No wonder I’m sometimes so fucked up mood wise. No wonder my brother can’t cope and makes everyone’s life difficult despite our best efforts to help him. My mum comes home in a bad mood about half the time. My dad wants everything to go his way and when he doesn’t, he shouts and gets angry and curses and keeps persevering rather than compromising. My mum rushes the cooking, and the painting, and pretty much everything else. The mood lingers.
Everyone in my family loves to make others feel small when they feel distressed. My brother does it most openly, insulting me with the things he knows will hurt the most. Going blind to morality in his actions and taking advantage of my weakness in pointing out that he is being immoral. He feeds off my retaliation, because he knows I will not be as terrible as he is. As soon as he needs something, though, he comes crawling to me (regardless what I’m doing or what mood I’m in) wanting reassurance – exactly the right things he wants to hear. If I refuse him on the grounds of something he did another time, he spits venom, plots revenge and leaves to get what he wants from someone else.
My dad dies it more rarely, but when he shouts he really shouts, and makes whoever his attention is turned towards feel like crying. He goes beyond things that he’d say in anger: when he shouts, his words are daggers which cut straight to the core of your personhood. Maybe that’s where Alex gets it. Afterwards he expects everything to be fine when he’s calmed down.
My mum is profoundly impatient and feels uncomfortable most of the time when she has to do something. She wants it over with as quickly as possible, and doesn’t get stuck in because she is only superficially doing it because she wants it over with. She half-does jobs she doesn’t like. When the task doesn’t bend to her will immediately she snaps and the mood in the entire house is affected. She’s ruthless with spreading bad mood, no conscience about it. When she insults me it’s in a harmless manner and light tone, but she doesn’t listen to any justification. She just makes you feel like shit because she feels like shit.
I am probably most like my mum mood wise. I need to be careful because I find myself being impatient like her and also taking my bad mood out on my boyfriend just as she does on me.