Toxic relationship


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My mother forgot my middle son’s birthday. I expected it after she forgot my youngest. Not the first time…it is becoming a pattern. A way to hurt me. To not acknowledge my kids.

Somehow being self sufficient has made me a black sheep. Somehow, not relying on her for things as an adult has made me the bad seed. I don’t need a lot of advice, I am financially secure, I am happy in my marriage.

She needs toxic. She needs drama. She needs chaos.

She hurts me. I try to pretend she doesn’t…but she does.

My kids deserve a grandparent that doesn’t play games. One who celebrates them. One who is interested.

Toxic. She is toxic.




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It is my middle child’s birthday this week. I struggle with this one. Mostly, because of his Reactive Attachment Disorder, and our lack of a good bond. But also because it makes me full of anxiety worrying about how the day will go. Will he be happy because it is his special day? Will his emotions make him tantrum and out of control??

I also mourn his unhappy birth story. Knowing he was born to a drug addicted birthmom, with drugs in bis system requiring time in the NICU. Laws that allowed the addict birthmom to take him home. The neglect he suffered. The hell those situation caused him, and in turn, the way that still impacts our lives as secondary trauma.

I love this kid. I want him to succeed and be happy. I am starting to accept that we will never likely have a true bonded relationship.

I am not failing. She failed before me. I am struggling though.

My husband’s wisdom


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My daughter told me I “baby” my youngest too much.

My husband’s quick reply to her was, “When you worry that someone will take your baby away for 22 mos, then you talk to her about whether or not she babies him.”

My daughter shrugged in agreement. And I was stunned in silence.

It is true…that fear while he was in foster care until legal adoption almost broke me. And I do baby him…he is my sweet sensitive boy, and my last baby.

He put into words why my little guy and I are so attached to each other. And it has been echoing in my head since.

Over celebration


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My kiddo has had 2 “surprise” birthday parties within the last 2 weeks…and his birthday doesn’t come for another 2 weeks.

We, as parents, have been blindsided by surprise treats (one had a personalized sheet cake!) and gifts for his upcoming birthday during bisits with grandparents.

Apparently, they will not be available on the actual birthday, so took it upon themselves to make our family visit into a celebration of his birthday WITHOUT EVEN MENTIONING IT TO US!


Ok, I know, be thankful they remember, right?

I suppose I am.

But, this takes away from the actual event. He has now celebrated his birthday twice, and it isn’t even here yet! Now, whatever we as parents have planned will not be as good…since it the third event! I mean, did I plan on a personalized cake? Honestly, no. But now I better up my game…thanks Grandma.

But, also, this kid has a hard time with attention. As in, he is RAD, and so focusing on him in a surprise twist of the day can be difficult for both him and us.


Please understand birthdays are not about YOU.

Sometimes, you may miss the cake or gift opening. You can come another PRE-ARRANGED day and bring your gift if you want to.

Or, when you will mot be around, send a card in the mail. Kids love mail.

Or call them on their special day. I know phone calls are becoming a thing of the past…but it is still an option.

But please, don’t plan a surprise party on a random day, that happens to be within 4 weeks of the day, without permission. It is their day…not yours. The day isn’t as special when it is celebrated several times over the course of a month.

“I don’t care if I get killed”- 6yo boy


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When my dad was dying, my you gest had a lot of questions about death, God, and heaven. I did my best, trying to answer honestly, along with my beliefs. I found a kids book about heaven, and we read it together. It explained in kids terms, saying it was a fun place (of course).

In the wake of all these school shootings, safety has been a concern, and topic between myself and my husband.

My youngest overheard us talking the other day, and said, “I don’t care if I get killed.”


He followed up with, “Heaven is the best place ever, and I would get to go there and have fun all the time.”

Oh boy.

I am proud in some ways that his faith is strong, even though we don’t attend church much. I do pray with him nightly though.

At the same time, I don’t know if I really want him feeling like life doesn’t matter either. I don’t want him to become a risk taker or something.

This sweet kid.

Old photos bring happiness and sadness


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I have been working on a photo project lately. I need to find 4 old photos and 4 new photos of each of my kids.

One of my kids (my middle child) I don’t have any photos of him as an infant. He joined us when he was a toddler. That pains me, as my other 2 kids have beautiful baby photos for this project.

I love looking at photos of my kids, and remembering them as smaller kids.

But I do not like looking at photos of myself.

Prior to my youngest son joining us, I was in the best shape of my adult life. I was at an ideal weight, and fit. I looked…dare I say it…good.

Then, 2 foster care adoptions worth of stress eating, along with my father’s dragged out death…and I now need to lose nearly 30 pounds.

I am sad.

But, I do love looking at the photos of the kids. I swear I could wallpaper the house with them…

School safety and Mom guilt


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School shootings scare me to my core.

Everyone thinks it won’t happen at their school, in their town.

At this point, school shootings happen almost every day. It is unfathomable. It is so common that we don’t even hear about all of them.

Every day I leave my kids at school, I feel panicky. I feel anxious. I feel scared. I tell them they need to go to school…but do they? At what point does the risk out weigh the benefits? Should I home school?


