Thursday, August 18, 2005

A Mothers Story

Let me tell you all a story. It is a true story. It is about my ex-wife and one very big reason why she's my ex-wife. It has a point so don't go away.

When I met my ex-wife she was already married to another man. She had one child, a cherubic red haired boy, 3 years old. Her husband was abusive. He would beat her physically and verbally assault her. After 7 years of this abuse, she left him and brought her son with her.

At this time the most important person in her life was her son. She loved him more than life. She would do, and did everything for him. Because she loved him so much, she allowed him to behave anyway he wanted to. In other words, she spoiled him.

There are some who would say this isn't really love, and I would tend to agree, but I don't know what else you could call it.

Her and I dated and after a time we were married. She insisted that I adopt her son. I didn't really want to, I felt that adoption wasn't really needed, but I acquiesced.
So then, he was my son, too. Later we had a son of our own. So now, she had 2 children to spoil and she did.

This was the reason we began to have problems. I believe in discipline. She didn't. The focus of our differences was her natural son, my adopted son. I guess she felt that since I wasn't his birth father, I had no right to discipline him, because when he disobeyed, I would attempt to mete out discipline, and she would defend him. In front of him. I was between a rock and a hard place. If I disciplined him she would fight me and cause discord. If I didn't, he would continue to act up and that would cause discord.

As is often the case with undisciplined kids, he became increasingly hard to control, and got involved with some very bad people. He got arrested the first time when he was 12, and spent a year in a juvenile detention center.

But my wife loved him, and we drove 100 miles every weekend to spend the day with him. When he got out he went right back to his friends and right back into trouble. This time, I told him that if he got put into jail again, I would not waste my time visiting him.

And I didn't.

After a couple of arrests more, he was placed into a group home for juvenile offenders. My wife visited him reguarly. One day he escaped custody. And she helped him. She helped him hide from the police for a year afterwards. I was not "allowed" to interfere at all, anymore. She believed that somehow, I was the reason for all the trouble he was in.

To make a long story a trifle shorter, we ended up divorcing, mainly for this reason.
What little discipline he still had left when I did. After I left, in a PCP induced rage, he attempted to rape and murder his mother.

He was 17 at this time.

That changed her attitude about him immediately. She had him arrested and, while he was still in jail, she moved away, leaving no forwarding address.

To this day he doesn't know where she is. And she doesn't want him to know. And she doesn't know where he is. And she no longer cares about him.

For some reason, she apparently no longer cares about her younger son either, although he is not, nor has he ever been a behavior problem. She sent him to live with me.

Now. The point I am making is this:

Sometimes a mothers love can become something else.

I am sick of hearing about Cindy Sheehan and her crusade in the name of her son. I believe she is either exploiting the death of her own son or allowing herself and his memory to be used to further an anti-Bush agenda.

I am sick of those who say that she is a grieving mother. I don't believe she is honoring the memory of her son. I wonder about her sincerity. I wonder if she really loved her son. Maybe, as in my ex-wife's case, she did once.

But remember, It has been proven that she has always been a vocal anti-war advocate. Perhaps the son that she once loved, alienated her from himself when he decided to join the armed service. Maybe, just maybe, she is so angry at the Bush administration that her anger carried over into hatred for her son and for what he believed and died for. Perhaps she is angry at her son for "joining" what she considered her enemies.

Perhaps she is an unwitting pawn in the extreme leftist groups agenda. But in my opinion, she is dishonoring her son and his memory. And I don't see that as an act of a loving mother. And, as i said, sometimes love gets replaced by other things.

In any case, I am sick of hearing about her and her crusade. And I believe most of America is too. We were all sympathetic to her at first. But now, I think most of the people want her and her group to just go away. The left wing arm of the media (not ALL media) who uses these stories to further their own agenda has done the usual stellar job of buiding a mountain from a molehill and, instead of creating more sympathy, it has created apathy.

I could be all wrong, of course, and if I am, I would be the first to apologize.

But I could be dead on.

UPDATE: I made this post before I listened to any talk shows on radio, as I have stated previously that I make it a point to do. After posting this, I had the chance to hear Dan Patrick's take on this subject, wherein he pointed out that Ms. Sheehan might not have always had her current opinion on the war and Bush. He says she was traumatized by her son's death and the sorrow has crept in and tramsformed her opinion. Which more or less agrees with my observation. Trauma undoubtably had a devastating impact on both her and my ex-wife, and very well could have changed them. However, Cindy Sheehan has said herself that she and her family was opposed to war before her son enlisted, so Dan may be mistaken. I don't know.

