(This post is for humor. It is not a scientific comparison.) I live with one cat, Norie. My husband died in 2009. While remaining open minded to a new relationship, I wonder how living with a cat compares to living with a husband.
Norie is a black, personality-loaded pantherette. She is funny, easy to get along with, and keeps me company. A husband would or could be an unknown mixture of a lot of unknown, complex habits, opinions, and life styles. In other words, he could be a major unknown factor in my life. So one point for Norie. But a husband could bring new surprises and adventures to my life so one for each. Husband: 1, Cat: 1.
Norie in some ways is like having a husband! She gives me affection; shares her time with me but has her own times alone; makes me laugh; makes me feel like I am the most important person in her life….. Oh, wait, I am the most important person in her life: I feed, medicate, love her and clean her litter box!
I did all of these for my husband, (except the litter box!) Norie does provide some of the same companionship factors as a husband. But a husband would not be dependent on me for everything; could be a listening ear with appropriate, compassionate, verbal responses and support. So 2 points for husband. Husband: 3, Cat: 1.
Instead of a husband’s warm body to snuggle up to and hug or be hugged by at night, I have Norie, who curls up behind my bent knees if I am on my side. A husband gets a point here, since he has more to offer. But on the other hand when I am restless, can’t sleep, get up a couple of times Norie goes with me and waits to see what I will do or waits on the bed until I come back.
If I have been up and down too many times and she needs her sleep, she will get up and move elsewhere and come back later after I am asleep. I don’t know of any husbands who would tolerate my restless efforts to go to sleep anyway. So two points for the cat. Husband: 3, Cat: 3.
Norie snores, but so do I. A man my age is likely to snore too. Since a husband’s snoring would be much louder than Norie’s snoring, she gets a point. Husband: 3, Cat: 4.
Being awakened by a husband may or may not be a wonderful experience: kisses, caresses, embraces or scratchy chin, bad breath, grumpy…. So he is an unknown factor.
Norie wakes me up by pawing my arm three times. If it is too early I just cover my head and tell her, “It’s too early,” in a very groggy voice and she leaves me alone for 30-60 minutes. With a cat I know the routine. A husband would be an unknown but intriguing factor. So a point each. Husband: 4, Cat: 5.
With a husband I would expect that we get up when we get up and fix our own breakfast. This is really an unknown. Yet the surprise of a wonderful husband fixing me breakfast every now and then and my doing the same for him gives Husband a point. Husband: 5. Cat: 5.
When I finally do get up, I go into the bathroom while Norie inspects the bathroom perimeter for any bugs, then waits patiently at the bathroom door. She then escorts me from the bathroom to the kitchen, just in case I forget where to go or that I am supposed to be preparing her food. A husband would never do these things for me. Husband: 5, Cat: 6.
When I get to the kitchen Norie sits patiently while I prepare her food. I wouldn’t marry a husband who expected breakfast served to him everyday, whether he waited patiently or not (at least not for long.) So a moot point; no point for either. Husband: 5, Cat: 6.
If I have a snack during the day, Norie will make little kitten sounds and snake around my ankles and circle them like a shark to tell me she wants something to eat too. She is on a diet to lose a few pounds, so I only give her dental treats on occasion. Husbands may want snacks too but they can get them for themselves. Husband: 6, Cat: 6.
Which brings me to another problem wives often have with their husbands. Norie will eat anything!! Crickets, small spiders, silverfish, little bugs, and miscellaneous other critters. So they are good for some degree of pest control. Well, husbands don’t normally eat these kinds of things but they may eat any food and sometimes large amounts of food. Whether they are good about killing or dispensing bugs is an unknown. Husband: 6, Cat: 7.
As far as affection is concerned. Norie wants mosly chin rubs and neck scratches and only when she asks for it. I think my choice of a husband would be one who is kind and loves affection like I do. Husband: 7, Cat: 7.
With Norie there is no problem about what I want to watch on television or what I want to do in our home. With a husband there may be some shows one or both of us might have to miss, but we can always record the unwatched show to view later.
But some nights I don’t even turn the TV on and enjoy the quiet. What if my husband doesn’t want to enjoy quiet evenings or wants to jack the television volume up too high? Too many unknowns at this point. Husband: 7, Cat: 8.
My husband wasn’t super-hairy but I have heard tales from other wives about bathtub or shower drains clogging from husbands not cleaning the drain from shed hair. Well, I have one cat with a thick, rich black, coat that never ceases to shed, even after brushing her. But she doesn’t shower.
At least husband’s can clean up their own shower drains and probably would not shed nearly as much hair as Norie. Husband: 8, Cat: 8.
Living with anyone requires some give and take, disagreements, frustration, and arguments. Since I am the one with the cat’s food, I am in charge and she knows it. A husband would be a totally different situation, but one with more fringe benefits. Husband: 9, Cat: 8 .
You know how some husbands take a nap every day, after a long day at work? Cats sleep about 16-20 hours a day! Norie sleeps while I am gone and wakes up easily, then sleeps while I do at night. But Nories has a tendency to wake me up way too early for a little cuddling. No point here. Husband: 9, Cat: 8.
Some husbands are very social and some are hermits. Norie is friendly, but like me, needs alone time. I do believe the man I would marry would be more like Norie and me. So one point each. Husband: 10, Cat: 8.
Norie is just plain cute, entertaining, trusting, affectionate and loving. I know this because she allows me to give her medicines twice a day with little to no resistance. Husbands can be all of the above too, but bring a complex mix of potential new problems to my life. Husband: 10, Cat: 9.
So now the question comes, how much more complicated would my life be if I were to marry someone??
Never mind! Points do not matter!! Norie would have to approve of him and he would have to be a cat lover. Problem solved!