What he says: “All my life I’ve wanted to be with someone who shares my interests.”
Sounds nice, right? We all want a partner who will be supportive of our interests and hobbies, someone who will enjoy time spent together doing what one loves and learning to love it too. If only that was what he really meant.
Translation: “I want you to become a mirror image of me. I will not teach you anything or tolerate imperfections as we “enjoy” my stuff. I will not support any of your interests (which are boring, anachronistic, and of no value, especially if they don’t produce any income) nor will I return the favor of your hard work in learning my stuff. You can expect endless criticism as you struggle with something that is, after years of practice, second nature to me. I will claim not to remember a time when these things were difficult for me and insist that any rational person can pick these new skills up in five minutes or less. I’ll call you a moron on a regular basis.”
The fact is, I have tried to learn to do what he loves the most, which is being in a boat on the water, but I don’t love it. He becomes Captain Bly the moment he sets foot in a boat and I become the world’s most stupid crew. He uses language that is unfamiliar to me and as soon as I internalize one term, he starts issuing commands using another. He has stated many times that he will not teach me, that I should pursue some “independent study” to learn to sail and handle a boat if I truly want to “share” his love.
He has made no effort to support me in my love (horses) and in fact had nothing but criticism for my methods. When I had a horse at home, he complained that I spent too much time with it. When I made a point of spending more time with M he criticised me for “abandoning” the horse, and told me over and over again how much time his friend B spent with her horses and how it was only right to exercise the horse as much as possible, blah, blah, blah. I never could get it right, so I sold the horse. I was working at a job 45 minutes away (each way,) dealing with a nightmare teen son as well as a cranky M and had nothing left to give to a horse, but that’s another story.
My point is that no matter how hard you try to support him, it will never be good enough. Because he is the “expert” on the subject, you will forever be inferior. There will be ample opportunity for him to insult you and he will take advantage of any hesitation on your part. This is not what a healthy relationship looks like.