I was going to say it all started with the Tupperware cupboard, but in reality, it had always been about the Tupperware cupboard.
Everybody back then had Tupperware. We had a lot of it, and the issue was knowing where in the cupboard, the lid for the one piece you needed was hiding.
It was a constant source of conflict.
Our Tupperware cupboard was once the pantry/linen cupboard until our collection of ‘must-have’ Tupperware got so great it overwhelmed the space.
It became ‘my job’ to tidy the cupboard. Her method of dealing with the Tupperware as it was used was to throw it into the cupboard until an unworkable pile of Tupperware filled the room.
Then, as fate would have it, with me having far more important things to do, like caring for kids, the inevitable argument would begin.
“Are you going to tidy this cupboard or not?” (This was her default setting in emotional blackmail.)
The argument would go back and forth like that. Me arguing I had other things to do, like prepare lessons for the next day, comfort an upset child or do the washing up.
One night our two minds raging about whose job it was resulted in violence.
My argument that if it was so important to you why don’t you fix it was not one she took on board; rather, it was a ‘red rag to a bull’.
She came from a place where physical persuasion was the way you solved any problem and so when she thought that was an option she resorted to just that.
It wasn’t the first time, this time it was a length of the vacuum cleaner rod.
I stayed up until 2 am fixing up the cupboard.
It didn’t solve anything, apart from her getting her cupboard organised, which lasted a week or so until the chaos returned. More so it built up a resentment, which furthered the loggerhead we found ourselves in, which resulted in more violence and terrified children who to this day will tell me how they felt.
We are still at loggerheads all these years later, even though we have been divorced for more then twenty years.
It’s best to avoid each other, for when we are near each other the opportunity for us to say something that sends us back to our ‘loggerhead’ state is often very tempting and at the same time one I want to flee from.
Being at loggerheads is a waste of time for neither of us will give in; we both believe we are/were right, which means nothing gets resolved.