Monday, June 13, 2016

Broken Arm

By everything left unspoken, our son continued to stay at our home and we found ourselves constantly walking on egg shells around him--trying to avoid conflict.  It never seemed to work.  

One morning, I was working in our office,  when he came to me and asked if he could have a ride to the skate park.  I told him that I couldn’t take him anywhere until I finished what I was working on. 

Then, the barrage became relentless the entire time that I was trying to finish my work and get ready:  “You have to hurry…  You are making me late…   Will you put my hair in a pony tail?  It doesn’t look right.  Look at all the hair that you didn’t get in it.  I look like a heroin addict today because my hair looks so stupid…  Well, there is no way I can go to Applebee’s to apply for a job looking like this…  Are you almost done?  I was supposed to be there an hour and a half ago…  I can’t find my I.D.  That is just great.  Now what am I going to do without an I.D?”  (It was in the pocket of a pair of his pants).

It was like being with a five year old who has no capacity for patience.  And he was trying MY patience to the point that I wondered if he was purposely goading me into starting a battle.   I was biting my tongue and holding my breath and doing everything I could to keep my cool even though having him want to be in charge of my time schedule was driving me crazy.

I finally was able to drop him off, but of course, in addition to all of the things that I had done so far that day to ruin his life, I topped the morning off when I wouldn’t give him any money for lunch.  He got out and slammed the truck door shut without so much as a “see you later.”

We hadn’t heard from him all day and by that evening, I was more than happy to have some precious “away” time with my husband.  We went out to dinner and had just started to eat our meal when my husband’s phone began to ring and we “missed” 20 phone calls from our son. 

When the phone kept ringing and ringing, it seemed like we might as well just answer his call and find out what was so urgent, even though we would have liked to continue our dinner without the drama that was possibly coming our way.  As soon as my husband said hello, our son colorfully said, “If you cared at all to answer your f-ing phone when your son calls, then you would have found out half an hour ago that I fell at the skate park and broke my f-ing arm.  It is raining and it would be really nice if my “parents” could tear themselves away from whatever they are doing to come and get me.”  When my husband tried to get a word in to ask if the arm was broken or just bruised, our son accused him of being "snippy" with him.

We hurried to finish our meal and then picked him up at a grocery store where he had gone to get out of the tiny bit of rain that had started to come down.  The grocery store happened to be right next to an Insta-care, so I told him that I needed to look at his arm to determine if we needed to stop in at that Insta-care to get an x-ray.    

He was so mad at us for having the nerve to finish eating before we came to get him (even though we DID skip dessert) that he wouldn’t let me look at his arm and refused to see a doctor.  He said, "If you could just be NICE parents and buy me a a Little Caesar’s pizza (since I haven't had anything to eat all day), then, you could just take me home and leave me the hell alone."   

Wanting to avoid one more thing for him to get upset about, we actually did stop to pick up a pizza. 

When he got what he wanted, instead of being a little bit grateful, he unleashed his anger again about the events of the night as if it were our fault that he had hurt his arm and as if he needed to prove that we were terrible parents for thinking he was lying about breaking his arm and making him wait as long as we did before we picked him up.      

It wouldn’t have mattered if we had been five minutes away when he called, he still would have found a reason to take everything out on us.  Even though it was pointless to try to defend ourselves, we told him that we came as soon as we could and that even though OUR meal been cut short, we had just willingly bought HIM a meal and that maybe he should be thankful instead of angry.  When he wouldn't drop it, we suggested that if didn’t want to show any appreciation for what we are able to do for him, then maybe he should stop asking us to do things for him. 

He agreed that he would never ask us for anything.


At home, he didn’t seem to be in a lot of pain and wouldn't even take the Ibuprofen that I set out for him. 

But, the next morning, he knocked on my bedroom door and said that he thought he probably DID need to go to the doctor.   He finally let me look at his elbow and it was really swollen and he said it hurt really bad.  He wanted to know when I would be able to take him and I told him that I could be ready in about one hour.
He said that was okay and then as he turned to leave my room, he told me that I needed to tell his dad to get off the computer so that he could use it while he waited.  I said, “YOU can go ask him if you can use the computer while you are waiting.”

He replied, “He is a dick and will keep using it as long as possible just so that I can't.”  This was as far from the truth as it could get.  If he had asked my husband to use the computer, my husband would have gotten out of the office as soon as possible, just to avoid another fight.

