coast 40 miles to Atlantic City. Then we were ready for a bigger step so we went to the LI Sound the next year. She was hooked. Seeing the Statue of Liberty come into view as we came in under the Verrezano Bridge. Visiting the quaint towns on the LI Sound like Northport, Greenport, Mystic, Block Island and then up to Newport. Here we are 7 years later and my wife is helping other new sailing women in our club. She loves spending the time on the water and being outside. She has handled 12-15 foot seas in the ocean and no longer fears, but respects it. She still hates burryin g the rail, so I do that with my friends. I am lucky as she is truly my partner in this adventure. The secret...patience...and doing things at her speed and comfort level and listening to find out what that is.

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Old 06-07-2012, 12:29   #19
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

My wife had little experience on boats. I told here one day, "no one wants to hire us young people these days, at least in a career like setting. Let's take a break, buy a boat and sail to New Zealand." Her response was, "Um, ok" I guess she thought it was one of my crazy ideas. WE have sailed one season of the two and our next big crossing is the Pacific.

How'd I do it. I went and bought a smaller boat that we could afford to have and not live on. If she liked it we could move forward, if not I had a thing to do on weekends. She liked it, but she was nervous and insecure on the boat. So lessons were in order. Lessons without me.

So we signed her up for lessons. Not on a big boat, but on a boat she could sail by herself. She went out and sailed a little boat, where she was the captain, and she got a really good feel for the wind and the dynamics of a sailboat. The next time she was on our boat she was a completely different person.

WE discussed this whole idea of getting your wife to go sailing and the solution is pretty simple. Do it together; work on the boat, work together to afford it and sail together as much as possible. Secondly She needs to be allowed to sail, and give you instructions. Within a few weeks I let Jennie park our old boat in our very tricky slip. I just stood there and held a bumper, doing my best to keep my mouth shut. She needed to be a part of the event, not just a body being yelled at when things go wrong. So be patient and let your wife try. One important rule we sail by is when the someone says "let's reef." we reef, no matter what the other person says. This is especially an issue during night passages.

We have crossed the Caribbean, experienced knockdowns, and have toughed out some pretty nasty squalls. At first she wanted a break before crossing the Pacific, so she went home for a month. We are two weeks into he sailing reprieve and all she wants to do is get back on the boat.

So if you want her to enjoy sailing, bribing or guilting her into it is not the solution, work together and let her be an equal partner in it and things should work out.
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Old 06-07-2012, 14:56   #20
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

I have given up trying to convince my wife to go sailing. Sometimes it's just best to leave it alone. I go off and sail with the friends, she shops. But I have a bigger problem. I bought a boat without her permission and it is hidden away at a friends dock undergoing a refit for a Xmas family surprise. NO ONE KNOWS, not even my sons.

Any suggestions on how to break the news?
RT
PS One good thing is it will be a great liveaboard if she kicks me out...
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Old 06-07-2012, 15:17   #21
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

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Originally Posted by vtcapo View Post
I have given up trying to convince my wife to go sailing. Sometimes it's just best to leave it alone. I go off and sail with the friends, she shops. But I have a bigger problem. I bought a boat without her permission and it is hidden away at a friends dock undergoing a refit for a Xmas family surprise. NO ONE KNOWS, not even my sons.

Any suggestions on how to break the news?
RT
PS One good thing is it will be a great liveaboard if she kicks me out...

Tell her up front then "duck and cover".
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Old 06-07-2012, 15:46   #22
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

Fortunately for me, my wife likes sailing. She certainly prefers a Cat though as she is not a big fan of heeling, although we did quite a bit our last trip and she dealt with it and is looking forward to our next trip.

There's a few things she's never really liked that I do.

1. snowmobiling
2. jet skiing
3. scuba diving

I'll start with the 3rd - she didn't like this because I was certified in 1992 and we went on a trip sometime in 2000 or something like that and she decided she'd go. She hated it. Admittedly it was a bad move the way it was done - hardly any instruction, just put on the gear and go. She said she'd never do it again. Summer of 2010 she got certified. What it took, was nearly 10 years and my not bugging her about it. It also involved a number of charter trips where we had friends that dove and did a lot of snorkeling.

Snowmobiling was a little different in that she didn't hate it, but wasn't that excited to go - she'd rather ski. After a few trips to Aspen, she realized she no longer liked skiing back East and now was happier snowmobiling and spending time with friends. Again, less pushing on my part and just doing it myself and/or with friends was the key.

Jetskiing is something she's still not a big fan of. I got her to go last Sunday on Cape Cod though and it was a little rough, so we just stayed in the harbor the whole time. Not my preference at all since 5mph is the limit, but we toured the boats in the harbor and she got used to handling the jetski. She played around and practiced docking at some of the floating docks and really improved her confidence.

