Monday, February 1, 2010

In which my couple blows up and I rant about it.

Have you ever been given something, but not realized that in fact it wasn't given to you... that it was a "loan?" which would at some point need to be "paid back" in the future?  This happens too often here.  There is a history.  Boyfriend will do something, or offer to pay for dinner, whatever.  I'll ask him if HE'S SURE ABOUT THAT (remember... there is a history,) and he'll say yes.  Touched by what seems to be a gesture of generosity I'll cautiously accept.

And then, true to the ancient pattern, (history, wow, it repeats itself!)  I'll hear at some point in the future on a day where boyfriend is feeling nervous, about how he does all kinds of WONDERFUL things for me and how ungrateful I am.  How I'm act like a spoiled child, and don't do anything in return, and so on, and so on.  It got pretty verbally ugly this morning, people.  The f-word got involved.  There were pure insults, which in my mind brings us down to the level of just fighting, not even arguing.  This is a level I loathe to arrive at.  I do not want to be in a relationship where this kind of thing happens.  I recall that before the whole thing took a swan-dive over the edge this morning, I said I didn't feel like having a nervous conversation at 7am as I was waking up... but on it went, right. over. the. edge, and off to crazytown.

This, in itself, is a whole other can of worms... the getting nervous and taking it out on others thing.  He was supposed to be seeing someone to help him learn to deal with his nervous energy... except he's been "meaning to call them" for like, the past 5 months?  Priorities here become more obvious as time goes on, I'd say.  Boyfriend has hours and hours extra to give to work for free on the weekends, but picking up the phone for a few minutes during the week to book an appointment with a professional who may be able to help him deal with his anger issues, potentially helping to salvage a relationship before it implodes due to the intolerable nature of these outbursts?  Second priority, it seems.  

Hell, I suppose if improving this problem were really a concern to him, he could have even used a few of  those hours donated on the weekend to his employer to read a little self-help material instead... but I don't think that's happened either.

Anyways, according to how things shook down this morning, it's me who has a problem, and I can leave if I want.  Oh yeah, and it's also my fault, apparently.  

I don't even know how to explain the kind of pain and internal conflict I'm feeling as a result of this morning, this thing that ever so slowly, just keeps building on itself.  I know that each time this sort of thing happens, it hurts me more and more, because the more I see it, the more it looks like something that is just a pattern, that shows no signs of going away, no signs of changing.  I am utterly unequipped to deal with it, which I suppose logically would mean I should be considering not dealing with it anymore.  And if Boyfriends efforts to contact the professional who could help him, or even to try and be a little more attentive to the problem in general are any indication... he doesn't want to deal with it either.

What's sad is that there is so much good, and wonderful heart, and delight attached to this person I love, who just happens to have this unfortunate f-ing-creepy-little-nervous-accountant-tumor.  And I know now that in the end, it's the accountant or me who'll have to go.


Today's fight got rolling along because I didn't want to share a box of oatmeal.  Which he bought.  Which makes it his.  Isn't me NOT eating his oatmeal more generous in fact, than me EATING his oatmeal?  If I were to eat his oatmeal... wouldn't that make me the kind of person I'm accused of being right now, which is a "taker"?

(Logic?  Anyone?)

Moving along, according to the creepy-accountant, I was fine to take HIS beer the other night (this was in fact beer that he had said he would pay for & that I did not have to pay for which we both knew we would be drinking later on a visit to his sister.)

Let me remind you before we go any further that I am in a place I would never choose to be in were I solo.  I am here bearing that place and all the stupid games it plays with my sense of self and esteem out of love for someone who has a crazy (and very biased) accountant living in their head.  I am the one who makes dinner most frequently.  I am the one who does most of the housecleaning, and more of the grocery shopping.  I often assist crazy-accountant-in-the-head-person by moving his dirty laundry along through the washer and dryer.  I don't like ironing shirts, and I sometimes even iron his while I'm ironing the ones I wear to work.  I pay for my groceries, my travel, my cosmetics, my clothes.  I pay for everything I need or want, and I NEVER EVER ask boyfriend to pay for something for me, because I'm just fine paying my own way.  When it comes to shared groceries, more often than not, I'm eating about 4 tenths, and crazy-accountant-in-the-head-person eats about 6 tenths, though I always pay for half.  Ditto for consumption of non-food items in the house (he is mildly wasteful.)  I'm *happy* to pay my own way because it's simple and responsible and there is nooo risk of someone feeling taken advantage of.  But, when I'm offered something, and I check that the person is SURE they want to give it to me and they say yes... one would think it would be safe to accept right?  HAHA!  I should really learn my lesson on this one!  One must always check first for any signs of a malignant crazy-accountant-tumor lurking within the giver.

