I just, sigh. Le sigh, in fact.
Some of you may remember my diatribe about being so very, very worried about my niece, what with the compulsive lying and the hypersexuality and the schizophrenia and the not-so-great mom.
Mother In Law came and stayed the weekend, and left early in tears after getting a phone call from her daughter, Not So Great Mom (my sister in law, so from here on out she's SIL). Turns out that Niece innocently asked to listen to her music on the TV instead of her iPad, as is her habit. This led to the discovery that Niece's iPad had been confiscated at school, which she neglected to mention. So SIL goes through Niece's backpack, and discovers 1) a condom, which she later finds out Niece stole from SIL's stash (which is apparently hidden very well? at least from what I hear? The fact that she knew where to look shocked SIL), and 2) a note written between Niece and School Friend detailing a plan to get Niece over to a boy's house so they could have sex.
All of this struck MIL and SIL like a thunderous revelation of damnation from heaven. My reaction was somewhat less so.
As in, DUH. As in, COME ON PEOPLE, HOW DID YOU NOT SEE THIS COMING 2 YEARS AGO AND NOT THINK HEY, MAYBE WE SHOULD BE PROACTIVE AND TALK TO THIS CLEARLY CONFUSED LITTLE GIRL WHO HAS A DISORDER SHE DOESN'T QUITE UNDERSTAND, WHO IS DESPERATE FOR ATTENTION, AND WHO IS, OH, YOU KNOW, A TEENAGER.
I guess that would have been too logical, to have an upfront, open communication about sex and relationships and why lying and sneaking around when it comes to sex rarely ends well for anyone.
Here's what cracks me up (not really). SIL is just devastated because Niece should have known better — sex at her age! Immoral premarital sex! And granted, Niece has terrible judgment as she has proven over and over again, so from that aspect, I'm a little terrified too. But SIL is stuck now, and wants to do something about her daughter's moral transgressions. Only she can't, because she had her one-month boyfriend move in and live with them for a good year. They're married now, but if sex before marriage was such a big deal to SIL, then maybe she shouldn't have done it herself. And then expected her daughter to view it as anything but okay.
Because, to Niece, all she sees is —hey, this is what you do! And that's fine! She's a teenager, she's interested in sex, go for it! But for SIL to turn all hypocritical at this point? REALLY? You cannot behave one way, and expect your daughter to understand that it's okay that Mommy does it but not okay when anyone else does it and CERTAINLY not okay when you do it. That's just idiocy.
So now Niece's phone privileges have been taken away. Which apparently extends to family. So I can't call her up and talk to her at all, see how she's doing. No idea where this is going to go. And the sad thing is, this DOESN'T have to be a problem. The lying, yes. The interest in sex and boys? NO. You need to communicate more. You need to help your daughter. You need to be there for her. What you DON'T need to do is teach her that she's a terrible person for all of this. That she's in trouble always. Because you know what that tells her to do? JUST LIE BETTER. And you lose her in the process.
And I called this a year ago. MIL left sobbing, and My Dear Emerson and I look at each other, and just shake our heads — because we both knew this was going to happen, and there is absolutely nothing surprising here.
It would have been nice to be pleasantly surprised by SIL's reaction and handling of the situation, though. Maybe in another life.
I CAN'T. I just can't anymore, with this insanity. INSANITY.
My niece, my poor, confused, inept niece.
Apparently the school has said that she's had some "incidents." As in, being caught groping and being groped by boys on campus. And apparently she's had too many. And apparently she lives in the most FUCKED UP PLACE EVER, because there's some sort of county policy that says that when students commit too many (what? misdemeanors? I don't even) they have to spend a day in jail.
IN FUCKING JAIL. For breaking school rules. Yeah, that'll teach em! And in this case, let's take a mentally and emotionally unstable young girl and throw her in jail for making out with boys. Yeah, let's do that.
So my poor inept niece, lucky for all of us, freaked out and tried to kill herself. I say lucky for all of us, because she did it ineptly. She took the first things she could find, which basically amounted to a bottle of Tylenol and some herbal supplements. All it did was make her vomit. Thank you, lord, in times like this I'm glad she tends to screw things up, because if you're going to screw something up that had better be it.
I don't even know right now. I don't even think I'm making sense. WHERE IS THIS PLACE SHE LIVES AND HOW DOES THIS EVEN WORK. How can this be okay? How can there not be some child advocate somewhere who steps up and says, "Hey, there are some mental issues involved here, maybe we should take that into consideration?"
I try to form a coherent thought on this and I'm just mentally sputtering.