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Am I a bad girlfriend for not caring about boyfriend's job?


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My boyfriend is a cop and loves his job. He's an amazing human being and great police officer. I feel like while everyone is so fascinated by his stories, I just don't care. Ilove him for who he is and did not fall in love with him because of his profession. Every evening when he's home he goes into endless detail about the calls he received, which to me, is the same stuff, different day. As much as I am pro-law enforcement, I just don't care to hear these stories and figure I'll hear all about it at the next social gathering. On the reverse, his eyes also glaze over when I talk about the details of my everyday desk job so I keep that limited myself. I will always support his career and will listen to him talk about the weather all day, I just don't care about the police work. Am I a bad girlfriend for not caring for his day to day stories? Is it okay to not care about your partner's job when everything else about him/her you love?

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6 minutes ago, hedgehog56 said:

Every evening when he's home he goes into endless detail about the calls he received, which to me, is the same stuff, different day. 

Just try to limit the shop talk at home. Segue the topic to something else without an abrupt change. How old is he? Is he new at his job?

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It might be how he decompresses after work. The talking helps. That means that you don't need to care as such or listen intently and be invested in it but rather just be there while he vents.

Could also be that he assumes you are interested because you haven't told him otherwise and most people do think that makes him interesting, so he is relating to you on that level. In that case, gently change the topic to something that does interest you.

As for figuring out which is which, you might want to probe him a bit about it and see.

Also, I think it's kind of odd that you'd rather talk about the weather than hear another work story, even if both are repetitive topics. Is there some kind of underlying resentment brewing on your end about something? Like if you don't get to talk about your job you won't listen to his stories? Something else perhaps?

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20 minutes ago, DancingFool said:

It might be how he decompresses after work. The talking helps. That means that you don't need to care as such or listen intently and be invested in it but rather just be there while he vents.

Could also be that he assumes you are interested because you haven't told him otherwise and most people do think that makes him interesting, so he is relating to you on that level. In that case, gently change the topic to something that does interest you.

As for figuring out which is which, you might want to probe him a bit about it and see.

Also, I think it's kind of odd that you'd rather talk about the weather than hear another work story, even if both are repetitive topics. Is there some kind of underlying resentment brewing on your end about something? Like if you don't get to talk about your job you won't listen to his stories? Something else perhaps?

The weather quote was more of an analogy for something other than work 🙂 By this, I mean let's talk about the pets, weekend plans, video games, etc. 

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1 minute ago, hedgehog56 said:

The weather quote was more of an analogy for something other than work 🙂 By this, I mean let's talk about the pets, weekend plans, video games, etc. 

Fair enough. 🙂

I'd still find out if he is decompressing that way and even so, after you give him a moment, you can gently change the topic to something that you do want or need to talk about. Kind of create some limits via compromise.

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I appreciate your replies! I think I just need more assurance than anything that I don't have to care about his job. I fully understand it might be a way for him to decompress, although I'm not entirely certain if that is the case (as you mentioned suggesting clarify that). He's my more sensitive half (surprisingly with this job!!) and I need to work on the "gently" telling him I'm uninterested without him taking offense 🙂  As much as I like to hear the how he's doing, he uses that to dive iinto calls that don't necessarily affect his wellbeing during the day. I have abruptly tried changing the subject before but working on trying to be a little more natural.

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I think it's his way of doing two things, decompressing and also reassuring you that he his being safe in a roundabout way. One of by best friends would tell his wife the minutiae of his law enforcement day, assuming it would let her know he wasn't taking wild risks. She finally mentioned that she only wanted the highlight reel, and he slowed his tales.

Another thought, some cops don't like talking to other cops on the same shift or dept about the details of a day.

How long have you two been together? He may still have his guard up in some ways

 

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20 minutes ago, Coily said:

I think it's his way of doing two things, decompressing and also reassuring you that he his being safe in a roundabout way. One of by best friends would tell his wife the minutiae of his law enforcement day, assuming it would let her know he wasn't taking wild risks. She finally mentioned that she only wanted the highlight reel, and he slowed his tales.

