Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I am ever so tired of the subject, but continuing it here...

aka An Accidental Summation

Wow, 'tis the week, huh? Seems that nobody has a sense of humor anymore. Or some people had awful step mothers they never got over.

And nobody this week understands crass as an artistic license. I am a firm believer that if you don't like a blog, then just don't read 800 posts over 5 days.

Thanks to you, Kellie, for having a clue.

However, O Perfect One, I didn't request nasty from you and I was so far from cruel or indifferent with L that it boggles the mind. I not only tried to be with/help her, I tried to provide support to her father, but I will admit to being pretty fucking sick of the dynamics by the end. I'd thought that P(is for pussy) might regroup and come at it again from a better perspective. I thought he might learn something. I was wrong.

You are putting me in the very awkward position of having to defend us all against your read of my rants. I don't want to defend P(is for pussy) right now or discuss L further, but I will, because I really feel like you misread me and my intentions. First lesson: do not read me literally. Almost everything is tongue in cheek. When I say self-centered, it is a joke, because I am the opposite. I fucking live for others way too much, often to my own detriment. I am one patient mofo - in person, not in blog. Secondly, a rant gets things off my chest in a seemingly safe place and it releases my frustration so I can go on. Lastly, I am an excellent poker player; nobody, except for paid professionals, IRL knew my cards and that's why they were revealed here.

I am not going to cover all your accusations, because so many are hooey. I didn't treat L as if she were worthless, because for a long time I thought she had potential and that I could make a difference drawing her out. That didn't feed my ego, because it was much too stressful to feed anything but high blood pressure; that was trying to help a teenager in need. Once I saw how little influence I had in her life (my awakening at Xmas, seeing her father, grandmother, and meth-head cousin, plus add to that her mother and other grandmother, goth boyfriends etc) and it didn't matter squat what I did. Your mistake is giving me more power that I had. My power is in the written word and trying to make readers understand what is happening under the roof next door. My power isn't choosing to make that all pretty, because it isn't.

The audacity of a lurker, particularly operating in hindsight and with a condensed reading schedule of at least 50 hours over the last week, is plumb amazing to me. Why weren't you using that time to be, oh, perfect or something someplace else where it mattered? See, around here, it doesn't matter anymore. Where were you 18 months ago after her suicidal gesture to get all my ducks in a row way back then? Surely your wisdom provides you the foresight, or at least a crystal ball, to do all the right things to make everything all better.

Suicidal gesture, not "gesture," is the clinical term for her breaking skin with no other damage - something she did routinely before I met her, too, because before the gesture (a clinical term, not a pronouncement about it, only made clinical that time because of a note) night I'd noticed her scars and asked P(is for pussy), who said she'd been in therapy. I accepted that, but had no idea how it would serve to impact my life.

Don't blame her continuing issues on me. They pre-existed me. I honestly believe you can't blame all her issues on her father, either. A long time reader here used the phrase, "You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear," a couple times regarding this situation. I have finally embraced that phrase as being succinct and descriptive a summary as I'll find; I tried to craft something out of them, but I am no magician. I am a very talented person, can master almost everything I try, but I could not master or better them. They are wounded and I was not the cause and cannot be the cure. I now have much needed boundaries. That is where my lesson needs to be - erecting my own walls, not living in a glass house.

Further, I kinda think that someone who reads/tries to apply all the books pertaining to cutting and teenaged girls and female bullying is SHOWING HOW MUCH SHE CARES! I was not in the forefront with her - I didn't live with her; I was trying to direct P(is for pussy) from the wings and be the rational one, as he was understandably pretty traumatized by her and I don't blame him. Sure, she's a kid, but don't you think Eric H.arris and Dylan Kle.bold's parents reacted with some horror about their own kids? Parents don't necessarily know what's brewing beneath the surface. We did look through her bathroom and office for razor blades and cutting instruments, but we didn't hire a drug-sniffing or switchblade-finding dog. Oops, our oversight!

We'd only been going out about 10 months by the suicidal gesture, so I had no idea what she was capable of, what trauma already lay in her psyche, what would be next. Jesus, how many of my own therapy hours did I waste on her? How much advice from a CHILD PSYCHOLOGIST did I get and try to use on her and him? Honestly, I wasn't flying blind. I had weekly Ph.D. support and guidance in my corner. Further, I have a med check with a psychiatrist monthly. About her, my MD is pretty adamant about the silk purse/sow's ear idea, too, wanting me to cut my losses on a hopeless situation and telling me just last week to quit reflecting on them.

