Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I hoped this wouldn't happen.

I suspect this will be an enormously long post. I apologize to any of you who don't really have time for all my drama...

But it's really hitting the fan this week. And things started out so good!!!! "That Guy", I think, has come back. I started noticing it with little comments that DH made a few days ago, just outright angry and mean comments that were not "normal" for him. I told him I was concerned. He admitted that he knew what I was talking about, and that he was worried too. He told me that "there are some things I need to talk to the psychiatrist about." When I pressed him, he confessed that he's been feeling suicidal again, and very angry. Sad to say, he believes that the onset of these issues coincided directly with his new job.

He told me that he didn't want me to force him to quit his job. I told him (as I have before) that I think working the overnight shift is a terrible thing for someone with a mental health issue, and especially bipolar. Then I told him that right now I am just concerned, and we'll need to pay attention to things.

I DON'T WANT HIM TO QUIT. WE NEED THIS MONEY SO BAD. But I know it's not as important as DH's sanity and/or our marriage (since I know that I cannot stay married to "That Guy" for very long. What a conflict. Probably, in all honesty, he should quit. But the hope that springs from that extra paycheck is difficult to give up, for sure.

Then, cut to yesterday. DD had been having a pretty good week with DH and with me. However, her PCA (personal care attendant--a lady who is paid by the county to come to our house for three hours a day to kind of be an extra set of hands for caring for DD) told DH and I that DD has been very rude to her, and has not been following through on her care plan (DD has certain things that she is responsible for doing when the PCA prompts her--like make her bed, pick up her clothes, do her laundry, etc.). The PCA told us that she is getting very frustrated with the way DD has been treating her. And if the PCA points out anything related to bad behavior OR not doing what DD is supposed to be doing, DD gets very angry. So DH and I agreed that the three of us (DH, me, and the PCA) would all sit down and try to talk to DD about this. In hindsight, this probably was too much "ganging up" on DD, but at the time it felt like the best way to keep the PCA from being the "bad guy".

My intention was to sit down and explain to DD that she needed to respect the PCA just like she would respect a parent or a teacher. Right away, though, instead of "talking", "That Guy" jumped all over DD. He was accusatory and angry sounding. Of course, DD got defensive, and started to have one of her tantrums. She stood up and ran out of the house. Normally, at this point, I/we would let her go and just keep an eye on her, but DH stood up to chase her. I tried to stop him, but "That Guy" angrily told me not to tell him what to do. He ran outside and apparently (from what he told me later) said something to the effect of "What are you going to do, just stand there and look stupid?" (In case you didn't know, "stupid" is the equivalent to a swear word in our house). This infuriated DD, and she started screaming louder, and swearing. Then she hit DH several times with her fist. When that wasn't effective, she picked up a bicycle tire pump that was in the yard and started swinging it like a baseball bat and used it to hit DH. At this point he stormed into the house and wanted to call the police.

I really felt like "That Guy" had antagonized DD. But I couldn't say that at the time, and I still haven't said too much about it. I am very upset and angry that she used a weapon. But I am also very angry and upset that DH started it and egged her on like he did. I convinced him not to call the police. He decided not to, and told me a few minutes later that the only reason he decided not to was that our house was a mess.

DH has been saying things like "I don't understand why, when a woman gets hit, the police get called, and when a man gets hit, it's no big deal." I didn't have much to say to him about that. I think I would feel more like getting the police involved if I thought the incident was relatively unprovoked. I feel trapped. I don't know what to do. DD has an appointment with her pdoc tomorrow, and I am going to do everything I can to make sure I go too. I am having very mixed feelings towards both of them right now.

But....that's not all....while all of this was happening, of course it took up plenty of time. I went to my mom's at 8:30pm, and felt even worse: Last week I had mentioned that I had been thinking that we should have a cookout at our house on Tuesday night. Then I forgot about it. When I got to my mom's, she HADN'T forgotten--she had been waiting in her apartment all evening, waiting to go to the cookout. She skipped supper. And I never showed up. At this point I felt absolutely awful. I still feel awful about that. I told her we'd have the cookout next week for sure, and she seemed fine with that, but I can't get over the sad feeling that I stood her up. So that was another fun aspect of the week.

