Fall Flashback Season
2007-10-10, 3:55 p.m.
So, things are not quite as uneventful as I claim them to be. While I personally am not having heavy drama dropped on my head, I seem to be the eye in other people's storms. And both storms seem to be related to Angry Men.
Here's what an Angry Man typically acts like, for those who don't know:
Now, my dad (pre-illness) was an Angry Man. I don't think he hated women and he never acted like he did, but he definitely had a whole lotta taking-rage-out-on-others going on. While god knows he wasn't always pleasant to deal with as his well self, I didn't exactly take it well when he became the illness-induced "softer" version either, because that was not what he was like At All. Totally different person.
Why anyone finds these men attractive enough to marry, I have no idea, but two people I know are married to Angry Men and going through hell because of it.
Storm #1: The drawn-out Laurie and Ron debacle. At this point, Laurie is completely depressed, but doing NOTHING and being rather uncooperative about doing anything but moping. To the point where my mom, of all people, is about to lose it. To the point where Laurie's own mom has lost it and "taken to her bed." I have lost track of all of the times people have tried to have a Talking-To with her by now. Let's just say that it's a good thing I haven't been in the Bay Area for a few weeks now (and at the moment, have no concrete plans to return any time soon).
Storm #2: my best pal in the coven is also married to an Angry Man, and he has been driving her crazy for months now. She was already feeling like they were having way too much Quality Time together (i.e. when he's feeling like an ass, guess who's first in line to pick on) as is. Last week, he broke his leg very badly, enough to require hospitalization, three surgeries, and three months of NO MOVING coming up when he gets out. Which, unfortunately, should be in a few days.
This is giving me flashbacks on all sorts of levels. Her husband reminds me of my dad back before 1997, but while he occasionally has a good moment and so far (I expect this will change) he's been nothing but polite to me and the rest of the gang, his behavior is worse. Then throwing in confinement on top of that, not to mention hospitalization... it's like the worst of both worlds, somehow. God knows illness doesn't tend to bring out the good in people.
When it first happened, I thought, "Oh, the hospital is the EASY part. Because you don't live there, and you don't have to be dealing with him 24-7. You can still have some free time to yourself." Hah. The hospital he's in is even worse about "visiting hours" than the ones Dad was in. "Visiting hours" is a joke, you can be there all fucking day and night if you "want" and nobody will send you home. What this means is that he's calling her at 7 a.m., even if she got home at 1 a.m., bitching her out for not being at the hospital yet, and he'd rather she not leave except to get him food until he goes to sleep.
Since she is unemployed right now (she was job hunting, but now that's all shot to shit), she doesn't have the excuse of work to go to. It's a Big Fucking Deal if she goes home for a few hours to do dishes and the laundry, and he'll call her a bunch of times to bitch while she's doing it. And meanwhile, while she's sitting there doing her duty all day, he'll out of the blue start screaming at her for "cheating" at cards or some random shit he pulled out of his ass.
There is no doubt in my mind that she will go through hell with him for the next 3-6 months. He won't want her to leave the house once he's let out, except to get food. And everyone, including my friend and her husband, are at a loss as to how she's going to freaking take care of him when she can't lift him and he can't move, they don't have a car they can fit him into, etc. The part that flabbergasts me is that the husband actually asked the doctor about this and the doctor was all, "Huh. Yeah. Good point." And that was IT. I keep telling her to ask about worker's comp/insurance paying for in-home help or a rehab hospital stay (and given the no-moving thing, the latter sounds like it might be a damned good idea, even if he just wants to go home), but from our fun experiences with insurance, I wouldn't count on either being provided for her, somehow.
I was over at her house for a bit on Sunday and she wanted her son (he's almost 18) to go with her. He said he would, then tried to back out of it, and she lost it because she did not want to go alone. I felt like saying to the kid, "Look, I don't blame you for not wanting to go. I sure as fuck wouldn't, and I never did. But you have to do your duty here, suck it up, and go through hell for a few hours. At least YOU only have to visit for a few weeks." I thought about going with her, but given that he's now pouting if she wants to do anything other than sit at his bedside, he's annoyed at me. I figured me going there would only make things worse on her when he decides to start screaming. Ugly to say, but...I've done this dance before, I know how he's gonna step.
This is going to be nothing but ugly. I kind of figure the "whether or not to divorce" question is going to be decided definitively when it's all over, but right now, she's trapped with no escape.