Life still happens in kink relationships.
I’ve spent a good bit of today just flat out flabbergasted. A lot has been going on within our respective extended families that I can’t even begin to make sense of.
I don’t usually talk about this stuff here because…I mean, it’s a kink blog. But I need to put it down so I can put it away, and I don’t have the first clue of where my latest journal is (it’s been that long since I’ve written in it…still not sure what to make of that), so here is where it goes. There may be some bitching, and some whining, and it’s got absolutely nothing to do with kink. And it might not make us seem like very nice people. But there’s a reason for everything we’ve done, and no matter how hard I try, I can’t put ten years of bullshit into words. Ask questions if you’d like. I’ll answer the ones I can.
You’ve been warned. Feel free to not read this.
Where to begin…
M’s got seven kids. Six, if you want to get technical, because his ex-fiance (who, for a time, was my best friend) cheated on him and then lied to him for a year about who was the baby’s father. But that’s neither here, nor there. Since S4 was born, M’s been his acting father as much as the ex will let him. Read: when she wants more money from him.
I’ll probably rant about that another time. Today, my beef’s with his oldest three kids.
We have been through hell with these kids.
In their defense, a lot of bad shit has happened to them due to some bad choices their mother made. But a lot of bad shit has happened to all of us. Meaning all of us in this ginormous bizarro family, but also most everyone in the world. Most of us pull ourselves up by the bootstraps (with or without professional help) and get on with our lives. These kids, instead, are convinced the world owes them something, and mostly sit on their asses waiting for something to fall in their lap.
We were actually kinda proud of the oldest daughter, for a minute. Most of her life, she’s done what she could to get out of obligations and/or trouble by blaming what she’s gone through. Then, at the end of high school, she surprised us all and enlisted in the military. Until she found out they were planning on shipping her unit to Iraq. Suddenly, her PTSD was too much to handle, and she asked for a medical discharge.
Not long after, she got married to one of the guys from her old unit. She got pregnant and things were hunky-dory, till they got into some stupid argument, and she accused him of beating her up. When asked for the date, she gave one that fell before he returned home from Iraq. We later found out that he was, in fact, hitting her, but as a last resort when she wouldn’t stop hitting him. Not that that makes it right, but it does mean she bears some of the guilt, and he’s less of a monster than she made him out to be.
She’s pregnant with our second grandchild. They’ve decided to grow the fuck up and be a family, and supposedly, they’re not hitting each other anymore. They live too far away for us to be sure, unfortunately.
The youngest boy of the oldest three (we’ll call him Jr. because, of the four boys, he looks the most like his father) is completely uncontrollable by family. He always has been.
It began as self-destructive behavior when he was 11, and when that didn’t get the attention he wanted, he started to turn his anger outward. His mother asked for help with him repeatedly, and was denied because he had yet to do anything that warranted the state stepping in. She sent him to live with family, hoping a change of environment would help, and they always sent him back, exasperated, complaining that he was too much to handle.
Jr. was arrested for the first time at 16 for busting out a store window with some older boys and stealing over $1500 of merchandise. When he was asked why he did it, he told Mom and the police “It was the pot.”
Finally, the state stepped in and put him in a facility for juvenile offenders who need more than just punishment and rehabilitation. The problem with that is Jr. knows how he’s expected to behave by society’s standards, and does exactly what he’s supposed to when he’s involved with authority that is not family. So within a few months, he was deemed “safe and healthy” and released to his mother, which lasted the month he was out before he turned 18 and she had no right to keep him there.
Jr. moved out and started crashing on couches of friends, family members, people he just met. Within six weeks, he’d exhausted every option he had from New York to Florida by stealing from people opening their homes to him, getting into fist fights with old family friends, refusing to help support himself.
He can’t come here. It just wouldn’t work. The first time he raised his hand to me, if I didn’t kick his ass, his father would. So when he filed for welfare, and they called us and asked us to take him in, we told them no.
The chick actually tried to guilt trip M. All, “Your son is 18 years old, he’s troubled, and he’s got nowhere to go.”
But even the youth facility he was in eventually determined that Jr.’s problems aren’t mental. They’re behavioral.
Plain and simple, he wants to be taken care of for the rest of his life. He flat out told his brother and his social worker that he wasn’t going to get a job because his parents should be supporting him. And thanks to New York’s ridiculous child support laws, we should be. The only reason we’re not is he’s no longer on welfare. But we had to pay the state back for the services he received, and if he’s approved again, we’ll have to pay child support to M’s adult son who is perfectly capable of getting a job, and refuses to even try.
But that doesn’t stop him from calling his father once a month, or so, and asking for money. He’s even convinced he’s got a good reason. He knocked some 35yo woman up, and she told him that if he doesn’t get a job and help support the baby, she’s giving it up.
Months after she gave him this ultimatum, they got into a fight, and she kicked him out. He tried to commit suicide with Tylenol, and blamed everyone else for his situation. If we’d all just give him money, he’d be able to support his kid, no problem.
