Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Festering shitheap

In every relationship there are things you can't, or more often won't, talk about. You decide to forget about them as best you can for the sake of harmony or so you tell yourself, although if they rankle, you feel the opposite of harmony: festering discord. With some women -- people, I suppose, but I've only ever dated women (although I think you can feel the same about friends too) -- you just can't bring things up. It will be too painful and you allow yourself to believe cowardice can be passed off as decency. Sometimes you feel like the time isn't ripe and then somehow it never is. And your discontents can fester -- the things you have set aside rot and spread a corrosion into your relationship, eating it from the inside, sometimes hollowing it out until all you have is the shell, and you try to convince yourself that is scaffolding but it resembles more the exoskeleton of a once-living organism, a dried husk.

Sometimes you feel, why can't you just have the fight? Because there will be a fight. Fundamentally you wouldn't have anything festering if your partner cared about how you felt and nothing sparks the fighting spirit quicker than trying to make a person care about what they don't. And often what is festering is small shit that you precisely differ over because you care about it and they don't. You feel like something meaty would be resolvable or at least definitively not resolvable but you can't have a satisfying fight over your partner's not caring that you can't properly fall in love with your unborn child because she thinks it shouldn't have a name before it's born. And it's not even wrong to feel like that. But you can't help feeling it's wrong not to care that it upsets you.

And who wants to be the pathetic soul left crying "please care"? Aren't I supposed to be strong? I am but I am also not supposed to be on my own. I'm not good at it. I too need holding up sometimes lest I drown. And yet I do not drown. I thrash in the water until I find some muddy bottom to drag my feet through. I shoulder another festering shitheap. I resign myself to life with a woman who doesn't ask why I can't sleep because she can't sleep and mine is less. Mine is always less and I resign myself to my shitheap of smaller is still something, it is my smaller and I have to care because who else is there for me?