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Reluctant dancer

(55 Posts)
Gordonbennett Sun 14-Jan-18 19:12:37

My partner loves ballroom dancing, he’s retired (we don’t live together) I still work full time. We have been dancing on and off (me off) for around 5 years. I go once a week, he goes another two times on his own. I am far too tired to go any more in the week.

I love music and dancing (not good at ballroom) but he makes it a chore as he is so obsessive/serious about it. He criticises me, never any praise. I dread going because of this and we’ve had many an argument about it.

I know many women would kill to have their man go dancing, so I feel I’m missing something here. Am I wrong to feel this way? He makes an enjoyable pastime deeply unenjoyable.

MissAdventure Sun 14-Jan-18 20:13:35

I'm not sure I would want to go at all if your partner can't relax about it. Have you told him how it makes you feel?

BBbevan Sun 14-Jan-18 20:46:15

Well just don't go and tell him why. You have a duty to yourself and your happiness. Life is too short to be miserable.

Gordonbennett Sun 14-Jan-18 21:50:31

I’ve told him how I feel/how he makes me feel, he can’t see it. Evidently I’m the one who is too serious about it. I’m conscious that I’m not very good, so on the few occasions we have been ‘social’ dancing I’ve told him not to do anything ‘fancy’ just basic stuff. He then does all these steps that that I’ve not done etc and I completely lose my confidence (what little I have) and we have an argument. He says I worry about what people think, he’s right, I feel foolish and I’m sure he makes me look it too!

I don’t think I have a problem with dancing, I just think I have a problem dancing with him!

janeainsworth Sun 14-Jan-18 21:58:25

A good teacher might help, gordonbennett.
Would your partner go to classes? The more you learn, the easier it gets, but you have to know what you’re doing IYSWIM.

Gordonbennett Sun 14-Jan-18 22:05:03

jane we go to classes, but I learn very slowly and he wants to learn every dance in one lesson! He’s very pushy and a bit of a perfectionist. Although I’d love to learn to dance, the pressure he puts me under is very uncomfortable, after all it should be fun, we are not in it for medals etc.

M0nica Sun 14-Jan-18 22:17:40

If you do not want to do it. Don't do it. Tell him firmly that you have tried, but find it all too difficult, If he really cares about you he will accept that.

If he keeps grumbling and putting pressure on you, you may need to rethink the nature of your relationship.

janeainsworth Sun 14-Jan-18 22:30:21

I agree it should be fun gb.
It seems a pity, if you would really like to dance, that your partner is spoiling it for you.
We go to classes and we only do two dances in one 2 hour class. We do the same dances for 3 weeks and the teachers are really good at going at the right pace for each couple.
I think dancing is such good exercise quite apart from the enjoyment of the dancing itself, and we have met some lovely people too.
I hope you can work something out smile

Anniepops Sun 14-Jan-18 22:38:56

I love dancing but have very poor coordination. Your dance class sounds like a nightmare to me. I would hate it. I too dance to keep fit but we follow familiar steps and routines to different music and songs each week. It is so much fun. I do hope you can resolve this as you clearly enjoy dancing but your partner is very much the problem. Good luck.

eazybee Mon 15-Jan-18 08:25:55

I think you have to either give up ballroom dancing with your partner, and be prepared for him to find a more amenable partner, or put a little more effort into learning the steps. I can't believe you are as bad as you say you are if you have been dancing together for five years, and love music and dancing.

NfkDumpling Mon 15-Jan-18 08:28:44

Can you find a different class? One you can go to on your own? Sneakily. In secret. On the days when he goes on his own. Then, 1) you get to learn with a different partner who you’ll be more at ease with, and 2) You may learn moves he doesn’t know!

If he does find out you can just say you wanted to surprise him.

MissAdventure Mon 15-Jan-18 08:30:21

Maybe you could find a more patient partner to guide you?

bikergran Mon 15-Jan-18 09:15:47

think hes been watching too much Strictly!!!

Pamaga Mon 15-Jan-18 09:25:19

Tell him to find another dance partner. Go and do something you really enjoy while he is dancing!

radicalnan Mon 15-Jan-18 09:29:24

Let him find someone else. If you don't enjoy it, maybe he is not the partner for you. it would be unfair to crimp his style and there are plenty of lady dancers out there looking for a man who can dance. I used to take my dad to tea dances and they were full of two ladies dancing together due to the lack of men.