Forgotten again


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My mother…

She makes me crazy.

I try, I am not sure why. She continues to hurt me again and again.

She once again forgot my youngest kiddos birthday. She will declare she is “the best grandma,” yet she forgets their birthday.

She has forgotten my older son’s birthday too…and I am sure she will this year too.

I didn’t even say anything this time. I don’t want to hear her excuses.

She has never forgotten any other grandkid except my 2 boys.


I have to assume it is because they joined us through adoption, and so somehow they don’t register with her the same. She can deny it…but her actions speak louder than her words.

Similarly, all 3 of my kids get little recognition from another set of grandparents. They at least remember…but a card with a dollar, or a stick of gum (yes…they have been known to put a single stick of gum in the card), isn’t quite what the other grandkids get on their birthdays.

I guess it is just hurtful. I am glad my kids haven’t realized how shitty the situation is yet…but I won’t make excuses when they do.

Sometimes people exhaust me. Truly. I wish I didn’t let them hurt me, but they do.

(Potty) accidents happen


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I peed myself. This post isn’t about one of my kids having an accident. It is about ME, a grown woman, peeing her pants.

I am not talking about the little trickle of pee when you sneeze after birthing children. I am talking about actual wet pants.

So, here is the story:

I am trying to be vigilant about hydration. I had a 12 oz cup of water, along with a cold coffee within the hour. I then decided to take my kids to a park to play.

Yes, I peed prior to leaving. Dang it all.

But, I also brought a bottle of water along for the walk. Most of it I guzzled down at the park.

My youngest had decided to practice riding his bike. He biked to the park without incident, and did an awesome job.

After about 40 min at the park, I was feeling all that liquid intake. I was ready to head home, and so were the kids.

The trip home included an area of down hill biking for my little guy. He is still getting familiar with his bike, and was scared. I explained he would just coast down the hill, and apply brakes to slow down (pedal backward) and stop.

Oh, foolish me.

We start down the hill. I am quickly left behind as my little guy forgets how to brake in his panic of the fast hill.

I find myself running after him to stop him. And, as I run, I feel the pee start to leak. More than a few drops…like, enough pee that it could be noticed.

But, I cannot stop! I must save my screaming child!! Just as I reach him, he brakes! I feel like one of those football players, trying to stop my full sprint momentum but it is too late, and a flag will be thrown. I tried to jump over my son on his bike as he came to a halt in front of my sprinting mom downhill pee run. Instead, we both crashed to the ground.

Thankfully, the only injury was my pride as I realized I had just peed myself.

Thankfully, I had on black pants and a longer shirt. Nobody knew what had happened, except me (and later my husband since I had to tell someone this hilariously embarrassing story).

And now my kid is afraid of his bike, again. And I need to take some core workout classes, cuz clearly I need them.

The end.

Houseguests and playdates


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I don’t like entertaining people. I will never have a home with spaces designed for entertaining guests. I do not like having to remember to offer a drink or a snack and playing hostess. I feel like if I have allowed you in, you should feel comfortable enough to get a drink if you are thirsty. Or, at the very least ask if you want me to get it. But please, don’t sit there wanting something and waiting because I didn’t read your mind and offer.

Here is another dilemma with guests…

What is the polite way to ask them to leave?

This is awkward. I don’t enjoy guests very much mostly because of this.

If I schedule a playdate for 1pm and say “after lunch” that means I won’t be making lunch for everyone. I will expect to provide just a snack. I would also expect that unless prior arrangements werr made, you would take your child home before supper time. Because a few hours can feel like days…and I certainly do not plan a playdate to purposefully last 7 hours. I don’t want to scramble to make food for extra people because 4 hrs into the playdate, I am STILL entertaining.

Which brings me back to this:

How do you ask people to leave??!!

Guests…I have kids. Kids need to be in bed on time if I want the next day to be a good one. This is even more important on a school night.

Please, if it is getting late, go home! If I begin having kids change into pj’s, you need to take the hint and go home.

Friends, I try to be friendly, and understand. However, I just cannot. If I am dropping hints left and right that you need to get moving, and you aren’t picking up on them, I am at a loss.

My anxiety will not allow me to say, “For fucks sake man, it is time for you to go!” even though I am screaming it in my mind.

Instead, I smile and pretend I am ok.

Socializing is exhausting for me. It hasn’t always been this way. But, things change…and this is how it is now.

Anxiety means I crave interaction and friends. It also means this exhausts me and I regret the plans when it is time.

I also hate entertaining because my home is…mine.

For many years we did foster care. It is truly like living in a glass house. You are judged constantly, and have no choice but to allow people into your home.

Now that I am done with that part of my life, I really want my space to be…mine. Allowing people in is hard for me.

I also do not trust people with my kids. This means most of the time my kids want to play with friends I try to arrange a meeting place. A park in nice weather, or an indoor playland. It also means sometimes I schedule playdates at my house. Sigh. My anxiety will not allow me to leave my kids at your house. And, I won’t invite myself to stay…so my house it is.

So, with all of this said, how do you politely ask someone to leave??!!