Monday, November 1, 2010

Punishments (or What to Do?)

Michael has been a handful lately. Now, this is of course a Michael handful, which is not that bad at all. However, he's been a pain in my rear for the past few weeks, hence the lack of updates.

Michael's environment has changed to the extreme since he moved in with me. One of the biggest changes is that he has free time in which he can CHOOSE what he wants to do! This is a new concept to Michael that he has a difficult time grasping. There is no longer a father yelling at him to do something every second. There is no one riding him to do this, to do that. Instead, he now has choices, which he has never had before.

Therefore, his new found freedom has been thoroughly enjoyable for Michael. He has been having a lot of fun and his grades have suffered because of his poor choices. Michael has not been calling when he is supposed to. After my last post, Michael was, for the most part, put on lock down. I allowed him to participate in future volleyball activities because I refuse to take away something that he has worked so hard for. However, I have stuck with the no football games, which has been hard for him.

More than anything, Michael has had a very difficult time understanding non-physical punishment. This is a child who cowers when you put your hand too close to his head. I thought that not getting beat up would be lovely. I just cannot get through his thick skull that he is in trouble for his actions. The day after volleyball season ended, he asked if he could join a rugby team! I reminded him that he was not allowed to go out and do stuff that was "fun" as his punishment for never calling, ever. A few days later, he asked again. And again. And again. Then, after I sternly told him that I didn't care how much he asked to join, that I would not let him, he went to sulk in his room and fell asleep. I went to Trevor's house to pick him up to get ice cream and then oka (raw fish with coconut cream). As I'm sitting in the KS parking lot, waiting for Trevor to come out, a familiar black truck pulls in next to me.

I think I'm about to have a heart attack.

I have never felt so much like beating someone to a complete and utter pulp.

Michael hopped out of the black truck and stands next to my window.

I am at a loss for words and feel like I would shoot him if I had a gun. In my head, there were gruesome pictures of me beating Michael to a blood stain on the ground. I never understood how a person could just lose it and hurt someone like that until that moment. It took every bit of self control that I had to not get out of the car and beat the everliving shit out of him.

"What the fuck, Michael?" was all I could think of saying that could express my anger without me killing him. He was as disrespectful as Michael could be; that is, he wouldn't look at me, and he made loud sighs and rolled his eyes when I spoke.

When Trevor and I got back to my house, he held me and told me it would be ok, which was exactly what I needed. I asked for him to speak to Michael when he got home, because if I spoke to Michael that evening, I knew that I would say things I would regret. When Michael came home, I immediately got up to take a shower. After my shower, I went to bed.

Trevor woke me up the next morning and had me take him home. I came back with a bottle of orange Fanta, a peace offering of sorts for Michael. He apologized for his behavior the night before and then mentioned his talk with Trevor.

"He's really nice and honest, Rachel. I'm glad you're dating him."

Michael has still not fully grasped the idea of a non-physical punishment. I will not hit him. What can I do to have him understand the consequences of his actions?

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