Seven-Question Quiz

A Seven-Question Quiz on Domestic Tranquility

Or

Republican Policies Considered as an Abusive Relationship

by Vonda N. McIntyre

  1. Do you watch what you are doing in order to avoid making your partner angry or upset?
  2. Of course. I always agree with him. It’s my place to agree with him. He’s right to be angry with me when I argue or disobey.

  3. Do you feel obligated or coerced into having sex with your partner?
  4. I don’t understand the question. It’s my duty always to behave in a way that pleases my husband.

    I only wish he would tell me I look nice once in a while. I try to look nice for him but even when he picks out my clothes, he says I look like a slut.

  5. Does your partner check up on what you have been doing, and not believe your answers?
  6. At my previous job, my boss came on to me in the lab. I said No. He pushed me against the wall. I managed to get away. He yelled that I was a tease, and threatened to fire me because what else was I good for?

    I thought I’d done good work. I thought I was an asset to the lab.

    I went to the department head. He said my boss was much more important than I am, and I must have led him on so it was my fault, and the only reason I had a job was because my boss went to bat for me. I should be grateful to him and never mention the incident again.

    My research has been published in peer-reviewed journals and confirmed again and again.

    I thought I was an asset to the lab.

    I asked my husband for advice. He called me a tease, accused me of sleeping with my boss to get my job in the first place, and beat me up.

    He says my research is wrong because if it were applied to his business, it would cost his company and his friends a lot of money.

    I thought I was an asset to the lab.

    I had to quit my job and it was hard to find a new one because my husband doesn’t like me to leave the house. When I do he accuses me of cheating on him.

  7. Do you feel that nothing you do is ever good enough for your partner?
  8. I’m a big disappointment to him, and it’s my fault.

    When I was between labs, my husband told me I should get the only job I was good for: flipping burgers. I wasn’t pulling my weight for our household. I had been making more money than he, but when I was unemployed I was nothing but a burden. He said I would never get another good job because I was too stupid and didn’t deserve it and my research wasn’t any good.

    My being unemployed put a lot of stress on him so you can’t blame him for getting angry.

  9. Does your partner control the family finances?
  10. Twenty years ago, he decided how much the household should cost to run. For a long time I was able to make do. But things cost more now and the household account stays the same.

    We can’t spend money on the upkeep of our house or our children’s education or preventive health care because we might max out our credit cards. The driveway is full of potholes, our youngest son has a funny cough, and the refrigerator is empty.

    Sometimes when I don’t have enough money for food, our children cry because they’re hungry. They aren’t allowed to cry, so my husband has to discipline them. I’m an incompetent mother and our children would be better off in a richer family’s home.

    When I asked my husband for more household money, he slapped me and said: What’s his is his, and what’s mine is his because I have to pay him back for supporting the household all by himself while I was unemployed.

    He spends more money than we have on foreign adventures. I approve of his borrowing to pay for them, because the adventures are important.

    My husband’s friend had a treasure map. The treasure was on our property, so my husband and I and our kids helped him dig up our back yard. The friend took the treasure away. I thought he might share it with us, since we helped retrieve it, but after all he owned the map. I’m worried about the muddy puddle he left behind. We can’t afford to fill it in.

    Starting next week I have to get by with less because our friends want more money. He’s going to give them ours, and borrow some more to give to them. They deserve it because they are rich and work very hard and when they are rich enough, they say, they’ll help us out. I’m sure this is true.

    The puddle smells bad. The smell gives me headaches, and our son is coughing blood. I want to take him to the doctor but it costs too much.

  11. Does your partner threaten to harm you?
  12. He only does it because I need the discipline. But sometimes I’m afraid he might harm our children.

    Sometimes I’m afraid his business might harm the world – that’s what my research suggests — but I have to believe him when he says his business is fine and my research is wrong. It’s my duty to believe him and support him.

  13. Does your partner abuse you and then promise it will never happen again?
  14. You shouldn’t ask that question. It’s my fault, and if I would do a better job of giving him what he wants, he would treat me better.


    Copyright © 2011 Vonda N. McIntyre


    DreamsnakeVonda N. McIntyre is a founding member of Book View Café.

    DreamsnakeThe Moon and the Sun, and The Starfarers Quartet are now available as ebooks at Book View Café. Starfarers is available free for a limited time.

    For autographed print copies of The Moon and the Sun and my other SF novels, visit my website’s Basement Full of Books.

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Comments

Seven-Question Quiz — 9 Comments

  1. Well, there are some Democrats who are not in abusive relationships with the Tea Party, but they don’t seem to control the state party. The Texas Dems seem to think being Republican Lite will get them elected, but it certainly hasn’t worked lately.

  2. This is devastating and apt and I find myself wishing you could cross-post this on Huffington Post or on some other high-profile political site. I really have no idea how all that works but I do think you deserve to reach a wide audience with your political commentary — it cuts through the fog beautifully.

  3. This is an excellent satire about the republican party. I wonder why crony capitalism, a severe recession, two wasteful wars and environmental degradation did not result in the spineless “wife” leaving her “abusive husband”.

  4. Because if she only would behave properly, everything would be better. I don’t think it’s a matter of spinelessness. (If she were spineless, she’d have run away long ago.)

    It’s a matter of having a particular world view drummed in.

    It’s always going to get better. Tomorrow. If you work hard enough. If you give enough breaks to the abusive partner. If you forgive and forget enough times. If the partner gets to spend all the money and some “trickles down.”

    It’s a particularly perverted world view.

    –V.

  5. Well done. The answer to the questions got worse and worse as it went on. In fact, my stomach was tense and upset as I was reading. A very visceral response.

    Keep on writing, PLEASE.