More often than not, when I am stressed out or moody, people stop prodding me and actually go into a proactive mode to counter my moodiness. I think most of my friends do a wonderful job of this. My mom has improved a lot over the years too, but she has an unfair handicap of course, considering she is my mom, thus having a lot more experiences on dealing with me.

Tune: “All is full of love” by Bjork
Mood: A bit upset, very stressed, tired
Drink: Choko Tea


A major problem between Amber and I is that she is not consistently in my face all the time. We rely on the internet to get our ideas and feelings across which time and again have proven to be ineffective. However, after my trip to Germany for two weeks, less than a week ago, I had a spark of hope that things would be a bit different. I was hoping that for me being there and showing her a side of me there, she would be able to pick up the other side of me instead of looking at who I was online on the internet. I was also hoping that after going through 1.5 years of communication struggles, she should have by now been able to tactfully recognize when my mood changes and through good timing, react accordingly. Alas, today’s latest episode has once again proven that all of what I have done is for naught.

I have been dealing with a lot of crap the last few days which causes me stress as most of you already know. Amber also knows this. It’s just that, she didn’t realize I was going through this today, until it was too late. The problem is that I already mentioned I was moody. Instead of being productive on what I asked for, she continued a game of Ping Pong with me and from there, it just got worst and worst and worst and then it hit rock bottom when she told me her feelings reverted back to ‘normal’ from before I went to Germany.

I just flew a rough total of 17,000 kilometers forfeiting my work for 2 weeks, spending about a total of $1500, walked my feet to death, catering to most of her needs while brushing my own pride away, meeting her family right off the bat without much preparation, then travel back to Canada with a total of about 45 hours of sleepless train and plane rides to go see her. My ‘reward’? Her feelings are reverted back to before I went to Germany. Talk about taking difficult things for granted.

Honestly, I cannot forgive her for saying that, just like when she told me I was no longer her knight from a few weeks ago, but just a man. I have forgiven a lot over the years. It took many years for some. I just have a very vengeful heart. Even my mom recognizes this and has told me on a few occasions before.

In some ways, it’s ‘good’ that she can be honest with me without tact and timing to hinder that honesty. On the other hand, she is very robotic with the way she is. Which actually makes me react that way too. The difference being that once she becomes that way, I have learned to become neutral instead of negative right off the bat. Today was such a test to see what she would do. Like I said, I had hope for the first time that she may bounce up and do what I’ve suggested that she does in the past, but she didn’t and flopped downwards.

I did however tell her that she did nothing wrong. She did exactly what I expected her to, what she did almost every other time. However, this isn’t saying I am perfect myself. I am also perfectly myself. On many occasions, I have reacted the exact way as I always had and that was being analytical and questioning when what I should have done was be more sensitive and considerate. I think on some level, I have improved but I still need work. However, when I look at Amber, she still hasn’t improved on her sensitivity and consideration much. I asked myself just now: “Should she even bother trying?”

I have always believed that people should be themselves, even if that meant hurting the other person. My idea is simple: if the other person cannot accept you for who and what you are, then they will make the decision to leave. When I decided to alter myself, I did it because I didn’t want to cause the other person grief and hope to better our relationship without changing too much of myself. Now that I look back at all of this, I must have a lot of tolerance and patience or maybe I have an infinite ‘amount’ of love for her. It’s probably both or possibly that I am a weak retarded bastard with a very low self-esteem. Actually, both ends of this spectrum can still be true.

Every single time a problem comes up, it always ends up as me being ‘the monster’ who started it all. It always ends up as me who is the bad guy, the asshole, the fucktard, the bastard who hurts her. Yet, she never sees that she is sparking the misery. No no of course not. I am always at fault. I am always wrong. I am the problem maker. I am the only one digging myself a grave.

I remember a time when people respected my words and knew how to tactfully and through good timing for the most part, maneuvered around the heated conversations with me, as I also knew how to do that. Yet why is it that with Amber, this always happens?

1) Ping Pong Shit:
Imagine the entire morning, we talk about building a web site together and think up some domain names. We talked about this topic the day before as well. Then a few hours later, she comes online and I ask her between two web site themes, which does she like OR if she would pick something else. It takes her forever to load the themes due to her constipated internet connection. So I suggest we talk about it another time. I am of course irritated that she can’t load them up and it’s taking forever, but I am calm and not mad at her for having a shitty internet she has no control over.

