Thursday, April 26, 2007

Selfishness....A only at your own risk....

Today was cool and gray. It matches my mood, or maybe it set my mood. I am very frustrated and feeling quite a bit hopeless. That means that most of this entry is going to be a feel sorry for me type of post. In some ways I am very angry. Writing is just an outlet for it and I hope it works.

For the past six years I have been the sole care provider for my son. He is now nine years old. People are really good at admiring my dedication, telling me how lucky he is to have such a caring father, etc. My son is a somewhat special needs child. There is a conference happening at school right now for the special education committee where they are discussing my son specifically. He is a Catch 33 child. Huh? He can't really stay in a normal class due to emotional/behavioral issues. He is far too smart to be put in a special program for emotional/behavioral issues, his grades are too good. He may qualify intellectually for the gifted program, but his emotional/behavioral issues prevent him from going there too. He doesn't belong. I am going insane. I cannot find a diagnosis, neither can any professional I take him too. Experimentation and observation have been the rules of this game for a long time. Even a week of observation in a psychiatric ward only produced a change in medication, but no diagnosis, or change of diagnosis. Half of the problem I have right now is that I have no help. I get advice, but no help. What does this mean? Well, getting links to websites, getting advice of other people to go to, more information about this malady or that emotional problem does not actually give me another set of hands for me to be able to act on it. It does not give me another set of eyes day to day. It does not give me another thinking body that actually wants to be able to work with Brandon, is willing to be a little less selfish and actually DO something. So I have to take time off from work to get Brandon here, or there. I do not have anyone that can pick him up and get him into a family setting so that I can also get back to work to make up hours. My vacation is nill and stays there. Time to myself? No one wants Brandon. No one. Brandon comes home and is crying, tears streaming, about how he just wants to come home, not have to go to daycare. He is too young, I cannot let him. It is just me there to comfort him. People give me numbers of other daycare providers, etc, but no homes, no help, no time, no offers to feed or comfort a lonely child whose situation is not his making, and lots of condolences but no real compassion or empathy for either of us. Should I just send him to his mother, a two parent home, who has not paid me any child support in six years? Granted, she cleans stalls at a barn and has no money and I feel it is better for Brandon that she at least try to take him for the summers rather than try to extract money from her. He needs his mom. He deserves better. I am so tired, so drained, an empty shell. I try so hard to be energetic and optimistic for him everyday. Somehow, I tend to attract and date selfish women. I'm not saying all women are, not by a long shot. I was told of a woman that married an entertainer knowing he had ALS. They had four daughters to care for between them and yet she married him anyway. That is Love. I drive back and forth to Maryland every weekend for over a year, spend weekends mowing grass, painting a house, doing other handyman stuff, buying dinners, feeding six children, photographing them, videoing them, getting them breakfast and ready for school while their mom does hot yoga, ferry children back and forth to various practices, spending weekends with five children at swim meets, WORKING at the damn swim meets, creating DVDs for three families so that everyone could see the pictures and videos of her amazing children, and so much more. That was love bordering on stupidity. Ok, it was stupid. What did I get in return? Selfishness. Shame on me. I didn't have to do all that she reminds me. She tells me that to have a relationship, I need to provide a solution for Brandon. She sends me links on the Internet, tells me to see this person or that person, but there are no hands to help, there is no time invested actually doing something to help me get there. Just direction and criticism and lies and betrayal. Jealousy when I do try to do something for me, passive-aggressive reactions, or outright refusal to help. Shame on me for not seeing it sooner right? Another person I dated said I need to have a live in nanny, then her and I might be able to have a relationship. At least she was honest. Another person said that I needed to send Brandon to boarding school so that I could be available when she needed me. Does this sound like a nightmare? It is. I hate it. But hey, the nightmare gets worse. One set of grandparents no longer can help me at all because of health problems. The other set doesn't want to in order to spite me. Brandon's mom says she cannot take him at all this summer since her husband will be away. So, how do you look for a date, a mate, when you have a special needs child around all the time and I am the only one who wants him? All I want is to have a family to come home to every night, to participate in the sports and activities of our children, help them with their homework and their other problems, cook dinner, spend weekends creating memories, and to just truly love and appreciate the very special person who wants to be with me, who will stick together regardless of the maladies and roadblocks in the way and work with me to invest in a future, our dreams. I'm sure there are many people out there but how do you find them? Where are they? How do you distinguish them from some of the other people that I loved but lied to me? How do I do this when I can barely get out for a date? How do I do this when money seems to just be pouring into doctors that can't help?

So you see, you were warned, a selfish rant, full of self-pity.

The good thing is that I feel a little better. Writing always does that. Now, time to go work out for a bit.



  1. Hey, it's your blog, and we all need a pity party now and then. :)
    I feel you. I do. My son has CP--he can't walk, talk, sit up...he has to be fed and diapered. It's been like having an infant for 12 years. It's hard, and sometimes I just cry about it. I don't go out-people are "scared" that something will happen with my son (he also has a mild seizure disorder).
    His twin sister is a godsend, she helps me immensely with her brother.
    But yeah, it's hard, and I pity myself sometimes too.
    It's frustrating when we don't know HOW to take care of them sometimes...when they can't TELL us what's wrong, what's going on in their heads.
    It's a tough job, and I'm so proud of you (I know, I don't know you, but still) for stepping up and doing what you have to do.
    And if you complain now and then about it, so what? :)
    *hug* Keep on keepin' on. That's all any of us can do.

    P.S. I'm glad I could give you a little laugh today--sounds like you needed it.

  2. aka_monty,
    I certainly did need the laugh. Thank you for your kind comments and words of support. It is just a day, and I'm sure tomorrow will be better. I've had some great days lately after a bunch of not so great days. Trying to get out more, but it is hard. Trying to get out through reading some other blogs of parents, single parents, etc. I'm glad I found your blog! I certainly enjoy it!

  3. Oh honey, SO BEEN THERE DONE THAT! He sounds so much like my son. I suspected Asperger's with Josh but never got the "diagnosis" from the mental health people. Hang in there.
    If you don't find someone to share the ride with, you will survive. It's lonely and hard. Monty knows. I've seen her with her kids and she's wonderful. But getting a break is also important. Not always possible, mind you, but important.

    I used to lock myself in the bathroom and soak in the tub after he went to bed. It was often the only "alone" time I had. If you were closer I'd offer to help, but it's a far drive from TX to VA.

    You will get through it. And then life will kick you in the teeth some other way. And then you'll get through that. And your child will learn patience and perseverance through your example.

  4. Jules,
    I'm finding that just reading the experiences of others out there is helping. There are quite a few funny and inspiring people around dealing with various life issues that have chosen to share. It is giving me some lacking courage.

    I've soaked in the tub myself a number of times, problem is that I do not fit real well so I either have to fold up into some yoga position or soak a portion at a time. :-)

    I am resolving to not wait for the next kick though. Going to get out and pretend it is not coming, enjoy things as they come, and deal with the kick the moment it happens. Trying not to be afraid of that kick.

    Thank you for stopping by! I'll be looking forward to reading more in your blog too!


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