Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Just When I Thought Everything Was Going OK

I knew there would be some down times.  But, I HOPED there wouldn’t be any.  I really hoped.

Sometimes I wonder if I will ever feel like it is safe to trust again.

My husband bought a foosball table at a yard sale.  He thought my son would enjoy having his own table.  He got pretty good at foosball in rehab.  My husband was just trying to find a way to reach out to our son.  He was more excited about the flip side of the foosball table that was a mini pool table.  I think that even though he played a lot of foosball and was good at it, foosball reminded him of the fact that we put him in rehab.

It seemed like a room that we have in the basement that used to be my older son’s room, was a good place to set up the foosball table.  As my husband was moving boxes and things around to make room for the table, he found an Axe deodorant container.  After he looked inside it, he brought it to me and said, “Look at this.”  When I took the lid off, there was no deodorant in it, but underneath the plastic part that the deodorant used to be on, I could see a whole bunch of red dots.  So, I pulled the plastic part out of it (yay for the Axe smell on my hands) and saw that the whole bottom of the container was full of matches. 

A deodorant container used to store matches and probably something else that would be conveniently camouflaged in a deodorant container.  We knew from research that kids use deodorant containers to hide their drugs.  And here was proof in our hands 8 months after we put him in rehab.

My stomach just dropped. 

Now I wondered when he hid it in that basement room.  And what else was still hidden down in the basement and elsewhere in the house.  I told my husband a long time ago that we would never know what was stashed in our house until we searched every square inch of it.  That night was proof of that.

But, Other than finding that Axe drug storage container, the summer had been going fairly well.  I thought my son and I were getting along great and I thought we were even getting to be pretty good friends. 

Then, I made a mistake and let him buy a game for the X-Box that I shouldn’t have.  It was a car racing game and my son had liked playing car racing games in the past, so, I took the salesman’s word that it was a good game and I didn’t even read the back of the box.  Which, I should have.  I trusted that my son and I were at a point where he wouldn’t try to be sneaky or pull the wool over my eyes.

We came home from the game store and my husband was so mad at me for letting my son get that game because it wasn’t just a car racing game.  It was filled with drugs and sex and gangs and all kinds of stuff that you just don’t want your recovering addict child to be exposed to. 

He said that there was no way that my son could play that game.

Then, all of a sudden having that game became VERY IMPORTANT to my son.

And everything went to heck from there.

We had a big battle.

It set us back about 100 miles. 

I feel like X-Box games will always come between us.  For some reason, the game was more important to him than the good feelings we have had in our house, the friendship that we had been building, and the good summer that we were having. 

My husband took him back to the game store and he got a basketball game instead.

That kept him happy for about a week. 

And then he had to have another game.

He wanted to download it onto the X-Box.  We said that we had to look at the info about the game online and also find out if we could buy the game for less money at the game store, because usually the downloads cost more than the actual disc does.

He started to get very upset.  Upset because there was a possibility we would find out that it was another game that he shouldn’t have?  Upset because he couldn’t download it when he wanted to and might have to wait for us to take him to the game store, when we had time?  Who knows?

But as soon as my husband finished reading the info about it and told my son that he MIGHT be able to get it, my son immediately started the download.  Without my knowing.  He charged it to the credit card that is on file on the X-Box for renewing the Gold Membership that is required to play games online.  A membership that I just willingly have for him out of the kindness of my heart. 

I was pretty mad when I found out that he had bought the game without my permission.  I didn’t really want to charge a game on my credit card.  Even when you pay back the credit card, it always seems like every charge just makes the balance go a little higher and a little higher and it never goes down to the point it was at before you charged something.  I told him that he is not allowed to use my credit card on the X-Box without asking me first—no matter what he “thinks” I meant. 

He said that when we said that he might be able to “get it”, he thought that meant that he could download it.  He was so worried about what he wanted that he just heard what he wanted to hear just so that he could get what he wanted to get.

I fully believe that everything that anybody has ever said about video games being bad for kids is right, because one out of every 2 arguments that we have seems to be about the x-Box.  These two weren’t the only two that we would have in the next few months.  They were just two of many. 

Have I said that I hate the X-Box?

I hate the battles about it.

I hate that I had been doing everything that I could to try to help him have a good summer and then he chose to fight and yell and treat me badly because of the stupid X-Box. 

The only feelings that matter are his feelings. 

It didn’t matter to him that I had already been having a bad day before any of this X-Box game buying stuff even happened.

I would have hoped that he could realize that maybe he should be nice to someone who was having a bad day.

But, of course not.  Because he is selfish and if he is not getting what he wants, then he doesn’t care about anything that is going on with anyone else.  It is all about him. 

He doesn’t care if we are just worried about him.  He doesn’t care that we don’t want bad influences around him. 

He is not glad that we care. 

He is not glad that we want the best for him.

It is hard to care so much.

When the caring isn’t returned.

But, I’m a parent.  I love unconditionally. 

Yup.  I do.

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