I like to think and wonder and turn things around and around in my mind - not emotions so much - but what makes people tick, their inner workings. I don't claim to really understand myself, much less anyone else, but i like thinking about it, reading about it, putting new ideas together. I do like learning about philosophies, theologies, psychologies... Books, movies, essays, music, anything that presents new ideas about why people are the way they are, that's what i like.
Him - not at all.
He is fascinated by groups - the results of group dynamics - history, politics, economics, government - even sports. And facts - putting the facts together to see how it all turns out. He is - i'm not sure what - concrete, direct, no-nonsense (definitely that). But that all makes him sound flat or shallow or even unintelligent - all of which are incorrect.
He just rolls his eyes at my lines of thinking, and frankly, i can't even fake curiosity about the things that interest him.
And this difference plays out in our interactions too - not just in our taste in books or movies.
In our relationship - previously - and more recently than i care to admit -well - we've sometimes (too often) had that cliche'd argument in which i wanted to dissect every word and emotion and subtle gesture of what went wrong to figure out what it all meant. I wanted to talk and talk and talk about why and how...he wanted to call it done and have it be done. There's no easy middle ground between those two.
I actually want to think and talk and ponder and wonder about the good parts too. I want to know why this or that has this or that effect on me - or on him. What does he think about it, why, how would that change...
He, it seems to me, considers the facts, weighs the pros and cons, decides, and that's that.
It has taken me some time to realize it doesn't mean he is less invested than i am - because that is what i thought. My impression was that he was just doing it - as in going through the motions. To me, not wanting to parse it all out and try to understand it all the same way i wanted to meant he didn't really care.
And sometimes i think i want someone who will muck around in the depths of my psyche - play the mind games with me, impact me and manipulate me more mentally, use that as one more tool in his bag of tricks. Of course, i also think that could be much riskier and likely to blow up badly than any of the things we do now.
Also - where is the line between kink we play with to tease, to arouse, and to flirt, versus what he might use to provide control and containment and to keep me feeling strongly tied to him and going the way he wants, versus what is so interwoven into every bit of each of our days that it is no longer distinguishable as an intentional tool? At what level would i really be able to tolerate him seriously playing mind games with me?
So - yes - this is an area in which we are not so compatible.
It sounds insincere to say i've learned to live with it - but i have. I have learned more about how i am, and about how he is - and that, in many ways, it's good for us to be different from each other.
And, objectively, it sounds downright hokey to talk about liking the idea of doing things his way. And believe me - i've thought about it - and i don't understand it - but i do like the idea of doing things his way.