So, my advice - listen to what your wife says. She's either interested in it or she's not. Pushing her seems like it's only going to make her less interested. I'd also suggest when you do get her back out under sail, focus on goign as fast as you can with minimal heeling

You can't make her like it, but you can clearly do things that will make her hate it. That's especially what you need to avoid.

And regarding lessons - it might be more effective to have her take lessons from a 3rd party. Sign her up for a group lesson or something. My wife and I are actually doing a lesson with 2 friends - it's far more basic than I need, but I know my friends need it and my wife will certainly benefit. I also think I'll get something out of it, although not nearly as much.
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Old 06-07-2012, 16:39   #23
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by vtcapo View Post
I have given up trying to convince my wife to go sailing. Sometimes it's just best to leave it alone. I go off and sail with the friends, she shops. But I have a bigger problem. I bought a boat without her permission and it is hidden away at a friends dock undergoing a refit for a Xmas family surprise. NO ONE KNOWS, not even my sons.

Any suggestions on how to break the news?
RT
PS One good thing is it will be a great liveaboard if she kicks me out...
I have a friend who bought a narrow boat in the UK with his business partner. Each wife thinks the other partner owns the boat. Apparently in the UK it's not polite for wives to talk about money, so the subject never comes up between the two wives. This has been going on for 10 years!

Don't think this scheme would work in the US.
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Old 06-07-2012, 18:17   #24
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

Not a chance. I'm in deep sh*t. This has to be handled just right. I have to find a way to get her on the boat.

Xmas party on a friends boat (our boat) with friends and family?... SURPRISE!!

F*ck me, I'm a gonna....
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Old 06-07-2012, 18:57   #25
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

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Not a chance. I'm in deep sh*t. This has to be handled just right. I have to find a way to get her on the boat.

Xmas party on a friends boat (our boat) with friends and family?... SURPRISE!!

F*ck me, I'm a gonna....
You are cracking me up big time.

Start another thread and keep us updated.

I love reading things others do that I can't even imagine.
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Old 06-07-2012, 19:12   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vtcapo
Not a chance. I'm in deep sh*t. This has to be handled just right. I have to find a way to get her on the boat.

Xmas party on a friends boat (our boat) with friends and family?... SURPRISE!!

F*ck me, I'm a gonna....
I have a buddy with 6 vintage dirt bikes he is "storing" for a friend - 8-10,000 dollar toys. It is amusing becuase the wife isn't an idiot but goes along with the charade. Maybe its due to the 3,000 pairs of shoes she got " on sale."

Actually my opinion is pretty simple. No one gets out alive and you can't take it with you. Spending 40 years in a cube and dying in front of the tube is such a waste of existence. Any partnership that doesn't strive to fulfill each partner's life goals, or bucket list is near sighted.

Only took me 20 years of marriage to figure that out...
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Old 06-07-2012, 21:52   #27
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

Chef2sail really confirms how I am dealing with my situation. I think his advice just fits my strategy perfectly. Thanks
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Old 07-07-2012, 08:54   #28
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

Setting aside political correctness, the fact is that in the majority of sailors I've met in the last 40 years conform to the fact that sailing is the man's desire and not the woman's. Of course there are always exceptions to the rule, but if we are honest, this is the reality. And, this basic conflict has been the result of unnumerable instances of "jumping ship" where the woman no longer can pretend that she is enjoying her time on the boat and bails. I have seen it from the frigid shores of Lake Michigan to the balmy Caribbean. In most cases, sailing is the man's dream, not the woman's and you can feel it every time you board one of those boats. There is always a subliminal tension that prevails with these couples and the occasional snippets of discontent that always work their way into the conversation. Perhaps things will change for the better in the future since many younger women today (under 50) have lived in a culture that sought to destroy stereotypes of what men and women are supposed to be and my general impression is that there is a greater percentage of women in that generation who actually enjoy sailing opposed to their more reluctant mothers and grandmothers. The truth is: sailing is a man's sport that features a few female soulmates who really share the passion and a majority of disgruntled females that could think of a thousand things they'd rather do than be on a boat.
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Old 07-07-2012, 09:13   #29
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

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Not a chance. I'm in deep sh*t. This has to be handled just right. I have to find a way to get her on the boat.

Xmas party on a friends boat (our boat) with friends and family?... SURPRISE!!

F*ck me, I'm a gonna....
I think your wife knows - I saw her yesterday buying a 12 gauge and scatter shot.

The way I see it your screwed..... get rid of the boat.... I'll start the bidding at $55
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Old 07-07-2012, 09:14   #30
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Re: No-Drama Sailing - Keeping the Spouse on the Boat

Two things I have found do not mix, sailing and gardening.
bruce, aka wizbang
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