In the book The Bluest Eye Pauline is Cholly's wife. He is a drunk and abusive husband. Paulie has to manage her life without much help from him. They have an unhealthy relationship. In order to provide meaning in her life Pauline has identified herself as the one appointed to provide consequences for Cholly's drinking ways.
Whenever Cholly has a night of drunkenness he comes home and passes out. Pauline always responds by starting a fight with him to let him know what he had done wrong. She even pours water on him when he is sleeping.
Pauline's actions lead to a physical fight between them. He hits, beats, bites, and kicks her. She throws things at him and hits him with objects. She does not cower down to him. This gives her a sense of self and meaningfulness.
Pauline only knows the way of life in which she lives. In order to have some degree of satisfaction in her life which she has no intention of changing, she has to provide a purpose for her life, even if it seems something as strange as being Cholly's adversary.