… or disassembling crap without using of the word “I”. Because it allows me to yell at myself like a pro, while making my brain think I’m talking about somebody else. Yea, like that’s going to work. Really, now.. I’m having a bad day, so there. It’s about me. Why then am I so upset? What does my brain know and I don’t? More to the point, why should it be about me?
All right, so it happened. You had an argument with your wife. You growled, she yelled, you didn’t stop, she didn’t stop, things were said and now you’re miserable after a night on the couch. And she won’t speak to you. And it started because you didn’t want to put your clothes somewhere else and she wanted you to never put them there, no her closet door, because she uses that sometimes and it annoys her. Bullshit. Think again. Why are these crappy excuses for a fight always happen before bed? What did you want to be true at that moment? What the hell is wrong with you?
So it was a small problem – those clothes where they were aren’t something to get angry about. So why was it escalated? Why didn’t you stop? Yes, apparently you thought you were “helping” her see why her getting angry and yelling over something trivial was wrong. You showed her she’s not reasonable, that it’s something you’d fix. You thought you were the reasonable one. You weren’t out of control, or so you say, just because you weren’t waving your arms or shouting? Seems right, innit? Bullshit again. So let’s start again, from the top. Could that be why she kept on going?
The same argument happened before – she made it clear she didn’t want you to put your hangers there. You knew that, even though you might have forgotten it. She didn’t. You believed it was a small issue – you’re right. It was a small issue. But you handled it like it wasn’t. She berated you for where you put those things, you growled because you thought that’s not something important, even though for her, it was. You wanted to point out to her something else is wrong, and such a small issue doesn’t merit such a big outburst. You were calm. You were rational. But you still let it escalate. It doesn’t matter who was right then, what it matters is you didn’t think it enough, it happened before exactly like this – what the hell did you expect then, different results? She may be stressed about her past or coming week – her job is odd, new and dangerous and you know that, they don’t issue emergency warning lights to non-police vehicles because they’re so safe or they won’t end up using them. She doesn’t get enough sleep, she wakes up at 3am and she can’t bloody sleep no more – is that a warning sign? You need a neon billboard or something to tell you “hey putz, danger”? She might have enough of your bullshit for some time, this here just topped it off. Or she’s angry for something but has no power over it, so she’s taking it out on you. That’s not important. She probably has reasons for blowing it up. Or not. She could use improving. Or not. But that’s her problem – you’re supposed to provide advice when she asks you, help when she needs it and a shoulder to cry on. Nothing more, nothing less. She’s not you. She exists, not really because of and sometimes in spite of you. Trust her. Trust in her judgment. You’re not supposed to solve her problems for her. She’s more than capable to make decisions and you ain’t helping. This is about you. Yep, you. To dissect what you did wrong – because obviously you did something wrong. Or the couch wouldn’t still be warm.
Let’s start looking at the big picture: you two sometimes fight, once or twice a week, on average. Some arguments are heated, most aren’t. You usually either fight in the morning or in the evening. Why? Let’s disregard the fact it’s a time when you’re both in the same room – that doesn’t require a fix, that’d require a lawyer. Think of it as something that can and should be improved, mended. Can it? What’s wrong with this picture? A part of the answer could be provided by her – she admits she’s more tense. Another part, even though you might not recognize it, could be because of you. You’re trying to be better, but are you really? Sometimes you’re seen as agitated by those around you, but you say you’re calm. Are you? Are you really calm when fights start? If she says she won’t stop, why aren’t you stopping? What is preventing you from disengaging from the conversation, if you know her problem is being stubborn. Why are you stubborn?
You say you’re standing up for yourself more.. Yet the blowing out of proportion comes only when you’re also like a pit-bull. Well, something’s not what it seems, so then, are you asking the right questions? Are you really using cause-effect properly? Reframe it, please. What do you want to be true? You want to be valuable, to be perceived that way? Interesting, you said perceived. You think you’re a fraud then? You act that way because you think your behavior will change how you think, in time. You’re right, but how did you choose that way of acting? What do you really want to be true?
Ok, if she has a problem unrelated to you – then it’s her decision and her choice – stop being so damn arrogant. If she needs your help, she’ll ask for it. Otherwise take a good look at what you’re doing – it’s not helping. Trust her to make the right decision and stay out of the way. It’s a small problem with an easy fix – put the damn hangers somewhere else. It’s not rocket science. Suck it, von Braun. If it’s small, you won’t mind an extra bit of attention or the extra 30 seconds it takes to find another place to put them.
If the problem is related to you, well now, start those hamsters on their wheels. What did you do, moron? Did you ignore her? Did you not help her? Did you intrude on her me-time? Oh, you did. You poor thing, you have the chutzpah to think she was to blame? Let’s put it in another form (even though it might not be your final form, heh) – either her problem’s not related to you, in which case you do nothing but be around her and show support, or her problem is with you because you’re not around her to show support. Eh? So why not do that? Unplug the damn computer, leave the graphs and crap and the games, and make her dinner. Take the kid to the park, let her relax. Send her shoe shopping.
Another thing, if the problem is small, why let it escalate? You’ve gone done the deed now, heads up, man up and face the music. If you could do it over again, what would you change about it? How would you do it? There will be a next time. Don’t do it this way again. Don’t make the same mistake again. What have you learned? No, there’s no “I’m an idiot” answer on the answer list. But there’s a “buy her some chocolate and learn to iron, dummy!” box you can check instead.
Arguing once or twice a week – is it normal? Compared to what? What is normal anyway? Are those really arguments or is there something else hiding behind them, the real reason for the argument?
Question – Do you want to believe she’s wrong about it? Do you want to believe she’s wrong so you can be right? Do you want that to be true? Why?