"I'm not feeding the dogs or letting them out when we get home. I don't feel like it."
"Really? What if I don't feel like it?"
"Then I guess it won't get done."
"OK. What if I didn't feel like paying the mortgage or buying groceries? What if I didn't feel like having a job anymore?"
It's an infuriating refrain, and it comes up again and again. Tonight was lovely, and we were on our way home from having dinner with family when he pulled out some "I Don't Feel Like It."
I never know quite how to respond to these little tantrums. What makes me angriest about them is that they are proclamations and plans. If he just came in the house and started ignoring the dogs, I'd just let them out because they needed to be let out. It's just what you do. But because he had to make a declaration of how he was letting himself off the hook for being responsible for any of the grown up work around our home, I resented every fucking second of a chore that isn't even very onerous...that is, in fact, something I look forward to doing.
"I always take care of the dogs. It's your turn," is his explanation for how this asinine assertion is anything like reasonable.
First, it's not true. He is home with them all day while I'm at work, so he spends more time with them than me; but he doesn't do a majority of the caretaking. I buy their food, groom them, walk them, talk with them, pet them, and take care of them when they're sick. I take them outside and throw the ball. I bring bones home for them from the grocery store. In spite of him being home with them all day, I'm still doing more than my share.
And second, I'm ALWAYS doing more than my share. That's the world that we're living in right now...it's unfair, and I'm pulling more than my share of the weight. Because I love him, I am willing to pull more than my share of the weight while he is working on this whole recovery business, and it's ok. However, when he indicates in any way that he thinks some little old bullshit that he sometimes does to represent some portion of contribution to our home life is in any way unfair, I kind of want to sew his eyelids to his forehead and make him look at my bank account until he acknowledges the goddamned miracles I've been performing with my pittance of a salary in stretching it to pay our two-person bills.
I just have no idea where this shit comes from. Is it because he was raised by wolves? Is it a manifestation of the disease of addiction and its profound ability to make the addict feel entitled, wronged, and to allow him to lie to himself? Is it just that he's selfish beyond all comprehension? Is it maleness? Is it because his mother didn't spank him? What in hell would possess him to spout some nonsense like that and ruin a perfectly lovely night, a perfectly loving wife, and a perfectly planned evening of tv-watching and bed-cuddling?
And what if everyone in the world only did what they felt like doing? Like right now, I kind of feel like ordering a pizza. I kind of feel like buying a plane ticket to Maui. I never feel like working out, going to work, or going to meetings. I don't feel like supporting him while he finds himself and figures out how to live like grown folks. I bet all of you out there reading this don't really FEEL like reading this...you probably feel like getting massaged of getting fucked or eating pie or sitting in a hot tub. Life doesn't work like that, Mr. Junky, and sometimes we just have to feed our dogs or wash our clothes or clean up after ourselves or go to work. That's how life works. It's unfortunate, but it's real...how did you miss that memo?