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Confession No. 2

November 16, 2010

I should be especially ashamed of what I’m about to admit, because when I was an adolescent, my mother victimized me with the same evil deeds, and I was so upset about it.  But I have not learned.

I have a very hard time stopping myself from reading my kids’ journals.

But since Lemon doesn’t keep one (as far as I know), I guess I just mean “I have a hard time not reading Mouse’s journal.”

I work on blaming her:  “if she would only TALK about things more, I owuldn’t have to read her journal.”  But I know that it isn’t a good excuse.

I need to either decide it’s okay for me to do it (for now) or stop doing it.

IN the meantime …

A couple of the things I’ve learned from reading her journal:

  • Her close friend told her she was fat, and picked on her for having a flat chest.  Her response was “but I think I’m thin, because last week, someone asked me if I was anorexic.  So I must be thin, right?  I also think I’m fit – I play sports every day!”
  • Then she went on to talk about how she would only eat fruit for snacks, and she would do crunches – 50 in the morning/50 at night.
    • No!  Wait a minute!!!!
      • FIRST:  this *friend* is now on my shit list.  How dare she?  Why would she?  And I had many moments of being ready to call her mother (my close friend) to let her know what was going on.  Because … come ON!
      • SECOND: The child is 5’2 and she weighs 90 pounds, if that.  She has a freaking 6 pack. She is strong, she is tall, she is lean …
      • THIRD:  Even if she wasn’t — how is that a FRIEND???
      • FOURTH: Why is she so easily swayed?
      • fifth: oh no.  it’s bc she’s afraid of getting out of shape like her mother. [see how selfish i am?]
  • Last spring, all of her friends were ganging up on her, and making her feel on the outs.  She didn’t know what was going on, and was confused.
    • I knew something was wrong.  I just knew it.  She was telling me everything was fine, but spending more and more time in the house while her friends were just outside playing on the block.  She was saying she just “didn’t feel like playing.’  But she seemed down.  I asked & asked – she didn’t budge. Everything was fine.  Things did end up fine before they all went their separate ways for the summer, but it upsets me that she can’t just say “yeah, mom, things feel funny with my friends.”

I don’t know what to do to get her to talk to me more about these things.  i don’t feel like we’re not close.  We talk a lot, and we’re happy and comfortable spending time together.  But she does have certain lines.  I am her Mother.  I get much conversation on many things; and none on other things.  She likes to spend time with me, seeks me out, looks forward to our time together – I am sure of that.  But she does not want me to talk to her about boys, or about her friendships, or about sex (god forbid).

But is that okay?

It’s really not that Lemon talks to me more about these things.  She just chatterchatterchatters all the time, and often it’s with stories about this thing that happened while she was at so-and-so’s house, and I can pick up on dynamics through these stories.  She recently had a falling out with a friend she’d had since third grade – someone whose mother I am friends with and who I had a very good rapport with and kind of miss – and it was like pulling teeth to figure out wht went on there (and I’m still not sure I have the real story).

Is it all just none of my business?  When does it become my business?  If Mouse is having severe body image issues, and is decreasing her food intake because her friend was being an ass — isn’t that my business?  If Lemon is being unkind and reacting to the pressure of entering high school by making decisions that hurt her friends of years upon years … isn’t that something that I should be talking to her about?

I mean … they’re 12 and 14.  Not 22 and 24.

And … should I stop reading the journal?

[this is hard.]

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5 comments

  1. Working on the assumption the kids don’t know about this blog?? I’d hate for her to find out this way…

    Also, I can’t say I wouldn’t do the same thing.


  2. no, they don’t know about the blog. also – i am seriously considering telling her that i read the journal, especially in regards to the “fat” issue. just to be able to discuss openly.


  3. No, don’t tell her you read it. Bring up the body issue thing separately. You want her to trust you.


  4. […] to talk to me about what’s going on than the girls are themselves.  No exception here. I had been stressed about a recently-failed friendship of Lemon’s, and wasn’t sure I had the whole story. […]


  5. […] for the first time since my last post on the subject, I rifled through Mouse’s room this morning after she left for school, landing on her little […]



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