Living With The “Small Stuff”

They say “Don’t sweat the small stuff” but often times it’s the small stuff in relationships that finally brings it to an end. Somebody left the cap off the toothpaste, etc. When you’re living with a passive aggressive the small stuff is everyday and it’s a constant battle, at least that’s how it is at our house. With the BF out of work for a few weeks now, it’s even more noticeable.

I’m starting to get a complex about the TV. Actually it’s been coming on for some time. He’s a sports freak. If there isn’t professional sports on he’ll watch little league or anything else he can find. Sometimes I just get “sportsed out”. I go in the kitchen to start dinner or out in the other room to watch something else (this is usually during prime time). For about a year now, I guess when I leave the room he changes the channel to some show or whatever, because when I walk back in the room, he turns the channel back to whatever sports he was watching. I mentioned this to him once or twice. At certain times it’s like he turns it back to sports real quick as a way of keeping me out of the room. He said he didn’t realize he was doing that, but it continued. Now whenever I walk in the room and he switches the channel I ask him “what were you watching?”

When a behavior is consistent and it bugs me, I don’t know how else to handle it except for head on. At least then he knows that I’m aware of what he’s doing. Sometimes it works and he changes the behavior to some other way of showing resistance or resentment, sometimes it doesn’t.

I belong to Netflix, you know, like Blockbuster by mail. I usually try to be considerate and I pick a movie I would like and then pick one I’m pretty sure he would like. He’ll do anything to keep from watching a movie I ordered. Last night he mentioned a movie that was on TV that didn’t sound particularly interesting so I mentioned the movies I had from Netflix. I forget what we ended up watching, but it wasn’t a movie. I know he likes movies, because when I come home from running errands or something, he’ll be totally engrossed in one. He’s seen all the Harry Potters and all the Pirates of the Carribeans, just as long as it’s not one I’ve special ordered. I’ve gotten now where after having them for a couple of months, I just watch them myself so I can get them back to Netflix.

He’s told me before that he hates it when people use hamburger instead of pork sausage in spaghetti sauce. The other night I made spaghetti. I told him it was mostly pork because I didn’t have as much hamburger as I thought (I usually do a combo). He never touched it.

His new thing is putting dishes in the dishwasher backwards. He doesn’t do any dishes to start with, but I do ask that everyone rinse their own dish and put it in the dishwasher. I’ve noticed for the last month his bowls go in backwards instead of inline. Small thing I admit, but wth? This guy’s 60 yrs. old. He says he didn’t know there was a “backwards”.

I’m going to have to find a release somewhere. He’s home all the time now. I used to have a comedy nite once a week when I had the bar. It’s true, laughter is the best medicine. Maybe it’s time I went and saw some of my funny friends. LOL.

4 Responses

  1. I was thinking about this… maybe he switches back to his main channel because he’s afraid you might get drawn into the other thing he was looking at, when he wasn’t meaning to stay there… if he switches back just as you’re getting interested, he would feel guilty, so perhaps he switches away before you even see what it was.

    It drives me mad watching someone channel hop; I’ll have to learn to pick up a book and ignore it. 🙂

  2. Thanks diddums for another (and a little nicer) point of view to the problem. I would go along with that being a possibility, but this is usually when I’m in the middle of fixing dinner, so he knows I’m in and out.

    Perhaps I am being a little to harsh. It just seems so odd to me, especially after mentioning it to him. I’m sure it’s something innocent. Maybe I’m getting to jagged. LOL

  3. I know what you mean about the movies you chose…

    In the past when I suggested options to my sister (for instance if she was choosing something to buy, and we were looking round the shops)… I felt that she would go out of her way to say “nah.” Then Mum would pick up the same thing I’d suggested 5 minutes before, rush up to her looking enthusiastic and say “this is perfect, isn’t it?” and my sister would say “hmm… yes, not bad!” then buy it.

    I suppose there are all sorts of reasons why she might do that, including needing time to think about what I’ve just shown her, but I stopped suggesting things to her after getting the feeling that maybe she only rejected stuff because it was me who suggested them!

    I don’t think she’s quite as bad now as she used to be; more willing to listen — but I still hold back (or get Mum to suggest things for me).

  4. Interesting behavior.

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