I started laughing because it was so ludicrous that he would say that about my husband, fully expecting that it would make me do what he wanted me to do.  He got angry and said, “What is so funny?  I like jokes.  Please tell me what is so f-ing funny.” 

I said, “That you seriously think that if you call your dad a dick and say awful things about him that I will go ask him to let you use the computer.”

I guess the only thing that he could do with my explanation was get angrier.  I was sitting there in my bed waiting for him to get out of my room so that I could get dressed and ready to take him to the doctor and he wouldn’t stop going on and on with his tirade about how badly I treated him.  After all, he simply wanted to watch some shows on the internet while he ate breakfast and I should have wanted to help him do that.   

I grabbed my phone and began sending text after text to my husband to tell him to come upstairs and rescue me (even though he should have been able to hear that there was an angry exchange going on).   But, his phone was not with him in the office and he had no idea that I needed him. 

I finally told my son that we were finished talking and that he was more than capable of asking his father for the use of the computer.   If he felt that he couldn’t take care of that himself, then he was out of luck.  I even suggested that if he needed entertainment while he ate that he might try to read something.  

He said, “I can’t read while I eat, MOM!  I am blind and I have a broken arm.  How am I supposed to eat and hold a book right next to my face, MOM?”

I said, “Look, I just offered an alternate entertainment solution to you.  If you don’t like my suggestion, don’t do it.  Quit getting upset about it.  It is stupid to keep this conversation going.”

Then, he turned everything around and got mad at me for using the word "stupid".  He said he wasn’t allowed to tell US that what we are saying is stupid, so why should I be able to tell him that what he was saying was stupid?  I replied that I hadn’t said that what he was saying was stupid, I said that it was stupid to keep this conversation going.  But, that if I did say that something he was doing WAS stupid, I had every right to do that because I am the parent and he is the kid.

Then he left my room, went into the bathroom, and supposedly called someone to ask them to take him to the Insta-Care because wasn’t going anywhere with me after I said he was stupid and called him a kid. 

At least, without him standing there in my room, I was able to get out of bed, grab my robe, and go find my husband.    

Of course, that was a mistake.  As soon as my son heard me talking to my husband about what he had somehow missed hearing, he charged into the office with us and the tirade started all over again.  It felt like everything was spinning out of control to the point that I didn’t know what we were even fighting about anymore. 

How does agreeing to take him to the doctor turn into a blow-up?

We weren’t even begging to take him to the doctor, but he made sure to tell us that now, he wouldn’t go with us under any circumstances.  We told him that since he wasn’t 18 yet, the doctor would need our consent for treatment.  That made him even angrier because we were calling him a "kid" again.  He said he was just going to get out of our lives because we were f-ing idiots and that he would just suffer with his broken arm since we obviously didn’t care about it anyway.

We suggested one more time that he calm down enough to think about what he was doing because he probably really needed to get his arm x-rayed.

By then, I had taken all that I could take that morning and I went up to the bathroom and turned on the fan so that I couldn’t hear anything going on downstairs. 

I could tell that the arguing had picked up again, but I made myself stay upstairs.  It went on and on and I wondered what else they were arguing about when suddenly, my husband was outside the door asking me for the insurance card.

While I was getting the card out of my wallet, my husband seemed to be putting an end to any more discussion by saying, “There are only three things that I want to ask of you.  Get a job.  Don’t use drugs.  And be nice.  Do those three things and there should be no more reason to have blow-ups like the one this morning.”

Our son replied, “Well, there are only two things I ask of you and you can’t manage to do yours, so leave me the hell alone and don’t talk to me.”

I wonder what the two things that we can't manage are?    

I guess they are to leave him alone.

And don’t talk to him.

Like it would be that easy.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

He's Back!

The day after Easter, he went to the skate park, but then called to see if he could stay at home again that night.  I asked him if he really had a place to stay or not, but he just lied and said that he hadn’t been able to get in touch with Alex, so he didn’t want to walk all the way to his house if he wasn’t back yet.  I thought he had probably done something to lose the opportunity to stay there, but he wasn’t admitting anything. 

After a few days of this, I felt like we were being used and manipulated again and thought we should tell him that our house didn’t have a revolving door and that he either lived here and obeyed ALL of the rules or he didn’t.  He wasn't going to be allowed to just keep coming and going at his pleasure. 

