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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Skeptical wife syndrome, anyone seen this? (14 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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RookieMage
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My wife has been somewhat skeptical about my new passion for magic, and it makes me a bit crazy. She does not see lots of effects from me because I have an aversion to showing her stuff until I have it down pat. And I'm a frickin Rookie Mage, so my skills are not quite at the Houdini level just yet... So my magic performances for her are somewhat infrequent and she does not seem to integrate the time I have to spend in practicing. I love the reactions I get when I show her something that I can do well, but the rest of the time she is less than enthusiastic about my taking time for it/spending money on it. Not so much that she is gonna strangle me, but sort of a less than cheerleader attitude, if you know what I mean. Is this common among significant others/has anyone else dealt with this and/or have a helpful tip for the newbie?
professorwhut
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My wife does not enjoy magic, she never has.
If I approach her with a deck of cards in my hands, she will run out of the room screaming.
After much soul searching about a signature, I decided not to have one.

TG Pop [aka ProfessorWhut]
george1953
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I am lucky, my wife enjoys magic and is very clued up with respect to moves sleights etc.
So I always show her any new ideas and know that she will tell me exactly what she thinks of it. To me having someone tell me truthfully what was good, what should be changed etc. is a useful weapon to have.
By failing to prepare, we are preparing to fail.
Lance Inkwell
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My fiance and I have been together for 12 years and will be getting married in August. I have found over those 12 years that it's easy for her to feel like a third wheel when I'm very passionate about something I'm working on, like my art work or magic tricks. It was almost like she viewed my hobbies and practice as another woman. I came to realize that it wasn't the art or magic that she hated, it was the time that these crafts required, the time that I spent focused on them and not her and things that interest her. Once I learned this, I decided to find a way to make more time for her, and practice my art or magic when it doesn't get in the way of us being together.

The best way I went about this, was setting aside designated times for her, and for my hobbies, and then gave her my full attention when I was not working on my hobbies. Once she could see that she was just as important to me as my art, she learned to love my art and magic tricks. For the magic, I also found ways to do tricks with stories and things that interest her, and ways to make my tricks romantic. The other problem my magic had in her eyes, was she associated it with only clowns and geeks. (Not saying either of the two are bad, but in her eyes... you get what I mean.) She thought that guys who are interested in magic were sleazy and dorky. Once I showed her how magic can be a very intellectual practice, and how it can even be sexy- for lack of a better phrase, she learned to appreciate it.

So my advice to you RookieMage, take her to romantic places and make roses materialize from thin air, show her a coin trick where the coins turn into diamond earrings, and probably the best trick of all- make your magic disappear for a few hours and give her your full attention. Make her feel like she is more important than anything you do, and she will start to support you and cheer you on. I know this is all easier said than done, but it worked for me. Good luck!
"________________________________" -Teller
Dougini
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Quote:
On May 14, 2015, Lance Inkwell wrote:
My fiance and I have been together for 12 years and will be getting married in August. I have found over those 12 years that it's easy for her to feel like a third wheel when I'm very passionate about something I'm working on, like my art work or magic tricks. It was almost like she viewed my hobbies and practice as another woman. I came to realize that it wasn't the art or magic that she hated, it was the time that these crafts required, the time that I spent focused on them and not her and things that interest her. Once I learned this, I decided to find a way to make more time for her, and practice my art or magic when it doesn't get in the way of us being together.


Smart man, Lance! Welcome to the Café! Smile

Doug
RookieMage
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Thanks for the feedback all:

Prof Whut: My wife does not run but she will (on occasion) roll her eyes. And I love your post signature too :o)

George1953: Do you mean that your wife knows the ins/outs of your effects or just comments on the performance?

Lance: Great advice, and something I can probably start doing right away. After 30 years of marriage, keeping the romance going is important and why not use magic to help?
MGordonB
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It's a cliche but it's very true - happy wife, happy life.

As long as I spend some time with her, listen to her and let her vent, keep a heathy bank balance and a zero Visa balance, my wife is pretty OK with my magic hobby.
MichaelJae
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Has your wife seen you perform for strangers? Has she seen the fun your having and the bit of joy you create in that moment in time for someone random. Once she experiences those reactions, she might perceive things differently.
Lance Inkwell
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Thanks Dougini. I'm glad to be here! RookieMage, hope you find my advice useful.
"________________________________" -Teller
MVoss
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Part of the problem is that she knows you and has certain expectations and ideas about you, and suspending disbelief can be hard for those people who know us best. Friends and family in that way are always very hard to perform for.
Kabbalah
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I met my wife while performing in a bar twenty seven years ago.

It is still magic!
"Long may magicians fascinate and continue to be fascinated by the mystery potential in a pack of cards."
~Cliff Green

"The greatest tricks ever performed are not done at all. The audience simply think they see them."
~ John Northern Hilliard
MichaelMason
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First and foremost, it is important to be supportive and respectful of one another. Your partner is not require to share the same interests as you but I hope she respects your passion for magic. Recently, magic has become a newfound interest of mine. Fortunately, my specialty will be illusions and my partner loves them! She does not seem as interested in some of the other ideas that I have but she does listen to me and offer ideas when she has one. I may not accept all of her ideas but I show her the same courtesy by listening to her.