Maybe you are a stellar step mom in your own estimation? During this time, I researched the topic thoroughly and found repeatedly that it is best not to step parent, to not try to mother, especially a teenager. I obviously failed as a "positive adult role model" in her eyes, but every other adult in her life failed, too. That includes parents, grandparents, uncles, cousins, friends' parents, teachers, and coaches.

She warmed to and related to nobody. Well, before she went to live with her mother (and before her pulling the switchblade on her and all this Spring, so I don't know where their relationship is now), she'd cuddle up with her mother (it was gooey and sickening to all in view of it), the one who abandoned her and the only one on a pedestal. L pandered to her because she was gone and inaccessible, not because either of them were emotionally available.

L warmed to nobody else, except her boyfriends, and it was the same gooey, sickening draping of bodies. She both craved and repelled contact. She tried it on me once or twice and I rested my arm on her in comfort, but I never counted piggies like a toddler with her - I am much too autonomous to be gushy lovey dovey to anyone like that except my own young son (who should be finished with it within 3 or so years), but I'm not apologizing. However, she did get to the point she would ask me to cut her hair, because she could trust me to just do a trim, contrary to what her grandmother would tell me to do. Believe it or not, there were things we were okay on.

Perhaps you don't blog? Perhaps you never vent? Well, this is my place for both. I vent heartily here so that I don't vent vehemently elsewhere IRL. This is my steam valve outlet and I thought I'd made that clear. Many bloggers are similar. My words here do not match my actions elsewhere, let me assure you. I am great at holding my tongue and, if I don't think I am a good place for tongue-holding, I generally stay home. Simple. (I desperately wanted to stay home at Xmas, even considered it with great anxiety, but I would have caught significant flack for that too b/c of the visitors from out of town with the big night planned; I never would have made the point of comparison that hiding out at home would have been better than melting down in public. It was a no win situation.)

And, you know what, it isn't a perfect world and I am not in control of it. However, I am a very responsible person, so I do look at L's "late blooming," complete lack of social skills as problematic in light of how responsible I was at her age. Yes, even a blow job-giving teenager at age 16 can be responsible while acting like a teenager and having fun. I did stupid stuff, but not bad enough to get caught. I tested the apron strings and did fine on my own; that's the purpose of being a teenager. Further, my young son is responsible and insightful; L is not, except she was like her father in seeking out situations to negatively impact their self esteem like at the swim club last summer. They looked for things to twist to the negative; that was their hobby. Don't give her that much credit for real insight; she was an inventor instead. And she invented walls all around herself.

L's just like her mother, who was also hospitalized for psychiatric issues around age 14-15, and her mother before her who had a baby at age 15. With L following after her mother, I see that there is not an end to this cycle. She's not going to up and grow out of it next year like your crystal ball says. And if you could see her cousins from her father's side and the drug abuse there, you'd realize that it is a continuation of genetics. You might remember in your reading, I am a believer that nature definitely has one up on nurture.

As you can see, these are the nature aspects of the girl and there's not a damn thing I could do about them. I put a lot into nurturing her and assisting him, but I could not be the nurturer for her in my role as girlfriend. And I wasn't the first girlfriend she rejected. Nope, not taking that responsibility.

Further, you cattily mention a stream of girlfriends. P(is for pussy) is not a girlfriend hound and not a bar prowler, although he had done it a couple times like any other single guy. He was alone for the better part of 10 years between his marriage and me. He takes his responsibility with L very seriously time wise - obviously one of my points of contention in our relationship and I don't think my requests of time were overwhelming. His daughter rarely met anybody he went out with - it had been convenient b/c his parents lived nearby until just before we dated and they took her when he wanted to do something.

One who he did go out with for a year (ending 6 months before me) had the 17yo depressive goth son that showed L the ropes of being a morose teenager; P(is for pussy) blamed his dating the mom and that boy for L's turn around when she was 11. Before then, she was a charming, delightful child. Looking at pictures of her, the change has been drastic.