Another thought, some cops don't like talking to other cops on the same shift or dept about the details of a day.

How long have you two been together? He may still have his guard up in some ways

 

Thank you for the personal anecdote. I love that, the highlight reel. I wouldn't even say that I'm worried because I trust his decisions and that he's got trusted contacts to call me should something happen to him. He also knows that I'm sick of the tales, more so when that's all our friends at a party want to talk to him about.

We've been together close to 3 years. I've been on ride alongs with him and we both have a dark, cynical sense of humor. He may have his guard up but I think we're more comfortable than not.

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Yeah, my husband tells me briefly about work, and even if I'm not really interested, I make sure to look at his face while he's telling me, to be present and respectful, showing that I'm listening.

But if the stories went on too long, I'd probably try to say in a lighthearted manner something like: Okay, we let each other know how our workdays went. I kind of want to get into home mode now. Lets decide on: something fun to do on our next day off/what groceries we want to get to plan our menu for the week/this is the interesting story I read on the Internet/this movie looks like it would be good to watch, etc.

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Because to him it's not just a job -it's his calling, his profession, his career.  It's ok if it's not your thing and certainly he shouldn't monopolize all conversations with anecdotes about his job but I think you're thinking it's just a job. It's not.  I can relate to that feeling for sure.

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2 hours ago, hedgehog56 said:

He's also just a big storyteller/sharer, so I'm not sure if that also is a decompression method or just who he is.

It's probably both. 

Some people are very chatty by nature. Add to that a love of their career, and you get your boyfriend's play-by-play of his days. 

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1 hour ago, Batya33 said:

Because to him it's not just a job -it's his calling, his profession, his career.  It's ok if it's not your thing and certainly he shouldn't monopolize all conversations with anecdotes about his job but I think you're thinking it's just a job. It's not.  I can relate to that feeling for sure.

Exactly, my husband’s career is WHO he is and I am immensely proud of him. However, he is not a talker I have to drag information and talking out of him . His career is who he is and who he has wanted to be since he was 16. He can’t function in work outside it. 

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1 hour ago, MissCanuck said:

It's probably both. 

Some people are very chatty by nature. Add to that a love of their career, and you get your boyfriend's play-by-play of his days. 

Me, I am a massive chatty Kathy. Some people love to talk. That is how they process and decompress. 

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You mentioned his eyes glaze over when it’s your turn to speak however.

I’d reflect on whether it’s his gift of the gab so to speak or his terrible attention span when the roles are reversed that’s causing this irritation and underlying resentment.

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A little bit of "how was your day?" is fine. However there's a saying: "don't take your work home with you".

That means after the re-entry zone when someone comes home, talks about their day etc., then it's time to shift gears.

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3 hours ago, Wiseman2 said:

 

(Sorry can't get rid of the quote part - pls ignore).  Yes, it's true when it's just work and it's stressful best to leave it at work for the most part. 

Here's what I think OP -he's tone deaf and a bit self absorbed - he knows he's going on and on and on and he must know he's not  getting enthusiastic feedback from you like more more more - but he doesn't stop and then he doesn't reciprocate.  So it's probably more about his lack of social skills/thoughtfulness than the subject matter.  And you would like the stories if it was just a smaller dose I believe.

When I was a SAHM I would have LOVED to talk about THE BABY alll day long.  I was so focused on all his antics and loved my job, it was my calling, it was my career for 7 years.  However I knew that despite my husband being over the moon about being his dad (that's where the comparison stops - I know you're not over the moon about your bf's career) - I knew it would bore him to tears to hear the blow by blow.  Snippets -yes, the best story of the day, yes.  I also knew who wouldn't be bored and wanted more more more -my mom, his mom, my sister.   The end.  So they got the blow by blow. It was obvious they loved it -couldn't get enough of it. 

And - I never ever did the glaze over thing with anyone whether I was sharing one anecdote or ten.  It's about balance.  You don't have to relate to his love for his job but he has to relate to boundaries.  Everyone shifts gears differently and the other gear need not be anything set in stone but there needs to be a give and take.

