Luck to Have Tobacco-Tolerant Spouse?

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12pups

Preferred Member
Feb 9, 2014
1,063
1
Minnesota
I've heard a lot of chest-drumming from men playfully claiming they wouldn't quit smoking for their wives(I sure hope they were just kidding, anyway). Ain't no way, ain't no how. Wearing the crown in their marriages, they put their foot down!
Can’t be true, of course. I mean, I like my pipe, but I never gave it a ring and it never gave me a hug or kiss. It never brought me a coffee when I wasn't expecting one or led me onto a dance floor and made me admit to myself I was having fun.
My wife is a Nordic Queen, with a crown at least as big as mine, probably bigger. So I have doffed mine many times, humble in her presence, because of her majestic capability of putting up with me. She’s not my first wife by state standards, but she is my true wife. And I surely didn't win her over by charm or money. She loved me for no other reason than that I was me. That's a lot to ask of anyone and not something I take lightly.
Though I could, I’m just not going to spend that kind of tolerance like cheap currency. "Me-me-me. You said you love me, so love THIS about me."
I think – believe this or not – she married me because she trusted that I cared for *her*, too. I told her, “I love you.” She sent it through her whatever-mechanisms-women-have for analysis and the result that popped out was, she believed it.
We became part of something bigger than either of us alone. And who I am right now is no longer separate from that new entity. I am not exactly the guy I was as a bachelor.
In short, her wishes, her desires, her aspirations have high priority in my decision-making. What clothes I wear. Frequency of when I wash dishes or do laundry. What I choose to cook for dinner. Our vehicles, how rooms are remodeled and decorated, what movies we watch, when we go to bed, what order we take showers in, even what woodworking tools I indulge myself in, how often and at what price or whether I am buying YET ANOTHER gun (though she has almost as many as I do now, something we both really enjoy).
It's not just "do what Pups wants to do when he wants to do it." And that is no sacrifice for me. I don't lose anything by that. Even though as a bachelor I would have "more junk," I don't feel I'm missing anything.
Would I quit smoking a pipe if she asked me to? Yes. In that very moment. Would I resent her for it?
I would feel a small loss maybe. But resent, no. Because I like her way of thinking. I like the way she is *her*. And that would be more of her coming out. I like it that she has a man she is proud to claim, proud to hold hands with, proud to have found.
Nothing else compares to that. If I know something bothers her, I'm not going to keep doing it. How could I enjoy it then?
Maybe that's the only explanation necessary. I could not enjoy smoking, if it bothered her to distraction that I smoked.
She asked me not to smoke in the house. So I do not smoke in the house. I know that she prefers I do not come to bed smelling like smoke. So I gladly accommodate her in that, and will not smoke a pipe before bedtime – or if I ever feel compelled to, will likely shower before bed. Resent her for it? Dude! I GET TO GO TO BED WITH HER. Even if I could resent it all the way to the bedroom, I probably wouldn't resent it much after that.
She has questioned why I returned to smoking. I had, after all, been tobacco-free 25 years. But I think it was honest curiosity. She didn't press when I couldn't explain it in a way that would satisfy someone who didn't already know or vaguely understand.
Good spouses are fickle(not just women, I think – but spouses in general, both men and women). Unpredictable in wonderful ways. Let me show you.
I did not smoke a pipe this past weekend at all. I went to see her where she was locked up for work for two weeks a three hours’ drive from our house. Saturday would be her only free day. I would spend the day and return the following morning.
I did not smoke on the drive, which I sort of wanted to do. I have quit smoking in the truck now and had it detailed and its upholstery cleaned so that driving in my truck doesn't make me smell like smoke. Nor did I smoke when I got there. This was all for her, sure enough. But I was happy to do it and wouldn't have enjoyed smoking at all if I thought it would be a distraction for her when I got there. This trip was for her, but being for her, it was for me, too.
But get this. After lunch with her she wanted to go to the Old Market, a collection of stores in a “non-mega-mall setting,” making them quaint, an attraction for that reason alone if nothing else. And… the very first store she led me to was
A tobacco shop.
Nothing but tobaccos and pipes and cigars. Old style. Worn wooden floor. Creaky boards. Tight little shop packed completely with tobaccos and pipes in boxes and in displays. A smoking room. She had looked this shop up first and studied it long before I came. She was eager for me to see it, something like watching me open a surprise present, given for no reason but "I was thinking of you."
Oh she wouldn't come in the door. She couldn't stand the smell of all the bulk tobaccos coming out of the door when we opened it. She sat on a bench outside and enjoyed a beautiful day watching green horses pull carriages down the street and all the various green costumes and green face paint of pre- St. Patrick’s Day festivities while I studied everything there in the store.
Funny thing – I would have preferred shopping at P&C online. This store really didn't have anything I was interested in – except for churchwarden pipe cleaners. I bought a couple fistfuls of those. And I enjoyed being in a room full of men and women who were, like me, a little bit knowledgeable about pipes and cigars.
She was disappointed I didn't buy more than that at first, expecting that I would have had a field day in there. But then I think she was kind of impressed. My pipe hobby is not out of control. It’s deliberate and careful.
Maybe the whole thing was to set me up? Make me feel indebted to her? Because, you know what followed was I had to go to every frickin' lace outlet, stupid curiosity shop and nick-knack outlet in the center.
But back at the motel room, no. No, I got the distinct impression it was more that she just loved me. And it was lovely spending the balance of that day alone with her, in privacy, no other concerns in the world. Didn't really want to leave to have a bowl right then.
I don’t get to smoke my pipe because I demanded it as the one who wears the pants in the marriage. I don’t brag that I get to smoke my pipe and take my pants *off* for a young, lusty redhead.
I’m just saying it’s nice that I have a life-partner who appreciates pipe smoking as “my thing,” and announce here matter-of-factly, “If she didn't, it wouldn't be.”
Bottom line--I smoke a pipe because I’m lucky who I married, but even if this person I’m married to had turned out to be more opposed to my smoking, I’d *still* be lucky.
I just wouldn't be smoking.
:)
Pups

