Stories That Need to Be told Part 5: He is not good enough for you if…

The other day, I was having a conversation with a mother of a teenager.  Her story really hit home.  She was talking about her 17 year old daughter who broke up with her boyfriend the night before.  She was so proud of her for doing it because she was miserable for a long time.  Her boyfriend did a lot of questionable, controlling things.  He is trying to make her feel guilt about breaking up with him.

The title to this post could just as easily be, she is not good enough for you if…  But because The Mother Hen is dating and The Show is not too far from the dating age, it is what it is.  Also, because I was in a bad relationship, I feel the need to list a few warning signs. So, without further ado:

He is not good enough for you if…

  • He makes you feel guilty when you don’t want to spend time with him. – Maybe, you had a bad day and don’t want to be around people.  Maybe, you just want some time to relax.  But, you had no plans with him and he is making you feel guilty because you don’t want to spend time together.
  • You have to argue with him any time that you want to spend some time with your friends.  – He is jealous of your gal friends and guy friends.  He tells you that he doesn’t want you to spend time with them.  (This is not the same as him having a problem with a specific friend. But, use caution if he has a problem with your best friend.)
  • He orders for you at a restaurant (and it is the cheapest thing on the menu.) – This is not to say that if he knows what you want because you told him and had to run to the ladies room. This is when he talks over you when the wait-staff asks you what you would like. 
  • He treats customer service people like servants. – If he treats strangers poorly, how do you think he will treat you?  Chances are, after a while, he will get comfortable with you and start trying to order you around too.
  • He grips hard or is rough when “play” fighting.–   We all do it.  We play fight and grip too tight on accident.  But, I am talking about consistently do it and not apologizing for it.  It is more important for him to show he is stronger and better than you then the flirting that is play fighting.
  • He tells you that he doesn’t trust you, with words or actions. – Even if you did something that is not trust worthy, this is dangerous behaviour.  It is especially dangerous if you haven’t done anything to lose his trust. This is a very controlling behaviour because he can guilt you into doing things based on the idea that you are trying to earn his trust.
  • He makes you feel worse about yourself. – A boyfriend should almost always make you feel better about yourself.  He should compliment you and work well with you.  You should not feel like less but like a partner or equal. 

I wish that when I was 17 I would have had someone who I would have listened to present me with this list.  I just hope that you take it to heart and know that this list comes from experience and not because I don’t like whomever you are dating personally.  I wish I would have listened to my friends and my parents.  I wish I would have listened to those little warning signs going off in my own head.

Stories that need to be told: Part 4

Okay girls, I am going to tell you a story about me this time. Hopefully, this will make you understand why I hate, “In a minute”.

This morning, I saw a commercial that made me think of my ex husband. It was a Scrubbing Bubbles Shower Cleaner commercial. The scrubbing bubbles made me think of the infamous shower curtain argument. Here is how it went… I asked him from the time we got up that morning until the blow out to help me clean the house. I kept hearing “in a minute”. After about an hour of me working and him sitting, he asked what I wanted him to do. I gave him a list of like 6 things, including clean the shower and replace the curtain. 3 and 1/2 hours later, he still hadn’t started on anything that I had asked him to do. So, I started doing it. Figuring that at least if it was done I would feel better and be able to go grocery shopping. I did everything on the list and I was half way through changing the shower curtain when he came storming into the bathroom. He demanded the curtain hooks and said “If I do this, you can’t [complain]* and say I didn’t help. And maybe you will stop nagging me.” I refused. He left. He went to my best friend and complained about me. He told my best friend that I hounded him all day long. My best friend didn’t buy it. But, I will never forget how he told the story.

So, my girls, I want you to remember this.  And remember most of all, not to get into a relationship with someone who will not work with you.  Working together is more important than a lot of other things.  And if you can’t work together, one of you will end up feeling taken advantage of, or worse.

* Edited for swearing content.

Stories That Need to be Told: Part 3

This is one of my favorite stories about Bear.  It really shows the way that he looks at those he cares about.  When The Mother Hen was born, Bear was a young man.  He really was still a kid in a few ways, but that changed when she was born.  He was the first to hold her at the hospital.  If you ask him, he can still tell you what book he was reading while waiting for her to arrive and what he had for lunch that day.

