As I've said before, this love of living in a fantasy capsule where it's just her and her idiotic thoughts about appliances, endless housework and horrible children is allied to and marches in lock-step with an almost criminal lack of awareness of how she looks and what people think. I've spent too much time talking about how a Patterson thinks that everyone everywhere thinks exactly how he or she does, knows only what he or she does and must agree that whatever stupid idea of the good, true and beautiful he or she might have is best for everyone to think anything else but that Elly clearly seems to have got it in her head that since she was distracted by Mike's presence, he must be trying to ruin her life. I also tend to think that Elly never quite managed to realize that her seething rages (that she forgets experiencing because she seems to go into a fugue state while she's exploding) and constant ultimatums (which she interprets after the fact as not being masterworks of belittling rage) convinced the boy that everything that she does is a means of punishing him for existing because she's convinced herself that he plotted against her even back when he was an embryo.
Since no one likes being punished when they've earned it, his constantly being jammed for non-existent crimes seems to have turned him against the things she wants of him. This is why he doesn't like doing chores because he sees it as punishment for having a good time. This is why he hates her cooking because he sees it as punishment for eating the sweets she denies herself because grown-ups have lost the ability to enjoy life. This is why he hates having to go outside because he sees it as punishment for wanting to stay in his own house. This is why he hates the idea of her working because her screaming about how she could be useful to the world if he hadn't tied her down makes him think that she only wants a job to punish him for even existing. To conclude, it's why he doesn't see the bright side of things; if he were to make lemons out of lemonade, she might get away with enjoying being a sadistic monster who punishes him for being alive and that just ain'ta gonna happen on his watch.
Since Elly is too stupid and vain and silly to understand that her children see doing things her way is seen as accepting her incessant punishments for made-up crimes, she hangs out with like-minded imbecile women, drinks coffee or tea and makes panicky noise about why her kids don't realize what a benevolent, calm and self-sacrificing person she actually isn't. Since Mike is too stupid to understand how much being seen as the punitive, short-tempered and intolerant asshole most people see her as being hurts her feelings, we can thus look forward to ten more years of this stupid two-step.