A day that started out beautifully, Miss Daughter and I had talked out all we needed to talk out. We accomplished some things around the house, and decided to take care of some Christmas returns for her and Mr. Son. Our shopping trip was successful, entertaining, full of laughs and good feelings. Our return home was filled with more good times. The three of us playing a game, eating our dinner together, joking and laughing the entire time.
Funny how things can take a downhill turn so quickly.
Mr. Son and Miss Daughter decided to visit the nearest Red Box to rent a couple of DVDs, they were still in good spirits when they returned home.
Seemingly out of nowhere, a moment of teasing, became an all out battle of wills. Then it turned into full fledged war. Pride, manipulation, and anger came to the fore.
As I sat on the sidelines, I witnessed something that filled me with shock and sadness.
I felt as if I were in some kind of time warp. The battle I was observing was one so very much like those I had been an unwilling participant in more times than I count. The battle I witnessed this evening could have been one between my soon-to-be-ex and myself.
Only the gender roles were reversed. Miss Daughter was the one full of stubborn pride, manipulation and drama. Mr. Son was full of anger and pride also, but still wanting the evening to return to what it had been. Both stubborn, both wanting their own way, both unwilling to bend to the other, until eventually Mr. Son gave in, he let her have her way. But it was too late. She had not gotten her wishes immediately fulfilled, thus they both ended up going their separate ways, neither happy.
When the battle was in the skirmish stage, Miss Daughter was in her bedroom, talking to herself, but really talking so that I and Mr. Son would hear her. "I always win, I am more stubborn, this time is going to be no different."
Hearing her spoken thought processes, I wondered...is that what used to go through soon-to-ex's mind? He always won? I always caved in?
You see she did win. Even when Mr. Son finally got what he wanted, she still won. Her behavior had cost us all the good feelings we had been holding within us only moments before. A very familiar scenario.
My mind then went to the future, their futures. Their future relationships. Is this how it will be? These behaviors, their way of dealing with differences between loved ones, is this what they learned from their father and I?
I could imagine it in my mind's eye, each of them ending up with their opposites. Mr. Son with someone full of manipulative control needs. Miss Daughter with someone who buries their own needs to keep her happy, to avoid conflict with her.
It makes me so very sad to contemplate this. To think they may find themselves in relationships that mirror the only "loving" relationship they have witnessed.
I made the attempt to speak with each of them. To open their eyes to how they had each behaved. I failed, miserably.