Even in the best of relationships there are times when people do not see eye to eye. We are individuals with unspoken hopes and dreams of how life is going to be and when those secret wishes run into other people, they tend to shatter into a thousand sharp slivers. The fewer of these small little jars you keep hidden, the less likely you are to end up with shards of glass cutting you.
ZG and I try to avoid these issues by talking through everything. Our kids will often complain about how much we talk, but even with all that we share, there are little secrets that we sometimes keep even from ourselves. One of these little issues came up the other night when we were talking about the mechanics of the D/s aspects of out relationship. As we talked about what we had done and what we wanted to do it became clear that I was not developing into the Dom that she expected. This, in itself, is not a problem. We are humans and we are going to develop and change and in the end I will become the Dom I want to be and she will become the sub she wants to be. We will play together and with others but our relationship will be fine because we do talk about everything, and even if we are not always perfect, we are great together. It does leave me wondering about something, though, and that is how this little infraction slipped through our dragnet of communications?
We talk, Twitter, e-mail, IM and generally communicate all day long so how is that she had a different idea what a Dom should be? The short answer is multiple intelligences, but that is such a vague set of buzz words that it seems to miss the point. ZG is a researcher and will not go into a new situation until she has thoroughly analyzed it in the most minute detail. I, on the other hand, have to experience everything firsthand. She wants to read everything she can on the subject so she looks and feels like a pro from the very first moment. I would rather show up empty-handed with an open mind and a willingness to observe and learn by watching people. These ideas are almost diametrically opposed. One shows up bluffing their way into real knowledge, the other is a lurker that has nothing to contribute until he has something to contribute. There are other learning methods (e.g., mentors, classes, osmosis) and each has its values and flaws, but what it really comes down to is how you learn the best.
Do not get this idea of multiple intelligences confused with the feel-good, do-as-you-please attitude that seems to ebb and flow in public schools. There is a certain level of understanding and comprehension that must be reached no matter what method you use. Too often we see these different methods as the excuse for why someone is not succeeding, a la “Do not blame him for not knowing the alphabet, he is just a visual learner…” I call bullshit. I have two boys and they learn in completely different ways; one is constantly talking his way through a problem so you can see his learning process step by step, the other sits quietly observing until he has his brain completely wrapped around whatever it is he is thinking about and then starts talking with complete understanding. They learn differently but by the benchmarks commonly used to measure children’s learning, they are keeping up. Just because you are learning differently does not mean you don’t have to try. And just because you learn best in one method or another, does not mean that you don’t have to learn with other methods as well.
Just because my brain would rather see and be involved does not mean I should stop reading. Just because ZG learns through research so that she can talk the talk, doesn’t mean she automatically knows how to walk the walk. So now I am reading more, researching more and getting involved in the learning process in ways I never have before, and ZG is being patient with me so that we have a chance to experience things in real time and learn together. After all, we are a team in the end, and while we may not always be on exactly the same page, at least we are reading the same book.