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Did you ever ask yourself why do we do this?

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Did you ever ask yourself why do we do this?
Old 01-11-2012, 12:58 AM   #11
 
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I've done worst things with my money and time... so my wife is happy that it's at least going to fishes that the entire family can enjoy instead of those "other" things...

I also involve her as much as possible with fish and plant choices.

I guess if your wife knew other "hobbies" that you could get into instead, she would be grateful that yours is fishes.
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:16 AM   #12
 
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Keeping fish is usually relatively stress free for me. Outside of the occasional canister filter cleaning that takes 3 times as long as I planned, I enjoy most of it. My girlfriend likes the way planted tanks look so she does not mind me spending time on them. I also do not do as much maintenance as th OP does.
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:28 AM   #13
 
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Primesix I have been asking myself the same question here a lot lately. Not sure what the outcome will be but I still love planted fish tanks just not sure if I am meant to have a nice successful planted tank. Here lately I have thought about ripping every plant out and have fake stuff in there!
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:37 AM   #14
 
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I kinda agree with you, Prime. Lately my fish and tanks have been giving me a lot of trouble. Bettas that fin-bite and get fin rot. Newly set up tanks with leaks. Coming back from a 24 hour vacation to find a goldfish with torn fins. But I have faith that I can fix these problems. And I know when I do, I'll be back enjoying my fish. Even when they cause me stress and anxiety I am still enthralled by their movements. Just watching my goldfish glide around the tank is enough for me to keep fighting my current hardships.

This hobby is expensive and time consuming, but I do it for those times when I stand back and am stunned by the beauty of the tanks and the fish. The hours that I have spent gazing at my pond and koi alone are worth all the frozen hands, mosquito-bitten legs, and water-logged phones that have come from it. Just to watch those fish glide under the surface, I will endure the hottest of summer days and the worst of the mosquito onslaughts.

If it has been this stressful for you for a long time, you might want to reevaluate your current tank and the time/energy you can give to it. Maybe the plants do need to be scaled back so you can enjoy the tank more. Just a thought. I hope you can find a good balance.
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Old 01-11-2012, 03:43 AM   #15
 
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My week usually goes something like this. I get up somewhere around noon. Yes I said 12pm. This is because I generally don't get home from work until 3-4:30am. Time varies because it varies from day to day when I go into work which is anywhere from 3-5pm. So when I finally get up. It takes me a few to actually wake and get moving. Once I am to that point. I have 2 1/2 year old daughter who is a daddys girl especially when I am home. So I try and spend time with her as I really don't spend that much time during the week as I work 50-60hrs a week if not more. After all that it might leave me 30 mins to an hour before I have to leave for work. My point here is I might have 5 mins to look at my tanks a day. Now this is every Monday thru Friday and sometimes Saturdays as well. Generally I have one day a week to even work on my tanks. Which are either Saturday or Sunday varies from week to week. I have gotten to the point where all I do is test the water, do a slight gravel vacuum and a water change. Now that doesn't sound like a lot for 2 tanks but when you have a 2 1/2 year old that has to help it can take awhile. LoL
I have had my 55 gallon since April in that time I have changed the way it looks 4 times and I mean completely redid it. For various reasons from not having the right plants for the equipment I had. To just not liking the way it looked to whatever. See I am never happy with the way it looks even if it is "perfect" in others eyes. I am being to realize that I have issues with that as I long for a beautiful looking natural plant tank. Now I know this is realistic as I see soo many on the forum that have them but yet I can not. I know that is partially my fault for having my hands in the tank to much so to speak. That's just how I am. I have always wanted a fish tank then I found this forum and saw the planted tanks and that did I had to have one that looks like "that" and still (in my head) have not reached that point. See now this is why I have complainted the idea of just saying it isn't meant to be and giving up. Have even gone as far as thinking of completely giving up and getting rid of my tanks. Then there are days that I see new growth on my plants and the fish swimming around happy-go-lucky and think well maybe there's nothing wrong. But I still have to wonder is it really worth it. Trying to remember to fertilize the plants, feed the fish, do water changes, cleaning the filter for all 5 mins a day I might be able to "enjoy" the tank.

Bottom line here is I think so and I will eventually find that happy point. I have never done anything where there wasn't bumps in the road so to speak. I just have to make it to the smooth sailing part and I know you will to. Good luck and don't give up!

Last edited by Boredomb; 01-11-2012 at 03:47 AM..
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Old 01-11-2012, 03:46 AM   #16
 
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Sorry double posted
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Old 01-11-2012, 04:35 AM   #17
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PRIMESIX View Post
I just needed a moment to ramble.

