I've realised what's been pressing down on me for the last two weeks, stopping me from getting on with anything and making me feel drained and irritated.
It's the presence in the house of younger daughter, (aged 25). This girl is now a grown adult, and yet when in the house she persists in behaving like a stroppy teenager, complete with swearing and personal abuse.
She gave up her well paid job in accountancy at the end of October, and rented out the flat we helped her to acquire. She brought home every possession she has, other than equipment which must be left in the flat for the tenants. We had to help her with this, naturally, and find spaces to store what won't fit in her bedroom.
She spent the first week using our washing machine non-stop, and taking up every drying space in the house. I pointed out that she could have done all this in her own flat before she left it.
Then she went to Nepal for two and a half weeks to "trek", so there was a respite.
Now she is back home waiting to travel to France on Friday to spend five months working in a ski chalet.
This morning, I generously allowed her to include what she said were "whites" in my pristine white wash. The whites turned out to be mostly a filthy grey, and also to include stuff with colours of all sorts, including black, in them.
I told her that these could not be included in my white wash, but she totally refused to accept this, and started abusing me. In the end, I had to take my washing out of the machine, as she just would not back down.
After she shut her bedroom door in my face when I tried to discuss the matter, I had to communicate by text. Here's what I sent.
"I have the right to make my own decisions in my own home about my laundry arrangements. Do not interfere and certainly you do not have the right to abuse me."
Am I over-reacting?