Monday 24 January 2011

Don't call me drama queen for nothin'

When I was little my parents called me 'the drama queen' and I must admit, I do have a certain talent for being dramatic. The events of yesterday weren't quite as earth-shattering as I made out, actually, for Ryota things are quite normal, but you know sometimes you have an argument with somebody and it effects you much much more than them?? And for reasons that are really hard to explain, but something just hits a nerve...? Am I the only drama queen in history to have this problem...?

Basically, we've been having little catty fights here and there all this week, and me being a typical fuckin' woman, have managed to get pissed off, bottle that emotion up and add it to the things that have already got my nose out of joint, so eventually they just explode all over the shop in one swift, tear-filled burst. Why do I do this?? Why do we do this, us women?? If I was like a man and just said what I felt at the time (or punched a wall or two), it wouldn't all build up and my life may be simple. Well, probably not, but surely a bit simpler!?

So yesterday was a build up of a few pesky fights that were getting to me, but it was more the way he dealt with it that made me so upset. So, he went surfing on Saturday, and this was fine, I had to work 3 lessons but MIL was off and could watch Ash, I had a car, all good. But still, Ash kept saying "Daddy work!" out of the blue, and I kept answering with "Hmmmm no, not work, just buggering off to have fun without us" I should stop doing that though, Ash may surprise me and start repeating things like that one day soon! Anyway, when he got back at 4pm (he'd left at 5 in the morning) Ash had already been asleep for about an hour and I was itching to go for a run and buy some ink for the printer, but I waited patiently like a good wifey and did the appropriate "Okaeri-ing" when he got home. Now, if it was me, and Ryota gave me a free day to do whatever I wanted, whether I had a shit day or not, I would just lie and said I had a great time, however, Ryota came in to say what a waste of a day it had been, as they drove 4 hours for the waves to only be....too big. Ummm, so my day was wasted too?? Don't tell me mother fucker!!!
Anyway, I ended up pissing about getting dinner ready, meanwhile, Ryota conked out under the kotatsu, and fair enough he must have been tired. At 5pm I had to leave for the school to do the million and one lessons I had to prepare, and Ash had woken up (and done a massive shit for me to change) anyway so I gently urged Ash to jump on Ryota so I could leave. He opened one eye half-way and groaned "I wannnnaaaa sleep for another half an hoooooouuurrrr!!!!!" I didn't really know what to do with this, what did he want me to do?? Give up my work for his selfish sleep?? Magically conjure a nanny to work for free?? Tie our son to a chair and gag him?? Actually that last one isn't a bad idea...

No, he wanted me to dump Ash with the in-laws and piss off to work to leave him in child and wife free sleepy peace. Now, I'm all for dumping Ash at the in-laws, but not for sleep. For work, or for convenience sometimes but not just because one of us want to sleep. I made this clear with my huffing around the house getting ready (again, really should use words) until he got his lazy arse up to take Ash to the in-laws. That's another thing too, if it's my family, I feel totally guilt free with kid-dumping, but it's different with your in-laws. I think he thinks I'm super comfortable around my in-laws when I'm actually not. I also think he should have just sucked it up and not slept, you do the crime, you pay the time. If I go out on the piss all night, of course if there's ample opportunity I'm going to sleep all day but if I can't then stiff luck, that's just the way life works. Unless you're a pampered Japanese shell boy that is...

But that tiff kind of just evaporated as I was so happy work was over when I got home that I kind of forgot about it. Then, come to yesterday. (Sunday) Ryota had rented movies the night before and started watching one in the morning. I REALLY wanted to go running as I didn't go the day before and felt gross. So, half-way through the movie (that I wasn't watching) I started to get ready for a run, not even thinking about it, but just generally getting ready. Ash was OK at the start of the movie, watching it a bit or playing with his toys, but like most 2 year olds he got restless and was being noisy towards the end half. But, you know, it's a movie, that's why they invented the fuckin' pause button! So Ryota pauses it and starts making pissed off sighs and noises, he then accused me of purposely getting ready to say I wanted him to look after Ash while I ran, he also said that I was selfish and that I should watch Ash while he finished the movie. This is where I really lost it and screamed at him that he was being unfair, and that I watched Ash the whole day on Saturday for him to go surfing. My drama queen instincts had already kicked in and while I was ranting away I started ripping off my running gear and getting Ash dressed, I was determined to take Ash out of the house all day if his time was that fuckin' precious. Grandma came in at that point and was a bit rattled by the half naked gaijin and all the screaming going on as she couldn't understand the English parts thrown in. Ryota then went back and said sorry and said he forgot about the day before, but the damage was already done, I was in hissy fit mode,the apology wasn't very sincere in my opinion, AND I have a feeling he was just back-tracking to get himself out of the shit. He then got really really angry and said: "You go, by yourself, fucking bitch! You're a fucking bitch!"

