There Is A Land Called Passive Aggressia, And I Am Their Queen
Posted on February 27th, 2010 in Emotional Angst, Featured, Mating And Relating, Polyamory
It has taken a number of days for the household to recover from my mother’s visit, but I think things are pretty much back to the way we like them around here.
She and I had ONE rather explosive argument, that began with the laundry and ended with our respective shortcomings as participants in this parent/child relationship. There were tears. Indeed, I think she cried for over an hour. When the dust settled we hugged and the visit proceeded quite well until her departure.
Before, during, and after her visit I experienced varying levels of anxiety. Unfortunately a lot of that ended up being taken out unfairly on Aiden. In his opinion, it seemed as though even the slightest annoyance became the end of the world. Insignificant things, that I would normally dismiss easily, instead led to heated arguments. We even had it out in Wal-Mart one evening. How trailer park is that?
He isn’t perfect, mind you. Miscommunication is a tough thing, and there are times when what Aiden thinks or means to say, and what actually comes out of his mouth, are two different things. Subtlety is often lost on me, because I tend to take things too literally, and so while he was trying to communicate one thing, I was hearing something totally different, but neither of us realized that it was happening, and so there was no clarification.
I think an important exercise for us going forward is to practice “What I hear you saying is…” and then repeating back what we heard. You would be surprised at how frequently what is intended and what is actually heard are two vastly different things.
It seemed like for days we went around and around the same topic, him trying to do what he thought I wanted, me being so totally absorbed in feeling pissed off and hurt that I missed his efforts completely. Then he got angry because I had been beating him over the head all week with the SAME FREAKIN ISSUE, which only served to make me even MORE angry, until it all came to a head last night, when we actually had time together to really talk about what was going on.
After we talked I felt only marginally better, until I realized that I was holding onto being angry with him. I am so bad for that, and I want to learn to let go. Even now, when I think about the things that occurred that made me angry, I can feel that acidic sensation somewhere in my guts. It’s like my brain hasn’t bothered to inform my emotions that we’ve worked it out, and some part of me is still letting the hurt fester in there. It’s significantly lessened, but still it is in there, and if I indulge it, I am sure I can find all sorts of things to be angry about, but what purpose does that serve?
It feels like that is what I have been doing all week. One specific thing had been bothering me for a while, but instead of really addressing it, I just let it sit there, and I fed it, and I looked for things that Aiden was doing wrong so that I could justify being upset with him, and I let it blind me completely to the fact that he was really trying to make me happy.
Why do I do that? It feels so stupid when I look at it objectively. I just wanted to stay pissed off it seems, maybe because then I had an outlet for the feelings I have towards my mother. Or for whatever other things have been ruffling my feathers lately.
I’m not saying that none of my emotions were justified. I think that my initial hurt was understandable, because at the center of all this angst is a relationship issue that we are dealing with, but by the time I brought it to Aiden’s attention and he started trying to fix it, I was already wrapped up in my angry little cocoon. I left it go too long, and I stubbornly refused to really see things from his perspective, because then I would have to admit that I was being an unreasonable jackass.
Unfortunately, when I am hurting, my first reaction is to lash out at the other person. I hurt Aiden’s feelings, more than once, and pushed him into a corner until he finally got angry. I think I was sort of gunning for that, because if I pissed him off, and he fought back, then I could justify unloading on him.
I know, I throw up in my mouth a little just writing it.
Aiden’s anger, however, is fleeting. He gets over things in a matter of minutes, and so fighting with him wasn’t particularly satisfying.
So we ended up talking into the wee hours of this morning. He pointed out to me all of the ways that he has been attempting to improve the situation. I had missed pretty much all of them, because I was upset, and because sometimes Aiden isn’t exactly as direct as he could be. By the end I think we had worked out our communication issues, and hopefully we can avoid a repeat performance down the road.
Now I just need to really let go of feeling slighted. When you carry on being angry for such an extended period of time, it can take a while to release all of that negativity, but I am working on it.
At least my mum won’t be back until the fall