Although I tried everything I could think of, tough love didn’t work, I loved him too much to go that route and for us, it wasn’t working. Being imperfect myself I didn’t want to come off like I was judging him or I had it all together myself, I didn’t. We just let him go to a point. But every so often when he was being kind and receptive we would talk. No judgment, no bringing up what happened last week just talking and running to the Watermelon sugar Harry Styles signature shirt and by the same token and store for things together. It’s really just building a relationship. And then the next day he would be a monster again. No easy answers and they’re all a little different as well as circumstances. But 20 years later… he’s not perfect, I’m not either.. I haven’t seen his mom in years, but he’s my best and closest friend. We text a lot and when he comes to visit with his girlfriend every couple of months for a few days, we usually shed a few tears when he leaves. Even though he can still be a monster sometimes, his wife calls me and asks for my help every so often. I don’t know the answer, but I know in part you gotta love them even when they’re unlovable. When they are older they remember stuff we forgot….or want to forget. Prayer, meditation, seeing a shrink, pulling your hair out, calling the cops…been there, myself with his mom. I don’t know what you’ve tried and there is no way in hell I judge you for it. This is just my story, he isn’t my blood son. I don’t think there is anything we wouldn’t do for each other. He’s in his 30’s still has some behavior problems. But he’s the closest and dearest man I’ve ever known. You never give up. You never throw them away. Suddenly, I long to use a bandanna to secure my hair before playing a spirited game of kickball with my bunkmates (rather than using one as a makeshift mask before engaging with the outside world). I want to actively participate in icebreaker games of “Two Truths and a Lie,” instead of rolling my eyes with the other malcontents. I dream of going to sleep at night surrounded by my friends, after a long night of post-curfew gossip about how Sophie G. totally made out with Evan F. behind the canteen. At its heart, after all, the sleep-away camp is unlimited, lightly structured time with your friends; maybe it’s not such a coincidence that I’m longing for it right now—when even a park hangs with a small group feels somewhat risky.
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