M will be leaving tomorrow afternoon for five days. He is ramping up in preparation.
Thursday night when I got home from work he had put some potatoes in the oven for dinner. It was up to me to finish the meal however I wished. Or that was what was implied as he never did say anything about the oven being on or what was in there. This is typical. No matter what I decided to do he would have had “advice” about the meal, or raised objections, or told me that he had other plans once I was finishing the meal.
After eating (no thanks from him. As usual.) we were in the computer room and he started harassing me about an add-on I found for his web browser. He questioned if it was “the best” and if I had “fully tested” the options. I saw red, but kept my calm. I told him that I had no idea if it was the best, nor had I tested all the options as I stopped when I found something that works because he was in a tearing hurry and he was welcome to test all the options and/or search for a better add-on himself. I then left the room.
I think he was surprised that I did not jump into defense mode and try to explain myself. It’s my new strategy – leave the room when he starts in on his bullshit.
Last night was more of the same. I got home, the dog was all over me after being in her room all day “ignoring” M, and he made several comments about that, saying that I am “the center of our universe! Nothing is worthwhile until [I] get home! Aren’t [I] thrilled that everyone relies on me so completely?” Whatever.
I made dinner and M tried to engage me in conversation, but everything that he said was mildly confrontational so I answered minimally and refused to debate. He slammed out of the room and threw himself down on the bed. Big Sigh.
I went in and asked him if he was going to bed at that early hour. “No, it’s just so lonely out there!” I lay there for a few minutes to see if anything else would be forthcoming and when he said nothing to me (but did talk to the dog) I left the room and read a book on the couch until it was time to walk the dog. M had fallen asleep by that time, the smell of whiskey strong on his breath. He has been drinking much more than usual, but mostly before I get home from work. I don’t know how he can think I don’t notice, as I am the one to go to the liquor store. Maybe he wants me to notice and confront him about it so he can project, deny and deflect his problems onto me. I’m not taking the bait, thankyouverymuch!
This morning I’m the best thing that’s ever happened to him. He only wants to spend time with me. He is going to miss me So Much when he’s gone, blah, blah, blah.
I now recognize this for what it is – he is trying to soften me up before he leaves, make me believe that everything is fine between us. It’s a lie. He will expect me to call him, e-mail him, tell him that I love him and miss him while he’s gone. When he doesn’t get the response he wants, he will lay a guilt trip on me and expect me to apologize and fall all over myself to make amends.
Adults don’t treat each other this way.
He is going to a friend’s house where he does not have cell phone coverage. He will be working outside until dark and then having a meal with his friends who don’t get phone calls in the evening. I have called there on a couple of occasions and it’s clear that they were a little irritated about that – but who knows what M has been telling them about me. M is a (generally) thoughtful guest and is perfectly capable of using their phone after they go to bed (they both work, so they go to sleep early) without disturbing them. The way he insists that I make contact is nothing but a power play to keep me off balance and constantly thinking about him.
I’m not going to play this time – I will say, “call me,” as he, or I (he hasn’t said what time he’s leaving and I work tomorrow) leave and that will be it. Let him do as he pleases. I will be busy with a huge list of Things to Do While M is Out of Town 🙂