She insisted that it’s almost finished loading and so I went silent. Then she told me her opinion of the two themes. I gave my own input and told her that her opinion isn’t helping.

Eventually, she finally pointed out my strange behavior. My words were harsher, more blunt, more distant. This was due to the fact I am dealing with work stress and other stress. This is a common occurrence that has happened in the past multiple times and in those multiple times, I’ve told her how she can help me deal with it. I also told her that we shouldn’t have talked about the themes if she had no intention to brainstorm ideas with me.

At this point, her logic was that since I told her that we can talk about it another time, she thought giving her opinion of the two themes was ‘enough’ and then leave it as that.

Now, in my logic, that doesn’t make a damn sense. If I told her we will talk about it another time, then [drum roll] we will talk about it another time. End of story. If I said we will talk about it another time, but she lets it load up and give her opinion, then it means she wants to talk about it and therefore, we should brainstorm our web site ideas. You don’t give one half of the story, then stop. That’s like showing up at a work meeting and giving half your notes to the staff. Sorry honey, it doesn’t work that way.

Our argument took off from here. I explained to her how her logic doesn’t make sense and that if she recognized my moodiness at the start, she could have easily steered it away from all of this mess.

2) Turning an obvious problem into a productive topic – Scenario A
Imagine the entire morning, we talk about building a web site together and think up some domain names… So I suggest we talk about it another time… She insisted that it’s almost finished loading and so I went silent. Then she told me her opinion of the two themes. I gave my own input and told her that her opinion isn’t helping.

She would have asked why her opinion isn’t helping and I will repeat what I said earlier: “I need help. This theme OR this theme OR something else?”

At this point in time, she would pick up the strange behavior and ask: “Is work getting you down? Are you stressed from that or something else?”

In which I would tell her that it’s mainly with work and that I was hoping she could help me on what to do with our web site. Then on cue, reading the words: “I was hoping she could help me on what to do with our web site” she would automatically tell me some of her own ideas. At this point, my stress levels would have started to ease off as I read what she has to say about our own shared web site. We would shoot ideas back and forth until she is tired and goes to bed and my stress levels would have gone down considerably because we did something fun together.

3) Turning an obvious problem into a productive topic – Scenario B
Imagine the entire morning, we talk about building a web site together and think up some domain names… So I suggest we talk about it another time… She would have picked up my ‘off’ behavior from earlier and say something like: “Sorry, I don’t know why my internet is still so bad. We can talk about this another day, but do you still want to talk about the web site minus the themes?” Which I would have reacted positively because she is showing me that she really cares about the shared web site and so I would tell her what is on her mind and we’ll shoot ideas back and forth until she gets tired.

4) Turning an obvious problem into a productive topic – Scenario C
Imagine the entire morning, we talk about building a web site together and think up some domain names… So I suggest we talk about it another time… She would have picked up my ‘off’ behavior from earlier and say something like: “Sorry, I don’t know why my internet is still so bad. We can talk about this another day, but I do want to talk to you about our web site. Just not tonight. I’m too tired right now.”

At this point, I would be a bit above being neutral and be more concerned of her own well being than focus on my own stress.


Unfortunately, we didn’t come close to any of the last three scenarios and I am quite disappointed right now.

Specifically to Amber: The key issue from all of this is that you always either react negatively or you almost always have zero tact when there is a hint of ‘off’ behavior from me. You almost never react in a proactive manner, nor do you ever react in a way that helps the situation. You almost always react in a way that makes the situation worst, then bounce it back at me thinking I am the one creating the problems. ALL things have a cause and effect. Why don’t you stop for a moment one day and think about the cause, before you proclaim I am the one causing the problems. What you think I enjoy ‘causing’ problems? Oh yeah, I love to add stress on top of stress. I love fucking myself up.

There are two causes to my stress and that is work and finances primarily. My strange behavior is caused by 1) that stress and 2) your internet greetings to me being distant. I try to counter #2 with neutrality. When you get a hint of my off behavior, there is obviously OBVIOUSLY something wrong. Since stress is eternal, then something else must be causing it. If you seriously think I am causing all these problems, then we have nothing more to talk about. I’ll let you think about this for a few days.

