OMG, major league compassion

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TerryJ2, Aug 28, 2009.

  1. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I had an uncharacteristic temper tantrum yesterday.

    I was supposed to show up at a friend's house to go to an event in another city.

    There was no way I could realistically pick up difficult child at school (the carpool line is unpredictable), get him a drive-through snack, drop him off at husband's ofc, and be at D's the house on time. I called and was told, no big deal, continue on.
    Long story short, I ended up being 25 min. late.

    D has quite a temper. She is a control freak about time. I tend to run late. We have had arguments about this issue b4. She has no children and no husband (divorced) and has no clue how hard it is to master the art of being early or on time with-a difficult child. (I may have posted about her on WC, can't recall.)

    The more I thought about it, the more I fretted. I just knew she would bite my head off. By the time I got to her house, I was a wreck.

    But I was right--she was PO'd. She gave me the cold shoulder. When I got into the back seat, I asked B to pull over because I felt like something was wrong. (You know how your stomach goes in knots and the hair on your arms stands up? I felt like that.) She shouted "NO! The more we talk the later we are." She was clearly very angry. I said pull over, and poor B was like Gumby, trying to please both of us. Stop, go, Stop, Go.

    I knew that D would fume and yell the entire way (over 1 hr) -- once she starts, she pummels you into the ground. She yells and uses the F-word and goes ballistic. I may have been deserving of a reprimand, but did not want to put up with-her out-of-proportion anger, stuck in the back seat, all the way to another city. She said she was in a bad mood and hungry and just wanted to get going. I understood, but still didn't want to be around her, judging from past experience.

    I said something about the hassel of time and I never should have agreed to go and I couldn't deal with-the stress and I needed to get out.
    I got out and slammed the door. Hard.

    I have never, ever, ever done that b4 with-my friends.

    I drove home in tears, mad at myself, mad at her, totally worn out.

    difficult child and husband came home and difficult child asked me why I was home (and in my nightgown, and crying). I told him I'd gotten in a fight with-D because I was late.

    difficult child said, "Doesn't she understand that you have responsibilities and a family to take care of and that they come first, and that it's really hard to get through all the traffic on time?"
    Then he gave me an enormous hug. I cried on his shoulder. Mostly, I was crying because he hugged me and was so empathetic. I was in shock!
    There is hope!!!!

    Anyone reading this would think it was a perfectly normal response, but coming from my difficult child, it is a miracle. I am in shock and awe. :surprise::D

    (I have spoken with-my friends and everything is fine now. I am not going to make any commitments to anything that is not within the city limits on a weeknight. It's just too much effort. Live and learn.)
  2. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    I'm glad your difficult child rose to the occasion. It's hard to balance everything and make people happy when you end up twisted in knots. Hugs. Good idea to not go with this particular friend when you can't committ to a time.
  3. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Good for difficult child...what's up with this friend?
    Depending on the circumstances, sometimes I head off situations by apologzing for my part of a being late. However, truth be told, you know in your heart, your friend should be more understanding of the extra burdens you have on your plate with a special needs child. And of course, there are no circumstances, even if you are 100% at fault, were she would have the right to use the F-word with you or something along those lines. Yep, better to allow lots and lots of time when attempting to go out with her or not make the attempt. And if it tends to always be stressful, then that is something to mull over. How wonderful that your son honored your resonsibilities as a mom and showed you tremendous care by giving you a hug. :D
  4. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    I think what stands out for me is that you TOLD her you would be late. You did your part in calling ahead of time to explain. If it was going to be an issue, she should have said, "We would still love to have you come. However, I really don't want to be late and can only wait an extra 15 minutes and then will need to leave." You would do your best to get there and all would understand what each person is determined to do (you get there ASAP and she leave with or without you).

    I am so sorry your evening was ruined. I think you set a good example of getting out of the situation instead of sitting there and letting her anger roar at you.

    You difficult child is a sweetheart. He really loves his mom! So cool! Almost worth going through the pain to see your difficult child shine?

    I am glad everything is o.k. today.
  5. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Wow. I am so glad difficult child said all that to you, that is awesome and he is right. Hugs.

    Sounds like the friend, D, has a completely different life. Maybe she is a little gfgish her self?
  6. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Sounds like difficult child said just the right thing! Hugs to you.
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Almost worth going through the pain to see your difficult child shine?