 

salmonfisher

Senior Member
Feb 12, 2014
332
0
Well said, I sure hope you let her read that, that is some major brownie points, easily 5 to 10 years worth.
I switched to pipe for many of the reasons you said above, she hated smell of cig smoke and I finally relented.
Good for you, or lucky for you

 

oldtoby

Preferred Member
Dec 7, 2011
797
317
Nice post.
I'm truly blessed to have a lady who loves my pipes and tobacco, as they're a big part of me. I pity the man who doesn't.

 

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flakyjakey

Preferred Member
Aug 21, 2013
1,118
1
Pups, I enjoyed your post. It resonated with some aspects of my life. My wife is a nurse. Nurses are bossy (in a nice kind of way). She is anti-smoking, but she tolerates my hobby and in winter I am allowed to smoke in the kitchen.
As a Christmas gift she bought me my "last pipe" - a beautiful 1908 Peterson silver-mounted bent billiard, which I treasure and in which I smoke only Christmas Cheer. For my 60th birthday last year she bought me a stunning 1914 Barling.
I think she loves me because I am a challenge! She would never ask me to give up my pipe, but if she did I would - in a flash!!
In fact, I would rather give up the pipe than wine - wine is something we both enjoy, and can SHARE!! I would never open a bottle of fine wine unless she was there to share it with me.

 

fadingdaylight

Preferred Member
Jan 8, 2013
1,194
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I never get tired of hearing what you have to say 12pups. Again, you have very eloquently put in to words a concept many of us tend to overlook in our day to day lives. Thanks for making me stop to smell the roses for a minute.

 

allan

Preferred Member
Dec 5, 2012
2,429
1
Bronx, NY
Thanks for making me stop to smell the roses for a minute.
12 pups
Your posts are extremely thoughtful and full of great wisdom.
My wife is very tolerant of my smoking in the house, but would prefer I don't smoke at all because of the health issues.
She respects my desires, and I try (at least now I do) to be mature enough to smoke when she is not around and treat her with the kindness that she shows me.
After 37 years of marriage, I think I'm much more sensitive to her wishes and try to be less self involved than I've been in the past.
Thanks for this post.

