No worries there. Mrs. Hold's complaints lately are along the lines that I ignore her, spend no time with her, etc. So these days I am not doing anything in the hope "she will follow".

We no longer fight about sex, as I have given up on initiating.

If I had to guess, I think she applied for the contest to get herself into shape for her next relationship. I am happy to accept the "benefits" in the interim.

She complained when she heard me saying "I love you" to my father on New Year's Day. She complained that I never say it to her anymore. I told her I stopped because I felt disrespected whenever I said it. She always reacted in a way that indicated she felt it was immature to be overly romantic. She then mocked the tone of voice I used when I said I love you to my Dad. I replied "see, you mock me for being vulnerable, so I stopped being vulnerable around you".

She said it had been 10 years since I was romantic toward her. I asked her "what about the time I made you the book of shared memories for Valentine's Day? Or the time I wrote I love you in lipstick on the bathroom mirror for our anniversary? Or the time I made you rose petal ice cream from scratch? All of those happened here in CT, which means that happened within the past 7 years. And in none of those cases did you give me any indication that you appreciated the romantic gestures, so I eventually stopped making the effort." That quieted her down.

And yes, at this point I would rather be right than be intimate.

The other thing we fought about lately was vacations. She kept pestering me to sign up for a vacation with the kids in April. Every day she looked up cruises and dude ranches and bugged me to sign up for one. Despite that they each cost thousands of dollars we don't have. I kept telling her that we have outstanding credit card debt and I don't feel comfortable incurring a big expense. Especially since it is S11's Bat Mitzvah next fall, so we will rack up more debt for that. Mrs. Hold was very disappointed. I suggested that if she wants vacations, she needs to pay for them herself. Or help me pay down our debts. She went ballistic. I told her she doesn't have to get a job but I am tired of being treated as a failure because I can't pay for fancy vacations.

Last weekend we went to Home Depot to get some hardware to install a shelf in S14's room. She walked up to the kitchen remodelling department and said "look, new cabinets are only $75 per month, we can afford that". I replied "that is just cabinets. Would you be happy if we only did that, or would you insist we also get new countertops and appliances?" She said of course if we get new cabinets we need to get new everything, which she estimates would cost $250 per month. I told her I can't afford any of it, and certainly not all of it. Needless to say, she was in a pissy mood the rest of the day. Needless to say, I spent much of the day playing PS3 and ignoring her.

When you can see it coming, duck!