Scotland a wife who feels she is taken for granted by an unsympathetic husband who does not understand her
England a hen pecked husband who thinks he can now never do or say the right thing as his wife demands more and more freedom from their marriage
The personal monologues;
Scotland “I have been trying to tell my husband for years that I am unhappy in this marriage. He only ever listens when I threaten to divorce him. This time he’s back at the last minute making promises all over again. How can I believe him? I have heard it all before yet it still the same old marriage. He does not understand me. He does not sympathise with my wishes and views. If you marry a feisty socialist you should expect a bit of fire and passion for equality”
England: “I can’t understand what’s bugging my wife again. I gave her an expensive new Parliament a few years ago. She said that would make her happy. Now she says it’s not a good enough Parliament. Apparently some of the neighbours have got more powerful ones. We’ve never seen eye to eye over socialism. She knew that when she married me. Most couples keep off the topic of politics. Why can’t we? I have told her again I will give her Parliament more powers, so why does she keep going on about it?Why this permanent threat of divorce hanging over us?”
Scotland ” It’s just typical of him that he can’t see or wont see we do not spend enough on the family. I don’t know what he gets up to with those fancy friends of his in London. He tells me he’s not seeing some other woman, but he does spend a lot of time in the bright lights. He tells me he needs to keep our money with those bankers in London, and that we do not have enough to spend more on homes and welfare for our family. He looks rich enough to me. I think he’s being mean”
England “She doesn’t seem to accept I love her. I have been paying the bills and also keeping some savings for our old age. Now apparently that’s all wrong and I should be more generous. I am only trying to be careful so we don’t run out of cash. I can’t see what’s wrong with the decisions we’ve been making together in London. It always used to be just fine. The last thing I’m going to do is get involved with some other woman when I get so much trouble from the one I married. I have to keep in with the moneymen in the City as they look after our investments and send us money when we need it. If we broke with them we’d be a lot poorer.”
Scotland: “One thing I am fed up about is a spare bedroom. It’s not asking too much for heaven’s sake. My mother would like to come to stay occasionally. She at least would be someone I could talk to about my feelings. He tells me we can’t afford it.”
England: “I have no problem with her mother coming if she wants to. She does anyway. We have a perfectly good sofa bed in a downstairs room. Her mother told me herself not to bother to add another bedroom as she does not want to be a regular visitor”.
Scotland: “He always says the wrong thing – or more often says nothing. He doesn’t spend a lot of time with me, and when he does he has nothing to say about us and about our relationship. I give him the chance but he always fluffs his lines or is left speechless. He prefers to spend hours watching football or playing his war games. He should know I don’t like either of those. I do wish he would have some feelings and express them. His stiff upper lip and sense of martyrdom drives us further apart”
England “Whatever I say and do is wrong. If I ask her out for a romantic evening or week-end I am told our relationship is wrong and we can’t do that. Apparently the mood is not right. Every time she wants to sit down and talk over the same old business of what is wrong with our relationship. I sometimes feel like saying what is wrong with our relationship is that we spend all our time talking about what is wrong with it. But I know that would just make things worse, so I keep quiet. Someone’s got to try and hold it altogether. It’s easier to watch some football than try another version of how we can sort out the devolution of tasks within our family, or how we can determine the family budget.”
Scotland ” I am worried that he is going to upset our family doctor. He’s always going on about problems with our health service when I think it’s wonderful.”
England ” Scotland seems to think I want to get rid of the family doctor and take out private health insurance. I have absolutely no wish to do that but it doesn’t matter how many times I say so.”
Scotland ” I just can’t stand it. He shows no feelings for me, or for our family or for all in need. He doesn’t do enough around the house. He just assumes meals get cooked and shirts washed by magic. I just wish he would get in touch with his feminine side and show some normal human sympathy”
England: ” She says I don’t do enough of the chores, yet when I try to cook a meal I get shouted at for the way I use the kitchen. She should see how much time all the gardening, DIY and running errands takes. She says she wants me to get in touch with my feminine side. I am not sure I have one. I thought the whole point of our marriage was she liked manly attributes – my broad shoulders, my decent wallet, my bravery when faced with danger. Would she really prefer it if I turned out to be more feminine?”
To be continued - will they manage to find true romance as they once enjoyed? Can they find an answer to the eternal problems of who does which chores, and who pays which bills? Will they find a way of being friends and being able to talk to each other again? Will Scotland withdraw the divorce petition? Please let me know your thoughts.