Our teenager has been feeling alienated, and I don't think we knew the extent of her angst - we thought she was just grumpy about moving, but we didn't realize how unpleasant it was to stay in the rec room and how she had ended up in the position of babysitting the little ones so often. She and Elly had a good talk before April left for the farm, and over the month that April was gone, Elly realized that she really does need more attention - she's plucky, and we don't always remember that she is still a kid, with feelings that get easily hurt.
The interesting thing about that little chunk of stupidity is that he totally failed to see that April was within earshot or had been somehow or other told that he'd made a lot of noise about how she was being a spoiled little princess who didn't realize that she was asking Mike and Dee and the kids to die in a gutter and blah-blah-blah. I'll get to how John and Elly simply do not want to see that their obvious and well-stated belief that their children are trying to destroy them hampers their attempt to be effective parents later. What I'd like to discuss today is how that need to have a place for just himself makes him a bad father because it blinds him to who these children who make incomprehensible and unfair demands on his precious free time are.
If you think that his sweeping generalizations about a third child he doesn't really know at all are a new thing, the Halloween 1983 series should teach you that this is not the case. We know for a fact that Lizzie is terrified of new faces so the idea of taking her trick-or-treating is sort of a problematic proposition at best. When a new (and thus scary and evil person) made things so that Lizzie could become aware of a new dire threat from which to hide from, we could see that her hiding in the bushes from scary, scary unknown person was an inevitability. John has no idea who Lizzie is as a person, though. He didn't understand why Lizzie hid in the bushes and interpreted events in the fashion we expect of him by assuming that his children are all out to make a big fool out of him because children are born defiant and evil and filled with an attitude that makes them disrespect idiots who do crap-all to deserve it.