Meet my dad:
It was 1985. I was 17 and had just graduated from high school. That summer, I bought my first car with money I saved from my part-time job and from graduation gifts. It was not a fancy car. It was very basic transportation that I planned to take to college with me.
My parents had an old early-'70s Dodge as a second car that I'd been using through high school. The week I graduated from high school, the windshield wipers stopped working. As was typical for my parents, they never bothered to get the windshield wipers fixed. What this meant was that the car couldn't be driven when it was raining.
One summer evening, I was planning to pick up my boyfriend in my car and go to a movie. My mother wasn't home, so she'd taken their car. I thought my dad was in the family room, so I called out, "Bye! I'll be back after the movie," and I went out the front door. When I got outside, I saw that my car was gone. Where was my car? Then it dawned on me that it was raining.
I went back in the house and realized I was alone. My dad and brother were both gone. Where were they? Had they taken my car? Was I going to make it in time to pick up my boyfriend and get to the movie before it started?
About 15 minutes later, my dad pulled up in front of the house in my car. I was upset because a) I don't know he'd taken the car, and b) now I was late. His response: "I had to take your brother to Boy Scouts, and it was raining. I couldn't use the Dodge." I explained to him that I had plans, and now I was late. I said I wished he would have told me what he was doing before he took my car. (I could have dropped my brother off on my way to my boyfriend's house.) He blew up at me, saying that he didn't know what I expected him to do. He couldn't drive the Dodge in the rain. I said that I hoped he would talk to me about using my car rather than just taking it because I might have plans. He didn't like that and was steaming mad.
I left in a hurry, picked up my boyfriend, and we walked into the movie as it was starting. I got home later and went straight to bed.
In the morning, I found a note on the kitchen table from my dad. In a nutshell, he told me that he would never, ever use my car again. He would never, ever ask if he could use MY car. Obviously, it was MY car. And I was too selfish to share it. So, he said he planned to use the same tactic on me that he used on my mother with the living room couch. See, she got mad at him once for lying on the living room couch after he'd been outside mowing the lawn. He was all sweaty and gross, and she didn't want him to get the couch dirty. She asked him to move to another piece of furniture. (I remembered the incident because it turned into a big fight, but I didn't know the rest of the story.) In his note to me, he said he vowed from then on that he would never, ever sit on THAT couch again. And he never, ever did. Therefore, because I was so selfish about MY car, he would do the same thing with it and never, ever use it again.
Okay, Dad. Take a stand.
Don't ever sit on the couch again. Don't ever drive my car again. I took his note, got a pen, and wrote, "Fine with me," and put it on his recliner where he'd see it when he got home. He never, ever drove my car again. Indeed, he got what he said he wanted. I never said another word about it, and neither did he.