Bear had heard about Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and was scared.  When they got home from the hospital, he refused to put her down.  He was too afraid that if he put her down, she would get hurt.  For three days, he stayed awake holding her close and watching her to make sure she was okay.   By the third evening, his best friend was starting to worry about him because he knew that Bear had not slept.  So, he came over to their home.  He said “Man, you have got to get some sleep.  You can just put her in a crib on her back and she will be fine.”  Bear refused.  Finally, his friend said, “I will hold her while you sleep for a few hours.”  It took some convincing but he finally slept.  Everyday for the next week, his friend would come over to hold onto The Mother Hen for a few hours so that Bear could nap.  Finally, Bear put her in her crib and watched over her for several nights before he felt safe enough to sleep himself.

Stories That Need to Be Told: Part 2

Bear and I have been worrying about The Show lately.  She is in the ‘tween age years and facing a number of ‘tween aged challenges.  She has always been a very independent and free thinking girl but as she is getting older she is starting to let others make decisions for her.  So, I have two stories about her that will hopefully help her remember not only who she is but how much she is loved.

*****

When The Show was born, Bear worked the swing shift for the Airforce in North Carolina.  Because they had The Mother Hen at the time and Bear couldn’t take care of the new born Show, his mother flew in from Michigan to help out.  This story was told to me by her recently.  She would keep The Show’s crib in her room with her so that she could get up with her when she cried.  But, every day at nap time, Bear would wake up to come and get her so that she could sleep on his chest.  He would sleep on the couch and The Show would tuck her little feet into his waist band and curl her little fists into his chest hair.  The two of them would sleep this way until it was time for Bear to get up and go to work.  His mother told me that the first few times he had to go to work were the hardest.  The Show would cry and so would Bear when it came time for him to leave.  She would have to spend about 20 minutes cooing to The Show, “Don’t worry pretty girl, Daddy’s coming home soon.”

*****

A few summer’s ago, The Show was afraid of heights.  She still is to a point but she is much better now.  We were all at a lighthouse near Lake Superior.  The first think I did, was run to the top of the lighthouse.  I didn’t realize that I was the only one.  I looked down from the top and The Show and Bear were in a deep conversation.  So, I came back down.  It turns out The Show wanted to see the top, but she was too scared.  So, I told her to come with me.  It was slow going and the close we go to the top, the more she began to shake.  We were almost to the top when she announced that she thought she was going to throw up.  I told her that she could go back down if she wanted to.  She looked at me and said, ” No, I need to do this.” She continued to climb.  When we reached the top, I made her stop and take a photo.  Its a little blurry because her hands were shaking but, this is the view she had.shows-view

 

 

 

The Show,

May you always have as much courage as you had on this day.  And may you always remember how much people love you.

Love,

WickedStepMom

A reminder

Note to self, remember these words.  As said by Druss the Legend, a character created by David Gemmell.

Never violate a woman, nor harm a child.
Do not lie, cheat or steal.
These things are for lesser men.
Protect the weak against the evil strong.
And never allow thoughts of gain to lead you into the pursuit of evil.
Never back away from an enemy. Either fight or surrender.
It is not enough to say “I will not be evil.” Evil must be fought wherever it is found.

Stories that need to be told: Part 1

I have been thinking a lot lately about how to tell the girls some really important stories.  Stories about their father and about other important people in their lives.  I guess it really started when Bear and the Tyrant had an all out pistols-at-dawn argument.  They were both hurting so bad and part of me wanted to wrap them both up and say that everything would be okay.  But, the other part of me knew, it was a battle that needed to be fought.  So, The Mother Hen, The Show and I watched the heart ache unfold and did our best to not let them see that we were hurting too.  It was this argument that made me think of a story that Bear told me. 

Right after The Tyrant was born, she developed jaundice.  Her skin was yellow and she looked sickly.  The doctors told Bear that she needed as much sun light as possible to help break down the illness.  The Tyrant was born at the tail end of March, in Michigan.  There was very little sunlight to be found.  So, he wrapped her up in a ton of blankets and put her in her car seat.  He carried her out of his truck that had tinted windows, but was parked in the sunniest part of the yard.  He opened the windows and blasted the heat, tried to expose as much of her skin to the sun as possible. As the day would progress, he would move the truck so that she would get the most sunlight possible.  Her skin started to look more baby pink and less yellow.   He did this every day from sun up to sun down for two weeks.  The jaundice left her and she was a healthy baby from that point forward.

It occurred to me, as she was slamming a door in his face, that she had never heard this story.  And, I know Bear would never tell her this story, because he doesn’t like to make himself sound like he is Mr. Wonderful.  I realized it would be up to me to tell her.  I decided to write this story and others that need to be told here.  Maybe they will be able to look back at this one day and read these stories.  Hopefully, I would have already told them before they read them here.  This is part 1 and I am sure that there will be more to follow.