I was kind to L. For much of the day-to-day exposure, we got along just fine, better than fine. My posts here didn't note, 1) buy/make chicken for L again this week, 2) hand delivered it to her room, 3) bus the dishes when she finished, 4) give her the chocolate I bought her as a treat. Oh, and I did suggest to P(is for pussy) about cleaning off the kitchen table for us to eat together, but he wouldn't; she usually wouldn't join us in the LR (much less the table) and she didn't do so when I wasn't there either - but she was always invited. In doing for her, I would take her to movies, or at least offer/try, and buy her DVDs, gift cards, make her dad take us to the fair and another festival.

Twice I even picked her up by car and saved her ass when she should have been home. I didn't skip out on telling her father she'd been AWOL, but I delayed him knowing and his explosion toward her was lessened. I wanted to temper things between them, because he had quite the temper when provoked. I remember once telling him in bed, after he'd had a niiice orgasm, so he wouldn't rail on her so hard. (Sorry, I know you think there is no place for humor here.) She knew I protected her, even if she didn't know my ways.

I tried to fit in her world as best I could. I got her a R.afael N.adal poster for her birthday last year, hot off the presses. We shared a love of tennis in different ways, but she appreciated something I enjoyed and introduced her to. Last year, during the family day outing at the tournament, she took our big tennis ball and got autographs from two of the top players coming off the court - both of them went straight to her goth-wearing self immediately, first autograph, and she was proud to have done the service. It was fun when we could see that side of her - she was a fan of males, not of tennis, but we overlapped a little.

I went to her swim meets. That means we drove anywhere from 30-60 minutes at 5am each Saturday to go sit in the sun for 8+ hours, plus practices 4 nights a week. Then, in the winter season, it meant every Friday and Saturday night for months each year, plus practices. Yeah, I was the one tracking her at the meets, too, and I don't mean in the water. She would blow off heats (not miss, but consciously decide not to because she was mad at the coach or something) and sometimes you'd have to find her to get her in line in time. It wasn't enjoying a sporting event and cheering her on, it was babysitting. And it was pretty close to step mothering.

BTW, the 'still hate dad's g/f' thing was after I'd seen L maybe 5-7 times, so there wasn't enough to base it on and she later said for herself that she hated all of dad's g/fs. One of those few times together, P(is for pussy) and I went out for about 2.5 hours and she + freak friend V had bombed my car with grapes and let off streams of firecrackers from the fucking balcony. It was NOT written after finding us having sex. It WAS after a lot of exposure to V, who had a father with a stream of girlfriends/mother who priortized boyfriends and both lending V the perspective that was most apparent to L and adopted by her. By that time, I had driven 90 minutes out of my way to take her to an acclaimed indie movie, doing the same to take us all to the arena, all in the attempts to cultivate a positive one-on-one relationship with her.

Do you remember when she was in the hospital and they asked what she likes to do? She replied, "Go to museums," and P(is for pussy) stated, "Cricket's the only one to take you to museums." I'd taken her to three the month before. She didn't want to give me the credit, but I tried hard to break down walls that she either already erected or built on specs. I didn't do things to erect walls. No. If anything, and this is my first time admitting this here, she loved me and tested me to see if I'd stick around. I knew that and I did stick around. I wanted to make a difference. I got manipulated and suffered, but I stuck around. She acted like she hated me, but she didn't. She just knew I had no power, because her father was rendered powerless, too.

However, how warped are you that you can't read and believe that she was nicer to me after she caught P(is for pussy) and I in bed on the ship? How traumatic would it really be if you're a teenager already fucking, if your parents have been single for 10 years, if you watched Springer daily with your grandmother, and if you already saw your father fucking about 5 years earlier? She was not sheltered. She got a quick glimpse of our profile, nothing specific except my right breast, and P(is for pussy) and I weren't even touching by the time she opened the door.

I try to keep my private life separate, but I do not want any kid to think of parents as asexual beings. P(is for pussy) commented on her turn around first, himself saying the closer bit. I think we were more human to her eyes. She'd smile afterwards, in that tiny cruise room, a chair placed haphazardly in a certain place to get it out of the way, joking that it was actually in the way on purpose, as if blocking a door. Perhaps that was because we didn't have a chair blocking the door and she was giving us a hint? We ALL laughed about it (except clueless J), perhaps the first laughs of the cruise, and it was HER initiating it.

Shoot, I forgot. I'm making all this up. She really had a change of heart because we let her bop the cabin steward on our bed while we waited outside. THAT's the real reason.

See what I did there? A little tongue in cheek?

