Question: Dear Luise: We’re newly married and we’re fighting about Soaps. Do you have any experience with watching Soaps or refusing to? We’re both in our late sixties and retired. This is a second marriage for both us. We blend extremely well in every other area, but this Soap-thing has us at each other, constantly. My husband is a well-educated man with a fine professional history. I, too, have education beyond high school and have held responsible positions in management. I came into this marriage with no exposure to Soaps. I remember years ago being in the hospital and my roommate’s daughter would come and they would buzz about what I thought was their family. One day I said something about how interesting they seemed to be and she laughed her head off because her daughter was keeping her current with her Soaps. It sounded pretty pitiful to me, to tell you the truth. Before I married Tom, we were at his house and he pointed to a red light on his TV and announced that he was taping all my children. I thought it was a funny term to use for his two kids, but it seemed dear that he was doing something with family videos. That’s the gospel truth! Now, he won’t listen to me about how base they are or the time he wastes. He just tells me to find something else to do while he “stays in touch”. What can I do? Pat
Answer: Dear Pat: Watch. Keep him company just because you’re a new bride and would undoubtedly rather be with him than sulking about the house. See what you think after you have caught on to the various story lines and have gotten to know the characters.
I’m not saying that you, too, need to become a Soap fan, but I am saying that you need to know what you are condemning. Come on…narrow mindedness doesn’t become anybody. And who knows, you may find you like Soap Operas! Perish the thought!
To set the record straight, we watch two Soaps every night. It’s the fun part of the day when we have our “date”. We tape them both with a half hour of news in between. We never turn the TV on during the day, so it’s a special time for us. I can’t see where it has much to do with the amount of education we have, which is considerable. We also like books, movies and plays…in other words, all fiction.
Our interest has to do with it being an interactive medium for us. The VCR gives us that dimension. We fast-forward through the commercials, (except for our favorite Gecko), and all of the scenes that bore or insult us. There aren’t that many, by the way. We stop the action when either of us didn’t catch something or when we want to comment. We’ve been known to yell, ”Watch out! Look behind you!” and similar commands. We weep when it gets sad and laugh when it gets silly. When there’s someone at the door or the phone rings and things are tense, we stop the action and guess who it might be and what they’ll have to say. It’s a riot!
My obvious suggestion is to stop fighting about Soaps and see what you think. An open mind is a “many-splendored thing”. Blessings, Luise