Can't Dance With Wife or Best Friend

opendoor

Well-Known Member
#41
That is because you are still a beginner...
..He may not want to wait from 4 to 9 years for his wife and best friend to like dancing with him?
Hmmm, you mean I should better help instead of analyzing? Ok, but speaking frankly, I actually haven´t got any advice. Perhaps this one: Dave, try to dance as infrequently as possible with your wife. Try to build up your own dance clique. Learn independently and try to find your own way through the thicket. That may perhaps help to get back that shiver. I speak from experience. I always found my girl friends within my dance scenes since I´m a dancer. But dancing with a woman that is as ambitious as you are, really seems to be one of the most difficult things.
 

fascination

Site Moderator
Staff member
#43
that post is by open door
and, the OP never said he was better than his wife or friend, or worse, he just said it wasn't working...as to number of years it takes, it takes all of us who aren't delusional a number of years...certainly no one has to wait for anything if they don't wish
 

newbie

Well-Known Member
#47
I lead passably well everyone in my scene except the two people I want to dance with the most: my wife and my best friend.
My wife and I started taking classes together. We've always done well with other people but are constantly in each other's way when we dance together. The frustration has sent her home for the duration.
My best friend is an awesome, amazing dancer already. But I suck to holy hell if I ever try to lead her. I'm having a lot of fun at dances, except I can never dance with her.
Thinking about giving up. Why expend the time and resources on dancing if I can't do it with the people I actually want to? Advice?
Long-term prisoners when they meet and sometimes marry their regular visitors, once they're out they divorce. Because the said person was part of the prison. When you evade into dance, someone inside you does not want to bring his everyday prison on the dance floor.
 

toothlesstiger

Well-Known Member
#48
Long-term prisoners when they meet and sometimes marry their regular visitors, once they're out they divorce. Because the said person was part of the prison. When you evade into dance, someone inside you does not want to bring his everyday prison on the dance floor.
If your marriage is a prison, this is a problem well outside of dance.
I am at the point that if I can't dance with DW, I have no incentive to go out dancing.
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#49
In my experience there it is not actually more difficult _to dance_ with ones SO - what made it more difficult were two things:

1) We expected more from each other - we were good together in other areas of life, and we thought that because we are in synch at other times we would be in synch on the dancefloor, too. Instead we learned that our dance-selves were strangers to each other, and that was quite jarring. The idea that we shoud be "better" with each other than we were with strangers crashing against the reality that we were just as bad with each other as with other people was painful.
2) Because we care about each other we not only carry expectations from off the dancefloor onto the dancefloor, but also problems from on the dancefloor off the dancefloor. If things go badly with a stranger we forget immediately, if things go badly with someone we care about we will remember and think about it much longer and more intensly.

The idea that it will take you much longer to dance with your SO than with anybody else is an illusion - what really happens is that it takes much longer to dance consistently as satisfyingly as we think we should with our SO's, and that has more to do with the fact that we know that a good dance with a stranger is a gift, but we expect that a good dance with our SO is the lowest standard, and mindblowingly amazing is what we should experience more often than not.

If you accept that being partners and soulmates and whatever off the dancefloor does in no way translate in being in synch on the dancefloor in any way shape or form you will realize that it is exactly as difficult or easy to dance with SO's than dancing with anybody else. Once you have consistently good dances with other people you will also have consistently good dances with your SO, and only then will the fact that your personalities mesh and you are expressing that in the dance make a difference. As long as you are a beginning or intermediate dancer the challenges are mostly technical and real off-the-dancefloor chemistry doesn't help all that much more than being willing to work with each other like adults.

Gssh
 

dbk

Well-Known Member
#50
Thinking about giving up. Why expend the time and resources on dancing if I can't do it with the people I actually want to? Advice?
When you dance with someone you don't know well, it's easy to focus on yourself - what you need to do, what you're doing wrong, etc. Start dancing with your SO and suddenly you're more focused on them, more comfortable getting upset with them, less wiling to think "whatever, good enough, just make it work", more frustrated that there's no "magic", you take negative feedback more personally, etc. etc.

