A bit behind schedule, but M blew up last night. What was it this time? He claims he asked me a simple question about tuning the cello (it’s a long story.) He said that he feels intimidated by the instrument and has handed her off to me in the past for tuning. Fine and dandy. His question* was whether or not it could be tuned lower or the strings changed to make the sound deeper as that is the sound he loves the most.
Seems pretty simple, right? I looked online to see what the next string down would be (sorry if this seems unrelated, but it will make sense in a minute) and how much it would cost, and what others might have done, you know, a bit of “independent research**” before discussing options. While I did this he was madly typing on his computer and claims he did not hear any of my comments to him about strings and tuning.***
A few minutes later he was playing along with YouTube videos and having a great time. He asked what the order was for tuning and I reached down to demonstrate, which was the wrong thing to do. He had no intention of re-tuning the instrument, or of stopping his playing. He just wanted a “one sentence explanation” of the procedure. Of course, after our discussion of just a few minutes earlier (which he had heard and participated in, despite his denials) I had a very different impression of what he wanted and he was off!
He thrust the cello at me (which he denied ten minutes later) and stomped from the room (again, he denies that he was stomping) to gather up some paperwork and bring back to his desk to sort. So here I am left with the cello in my hands, not knowing what he wants, but knowing very clearly that he’s pissed off and I’m about to get reamed.
After much snapping on his part (again denied minutes later) I finally managed to answer his original question, which was, “What is the order of turning these knobs to change the pitch of the strings?” At no time did he actually say that, but he insists that he did, and his insistence got more and more vehement as the lecture went on. That’s right – I was treated to a 1.5 hour lecture on how I never answer his questions, how I always answer some other question that I decide in my fantasy mind to answer.
He insists that I am stubborn and evasive and not “normal,” so he has to correct me and it wears him down. The fact that he has to drag something so stupid out to such lengths goes to show how abusive he is.
It can’t be a tactic that he uses to beat me down – he’s not that kind of person, he says.
It’s not a verbal trap, creating another excuse to yell at me – that’s my paranoia talking, he says.
It’s not a set up that leads to one more chance for him to go on and on and lecture me about the way I try to manipulate him and destroy our relationship – that was some other guy and he is tired of paying the price for all the men I should be over by now.
He claims that he has been trying very hard to “keep his mouth shut” because he never knows what might “set me off.” Whatever.
The truth is that he says hurtful things in order to get a reaction out of me and “open a dialogue” so that he can let me know (yet again) how deficient I am, so he can force me to accept the blame for his own lack of control.
His condescending tone and little barbs make me hate him.
More of the same this morning after a nearly sleepless night (he snored all night, but claims that he didn’t sleep a bit. Wish I had recorded that!) He wants me to “accept the blame” for being difficult, evasive and manipulative. He wants me to acknowledge that I have a temper that is set off by he doesn’t even know what and he is the innocent victim, just doing what he can to support me and keep the house in good order so that I can sit down and relax when I get home from work (WTF?!?)
When I state in plain English something like, “when you snap at me it hurts my feelings and causes me to freeze up and I can’t go on with the conversation,” he claims not to know what I’m talking about. When pressed, he will tell me that I MAKE him snap at me when I don’t answer his questions. I FORCE him to raise his voice to make his opinion understood. My feelings are brushed aside and it’s all about him once more. As always. He says that I should get a grip and be able to defend myself. I don’t want to be at war.
I left for work in tears, no tea, no breakfast, exhausted by the effort to try to make sense of this crazy person in my life. The fact is, it makes no sense at all. There is no purpose for his bullshit but to make me miserable. It is deliberate, I’m convinced of it, and he has no desire to change a thing. Really, why should he change? There are a million other women out there who would appreciate his love and support, who would value him as I do not. Good luck, Pal!
This is so sad and pointless.
UPDATE: He just showed up at the shop with a sandwich from Subway. Asked for a knife to cut it in half to share with me. The gesture is a nice one, but here’s where the true point shows – in all the years he has known me I only order one kind of sandwhich at ANY sub place, and that is ham and cheese on wheat bread. Add tomatoes and lettuce, a bit of oil, and that is it. The sandwich he brought? Some sort of turkey breast (heated) with cheese, tomato, lettuce and bell peppers (which I NEVER eat.) No mayo, thank all that’s holy, but nothing like what he knows I would have ordered. Is this another message? Maybe he really does want me to spice up my palate? The sandwich is really for him (what about our money troubles?) and he was driving by and had a guilt attack? Is it poisoned? Were the situation reversed, I would have delivered exactly what he likes the most – a Club with everything, lots of mayo, not heated, not toasted. And he says I don’t know him. Asshole.
* As I remember it, but my memory can’t be trusted, according to M – I live in a fantasy of my own making where no one else is allowed. Yeah, WTF?!?
** One of M’s favorite terms. It means that whatever question I’ve asked is too simple for him to bother answering and that I need to have at least an elementary grasp of the subject before he will deign to speak about it. Let me do some “independent research” to back up my opinion about something he disagrees with and then it becomes “a weapon to beat [him] with” – his words about the whole Al Gore thing. Yet another Double Standard.
*** Whenever I’m at my computer, especially if I am working, he will talk to me, very quietly, asking questions or making comments about nothing that matters to me at the moment, just out of my range of hearing. He does it deliberately to make me turn around and ask him to repeat himself, which he hates to do. He then berates me for “being absent” and not paying attention to him.