Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Angry (08/02/07)
TITLE: Angry enough to love
By Andrew Curtis
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Judy and I were fine while dating; all through high school we had fun. We partied together, cried together, laughed and eventually got married together. The first year, no two, were a learning experience. There were times when both of us wanted to run and tell the other to go away; forever. Thank God that never happened.
I was listening to a co-worker tell their woes to another co-worker (we all love that office gossip). I strained to hear what they were saying.
Dave had been cheating on his wife and he was afraid she would find out. He had long since been gone emotionally and mentally but now he is leaving physically.
Sandy has been emotionally abusing her husband. She’s told him he’s worthless, can’t do anything right and she said she’d be better of if they’d never met.
Scott, well, Scott has always had a problem with alcohol and drugs. They gave him an ultimatum a month ago: Either clean up or you’re gone. From what I overheard; he’s gone.
William finally admitted he was gay; Esther has a hemorrhoid the size of a penny, Jonathan shot the neighbor’s dog for barking too loud. Max doesn’t please Judy physically, mentally or emotionally.
Wait, that’s me! I’m Max! The nerve of them!
It was all I could do to not barge into Stacey’s office and scream at her. I was literally biting my tongue.
Gossip never intrigued me, but here I was part of it. Part of the story and part of the continuing thread. I was going to tell someone else. That’s how it works.
I was boiling with anger on the way home. How did my co-workers know that I can’t please my wife in so many areas? Who told them that? It had to have been Judy, no one else knows. My anger grew and I was so enraged I almost ran a stop light and hit a pedestrian. He yelled at me and gave me the finger. I scowled at him. He has no idea what I’m dealing with. No one does.
Judy wasn’t home when I got there. I flung the mail on the table and changed. I was going to wait for her to come home and confront her. Then, we’ll see what happens.
An hour later, she comes home. I don’t greet her with a kiss, smile or hug.
Instead, I pop off my mouth and say, “How could you tell a co-worker that I don’t please you physically, mentally or emotionally? That is between us. Why didn’t you tell me yourself?”
My jaw clinched and my foot was tapping in rage as I waited her reply.
She set down her purse and took my hand.
“Max,” she smiled, “I have told you. I’ve been so angry that you haven’t listened to me at all.”
“So you run and tell Stacey?” I yelled.
“That wasn’t Stacey,” she said.
I was confused.
“I got so angry that you didn’t listen,” she continued, “I snuck into her office while you were the only one there. That was me saying all of those things. I didn’t know how else to get your attention.”
“Well who were you telling all of this too then,” I asked.
“You,” she said, “no one else was there but you.”
It was then I realized that I had become more upset and angry that someone else knew about my problem than I was at the actual problem. Judy shares her needs with me all the time; I just overlook them. She was angry too, but took action.
I then became angry with myself for not caring for her needs. She explained to me that when she expresses something and I don’t do anything about it, she feels hurt and let down; which leads to anger.
I can’t promise to never let her down, but I can promise to listen and lessen the anger a little bit. I get angry when she doesn’t do what I want. She gets angry when I don’t do what she asks.
Once I look past my selfishness and demanding requests, I see she is doing what I want. She is telling me how to love her.
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