In those early months, I was accepting of her, but of course I noticed she dressed like Beetlejuice. A huge turning point for all of us was the boy she started seeing that Sept, the month before the suicidal gesture. This is the boy who gave her drugs, 17 in 10th grade, was fucking her when P(is for pussy) walked in early from work, encouraged her cutting, hid in the apt two weekends, got her caught on a breaking and entering, gave her a switchblade... need I go on? I was waaaay against that, not accepting of it at all, but knowing that I couldn't do anything to drive them apart. Her attitude and grades dropped below radar. Not my fault, not my doing, not my responsibility. But that doesn't mean I didn't care and want better for her.

What I tried to do was support P(is for pussy), point things out, give suggestions, provide other diversions for her. He could take away her phone and computer, but she could still see the boy at school and the cutting would increase (her reverse punishment to him) unless he gave the electronics back.

Where am I in this exactly? How am I sabotaging her? I spent 3-5 nights there every two weeks. I had very little influence over her or greater than casual exposure to her. And, honestly, when one is as anxious about adversity as I am, why would I seek that out? I was powerless, except in being support to her father nearer the end. He needed me as an outlet. I was his friend.

One other thing - perhaps I didn't make a vestedness disclaimer, but I was vested in P(is for pussy) and accepting of the package, which included his lying, psychotic mother. Like any dating, one feels the other out over time. He made things move entirely too quickly by arranging the trip after we'd been going out only 6 weeks.

If you didn't notice, the underlying issue about travel, the thing I am most pissed about is having to pay for 1/3 of each trip - my wanting to go bit me in the ass, because he mislead me and I am angry about that. The first trip, I didn't know his financial situation. Who plans a cruise for 4 when creditors are calling? I didn't know I'd be up for $1200 - all travel/gas/spending money/tours/on board expenses; I had to charge part and defer my car payment for part. It was painful. For the second trip, he'd refinanced his house and said he had money left over for a trip. I thought he had money, but I still had to pay $800 once we got there.

Count that up - a single SAHM paying out $2000 over 3 months! I was in a world of hurts and general gift money from my mother had to buy tires the next month. I am ashamed that I was not more fiscally responsible regarding those trips, but I had no idea ahead of time. Then when he was unemployed, I still paid. It will take me some time to get back on track from him.

And if you didn't catch the umptyzilllion times I wrote that me crying on Xmas day was because of thyr*xine overdose, I will state it one more time. I'd been edgy for a few days, not understanding why, thinking I had the worst PMS in my history. I had bumped up the prescribed level per instructions just days before. The edginess progressed, but my outlet/vent was underaged drinking in public. I stand by that.

L wasn't even around when I blew; they were off securing drinks, so she didn't even know what happened, no clue during or after - only her uncle (Perfect Bro), aunt (Bro's wife well to his junior), P(is for pussy) and I were there, then I left. I have apologized repeatedly for my delivery and I regret that the real issue was overshadowed by me instead of the focus being on the genetic predisposition for the spreading of alcoholism and abuse.

So, no, L and I are not alike in the least. Even if I am bipolar, I own up to it, put myself out here for analysis and education. I am genius, still way below her intelligence, but I had sense enough as a kid to keep up my grades. That was probably b/c I knew nobody would bail me out if I fucked up, but L knows everybody jumps when she says to and her grandparents have plenty of money for school, even if she doesn't have the grades to get in.

I had only had sex once before I was raped my first weekend of college. I had one boyfriend all though HS. My husband lost his virginity on our wedding night. I haven't been pristine, but I am not the opposite, either. L and I have nothing in common about this, but then I didn't have Springer to watch every day after school. My goal is that my son finds a balance here, too.

To further explain me and mental illness, I've spoken ad nauseum about the numbers of meds I've tried that didn't work or that brought me terrible side effects. People with hypothyroidism often go through this. Further, people who are ADHD do, too. That part is under investigation concerning me, but reading some of Amen's works I realize I have a couple different kinds and it overlaps significantly with BPD. The way my brain works is even more complicated than other's; that may be part of the reason why divergent points to others make complete sense to me. You definitely do not understand that and my blog is full of it. My brain is fast, active, intense, always on and I am definitely not complaining about the way I work, but read the by-line. I am an oxymoron.

Unlike me, L's had the benefit of being tested for similar diagnoses through the school. All she has officially is an LD in math, but she had no ADHD. They gave her a BPD diagnosis in the mental hospital, but that is what they give everyone so that they can play with meds over time and make insurance companies satisfied. P(is for pussy) declined on meds and they had a terrible therapist afterwards, so nothing positive happened, but that wasn't without my trying.

