He is back. He called me minutes ago trying to figure out what all the fuss is about. It was NOT him at the bus depot this morning although I gotta tell you - that with the fact that DF locked EVERYTHING up tight last night stating "Well he COULD make it here and get stuff, to pawn." Made me wonder about the bus comment. My first thought is always that he will head to see biodad to hurt him for what he did to him. Maybe kids really do let go of stuff we can not. Now the big question is this: To sign papers to send him to another placement I know nothing about, not too far from where he is (5-10 minutes). It is said to be more structured, locked facility or rather LOCKED gates (oh puhlease) and they make the kids go to school daily for their GED. Getting a job off campus is a perk not a given. I don't know the people, have never heard of the place. It's a lot more structure. The current placement has a very open policy. They don't force the kids to obey. They KNEW (this makes me mad enough to perk) Dude was leaving the campus the other night, they knew where he was going, they even KNEW which house he would be at. AND (ARGH) he did come home check in, and then leave again. Apparently without permission. What did I get? "He's a runaway." I'm so stinking angry if I had false teeth I would have spit them out. Dude informs me that he has NO idea what any of this is about. He said "They knew where I was, I told them." then he states that he HAS been doing better since they threatened to throw him out of the group home 2 weeks ago - I could call and talk to anyone about it. He's been trying to get his chores done- and getting to his community service, going to school when they have it and getting up, taking a shower - and he even said the things he's bad on were doing his chores on time, swearing and using profanity too much, and sometimes playing his stereo too loud. Other than that he believes he's been helpful and if I sign papers for him to go to the thugwarehouse - he will run. Well the caseworker is now mad at me because I shouldn't have told him our plans. I said - this involves him why can't he know? He's 17 not 7. Don't you think he deserves a chance to have a say in if he goes or stays? And apparently the woman who runs this group home (absentee due to health issues) that said to leave Dude there she'd work with him - hasn't seen him since. What's up with that? No one can tell me,but now they think after leaving campus without permission - he should go. He was in a truck with a drunk neighbor that hit a tree, flipped and rolled down a mountain where he laid for hours, he was hit by a car and taken to a hospital (care was a neighbor) the local town won't hire ANY of these boys because of the reputation of the home, yet they promise to get them jobs, and help with Integrated Listening Systems (ILS) -and yet no one has shown him how to fill out an application, or balance, count money - save money, cook, clean - they just say DO IT, and for the job ? Handed him a phone book and said "Call some places." I asked for the weekend to get my thoughts together even though I already think he should move to a place where he's going to be watched closer - but if he does move in 8 months when he's 18 - they have no place for him. The other place - that is letting him learn (apparently zip) by lifes lessons - will keep him indefinitely through his probation. I set my phone down today and for the first time in my life I uttered the words "I HATE KIDS." and went back to my little hole. Really Dude? You KNEW you couldn't come home for Christmas when you talked to your probation officer when? OH Last month!! And you were going to tell me when? OH I see - you thought you could manipulate her to change her mind and allow you to come home? OH it's what - up to ME if I'll allow you - you can? For a week? WOW....lets see.....um....I'll think about it. Then I hear in his voice the disappointment - There is no tree there, no gifts and he has (in his words) ONCE AGAIN - F'd up (sorry bout the language Mom) Christmas. I am going home on the freeway so I avoid any Red Dot stores. Honest to Pete I'd look like Lost Yet Found that day she bought all the Everclear - and if my box hit the ground and the bottles broke I'd lap it up on all fours in the parking lot right off the asphalt. DEAR GOD - I need a break. From the break I've gotten, because it's breaking me. Thanks for listening - and for all the care - it really counts Hugs Starbie the asphalt liquor licking Barbie - Well if you gotta learn to drink you may as well do it right.