letting each other go

Archive for February 28th, 2007


Posted by Leo G on February 28, 2007


My father-in-law died tonight. This is a photo of him in Korea in 1952. Rest in peace, friend.


Posted in Downs | 19 Comments »

First Therapy

Posted by Leo G on February 28, 2007

Well, the therapist is down-to-earth, caring, and very blunt. I think all that’s a good thing. My son seemed pretty open to the whole thing. Coming on the heels of being suspended for fighting may have been an advantage. I know he knows why we’re worried. I know he knows we love him. I know he knows we are trying to get him quality help.

At the same time, the therapist is clearly not going to just be a tool for us parents. He told us all that he really doesn’t like adults, he much prefers teens and children. He was clear about what he would have to share with us and what he would not. One part of that was to trust him to let us know if he begins to think the drug abuse is enough of a problem to warrant treatment. From my perspective, that is a relief. We have help. We have someone we can check in with about our fears. But most of all, our son can be totally honest about his use, because he can trust that this guy isn’t going to overreact.

So, all in all, I think it was good. I feel a little hope. At least my son–who I suppose I should give some kind of name here–can be sure that we are not trying to punish him, but work with him. I feel like maybe we could get to a point where we are all, at some very basic level, on the same team. I don’t need him to be perfect, I need him to be safe enough and healthy enough to survive his adolescence.

UPDATE: I talked with my son and he says he wants to continue with counseling. I think this is a very good thing.

Posted in Ups | 9 Comments »

Part of the Problem

Posted by Leo G on February 28, 2007

This is NOT news to me. From CNN:

CHICAGO, Illinois (Reuters) — A majority of U.S. high school students say they get bored in class every day, and more than one out of five has considered dropping out, according to a survey released Wednesday.

The survey of 81,000 students in 26 states found two-thirds of high school students complain of boredom, usually because the subject matter was irrelevant or their teachers didn’t seem to care about them.

“They’re not having those interactions, which we know are critical for student engagement with learning,” said Ethan Yazzie-Mintz, who led the annual survey by Indiana University researchers.

Posted in Contributors | 2 Comments »

Maybe/Maybe Not

Posted by Leo G on February 28, 2007

I awoke to nine messages on my cell phone. Clearly, something had happened. It turns out my son got into a fistfight at school on Friday. He was skipping math class and somehow his best friend (@$%%&*!) got into a fight and my son went to his defense, punching someone in the face. I’m not sure how or when the school found out (the four of them had made a pact not to tell.) but we got the call this morning. Did I mention that this friend is not on Santa’s “good” list? He is a major part of the problem. And did I mention that my son is extremely loyal? A crappy combination at the moment.

Then, I learned that my father-in-law, who has been in a care facility for the last few months is probably actively dying. Or maybe not. They won’t know because his Living Will and other instructions mandate that he not be hospitalized, so no tests to know what happened. All we know is that he had some back pain, and then they found him pale and non-responsive. It could have been a kidney stone, a heart attack, or another stroke. But we won’t know. All we can do is wait and provide pain relief.

The only redeeming thing about the day is that we have an initial appointment with a counselor for my son this afternoon. It was already set up, so the timing ends up being good. We’ll spend some time talking together, including letting him know that while he’s suspended from school, he is also grounded. And then he’ll have some time alone with the counselor. How he responds to this may well determine what happens next. We’ve researched the local treatment facility and will put in an application soon. However, there is a waiting list. And we’re not sure it’s the best next step. Maybe having someone to talk to will help enough. Maybe we can still salvage something without having to “hand him over” to the treatment facility. Maybe he will suddenly start to care again and will cooperate with us saving his life. Maybe not.

Posted in Coping | 1 Comment »