 

crazypipe

Preferred Member
Sep 23, 2012
3,485
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My wife loved the smell of latakia, and would buy pipes she knew I liked( MAY SHE REST IN PEACE.}

Very well wrtten pups :puffy:

 

phred

Preferred Member
Dec 11, 2012
1,755
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Lovely story, 12pups - you're a lucky man.
Last year, my wife and I attended a steampunk convention in the Seattle area (Bellevue, specifically). We arrived early in order to have some time to wander about prior to check in, and in our wanderings, passed a tobacconist's place that was not quite yet open. We had breakfast around the corner, and as we headed back, she asked if I'd like to stop in - Would I? Certainly!
We had a pleasant time wandering from front to back - small space, cigs up front, cigars in a humidor along one wall, pipes in cases and pipe tobacco toward the back, along with other accessories. Wound up buying a tobacco pouch and a tin of Escudo (yeah, taxes and all), and I grinned all the way back to the hotel.
A tolerant spouse is a wonderful thing. Enjoy!

 

plateauguy

Preferred Member
Mar 19, 2013
2,414
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Excellent post, Pup!
Having a supportive wife, in anything, is a true blessing. Your post made me think and count my blessings all over again.

 

brdavidson

Preferred Member
Dec 30, 2012
2,018
1
Pups, I love reading your posts. I appreciate the time and thought you put into them. And your sentiments are absolutely dead on in my book.
For Teddy and others like myself missing our significant others, it warms the heart to think about how right your post is (although saddens me just a bit on remembering what I'm missing). I'll raise a bowl to you and your wife tonight, glad that a "brother" is enjoying the immense pleasure of an incredible spouse.
Brian

 

layinpipe

Preferred Member
Feb 28, 2014
1,025
0
Nice honest and well written piece, Pups. It is very interesting to get a perspective from someone who has much more life experience than myself. My gf and i have been together for over 3.5 years and lived together for over 2. She hates smoking and the smoke that comes with it, as she has never once smoked a tobacco product in her life. She loves me enough to not have to agree with and like it, but to tolerate it and know that it is something that i enjoy and makes me happy. We argue about it from time to time in regards to my frequency of puffing and the time i spend smoking and hanging out at my local B&M. But overall, we find a middle ground compromise and get on with life. Would i give up my pipes? I don't know, i am very opinionated and stubborn and my first response would be, "HELL NO", and be the chest thumping, pants wearing dominant male stereotype you wrote about. But when push comes to shove, if she actually made it crystal clear that it was either her or my pipes, i'd probably tell her alright. This, of course, would be a facade and in reality i would just find a clever hiding spot for my stash of now outlawed tobacco paraphanaelia and smoke whenever the opportunity presented itself. Febreeze spray, heavily scented fabric softeners, air fresheners, cologne, toothpaste and mouthwash would become my new best friends. It would be an adventure to see how long i could go without being discovered and prosecuted to the full extent of her own form of iron fisted law. I would, in time, then become an expert at lying and deceiving people and live happily ever as a politician.

 

sailorjeremy

Senior Member
Feb 25, 2014
420
0
Virginia
I really dig this one! I'm very grateful that my wife is accepting of my hobby. She wasn't so much when I was smoking cigars, but she actually enjoys the smell of pipe tobacco. Thank goodness!

 

voorhees

Preferred Member
May 30, 2012
3,758
574
Gonadistan
I always consider my wife when I smoke, she likes some room notes, others not so much. I will open windows when the weather allows when I smoke indoors and spend time on the porch as well. She is very supportive of my pipe smoking. I over time have learned to be more tolerant of her interests as well. Finding peace in between is better than the alternative.

I love her, I do not position myself as the authority of the household. Just stronger when needs be and gentle at other times.

We had a rough patch lately, but I never questioned the marriage or my love for her.

