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6/9/11 1:12 P

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Hi! I am kind of new to this particular board and I hope any words I offer you are understood as they are intended, just as plain advice that you can take with a grain of salt if you want to. I am a divorced mother of three kids. My oldest is 14. I also am a child of divorce. My mother had married and divorced three times by the time I was 14 years old. And as I read your post I think I had a tendancy to read what you were saying from the perspective of a child of divorce. Is it possible that when you told him no, he could not have the same spritzer as you he felt like you were rejecting him? I realize it is just salad dressing, but sometimes objects or things no matter what it is can mean a great deal to a child. My mother no longer speaks to me, it has been a year since we have talked. It was simple issues that put a wedge in our relationship. I really dont think he was upset over the salad dressing, I think there are much deeper issues here. You may want to as him to talk to you when the two of you are in a good mood, and then be prepared to hear what he has to say without feeling attacked. I have already had to do this with my 14 year old. It doesnt always feel that good to hear what a child who is in pain has to say. And they arent always skilled at saying how they feel. But usually if you hear what they are saying and then tell them you understand they are hurting, and that you love them, then they feel cared for and safe. I wish you luck in your weight loss journey. I ope things work out at home and that you have a bright and wonderful future ahead of you!

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6/1/11 11:38 A

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Sorry you going though a rough patch with your teenager. I understand that as single parents, we tend to always to be the bad guy and many times, the absent parent always come out smelling like a rose. I also understand that we all have different parenting styles. But let me just say that I am absolutely appalled at the things that your son had to say to you. I think it was absolutely inexcusable, no matter what you said to him. You are his parent, he is not yours and YOU make the rules in that house. NOT HIM. I understand that corporal punishment is not an accepted method of punishment, anymore, and at 18, he's probably too big.

However, he is 18 and even though that's technically still a teenager, he is an ADULT! No matter how bad of a parent he thinks you have been or you actually were, it is no longer mandatory for you to be a full-time parent to him nor provide for him like he is a child. He is an adult! You no longer have to feel guilty for wanting to have anything for yourself; no matter what it is!! YOU HAVE DONE YOUR JOB!! If he wants a particular dressing, he can buy his own. And if he doesn't have money, at 18, it is time for him to begin to make his own way.
You have taken care of him by yourself for 18 years, and although it shouldn't be mandatory for him to now take care of you, it should be mandatory for him to be making an attempt to take care of himself!

To answer your question, you are allowed to have whatever you want in that house. It is your world, you allow your children to live there because you love them and you want what's best for them. But please understand. You did the best you could with what you had just like the rest of us and if that is not good enough, then at 18, that's HIS problem, not yours.

You cannot live your life for your children the rest of your life and you don't have to. At 18, your job description changes; your are no longer a caretaker, but an advisor. My daughter will be 18 next month, and many times she has dinner ready when I get home from work. And some days if she doesn't, then she is S.O.L. I work hard, have never received a child support check and I have never been away from her for more than three days in a row until she went to camp last year. I am not being ugly, but as far as I'm concerned, I don't owe her anything because she already got it all and has been getting it all her life.

Do not let guilt overshadow what you have done for your children. We all have made some mistakes, but at least you were and are there; which is more than many children can say about their own parents. Live your life and tell your 18 year-old son to go get one. You are NOT his tragedy.

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5/31/11 3:25 P

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If you're the only parent around, you're going to catch it. Your son criticizing you for marrying such a "loser" rang a bell. My son is 10 and sometimes shakes his head and asks why I married his father (he sees his father ALL the time and totally gets why I divorced him). Even as he's acknowledging his father is an idiot, he's blaming me for it! You can't win and that's what you have to bear in mind. You don't need to win. I'm sure you've been a respectable parent. You are obviously there for your children and have kept your priorities straight and have done right by them. Guess what - you WON. We need to keep it all in perspective for ourselves and for them. He shouldn't talk that way to you.

I often remind my son that he's got it good and is doing just fine. He's asking me now when I'm going to start dating ("Can't you get on one of those dating websites?," he asks.) much to my surprise. He said if I decide to get married again, please, to make sure the, "guy's not a d*ck this time." Nice...

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5/24/11 1:47 A

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I'm sorry you're having to deal with that. At 18, your son should know better and it sounds more like he was throwing a temper tantrum of some sort. I understand how it is not to be able to really have anything of your own. At 8, my daughter is the same way. Even when you buy things specifically for them, they want what you have.

Now, my daughter is still going through the stage where she's realizing how incinsistent and unreliable her father is. She blames him for everything. But I'm preparing for that moment when things change. I'm sure he has anger towards him which he directs at you. You're the only parent.

Despite that, you do need to let him know speaking to you that way is totally unacceptable. He's 18 now. He has a job. He technically doesn't have to be there and deal with it if he thinks it's so bad. That may be a wake up call for him.

I hope it gets better. Good luck!

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5/23/11 3:06 P

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So, I get back home today and I'm having a fairly productive day, and Colby, my 18yr old is home... So, we're talking in the kitchen about a dream he just had... He had gotten in from work an hour earlier.. 6am-11am so he had taken a little nap... So, everything's going well... I'm making myself mini chicken caesar wraps and everything's fine... Then he says, wow, those look great... I'm gonna make myself some... So he opens the refrigerator and starts taking things out... The only thing I say is, "Sure, but can you use one of the other salad dressings rather than my spritzer in yours?" He says, "No, I want to use the spritzer." I say, "Colby, there are 5 other salad dressings in the refrigerator... one of them being creamy caesar, which is the same as the spritzer I'm using... please use one of the other ones... " He says, "No, I want to use it... why do you have to be such a *B*?" And at that point, I lost it... The argument was fast and ugly... done in less than 5 minutes but we both said things we can't take back... He could have used any of the other dressings... We make caesar wraps often in the house and have always used the creamy caesar... Am I really not allowed to have anything? I have such a small budget... I could understand if I didn't have any other dressings in the house, but 5 other options... I'm mentally drained and can't think and just so tired... Do any of you go through this... I feel like I'm not allowed to say no to anything sometimes... I live my life spiraling between guilt stemming from not being able to give them enough and chaos trying to keep them in line... One of the things he said was, "You're not a good mother... You obviously shouldn't have had kids... look at the loser you chose to be our father... " It didn't hurt me as much as infuriate me... I give up everything for them... I have nothing... while their dad does nothing... and this is the thanks I get... I'm a horrible mother... I don't want a plaque or an award or any type of commendation... but the tiniest bit of respect... I don't merit that?...

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