Now he said this in English, and with pure hatred in his voice. And this is what really rattled me. When we first met, he would never have said something like that to me, so if 3 years marriage=fucking bitch, what will it be in 10 years?? Cunt?? Stupid fat fucking slut??
Experience has taught me that things like this only get worse with time, so I realised that we had a big problem because if he a) Said it in the heat of the moment or b) Really meant it, we were fucked either way. If it was a temper/heat of the moment thing, then it can only get worse from here and if he really meant it, then I'd get a divorce any day over having hatred like that between us.
It made me think very hard about the fact we got married way too young, way too fast, and for all the wrong reasons. Can I put up with this kind of stuff for the next however long??

It was a wake up call that seriously made me ponder things.

Too much pondering... Brain hurting.....

OK, sorry for the heavy rant and the use of the word 'cunt' in there. Back to light reading tomorrow when I'll inform you of an unusual lunch I went to last week with MIL and the local dirt path midget slag.


  1. I'm definitely a you do the crime (go out on the lash or pachinko or whatever) you do the crime person too. AND I HATE it when hub comes home from Pachinko and says what a waste of time and money it was. Give me ichiman and four hours please.

    Can't believe he said that in English. I don't think hub knows how - although he understands it when I tell him to just fuck right off.

    Hope things work themselves out.

    Xxx for you and a slap over the side of the head for Ryota.

  2. Ditto gaijinwife.We have the pachinko senario here as well.Say no more.

    And as for what he said in English,grrrrrrrr.However,he knows what it means but, benefit of the doubt,for a non-native,the words will not have the intensity that us pera-pera lot will bring to them.Just another viewpoint perhaps.

    And have to admit that a tiny,teeny part of me is a wee bit jealous that your DH can curse in English so well;-)

  3. Hey seems a bit rough, but I dunno, maybe you shouldn't take it that seriously? It's a bit different saying ugly stuff in a second language since it doesn't really carry the same emotional weight for the person saying it?

    I can say "cunt" in English without flinching, but calling someone the equivalent in Swedish would be much harder.

    Well, I dunno, you know your husband best, hope things clear up!

  4. Okay, when I read your post yesterday, my first thought was that you found out he was cheating on you -- so I relieved that the problem is only that he's being a clueless shit. I mean, it's still a problem, but there are usually more chances of working on this kind of problem than the other kind.

    Reminds me of the time my older two were babies and I was sick and there was no food in the house, and hub said, "Oh don't worry[and here I thought he was about to offer to pick up food and medicine for me, or at least say he was going to try to get out of work early]....I'LL JUST EAT RAMEN ON MY WAY HOME, so you don't have to cook for me tonight!"

  5. Not fun at all...I agree though that he probably doesn't really know what it means and how strong it comes across. You could maybe start with more "I" statements... I am really angry, instead of "you" statements and see if he follows suit. Hope the situation resolves OK. Nancy Tsurumaki

  6. Get divorced. Why the hell do you put up with it?

  7. He might have actually meant it less BECAUSE he said it in English. I noticed that when using English I am far less sensitive to cussing than in German. And I cuss waaaay more in English than in German just because it's just a word to me, it doesn't hold any emotions/feelings. My English friends kindly pointed this out to me and I try to speak nicer.Maybe it's the same for him. Something he picked up, but it doesn't really register with him how it must sound to you.

  8. Dude, doesn't matter if he felt the intensity of the words or not, that's incredibly uncalled for and unhealthy. But it sounds to me that you both have major communication issues that need to be ironed out. Japan's not exactly the best at psychology-related things, but if it were available and not full of xenophobic anti-gaijin "therapists", you should be signing up.

    You're right that it will get worse. Unless it's addressed and you BOTH work on the issues together. As the first anon said, presenting your feelings as "I feel..." or "When this happened, this is how I felt..." instead of "You always..." etc is a better approach. But, if he seriously can't see how he's being an asshole with no concept of reciprocity, then there may be no way to fix it. From what you write, you do most of the housework. And that may be ingrained in Japanese society, but it doesn't have to be that way. If he's EXPECTING you to behave a certain way because of his upbringing instead of it being based on things you WANT to do, then it's an imbalanced relationship. You guys need to work on that. It seems what you have is unbalanced and the signs are pointing to it continuing to be that way/get worse.

  9. Hi Corinne,

    I actually am a new reader of your blog, and I have to say I agree with the latest anon poster in that you need to work out your communication issues with you & your husband, first & foremost.

    You acknowledged that you're a drama queen (and preface the post by stating so!) and I know in your head you're still trying to rationalize what went wrong with this scuffle, but I'm sure you know that communication issues are big when it comes to the health of one's relationships.

    I do really feel your pain (actually, of course I won't know the full breadth of what you're going through because I'm not a gaijin wife living in a foreign country!), but if it were me in your situation, I'd be stressed as hell...And to your credit, your husband should understand that it's much tougher for YOU living there (physically as well as psychologically) with him than it is for him there as another Japanese man.

    I also agree with some of the other comments regarding the impact (or lack thereof) of a Japanese-born-and-bred person cursing you out than a native English-speaker. Unless, of course, he speaks English very fluently and knows exactly what he means (and only you will know that...). But yep, I agree with your gut feeling on this one...If this isn't nipped in the bud right here & now, it WILL get worse with time...

