Passive Aggressive House Hunting

House For Sale

House For Sale

As many of you know that have been with me for a little while, we are in the process of hunting for a new place to live. Boy, what a pain in the a**. LOL. We have to have something on a bottom floor because we have my mother with us who uses a walker. We need a place that allows pets (I have 2 cats, the dogsitter took the dog, which is ok) and allows smokers. I would prefer to buy because 1) you can’t write rent off on your taxes 2) I don’t really like dealing with rent raises, landlords, people living on top or below me. I want to deal directly with the owner of the home or duplex or whatever, vs. dealing with a Realtor because they are usually very closed minded. (I am one and I say that. LOL).

One day while discussing places with the passive aggressive BF, he said if we got an apartment we would have to get rid of some stuff. He had been attracted to this mobile home that had a small back yard area. I’m thinking, ok so we’ll just get rid of whatever equipment we kept for a yard. No big deal. Today I learned there’s much more to it than that.

What we actually need is a garage. We didn’t keep anything to do yard work. We need a place for his two workbenches and his 6 foot tall tool chest, which is fine. He built the workbenches from scratch, did a really good job on them, I just didn’t realize that was his priority on what kind of place we needed to live in. When did I find this out? When I met a dear lady over the phone that just about had us moved into a downstairs apartment, accepted my cats, and had me lined up to be assistant manager whenever she left on vacation. It sounded great! I thought he just wanted some kind of a little yard. This had a back patio. It was when I hung up after telling this lady we would be by this afternoon to look at the place that I finally learned where he was coming from.

We need a garage which makes our choices a little less. We need either a house or a duplex, or a condo on a ground floor that has a garage. I think I’m still going to look at this place as the lady said when I called her back to say we wouldn’t be coming after all, that the apartment was 1100 sq. ft. If the patio goes all the way across the back, it may be big enough for his stuff.

What I really was fascinated by while house hunting with the passive aggressive BF was the fact that he swears he will keep up the yard if we get a house. Now this is coming from the same man that almost cost us $2500.00 in fines from code enforcement in our old house for letting the outside go to “blight”. I found myself asking for a second time after looking at a house for rent where the landlord was angry that the last tenants didn’t keep up the yard, “Are you sure you’re going to do the yard work?”

“Oh yeah, yeah” he says without batting an eye.

Isn’t this one of the very things that passive aggressives are so good at? After 10 years with this man am I still so naive I’m going to fall for that? Why yes I am. If he doesn’t keep up with the yard, he will hear about how he promised until the cows come home! What do you think? Is this just another empty promise? I guess all I can do is keep the number of a good gardener handy, just in case. When you live with a passive aggressive for so long, I’m afraid you become a little cynical. LOL

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8 Responses

  1. Just a quick note to say hello. It does sound like you are moving forward which is always a good thing if only slowly. I am still very thankful for your helpful webpage. Everything I learned about PA behavior helped me to change and readjust my approach to relating to my son. The more I tried to fix things for him the more he undermined himself and his success. After my very quick education on PA behavior I immediately backed off in every way. I have to check myself sometimes when we talk so I don’t dominate our conversations trying to correct some misconceptions he has adopted from his “conspiratorial, anti-everything” friends. I can see that he is moving his life forward on his own terms. I just am staying very non-judgemental and unopinionated. I don’t know that I would have ever backed off if I hadn’t learned about PAs. I keep you in my thoughts and hope you are settled in your new home soon.

    • Hi PA’s Mom- So good to hear from you! I’m so glad things are working out better between you and your son. That’s great news. I know it’s hard not to try to correct their thinking about things since we have so many years on them, but it sounds like you’re doing a great job. I remember what I was like at that age. My poor parents couldn’t tell me anything. LOL. I was so sure I had all the answers and for me everything was different than it was for them so what could they possibly know? Of course growing up in the ’60’s when you absolutely never trusted anyone over 30 probably didn’t help either.

      Even if you don’t agree with his “conspiratorial” theories, at least he’s thinking about things that are going on, and if he’s working and making his own way, you can’t hardly ask for more. I’m so happy for you that you took that first step weeks ago. Thank you also for the kind words as I was hoping when I started this blog that it would help not only me, but so many others that don’t realize passive aggressiveness is a real problem.

      Please keep in touch. How are things going with you and his father now that all the kids are out on their own? What are your plans now for your relationship there? You take care of yourself and God Bless.

  2. I really haven’t spoken with his father. There’s not any chance that I would rekindle a relationship. He just taxes me physically and mentally. He’s not a bad person, but he made a decision not to grow as a person and I made a decision to never stop growing so we grew apart. I think I would much rather live a life alone than with someone that I have nothing in common with. I spent so much time organizing the home. The things that were important to me (like a clean, neat home) were not important to him. I got to feeling like everything was on my shoulders. Since I left he really let things go. He had no personal pride or ambition. He worked. He did support his family but he didn’t want to advance. He wanted me to advance instead. I went back to school and got the degree and then the advanced degree. So at this point, being with him felt like carrying a great weight. I think it will be a challenge learning to live alone. But I don’t think I will ever be so lonely that I would want to try to reconcile with him. I am working towards relocating within a year. I plan to move to a community that has a lot of activities. It is close to a college town where my daughter is in school. It is within 2 hours of my older daughter who is married. Right now she is 7 hours away from me. I still work and that keeps me busy. I imagine I will be working for a long time because of nothing in my name in retirement. He has a retirement account, but I have within the last few years started saving for my own retirement. My life feels peaceful even though a bit sad at times. I think that lots of women have gone through children leaving home and somehow have made it through. I don’t think there is anything I can do to avoid going through this transition. So I am ready to roll up my sleeves and tackle it head on. I have made it my goal to prepare for my retirement and I only have five or so years to accomplish this so I should be very busy. I do plan to work more than five years if possible. I don’t know where this economy is headed. I hope it is getting better where you are and that things will be changing for your boyfriend. I hope he feels more optimistic about going back to work when work becomes available. And I do hope you get settled into a home soon. I will keep you posted on my son. I just don’t think I would have been at this point if I had not discovered your blog. Keep posting.

