Family Ties 4  

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Family Ties 3


The young man was a father and nothing could make him happier. He realized that he truly loved having someone to care for. His wife was in a good mood most of the time. In fact he thought she had never been happier than she was during those first couple of years. The young child began to walk and talk. He found a way to get things off the tables and counters. The young man realized that "baby proof" isn't really all that it's cracked up to be. He even overlooked the fact that the girl would blame him everytime the toddler did something. He knew that she was just having a bad day, or was just tired. He never blamed her for her actions he simply ignored the anger in her voice and took care of the problem. Finally one night his wife came to him and said "I want another baby." He hesitated only a second before agreeing. After all one child had done wonders for his family. Another would make it only better.

She had to have the same surgery to repair the problems she had conceiving. After a few months she was indeed pregnant again. With a small child and morning sickness, the girl was not quite the happy camper she had been during the first pregnancy. She was often moody. At those times, the young man knew to stay out of sight and out of mind. He would often take his son for walks or out front to look at flowers and bugs. That didn't usually last long as she would be at the door to complain about him letting their boy get dirty, and catch all manner of sicknesses that those dirty bugs must have. He would agree and bring the boy inside to clean him up. Often they would just sit and look at picture books until she found some other reason to tell the young man what he was doing that was wrong.

Fortunately for the young family, this pregnancy was on time and without complication. They had a second healthy baby boy. A mirror image of the first child. The young man was happy again, because she was happy again. He always sensed that as long as she remained content everybody else in the family would be ok. He either failed or refused to notice that while she loved the children, she could never say anything good about them without first saying something critical. the oldest received the worst of it. She would always tell him what a messy, rude child he was and then in the next breath tell him how much she loved her little boy.
As the younger child began to grow, he received the same treatment. She loved her children she just didn't understand how to tell them. She even believed that she still loved her husband, although when she was honest with herself she blamed him for her moody personality. She never considered the possibility that she was depressed.

The next few years were ok, but there were many arguments. The young man had become tired of taking the blame for all things in the house. He began to fight back. He would bring up her shortcomings when she would criticize him. It didn't take long before he was working more and more. His small business began to grow with him so engrossed in work. They began to see the benefits of his hard work and moved to a larger home. She never once considered complimenting him for the hard work he did. After all it was his job as far as she was concerned. She took care of the children, and he was expected to take care of making the money. That was how it worked for her parents and they had done ok.

The next year she was ready to move again. The young man was constantly at work now. He told her that wherever she wanted to go was fine with him. She found the next house and he moved them in. So began the cycle. The young man would work from morning to night, sometimes not getting home until early morning hours. He wasn't being unfaithful to his wife, he just traded his family for his work. He saw the kids on weekends and he made sure to make their school events. As they began to enter youth sports he always made sure to attend every game. He would cheer them on quietly from the side of the bleachers or out behind a fence. He never got to be the dad shouting in the bleachers "That's my Boy!". Mom was proud when her children did well but couldn't understand why she couldn't offer them a single compliment at those times.

The years began to pass him by and they moved. Every year they moved, and he questioned her once on it. It turned out that she liked the feeling of starting over with a clean slate. A new house offered her that opportunity. The children never complained about moving any longer. They knew what it meant when mom got the plastic bins out of the garage. They had learned not to get too attached to neighborhood kids because it wouldn't be long before they had to start again.



There were two brothers separated by 3 years. They grew up moving around a little bit...





Quick note...This is based loosely on a number of people I know or have known over the years. My wife went through the terrible labor, a really good friend of mine once used to drive 4 hours to see his girlfriend on the weekends (and she did meet another guy during that time). I got to thinking about some kids I've dealt with and this seemed to be a common theme amongst those with problems. A broken family. Not just a divorced one, but a broken one. I thought I'd maybe bring a little glimpse of what a broken family looks like from my perspective. Sorry for the grammar but I felt that I should leave the characters without a name, because they are anybody who has been in this situation... Anyway I hope you enjoyed my little tale..

This entry was posted at Wednesday, April 07, 2010 . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

20 comments

Wow! I really loved this story. You've got a real gift. I "felt" it. Keep on writing my friend!

April 7, 2010 at 4:11 PM

Pat..thank you....I've never been much for short stories, but i saw something the other day that sorta set this one off...Thanks again..I appreciated the compliment :)

April 7, 2010 at 5:13 PM

Loved it!

April 7, 2010 at 5:47 PM

Thank you Ms. Anthropy :)

April 7, 2010 at 7:46 PM

This story was amazing.
It really was.