 

mrdottle

New member
Jan 13, 2014
48
0
Well written as usual 12pups! I am not only happy and surprised my wife has been tolerant of my pipe smoking (in my man cave only), I am more surprised she is still tolerant of just me after all these years. She doesn’t necessarily condone my pipe smoking, nor does she condemn it. And that’s fine by me, i.e., no arguments or discussion on the subject.

 

12pups

Preferred Member
Feb 9, 2014
1,063
1
Minnesota
Thanks, tank! And yes, Voorhees. I know what you mean.
I was hoping that posting it would inspire more men to post about how much consideration they *do* give to their wives' perceptions and druthers. This is their partner, the single-most important person in their lives. Her opinions matter, right?
And how solid relationships work this stuff out, it's worth talking about here. There are many of us looking around to see what the breadth of normalcy is, and to get clues about how we're doing.
I think by nature, maybe, or acculturation (or both), men tend to keep their feelings of respect and admiration toward their wives kind of quiet (or else look like sissies). But, c'mon -- didn't they get married because this other person rocked their world?
Okay. Some didn't get married for that reason. Some marriages are two single people who cohabit the same building, little more. Some feel trapped or act like adolescents rebelling against their mother, hiding their expenses, sneaking around in the garage or basement like they're getting away with something.
But aside from joking about the stereotypes (which is fun, sure enough), when men seriously talk as if they have to "keep their women in line," it portrays them as weak for staying in a failed marriage, or weak for not having attracted a life partner they perceived to be "worth" them.
Vice versa. When women fall into that comfortable rut of complaining about their husbands, or about "men" in general(and just how many did they marry, right? How can they make such gross generalizations), I have to ask what bait they were using when they caught their guys. Fishing off the bottom with something rotten? Probably not catching wall-mount game fish.
To complain about a wife, or brag of serving a wife with ultimatims, backfires if the point was to look strong and masculine. Instead, it makes that man out to be so disgusting that no respectable woman would be attracted to him; or worse, a misogynist, who believes women are chattel.
The woman I married is a reflection of who I am, so I take pleasure in polishing that mirror every chance I get (double entendre not intended, though I'm smiling about it anyway).
There's a difference between what I'm looking for here and people bragging superficially about "trophy wives" and "trophy husbands." It's more about the excitement of finding the "right" partner for you. My wife, for instance, when I met her, it was as if I was always waiting to meet her. A "missing person," an anonymous silhouette of a person "backfilled" with images of her from the present all the way back through my first consciousness. She was in her 30s when I met her, but it was if I instantly knew her all my life. She was the little girl I stole apples with -- who until that moment, never had existed. She was the one I climbed trees with -- which until that moment, my memories were only of climbing them myself. She was the perfect match for me.
So yes. It matters what her opinions on my smoking are. I care about what she thinks and says. I *trust* her opinions and value her input. And if something bothered her, of course I would want to alleviate her discomfort if I had the power to do it.
That kind of relationship is worth talking about. In here, this forum. This is a good forum. This is a place with great people. And sharing things like this I think only reveals it more. Openness. Easiness. Relaxed and honest. Soft discussions in a mellow room of fellow pipesmokers, some filling, some tamping, taking turns speaking. Secure and unrushed.
So what kind of spouse did *you* marry? And don't you feel incredibly lucky you met up? More than six billion people on the planet -- it would have been so easy to have missed this person.
Women, the same: What kind of man you marry? (Careful of the implications of your honesty here!)
Single folks ... Sorry. We'll get you your own thread topic soon. And same-sex partners: no offense intended. But... could you pick up the point and change pronouns however is appropriate in your cases? Thanks much!
Pups

 

12pups

Preferred Member
Feb 9, 2014
1,063
1
Minnesota
Well now THERE's a regional bias for you. That bottom-feeder allusion is a reference, of course, to the American disdain for carp. Then I remembered that in England, just about every fish you catch is a type of carp. Not sure the analogy made it all the way across the Pond. Sorry about that!

 
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