When do we determine if a complaint is just a complaint, or a cry for help?

What I mean is this……

When we text our husband and tell him that today, managing a toddler that pees on the floor and an infant that has an ear infection is almost unmanageable? And he responds that he’s already paid for golf, so he can’t cancel now?

He assumes you’re just having a bad day, and that your complaint is only a complaint, and not a cry for help?

Or when you text a family member to joke “want to come over?”, when you know full certain that this said family member will most definitely not come over, due to being “very busy today” doing stuff that you think is dumb stuff, but that secretly you would give your right arm at this point to be able to muddle around luxuriously doing this “dumb stuff” instead of lugging around a crying, snotty 22lb sack of sand all day long?

The family member gives you the standard canned “pep talk” (soon they’ll be 16 and you’ll wonder where the time went, I’m sure the Advil will kick in soon, I didn’t have any help when I was your age etc) and you reply that you were “only kidding, you’re doing fine, just complaining” and that your asking them to come over and help has turned into a joke so to deflect the real disappointment that they can’t detect your cry for help.

Responses like these always make you reevaluate the difficulty of your situation (it can’t be that hard, or else they truly would sense it and come to my rescue), and you reach, for the 50th time today, into the seemingly bottomless pit of your reserve of patience, and pull out a bit more, just to make it through the next few hours.

Reading over this, it all seems quite melodramatic.

But trust me, in the moment, while one can’t be soothed and the other has locked herself in the bathroom, and you’re surviving on stale triscuits and cold coffee, it tends to feel like the end of the world.

There’s my complaint for the day. Trust me, that’s all this is….a complaint.

Xox Me

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