I was feeling really down. Sick. Sad. Depressed.
Because my child just doesn’t want to do anything. Nothing. Not a thing.
Except play computer games.
But nothing else. Then gets in trouble in school and gets suspended. So he’s home all day, two days.
And won’t tell a convincing story about what transpired – and of course I don’t know, they system is that they decide everything themselves there and then and issue their ‘punishment’ which is usually avoidance of their responsibility and eviction of the child.
So one doesn’t know.
And – I have previous experience – if one seeks to ascertain facts and argue the merits of the perceived judgement – guilty or not guilty – and fitness of the punishment – one then gets into a fullscale confrontation with the establishment.
Teachers and administrators fiercely defending their actions and in fact personally affronted that you might question them.
There’s nothing to be gained. It needs a radical shakeup. As so much of the world.
Back to where I was:
So it is disturbing, his behaviour and his recent predicament.
The root (to me) problem becomes evidenced very clearly by his ‘I’ll clean up my room’ thing.
In order to get out from under he’s negotiating a deal. Can he have his computer back if he ‘cleans up his room’? That really just means gets all his clothing – mainly washing done for him by us and then dumped on his bed by his brother – off the bed and into his cupboards in some kind of tidy way.
This is typical of him.
He seeks always to cut deals that mean you pay for him doing what he should have done in the first place.
A bit like schools seeking to cut deals whereby if you do something then they’ll go back to doing what they should have done all along.
So I acquiesce and then proceeds two hours of frequent interruptions to the stage where I give up trying to do anything at all.
Every couple of minutes come and see how he’s progressing. Look at this. Look at that. And he’s hardly progressing at all.
And it becomes evident that his heart is not in it. It becomes evident the message has not gotten through.
He simply doesn’t want to do it.
He has no idea of helping, doing his party, being a member of the group. Anything like that.
I can’t find the words to describe it but it simply becomes evident that the child is not developing the way one hopes, is facing entirely in the wrong direction, and one is unable to make any effective change in him.
That I simply can’t teach him.
That he’s not getting the message from me.
I might as well be talking to a brick wall for all the clever ploys I try, all the care and love I pour into the whole transaction – I might as well do nothing.
And it makes me sad. So sad I almost feel despair. I do feel despair. I almost feel total despair.
The despair at this situation, this event, leaks into the rest of my life and I feel despair at everything, everything in my life, all aspects of it.
And amongst all this I find myself thinking ‘If only he’d want to do it!’
If only he would want to help, to do his bit, to not cheat and lie, not deceive.
If only he would want to be what we want him to be.
Heartfelt cry from the innermost recesses of my mind as I sit there feeling like totally giving up. I don’t want to do this I think. I don’t want to be interrupted every ten minutes, or two minutes. I don’t want to have to continually go over and over the arguments, the rationales, the reasons for modifying his behaviour the way we want.
I don’t want this. Any of it. I don’t want to have to deal with the child.
But I have to. And my heart and soul are weary. I so much want to just do my own thing.
And then suddenly I see it.
The similarity. If only I would want to do it ! My life would be so much happier.
I should want to deal with all this.
Doubtless I’d get better results if I wanted to do it.
Just as the school would get better results if they wanted to do it.
But they of course have declared unambiguously that they don’t want to deal with. “Get out” is what they say to a child who doesn’t like being there, playing into the child’s hands.
“We won’t tolerate this” they say, giving a fine example of tolerant loving behaviour. Which of course is what they hypocritically demand of their students.
But back to the point, which is above and beyond and behind and other than ‘the schools’.
And which is very simple. Indeed. We just have to want to do the ‘right thing’, don’t we?
Simple as that.