That said, although it is a valid reason for why they both may have changed their minds, the main point of my post remains the same. It matters not why they changed, only that they have chosen these methods to cope.


Anonymous said...
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Mark said...

Bookmark this, Anonymous! Danged spammers. grrrr

Erudite Redneck said...

Just one thing: You reduce your own arguments every time you lambast the media for doing what the media does. The media is in the business of reporting stuff, not ignoring it.

I agree with you, otherwise.


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dutchie said...

Living in the Netherlands i see Cindy come by on the news but not as boringly often as over at your place so i can't really comment on your story. I did feel the shivers tho about your sons. From an outside point of view i find it terrible news to hear a 17 yr old boy is so alone. Having said that, i would probably have been on your side about discipline.
Oh i don't know. I think she may have been overcautious because (too much) discipline can lead the wrong way too.
Am I still making any sense here?
I wish you and your son(s) all the best.

Poison Pero said...

To an extent you are right, Press......The media's job is to reoprt news.

Do you deny they often create or prop up their idea of what is news though?

They get to decide what they find to be newsworthy, and what they don't --> Which means they make the news.

Erudite Redneck said...

This is correct: "They get to decide what they find to be newsworthy, and what they don't."

What's yer point? That is exactly what editors, such as myself, and TV producers, whom I loathe, do.

We are the gatekeepers. Yes. Otherwise, there is NO context. Like it or hate it, you have to have gatekeepers. Myself, I spend as much time keeping what I consider bullshit out of the paper as allowing what I consider legitimate "news" in. (I do not deal with politics, so relax.)

But, yes, that IS the job of an editor.

The only answer if you don't like what you see on TV is change the channel, or if you don't like what you read in the papers, is to read other papers. Although I really don't recommend that: You wind up in a bubble of your own reality that way. Better to know where "the other side" is coming from.

Another answer is to start your own paper, which the Washington Times did, or your own cable TV outfit, which Fox did. Or staqrt a blog, which, I guess, millions have.

Myself, I will keep exercising my own judgment in decidign what is and what is not newsworthy because that is what my employer pays me to do.

To complain that I do so is like complaining that a bus driver turns the steering wheel.

I decide what news is because I decided 20-something years ago that that's what I wanted to do as a career. Others chose differently. But you don't see me bitching at a business owner for, oh, what, ordering inventory!


Mark said...

OK, ER, I changed the wording of it for you. But you should know by now, that I don't mean the entire media when i use generalizations for the sake of brevity. The term "left wing arm of the media" should usually be inferred from my posts whenever I speak of the media in general. You know what I mean. Don't take it so personally.

grody jo-dee said...

as i meet and know more moms, i really believe there can be a link between former abuse and lack of discipline with their children. i know about 6 women who were physically abused in some way, and all of them have out-of-control children. i think they make a connection between what happened to them and what they do when they discipline.

it's a sad thing, because i believe that discipline is an integral part of being a parent. when you love someone, you correct them. although methods vary widely, there has to be SOME form of discipline. there's nothing sadder or more unpleasant than being around perpetually spoiled kids (except maybe being married to the spoiler, as you were).

Erudite Redneck said...

I don't take it personally -- and this is yer place. I would never suggest you cater to my concerns.

It's not personal. It's more important than that. The press has always been rated a little lower than lawyers in this country, but the media bashing going on now is a danger to the republic. Kill all the lawyers tomorrow, and we might be better off. Kill all the journalists and see what happens. It would be survival of the rhetorically fittest. It would not be a pretty sight.

Porkopolis said...

Another mother's story offered for contrast.

Lores Rizkalla said...

interesting this concept of "newsworthy", all the parents who support the war effort who have lost sons in Iraq are NOT newsworthy?

i understand there will be a gathering of Bush supporters at crawford this weekend. i'm curious how much and what kind of coverage they get.

Erudite Redneck said...

Lores uh ... whatever:

If yer talking about what you see on TV, I wouldn't hazard a guess, and I don't care. Anyone who relies on TV -- hell, on anything besides three or four newspapers -- deserves to be misled and ignorant.

Mary said...

Obviously, your ex-wife needed a MAJOR slap in the face before she woke up to the fact that spoiling her son prevented him from growing into a responsible adult.

She had ample opportunities to realize that her parenting skills weren't effective and she needed to change. Instead, choosing to become a partner in her son's crime when he needed a parent was about the worst thing she could have done.

