Today I was home all day with a whiny, kind of sick, but not really sick child (Kitty has allergies with a touch of a virus according to the doctor - no fever, but she threw up while walking to the school bus. She had to be ordered home after Bob "tattled" on her, because she really wanted to go to school).
Bear came home from school in his usual cranky mood and proceeded to flop down on the couch and start verbally poking everyone.
Then he got on the phone. After 20 minutes on the phone I told him it was time to get off (family rule is 10 minutes). He ignored me. The phone is on the wall in the kitchen and the kids usually sit on a stool at the bar 3 feet away to talk on it. No big deal, but anyone passing by has to lift the cord to get past or they get "clotheslined." I had to pass by several times as I started dinner. He complained that I was "trying to take his head off," because the cord rubbed on his neck every time I lifted it. I responded that he wasn't supposed to be on the phone anyway. I didn't say this a "sweetness and light" tone, but I didn't yell at him either. He muttered under his breath. I walked away.
10 minutes and 2 reminders later he was still on the phone, without his chores done. Finally he got off the phone and came into the room where most of us were sitting which was on his chore list to neaten today. He looked around and stated that everyone needed to pick up their stuff. I told him he could do it (everyone has to pick up other's stuff and wash other people's dishes...). So he huffed and puffed and muttered, and started tossing things at people - most of which didn't belong to them. Then he tried to leave. I called him back and pointed out what still needed to be done (including vacuuming - "I did that a few days ago." "Do it again."). I called him on the muttering. He growled. We both ended up speaking in "irritated" tones to each other.
I redirected him. Repeatedly. He got more and more irritated. I got more and more irritated. He barked at me. I fussed at him. He accused me of wanting him to be perfect. I told him I just wanted him to do a better job. He accused me of thinking he was stupid. I told him if he couldn't figure out what needed to be done then it was my job to tell him what to do. Finally he got it to the point where I could stand to look at it, and I ignored the rest.
Then he walked into the kitchen and asked me to make something special for dinner?!!!
I HATE THE WAY HE MAKES ME FEEL!! As Integrity Singer stated eloquently in a recent post, "THIS IS NOT ME!!" I am NOT this person. I don't want to be this kind of person. I hate that he can make me be this kind of person.
I want to be that happy, slightly manic person again. The one who loved to decorate and give advice. The one who sang when she was in the house alone (Ok, all the rest of the time too). The one who loved to bake and make Halloween costumes. My online friends even gave it a name - MTM Syndrome (MTM=Marythemom). When someone took on multiple projects and did too much they were described as having MTM Syndrome. Now I can't even get my big patootie off the couch to make dinner. I feel like I'm on simmer all the time.
Half an hour later Bear asked if he could have back some of the candy that he'd given me yesterday (he said he'd given me almost all of it). I semi-jokingly called him an "Indian Giver" (there needs to be a better name for this) and told him they were upstairs. He got offended by my "racial comment" and muttered something along the lines of, "if you're going to be like that, then I don't want them anyway," then stormed off to his room.
Hubby finally got home and took over. He got Bear back off the phone and eventually got Bear focused on getting his chores done. Bear tried to lie and say he was done with his chores (when he'd never even started most of them). When confronted by Hubby he was a little confrontational, but did them without too much argument.
At one point Bear threatened to leave again. I wouldn't chase him.