Single Parenting in Times of Crisis

My son has been having one life crisis after another.  Last week’s was the most serious.  I won’t get into any details in order to protect his privacy, but I will say that there have been multiple therapists, counselors, doctors, psychiatrists involved, as well as an emergency room visit.  All this has taken quite a toll on myself and my family.  

As for me, besides the stress of dealing with his issues, I still have to work and I have no time off left for the rest of the year.  Almost all of it was used dealing with issues with my son.  I can’t afford to take FMLA because, unlike in every other modern, industrialized country in the world, I don’t get paid for FMLA type time off.  No one does.  All of these visits with therapists, counselors, doctors, and psychiatrists involve appointments, usually for at least an hour.  An hour appointment off work for me means at least two to three hours, depending on travel time to and from.  Add to this a couple of court dates which require half to whole days, and things are extremely difficult and stressful for me.

The one very huge silver lining in all this is Lorraine.  Not only does she support me by just being there for me; giving me a shoulder to lean/cry on; an ear to listen; and a refuge from the world, but she also has made herself available to watch my son, who can’t be left alone at all for now.  If it wasn’t for her, my son would be in an inpatient program because I’d have no way to watch him while I’m working.  

My son’s mother is absolutely no help at all.  She says that she can’t take time off work (as if I can).  Her husband works evenings, as far as I know.  She also works some evenings as well so you would think that between the two of them they could take him for most of the day during the 5 day work week.  As I tole his therapist, his mother makes no effort to help with her son, or even spend time with him.  The only time she does is when I mention to her that she and our daughter spend a lot of time together and they go to lunch and dinner a lot without our son.  Then she will take him for a few hours.  She also buys our daughter things all the time while our son gets nothing from her.  

I can deal with this because I know she’s a lying narcissist who doesn’t want, or can’t, deal with the issue our son has.  What gets me absolutely livid is the effect this has on our son. After every time he sees her, or his sister and her go out without him, he becomes depressed and angry and that’s when the outbursts happen.  Granted, this is just a part of his stress, but even though he doesn’t say so, it is obvious to me that he is terrible hurt and feels abandoned by his mother.  Given that he had a bad relationship with my second wife, he really hasn’t had a good relationship with an adult female since he was little. I don’t expect Lorraine to fill this role.  It may be that she eventually does, but right now my son is too hurt and angry to let his guard down.  He has, however, requested a lot of hugs from Lorraine and he obviously likes her a lot, so that has to be helping a little.  

For Lorraine’s part, she’s more than willing to help however she can.  Given that she has a son who has very similar development and behavioral issues as mine, she has a real understanding of my son and how to deal with him, unlike my last wife or even his own mother.  But, I refuse to make her responsible for my son.  It isn’t her job.  I gratefully accept any help she offers because my son responds well to her and because it is either that or put him somewhere in an inpatient program.

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3 Responses to “Single Parenting in Times of Crisis”


  1. 1 Denise June 15, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    *hug*

    On a side note…Vermont DOES pay for FML. *nod*

    *hug*

  2. 2 Brick Window June 15, 2011 at 5:55 pm

    Jay, I have been off in my own world, trying to get so much crap done. I am so glad you posted this on FB, so I could see it. I am so behind on my Google Reader (that you helped me with) that I am afraid to open it!

    I am so upset over what you are going through with your son. I wish I could help in some way. I hope you can take a little solace knowing that I care and you are in my thoughts even when I am away from our little blog world.

    I will get back very soon to posting and reading. In the meantime, it sounds like you have something special with Lorraine. I know you will be good to her and she will be for you.

    Thinking of you.


  1. 1 Narcissism in Action « Relationships, Love, and Sex. Trackback on August 16, 2011 at 12:32 am

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