Life is too short to make something so trivial an issue. Of he were a fantastic golfer and you were very basic you wouldn't be able to play together with any success.

I can't dance at all, and my dad was able to whisk me around, his fancy steps were something that gave him pleasure and he must have looked like a small chap, negotiating a large wardrobe over a rope bridge but he enjoyed it.

razzmatazz Mon 15-Jan-18 09:31:54

Tell him how he makes you feel then don't go any more. He may come round .

sue421 Mon 15-Jan-18 09:32:31

I am so glad you don't live together sounds a bully. Think about what you want. Go to lessons by yourself and ENJOY dancing.

GoldenAge Mon 15-Jan-18 09:35:37

Gordon Bennett why is this man even your partner if he makes you feel so inadequate - you don’t live together and yet you feel this way - can you imagine if you did live together and saw more of each other - might he complain about other things - i’ce Gone through the whole thing of ballroom and Latin dancing been made into a chore rather than an enjoyment because hubby doubted himself and always shouted at me for his mistakes - simple - I just stopped going and putting myself in the firing line - what will life with this man be like when you retire?

TillyWhiz Mon 15-Jan-18 09:36:19

Whatever hobby they take on when they retire, a lot of men become so obsessional about it. I am a birdwatcher and if I could have a £1 for the number of photos of kingfishers I've been shown I'd be a millionaire! I think you'd be wise to suggest that you perhaps find another dancing couple having the same problem. That way you can keep an eye on him but dance at your own pace.

carolmary Mon 15-Jan-18 09:40:45

I sympathise with your plight being myself a very indifferent ballroom dancer. If you want to carry on doing some dancing, why not try folk dancing? It is much more fun than ballroom dancing in my opinion. Let your partner go to his classes on his own! You could then invite him to a barn dance and see how you get on with that. Have a look on line and see whgat"so on offer.

Gordonbennett Mon 15-Jan-18 09:41:28

I think he is the problem not the dancing. You can’t have it all as they sayconfused

Thanks for your replies, I don’t feel quite as bad nowsmile

Gordonbennett Mon 15-Jan-18 09:50:05

I can't dance at all, and my dad was able to whisk me around, his fancy steps were something that gave him pleasure and he must have looked like a small chap, negotiating a large wardrobe over a rope bridge but he enjoyed it.

This made me smile, and only if he were grateful I did just that! He’s not happy unless we learn another dance and another dance, and more steps and more steps, he’s quite competitive though doesn’t want to do medals etc. Do I think he’s good? Not at all, his timing is poor, and I’m ALWAYS leading because of this, but he won’t take ANY constructive criticism, so it all goes pear shaped.

When we very first started I used to chat to other people (I liked the social aspect) he didn’t want that, he just wanted to dance, and perfect it, and that’s how it is. He can’t bear ‘going wrong’ where as I think it’s hilarious, so it’s all far too serious for me I’m afraid.

Gordonbennett Mon 15-Jan-18 09:58:01

I quite like the idea of line dancing, he doesn’t like that ‘it’s boring and repetitive’. I like the folk dancing idea carol

goldenage that’s exactly what happens, I’M the one who makes mistakes. There is never any praise from him whatsoever, even though he knows how tough it is for me. And although there are valid reasons we don’t live together, I can’t see us doing it with his mentality.

tilly he has another hobby which he is also obsessional about. Thankfully my ‘services’ are not required for this!

quizqueen Mon 15-Jan-18 10:07:14

Partners or married couples don't have to pursue the same hobbies. Let him follow this one by himself and dance with someone else, which he obviously does at the extra sessions he takes, as the experience seems to be upsetting you. I must say though that he doesn't sound like a very nice bloke.

Tooyoungytobeagrandma Mon 15-Jan-18 10:09:15

If he kept criticising me I'd end up stabbing him with my dancing shoes! Maybe you need lessons with another partner at same stage as you until you get confident enough to dance with you man. He's seems a bit of a knob imo. Good luck and remember to stamp hard on his toes now and then flowers