He responded with the statement that he was “thinking about coming back home.”

I asked him why he wasn’t staying at Alex’s anymore and he answered that he could still stay there if he wanted to, but that Alex’s parents were alcoholics and that it was not a good environment for him to be in if he was going to stay clean.  I think he knew that if he put it that way we would be more likely to give him another chance.   It sounded like a very responsible thing for him to say.  Later he told me that they didn't like how he kept coming and going and told him that he couldn't stay there anymore.  I felt that they probably expected him to start paying rent or contributing to the household in some way, but he wasn't doing that, so he was asked to leave.

Letting him move back in scared me to death.  I was very worried about how we would be able to get along with each other.   I didn't want to live in a house full of daily arguing and contention.

We told him that he could stay here but that we would have to go over the house rules in detail again.  My husband took care of this because I just didn’t feel like I could handle any more battles.  He made sure to point out that our son was not allowed to stay in the house alone and that if we went to the store, or an appointment, or even out of town for the weekend, he had to find somewhere else to go because he wasn’t going to be given a key to the house.  He told him that he had to be nice to us, that he couldn’t just sit around playing computer games all day, that I wasn’t going to be his taxi service, that we weren’t going to give him money, that he had to go to AA meetings, and that he had to find a job.

All of that went over really well with him.

He kept interrupting my husband, which would cause my husband to feel that he needed to repeat himself to make sure that he had been heard.  Our son started yelling at him for saying the same thing over and over again.  My husband told him he was just trying to make sure that he was understood and it kept going back and forth like that until my husband told him that if he didn’t like listening to the rules, he didn’t have to live here. 

My son came upstairs and yelled through the bedroom door telling me what a dick his dad was and wanted me to come out and drive him somewhere because it was obvious he wasn’t going to be able to stay here.  I did not comply and eventually,  I heard him downstairs arguing with my husband again.   I felt that I should just stay out of it because sometimes when I get involved, things escalate.  My son kept coming upstairs, demanding that I come out and listen to him, but then wouldn’t get what he wanted from me, and would go back downstairs and start arguing with my husband all over again.

Finally, through the door, I contributed, “If you are going to live here you have got to be willing to listen to us.  You have got to stop arguing.  If you don’t get what you want, or hear the answer that you want, or have a hard time getting something to work out the way you want it to—you can’t freak out!  You just have to accept things the way they are and leave it at that.  You can’t berate us on and on because you aren’t getting your way.  You have to accept the rules and be happy that you can stay here.”

Then, he reverted to, “Well, if you would only do this…….then I wouldn’t have to do that…….”    It always comes down to that.  I have to conform to his expectations and if I don't, it gives him permission to act like a jerk.  

His parting shot was that he was not going to ask me for anything ever again.

Famous last words.

I wanted to make him leave that night because we shouldn’t have to go through this every single day when all we were trying to do was give him a place to stay. Letting him live here didn't mean that we had to give him total control over us and our home.

We felt like we were “damned if we do and damned if we don’t.”

We let him stay at our house and then he freaks out over everything.

We don’t let him stay at our house and then he freaks out over everything.

So, why did we let him stay when it seemed like we were just in another no-win situation? 

Because that night it was raining.  No matter how awful he was acting, we couldn’t send him out into the rain with nowhere to go. 

Even though it was tempting. 

Saved by the rain.


My husband went out of town for a couple of days before Easter.  We agreed that while he was gone, we would act like we were both out of town so that I would not have to deal with any of our son's drama while he was gone.  I hoped to have some nice, peaceful alone time.  I planned to screen all my calls and just not answer if my son called me.  I felt that I deserved a break, especially since my husband was getting one. 

But, early the next afternoon, the telephone calls started.  I didn’t answer.  Later that evening, I heard from my husband.  He had been out of cell phone range all day and when he finally had a signal again, he found many missed calls from our son.  Then, he called our son back. 

He told my husband that he wanted to know if we were able to go out to dinner for Easter with him.  And then, for some unknown reason, my husband told him that HE was still out of town and wouldn’t be home for at least 4 or 5 hours and that he might be able to get me to go out to dinner with him, if he texted me. 

