This is the first of a series where I take a situation and write out what I consider in that situation and how I would probably react.
The Scenario: Sue is visiting her sweetheart Robin who lives with a long term partner named Jan. They are getting ready to go somewhere together for the first time in Robin’s car. Robin is driving, who sits where?
If I were Sue- I would go for the backseat, the last thing I want to do is take the seat Jan is used to. I want to be sure not to literally unseat her. It is a small way to show respect for their relationship. However if I were going to actually resent sitting in the back I would ask if I could sit in the front, that way I am letting my desire be known but in a way that still respects Jan’s prior claim.
If I were Jan- I would offer Sue the frontseat. I would say something like “You spend so much time apart, you should spend as much of this time as you can closer”, BUT I would only do so if I were going to be happy about being able to be gracious and not resent Sue for accepting. Otherwise I would ask “Do you mind if I sit in front?” Including Sue in my desire and giving her the chance to object.
If I were Sue and Jan offered- I would accept and thank her, sometimes letting other people do even small things to support your relationship is a great way to make you both feel good about that relationship.