I love my aquarium and all my wonderful fish, I got into the hobby about a year ago and I have to admitt I got bit by the planted tank bug. But here's the thing, everyday it's something different another obstical or perhaps a headache. When I wake up in the morning I turn on my CO2 and add my ferts to the tank, then I go to work and on my breaks I log into this forum and read about tanks,plants and fish. When I arrive home I feed my fish and careful examine the tank for algae and possible problems, then I perform my water peramiter checks.

Now, let's not forget every Saturday I perform a 2 hour water change/aquarium cleaning (with the wife yelling at me that it's taking to long and we need to do other things), so after a inavitable argument we go do our grocery shopping and other family things. I figure "ok" we are home now and all of our chores are done, I will go sit down and enjoy the tank and relax since I dedicate soo much time into maintaining it only to find out that since the wife was yelling at me when I was cleaning the tank I forgot to plug the heater back in. WOW, now the tank is five degrees lower than it usually is and i'm beginning to stress out, but then my youngest son walks over to the tank and says I really like your tank Dad and I smile and he smiles back at me and now im calm again.

Now Sunday, I go to turn my CO2 on and notice I'm low so now I tell the wife that I need to get CO2, I drive to the store and surprise the only place I can get CO2 in my area is ALL OUT!!! I now have to wait three days untill they get more, so now I start complaining to the wife on the ride home that my tank has to go three days without CO2 and I'm not happy about it. Well, this starts an argument because now I'm edgy and she doesn't want to hear about it so I suggest we go to the store and finish up some shopping. While were at the store I made a big mistake, my wife goes one way and tells me to take my son with me and she will meet up with me it ten minutes, well I take my sons hand and we go to the fish section just to look around and kill some time. I notice that they had stocked some new heaters so I pick them up just to look them over, all of a sudden my wife taps me on the shoulder and says are you missing something, well it turns out when I was looking at the heaters my son wondered over to the next isle and wife was mad as a hornet (this was not a fun night when I got home)...

Hey, lets not forget plant trimming day.. Dont you just love it when you put your plants back into the substrate and a couple hours later to your surprise there floating on the top!!! Yeah baby, that really makes my ears turn red!!!!!!

So I sit here on the computer asking everyone, is it worth it?
It is definitely a wonderful, worthwhile hobby.
No, it is not worth your relationships. Taking time to make your wife feel special, helping her and so on, and then putting in fish time might keep things more harmonious. In fact, a little planning might reap large rewards: plan that prior to every visit to the lfs, the wife gets taken to lunch, and after the visit to the lfs, on the way home, you stop and buy chocolate or similar, wife will associate the lfs with good things. And on Saturdays, your wife understandably wants to get shopping and other chores done, maybe if you just changed the schedule and did the water changes in the afternoon there would be less friction about that process.
And looking at fish stuff while your little child wanders off, it would not have been a very big deal in the old days, but now there seem to be more dangers out there for kids.
It's alphabetical, family comes before fish.
But I feel your excitement and yes, aquariums and fish and plants are wonderful

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boredomb View Post

Bottom line here is I think so and I will eventually find that happy point. I have never done anything where there wasn't bumps in the road so to speak. I just have to make it to the smooth sailing part and I know you will to. Good luck and don't give up!
That is an incredibly wise perspective not only on aquaria, but on everything.

Last edited by Lucille; 01-11-2012 at 04:41 AM..
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:40 AM   #18
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucille View Post
It is definitely a wonderful, worthwhile hobby.
No, it is not worth your relationships. Taking time to make your wife feel special, helping her and so on, and then putting in fish time might keep things more harmonious. In fact, a little planning might reap large rewards: plan that prior to every visit to the lfs, the wife gets taken to lunch, and after the visit to the lfs, on the way home, you stop and buy chocolate or similar, wife will associate the lfs with good things. And on Saturdays, your wife understandably wants to get shopping and other chores done, maybe if you just changed the schedule and did the water changes in the afternoon there would be less friction about that process.
And looking at fish stuff while your little child wanders off, it would not have been a very big deal in the old days, but now there seem to be more dangers out there for kids.
It's alphabetical, family comes before fish.
But I feel your excitement and yes, aquariums and fish and plants are wonderful


That is an incredibly wise perspective not only on aquaria, but on everything.
Well said!!! Thank you

