Breathing Room by Aaron Walton and Andrew Logan
Aaron Walton (AW): One of the things that happens after being a couple for 30 years and married since it finally became legal, is that newer couples often ask us for relationship advice.
While we don’t believe we have any magic solutions to offer, one aspect of our relationship does give us a somewhat different perspective.
My husband Andrew has a saying that has served us well: “One life isn’t big enough for two people to share”. This has been the agreement that we’ve made with each other from day one, even before Andrew made this observation.
Andrew Logan (AL): Aaron has his life, I have mine and we have our lives together. With two hectic schedules where (more often than not) Aaron is in another city, we have to make a point to have dedicated time together. He’s the first person I want to tell when anything good or bad happens and I’m that person for him. We are also completely comfortable if a day or two goes by and we’re unable to speak.
(AW): As one of our closest friends has observed: we are not a “we” couple.
What is a “We” couple? They’re the couple that becomes a package deal that doesn’t seem able to function without the complete agreement of the other person. You hear them say: “He doesn’t like going to the movies so we don’t go that much” or “I’ve always wanted to go there, but he’s never wanted to.”
(AL): None of our friends find themselves saying “Aaron won’t do that, because Andrew won’t want to” or vice-versa. As a result, both of us enjoy extremely close, lifelong friendships with many people, whether we see them individually or as a couple. We have no judgment when it comes to the “we” couple, we just don’t happen to be one of them.
We’ve learned to give each other plenty of breathing room.
(AW): Andrew’s independence is one of the things I most admire about him. He never puts his life on hold waiting for me. Looking back on our life together, neither of us has ever said: “I didn’t do that, because he didn’t want me to.”
Even when I’m in Los Angeles, we make sure to have alone time. Andrew is not a morning person, so I make sure to give him plenty of space to start the day before I engage. He makes sure to give me my own space after a long day at work.
(AL): One thing I know to be true that helps make our relationship successful is the fact that we have very similar interests. We like to do the same things in our spare time. Dinner with friends, going to the theater, or a night at home watching a movie on the couch. We are also connected by our bond to our families. We have three nieces and four nephews and six godchildren each of who mean the world to us and we play an active role in their lives.
(AW): I also think that we still find the same things funny. Laughter is an integral part of any long-term relationship. Andrew makes me laugh. While there is a constant debate among our friends as to who is funnier (hint…it’s not him). Humor is essential, especially during the tough times.
(AL): We’ve learned not to sweat the small stuff. While we both wish that there were more hours in the day so that we could spend them together, we realize that the time we do spend together is what really counts. Even if we’re still giving each other some breathing room.
Photo L to R, Andrew Logan and Aaron Walton
Last modified: March 8, 2018