Then today after school, DD's PCA was there as usual. DH was sleeping. DD decided that she wasn't finished with last night, and started saying all sorts of hateful things to me and to the PCA. Her PCA finally left because she was so upset. I spent three hours listening to DD rant. She told me she was moving out, I told her to go right ahead. She told me I was lazy, and that DH and I don't love her because if we did, we wouldn't treat her like this. She told her PCA that she was fired (DD has no authority in that area) and not to come back ever. I told DD that her PCA would come back whether DD liked it or not. DD told the PCA that if she came back, DD would lock all the doors and put Frosty (our dog who doesn't like non-family members) outside. DD was getting angry because she believes I have no right to be angry about the fact that she assaulted DH. Finally I told her to leave me alone, or I was going to say something I was going to regret. By this time, the thought of DD moving out was looking pretty good. Even at this point she was still trying to get me to argue with her, but I just agreed with everything she said. Then she got angry that I DIDN'T argue. Hmph.

So. I went to Dairy Queen and got my mom a malt to make up for last night. Then I spent an hour at the pharmacy, trying to ensure that DH didn't run out of medications (I knew that would make matters even worse). Then I went home and fed and pottied all the dogs, got everything set so that I could go to work and DH wouldn't have to do anything but get out of bed and go.

He is still on Percocet for his gonad issue(s). He had an ultrasound last week and there is still some swelling. During this entire time, he has been fine with our "system", where I dole out the Percocet. When I leave before him, I get the pills ready for him to take to work. But the doctor (and I) feel that he probably doesn't need the Percocet as much as he thinks he does (story of his life, I know). So I woke him up tonite, and told him it was time to get up. I told him I went and got his meds, they were on the table. Then he said, "Did you prep me?" (Meaning "did you get my Percocet ready?") I told him that I had left one dose for him earlier and did he take that one yet? He said he hadn't taken it. I asked him if he thought he was going to need more. He said, "Well, I'd LIKE more...." and me, thinking it was DH I was talking to, said "Well, I KNOW you'd LIKE about five more, but do you think you'll NEED them?" I was trying to tease him. I wasn't crabby at all (I don't think). But "That Guy" got angry and looked at me with pissed off disgust and said "Go. Just get out of here." So I did.

Have I mentioned I hate That Guy? I suspect that pretty soon, it's going to come down to either he finds a way to get rid of "That Guy", or he quits his job, or I quit this marriage. As I've mentioned before, I have very little tolerance for "That Guy" any more, and every little episode makes me start fantasizing about divorce.

I guess this job isn't as good of a thing as I had hoped.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Where "That Guy" hopefully got washed away.....

Things have been going remarkably well with DH and his new job. I haven't heard from the Social Security people yet, but I'm expecting the "Sorry, we found someone who was a better fit" letter any day now.....so.....here's something new and unusual:

DH and I were both working overnight shifts--me at the group home and him at his workplace. He got off an hour earlier than I did. As soon as I left work, though, he called my cell phone. "Where are you??? I need you, hurry home." Me, thinking that either he got fired again, or one of the animals had died, panicked and flew home as fast as I could. When I got there, DH was in bed. I asked him what was wrong. "I had a bad day." I asked him if he got fired. "Not yet." (uh-oh).....so I suggested he tell me about it.

DH told me that there was a little old lady in a wheelchair. And she needed help reaching a change machine from her wheelchair. DH, who knew that touching her money would usually be against the rules, but also recognizing that the lady needed help, decided to help her. Another guard "told" on him, and the manager who was on duty that night came and um.....basically tore him a new one, if you know what I mean....screaming, swearing, threatening DH. But the thing that upset him was that the little old lady was absolutely traumatized. She was physically shaking, and was absolutely terrified. Luckily, the manager's supervisor had been observing the entire thing on the surveillance camera, and came down, said "I want to talk to you" to the manager, and assigned DH to a new post. He told DH that he didn't do anything wrong, and that he would want any guard to help someone in that situation. After telling me this, DH burst into tears (this is monumental--for him, I think it's a FIRST) and cried for about a half hour straight. He was so worried about that lady, and he just couldn't calm down. Eventually, though, I reminded him that if the manager's supervisor was on top of things enough to come and intervene, he probably knew that the lady was upset and he probably did something to make her feel better (freebies, etc).

I didn't realize until afterwards, that "That Guy" never showed up. Not when DH was being yelled at, and not while he was telling me about the situation, either. This is the first time I can remember that DH has cried like that, ever. I know that's a good thing. DH told me, "I'm sorry, I was just so pissed off that if I didn't cry, I was going to be really angry."