I had no idea what happened to the plan to let me have some peace and quiet that day and felt that I was being put in the position of having no choice but to go out to dinner with our son.  If I didn’t he would have said, “You never want to do anything with me and all I wanted to do was celebrate Easter with you.”   So, I picked him up at his park, and we went to one of the restaurants that he likes because they serve huge portions of food.  He ate like he was starving to death.  He actually seemed to be trying very hard to be pleasant.  I tried really hard, too even though I was on edge during the entire meal.  I never knew what I would say that would potentially set him off.  I gave him the Easter gifts that I had gotten for him.  He seemed happy to receive them.

But, I still wondered if he there was an alternate agenda to this little Easter dinner together.

As we left the restaurant, I asked him where he wanted me to drop him off, and he replied, “I was kind of wondering if I could spend Easter at your house.  Alex’s family is having their own Easter celebration and I don’t want to intrude on it.”  

I knew there was an agenda.

I should have been happy to have my child back at home for the holiday.  Holidays can be lonely when all of your kids are gone, right?  I was not particularly optimistic about how happy this holiday was going to be, now.  After all, we didn't have a really great track record with happiness lately.  

He was nice to my husband when he got home that night and told him that he had a good dinner with me.  Things were going fairly well.  

On Easter, as we were driving back home after visiting our grandsons so that they could show us what the Easter Bunny brought to them, our son wanted us to stop at a Carl’s Jr. to buy him lunch.  But, I didn’t want to do that.  I had just bought dinner for him the night before.  There was a big ham in the refrigerator just waiting to become our Easter dinner.  Ham was one of his favorite foods, so I thought he should have been excited about having that to eat.   However, I didn’t know that he had already made himself a midnight snack out of the ham the night before and he didn’t think he should have to eat it twice in a row, especially since we were driving right past Carl’s Jr. and how hard could it be for us to stop and buy him some food? 

When we said that we had plenty of food at home and that he was more than welcome to eat anything that he wanted when we got there, he got angry and complained that because we were so cheap, he was going to have to walk all the way to the skate park to bum a couple of dollars off someone, then walk all the way back to Carl’s Jr. to buy himself some lunch, and then walk all the way back to the skate park again.   He wouldn’t let it drop and kept trying to make a big issue out of it.  He probably thought that the more he argued, the more likely he would be to get what he wanted since it would have been easier to just buy him the food than have this become a big deal.  But, we didn't make that decision and the demands didn't stop.  

The Easter blow-up came to a head when I finally yelled at him to just shut up about it.  I said, “You can either eat our food or not, but I don’t want to hear anything else about Carl’s Jr.!  We are not going to buy you lunch today!” 

Then, he told me what I was just in case I had forgotten (calling me one of his favorite names for me).  

When we got home, I went upstairs to my room and thought that it would be better to sit up there all day than to be around my son. 

I listened to the sounds downstairs and heard him cooking food in the kitchen and heard him go into the family room to watch TV with my husband.  I guess he decided that ham twice in a row was better than nothing and better than a 10 mile walk. 

I didn’t understand why he couldn’t be courteous and pleasant and even try to show his appreciation for us letting him stay at our house instead of being demanding, rude, and disrespectful. 

The tension in the house was high every time I ventured downstairs.

So, I spent most of the day in my room, out of the line of fire. 

Having a happy Easter.


Every time we encountered him in the next few weeks, we wondered why we kept trying to help him him.  He was never appreciative of it.   I guess it is just that no matter what has happened in the past, when your child acts like they need your help, you hope that you are doing the right thing and you hope that this time it will all work out. 

One day I picked him up at the park and took him to the orthodontist.  I was afraid to take him alone, so my sister came along.  She was astonished at the way he spoke to me, at his attitude, and at his manipulative tactics.  Even with her there, he was rude and abusive.  But, to me, it was so mild compared to his usual behavior that I was a little bit amused by the whole thing. Apparently, I just need a chaperone every time he is around me.  

My husband and I took him to meet with his Probation Officer concerning the “possession of drug paraphernalia in a park" charges.   The Probation Officer was very upset to see him again.  He told him that he was lucky he was still a juvenile and hoped that he got this all cleared up before he turned 18, or his parents might be visiting him in a few months between glass partitions. 

Our son didn't feel that he should be in this trouble again and informed the P/O that it was stupid that pot was illegal and the only reason he wasn’t still using it every day was because he thought he was going to be drug tested.   The P/O stated that marijuana was still illegal in the United States, period—no matter what some of the other states were doing and that just because you think something shouldn’t be illegal, doesn’t give you the right to break the law anyway.