    • PA’s Mom- Thanks for filling me in. It is sort of hard after the last one is gone to get used to the quiet and the freedom, but now you are in a great position to enjoy living on your own terms and doing as you wish. It was sort of hard for me also, but then I got to looking at it from the point of view that, hey, now if I clean something (a room) it will stay clean for a while, or now is the chance to do all those things I didn’t have time for, like putting pics in albums, etc. It really is kind of liberating. LOL. Although I still have the PA boyfriend and the PA mother, which is like still having kids at home.

      Just a short word of warning, if you still have stuff that’s important to you at the house you and your husband shared, you may want to start getting it out of there, maybe a little at a time. If he’s letting things go, and once he gets the clue you aren’t coming back, you just never know what may happen.

      I agree with you about reconciliation. I would much rather live alone than live with someone and still be alone. I’ve noticed the BF and I have drifted even farther apart than we were through all of this. Time will tell. Once again, thank you for the encouraging words. It helps.

      • I think he has a pretty good idea that I am not coming back. When I moved away for “work” about 3 years ago, I lived in a small studio apartment with my daughter. We would go home on weekends. It was so hard because when I got there, I spent the weekend cleaning. The dishes were not done, laundry was stacked, the bathrooms dirty. It was my PA son’s next to last year at school. I didn’t want to make him change schools. In retrospect, I think he felt abandoned. It was my goal to get him as soon as he graduated from high school and get him in a local college. Eventually, I was able to get a house. At that time I brought the things that I felt were the most important to me here. I felt so relieved not to have to go to his house and clean anymore. He is a borderline hoarder as well. I spent so much time trying to organize the things he tried to hang onto “just in case”. That trait more than anything drove me away. I used to worry that both my husband and son would burn up in a fire because of the clutter. I hadn’t thought of it before, but all things considered, I am glad my son has left and is on his own just for his safety. I feel like I am getting both my personal and financial house in order for the first time in 10 years. I have been married for 34 years. I think I emotionally left him about 13 years ago. I just remember that moment in time that I didn’t feel like trying anymore. He wanted my success more than he wanted his own. Wow you mean I get to clean house, take care of the kids, manage the finances, and be the principal breadwinner? What an honor. He has job skills that are in demand and he is paid well for what he does. But I just felt like we weren’t moving ahead as a team. I think he primarily is a disorganized person probably an ADD. He just never seemed to get anything accomplished. It could be some PA, but I think primarily ADD. My son on the otherhand definitely turned into a PA. I think a lot of the financial stress that we went through during my education sealed the deal. How frustrating to have bills that we just couldn’t pay. We had never been in that situation before. We didn’t live our lives like that. But that all changed in a flash. As I mentioned it has taken awhile, but I am getting those debts paid. As it has ended up, I shouldered the majority of the debt primarily my student loans. Right now he is free and clear. He would provide if asked, but I don’t ask. I am doing well at the moment. He got what he wanted. I am successful now! I don’t know how good I will be at doing the things I have always wanted to do because all I really wanted to do was be a mom and have a family. But I think I will be ok. I enjoy my work. As mentioned, when I move I will be moving to an area that will offer a lot of opportunities for outside hobbies and activities. I am hopeful that the momentary stress in your life is responsible for the distance you feel from your BF. I hope when you are settled that you are able to return to the positive things that brought you together in the first place. Thanks for listening.

        • PA’s Mom- Thank you. Boy, 34 years is a lifetime isn’t it? It’s amazing how the years fly by. I find it hard to believe I’ve been in my situation for 10. So many women I meet here are long timers. Good luck and have fun where you can find it.

          • I thought about my last post about all that was wrong with him, but conveniently avoided what may have brought me into the situation. I too think I was a controlling person. Isn’t it easy to find someone who wants to be controlled? I know I just wanted a happy family as I grew up without a very good family life and then lost my parents before I could reconcile who they were with what I became. No sisters, no brothers. No extended family. I’m sure my lack of self-esteem led me into a relationship where the other person essentially was very passive. I tried to give my own children the happy childhood I never had. For the most part I was successful until the end. Until about 13 years ago, it was fine. I think we had the children in common. As they grew and left (all 5) I think our commonality was gone. I suppose another way to think of his encouraging me to pursue a career is that he was very supportive. I just wanted to say I’m not a perfect person and I am sure I contributed to whatever happened. I am trying to understand the controlling part of myself. Maybe a desparate need to have stability in my life that was lacking from childhood. I don’t know. But I am trying not to be a controlling parent.

          • PA’s Mom- Sorry this took so long.

            It’s not unusual at all for a couple to find once the kids are gone they have nothing left to talk about, or nothing left in common. So many years go devoted basically to the children. I am glad these days to see them encouraging a “date nite” once a week, or something similar to try and keep couples in touch with each other. It’s also amazing how many people split when one or both retire.

            I don’t think any of us thinks we are perfect. I just think we all have the basic right to feel loved and appreciated. It sounds like you had to grow up strong, and I know with being the oldest myself, sometimes our strength can be a little overpowering. Maybe that’s why I’m with my passive passive aggressive BF. I just know he was so different than any one I had been with. Like they say “better still is not necessarily good”. Thank God we can always choose to learn by our mistakes. LOL.

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