He managed to piss me off. I usually control my emotional reactions to him, as I try not to give him any supply at all, negative supply included, but I was relaxed and alone at home and his saccharine but controlling phone call just did it... and I'm ashamed because if anyone was to read the transcript, they'd say I was the evil one, and he was just being nice:
NF: I've heard from your MIL (my 5yo daughter is on a trip with my MIL) and I don't know if you've heard from them, but your daughter is having a great time, is eating well, and doesn't miss her parents much! I just thought I should report this to you.
Me: Yes, I know all that, naturally. (I say this in an already irritated tone of voice - of course I talk to my daughter and her grandma and don't need a virtual stranger to them both informing me of this!)
NF: All right. How are you? How is your younger daughter?
Me: We're great, thanks.
NF: No, how are you really? (We have a cold. We're both fine, especially if he asks. He suggested, repeatedly and aggressively, that we take Toddler to the doctor because she has a cold.)
Me: We're really fine. Getting over the little cold.
NF: I'm sure you got the cold because your hair was wet that one time I came to visit and you wouldn't blow-dry it. (I have almost never done this to my hair since I was 13 or so. I let my hair dry naturally, several times a week, in all seasons and temperatures, and only get a cold once every two years or so!)
Me: (This is where I lose it and significantly raise my voice): I wash my hair without blow-drying it several times a week and have done so since I was a teen.
NF: OK, OK, don't be mad at me. Goodbye, dear.
Me: (Still irritably) Good. Bye.
Is it any wonder that no one believes me, including, sometimes, myself? He's Always Civilized, Never Rages, always seems The Perfect Father in front of everyone, including myself. And I'm The Bitch. The Ingrate. That much is clear to almost anyone who sees us together - I'm the one that treats him without his due love and respect, he's the saccharine, civilized one, who always looks like he's unsuccessfully sucking up to me. It seems like that to me too - how wouldn't it?
And then I yell at the phone, after I hang up - things I shouldn't. Angry words. Curses. Things that have no reason for them - after all, hasn't he just been very nice and civilized? How is my rage then justified?
How can anything ever be justified when he almost never slips up and presents the perfect image to everyone, including myself?