I'd love a bit of clarification on avoiding shit tests.
TLDR: How do you ignore/avoid getting sucked into an emotional, shit-testy conversation without it coming off as butt-hurt or overly rude (thus, indicating that you're also wrapped up in it)?
My wife is a stewer - when she gets mad she shuts down, goes silent, and broods, typically for about 12-24 hours.
Once that's done, she'll typically reach out, often via text, to try to engage me / get me to DEER / suck me in.
Example: My wife is a SAHM. Last night, I went to BJJ class before coming home for dinner. Got the kids ready for bed, put them down, got downstairs and started cleaning up some dishes. My wife suggested we eat together, so we hung out.
After eating, I no longer felt like doing the dishes. So I said "You know what, I'm tired. I'll do these tomorrow." To which my wife said "See? It's just like I said - you go to the gym and get all tired and can't help around the house." (A Ghost of Shit-Tests Past)
Me: "Yes, you're right. On some nights I don't do all the dishes." Her: "Well, it makes me really stressed out the next day." Me: "I'm sure it does. It can be pretty stressful." Her: "And you don't care about that?" (shocked, hurt look) Me: "I don't want you to be stressed, no."
Then, silence. I go to kiss her before a shower and she says "Don't touch me." I smirk and go take a shower and proceed to just do whatever I want the rest of the night while she mopes.
Today she texts me, trying to suck me in - "I'm pissed, so stop pretending like everything's normal and just going about your day."
Me: "I realize you're pissed. Let's talk about it tonight." Her: "Yes, let's. But you please initiate the conversation. That'll show me you actually want to have it."
Ahhh, I think to myself. I fucked up here - I'm getting sucked in. I don't take this seriously, but I've backed myself into a corner.
At the same time, if I just didn't reply to her first text - does that seem like I'm weak and avoiding conflict? Or am I just overthinking this completely?