Monday, April 11, 2005

More realizations and hurt feelings

There are times as a mother that you are forced to see some truths about people, and seeing those truths makes you do things and back down from things that you normally would not. My upstairs neighbor and I are close, like sisters, complete with the disagreements that goes along with that. I don't always agree with her and vice versa. However, our children are close, and we tend to discipline each others kids when necessary. Remember that phrase, "when necessary", because I would never discipline in a situation where the parents should, nor would she. Her husband, however, is a different matter. He was raised quite differently from the two of us. He sees any discipline of his child as an attack on him personally as a father. To be honest, I don't like him. No, that isn't quite true. I see in him the glimmers of a man whom I could respect, he has something that could be brought out if he was of a mind to do so. He has problems that keep him from growing and becoming that man though. A lot of them stem from the bottle. He IS getting help, as of now, and both of us keep our fingers crossed that this time he will actually do what he's supposed to do. That said, back to the top of the post. At a party for Little Man, there were a few incidents that I did that he perceived in a way that it was not. One was an incident with soda. His son had a few sips of my grape soda (he is two) and while two year olds don't need ANY soda, at a party for him a non caffeinated one won't hurt him. The husbands mother gave him a sip of hers, which was a Pepsi. Now that is loaded with caffeine, given to a child who has never HAD caffeine ( he has had non caffeinated soda and not from me). I gently said to her that I didn't think it was a good idea to give him caffeine, which she replied oh your right and that was the end of it. The husband saw it as an attack on his mother. He held it in, when she let it go. After that, Little Man threw a rock at me, not maliciously as he isn't a malicious child, but at two he needs to realize that throwing rocks at people is not acceptable behavior. I held his hand, and said (quietly as this wasn't a big deal and didn't need to be made into one) No throw rocks hon. The husband loudly yelled my name quite a few times and told me that I was not to do that again, if Little Man had to be disciplined I was to call one of them over. Now this is NOT the way it is done when my upstairs neighbor and I are together with the kids. I feel that if that was Princess who threw a rock at someone, I would expect the person she threw a rock at to gently tell her that we don't do things like this. If you wait, and tell someone else about it, the meaning of why they are being talked to is lost. Well this turned into a whole "thing", and now I feel hurt the he thinks I was pulling hard on his sons arm and forcing his child to look at me so I could yell at him, which was not the case at all. His reaction turned something so small into a whole big thing. I'm hurt that he thinks I could do something so mean to a child I love almost as much as my own. My upstairs neighbor also saw these things, and saw them for what they were. He saw me as a monster, someone who could hurt his child and force my will upon his son. I think this is wrong. However, I have no choice but to back down, and follow his wishes when he is around, because the long and the short of it is, Little Man is not my child. As much as I may not agree with the husband, He IS the father, so I must back down. I don't do this well. I am a strong woman, who has made it on her own for the most part. I have HAD to trust my friends to step in at times with my daughter when I haven't seen or not been there because of work to do them, I see nothing wrong with this, Princess knows who her mother is, she also has respect for the adults around her because as her mother I haven't undermined their authority. I trust them not to do things to Princess I would not. I expect others to feel the same about me, and the majority of them do, which makes it hard to accept that the husband does not. I sometimes fail to realize that not everyone feels the same way as I do. So I was wrong, not for the way I disciplined his son, but for doing it in the first place with him there. So I step back, not easily as that is not my way, and I will hold my tongue, not for his sake but for my friend who is his wife, and for Little Man whom I love. From now on, if Little Man does things I see as wrong (and really who can say that throwing a rock at someone is right) I will get the father, and tell him. This won't work well, as his reaction will be hey he's only two you know. He isn't strong with discipline at all. Two is definitely old enough to know right from wrong. But again, he is not my child. This will become my litany, until it sinks into my thick skull. All for the sake of two people I love like family. I'm still hurt, and still mad, but.... He is not my son. Now I learn to step back. Wow has this been a week of lessons, first to let go of my daughter to grow, and second to step back and not do that which is so natural for me to do. Here's to growth, however painful it may be.

• Posted By Crazy Single Mom @ 10:05 PM
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