17 October 2005


I cracked.

The evil, psychotic house guest has left.

He was perfect at (constantly) making sure you didn't mind this or that, so long as you were there in the same room, to ask. As to getting up in the middle of the night to help himself - no problem. Same again if only the kids were about - they didn't count.

He left in a huff, because I took him mumbling in his offhand, conceited fashion, from the comfort of my computer station where he was ensconced, about me being educationally subnormal; f*cking certifiable etc etc, (just as he has for a week and a half) until I lost it and crashed the computer by pulling the electricity fuse.

All I wanted was an apology. I wanted him to snap out of it, hear himself, and readjust his behaviour. What I got instead was loads and loads more smarmy, laughing abuse and he even took care to steal the expensive bottle of wine our son had bought just this weekend for my husband's birthday present, as he left. He did it deliberately - having spent two weeks scoffing exotic foods in front of us all, several times a day (boy does he eat) in preference to our budget family diet, he knew damn well we hadn't seen the inside of a £7 bottle of wine for a year or so and were saving this for a special occasion. He took it just to be smug, the r-hole.

He is kind of family and I feel kind of responsible for him, but he is definitively unwell. This makes it worse because his turns of phrase are so abusive that he has no friends left - most of them end up threatening to sue him, and I feel like tail end charlie - desperately worried he will end up on the streets, and guilty as hell towards his poor mother.

I am trying to work out who I loathe the most just now - me or him. I wanted to hang on in there, I just haven't got what it takes. Its bizarre, huh, to cry most of the time someone that 'unusual' is in my house, only to cry more out of similar frustration when they have stormed out.

Half of me wishes I had just taken his offensive behaviour, which would have involved a lot less respect or hope for him and a clearer image of him as a mental patient who can't help it. The other half of me wishes I had kicked his travel bag with all my strength, to smash that bottle into his clothes and books. Thank God the kids weren't here.

Sod it.


ella m. said...

You are not a failure. You made an honest effort to tolerate this behavior, but even the kindest of people has limits.

He is obviously in need of serious professional help, far beyond what friends and family can provide and perhaps all of you can convince him to get it?

doris said...

No matter what, there are boundaries of respect. He showed no respect and you did the right thing.

Sounds awful and very tiring and costly to have this person as a house guest. The b*st*rd!

((Hugs to you))

Cheryl said...

Believe me, I hung in there until I flipped, but once I did I am not so sure I ended up with many more shreds of self respect than he deserves. I finally, within boundaries, let him have it. I failed myself.
The fact that however low I stooped, he went further, doesn't make me feel any prettier in this. Whats worse is I think he saw it as a game, that getting me to sink to nearly his level was a joy to him, a sense of control, so in one way I let him win. It seems its all about derision.
Its been a bad day.

Thanks for your support, you two

Ally said...

I agree with both Doris and Ella. I also think that it's important to remember that one DOES have limits. You can't give more than you have. [hugs]

Ms Mac said...

Yes, yes! I am in firm agreement with previous commenters. Just because someone has an illness does not give them free reign to abuse your hospitality and/or personal kindness. he has to take responsibility for himself and his behaviour and with any luck he will one day try to make amends.

If you are a stronger woman than I you will forgive him but learn from your previous experience!

MissMeliss said...

As much as we are all trained to be good hosts, it's important also to be a good guest. He didn't meet his part of the bargain, and your anger is completely justified.

zilla said...

I agree with everyone, but also completely understand your disappointment in yourself, because I would feel that way, too. In fact, I have felt that way -- like it's all a game and the abuser's goal is to break my composure.

Cheryl, we have to forgive ourselves. We can't be perfect all of the time.

Frankly, in this situation, I think the abuser deserved the boot.

bart said...

this isn't failure, it's reality when you just can't survive the illusion of trying to take on more than you can handle...

you have limits, we all do and the trick of life is finding them and sticking to them (yep, I've had to discover them the hard way, but i've learned :D )

in the end, if you ignore yourself to try to please somebody else, they'll ignore you just as hard...

keep well and take care ;-)

fineartist said...

Wise words of wisdom in these here comments.

I only have this to add, YOUR home is YOUR sanctuary. If something in your home is disrupting your safe place, then OUT it or he/she goes.

Also, you already have four children, you certainly don’t need a forty year old oaf who behaves like a ten year old with all of his sarcasm, digs and immature bull sh…to contend with.

I am so glad you have seen the back of his hind end, and I hope that the door didn’t hit him in the arse when he left. Good riddance to the destruction of your safe place. Sounds like a win/win situation to me, he thinks he won something, and you have your refuge back. Hugs you proper, Lori

fineartist said...

Also, I still haven't figured out how to do the link thing. Darn it.

And no pop up this time. Go figure, but good deal, yes?

jane said...

I think you did exactly the right thing, Cheryl. He has to know, one way or another, that you can't abuse people. Had you let him stay I'd be as angry as hell with you. I'm glad that you stood your ground. Mental illness isn't an excuse, it's treatable & I'm sure he has been informed of numbers to call for help; he just doesn't want to.
Look at it this way, you're seriously helping him get closer to seeking a healthy life.