FIXED-->(Oh for Pete's sake, I have no idea why we're getting that weird "proxy" message--I'll try to fix that on a different computer, I guess--right now I'm on a Mac, and maybe that's causing problems...? I don't know--but I apologize!)

Wow. (Of course I told him he didn't have anything to apologize for)....I am just absolutely flabbergasted that "That Guy" did not make even a minor appearance--then I hoped "That Guy" drowned in the tears :-)

The next night, the manager, it turns out, was suspended. Her supervisor called DH into his office and reiterated that he did nothing wrong. DH asked about the old lady, and the manager told him that he "took good care of her". DH asked if he was going to be written up for this, and the supervisor again told him that he would expect any guard to help in that situation. Thank God.

I'm a little worried that DH might get trouble from the manager who got suspended. But since everything is recorded there, hopefully it can be stopped before it turns into anything big. The supervisor did make a point of telling DH that "if you have any problems, let me know..." and DH and I both thought that he was referring to the possibility of retaliation by the manager.

I'm so proud of DH, I could burst.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Tired of DD's lies and tantrums and defiance and intimidation.....

DD turned 17 this past week. Because I was feeling like maybe things were finally changing for the better, DH and I opted to buy her a little portable DVD player. She's not allowed to have TV in her room, but I figure we have more control over that, and maybe she wouldn't be so needy if she had a mini-babysitter (I know that's bad, but she's 17 and she acts like she's 3!)

The day after her birthday, which involved a trip with a friend to the zoo (I paid) and cake and ice cream (and two new outfits and the dvd player), her pca (personal care attendant) who is awesome, requested that she be allowed to go home early because DD's attitude was awful and she was afraid she was going to say or do something unprofessional. So of course I said "sure, I completely understand." Then, as soon as the pca left, DD TOLD me that "I'm going to go watch movies now." And I told her, "Um, you were so rude that your pca asked to leave (that's never ever happened before)....you don't get to do fun stuff just because she's gone." And DD said, "It's mine, I can watch movies if I want!" and I said, "Actually, I still have the receipt, and I can return it...."

DD: You can't return it, I already opened it!

Me: I can, they take stuff back all the time, all I have to do is tell them I didn't like it.

DD: No! NO!!!! I HATE YOU!!!! YOU'RE A BITCH!!!!

Me: That's fine, but you need to go to your room now.

DD: You can't make me.

Me: Nope, I can't, but I can bring that movie player back.

DD: Ok, Ok....I'm sorry!!!! Geez, mom.

Me: (trying to go into the other room) Ok.


Me: Not when you sound like that.

DD: Can we talk about this?

Me: No. It's not negotiable. I will count to five. If you are not in your room with your door closed by the time I get to five, the movie player goes back.

DD: (screams at the top of her lungs)

Me: One.

DD: (screams some more)

Me: Two.

DD: OKAY. (slams the door).

Me: You know that you just lost your door, right?

DD: (screams some more)

That's just kind of how things went that night. I don't even want to talk to her. I'm so tired of her stupid 2-year-old tantrums....she really strains every ounce of self-control I have lately. And I don't know what to do. Except not give in.

I've got to go for now, but I'll be posting more on this later.

Employed does not mean healthy.

Well, DH has been working now for three weeks. He's really excited about it and he seems very proud to be helping out (the first paycheck will either show up tomorrow or Monday). He is excited about our agreement--what I decided was, and I believe that given our financial situation, it's more than fair, his check will go into my account via direct deposit. On payday I will give him $50.00 in "fun money". Then, since DH and I both know that that money will be gone almost instantly, a week later, on the week he doesn't get paid, he'll get $50.00 MORE in "fun money", and the rest of the paycheck will be mine to use toward bills. I'll still pay for gas and pop and cigarettes for the most part, out of that money. (DH and I are both (surprisingly enough) of the opinion that if I allowed him money for gas, pop, etc., he'd spend it and I'd be coming up with money for those things anyhow. While his awareness is much better than it's been for a long time, his self-control is still pretty non-existent.

