Ground Rules

Whiny people drive me nuts. It hits a nerve with me, because people usually whine when they want their way, or don’t like something they don’t have control over anyway. I whine from time to time, and yes, that drives me nuts too. I like having my own way (who doesn’t?). I like being in control (runs in the family). I have learned how to deal with not getting my way, and most of the time I find it’s really no big deal (it still irritates though). As far as being in control, one thing I’ve learned in the twenty years of marriage is that I’m rarely in control, and fighting for control leads to a very unhappy relationship. I am a firm believer in if you give your control over to God; you have more control in a situation. That twenty-year marriage can attest to that on many occasions. I don’t like it, but I accept it, and have more control because of it.

For example, my younger son has a girlfriend. This is his first and therefore new territory for us (my husband and I). We’re working on boundaries and “ground rules”; so far there hasn’t been any major catastrophes. However, my husband has social issues. There are limits to his stress level. Some may say, it’s all in his head or he can choose to handle things if he really wanted to, but I know his limits. I see them on a daily basis. Sometimes I understand, and sometimes I want to beat him over the head with them, but I digress. Today was a test on his limits. My son’s little girlfriend declared upon being picked up from school that she was kidnapping my son for the rest of the afternoon and he didn’t have a choice in the matter.

On the one hand, most anyone would hear that and think she’s just playing. Well, it hit my husband wrong. He didn’t feel comfortable expressing this to my son and his friend, but it didn’t stop him from calling me at work and asking me what he should do, when in reality he wanted to tell me what to do about it. I was to call her house and let her know that because of the weather (bad storms came through) and my son’s condition (he has type 1 diabetes); “we” don’t feel comfortable with him being gone. If something should happen weather-wise or blood-sugar wise, my husband wanted him home. It sounded pretty lame, and it felt pretty lame, but there was something else as well.

As I spoke to this girl, I realized that by letting her get away with “telling” us what they were going to do, we were giving them the control. Hmmm… So, even though I didn’t like having to do the “dirty” work, and tell them they couldn’t spend time together today, I did feel it was important to establish the boundary and authority. Dagnabbit. I hate it when I feel he’s in the wrong only to realize he really is right.

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One thought on “Ground Rules

  1. My turn for all that can take its dear sweet time getting here! My 6yr old still has eyes only for mommy and I do not relish the day when that changes. Good luck and pass all hard earned nuggets of wisdom my way!

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