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42 minutes ago, Lambert said:

I'm going to go against the other advice here and say I think it's not a good sign of your compatibility. neither of you really want to hear what the other has to say. 

You want him to stop taking about something he has a passion for and he glazes over when you talk.

I think if the mundane things feel like this much of a chore now, what will it be in the long run? 

 

I think if she wanted him to stop talking "so much" without regard for her interest level that's one thing.  But if she has no passion/interest in his passion for his career- which in law enforcement I'm sure is a huge chunk of his time -I'd question it.  I am 100% sure I'd not have married someone who didn't admire and respect what my career is and my passion for aspects of it.  But I don't talk ad nauseum about it.  I would not have a happy or healthy marriage if I wasn't into my husband's career and passion for it, including the transitions he's gone through over the 25 plus years I've known him.  But he doesn't talk about it ad nauseum either.

Many people have jobs they leave at the office/at their jobsite - they live their lives with passions and interests in other things whatever that may be- they deserve to have a partner who shares at least some of the interest and passion in what they have interest in and passion for whether it be a job or not.  No one is better than the other - I don't think people who are passionate about their work are "wrong" nor do I think those who view their jobs as just a job are wrong.  But they all deserve a good match as a partner if they want a partner.

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19 hours ago, hedgehog56 said:

My boyfriend is a cop and loves his job. He's an amazing human being and great police officer. I feel like while everyone is so fascinated by his stories, I just don't care. Ilove him for who he is and did not fall in love with him because of his profession. Every evening when he's home he goes into endless detail about the calls he received, which to me, is the same stuff, different day. As much as I am pro-law enforcement, I just don't care to hear these stories and figure I'll hear all about it at the next social gathering. On the reverse, his eyes also glaze over when I talk about the details of my everyday desk job so I keep that limited myself. I will always support his career and will listen to him talk about the weather all day, I just don't care about the police work. Am I a bad girlfriend for not caring for his day to day stories? Is it okay to not care about your partner's job when everything else about him/her you love?

Me and my husband keep it to about 5 to 10 mins each when we get home, then it's relaxation time to talk about random stuff. Maybe suggest that to him.

Gosh there must be more to life than work.

Edited by smackie9
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I appreciate all of your feedback and for being so respectful! I didn't realize I'd get so many responses off one nagging thought in the back of my mind. 🙂  There's a lot that can't be mentioned just via a forum post without me going into gross detail and if I can converse with every one of you I would.

There is so much more to our relationship than our jobs and he understands that - I've been lucky to share my days with him and leftovers on our couch talking about nothing in particular still feels like a date night. I wouldn't say he goes into quote-for-quote detail on his job (I think he realizes when I zone out), just that I don't care what dead body he stumbled upon or how many rollovers he responded to. Whether he's chatty Kathy or decompresses, I understand the importance of not walking away. We've reasoned that my more technical job is a topic people don't fully understand and therefore segue into his job. Well, I'm not chatty Kathy in our relationship so I can attest to not showing as much passion. I'm switching into a more dynamic career that he's probably more excited about than I am and I know he'll support me every step of the way. I love your suggestions on getting the most exciting details and his feelings throughout the day and will try pushing towards that. 

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From what you've written, it seems that it's not just a job to him - being a cop is who he is and he's proud of it. People (generalising) usually love to chat about stuff they are passionate about and love it when you engage with them. It shows that you appreciate them, who they are and what they do. It's a great sign of respect.

Not wanting to listen = shutting them down.

My advice? For a certain amount of time actively listen. That means, repeat the highlights so he knows that you're paying attention -which is a great way to get him back on track should he be rambling- and ask him questions when appropriate. Then, find a suitable way to end that conversation and move on to an entirely different subject.

Works for me whenever a friend is excited to share something I'm not overly interested in. It's about making an effort. 🙂

 

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4 minutes ago, hedgehog56 said:

I love your suggestions on getting the most exciting details and his feelings throughout the day and will try pushing towards that. 

That sounds great! I hope it all works out.

 

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