Monday, December 04, 2006


The scene:

Laying on my bed, applying a hot compress to my left breast, talking on the phone to Mr. Tugboat:

Me: I had a really good time at dinner with you and little J-man (his son). Thank you for meeting up with Zac and I. It was a little hectic with two kids and two adults, but I think we survived.

Mr. Tugboat: As soon as you got there, I could feel little J-man tense up. I don't think he wanted you there.

Me: Oh, I'm sorry about that. I wanted to spend time with him.

Mr. Tugboat: It's just so weird. He gets along with all women, including the ones that live at my house, the ones we see at the credit union, and he really loved the woman I went on a date with before you and I were in a relationship. He played so well with her.

*one, two punch* now curled up in the fetal position

Me: (feebly, in my opinion) I don't know what to tell you. Maybe he senses that there is something going on with us and he's scared that I'm going to take the place of his Mommy. Zac is also much younger than little J-man and they're both only children. Maybe he feels threatened by Zac and the attention he gets.

Mr. Tugboat: I don't know. Maybe. If Zac were five, it would be a different situation.

Me: Zac isn't five.

Mr. Tugboat: I just wish that little J-man was more comfortable around you. He's just so tense when you're around.

Me: (silent, with mounting heartburn and the knowledge that I will up for a couple of hours agonizing over this conversation)

*final punch to the right temple. Down for the count*

I've been rejected by plenty of people in my lifetime, just not people that aren't tall enough to ride the big rollercoasters at Magic Mountain. Having a five year-old dislike me is one thing. Having his Dad, who I happen to like quite a bit, get very concerned about his five year-old not liking my son and I is totally another.

If anyone had asked me before I entered into a dating relationship that involved a five year-old, I would have told them, "Well, damn, you know that I'm not very good at being one of those great, wild and kooky adults around kids. Some people just get kids and I'm not one of those people. Did I mention that I'm fabulous with pre-teens and teenagers?"

I'm also just not handling things very well. The fatigue has kept up all weekend and my breast started hurting two days ago. When I massaged it, some very small fluid came out and, for those of you that don't want to go through my archives, I can tell you that I stopped breast feeding about ten months ago. I don't know what's going on with my body. Everything feels off.


Dee said...

Relationships are always more difficult when there are children involved. I think kids between about 5 and 14 are probably have the most difficulty accepting a new love interest in their parent's life. I bet if you hang in there, things will get better with him.

And, please get yourself to a doctor soon. Sounds like something is definitely a little out of whack.

Amanda. said...

Wear a Spiderman costume the next time you go out with J-man. I work with kids and live close to several 5 year old boys... Spidey is the way to go.

Also, ditto to what Dee said and I whole-heartedly second getting yourself to a doctor ASAP.

I know you mentioned taking a pg test and it was a BFN but if there any chance that... you know...

Melanie said...

As someone who used to be one of those kids who got to meet a number of her dad's girlfriends (although probably just a fraction of the total number), I can tell you that it's a really scary thing -- no matter how nice the person is. In fact, sometimes really nice people are even scarier because then you can see that your dad might actually want to keep dating them. J might be having a hard time understanding or believing that the divorce is final; he might be wishing that his parents would get back together (I can't tell you how long I harbored those thoughts); he might be thinking any number of things. I know that it's still hard, but I would try to think of it as him not liking what you represent (change, his parents not getting back together, etc.), rather than him not liking YOU. And yes, please get your boob looked at (by someone other than Mr. Tugboat).

Ali said...

Yep, get to the doctor. If it has hurt this long, it is worth checking out.

And the whole 5 year old not liking you thing, hmmmm. I wonder if it is really all you. I mean, his dad is around when he can be, so maybe he feels jilted by his dad to use up "their" time and share it with the ladies. I mean, how many women has he dated have been around him? I mean, the ones from work and other places are just passing through the day. But maybe he is tired of some popping in for awhile and then never popping in again because they broke up?

Really though, he is 5 and I think that just comes with the territory. He probably does feel a bit threatened by Zac stealing some of his glory and just has hard time sharing his dad. My 5 year old daughter can be mean to my boyfriend and definitely protects me and has my back. She always sides with me, no matter what. It's been hard because I have to referee at times, so I can only imagine how she may feel if he had a child that was coming around too.

As the parent though, it is up to him on how to make this positive. This is a great learning tool to teach his son how to act towards a one year old boy. He needs to approach it in a fun, positive light and maybe the boy won't tense up so much? (I really wonder if Mr. Tugboat is the one that feels tense, having the two kids together and all and either passing that on to his son or thinking it is his son, when it really isn't?)

Hugs and good luck. It is hard working out all these things. It takes time and effort and I hope ya'll can work it out.

mynewshoes said...

Ok, ok, so you've already made a doctor's appointment by now, so I'm not going to tell you to do that.

As someone who spends a lot of time with kids under the age of 8, my first impression is that being "tense" is definitely not the same as disliking you. Kids are tense for all kinds of reasons. Because they want to impress you and want you to like them, because something else weird is going on in their life. Perhaps because of jealousy or maybe the kid is constipated. Kids often lack the vocabulary to say what is really going on. Adults put all kinds of interpretations and assumptions onto that, and they're not always right - often it is much more complex.

You're likable. So is Zac, but you're talking about a relationship between a son and his probably has a lot less to do with you than you fear.