dreadedcandiru2 (dreadedcandiru2) wrote,

On the public courtesy of the Patterson children.

The reason I left off where I did is that we all know one thing: Elly despaired of ever getting her children to keep their rooms tidy. The same impulse that made her chase Mike down in a blind rage, shove a trumpet in his unwilling hands and fulminate about his selfish, short-sighted betrayal of the love in her great big heart also made her look at a kid's messy room and see not a messy room but instead just another sign that her heartless children hate to see her being happy. Worse, they make the hateful and wrong insinuation that her helpful, loving advice is corrosive, dismissive nagging from a bitter failure who has a heart full of sulphuric acid and who only had children in the first place so she could have someone to tyrannize and demonstrate her loathing of everyone everywhere unchallenged.

This sort of unresolved tension as regards their natural (if not especially helpful) reaction to her insane belief that by erasing any signs of their presence, she's helping them seems to me to be worsened by her occasional discovery that the children she's written off as irredeemable slobs who love chaos and hate adult authority are thought of by other people as pliable, placid. pleasant worker bees. When she confronts her offsprings about the seeming paradox, she gets told that doing all the stuff they gladly do for others mutates into a hateful chore when she or John are the proposed beneficiary. This is because she can never seem to remember for very long that her children do not see the world she does. The same woman who's baffled, angered and scandalized by the obvious lie that a child sees an hour as an eternity can't wrap her pea brain around the fact that her children join everyone else in the world in seeing a blustering, raging and arrogant loudmouth with impossibly high standards and an allergy to thanking people. Since she can't see that no one wants to help someone incapable of gratitude, she's destined to spend the Middle Years a frustrated mess.
Tags: the middle years

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