And then there's the concept of "not every day at work is a good day." There have been a few times where DH has been told he's doing something wrong, or not at the right time. He has gotten so upset over these things, I had to ask him to take a Lorazepam to calm down. I've had to tell him that panicking is not a good way to handle any situation. But he gets almost tearful and says, "I'll be crushed if I lose this job too." And I feel so bad. But panicking every time something goes wrong is not likely to improve his performance. I'm hoping that as he works more, he'll become healthier in that area.

I'm kind of weirded out lately. I've been "unemployed" (from my full time job) for two and a half months now, and I go and look for jobs, apply for a few, and then I really don't remember what I used to do with myself when I had free time. And then I feel guilty, because there are really so many things I should be doing, I just have no idea where to start.

And I need to learn how to do a job interview without quaking in my boots.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

An interview for me.....

Hi everyone, I hope you all had a happy and blessed Easter....I enjoyed Easter Dinner (from the crockpot(s), of course) with my mom and DH. DD opted to go with her "real" mom, which, since we already had plans, really bothered me, but I let her go just so she wouldn't ruin my day. I know that's bad parenting, but sometimes, with her tantrums, I just mentally throw up my hands and say "it doesn't matter anyhow, she's not getting any less selfish by being told what to do....." I guess that's a whole 'nother post, but I am so fed up with the selfishness--maybe there's a reason God didn't give me biological kids, huh? I don't know. But it seems like DD's friends are a lot less selfish than her, and so I don't think it's unnatural to be fed up with her "me, me, me" attitude. Just wish I knew what to do about it, of course...

I interviewed today to be a Disability Examiner with the State. I was surprised to find that I wasn't as nervous as I usually am, but I don't think I was a stand-out candidate, either. I can only hope that the other candidates came across as not-so-stellar, too. I know I didn't say anything that was an "Oh no, just blew the interview..." but I didn't say anything amazing, either, and I've been second-guessing myself and determined that I'm not impressed.

The strangest thing about this interview--I don't remember applying for that job at all. And my heart won't be broken if I don't get it. But I am now in the mood to work a little harder on my job search. It's so easy to become complacent, and I'm afraid I've been guilty of that. I need to get things in gear!

DH is still employed. Last night made five days of work for him. He still seems excited about it, and says he hasn't had any problems yet. I'm going to cross my fingers (still)....and another good thing???? He has come out and said that he is going to just turn over his entire check to me. I will continue to buy him pop and put gas in his car. And I'll give him a little "fun money". And the rest will be to pay bills--how cool is that going to be if he can keep this job???!!!! I'm so proud of him--even before he got "sick", he never would have decided to do that. But I guess after all this time, it must be pretty obvious that I'll make sure his needs are met, as much as I possibly can.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Four Days.....

Well, DH has been at his new job for four days now, and he hasn't been fired or even reprimanded, if he's being honest about things....he's so excited to be working again, I am really hoping that it will work, but I am still not confident...it's a pretty active job, and after three years of laying in bed/sitting on couch, walking a bunch and breaking up fights is a lot more than he's used to. Consequently, he has a lot of physical complaints. I hope he can work past them, and I told him that it would be better if he didn't share those complaints with his manager unless he absolutely couldn't do his job...and DH didn't seem to understand why he should keep quiet. But he said he would, anyhow....

On Thursday morning he came home and I was sleeping (Rather surprising, but I've been going to bed at around 10pm and not getting up until about 10am--and I'm just exhausted!). Anyhow, I was sleeping, and he walked in, all slumped over, and I woke up and asked him what was wrong. "You're not gonna believe this", he said. "I don't know what I'm doing wrong!" I asked him what he meant. "I got fired again!" I got real alarmed and jumped out of bed, thinking that this was terrible, and what happened now, etc....

And he looked me in the eye and said "April Fool. Go back to bed."


But I did kind of deserve it, for an April Fools joke I played on him back before he got sick--he's never forgiven me for that, and every once in a while I tease him about it....so I guess what's good for the goose....right? LOL

Today will be a busy day. When I get off work at 8am, I'm going to run to my mom's and throw food in crockpots, then run home and take a nap. Then I'll get up and bring her to church (just down the hall) and then we'll have our Easter. Then I'll go home and sleep a little more, and then go to work again. I've got to tell them that I don't want all these hours, but it's hard when I think about the paycheck :-(

But I'll never find a "good" full time job, if I keep spending all my time working for this (supposedly) part time job.

Oh well. Happy Easter everyone!