After we left the courthouse, he ranted for 10 minutes and we couldn't say anything right.  So, when we dropped him off, he left all of the information about getting his GED and going to counseling in my truck.  Apparently, he wasn’t going to take the P/O’s advice about getting started on that so that he would look like he was trying get his life on track when he appeared before the judge a few weeks later.

Two weeks went by without any interactions and then suddenly, there he was on our doorstep with his two backpacks, begging to be able to spend the night at our house. 

I immediately wanted to say, "No, absolutely not.  The last time you stayed here we had a big blow-up and I am sick and tired of that happening every single time we are around you."   

I felt like I was between a rock and hard place.   A huge feeling of dread came over me because if he was actually here asking to stay then he really must need a place.  

But, I didn't want him to be there that night.  I told him that it wasn’t a good time for him to stay because it was my last night babysitting my grandson before his parents picked him up on their way back from their vacation in Hawaii.  He would be going home to Kansas City with them and I wanted to make every minute that I had with him as special as I could.  

Of course, I was promised that everything would be just fine and that it would really help him out to be able to use our computer to apply for some jobs and to check out the online GED program.  He also said he would like to spend time with his nephew and see his sister the next day.   I knew he was just feeding me a line, but how could I turn him away? 

Then, the next morning, he broke his promise.  Right in front of my little grandson, he lost control because his I-Pod was not working.  He was swearing and speaking in a way that was very inappropriate and he wouldn’t stop.  He kept insisting that I tell him how to fix the I-Pod even though I didn’t know anything about what was wrong it.  I said, “This is exactly why I was reluctant to let you be around me and your nephew.  I can’t have you talking like this around him.  You have to stop this now.” 

He replied, “If you weren’t acting like such a b****, I would stop.  All I want from you is to tell me what I am supposed to do if my I-Pod doesn’t start working because I need my I-Pod and I need to get it fixed right now!  If you hadn’t gotten me such a piece of sh** I-Pod, it probably would be working right now.  You should have to get me one that actually works!” 

This irrational line of thinking didn’t seem to have an ending point and since we were driving to the airport at the time, I pulled over and told him to either get out or be quiet for the rest of the drive and that he had 30 seconds to decide what he was going to do.  He refused to get out, but said, “Fine, I won’t talk to you anymore.  You never help me or, do anything for me anyway.”  

My poor grandson was so quiet in the back seat that I knew he must have been bewildered by the scene that he had been witnessing.  I am sure he had never seen anything like that in his 2 years of life.  I was so upset about my son choosing to play this game in front of this sweet little boy, that by the time we got to the airport I wanted to scream.   For the remainder of the drive, I began to sing songs to my grandson to distract him from thinking about what had just happened.  He seemed amused by it and my son, who could not listen to his I-Pod to drown me out, was pretty annoyed by it.    

Needless to say, he took off when we got back to the house without using the computer or spending time with his sister.  He also neglected to take most of his things with him.    

We didn’t see or hear from him again for a few more days.  Then, he called my husband and was very angry that I supposedly hadn’t answered my phone all day and he really needed me to bring him the backpack that he had left at our house because he needed his deodorant, clothes, and food.  I hadn’t heard a word from him for days and suddenly he was mad at me for denying him access to his deodorant.   Sometimes I just had to laugh at the things he chose to complain about.     

It is just incredible that he feels that he has the right to appear and disappear at his leisure and expected me to meet his needs at a moment’s notice, even when I had no idea that he wanted anything. 

My husband drove him to our home so that he could get his backpack.   As soon as he walked in the door he just made himself at home, took a shower, and even made some macaroni and cheese as if he were staying for awhile.  But, right after he ate, he repacked his two backpacks and walked out the door without even saying a word. 

No matter how many times I have had this experience, it is heartbreaking for me to watch him walk up the street with backpacks stuffed full of possessions on his back, not knowing where he was going. 

Not knowing when I would see him again.

Or if he was going to be all right.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Incidents of Insanity

 Day number three (after the suicide threat incident) did not get any better. 

The first thing he did when he got up late that morning was demand to use the computer.  We were holding fast to the rule that he couldn’t use the computer unless he was not smoking pot or using anything else. 

     “I want to play Starcraft.” 

“You can’t play StarCraft until you can produce a clean drug test.”

     “Drug test me, then.”

