A long time ago when I got stressed I’d say I needed to punch a tree. My rationale was that hitting a person would land me in a whole heap of trouble and punching a tree was less likely to get me arrested. I also found stress relief in batting cages. When every ball has your ex’s face on it, it’s fairly easy to knock them out of the park! Lion always tells me that spanking is a good way to get out frustrations. I don’t agree. If I punch a tree I get hurt. If I hit a baseball only the ball gets hurt. If I swat him, he gets hurt. Taking out my frustrations on him wouldn’t work because I’d be too worried about hurting him. That would actually add to my stress.
He says grumbling relieves his stress. Being spanked and pegged are also stress relievers for him. So what does it for me? I thought about it on the way home from work. It’s exactly the thing I was doing when he told me I wasn’t paying any attention to him. I like to play mindless computer games. Candy Crush, Angry Birds, etc. Yes, they are frustrating. Why can’t you just die you stupid pig and let me advance to the next level? But they also let my mind decompress. If the pig doesn’t die, I’ll get him the next time. No big deal. Now, I’ll admit to being addicted to these games, so I can understand if Lion doesn’t know the difference between my just-vegetating play and my I-really-need-this-so-I-don’t-kill-someone play.
I tend to grumble a bit too when I’m stressed. It doesn’t make me feel any better so I don’t know why I bother, but that dryer needs to know I’m really pissed off that it keeps beeping at me. I heard you the first three times! I think it may be another passive-aggressive way to let Lion know I’m in over my head without actually saying it. We’re working on our communication skills. I’ll add that one to my list.
The point is that one person’s stress relief is different from another person’s. His grumbling may make me feel guilty, but it’s not what he’s intending. My computer games may make Lion feel ignored, but it’s not what I’m intending. Now we know.