Just don’t hurt him too much

He knew. His discomfort with what he had allowed was written on his face. His body language was that of someone who would rather justify and rationalise, than admit that he could have done better.

The  restless  movements,  the  intermittent  sighs  in  his  sentences,  which  were  being  delivered  in  a  hasty  self absorbed way, as if he was talking to himself, more than to me, showed his inner conflict. “I  suppose  you  find  me  boring”,  he  tossed  at  me.  “No,  there  is  no  such  thing  as  an  irrelevant  experience  in  life. Everything  matters.  By  telling  me  even  that  which  you  thinking  is  not  related  to  your  problem,  will  help  me  to understand you better. In this way, I am sure I can offer better support to you”, I reassured him.

“You  see,  hey  man,  it  is  like  this.  He  is  a  very  lively  little  boy.  You  know  what  I  mean!  He  never  stops,  man.  He drives  his  mother  mad!  She  is  on  the  go  with  him  all  day.  Now,  her  health  is  not  so  good.  So,  she  finds  him  a handful  to  deal  with.  Even  his  teachers  say  that  they  cannot  control  him!”  he  said  as  if  the  teacher’s  ability  was proof of his decision to act in a particular way, which was causing him this deep conflict.

“You know, after a day at work, with all the stress and problems I have to face every day, I just don’t want to have to go home and then put up with his demands”, he said, avoiding my eyes. “Most evenings after work, I’d rather go to the gym for awhile. This is a good way for me to get rid of my stress, you know”, he said, justifying his absence from  home at the  time which most families  find  hard to  deal with. Between 5pm  and 7pm  the children need  to be fed and bathed, and if you are doing a reasonable task as a parent, they could even find themselves tucked up in bed  for  the  night  by  7pm  or  so!  This  is  not  always  the  part  we  like  to  play  as  parents  with  the  child  resisting  our efforts as every turn to not bath now, or to watch a little more TV, or not wanting to eat what has been prepared. Many parents would love to be at gym while someone else did the work, I thought to myself.

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