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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5763
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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In 2 weeks it wll be my 50th birthday. I have talked to my

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In 2 weeks it wll be my 50th birthday. I have talked to my husband about where I'd like him to take me for dinner. I want to go to the Cheesecake Factory, but because we went there last year and he didn't like his food he absolutely refuses to go back. I've reminded that I should get to pick the restaurant and that I shouldn't have to pick something that makes him happy. I even suggested that he try a different dinner, but still he refuses to go! It would also be a good night for us to hang out with our 4 adult daughters and their kids, including the daughter from Arkansas, as we live in Texas. He insists the subject is closed and won't even talk about it. I feel as though my desires don't matter to him and that he doesn't care about my birthday! How can I get him to compromise and understand how much this is hurting me?
Hello, I'd like to help you with your question.

It sounds like your husband is not putting you first, even though this is about your birthday and not about him. The food could not have been so bad that he could not deal with it for one dinner to make you happy for your birthday. But it appears that this is not so much about dealing with food as it is about your husband insisting on putting himself first before you.

If this has become about "winning" to him, then it will be very difficult to make him give in and let you have what you want on your birthday. He is going to want to resist even more the harder you try because he doesn't want to see you win the argument. He is totally ignoring your feelings in favor of his own and in favor of being the victorious one.

What you can try is something he may not expect. Tell him that if he is not willing to go to the restaurant you want to go to for your birthday, then you will go without him. If you are already planning on meeting family there, then you can celebrate with those who want to be there for you. Let him know that you feel bad he won't be there, but that you understand his choice. Then make plans to go without him. Most likely, he will see that you are willing to leave him behind and change his mind. But by being willing to go without him, you take away his power to make your birthday all about him. You also take away his ability to make you upset on your birthday. If he has no power he may change his mind.

I hope this has helped you,
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