We come from a line of passive aggressives. Meltdowns are inward and under our breath. Clipped words like fine and whatever announce my bitch switch is flipped. But of all the ways to say fuck off, silence is my favourite.
Rather than hash it out, I freeze him out. Funny thing, after a quarter century of marriage, the silent treatment isn’t punishment if he wanted you to shut up in the first place.
The Wake Up Call
The alarm rings quietly by my bedside. I stretch, roll over, and glare at my mate. Normally I’d wake him too, but he didn’t specifically ask me to. Besides, he thinks he’s so damn smart – he’ll find another job in no time.
Breakfast: you must be yolking
Slamming doors is so 1962. Modern women drop metal pans onto granite countertops. Or scoop 1/3 less coffee grounds into the filter before turning it on. No skin off my back, I’m a tea drinker.
My adolescent daughter stomps into the room – a trail of frost forming behind her. We lock eyes. Mine say “I spent the last hour cleaning this kitchen, mess it up and I’ll cut you.” She hesitates, shrugs, and moves on. I take that as a win!
The Drive: nice blinker asshole
Roadwork is rampant, traffic is clogged. I stare straight ahead, blithely ignoring cars on my right trying to merge in, cursing at drivers who follow the speed limit. It’s not my fault I’m late – the road to success is always under construction.
The Office: don’t make me type with caps on
I attack my inbox, all piss and vinegar, replying to messages with “As per my last email.” That means I told you already. It’s a coworkers birthday. I don’t care where we go for lunch as long as it’s not one of the 12 places she named.
Dinner: were you going to do those dishes or should I?
My M-I-L doesn’t touch the potluck dish I slaved over. She says, “You look pretty with makeup on. What’s the occasion?” We smile knowingly, both members of the PA club. Touché, I think. Today, I’ll give her the win!
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