The fact is we've had a fight over oatmeal and beer.  How very very lame.  Clearly the larger issue isn't being addressed correctly, and I'm not sure that it ever will be.  If I have a problem sharing with my partner sometimes, it's because I am mildly territorial about certain things, but much more-so because I know there is a creepy little accountant that works away in that head of his, only accepting CERTAIN currencies of gesture or purchase to do the books.  The books are fixed, and in this way it will always look as though I am the taker to him.

History.  Repeats.  Itself.
People.  Rarely.  Change.

These are two lessons I think I need to learn.  I am, at this point, a hair's width from giving up on all that is great and wonderful with him, because when this happens this is just as equally terrible, and while feeling nice is nice, feeling terrible is well... to be avoided.  And feeling terrible in a situation where you are already away from all other familiar comforts of home results in a very special, very alone kind of sorrow.  Loved ones should not repeatedly make eachother feel terrible, because that is not what exemplifies the act of "being loving".

In the meantime, while I try to figure out if I've got any try left in me, I've decided to stop taking *anything*.  Even if it is offered, it obviously can't be trusted.

In fact, it's a whole other issue, but not accepting things offered (again part of the 'history') has lead in the past to crazy-accountant-in-the-head-person feeling shunned or something.  Like I don't want what they have to give or whatever.  This may even have been the very illogical starting point with the whole "no I don't want to share your oatmeal with you" this morning.  Maybe the accountant has rage that there is no currency to use for leverage later, I don't know.  But I've gotten sick of it before, and said that I don't want to share anything because of this "problem".  Love, and groceries CAN be mutually exclusive.  It's nicer when they aren't, but really if there seems to be a problem stemming from a BOX OF FRIKKIN OATMEAL, it seems to me that the love should stay, and the sharing of groceries should be put on hold.

Which is where we are at at 7:30 on this most lovely of mornings.


Jessica of Hey, Mons! said...

Hey Jessica,

I was totally in a relationship like this before with a guy who would keep tabs on everything. The weird thing is I was consistently giving more to him, like spending entire paychecks to buy him clothes or other stuff he had mentioned he needed all the while we would be going dutch to dinners and he would be calculating how much I needed to contribute to his water bill every time I would take a shower at his place. Also, the only gift he ever bought me was a book! And one I already had! It lasted 2 years and finally I just couldn't take it anymore. I guess I think that relationships shouldn't be about keeping tabs on who paid for the oatmeal or who paid last for dinner. It shouldn't even come up, because most likely you are both giving equally anyways in the end (housework, laundry, ect.) Keep your head up! I know how crappy this type of situation is :)

Jessica said...

Thank you. It's really nice to know that I'm not alone in the belief that relationships shouldn't be about keeping tabs, but more importantly on a day like today, it's really nice just not to feel entirely by myself. :)

I am *so* going to try your cold coffee thing too.

EFRUTIK said...

Hi Jessica,

Ughhhh I am not happy to hear of your troubles, that's for sure. Of course relationships are not supposed to be about tabs and etc. but most importantly they are supposed to be, I personally think, about working on issue that we each have. Not just with other people but first and foremost with ourselves. That's why I find it sad that your bf has not gone to get the help he needs. In the end he would not only help himself but also your relationship 'sigh'.

Keep it up Jessica, you are still a trooper more than you actually know I think. It is an enormous thing to turn your life upside down, to an uncertain place, with a person who is supposed to be you refuge and not source of sorrow in a totally new place. No I am not being naive about relationships (they are unpredictable to say the least), but still there is a limit to all things......

Jessica said...

I find it sad as well about the not going to see someone. Particularly after he took the first step in discussing it with his GP. I'm not the only person in his close circle to note that he has issues with his nervousness, and it has affected at times his relations with others, but honestly I think he'll always deny that it's a problem until it causes a really big problem for him, which will kind of make the seeking help thing a little too late.

It's true, there is a limit to all things. I'm spending my time feeling my limits out a bit, and realizing it's important not to let them bend too much at my own expense. Thank you.