I tend to be goal-oriented. Instead of endlessly discussing a problem, how it happened, whose fault it is, on and on, I prefer to just fix the problem and get on with my life. This explains why I have become reluctant to “discuss things” as I got older — if we talk about something Mrs. Fetched did that I don’t like, then she turns around and does it again, I give up trying to talk about it after two or three cycles because talking hasn’t solved the problem.
Problems that don’t get solved often end up in what one could call the ”Resentment Account.” Think of it like a credit card with some weird rules.
- Many resentments have a negative interest rate; if they stop happening, the emotional energy dissipates on its own (kind of like service charges, only these charges do some good). Low-level power games like the Toilet Seat Game are a good example of these.
- Some resentments compound one another. Things that create a pattern build on each other, which is why I might have a totally disproportionate reaction (analogous to a declined purchase on a real credit card) to something that wouldn’t otherwise be a big deal.
Like a real credit card has lots of places it can be used, there are a lot of ways to deposit something in the Resentment Account — and like most of us have limited sources of income, there aren’t all that many ways to pay down the balance. There’s also a credit limit that can be described as “I’ve had all the crap I can take.” Overdrawing the account can result in outbursts leading to screaming matches or my simply leaving for some indeterminate amount of time.
I leave it to the reader to determine why I’m posting something tonight that I’ve had kicking around for a couple of years.