Tuesday, May 23, 2006

094: DOMESTIC DISPUTE

So my parents are getting divorced.

That's really the crux of this blog entry. But before I delve into any more detail, here's a transcript of the other night. It involves my parents and my sister. Names have been omitted to protect the innocent (and those who could care less).

It all starts on Saturday night as my sister is leaving to go to a party. As per usual, she is in fine form, dressed to the nines. Her hair is immaculate and she is wearing a trendy white overcoat, a black mini and tan coloured fish net stockings. She walks past the living room as she is leaving where my parents sit, engrossed in Walker: Texas Ranger.

Mum: Bye hun, have a good time tonight. Call us if you need anything.

My sister: See ya.

My dad shifts his weight in his seat before chiming in.

Dad: If something happens to you dressed like that, don’t call me. I aint coming!

My sister: What?

Dad: Look at the way you're dressed!!

I can see the rage building in my sister. She's a tiny little chick, but god damn she's feisty and I've been on the receiving end of her wrath many times.

My sister: What the fuck dad!?!?

My father turns his attack onto my mother who is intensely observing this clash of the titans.

Dad: And you! What kind of mother are you letting your daughter out of the house practically dressed like a whore!!?

My mother carefully prepares her response, but is cut off by more of my Dad's ranting. She starts bawling uncontrollably. Dad gets up off his chair and storms into his bedroom, slamming the door behind him. My sister follows and tries to open the door, only to find that it is locked. She starts to pound on the door.

My Dad: Get out!! This is my room and this is my space and I wont let you invade it!!

My sister: God dammit!! What the hell is wrong with you!?!? Let me in here this instant!!

Mum continues to sob, muttering something about how much she hates us all. My sister continues to pound on the door, screaming.

My sister: If you have something to say about me, just say it to my face!

My Dad: Leave me alone, go out to your party for God's sake!!

Let's stop here.

You see usually at this point, I just close the door, or just crank up my stereo to drown them out. But for some reason this time I couldn’t help but quietly watch and listen (from a safe distance of course - no need to get caught in the crossfire).

As I watched the three of them rip into each other, it all seemed so familiar. So homely. My mum's emotional nature. My dad's immaturity. My sister's brutal honesty.
All three of them were like a car crash, with passengers and children flying through windscreens every which way. All I could think about was Vince, the imaginary crash dummy that sits in my passenger seat. He would wether this storm with much more dignity.

Families are a strange thing. Random people are put together through a fluke of genetics and suddenly you have four people trapped together in a small brick box, struggling to deal with each other. I long ago detached myself from their dastardly games, preferring to quietly retreat into the delicious safety and neon lights of my bedroom.
Nowadays I'm simply not home enough to get embroiled in these disputes. My family show very little interest in my movements. It's a good thing. I tend to keep them at arms length. Its' been that way for the last six years, ever since they reacted horribly to my coming out.

But that aside, this is why I wasn’t that surprised or hurt by their decision to get a divorce. I talked with my sister about it last night, huddled in front of the heater eating low fat yoghurt. We both decided that they would undoubtedly be happier. And now that we're both relatively grown up, it wont impact us as much.

I suppose the most surprising thing for me here is that it doesn’t bother me. I love my family, but I've never been close to them. They have no understanding of the man that I am, and I rarely understand them. It’s just the way things are. I'm certainly not sad about it, I've learned to accept it.

So here passes another chapter in the life of my dysfunctional folks. I'm still often ashamed to be genetically linked to them, but I have to accept them, for the flawed human beings they are.
The next few months will no doubt be harrowing for them, so I'll stand ready with a sympathetic smile, a sarcastic remark and a full assortment of rums, both spiced and regular.
the end.

8 Comments:

Blogger Denny said...

Slim, your parents did one good thing, they gave us you. No matter what, there are quite a few of us who are very grateful to them for that.

7:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

a kind word, a shoulder or as you say a smart remark to lighten the room. So many responses to choose from. They are all there if you need them.

9:25 PM  
Blogger Slim said...

Denny: thanks for your warm words. Most days I'm greatful for my existence too. Contrary to popular belief!

Shane: I often use my sarcasm as a form of comfort or as a defence mechanism when things get bad. It's not so healthy, but it seems to work for me.

7:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We all have our ways of dealing with things... If you need someone to scream at, smack around with a malet or maybe a shoulder to cry on, let me know... im padded!

9:46 PM  
Blogger izchan said...

coming out.

It speaks more than just what you mean. It means, you are no longer bound by the unseen line. You are no longer keeping the anger within. No more hiding behind loud music and closed doors.

It means, you are now more mature (in some states) and able to see this whole life thing in a clearer picture. I am happy for you.

As for your family? they will work itself out. They always do.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Mel said...

Well no pat responses from me babe - your parents are showing themselves to be what we all are - human. People marry and have kids and seem to be living society's idea of a family doesn't mean they are - some people shouldn't be together, some are too lazy, scared and just too stupid to get divorced and try and have the life they really want. How many of us are actually brave enough to live the way we want to? When we make big (mistakes) decisions in our lives, we tend to live with the consequences and more often than not it's the consequences who suffer - Your dad's aggression at your sister is obviously frustrations from other things in his life as well... your mother's emotional response is the way she copes - It's admirable that your sister confronted your dad, kudos to her - what this shows is that each one of you behaved in the way you wanted to - and chaos ensued but it was honest. A family divided isn't a bad thing all the time - you probably conceded to that a long time before now.
Talk with you next week. If you want... xoxo

1:13 PM  
Blogger mocushile said...

Its really sad to here they are getting divorced but as it was mentioned before by denny

you are their gift to us all your friends I kindda also say u r a gift from God too...lets not get too religious ...

but yeah if u need to rant or punch someones arms Iam here for you

I ve been thru that I know u aint sad but my family is a sitcom !!!! so yeah seen alot.. actually mona is getting divorced too but I dont know if she is doing it for a good or a bad reason!!

sounds to me your mum is cut and she needs her space and so does your dad ..maybe they will be happier alone! who knows

8:28 PM  
Blogger Slim said...

Guys, thanks for all your words of support. Really I am okay with this arrangement. I feel it's for the best and it will honestly majke them both better people.

Mel: trier words were never spoken. I beleive my family has gotten top the point where no one sheilds anyone from anything. The tuth is exposed for all to see no matter how unattractive.

Iz: I believe in the power of things to work themselves out if left alone. I beleive they'll sort themselves out.

Mocushile: I'm so sorry to hear about your sister Mona. Seems these days relationhips crumble all around us. It's a badge of honour to have one thrive and survive without any major kitchen appliances getting thrown at my head!

1:52 PM  

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