Sigh. This pandemic wears on me.
So does my life. I keep thinking about my fav ex and conversations we used to have. Which indicates to me that I need to make some space to have deep connection with my spouse, adult friends, etc. Everything lately has just been parenting, elders, and work. I crave deep connection with real life people.
What I WANT is to go hang out with DH, and then EarthMama and Rose for deep convo. But EarthMama still has no space with her batch of elders. What I might have to consider is hanging out with Daisy and maybe call up Lotus and take them to brunch. Not the deep convo I crave, but a light airing out has merits also.
We had a low key Thanksgiving, where the family did all did prep work together while listening to music and then in the morning I chucked the turkey in at the right time and got it done. That was fun.
And work is better. Eeyore has chilled out. His project is moving along now that I had time to remove obstacles and we had time to bring in new helpers. Really enjoy my co-lead -- he also removed some things off MY plate which I appreciate. Then a big work project went over well so I can kinda rest before the next big one.
But the elders are being super EXTRA lately. Calls and emails and just... annoying. I know they seek connection, but their children cannot be their entire social world. We are busy working, raising children. Plus, my dad is a nasty patient. Not all dementia patients are sweet goofy ones like Flora. Those are easier to deal with.
Youngest DD has been INTENSE lately and kinda wearing me out. I feel bad for her because I want to "finish strong" and sometimes I worry she gets the short of the stick. I'm just so tired of being an active parent. I REALLY want to be at empty nest. I don't want to do this kid stuff any more.
I don't like nagging her on her college apps. She's got a good plan, but it comes with certain steps and applications are part of that.
She wanted to do all these talks with me about sex toys, condoms, female ejaculation... which is fine. But give me a break, kid! Can't you make an appointment? Why do you come at me whenever you see me? Sometimes it's like she's toddler again -- coming at me like separation anxiety hit or she's walked through the desert and I'm the water. Maybe that's how pandemic is affecting her? INTENSE need for connection with me? Her dad had a lot of time off and was totally available while I was wrapping up the work project. Does she go to him? No. She wants ME. Just like when she was toddler, I swear.
Then amid all the other things? GolfBoy asked her out, and she turned him down.
Then he decided to become Creepy Stalker Boy and she had to report him and I had to talk to the school about it. Another
thing for mom to field and worry about. Long story short? He got reprimanded for breaking school code of conduct. Turned out she isn't the only girl he's been bothering either.
And while he shot to the top of her shit list for being so creepy stalker?
The other 3 boys who asked her out this term that she turned down earlier? She still doesn't want to date right now and used to have zero people on her "maybe" list. Well, now she's got spots #1-3 filled in. All Creeper Boy did with his poor behaviors was make her dislike him. And then look at her friends differently. Because THEY don't behave all creepy after she politely turned them down. THEY respect her "no" and that she's not ready to date again yet.
These boys are all her friends. It wasn't like they were trying to be "friends" just to get in her pants. But genuinely friends. So after hearing about Creeper Boy, they just organized it among themselves so someone is always escorting her to class. Creeper Boy is bigger than her, and she never wants to be in a room alone with him. They also told him "That's not cool. Stop." when they were in earshot of the leering catcalls and whatnot. Not ignore poor behavior or laugh, but actually said something to his face.
So good on them. That is what it takes. Not WOMEN complaining, because they have complained for ages. But MEN holding other MEN accountable.
But then I wonder... what's next for Creeper Boy?
It's NORMAL to want friends and start dating as a teen. School doesn't do very good sex ed. Clearly his parents don't give him good sex ed. If this boy doesn't get put on the right path soon? His experience is going to be try X, Y, Z, and get rejected over and over because his approach is too creepy for the girls. Then what? He grows up to be one of those frustrated Creeper MEN?
He needs someone to go "Don't to X. That is not appropriate. Try doing Y instead. And learn to be ok with "no" because not everyone is ready to date when you are. How you take the no? Might get you on the maybe list for later when they ARE ready, so don't blow it by behaving like a creeper."
While I'm glad to see more colleges putting the power and control wheel and healthy dating wheel on their websites? And not just domestic violence websites? How long does it take to get those wheels on the Middle School and High School websites? These kids need data NOW starting when they are like middle school 12-13 so they are prepared for HS dating and college dating.
DD has thanked me over and over in the last few weeks for being sane parent and teaching her what to do BEFORE the creeper boy thing happened and being frank about sex ed. Because then she knew what to do when this unpleasantness was thrust upon her. And boy, was she MAD.
I told her it was not a gold star I wanted to give her. "My first creeper." But she handled it well even if at home she was mad, crying, upset. At school she was all business and reported him. I put a few calls in to expedite things too. I told her to expect the trite "boys will be boys" shit and when it inevitably came up in her interview? She responded "Not an excuse for poor behavior. Not my problem to deal with him. I expect a student separation for my own personal safety."
I started to laugh when she came home and told me that. Not many kids are gonna tell the principal and guidance counselors politely where to stick it.
"It's like everyone thinks I'm this sunshine girl, and they are not used to me being all cold and steely."
She doesn't care what they do about him. She wants her equivalent of a restraining order for HER. And she knows she can call me and I'll go down there. So proud of this girl nipping that shit in the bud and advocating for herself. I heard the other girl might also put in for a student separation now that DD went first.
But doesn't it SUCK that the expectation is that every woman will be harassed sooner or later? All the girls will eventually get the unwanted gold star of "My first creeper." Usually as girls too, not as women. Rather than the expectation being to give young people the tools they need so they can move on to dating and sharing sex well and consensually? And the general expectation of a harassment free society?
Or the expectation is "Girls mature faster. Boys will be boys." Rather than "Boys, look to the girls for leadership and role models. Stop behaving like goobers."
Sometimes I think the girls HAVE to mature faster because both boys AND men are leering, catcalling, and harassing them. They get adult problems thrust upon them sooner.
And that's when I get to missing Max. Not as my exBF, but as my close friend I could have these kinds of conversations with and he'd do the deep listening I need.
His thinks, his mind, that was the big attraction for me back then. Similar, but different than DH thinks.
I also miss DH. He's lost in a bog of his own work. I need to see if we can schedule time away together, just us. I've always wanted Christmas holidays abroad somewhere NOT doing the family thing. But doing the travel thing instead. Not this year. Maybe one day.