Tag Archives: mental illness

That’s Not OK

Tonight I said a goodnight prayer for my 2 year-old daughter. Just a thank you for the day prayer and I hope she has sweet dreams. We are an inter-faith family and don’t always pray but I did it tonight. I ended it with “I hope she has good dreams. Amen.”

Right after I finished she said, “And the man doesn’t pull my hair.”

I locked eyes with her huge eyes that were serious and furrowed. I hesitated.

I wish I was better at knowing what to say, was what immediately came to my mind.

Last week my nanny was leaving a restaurant with my youngest, holding her hand, they were with another nanny and the child she cares for. Suddenly my nanny was no longer holding my daughter’s hand.

She looked back and a strange man had my daughter by the hair.

Immediately the other nanny said, “What the fuck are you doing?” I like that nanny.

My nanny doesn’t swear and is sweet but strong and was confused. He let go of my daughter’s hair and then the woman next to him said, “He doesn’t know what he’s doing.”

I should insert here that I was chaperoning my oldest child’s field trip so you aren’t thinking, see that LA mom should have been with her child, even if I was getting my legs waxed it doesn’t matter but I feel compelled to interject that.

Anyways, another person jumped up and started apologizing and saying he was the supervisor to the two people.

It turned out they are mentally challenged.

When I heard that my heart went out to the man who pulled my daughter’s hair. My heart went out to his parents even more.

When I saw my daughter after I got back from the field trip she looked at me shyly and started to cry. I didn’t want make a huge ordeal over it so I asked her if someone pulled her hair and said no one will do that again and that her body is her body.

That was it, she got over it quickly. She also cried when she saw my husband.

The case worker called us that evening and informed us it was a second time that the man had grabbed someone inappropriately and she was very sorry and he would not be allowed to go out on those group outings again.

My husband and I felt bad.

And also of course, glad that he’s getting the care he needs. Well, I hope he is.

Tonight when my 2 year-old said that right after I prayed I was surprised.

I again, didn’t know what to say and didn’t want to say too much.

She asked, “What’s that guys name?”

I don’t know I answered.

She then said, very slowly, while waving her little finger in front of her, “That’s not OK.”

Not it’s not, I replied.

Her brothers had entered the room by then and my oldest started to smile a little bit at her cuteness and my 4 year-old boy said if someone did that to me I’d fight them. No, you scream and run to an adult you trust I countered.

Then I ushered them out and said tell her goodnight boys.

My 4 year-old ran over to the crib and I thought he would kiss her sweetly but instead he bent his arm in front of his mouth and said “Hey, smell this,” upon which he made a farting sound and ran out innocently laughing. The conversation forgotten.

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I’m not sure why I’m sharing or what my point is just a strange occurrence for us.

Notes From a “Good Girl”

A post by Co-Creator/Producer/Director Lindsay.

Tonight as I slowly followed my 2 year-old, wearing only a diaper daughter outside, I told her it was not time to play, it was time to come inside.

No, she told me.

Her eyes, narrowed and sparkled, followed by a smile.

Good, I thought, tell me no.

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My daughter being captured by her matriarchs.

She then careened down the driveway pushing a toy fast with a little rebel yell.

Right after that I made the kids come inside knowing that I don’t want to raise a child who doesn’t listen. But when I think of some of my friends who didn’t listen, if I am really, really honest with you, they had a lot more fun then me.

And, I must also admit, they have turned into pretty well adjusted adults.

I was a “good girl.”

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Me and a cousin on a boat in the midwest.

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I was very mature. I listened and obeyed. I never questioned. Never. Not even in college.

It actually wasn’t until meeting my husband that I began to question authority and what someone was spitting out at me something they titled, a fact. My husband is Jewish and was brought up in a family where it was OK to argue his point. It wasn’t really arguing, ironically. It was discussing ideas.

I was brought up to sit up straight at the table and not talk with your mouth full.

There was never debate.

But there were arguments.

I have only met a few souls who I have deemed truly untamable. I remember watching them, enviously, when I was a teenager, interacting with their parents. The playful way in which they would interact. I think possibly, their parents didn’t think what they were doing was perhaps bad and again these are people who are now great adults.

I was told over and over again at how “good” I was by adults.

But the problem I’m finding is that I’m feeling, too often, bad.

I cry to my husband, I don’t know who I am.

It’s OK, he gently tells me, you can figure it out, I’ll love you who ever that is.

I want to rebel, only I’m not too old, but I have lots of little lives that depend on me. My rebellion is coming in small, possibly ridiculous to you ways. For example, I don’t care if my kids say fart.

My husband was brought up in a family where curse words held little power. My 71 year-old mother in law tosses around the f word as if were no big deal.

Why should I care if my kids giggle hilariously over talking about poop? What the hell do I care about that?

I care far greater over the way my son treats other children. And by the way, when my 3 year-old started saying “Fuck it poopy man” I’m pretty sure he learned that from me and not Diego.

I wish I hadn’t spent so much time trying to be good.

I wish I had stayed out later.

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Me, 10 years ago.

I talked to another woman recently who was a “good girl” just like me.

Under a beautiful setting LA sun we realized we came from similar upbringings.

We were the girls trying so hard to be good because other things were happening that were, well, bad.

Sometimes I find myself, relentlessly, riding my oldest son, who reminds me a lot of myself at that age. Wanting him to mind his table manners. I find myself confused by his abrasive ways of stating his opinions, clashing with my upbringing.

More then being good, I want my son to be happy. More then being good, I want him to care deeply about others.

I cringed lately when my husband said, “I had been so good about working out,” recently. Don’t call me good, I spat in my head.

About a year ago, we were at my son’s graduation from a class. A balloon maker was there.

As the children kept jumping up and down the balloon maker kept saying, “Please, sit down, be good like that little boy,” and he pointed to my son.

Yet, he kept giving the balloons to the other children who made more noise or refused to sit.

After 10 minutes I wanted to scream at him, give my child a fucking balloon!

Finally, he gave my child a balloon.

I hissed to my husband, “What is the point of being good?”

Perhaps this is deeply cynical and unapologetically tidy.

But like I said, I’m going through a rebellious streak.

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