Tuesday, September 30, 2008


We're still in Atlanta visiting TOIAW's twin and family. I wanted to write this morning just in case TOIAW and I don't survive another day of caring for our nephew. Don't laugh...it's entirely possible. I've never seen anything like it. In my last post I briefly mentioned that he was kicked out of his last day care/pre-school for violence (choking and kicking another child). This makes the fourth school from which he was expelled. In case you're wondering, he's four and a half--you do the math.

It's excruciatingly uncomfortable to be around him and his parents. His mother is mentally and physically exhausted when dealing with him and his father makes multiple empty threats but eventually reaches a breaking point which, more often than not, results in an overreaction. I know I sound like an arm chair parent but I've watched it happen time after time in the past three days. His mother thinks he is ADHD and even though I think that is a distinct possibility, I would like to see nephew on a natural diet (so far I've counted one meal and one snack where he did not have a food or drink that contained high-fructose corn syrup and you know where there's HFCS, there's plenty of other junk as well) and a consistent discipline schedule before I'm convinced. It's just so hard to know because he's really never been disciplined. When he reached an age (about two, I think) where it became difficult to take him out in public, they hired a babysitter who was employed whenever they went out for anything and many times even when they were both at home.

I got a little more insight into the family dynamics when we had an adults' night on Saturday. Nephew's parents had a HUGE row in the car on the way home. It was beyond uncomfortable. The next afternoon my SIL and I ran some errands and she vented to me in a way I've never experienced before. It was so sad, I cried. The only way I know to give hope is through my faith and she is an avowed (and angry) atheist. She is so unhappy in her marriage and life, as is my BIL who told TOIAW he is only happy 40% of the time, that she has very little energy available to deal with her child. TOIAW and I are so stinkin' sad right now we can hardly stand it.

We're either leaving either late this evening or early tomorrow morning. Please, Lord, let there be fuel for us! I am flying from DC to Oklahoma early Thursday morning and will be there for about ten days. By the time I return, TOIAW will have begun his language classes and, with any luck, I will be over my nausea* and we'll be back to a normal life!

*I'm still nauseous but it no longer lasts all day which is encouraging :)


April said...

Hi Rachel,

I stumbled on your blog...can't even remember how! Anyway, I'm so sorry to hear you've been having such a tough time during your stay with your husband's family. It does sound like a very uncomfortable and unfortunate situation to be in. Just focus on the relief you'll feel when you're finally able to head back to your home. I pray that your SIL and BIL can somehow find resolution for the sake of their marriage and family. Take care!.

The Gutsy Mom said...

I am adding them all to my prayers. It is the only way I know to give hope, too. I am so sad for your SIL and BIL, your nephew, and for you and TOIAW. The situation seems untenable. In high school, our rector said to us, the night before we graduated, "It doesn't matter if you believe in God or not. I do, and I am asking Him to go with each of you into your lives." Obviously, this has stuck with me ever since, and it is what I am praying for your SIL, that God goes with her into her life, whether she believes in Him or not.

The Gutsy Mom said...

PS, your "armchair parenting" sounds right on to me. I can't STAND to see parents not follow through. And I bet you're right about the junk food, too.