My Tragic Son
Wednesday, June 06, 2012
One often hears that the Queen was not a great mother, but I don't know if such hearsay is to be believed. She did have a lot of responsibility. And it's difficult to evaluate the job you are doing--whether you have a small child or a middle-aged balding man.
My younger son is very dependent. He gives us everything he writes to proofread and speaks of his woes tragically and poignantly. In his quest for happiness, nothing has really worked for him. I wonder if I was too indulgent or not indulgent enough. Did I pass on genes of anxiety and neurosis along with the bad family cardiac history?
He has a baby (almost 6 months old) and while I think that the baby has helped to make him happy in many ways, in other ways the responsibility has been a bit crushing. More than a bit crushing. The baby's mother seems a bit checked out of reality. She wants to be a professor and spends all of her time preparing to be a professor. But I honestly do not believe that she can get a job unless she manages to improve her English skills.
It's a mess! Everytime I try to detach and leave them be, I get drawn back in. I have to remind myself:
1) Trying to enable people, trying to "help" them is always something where I have trouble drawing boundaries.
2) When I work too hard on helping other people, I can see and feel a negative impact on my own body.
3) I seem to have enabled my son to live a life of "learned helplessness" and I don't know how to pull out.
4) I need to think seriously about detaching. I still feel his pain and his anguish as if he were a little schoolkid and not as if he IS--a middle-aged, bald man.
5) I love him. I don't know how to love him.