    I know. Life is weird. ;)

    Yes, she can be difficult child-ish herself. I can be hypersensitive, not a good combination with-a demanding personality like she has. And she really has a potty mouth, which really annoys me. I find it embarrassing in social situations.
    She can really rise to the occasion, though, when there's a health issue--for example, she helped out a lot when I had breast cancer, and stopped by to help husband when he had rhinoplasty and I was out of town--and she can be very fun and funny. Part of the problem is that she is in a point in her life where she just wants to have fun, and kids do not come into the equation. She will most likely never marry again because she can't find anyone with-o kids, and she doesn't want to deal with-stepkids.

    Anyway, it is definitely a good idea not to go anywhere with-her if I have to commit to a time. It's a bit better now that difficult child is 12, but when he was 3 and raging, it was so chaotic, well, you all know how that is. The best thing to do is to call her as soon as I leave my house and then she can leave her house and we can coordinate.
  8. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    Such maturity, difficult child. Way to go!
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    What a great kid you have!! This shows he truly IS capable of compassion and that he realizes that you often have to put family and kids ahead of an outing with friends.

    difficult child's action not only give me that warm fuzzy feeling - like sitting in a window seat with your favorite blankie, a book and and sipping hot cocoa while watching the first snowfall of the year. Just a wonderful, warm hopeful feeling.

    It really shows that he cares about you and that he understands that you do a lot of things you don't really WANT to do but do anyway for your family. A HUGE leap in maturity comes with that understanding.

    You and husband have worked so hard with him so that he CAN improve and this is just a big ole A+++++++ for ALL of you!

    Thank you so much for sharing! Be SURE to document this in a journal, poem or parent report.
  10. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    D doesn't sound like much of a friend....

    Visiting with friend should not cause such stress and anxiety. Something is wrong with that relationship, in my opinion. Maybe you need a friend who is more understanding and empathetic?


  11. Star*

    Star* call 911


    As I've gotten older I've found that a lot of times people are put into our lives for different reasons and different amounts of time. I've learned something from every single person I've met. When someone said "Earth is the Kindergarten for heaven." I thought it was a really odd statement, but if you think about it, it's very true. What you learned from a person like your friend is invaluable to pass on to not only yourself, but your children and how they behave in situations where THEY or YOU may be late or have to wait on someone. Tolerance is a great teacher.

    The fact that you came home, the fact that you did not allow your friend to bully you, the fact that you didn't allow her to control you, the fact that you did not allow her to use language that is unacceptable to you, the fact that you showed how hurt you were and the fact that you asked for tolerance? All these things went into a little computer in your sons head - and the reward from prior learning? The hug. Makes me smile to think that my nephew (despite other times and rages) GOT those lessons and did not like seeing MY friend cry. BIGGER SMILE. :D

    WAY TO GO KIDDO. You made my heart glad today.

    Thanks for sharing that Terry- It's nice to know. Really, really nice. ;)
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thank you. I agree. :)
    I have to remember these times and know that difficult child will rise to the occasion again. And more often, as he matures. I'm hoping I can hold onto these "new" occasions when the bad times happen. And they will. They will some day balance out.
  13. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    by the way - I would tell D that you simply cannot ride to events with her. IF you decide to do something again (it would be a long time before I could bring myself to do that after her behavior) tell her up front that this is a lower priority than making sure your son and rest of the family are set up to do whatever in your absence.

    Tell her up front that if she ever EVER treats you to her yelling, cursing, toddler temper tantrum you will cease speaking to her. Period.

    Suggest she ask her doctor for some xanax because she is just wound WAY too tight. I am quite sure her job is probably subjected to her behaviors and she may be on the edge of a job hunt simply because people who behave this way are often in the first couple of batches of people to get laid off.

    If she gives you grief or another tantrum I will round up the posse to go give her a big ole helping of HER hospitality!
  14. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Oh, I tried that 2 yrs ago. She blew up and it lasted 2 wks. Sigh.
    Long, long ago, b4 I had kids, she told me she had some wiggy people in her family, and asked me to promise to tell her if she ever got weird. I promised.
    Well, that's what happened 2 yrs ago. I should have scripted myself, because I blew it, talked in circles, really ruined it.
    But I think she wasn't receptive to it, anyway. (Rolling my eyes.)
    So the next time she gets really wiggy, I'm outa here.
    This time, it was short lived and SHE called me to make up. Which I thought was very nice, considering that I was, in fact, late.
    Around and around it goes.
    P.S. She's had cancer, as have I, so she cannot take hormones. I suspect that's part of the problem. However, Effexor, Prozac, or Xanax would take the edge off, in my humble opinion. You can lead a horse to water ...

    Meanwhile, difficult child can be my buddy if and when this happens again. I never thought I'd say that. Woo hoo! :) :) :)
  15. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Well, that's what I did, by slamming the car door, LOL! Thanks for the offer, though. I'll keep it in mind. ;)