When I was with Siobhan (an ex girlfriend) her birthday arrived just four weeks after we had begun seeing one another. I took her away for the weekend, bought her a beautiful Tiffany bracelet, organised a huge bouquet to be delivered to the suite where we were staying in our hotel and then took her shopping for a couple of new outfits and some new shoes. She was swept off her feet. Just as I intended.
When it was her birthday a year later I didn’t give her a present and begrudgingly went for dinner with her that evening. I ensured she paid. I talked down to the waiter and insisted we leave without dessert and subjected her to silence on the drive home. I wanted to spoil her birthday because it was about her and not me. I hate attention being focussed elsewhere. My nephew told me he had come first in his school’s 100m race. I told him I ran a faster time than him when I was at school. A colleague showed me his new watch. I told him I had one which was similar but mine was better. You’ve got tickets for a performance tonight? I went last week and it was rubbish. You recommend a new Mexican restaurant that has just opened? I tell you that it is attracting the attention of environmental health. Bought a new car? I don’t like the colour and criticise its miles per gallon ratio. The thing is that these comments just spill from my mouth before I even have a chance to think. Whenever the spotlight is shining elsewhere I need to smash it and train a new one on me. My response is automatic.
If you have an important function you want to attend, I will pick a fight with you before you go and then text you incessantly whilst you are at it so you do not enjoy it. I have to ruin it for you. I cannot control this urge. Sam (an ex girlfriend) loved to garden. She would spend hours at the weekend tending her beds. I would call round during the week when she was not there and take a strimmer to her plants. As the stalks and stems were obliterated I could feel myself feeling better. I have to cut people down. From my extensive discussions with Dr O I have come to realise that this is wrong but I cannot help myself. The urge to destroy, denigrate,criticise and belittle is overwhelming.
I have to spoil. There is no hope for an alternative.