Limits

How to write about this. For documentary reasons I try really hard to write down what’s going on for me. For reasons of tact I try to figure out how to do so without blowing things up in my life.

I’m having feelings over how some interactions have gone.

It is interesting to me to note that as I am feeling some objection about some interaction the way I am phrasing this in my head is: even my children don’t get to talk to me like that.

It’s funny how we develop standards and boundaries. Teaching my children how to treat me has been one of the best experiences of my life. In large part because it has worked. My kids are hella polite. They can code switch between many different behavioral expectations. At this point… EC can even handle sitting quietly through a class-like setting.

I thought this day would never come. And yet! With patience and tolerance she has eventually gotten here.

But it’s bigger than that. My children respect me. My children listen to what I have to say and they don’t cut me off to talk about unrelated subjects very often. When I go out into the world I am reminded that other people do not respect me and they do not listen to what I have to say. They are very happy to talk over me and bring up an entirely unrelated point.

You know what? I don’t need to engage with this much. I can… just opt out. I’m not dependent on anyone’s help anymore. I love this feeling so much. It’s like what I learned on the road trip: no amount of “help” is worth putting up with someone who will degrade me in even the smallest of ways. Like the dude who called me stupid. Like E’s parents who wanted to rant at me about domestic violence and home schooling. Like the woman who told me I was wrong for asking to sleep in the same room as my children.

Bye.

I can keep moving. I don’t need this shit.

IT’S THE BEST FUCKING FEELING IN THE UNIVERSE.

I don’t need you. Bye.

It’s all shivery and glowy and powerful. Muahahahahahaha

I asked Noah if being unwilling to take shitty treatment is the same as having self worth and he agreed that it’s kind of different. I may not think that I’m that awesome, but I’m not going to take no shit off of no one.

Why not? Because I have already taken the limit of shit I’m willing to take in this lifetime. I’m full up. My childhood was enough for ten lifetimes. When I needed help in order to not die, I took shit with the help.

don’t need help from anyone. Err, except for Noah. And you know what?!?!?! He gives me less shit than anyone else alive.

For the life of me I don’t understand his way of measuring cost/benefit because Noah deserves way better than I give him. How do I learn to give him better to be more appropriate? It’s complicated because often I’m giving at the limit of what I know how to give and feeling like I must come up with more is very frustrating. When I get frustrated at my limitations… I take it out on the people around me. Which is the height of shitty and unfair.

One more day to get through. Then a day of travel. Then I get to go home and crawl into a snuggle pile with the people who love me best in the whole world.

I can barely wait.

Lately the pile includes me leaning my head on Noah’s chest while FMC lies more or less on top of me and EC lies on my legs to be also on dad. It’s glorious.

I lean on Noah. The kids mostly lean on me. They lean on him more with the passing of years and that feels really awesome too. Developmentally it is normal for children to bond most with their mothers early on. Branching out to heavily include dad before puberty is also very appropriate.

Sometimes I feel this feeling of elation. My children are developing normally. My children are hitting normal stages. My children are demonstrating appropriate change over time.

HOW DID I NOT BREAK THEM ALREADY?!??!?! I DO NOT TRUST THIS MAGIC.

The reason I hurt peoples heads is because these times when I suddenly use caps… I do more or less shout those sentences. I’m so irritating.

I’m passionate.

Which is part of why I’m way more palatable via text.

So I was the recipient of some behavior I have a problem with. I’m going to put my big girl panties on and figure out how to handle this without being nasty.

Is it nasty to say, “If there is ongoing punishment for having opinions that are not what you want me to have… how about if I just leave today and stay in a hotel. That’s totally ok with me.”

I think I’m going to pack and be ready to walk out. That was a beautiful prescient moment I had in E’s parents’ house. I was 95% packed before we walked down to that fateful breakfast where his father pissed me off for the last time.

Yeah… I’ll be packed before they wake up.

Maybe I’m throwing a temper tantrum too. Maybe I’m demonstrating that if you throw a temper tantrum in my direction because you don’t like my opinions there are consequences. I. Do. Not. Reward. Tantrums.

It’s a parenting standpoint I’m quite firm about and I sure as shit am not going to indulge a grown person in such bullshit. But I’m afraid I’m a hypocrite who indulges myself in temper tantrums. Shit.

This is part of the problem of demanding better treatment. If you don’t also hand it out… you are a piece of shit. I’m not sure I always deliver on the behavior I expect to receive and that’s shitty of me.

That’s something I need to work on. A lot.

2 thoughts on “Limits

  1. Noah

    Eh, you get to decide your limits. It *is* okay for you to have different limits than the person you’re negotiating with (your “counterparty” in the professional parlance.) But you *do* need to have *compatible* limits or no agreement gets reached. Which can be okay too, if you have a good enough BATNA (Best Alternative To Negotiated Agreement.) A lot of what you’re crowing about in this post is that you currently have a good enough BATNA that it’s not a huge deal if you walk and the agreement doesn’t happen.

    In general, say the negotiating books, a negotiation will be won by whoever is *less* invested in making a deal occur – the party with the better BATNA, usually.

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