The oldest son (S1) is Mom’s favorite, so he’s never really been held accountable for anything unless she couldn’t deal with the stress anymore. Then she called M and told him to “handle his sons,” which was made doubly effective by the fact that she went out of her way to keep M away any other time. But somewhere in all the excuses she made for him, and her refusal to stand up to him, he still managed to come up with a little bit of personal responsibility and a whole lot of at least comprehension of respect and common sense. Which makes the situation with him all the more frustrating.
A couple days before graduation, S1 showed up on our doorstep. He’d moved out of his mother’s house a year before, but never made an attempt to get back in touch with his father because M’s mother told S1 that we’d just slam the door in his face. Since we’ve yet to do that to ANY of M’s family, I’m not sure where she got that idea, and since this is about the kids, I’ll refrain from getting into how incredibly fucked up that is but…I mean, it’s really fucked up.
We spent the rest of the day with him, fed him dinner, loaned him money, made plans to hang out again. He told M how much he wanted to build a relationship with him, and they talked about the things required from both of them for that to happen.
To his credit, before I talk about his asshattery, S1 does have a few personal achievements under his belt, including a couple neither of his parents earned. That’s something parents hope for, right? That at least one of their kids accomplishes more in life than they did?
For starters, he graduated high school. M has his GED, and his ex-wife might, but both of them dropped out.
He’s 21 and doesn’t yet have any children. M was 15, and his ex 19, when she got pregnant.
Problem is, we didn’t hear from him again, after that day, until he wanted more money. Now, he only calls or stops by if he wants money or a ride somewhere. He’s even dropped the “Hey, how ya doin’?”
And while that makes the urge rise up to fold myself around M and protect him from the douchebaggery, I wish more than anything that it was the extent of my aggravation. Because all I can see, right now, is this recent installment of the S1 drama somehow becoming our problem. And I really don’t want it to be our problem.
S1 also doesn’t have a job. I don’t know if he’s actually looking. He did apply with a temp agency, and occasionally gets a couple gigs running stock for concession at one of the local stadiums, but it’s unclear whether he’s trying to find something more permanent, or at least more lucrative. And he’s currently crashing on a buddy’s couch in a flat full of single college-age guys.
A couple weeks ago, he showed up with this girl we don’t know, all, “I’m getting married. This is my fiance.”
The day he showed up on our doorstep, he pulled out his yearbook and pointed out all the girls he was sleeping with. He said he didn’t have a girlfriend and they all knew about each other. Now he’s engaged. Well, okay then.
He seemed disappointed when we didn’t act excited. She seemed furious that we didn’t gush over her. They left shortly after.
Coincidentally, I got in the shower just before S1 showed up unannounced today, and I made sure I was still there well after he left. As it stands right now, I’m not allowed to tell S1 he’s a complete douche for schmoozing his father with some spiel about wanting to build a relationship, and then treating us like his personal, bottomless piggy bank, complete with lack of emotion, so when I realized S1 was here, I stayed in the shower.
M says it’s probably good I did. And then he told me what news S1 brought this time.
S1 and his girlfriend are trying to get pregnant.
Are you as “WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK?!” as I am right now?
I don’t even know where these kids get this shit from. Maybe it’s got something to do with how closed off M and his ex-wife are, and how oblivious she is. Because it’s certainly got nothing to do with their parents’ work ethic. They both work and take their jobs seriously. M’s worked for the same company as long as I’ve known him, and often works more than anyone I’ve ever known. His ex-wife’s had the same job for quite some time, and has had some job almost the entire time I’ve known her.
And since together and separate, they’ve always struggled for everything they had, they couldn’t afford to hand the kids whatever they wanted, so it’s not that, either.
No one has ever hidden from these (now grownup) children how hard being a parent is. Heaven knows, their parents and step-parents have made mistakes, and we’re all completely forthcoming with that fact. And they want to throw a couple more wrenches in it with an almost nonexistent courting period and unemployment? Are they fucking stupid?
That was rhetorical.
Of course they are.
S1 expected M to be happy for him. Again. And was disappointed. Again. And that’s just the icing on the gobsmacked cake. What crucial piece of child-rearing did we forget that a 21yo who is unemployed and crashing on a spunk-covered couch in a bachelor flat thinks his parents would feel anything but dread when he announces he’s trying to have a baby with the girl of his dreams…or at least the dreams he can remember from the last three months?
The more this shit happens, the more I feel like he’s trying to get a reaction—ANY reaction—from his father. Because he is an adult, and we haven’t been allowed to be parental figures in his life, we’ve been reluctant to act that way. But honestly? Now, I kinda think S1 needs someone to ask the question I would have been unable to clamp my mouth shut on. (Are you fucking stupid?!)
When M tried to explain how hard it is to take care of a kid at the best of times, S1 replied with his version of my typical response to M’s worries, which is “We’ll figure it out.” And while I’d usually be glad to know someone else subscribes to the “You can do whatever you put your mind to.” mindset, in this case I’d like to amend my philosophy with “within reason,” please and thanks.
Actually, there is a lesson in all this. Entering into a kink relationship doesn’t whisk you away to some magic place where all the normal things people have to deal with just cease to exist. Life still happens. Jesus FUCK, does life still happen.