Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Getting behind something, and parenting

Polyfulcrum gets back to the business of writing:

This is an odd week, to be followed by an even odder week. PG and G are going to Vegas this weekend. They try to take a trip yearly at least, to get away from the being parents, spouses etc. This year is a bit different, as G is nearly complete with her divorce, at least the bits that are on paper. I am happy that PG is getting a chance to be elsewhere, and have found lots of benefit myself in being else-who as well, so that's all good. It can be hugely helpful to pull out of the roles that define most of your days and step into a space where you can be truly yourself, on whatever level you choose to be, without regard to responsibilities to others.

After they get back from their trip, a friend of PG's is going to be visiting for a few days. She's currently living in another state, and is contemplating moving here. The main reason she's here is to work on getting her professional license transferred to this state. PG is looking forward to seeing her in person again, as they chat and email semi-frequently, but have only met IRL once.

She is also currently in a messy relationship situation. It looks likely that her marriage has fallen victim to a poorly executed triad attempt. With all the emotional upheaval locally in the past few months, I'm having a tough time getting behind PG's desire to connect more deeply with this woman on an emotional and physical level. We had a couple of fairly vigorous conversations about it, and I brought it up at the local discussion group Monday as well. Just getting the opportunity to talk with others about the situation and get input was hugely helpful to me. I was able to make the transition from: "Why are you even thinking about this?" to "How much can I give you and still feel good about it?".

At this point it would appear that we have boundaries set up that we can both be supportive of, even if it isn't everything either of us would like all at once. In the event that she moves to the area and divests herself of the emotional shit-storm that surrounds her currently, PG and I can revisit the conversation from a more long-term sustainable view.

S and I are working pretty hard to get his 11 year old daughter on track academically and emotionally. Yep, this is the not-so-glamorous side of poly live-in situations that you don't see a whole lot about in books. Dealing with poly "step children" can be a significant effort on the part of the outside partner(s). That issue is complicated by her mother, who isn't the custodial parent, but has visitation and isn't a very healthy support system.

The daughter has a particular issue with completion of projects. She'll do the work, but not turn it in. As the level of independent responsibility for school continues to increase, there seems very little that we can do to make it happen. Is it acceptable to allow a kid that doesn't have the skills being requested to fall on their face? What are the baby steps we can take to get her moving in a direction that would support her learning those skills?

Her teacher says she's made a remarkable turn-around since S and I took over the homework time from her mother, so something is going well, but it's still tough to feel like she's really putting forward effort when my 7 year old already has better skills in this regard. At this point, it feels like trying to stuff a cat into a box. You can push, but if they don't want to go, you're likely to get scratched up in the process.

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