April 7, 2010 at 11:42 PM

That was great! I got to the end and was hoping for a part 5!

April 8, 2010 at 2:09 AM

I have been wondering if this was your family or not...but you definately have seen this from your perspective, I know.

April 8, 2010 at 6:07 AM

Joe...Nah not my family, but I've had those close to me experience some of this, and I've talked with lots of kids that have experienced much of it. Less than a week ago I sat and heard a man telling me about his life over coffee. Part of this was his relationship with his wife..He lost his business though :( Parts of it were my early relationship with a girl, as well as a friend (girl) who had to move away from high school her senior year. I sort of just lumped all the expereriences I had along with those I was told or watched and tried to make a little story. What I have witnessed while coaching kids and being a den parent (cubscouts) is the impact a broken home has on children. I also witnessed how much of an impact it can have on my oldest son as my ex and I traveled through our divorce.

I wrote it because a few days ago a boy I used to coach got married to his H.S. sweetheart. They were fighting all the time, but he told me that they would be fine once they had a kid. I asked him what made him think a child would fix it, and he told me that it worked for his parents. Our kids learn what they live and I just wanted to try to put a picture to it. Hope it turned out ok for you guys....

April 8, 2010 at 7:25 AM

margg...Thank you very much...

Jerry...I could have written a part 5, 6 and on..lol that is my problem I can't end a dang story...Thanks I'm glad you liked it

April 8, 2010 at 7:26 AM

This is a wonderful story, Bendigo! I can tell you from my own experience that you totally nailed the older sister's perspective. I'm very happy now but I also come from a not-just-divorced-but-BROKEN family of origin and had I made different choices at a couple of critical points, I could have ended up just like her. Fortunately, though, I ended up marrying the best husband ever and after I finished reading part 4 I made sure to tell him how totally unbelievably rockin' awesome he is.

April 8, 2010 at 8:30 AM

Enjoy??!? Bendigo, at this point, you can't just enjoy a story like that!! It is AMAZING!! I was hooked! The end is great because it shows the vicious circle and all..seriously, I'm all over this story!!

April 8, 2010 at 8:31 AM

Really well written, better yet very well expressed story. Thank you so much for sharing this. Maybe one day I will get up the nerve to posy my short story.
really loved it bendigo

April 8, 2010 at 4:48 PM

Good writes! Keep on inking.

April 8, 2010 at 4:53 PM

Lauren..thanks...I was hoping I could get close on the girl perspecitve..(i admit it was guesswork). I'm glad you could break that cycle that's no easy task:)

Sarah..Aw thanks...I was hoping to get the point across that we need to be aware of what our children learn not just by our words, but our actions..


Lisa Marie..Thank you, all I know if you put it up I"m sure to be there reading it. I love the way you write and I'm sure your story would be great...So now I have something to nag you about :)

Momma Fargo..Thank you, and I will say the same to you..I look forward to your next post (as usual)

April 8, 2010 at 7:33 PM

Great story Bendigo! For a while there, I was expecting you to say that these were your experiences....

Fantastic character development.... You made me feel compassion for the father, and some sort of sympathy/anger for the mother....

Very well written! Are there going to be any more?

April 8, 2010 at 8:13 PM

ABAO...thanks a lot... It's possible...I have a few more that are written in part...

Gotta work up the nerve again before I try another..lol

April 8, 2010 at 8:25 PM

Very heartfelt and touching story. There was an experience for all of us in there. Good can come out of all our trials if we learn from them.
Very well written.

April 8, 2010 at 9:25 PM

Deserton..Thank you..and thanks for reading :)

April 8, 2010 at 10:51 PM

I liked your story...it felt real. I too have known many people who shared bits and pieces of your story. My labor was like your wife's...my daughter was ten and half pounds..need I say more. I think what i jound in your story was it was told completely from the male perspective (of course you are a man.) But I would love to see the same story written from the female perspective. How the girl felt about guy. Did she somehow feel neglected emotionally by him? Was she trying to replace a father figure in him? Did he understand her feelings of isolation and loneliness within their relationship?
I bet it would be great if you could do version 2...and write it from the girl's perspective. A kind of he said she said. Anyhow..good job!

April 9, 2010 at 11:40 PM

DrSoosie...Interesting idea...I appreciate the feedback. I will have to think on that a little bit. I'm sure I know enough women to get some perspective (My sister would tell me more than I want to know..lol)

April 9, 2010 at 11:48 PM

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