Some days things feel easier than others. The last little while things have felt hard.
On Friday, we had another blowout–M and I. All because I didn’t want to go outside. I offered alternatives that we could do together, but nothing made a difference. He absolutely exploded. And I just can’t do it anymore. I talked to his father and we’ve agreed that maybe M should go live with him for awhile. I don’t necessarily think it’s the best thing for M, but I feel lost with it all. I love him but I absolutely hate the way he is. M is not just an angry child. He’s mean, sarcastic and vindictive, teetering on the edge of cruel. When things are good, he’s fun to be around, but lately there haven’t been many good days at all.
I don’t think it’s right to feel like you need to walk on eggshells for fear of upsetting your child. I don’t think it’s right to be hit and sworn at and have things that you’ve worked hard for broken. I don’t think it’s right to isolate yourself from events with family and friends because you’re afraid of how your child is going to act. I don’t think it’s right that a younger sibling cowers whenever their older brother walks by because they might just get thrown to the floor or punched for no apparent reason.
I don’t believe in physical punishment. I told myself I would never hit my children or swear at them or make them feel unloved or unwanted. I’ve tried everything with him–losing privileges, taking away electronics and refusing to buy him anything besides the food and clothes that he needs. Nothing works.
Friday was the tipping point. I was hit with a hockey stick, a broom handle and punched. Holes were put in the wall, black marks were kicked onto my closet doors, drawers were emptied, the tv was knocked over and he stomped so hard on my bare foot with his winter boot that I now have a large bruise. I was sworn at and called names, there were threats that he would run away and never come back again. He called his father and as I tried to open his bedroom door, he screamed into the phone that I was trying to break into his room and get him ‘help me Daddy, she’s going to hurt me‘. He lies, he manipulates and he’s destructive.
His father wanted to talk to me and I told him what had happened. He offered to take him for a little while. While it goes against so much of what I want for our son, I agreed. For the first time, it actually felt like my ex and I were coming towards the middle. I don’t think his wife is happy with the decision, but she needs to realize that he is M’s father and he has a responsibility to help raise him to be a respectable member of society. I can’t do it alone. So, this week M’s dad is moving to a new house and then if all goes well, M will be moving in with him in the next couple of weeks.
Part of me feels so much relief, but part of me feels devastated at the same time. Am I giving up on him? Am I doing the right thing? Will this cause a bigger divide between us? Sometimes I think you need to let things go. But is this one of those things? He’s a child, not a possession. It’s my job to make sure he’s okay. Am I failing him? Am I failing at being a mother?
The biggest question I am faced with is whether I am doing to M what my mother did to me–sending him somewhere else because he is too much for me. Maybe it’s different because M actually wants to go and M’s dad wants him there (at least for now). I’m not sure, but I don’t feel like the world’s greatest mother at the moment.
The one thing I’ve come to realize in all of this is that my younger son also needs me. M takes so much time and energy that I feel like C doesn’t get what he needs sometimes. Their personalities couldn’t be further apart, and while most things slide off his back, I still worry about C. He shouldn’t have to grow up afraid all the time. M fighting with me isn’t going to create any positive memories for C and he deserves to grow up in a more calm environment.
On top of everything with M, it’s been terribly cold and snowy. For the record, I’d just like to put it out there that it’s actually never too cold to snow. Yesterday morning when I came to work it was -30 C (-22 F for my non-metric friends). Yikes, that’s cold!!! My joints have been quite sore lately and I feel cold and exhausted most days. I’m not sure if it’s the consecutive days of snow removal (we’ve gotten about 159 inches so far which is almost 14 feet-also what I like to refer to as a shit-ton), the stress of everything to do with M or if my lupus is acting up on me. The only benefit of the cold weather (if there is one) are the starry nights. There’s just something beautiful about a cold, clear winter sky. I was lucky enough to see the wolf moon just over a week ago. Below is a pic I took (it’s not the best, but it was amazing to see).
So, I am letting M go. But only physically. He will always be my son and even though I don’t like the way he is, I will always love him. He will always have a place within me that belongs only to him.