I recently posted about reaching an apparently new parenting stage, where I feel like I am losing the loving, caring, sharing beautiful, kind, thoughtful kids I have so enjoyed up to now. I didn’t see this change coming, although I should have, since they are now both in high school. I know this is when things really change, but I guess things were so fantastic that I just never considered I would lose them, the ‘them’ they have been.
Today, I took my daughter to the doctor cuz she is having a hard time getting over this cold she has. She’s had it for over 3 weeks now, and was complaining of pressure in her ears, and has been coughing a lot. While there, we asked for prescriptions of the samples she had gotten on her last visit, for her year-long allergy-like symptoms. We couldn’t remember the name, and the doctor had neglected to write it in her chart (Duh! what kind of doc doesn’t write what meds are given to a patient??!!) , so my daughter was trying to look it up in her history on her computer. I came over to see if I could help her, and she pushes me away saying ‘i don’t want you to look, i don’t want you over here. i hate it when you look like that’. I was soooo soo so hurt, I started crying and could barely finish the appointment. I was also very angry. Like triggered angry. Like I can’t trust her anymore with the real me. Because now she is just like everyone else. Now, she is just another person, just like everyone else. Just like everyone else who only wants to use you, to get from you what they can, and they trick you and make you think you can trust them, that they won’t hurt you. But they are always lying. The only thing they want is what you can give them. They only keep you around for that, and in the meantime, treat you like dirt, disrespect you, and otherwise show you how worthless you are, except for what they want from you. As soon as they want something, and you give it, then they shower you with adoration and happy giddiness. Until that wears off. Then you are worthless dirt once again.
My son is proceeding on his conversion to Mormon. My ex says to let him act out (we are non religious), because what more clear way of having teenage rebellion than to join a conservative religion when from a family that is non religious. I saw some sense in that, and so did not try to convince him to rethink his decisions, choices. But now, he is moving ahead with being baptized this coming Saturday–all of which is a prelude to the final step of total conversion afterward. I am not against any belief system or philosophy, but I am concerned that he is making life-altering decisions when he is not yet an adult, and that he does not really and fully understand this religion (or any other), and thus is unprepared to make a knowledgeable decision about this. But again, I am not supposed to say anything. But I am supposed to give my permission, and I am supposed to show him support, even when I don’t want to give it, and allow this to play out —for what? for a month? for a year? or for several years? or forever? How am I a good parent by allowing this to happen? And how am I good parent not to? Whatever I do, I am wrong. Whatever I do, will push him further away from me, from how I raised him. Whatever I do, I am a bad parent. I am not even necessary to him anymore, and he isn’t even grown up yet. All he needs me for now is food, clothes and shelter. And for me to tell him I’m happy for him making these decisions. He doesn’t want to hear what I have to say, to get input, advice, to play devil’s advocate. But he still expects me to listen. And expects me not to talk.
So you see, I was right for all those years. I was right that I am worthless. That I’m just dirt people let hang around for whenever they think they can get something from it. All my life, every person in it, has been this way. I have never had a true friend, or a true partner. I thought my kids would be the ones that I could trust with my heart. The ones who would never shove me aside, crush me, and hurt me so. I thought that if they were the ones, the ones I could really trust, that maybe that meant that I wasn’t trash/dirt/nothing. I thought maybe that meant all those other people who have been part of my life were the ones who were wrong. That they were the ones who nothing, who can only cause hurt and suffering to others, and that I was not the one in the wrong, the one who deserved to be treated like that. But I was wrong. I now see that even your own kids, who you have sacrificed your entire life to give them every benefit, every resource, who love you purely because you are you, will toss you to the curb, discard you as soon as they get the chance. So, I was right to begin with. I am worthless. I am dirt. I am nothing. I no longer exist. I wish I’d never thought that I could.