    Either way Corinne, I love reading your blog because it's really like a breath of fresh air! You tell it like it is and you don't beat around the bush. I just hope that whatever happens, it's for the best for you & Ash.


  10. I'm a long time lurker and love your blog. I know you are not looking for advice, but I will throw in my two cent's worth. We married young, too, at 22, but are approaching out 21st anniversary. We fought as you do for at least the first 10 years (kiddo didn't come until we'd been married 12 years). Eventually you may both find your self argued out -- emotions are a lot more raw when you are young -- at least ours were.
    You sound like a good mother -- tolerant, funny and understanding. You sound like a good wife, too, because of those same qualities. Perhaps something as simple as a "come to Jesus talk" and a schedule could help you. A schedule assures that you both get to do what you must do and some of what you want to do. As for taking advantage of those in-laws, maybe you could schedule 4 one hours blocks with them a week so you can have your run/mental health break/cup of coffee in a snot free environment. Your SIL might appreciate the responsibility. You can always donate those matching satin jogging outfits and his and her beanies to a charity shop.

    You might want to consider pledging to be as kind and thoughtful as you can possibly be to each other at all times. You'd be suprised how killing each other with pleases and thank yous can transform your attitudes towards and about each other. Its also good modelling for your son. I think everyone has communication problems in their marriages, I think it has something to do with intense love, unrealistic expectations, hormones with opposing goals, etc. The extra kindness may facilitate working on those problems.

    Finally, I will ad that it will get better as far as having a toddler is concerned. In a couple of years you or your husband can shut him in the room with you, give him a cookie and say, I am napping now, keep your screeching to a minimum and don't bother me until this alarm goes off unless you are on fire, capiche? If Its a long way off, I know, but a 5 year old can make his own snack. A 7 year old can make his own breakfast and play until you wake up at a human hour. My just turned 9 year old is basically self sufficient except for his inability to earn money or drive. Take care of yourself and your baby. -- an admirer

  11. God, this has taken on a life of it's own. I imagine Ryota's words were equivalent to me saying 'aho jyaneeeka baka' to hub during one particularly heated debate - although when I am really angry at him I use English. あほ doesn't sound so bad as fuck - we have some great English swearwords. Having them directed at you is never nice but. Hope he's coped on a bit and learns soon enough that running away to mum next door or palming Ash off over there isn't good enough. Tis the problem with living so close to the in-laws. I've had Anon comments that have told me to just divorce my husband. Chicken shit.
    Hope you're having a better day today.

  12. I ticked off at another thing:
    So you're selfish for going out for a run when your son is restless, but he's not selfish for watching a video at the same time ?
    Sounds very weak, and IMO, the lazy ass loses that kind of argument.

    For the English slur part, I have to agree with other non-natives: I curse much more in English than in my native French. I just don't feel the power of the words as strong as their equivalent in my first language.
    I'm not saying it was no problem to say those words, but it possibly was not as strong for him as to say "出て行け、このあま!"
    which sounds weaker to me (well, the Japanese may not be that good), but probably stronger to a native like your husband.
    Even if that is the case, he's got some good amount of apologizing and 反省 to do...

  13. I get told "fuck you" and "go fuck off" in English when the hub gets angry. (and I usually say "ok I will!" and then go shopping lol) I don't get the privelage of being sworn at in Japanese...probably because he knows I wouldn't understand it. The book "men are from mars women are from venus" really helped me understand our relationship, and also Dr Phil says "pick your battles", it's so true. We were headed for a divorce early on but we managed to change ourselves around because we realised than men and women deal with anger differently. :) Good luck with your relationship, I hope you can reach a mutual understanding. I think maybe your husband has some growing up to do though.

  14. I have such little experience to bring to this situation, but I think the fact that Ryo said what he said in English deserves more reflection. If he said something abusive in Japanese, it would be a worse sign, even if it didn't hurt your feelings as much.

    I mean, you did get married early, but don't most couples start to have huge fights after they are several years into the relationship? My parents went crazy at each other all of a sudden 15 years into the marriage, and now they are adorably close again. It was just a very stressful period for both of them, with their children and finances.

    I can't give personal advice but I think the idea of "making a schedule" is a good one. Please know that you have a lot of friends here (hmmm... mostly anonymous internet friends, but still) that care for you because we can tell from your sense of humor and warmth that you're an amazing lady, a caring mom, and a sexy wife.

  15. You're brave and you're tremendously, as others have said, refreshingly honest. Hope this ugliness gets worked out soon. Never easy, never fun, but very very human. The number of comments says it all: you're not alone. The Canadians send love.

  16. What is a 'come to Jesus talk'?

  17. missbehaving - I think it's a 'come' ... 'to' ... 'jesus'... 'thing'.... involving lots of squiffing vino and trying to be nice to people while forgetting the surfboard in your genken would do greatly better damage to head than my frypan - while saying hail mary or whatever.

    Fuck it.

    I've completely missed the mark I think. Sorry misbehaving but it's up to you to figure out the Jesus talk thing.

  18. See for definition of 'come to jesus' meeting

  19. LOL @ GW, I thought maybe it was something everyone was using and yet again I'm alone and out of the loop. ;)