The drug test showed an error.  I usually don’t flush the urine until after I do the test (just in case I need it), but this time I did.  He refused to give me another urine sample and insisted that he was going to play StarCraft no matter what I said.

     “This is B.S.  I did my part.  It is not my fault that you screwed up the test.”

So I locked the door to the office and he yelled at me and swore at me as if that would make me change my mind. 

Since he couldn’t use the computer, he decided to play his acoustic guitar. 

     “Where are the guitar pics that I left on the table?”

“I don’t know.” 

     “Well, I didn’t move them.  You need to remember where you put them and find them for me.”

“There are two people in the house that don’t know where your guitar pics are and only one of us going to look for them.  And it isn’t me.”

Of course that didn’t go over very well with him.

While being subjected to another one of his rants, I just wanted to go to my room, lock the door, climb into bed, and hide from this insanity.

But, of course I couldn’t do that.  He would have just yelled at me through the door, or punched holes in the walls or door, or threatened to damage something just to get me to give in and do whatever he wanted me to do. 

The next thing I knew, I was being informed that his friend called and told him that the pawn shop payment of $14.00 for his pawned electric guitar was due that day and if he didn’t pay it, the guitar would be put up for sale. 

He wanted me to give him $14.00 right then and there to give to his friend.

As if anything that had gone on that day so far would have made me gladly or willingly give him money.    I said, “I won’t give you $14.00.  But, I will go with you to the pawn shop.  I'll pay to get the guitar back.  Then, I will bring it home, lock it in my room, and keep it until YOU PAY ME BACK the amount of money that I give to the pawn shop.  That way, you won’t lose your guitar if you miss a payment.” 

Instead of being glad that I was willing to do that for him, he freaked out because I wouldn’t give him $14.00.  He went right back to his position that I don’t trust him enough to give him money.  Once again, I was yelled at, berated, and f-bombed. 

This was just pure insanity. 

I sent my husband a text message and asked him to call our son to see if he could reason with him about this because I honestly felt that I just couldn’t take it anymore.  But my husband couldn’t break through the crazy wall that our son had set up for himself on this issue either.   I heard my son say, "There is no way that I will let you pay off my loan.  You'll have my guitar and then you will be sure to find some reason not to give it back to me, even if earn enough money to pay you back and there is no way in hell that I am going to take that chance.  I would rather have the chance of never getting it back from the pawn shop than trust you to give it back to me."  Then, he hung up on his dad and threw his phone at me.

His Dad kept trying to call him back, but of course he couldn’t answer because I had his phone.  I sent a text message to my husband to tell him what had happened and he started trying to call me, but I couldn’t answer because my son was in my face demanding to have an adult conversation with me.

My son had the nerve to say that I needed calm down and change my tone while we talked. 


He just threw his cell phone at me and I was the one who was being told to calm down?  

I said, “Sorry, but that ship has sailed.  The agitated tone of my voice is the tone you are going to hear based on the last three arguments of the day.  I am so upset and so sick of you treating me the way that you do that there is no way I am not going to sound irritated.”

His response to that was to call me a f-ing c*** again.  

At that point, the only thing that I wanted was to have him out of the house and as far away from me as possible.  I said, “You need to get out of here right now and I don’t want you to come back until your dad gets home.”

He decided that meant that I was kicking him out and resumed yelling and f-bombing me.  He told me that I was a hypocrite for kicking him out because he knew that I would call the cops on him as soon as he left telling them that he ran away even though I was the one who kicked him out.  He wouldn’t listen when I told him that I wasn’t kicking him out, he just absolutely had to leave the house for the rest of the day.

He started packing his backpack and said he was leaving forever and I would never see him again.  But, he wouldn’t shut his mouth the whole time that he was packing, so I locked myself in the office to try to get away from the abuse.  When I heard the front door slam, I looked out the window and saw him walking up the street with his backpack stuffed as full as he could get it. 

I felt as if I had just been beaten down.  

I was so tired and hurt by all of it.    

You would think that after being homeless, he would have been as happy as could be to be able to have a place to stay again and would have tried a lot harder to get along with me. 

But instead he seemed to feel exactly the opposite and just wanted to fight me about everything. 

For the next few days every time my phone rang, or I heard a text alert, left the house, or came back home, I experienced a feeling of terror that it was going to be my son on the phone or that he would be waiting outside the house for me. 

It’s not fair to be afraid of your own child.

Not fair at all.