In other parallels you draw, you are also mistaken. P(is for pussy) is too wounded from being his mother's child to truly integrate anything. He operates out of a sense of guilt with L, not out of a sense of her diagnosis. He is still shattered at the thought of his ex wife dumping them, having affairs, and leaving him to raise a daughter alone. Further, he had to depend on his psychotic mother to keep her before and after school, him justifiably fearing how she was programming his daughter. He feels inadequate all around and does have poor self esteem. I tried to bolster that and sacrificed myself for his self esteem if an issue wasn't as big to me. That's not mothering or being egotistical; that's caring and putting someone else ahead.

With my problem at Xmas, he also could not internalize anything beyond what his eyes told him. You might remember that he said he started pulling away six months before, but he preferred blaming me at Xmas for the rift. That is his lack of ability to corner a problem and cull a solution. I don't take the blame for that. You seem bent on blaming me for living in an imperfect world and me trying to make it a better place.

How can I be wrong thinking ex owes me after 17 years of marriage, most of which was as a Reservist in the military and provided no retirement - his choice because his self esteem is wrapped up so tightly in his job? Payment and amount were his suggestions, so obviously he agrees. Perhaps you're Old Mother Hubbard with dozens of children running around, but I'm not. That is something he denied me, too, and I don't care (nor does he) how I rationalize him owing me a paycheck. No.

Overall, I realize I have plenty of marks against me, I'll admit it readily and do so often here, but it makes me know myself better and I've learned to appreciate other things. I am not a head-in-the-sand type and I think that is one of the most obvious things about me, particularly as I write.

My son's old baseball coach says to batters: "See the ball. Hit the ball."

I do both. I identify. I act. When it comes to myself and my behaviors, I give everybody else in the world a hell of a lot of slack for their issues, much more that I do for myself.

I do not care if you identify and act differently. This is my life to see and hit as I please as long as I do not seek to hurt others in the process, a guiding principle as well.

One other clarification...

No teenagers were harmed in the making of this blog.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Simple math word problem





and an insect trying hard to stay busy.

Monday, July 03, 2006


I enjoy What's in Rebecca's Pocket? for her little tidbits of data and opinion. She's easy and interesting reading with a world of other outlets where she puts more substance.

Her post a few days ago was a usual sort: Words that are their own antonym with a link to fun-with-words. "Auto-antonym has Greek roots meaning a word that is the opposite of itself."

Here are a couple of the examples given:

• restrained (e.g. by rope)
• to spring; leap

• to fasten together; hold tightly
• to cut apart; cut off (e.g. with shears)

• usual; normal
• special; unique

• fixed firmly in place
• moving quickly; speedy

It's a fun list; stuff you knew and perhaps you didn't realize.

But, there's always a but, then came...

• impossible to enter (e.g. of a fortress)
• able to be impregnated


Not only am I am libidinous, infertile oxymoron of a mother, I am an auto-antonym. Impregnable is the single most accurate word to describe secondary infertility. Years ago, I was once able to be impregnated, then my eggs became impossible to enter. I am a fortress now, shut up tight, a bastion of aging infertility.





[Middle English imprenable, from Old French : in-, not (from Latin in-. See in-1) + prenable, pregnauble, pregnable; see pregnable.]

[impregn(ate) + -able.]

I should add it to my byline:
I'm an oxymoron: an impregnable, libidinous, infertile mom

It makes me sound more smart and less horny. So maybe I won't. One shouldn't lie in one's byline. And I fear the term, auto-erotic-antonymism, might be a bit misleading. My asthmatic lungs like air too much.


Continuing through the alphabetical auto-antonym list, more apply. I realized this word describes aptly how I (used to?) vacillate about achieving pregnancy ad nauseum:

• to quit; give up
• to sign up again

Guess! Which one is it today? Blame, that's an easy question.

It goes without saying which one of the following I usually am anymore, excepting Friday's sledding (into trees) generosity:

• murderous
• cheerfully optimistic

Actually, come to think of it, the sled gesture is at the height of pleasant tree-wrapping, storage-lacking auto-antonymism. I guess I am -nymy good these days.

I'll simply finish with this one:

wind up
• to start; prepare
• to end; conclude

Or I'll begin again and ask which of the list tickles your funny bone the most?