Friday, October 28, 2011

Reflections on Living with Difficult People

Right after I posted this post a few days ago I got the chance to talk to hubby about it and think about some things. It gave me the chance to realize quite a few things I hadn't noticed and to think a little more clearly on the subject.

What I realized is that EVERY single time in this last 9 1/2 months that I've felt unwelcome or that I've had trouble fitting into this house it has been a direct result of something they were doing. Now, I'm not placing any blame because I don't (or at least I hope) none of it was intentional. However, I do believe that they have this ingrained thinking that they need to take over and dominate everything that makes them continually repeat these behaviors.

Upon moving here one of the first things I felt was 'where do I fit in?' This was especially true at shower times. Water is gone by 10 AM and everyone is downstairs trying to shower and eat breakfast, etc. That's the normal morning rush. Now, I'm not a confrontational or competitive person at all so I really felt like there was no room for me...I didn't want to sit there with my game face on waiting to jump in the shower before someone else could so that I could get a turn before the water was gone. So I decided to start showering when the water came back at noon. I had noticed no one was down there at noon so it seemed perfect.

I did that for weeks and then all of a sudden someone else was in there every day at noon. It was Chachi. She would do the dishes, then her laundry and then shower. She was usually in there at least 45 minutes to an hour. So I moved my shower time to 5 as again, no one was in there that time of day. It was so hot, it gave me the chance to sleep fresh and clean at night. After a few weeks I noticed she was putting the kids in the shower at that time all of a sudden and if they weren't in there, she was doing dishes. Even before she had dinner done.

For a while I varied when I went down anywhere from 7 am to 9 pm and things were fine. I guess you could say I was dodging them and they couldn't keep track of me. Now it's getting cool outside and so I went back to showering at noon and guess 11:30-11:45 she starts putting her stuff in the shower so I don't go in there. She will be doing housework and not be done and yet have her laundry, dishes and clean clothes waiting for the water to come back. Still, until Monday I hadn't put my finger on the situation but I had some suspicions.

Yes, that seems a little crazy but after talking to hubby we devised a plan. I started going down to shower at 1 PM. This gave everyone time to do whatever they needed done and be out of there. The ground floor is ALWAY completely empty at that time because a certain Indian drama is on and they *rest* in front of the TV after a hard mornings work (they as in MIL and Chachi). Well guess what! Day 5 I went down to shower, running a few minutes late due to work and Chachi was in the shower at 1:10. Fascinating isn't it. So I was right.

This isn't the only issue. Some similar things have been happening in other areas too. Either way I thought back to all the explosions I've had this year where I would proclaim to hubby "just get me the **** out of this house before I lose my mind" all had revolved around them making me feel like I'm in the way. I'm not the dirt under anyone's feet and let me tell you....after the shower BS there have been several times this month I got in the shower anyway and set her junk outside. She wasn't ready for the shower and wasn't anywhere near ready. She can wait.

A few times I felt guilty thinking I should have waited but hubby reminded me during our discussion that I have equal rights to this house and he thinks I should just throw her stuff out of the shower. I told him I had but that now I realize what was making me feel that way I feel better about it all because I know I wasn't wrong. *I don't actually throw it, I set it neatly on the counter by the shower. Either way, I have thrown my American courtesy out of the window because I will not be made to feel like an outcast in my own home. I live here too.

Out of our 5 bedrooms, they sleep in only one but they have dominated 3 to the point no one else can use them. And the sad part is they are taking over space in MIL and FILs room just for the convenience of it when they don't even need to. They have their own fridge which is bigger than ours and is only theirs. 2 families share ours (us and MIL and FIL) and they too have started using our fridge. They also argued and pitched a fit when our satellite was installed on the upper terrace because they didn't think it looked good there - which translated into the fact they sleep there and didn't want it there. Now they have decided they are going to add themselves to our satellite package and get a connection of their own. So not only are they trying to take over our internet but they also want us to pay their satellite bill as well. He says it's because if he puts his name on it someone could misuse his name....ummm and our name is less valuable?

I'm sure this isn't over. 


  1. Oh how I wish I could move out lol...

  2. I have my own methods of navigating the system in the house. I have some sneaky ways of fighting back. I know it will all work out. You're right about one thing though. I do have a timetable of when I shower and I'm not going to let it be taken over so easily. I do need to stand my ground on that.

    As for the bills, some of them are split but I've noticed Uncle ji lets everyone else pay his way if he can get by with it and FIL pays more than anyone else. Rohit and I have our own power and I've always felt like we should share the bills (which we do). Life isn't free and it's not right to have someone else pay your way. Right now FIL pays for the cable for him and Uncle ji and he wants to drop that and add onto our connection. If he pays for it then I have no problem with it but it's starting to look like he has no interest in paying because he's stopped asking. We shall see how it turns out.

  3. hm. this is gonna be tricky. I think..instead of dodging.. you need to take on the issue. Maybe you can discuss with MIL/FIL and have a timetable of when to use shower. Otherwise things will keep on simmering under the surface.

    Regarding satellite connection, if everything else is shared in this house than it should also be shared. If bills are divided between families like water bill is done by one and electricity done by another then you dont have any option. But if they share each bill then you need to ask them to share this bill as well.

    The best option would be to move out.

    Gud luck.

  4. Bleh...Maybe when I'm over this irritation that could happen. I do normally like her but she's on my nerves right now lol.

  5. Give your Chachi "Pyar ki Jhappi."

  6. I can't be happy being pushy and assertive. I've done it a few times and it bothers me. It's not who I am and maybe part of it is just me fighting not to let India turn me into a monster but I don't want to be that way.

  7. yes their behaviour is rude and unconsiderate, and sadly it's partly cultural, if you want to get anything done in India you have to be pushy and assertive, so by no mean try to accomodate someone who apparently made their life mission to be a pain in the butt and purposely go under your skin. This is the only way you can get by not loosing your sanity.