Why is he getting so angry at me all the time, and is he justified or is he being unreasonable?

Ok, my longterm boyfriend and I (5 years) both do a lot of freelance writing work outside of our regular 9 to 5 jobs. Well, to be honest, usually he is the one with a lot of extra work on, and I'm kind of left to carry the can with the rest of our lives.
The situation will often be that he has an urgent deadline and extra work in the evenings/on weekends, and that I will do the laundry, cook the food, wash the dishes, shop for groceries, clean the house etc etc. I haven't resented this, because we balance it out ie., if he has earnt more money while I have done more housework, he will buy the groceries that week instead of splitting it, and also because we make sure we get time together outside of work. It switches around, but we generally try to keep things even and happy.

Anyway, last weekend and this weekend I have been the one with a huge freelance job on, one giving me enough of a bonus for an early deadline (an extra $5k on top of the original amount) that I had already discussed it with my boyfriend, we had decided that even with the crazy deadline I should go ahead with it, and that to make up for him having to carry the rest of the responsibilities during that time I would use part of the bonus to buy the new furniture/paint we had been planning on splitting.

The problem is that although when we talked about it, and when I now ask about it he says it's "fine", I'm getting a lot of passive agressiveness, resentment, and anger off him. He's getting really angry about the tiniest thing, and also getting very defensive about other things, for instance not having done any of the chores.

I haven't asked/"nagged" him about them, but after a week of dishes piling up I did them myself, and after a week of reheated leftovers, take away and 2 minute noodles and eventually an empty fridge I went to the store and bought the groceries. When he noticed he got really angry and said he was going to do that, and I shouldn't have interfered, and I was just trying to make him feel guilty.

Thing is, he might feel guilty, but I went out of my way not to do any of that guilt trip meaningful-looks-and-annoyed-sighs crap because he pulls it on me a lot. I just needed food, and plates to eat it off, so I handled it myself since no one else was going to do it. If he feels guilty and defensive for not having done it... maybe thats because he didn't do it.

Anyway, so tonight he cooked dinner after getting angry at me about all that yesterday, but during dinner he kept coming into the study where I was working and saying things like "so, the vegetables are cooking", and then leaving. Then returning and saying "just put the meat on" and then leaving. Then coming back and saying "I'm putting mustard with the potatoes" and then leaving. Eventually, thinking he must want me to help, that I could use a break, and that I wasn't getting any work done with all the interruptions I went out to see how things were going.

He took my presence in the kitchen really badly and kept getting really cranky over things. If I offered to turn the meat I was interfering. If I asked how long the vegetables had been on I was calling him a bad cook. But if I just stood there it was "why aren't you helping? Oh yeah, more important things to do..." It was ridiculous! I tried to explain that I was just taking a break and wanted to cook WITH him and hang out a little, but he said "FINE, you can cook then!" and stormed out.

It felt like he resented me not doing the cooking, and was therefore going to passive agressively harass me with food-updates, but when I actually came out to help he got angry at me because he thought it implied he couldn't handle cooking.

I don't care! I in no way meant to offend him, and I'm pretty sure I was acting normally and nicely. I was making an EFFORT to act normally and nicely after those interruptions, thinking he must just really want some us-time and feel like I was neglecting him. But he wouldn't talk to me, and after 5 minutes in the kitchen I actally did want to get mad at him because of the way he was acting!
I just feel like he's having a massive tantrum because for once he's meant to be doing the boring chores, instead of me doing most of them.

I can't tell if I'm being over-sensitive because I'm stressed out, but I do know I've been making a special effort not to sound tense or anything when I talk to him, and to make sure I have some normal hang out time with him, without work butting in.
Adversely, he seems to be making no effort whatsoever to help me out, in the way that I usually help him out.
All he's doing is getting angry at me. I tried talking to him about it, and he just gets angrier and says that it's me, not him. Or "how dare I accuse him" when it's actually me. Or other things along those lines. I've tried to suggest that if he really doesn't feel like it, cool, the house can get a bit messier for a couple weeks til we can both give it a good clean. Which is apparently accusing him of laziness.

I just think that nothing that has happened is that big a deal, but he's multiplying everything through a haze of resentment, but wont let me make anything better. I try and talk really calmly but everything I say makes it worse, and I somehow say something offensive. Meanwhile, nothings getting done; not my work or the chores! :(

EDIT: Apparently I can't say c h o r e s, lol, maybe it is a dirty word afterall! :P
By ProbablyPushy 14 years ago :: Dating
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