Anyway, I’m going to bed. I’ll be fasting in 15 minutes for 13 hours for my medical exams tomorrow. Wish me good fortune that I don’t have some terminal illness.

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    To my readers, I have to apologize for our relationship woes being expressed on my blog, but I feel I need to address her points from a private entry she made. I also feel by expressing them here, those with similar problems can reflect and help them in theirs.


    Amber said: In your entry you said that my ‘distant’ greeting was a bad start. I honestly did not know that ‘herro’ – which is something that you say all the time (even if not to me that much) will be perceived as distant in a negative way.

    The word in itself is not a bad start. It is the pattern of what you have been saying for the last few days leading up to this point. Let’s put it this way: if I have a family member who for 17 days smiled at me every time I walked into his room and said “Hey Lee, good to see you!” but on the 18th day when I walked into his room, he says “Hey”, don’t you think I would notice the change in his pattern of greetings?

    Amber said: When I read that (about your spider senses) I brushed it aside immediately and told you that I was fine. I told myself: yes, this day and work has gotten me quite sore, I had a painfully stiff neck because that when that car almost hit me I turned my head to look at it in some weird way or too quickly and I don’t feel that good but now I am talking to Lee and I can as well pull myself together and not make it more complicated, brush my moodiness aside.

    If I ask if there is something wrong, then I am asking if there is something wrong and you should tell me. It ALWAYS makes things worst when you withhold information from me. So what made you think this time would be any different? I always said that in person, you can go ahead and hide things because I can clearly see that there is a problem and I can react accordingly. On the internet, I ONLY have words to react to. I cannot see you. I cannot hear you. So what do I have to go on? Words.

    Amber said: Maybe I should have just asked more, asked you about what the two of you talked about, but looking back, it seems as you were not particularly interested in it.

    You assumed too much. I am always interested in sharing with you my conversations with other people. I believe I have told you this before on various occasions.

    Amber said: I honestly thought it would be a little more like the other times we worked on something. For instance my portfolio. You would ask me certain things, like name, appearance, things I want. Then I would tell you. Then you would set things up and show me. Then I would ask you for little changes. Then we might talk about it some more, you would ask me for other details. Isn’t that how it is normally done?

    If this was an interview for a job, then yes, the usual pattern would be done, but this wasn’t an interview for a job. Do you expect your lover or friends or other members of your family to ask interviewer questions to get things going? Imagine at the dinner table with your family and the only thing people talk about are answering questions.

    You: So how is everyone?
    Jon: Good.
    Me: Not bad.
    You: So what did you do today?
    Jon: Had sex with my wife then took the dog out.
    Me: Had sex with you then took the cat out.
    You: What do you two want to do today?
    Jon: Play some golf.
    Me: Have sex with you.

    Not too engaging is it? You may argue that this is about discussing about a web site, but the problem is still this: I am not working on the web site as a work project. You are not the client. The web site is OURS. So I expect that we would both have equal input and equal criticism.

    Amber said: What I did instead then after I noticed you did not seem satisfied was that I asked you stuff and tried to have conversations about silly things, like the licorice. And even though I felt the need to share the story about me and the car with you very badly, I did not because that would have made it worse.

    I noticed that already. However, when you were doing all that, I thought: “So badly timed.” Yes Amber, imagine Ancient Rome fighting a massive battle with Ancient Greece and some guy throws a small birthday party off to the side. You seriously think that the two massive armies will suddenly stop and celebrate a birthday?

    Amber said: Do you know why I said that I like avett? I was hoping that you would pick it up and we talk again about it. I would have told you that we could give it a chance because in a different colour this themes is elegant and it does not distract so much from the actual posts. But you only brushed me aside.

    This is an example of what brainstorming looks like:

    Me: So what do you think of A theme and B theme or do you have something else in mind?
    You: I like B theme more because it has lighter colours and it goes well with the minimalistic look. A theme looks too much like Twitter and FB.
    Me: Okay, so we’re going for a minimalistic look? Sounds good. I also like the colours in B theme, but I don’t like the theme very much because it’s not blog-friendly.
    You: I’ll go and take a look again.
    (comes back)
    You: Yeah, I can see why. The footer has too many things. What sort of things do you think we’ll post on there?
    Me: Galleries, videos, posts and other similar stuff. All about you and I and our future family and friends.
    You: I also thought we…

    This is an example of what brainstorming IS NOT:

    Me: So what do you think of A theme and B theme or do you have something else in mind?
    You: I like B theme.
    Me: Okay.

