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11:32 a.m. - 2012-02-29
The Middle Is Usually The Best Part

I don't apologize easily. It's not the being wrong part I mind so much, truly, it's the knowledge it takes a hella lot to hack me off in the first place. Usually by the time I blow my stack I've eaten yards and yards of shit from someone. Cut that person miles of slack. Been as bendy as I could be and did my best to accept everyone has their own agenda and opinions. So when I do finally blow a gasket it feels justified. A Popeye-ish, "I've had all I can stands and I can't stands no more!" sort of deal. To have to backtrack from that (perfectly justified) lowering the boom on someone and cough up an apology, well, it hurts. Feels like since I've sucked it up and dealt with stinking mounds of their crap and didn't call them on any of it that the least they can do is cut me some slack over my singular and rare loss of composure.

What I actually need to do is speak up more often and not wait until I'm a seething volcano of frustration and anger. If I stuck up for myself regularly and acclimated others to the idea of an LA who isn't always Nice it'd be easier on everyone, including me.

I need to get over my distaste for conflict. In my teens and twenties I loved a good debate. Somewhere along the way I lost my appetite for vigorous exchange and got tired. It became easier to just let stuff go. Whatever. Sure, the Earth is flat. A diet pill will convert fat into muscle. If you're in that much of a hurry, please, go ahead and cut the line, jump out at the 4-way stop, cut me off at the light. Whatever. Fine, uh huh, Jesus was a Republican. Your parents' 50th anniversary is rendered moot because George Takei married a guy. Sure, sure. Just please take your strident dumb ass out of my life and go shout elsewhere.

I don't know. Everything has gotten so mean. So ugly. There's no real exchange of ideas anymore, just a lot of nonsensical screaming. The bullies have won. The pig ignorant angry people wore me out in the political arena. And it's spilled over into my personal life. I'll do and put up with just about anything to avoid a hassle. Until I can't deal anymore. Then I blow. And have to apologize. Which is unfair. To all.

It's no secret that Mick is quite, um, loud in his opinions and feelings. Heart on sleeve, chin jutted, he shoots from the lip. He's a barger and a shouter, but when the dust settles he's more than willing to hear the other side. A decent man, and a kind one, his impulse control is poor but his motives are good. He just wants the ones he loves to be safe and happy. I know this. It's been proven dozens of times. I trust he has my best interests at the front of every decision he makes. It's just his technique that's at issue. Almost all of our fights are about style and execution, not intention. And because Mick is so noisy and so BIG in his initial reactions that I find myself unable to cope.

The hellish crucible of dealing with Aspies for 30 years has burnt the noise right out of me. If you're to get anywhere with an Aspie you have to be quiet and logical and act like emotions have no place in your thinking, otherwise they'll take fiendish delight in denying you. Just because they can. Aspies are the orginal 'Hold a bone just out of the dog's reach' torture masters. They totally get off on getting a rise out of others. It makes them feel masterful. The more they can spin someone out the more they can go on being obstinate and contrary. The kings of passive-aggression.

So. Between my own horror at how imbecilic the public discourse has become, the weariness of futilely ramming my head against the brick wall of the 'know nothing and damn proud of it' crowd, and the scorched earth left behind by my hideous ex-husband I find myself backing away from anything that might lead to conflict. I can't do it. I simply can't. Just the idea of knocking heads with someone makes me weepy and pukey. Even if it's something as benign as deciding where to have dinner. Whatever. Have it your way. Please, please, please don't make a deal of it. Tell me what you want and I'll be there, okay?

Unfortunately this leads to spoilage on others' parts, they get very used to the doormat accommodating LA. And it leaves me to pile up the self-denial and unfulfilled desires until I reach the breaking point and finally explode all over the hapless person (mostly poor Mick) who'd unknowingly put that last straw on the camel's back.

Now that the house is safe and I know my son will be able to graduate from the school he and I have worked so very hard to get him into my task is clear- I must learn some balance. I've set for myself the goal of finding a healthy place where others' needs are considered but aren't taken as set in stone Must DO obligations. I want to be casual and easy if I've a yen for a burger and Mick said something about sushi and...maybe we can compromise with Italian.

On the quest for the middle ground, ~LA

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