It's such a sad story, Mark. I'm so sorry you lived through all that trauma. I hope your ex and both your sons are doing well. Your younger son is lucky to have you.

Maybe one day, your ex will get a knock on the door or a phone call from her son and she'll find that he straightened out his life and wants to reconcile. Maybe she could forgive him and he could forgive her. That, of course, probably will never happen.

Unfortunately, life isn't fair and it isn't easy. That's been my experience anyway.

Sheehan's trauma may be the reason she's acting the way she is; but it's not an excuse.

Living through some sort of hell doesn't give anyone a pass to be considered unaccountable for their own behavior.

Allowing her grief to be turned into a reality TV show was not a good idea. I wish she had more respect for his memory and for herself.

I sincerely think she is mentally unstable. My sympathy for Sheehan has turned into pity.

Poison Pero said...

Did I hit a nerve, or what, Press?

All I was saying is there is an infinite amount of NEWS.........You just get to pick what you want us to see. And what you don't want us to see.

Congratulations......Because it's a powerfull tool you get to wield.
Here's a point of reference (not even a political one).

Drew Rosenhouse: Everyone hates the guy, because he holds his players out, and he's a rich, slick-haired SOB....Blah, blah, blah. --> This is in the papers and TV constantly.

Drew Rosenhouse: Recently saved a kids life, who was drowning in a pool......There were tens of people standing around the kid, but Rosenhouse had the stones to do CPR and to do it well enough to save the kid. --> This has never been big news

And I really could care less about the guy........It's just a referrence.
The media is sensational, and gets to paint its own pictures.

I'm sure you are a great editor.......I have no doubt you do a great job.

So was Joseph Goebbels, though.

Erudite Redneck said...

Reo, I don't know who Drew Rosenwhatsis is.

For this -- "So was Joseph Goebbels, though" -- go to hell, you chickenshit bastard.

Mark, I don't deserve that kind of crap, that IS personal, and Pero is a sorry example, -- wait, a great example of worst of the right wing's rightiest wing.

Time ofr me to say so long again for awhile.

Poison Pero said...

Sorry if I pissed off Press, Mark.....A little anyway.

Seems to me he became unhinged from the beginning on this comment box........Not just my last comment.

Oh well, I guess I'm just the "worst of the right wing's rightiest wing"

It's all fun and games till someone puts an eye out. Ya know?

Mike's America said...

Press: Yes, now we can change the channel... and the left has been attacking Fox News and Rush Limbaugh ever since.

Bernie Goldbergs written a couple of good books on the subject of media bias. No doubt you've already seen them.

Here's a brief synopsis by Goldberg at Opinion Journal:

tugboatcapn said...

ER, Pero did kinda have a point. The ability to decide what gets reported and what does no is a very powerful tool. I am not saying that you personally would use this tool to promote your own agenda, but you have to admit that there are some in your business who would. Nothing personal, it's just the nature of the business.

Mark, this is a heartbreaking story. My prayers as well as the wife's are with you and both of your sons.

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Rainbow Vacuum Parts said...
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Mark said...

Note: I don't censor my comments. The deleted comments on here were all blogspammers. I DO delete them. I hate spammers.

Erudite Redneck said...

For what it's worth, I have apologized to Pero, via e-mail, and I apologize to y'all, too. The Goebbels remarked pushed me over the edge. I shoulda hung on, but I failed.

One point: Even those in the media who push their own agenda are doing nothing wrong if that's what their employers are paying them to do. I think attacking the job they do, if you disagree with it, is fine. I think attacking "the media" is just short-sighted and lame. The issues are much more complicated than people realize, and all the name-calling and blanket condemnation of the institution itself does no good. There are plenty of fights out there, mediawise. People are too indiscriminate with blanket condemnations. Y'all should pick yer fights better. But hey, that's just what I think.


BRUISER said...

This post has been removed by the non-freedom loving chicken hawk blog administrator. That fat fuck.

Anonymous said...

Jesus loves you, Bruiser!

Mark said...

Bruiser says:
"This post has been removed by the non-freedom loving chicken hawk blog administrator. That fat fuck."

Bruiser, I already said the deleted comments are from blogspammers. The fact that your asinine comment is still present on this site proves that I don't censor, but if I did, yours would be deleted based on pure stupidity.

Anonymous said...

Service men and women are dying everday in Iraq. The Bush administration sent them to die based on a lie. There were no WMD. Iraq was never an imminent threat to the US. Iraq had nothing to do with September 11. The War on Terror is a failure and yet Americans continue to die and we at home are no safer.