    Amber said: I really wonder why you stick with the ‘she is making me stand there like the ass’ -idea.

    Did you not say all the problems is caused by me? Yes I read your entire post already and understood what you meant now, but when you said all the problems are caused by me, then you are saying that I am an asshole who is creating problems.

    Amber said: You might not notice but this was very very hurtful. What you said about focusing on me was positive but the other part felt like a knife in my heart.

    I did it on purpose, because our conversation was already rock bottom. You were prodding me with an endless supply of making me feel like the usual asshole again. Since it seemed I wasn’t doing a good job of pushing you off, I stung you back with that comment. I could have easily just said I deleted her off my phone, but I added that little bit at the end to sting you a bit. However, even if I didn’t mention it, that is one half of the reason why I removed her. I will tell you the other half in private.

    Amber said: I hesitate to tell you this, because I acknowledge that you were in a bad mood yesterday, but you could have also changed it. Honestly, when you notice I am not on the right track of dealing with you, instead of pushing me further away and testing me, why don’t you help me go on the right track?

    You already know I am a very proud person. When people throw pie at me, I stand tall, even if I am running away. When people are giving away free magazines, I often times show indifference and walk pass the greed of others. When there is petty cash to be made, I often find it demeaning for me to sign up for offers just so I can get a little pocket change.

    With you, I already lowered my pride on many occasions. Our conversation yesterday was no different. I mentioned that when I picked up your moodiness, I neutralized my attitude. Sure, you weren’t moody as you said, but I picked it up that way. So with that said, what makes you think that after giving you a ton of chances to help steer this back up and continue to help dig this grave deeper for me, that I will be able to shed away that build up of hurt pride and hurt feelings and help you steer us back up?

    Imagine this:

    You: (beats me down with a bat then kicks my face accidentally)
    Me: (I get hurt)
    You: (beats me down again with a bat then kicks my face again accidentally)
    Me: (I try to crawl back up but fall down again)
    You: I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to.
    Me: (I try to crawl back up but…)
    You: (beats me down again with a bat then kicks my face again accidentally)
    Me: You’re doing a very bad job of accidental accidents.

    Amber said: I am disappointed that you were not able to cheer me up’ No, you persisted on how I fell back into my old way of behaving. Have you ever thought that you did just the same? What have I done? I did not behave the right way to help you and ease you off, right? Then what did you do? Analyse the whole situation, over and over again. Spent hours on talking how I failed.

    Really? Let’s look at WHAT I DID then shall we?

    1) At the start of MSN, I asked why you were grumpy and moody. You basically said nothing.
    2) I mentioned that I had thought something was up, but you insisted there was nothing.

    – wrong move. Again.

    3) Earlier, we texted each other about our web site. I set it up as I told you in MSN and needed brainstorming help. So I asked you to help me.
    4) I also asked you what you thought of the two themes as well as your own ideas.

    – it took you a very long time to load them up, so…

    5) I suggested we talk about it another day. Which would have lead to Scenario C.

    – but since it didn’t go to any of those scenarios or any other possible more positive scenarios, I was lead astray into a downward spiral of being annoyed, pissed off and more stressed.

    So don’t tell me I didn’t try to do anything. I did what I could do being in the cesspool of stress I was already in. No where in our conversation afterward did you do anything to steer us away. You kept insisting that my logic was off and that I was causing the problem.

    Amber said: I got to know the other side of Leeman during your trip and it helped a lot. However, I said the feeling has reset –for the moment–. Bet you did not read that part.

    I did read it. I just did not acknowledge it.

    Amber said: I only hope that you understand why I wrote this entry, that you are relaxed enough to read it carefully and don’t see it as an attack.

    I wasn’t fighting with you yesterday. My mood was fucked up, but my ‘voice’ was calm. I was annoyed and I was angry at moments, but I was not yelling. I didn’t think your post was you attacking me. I always referred to what I wrote on my sticky note: “When Amber seem attacking me, ask for clarity. Do not blow up.”

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