Oftentimes, some significant others seem apt to dismiss certain ideas, or some subjects altogether, because they are not interested in them. They fail to see the bigger picture; all they really need to do is respect and support their partner, and at least listen to them when they talk about something which interests them. In fact, I enjoy watching the news and discussing politics. My partner HATES both! She cannot stand either one! The news, however, does tend to report some interesting things so she will watch it with me from time to time and we will end up discussing the topics which interest us. This is something she has grown to somewhat enjoy. It took time of course.

To be honest, my partner's main concern right now is when I start looking for an assistant. I do not know whether this is something I will have to advertise and interview for as I am hoping to find somebody willing to volunteer. Perhaps a friend. My partner will not be able to accompany me to all of my shows. Her first idea was for her to be my assistant. I will not cancel a show simply because she, as my assistant, will be unable to make it. She does not like the idea of another beautiful woman, "half-dressed," assisting me in front of large crowds of people. Such an arrangement, of course, would be strictly on a professional level. At times, I will probably be putting my life into this person's hands!

Has anyone else experienced this with their partner? Concerns about a young, beautiful assistant working closely.
MichaelMason
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Furthermore, my partner seems more 'freaked out' about my affiliations with certain groups. She assumes that I am an 'occultist.'
Aus
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Quote:
On May 15, 2015, MichaelMason wrote:
Furthermore, my partner seems more 'freaked out' about my affiliations with certain groups. She assumes that I am an 'occultist.'


You need to hide your illuminati meetings a bit better Michael, and besides magicians got burned at the stake for using witchcraft so if it's any consolation things could be worse. ;-)

Seriously tho, I wounder with other things being considered the lack of interest or enthusiasm is due to how we present out magic to our partners. I have to admit that a lot of magicians perform magic in a very clinical fashion without much fanfare and without it much of the romanticism of magic as an art form might not shine through and be apparent.

I mean how many card transpositions and versions there of can she really endure and still hold that same enthusiasm as the first time you showed it to her. There needs to be an emotional element to our magic that needs to be just as important as nailing down that pivotal slight.

If she can feel the benefits of a well crafted performance she might better understand our interest in all this stuff.

Magically

Aus
Ed_Millis
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How much time and passion do you give to what she is interested in?? Are you willing to put the stuff down and go shopping with her just because she asked?

Also, does she feel you are just trying to fool her? Or does she feel drawn deeper into this part of your life?

To be marginalized, either in time or intellect ("you just want to see if you're smarter enough to fool me!"), is to feel disrespect. Have you just sat down and had an honest talk about what's going on beneath the surface? If she is really that upset, are you willing to shelf the magic for as long as it takes to repair the trust? And does shd know and believe that?

Else you may wake up one morning next to a deck of cards -- only!!

Ed
RookieMage
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Thanks again for the added feedback all, it's clear to see that this magic community thinks highly of keeping a happy balance; as MGordonB says, "Happy wife, happy life" and it is true. I'm happy to report that I do take time to care for my wife and her particular interests (even shopping with her Ed :o) but she is just not as "on fire" with my new passion as I am.

So after much thought, I have decided to stick with what I have always told my wife, "the beatings will continue until morale improves" and just pray that she does not give me the dirt nap while I sleep...
(for the slow ones, that Was a Joke :o)
Ed_Millis
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Sounds like you're off to a decent start. Some years ago, I had to apologize for making it all about me n magic, and I put everything in the attic. Five years later, I dared ask her permission to pull it down, with the caveat that if it ever got that bad again it was all going in the trash! It's been 8 or 9 years, I think, and still going strong.

Ed
RookieMage
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Hey Ed, I bet you are a great husband and it sounds like you are blessed with a great wife too! Yep, the balancing act is tricky, but my focus is to make sure she stays happy enough to not be put off by my magical interests. Ie, if I wanna have some fun, I gotta make sure that she does too. I also LOVE your website and demo video, it looks to me like you have been a pro for quite some time now, which is Awesome IMO :o)
bowers
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My loving wife usally goes with me to all my shows.
And helps with the packing and un-packing too.
She knows most of the workings also.

I will perform for her a new effect before putting
it in my show.She knows what to look for.And can tell
me if I flashed or something just doesn't look right.
Todd
johnstu
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I imagine there is probably a difference in how a spouse looks at magic depending on whether they are married to a working magician or a hobby magician. I'm a hobbyist and my wife still thinks of it as playing with cards/coins. She's not particularly interested in it.

Would the wife/husband of a performing magician be more invested in the magic as it is what puts at least some of the food on the table? My magic just puts cards on the table, cards that get in the way when we sit down to eat.
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