Partnerships and communication are hard... dancing with your SO doesn't make it any easier (and often makes it harder).

1. DRINK LOTS OF WATER. No, seriously.

2. Spend an entire social dance (or five or six) dancing only/mostly one them (unless asked by someone else, of course). Agree before you start that you're just going to laugh and keep going if it doesn't work. By the end, you'll hopefully be a little more comfortable - or at least you'll be so used to flubbing that you can take it in stride.

3. Take a few private lessons together. It's very hard to learn lead/follow/connection in group lessons.
 

tsb

Well-Known Member
#51
too bad you can't blindfold yourself and then dance with 3 different women of roughly equal size/build.skill with one of them being your wife. or vice versa.

1) you dance the same with all - which means you have a different expectation when you know it's the wife;
2) you have the same result with the wife, but you don't know it's her, so it's something she's doing that's different when she knows that she'd dancing with you.
 

mindputtee

Well-Known Member
#53
Or just a really big empty gym... I'd assume the women can be aware enough for when you are approaching a wall to warn him back to the center.
 
#54
Long-term prisoners when they meet and sometimes marry their regular visitors, once they're out they divorce. Because the said person was part of the prison. When you evade into dance, someone inside you does not want to bring his everyday prison on the dance floor.
I think I've made it pretty clear that my marriage is not a "prison" and I am not escaping it into anything. This isn't a marriage counseling forum and I'm not asking for marriage advice. I'm asking for dance advice. I'm irritated at those who assume that because I have more trouble dancing with her that we must be on the brink of divorce or murder.
 
#55
Thanks dbk and tsb for some good practical ideas. The blindfold idea sounds actually fun :) And we do have access to a very large dance hall when it's not in use, so it could even be feasible.
 
#56
and, the OP never said he was better than his wife or friend, or worse, he just said it wasn't working...as to number of years it takes, it takes all of us who aren't delusional a number of years...certainly no one has to wait for anything if they don't wish
I'm at about the same level as my wife and well below that of my friend. And yes, that's the question--- is it worth it to wait years and expend so much energy on something unsharable for a potentially very long time. Or is there some way to shorten that time.

Much thanks to those who have suggested ways to address that time differential. We'll put some or all of those to use and see what happens.
 

dbk

Well-Known Member
#57
I think I've made it pretty clear that my marriage is not a "prison" and I am not escaping it into anything. This isn't a marriage counseling forum and I'm not asking for marriage advice. I'm asking for dance advice. I'm irritated at those who assume that because I have more trouble dancing with her that we must be on the brink of divorce or murder.
You'd think people on this board would know better... dancing with your SO as your primary learning partner can be incredibly hard, even for the most stable of relationships. It takes time to sort out how to communicate in this environment, even if you're good communicators outside of dance... plus, you can't just throw up your hands and find a new partner when it gets to be too much.
 

dbk

Well-Known Member
#58
I'm at about the same level as my wife and well below that of my friend. And yes, that's the question--- is it worth it to wait years and expend so much energy on something unsharable for a potentially very long time. Or is there some way to shorten that time.

Much thanks to those who have suggested ways to address that time differential. We'll put some or all of those to use and see what happens.
Unfortunately, unless you're just naturally talented, there's not a whole lot you can do to speed up the learning process. And even if you could, 1) leaders tend to take longer to train up, and in the early stages they need to be "fixed" first; and 2) there will always be one person who is better, whether it's always the same partner, or alternates between either partner. Part of partner dancing is learning to be OK with being the less skilled partner... and the more skilled partner.

Oh - if I/we haven't said it already, taking private lessons (just you, not either partner) with a female pro will probably speed things along. Just don't compare your partner(s) to your pro when you're dancing with them!
 

fascination

Site Moderator
Staff member
#59
I certainly think that many couples who are otherwise very happy, can run into issues dancing together, or cooking a meal together, or whatever...


on the issue of how much time dance takes to do as well as one would like with anyone...you'll have to make that decision for yourself....I don't see it as a right or wrong...you weigh the pros and cons and you decide...and you then own it
 

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