I also know what you mean as far as the old days, I remember when I was younger I would play outside from sun up to sun down. The thought of danger never crossed my mind, however now we have to keep an extra eye on our children no matter where they are. I tell my kids my childhood stories and they cant believe that there was no IPOD or Playstation/Xbox. HAHAHA
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Old 01-17-2012, 01:24 PM   #19
 
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PRIME, hope things are going well. As I'm sitting here at the office and stressing about my poor fishies/shrimp at home with a case of Ich I thought of this thread. I figured I'd add to the running commentary about stress and wondering why we do this. I'll probably veer of on a tangent here and there as I clear my head, blah blah :)

Long story short I have Ich, I came home from a work trip and sure enough the few new Tetra's I added before I left (no QT, completely my fault, I had the mindset of "oh it won't happen to me" curse you PetsMart!) anywho, it hit me like a ton of bricks, I have been SO involved and dropping decent cash on the tank the last couple months I almost said screw it, but then the wife said "If you give up on those poor fishy and throw out the load of money you spent on that tank we are not getting a new one" As I was sitting on the computer reading up on Ich (honestly, my first battle with it and the tank has been running for apx 5 years) my 2 and half year old comes up with some plastic play scissors and a piece of our shrub from the patio and tells me "Daddy, I have plant for fishies, I help you, carefull not hurt fish" So I told her no baby not right now, the fishies are sick, to that she responded "Daddy, fishy sick, I kiss them, make them alllll better" then she runs over to the tank and gives it a kiss.

That right there motivated me again and reminded me that these are living creatures in our care. I was going to do everything I could to help them, stressfull or not. So we went to the store and got some Ich-Attack since it said it would not hurt the shrimp (which I have grown to love watching the shrimp/snails, almost as much if not more than the fish) So we cranked the heat up slowly and it's now running at 85/86ish, doing daily 15% water changes, and dosing the replacement water with a 1/4 dose of salt and the Ich-Attack. Hoping for the best. Meanwhile my wife is shaking her head as I come home with more receipts from the pet store. I'm hoping with everything I have I can cure it naturally and do not have to dose chemicals that are likely to desimate my shrimp/snails.

Anways, enough of the ramble about my ich. Please don't reply with ich specific responses as I don't want to hijack the thread. I guess the point I was getting to is while yes aquariums are an amazing stress reliever and can bring loads of joy to you and your home. Just as with anything in life, family, etc. There are times when you want to ring it's friggin neck. But you don't, because you remember the times when as a family you would sit and watch the aquarium rather than vegitate on the television. When your daughter would learn to count by finding snails and can ID fish/plants at the petco better than the half-wit employees.

So yes, I recently/currently have been asking my self "Why do I do this", and the answer for me is partially the challenge, partially the joy, and partially the feeling you get knowing you are doing something good by providing for an otherwise helpless and defenseless creature(s). Now you can make the arguement that fish just as with anything else in nature is best helped by leaving it alone and staying the heck away (IE: rain forest, extinction, etc) but I look at it as if I don't bring home those innocent fishies someone else who cares little to none will and they may end up suffering even more. So I feel good about it, even though they are currently sick. And believe me I've done enough beating myself up over this for now setting up and properly running them through QT, but what's done is done, a lesson learned. Unfortunatly, at the expense of the health of my aquarium.

Lastly (I hope) as I sit here rambling on and worrying about my fish, pondering the "why" question I keep picturing how great it's going to feel once I beat this hurdle, hopefully nurse my fishies back to health, and get back on with loving my aquarium even more so than before. Because now, we have a bond. We overcame an obstacle where others may throw in the towell.

That is why I do what I do.

p.s. sorry if half of that makes absolutely no sense whatsoever, lol
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:00 AM   #20
 
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Wow, 2 hours every Saturday? And you check water parameters daily? How long have you had this tank? It does look heavily planted, but you could make changes and go without CO2, which would cut down some of the work and hassle if you found a good balance there.

I just got back into this and am nothing but ecstatic that I did. I have a heavily planted 65 gallon with no CO2. I chose no CO2 because I didn't want to deal with the hassle, and so far all is well. Again, this is a newer tank, only started in November, and I haven't had any fish illnesses (knock on wood), so there may be some differences there (and a 'this is new' enthusiasm). There are definitely times it's been stressful, but that's mostly been due to worrying about new fish in a newer tank and hoping everyone acclimates.

My water changes don't take very long. I'm wondering if you're causing yourself extra hassle that you can trim out to get yourself back into enjoying things, because the enjoyment should be exceeding the work put in. Can you do certain things every other week or once a month? And if it's an established tank, I'm not sure why there need to be daily water parameter tests, unless again that's a CO2 thing.
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