Saturday, May 05, 2007

I was going to finally get on here and update y'all about an interesting development/opportunity that came my way this week. I will have to do that another time.

Instead, I have questions and sadness today. We received a surprising email that a dear friend of ours with whom my husband grew up had a tragedy in his family. His younger sister committed suicide, leaving only a brief note that she was tired of it all for her boyfriend to find. She leaves behind two small children who thankfully I guess were not there but were told after school that day.

Aside from just being so shocked and sad that this happened, it is very hard to comprehend how some who was still fairly young (early 30s at the most) with two children, would take such a drastic turn as to take her own life. We do not know a lot of details. We do know that this girl had a lifetime of problems. She was a pessimistic kind of person who had several chronic health problems from childhood. But, in addition to that, she was the type of person who always had some sort of complaint to file. She was always depressed and unhappy in her life for as long as I knew her, but in the last several years she had given up custody of her kids and was with a lot of the wrong kind of people. But, her negativity and tendency to make bad choices were just something that her family had grown accustomed to over the years. That was just her. Right? Or was it a lifelong cry out for help?

And, so, to some the ending of her life may not seem that surprising. But, to me it was. And, it has me thinking now. I have several close people in my life who have lived a life looking at things very pessimistically and negatively. My own mother is probably the worst case, and I get to where I don't want to be around her when she gets like that. Someone is always out to get her or one of her kids, the worst is guaranteed to happen, and people are disappointing most often to her. And, it drives me crazy at times, even though I recognize that I, myself, take turns of that in my own life.

But, I have never once thought that I'd have to worry about her ending her life because of it. I wrote it off as just her being a negative person and looked the other way. My sister who was always an optimistic like our father is now repeating in these behaviors and called me very depressed today about her life.

Why this all strikes even more close to home for me is because I am watching my son follow in those footsteps. I realize now that I must stop his fatalistic attitude. I know that some of it is his age, but some is obviously either something I have taught him, or something inherent in his genes that gives him this tendency.

We're currently trying our first round with him with flag football. It is not going well. He is learning and practicing with his Dad and loves the sport. And he is actually pretty good. But, for the first time in our experience with the YMCA, we have a coach that is not following their rules of fair play. He is playing only the kids he knows and the kids he thinks will win (including his own son). And, while my son is lucky enough to be getting playing time (4 kids are barely setting foot in the games), not one play has been run that would give him the opportunity to throw, catch or run with the ball. This is the first sport we have played where that is possible really. Even in baseball, you get to bat.

Instead of seeing the unfairness in this, and being mad at the coach, my son walked off the field and announced today that he played bad. He had not played badly at all, making sure he was in the right place to receive passes and being open for that and waving his arms to get noticed, but the boys did not throw it to him. He is not in the inner circle. And the coach also was always there to scream at the quarterback to throw it to one of the inner circle players too.

At almost 8 years old, he cannot see what is going on. So, he blames himself. He is bad at football now. And, this reaction is not unlike him. All year long, he has brought home report cards with either good to great marks, and then thought he was doing badly in school. He expects perfection, much as I have always done to myself. And, he is often unhappy because of it. He gets off the school bus sad many days out of the week, because someone didn't talk to him or someone said something rude. He sees the worst thing that happens during his day instead of the 10 other great things that did. And, it is really hard for me to watch.

How do you change a child from this behavior? I have tried not being negative myself around him, but that doesn't help. Now that I have seen that this way of thinking can completely destroy a person's life, as well as possibly their children's futures, I am determined to get him on a more positive path. I will not let him grow up feeling like his life is so hopeless that he can't go on. No matter what it takes, I must change his negative thinking and help him get on the road to more healthy thinking now.

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3 Comments:

Blogger LadyBugCrossing said...

Get your hiney into the pediatrician's office and request therapy with a pediatric psychiatrist. Don't let the pediatrician tell you that he doesn't need it. You are the mom. YOU know best.
xo
LBC

7:16 AM, May 06, 2007  
Blogger Crazy MomCat said...

Thank you LBC. You are always such a great commentor when I need advice. You're a peach!

3:25 PM, May 06, 2007  
Blogger Babs said...

Funny, I had the same kinda thought as LBC above... I really believe in therapy, and wonder if the girl who committed suicide had ever gotten any. I feel sad that she had to resort to that... but really, I wouldn't say that anyone else is to blame, you know? It's just a sad situation.

btw, does being a perfectionist have anything to do with birth order? I'm wondering if that's some of what's coming out in your son. The other thing is, nothing says he has to be an uber-athlete... or even do team sports.

I think you're a great mom. :)

5:40 PM, May 06, 2007  

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