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Boyfriends who fail at empathy

I can’t decide if I’m being silly or not. I was just talking on the phone to my boyfriend, and describing how I’ve been having writer’s block and feeling pretty anxious about writing my personal statements and stuff for grad school apps. He isn’t college educated, so I understand the process is foreign to him. I haven’t really been keeping him in the loop about what it requires and how its affecting me (he also hasn’t asked, other than to ask if its been going productively). So, I communicated that it’s been difficult and hard, and what I’m trying to capture in my essays.

And the totality of his response: “Huh.” a second of silence. “Are you sleepy yet?” He yawns dramatically and gets off the phone after a little while.

I feel annoyed. Like...totally blown over and unacknowledged. I think perhaps I’m more embittered than I should be, because I spent a portion of my morning reading about emotional labor. And boy, am I a pro! I respond and listen well to him, and read between the lines, and acknowledge whatever sentiment he is trying to express. I ask questions, and follow up. I am happy to show up.


I don’t think he realizes this. His lack of reciprocity when it comes to active listening skills, and paying attention to “bids” are kinda hurtful I guess.

: / It seems trivial, and I wish I could bring it up without fear of it becoming A BIG EMOTIONAL THING where his defenses are triggered.

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