A better man

I could say it’s been a pretty ordinary week – nothing particularly unusual has happened, just the usual hellish day-to-day grind with my delinquent son, but I have responded to it in a different way. I’ve come out of denial – stopped blaming the drugs, because it is he who has made the choices. Three times now he has been clean when he left prison, and has claimed a guilty conscience, gusshed apologies and made promises, then chosen to go back to his previous life, thereby making life miserable for everybody.

I don’t think he is a very nice person, and anyone who heard the full story would probably agree with me.

My daughter Claire told me that only a few hours ago he claimed “Mum’s turned her back on me just when I’m recovering. I’m better now than I’ve ever been.” He only says that when he’s in a really bad way. She tried to point out that he was extremely drunk and in drug withdrawal, but he continued to be in denial.

The police are always nice to me. There’s no reason for them to be anything else, but I’m grateful anyway.They are also gentle with Paul, and even manage to be polite to his sister Laura, although she has tried their patience with her regular accusations of crimes against her person and her purse. I just wish they weren’t so under-staffed. I made an emergency call to them tonight and it was an hour-an-a-half before they showed up at the address I gave them, because it’s Friday night – the beginning of the weekend, and they were busy.

By the time they got there (Claire’s home) Paul was long gone, even though he was in such a mess he could hardly walk. He’s been recalled back to prison. The arrest warrant was issued a couple of days ago, but he and his girlfriend are thinking of going on the run. He’s so wasted on drug withdrawal and alcohol consumption that I don’t think he’s up to it, but I’ve seen him like this before, and he could wind up dead if he doesn’t get arrested soon. He’s very unwell – unwell and unwelcome in most places he goes. His charm slips somewhat when he’s been drinking, but now he’s main-lining cocaine and has become totally obnoxious.

I hope the police pick him up soon. His girlfriend is a drug addicted liar who’s backed up all his stories – including the one about them having rented a place in Ilfracombe (she lives in sheltered accommodation in the same town as me) but she is also a very vulnerable young person. He is already damaging her, and maybe when he’s in prison she’ll move on.

I don’t want Paul anywhere near me or the rest of my family, particularly my grandchildren.

Paul said that this time, if he goes to prison, he will come out a better man. He will make us all proud of him. He has since suggested that he may become a professional shoplifter.

I rest my case.

©Jane Paterson Basil

Author: janebasilblog

Jane sits around and writes a bit, then she does some other stuff, then she sits around and writes a bit more, then she eats something. Sometimes, at night, she goes to bed.

24 thoughts on “A better man”

    1. Thank you for your supportive comment – it means a lot , particularly at this time. I have five grandsons, ranging from eighteen months to nineteen years, and my eldest has seen far too much already – but he’s strong, and pretty wonderful…


      1. They are blessed to have you in their lives. Our “kids” can & will make their own decisions, and until they’ve had enough pain from the addiction (and the lifestyle), they’re not likely to change.
        Thank God the grandbabies have you.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you’ve bounced back and am sorry I’m not there for you more, as you are for me – I want to be, but every day is filled with a new kind of chaos. I spend the days switching my laptop on and off between pockets of weirdness. But it’s no excuse.
      I’m not sure how I’m feeling, but I’ve seen the light. I know that there has not been a time over the past ten years or more when he wasn’t playing me. I’m not certain about this, but I have a feeling I never want anything to do with him again. I think he knows this, but it doesn’t matter as much as it may otherwise, because he’s found a vulnerable girl to bleed dry – not that she has anything, but she’s waiting on a stack of cash.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sounds like a bloody vampire! He also knows you’ve continued to cave in to him over the years. He has no reason to suspect you won’t eventually do it again. That’s probably the best reason to stay strong. Could be your change of direction may be a catalyst for him in the future? (And I have NO idea what you mean about being there for me. I’ve just been stuck in spam hell like many others, apparently. You may be able to help Paul, but you can’t fight the “machine!” 😀 )

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Maybe I’ll be a catalyst, but I doubt it. I suspect he is, and always has been, bad through and through. I loved him too much to be able to see it. I’ll focus on Sarah, Claire, my five grandchildren, and poor, lost Laura. She has more excuse than Paul – she always had serious mental health issues. She’s calmed down a bit. When I see her in town I take her for coffee, and we talk until she loses focus. I’ll probably outlive her, and I want her to die knowing that her mother loved her. I haven’t loved any one child more than another. They are all different, but there has been a closeness between us that was unique, and her illness leaves a hole that will never begin to be filled, unless, by some miracle, she recovers, but I don’t expect that to happen. As for Paul, he may have killed my love – at the least, he’s maimed it.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Well just because you’re keeping your distance from him, and because you’re seeing him more objectively doesn’t mean you love him any the less. It just means you are beginning to not only survive the difficult relationship with him, but thrive as well. Your love for him will always be there, just perhaps a different perception of love?

        Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s how I feel – though it doesn’t help when he ringss me from an unknown number and begs me to buy stolen meat. “I’ll do you a special deal as you’re my mum.” He knows how I feel about stolen goods, but he’s so desperate for drug money he has to keep trying. It makes me feel dirty.
      He’s camping somewhere with his girlfriend, hiding out from the cops. Stupid man.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. He’s the victim of his own poor decision making and actions. Stand in your power, Jane. There is no need or reason for you to sink to the same depths. He is indeed very silly.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I’ve only just realized he has no empathy – never did have. e was diagnosed with Asperghers, but I’ve never been quite sure if it was an acurate diagnosis. I hope it was, because if not the terms sociopath and psychopath come to mind.
        I’m over-thinking this, aren’t I?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Yes and no, to your last question. It’s understandable that you have a wish to get your head around the motivation and drivers for his behaviour. Sociopath comes to mind, and a brain addled with long term drug abuse. that would certainly put him right in the basket of not caring about anyone else, their feelings, the impact of his behaviour and demands, and the sole focus on his immediate needs having to be met cost what it may.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. My daughter Claire thinks that Paul’s girlfriend is good for him. I’ll defer judgement and see (from a distance) how things develop when he comes out of prison.
        Apparently his girlfriend told him he had no empathy. After a few weeks she’s figured out somethig that took me a quarter of a century to notice 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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