I never finished college, one reason being that I had a tragedy in my life that pretty much shut me down for a while, and the second being because now that I’m an adult, with a home and pets and shit I have to take care of by myself, it’s harder to find the time, energy and cash flow to go back to school. With that said, I tend to have a buttload of respect for those who DO find the time and energy and cash flow to go back. It’s admirable because I know how difficult it is, and I seriously give those people credit. However, my statements above are with the caveat of how said person should take this shit seriously because it’s not High School anymore.
Flash back to approximately 22 months ago – without going into gory detail, a friend of mine from HS moved into my parents house with her two children as she was desperately in need of a place to go when drug addiction problems reared their ugly head. My parents are good people, so they took them all in with little more than a second thought, hoping that they could be the rock for her to stand on, long enough to get her legs back underneath her. My parents, being the awesome people that they are, sat down with her and discussed things like being able to support herself and her children financially, and what it was going to mean to be a single parent and that they wanted her to take full advantage of the situation and better herself. My mother raised my sister and I alone for a number of years between her divorce from my father, and when she married my step-father, so she knows a little bit about what she’s talking about. So, my friend, we’ll call her Lucy, was told she should take the roof my parents were keeping over her head as a blessing, and spend her time trying to get her shit together for the sake of her 2 kids. Work and save some money; go to school and earn your degree. Sounds easy enough, right? My parents pick the kids up, take them to football, make them breakfast, lunch and dinner and even babysit when she has class or work, without much of a fuss. But here we are, almost 2 years later and NOTHING has changed, as far as she lives her life. Yes, she’s been taking classes, but she fails 50% of what she takes, she still leaves her young children in the care of the drug addict – WHO USED TO TAKE THEM TO GO SCORE – and she is still the same irresponsible, immature girl that she was in High School, when I used to have to wake her up in the mornings. Except now, she’s in charge of ruining two additional lives, not just her own.
Children and parenting are privileges in my eyes, not rights, and I take that responsibility seriously, which is why I’ve managed to stay child free for all of my 30 years so far. It’s been a purposeful choice and I’ve been lucky enough to not have to think about it any deeper than “Oh, it’s time for my pill!” I realize that not everyone who gets pregnant PLANNED for the baby, but I feel that if you do have a baby, and keep it, you need to step up to the plate and be a PARENT. Life changes when you become responsible for someone else’s well being and you have to stop making the stupid, selfish choices that we all make when we’re younger. And those stupid, selfish, irresponsible choices are what brings me to my point.
Lucy neglected to “finish” at least one class this semester and needs to complete an assignment, that she’s had ALL SEMESTER, in order to receive credit for the class. It could be said that I’m a decent writer, and it could also be said that I like to help people out when they need it, so I suppose that is why she asked me, however, I learned that my version of ‘help’ was different than hers. I ended up getting a bunch of links and notes from her semester of class emailed to me, and deciphered that I was expected to write the whole damn thing myself. All six pages. In three days. With no help from her, the one who took the class. While she was out on Friday night, drinking away her self inflicted sorrows revolving around the drug addict that she can’t seem to, or doesn’t WANT to let go of.
Typically, I’m the first person lined up to help people that want to help themselves, but I’m not an enabler. I’ve played that role, it sucked and I cried, a lot, and by writing her paper FOR her, not WITH her, I’m simply enabling her ongoing, irresponsible, self destructive behavior. She has managed to not complete either of two tasks, with any measure of success, in the last two years, and frankly, the lack of progress is wearing on both me and my family. They opened their hearts and their lives to her and her children without asking for much in return other than for her to get her life on a forward track. They’ve been subjected to hearing her yell at her kids, when all they want is a hug; they’ve watched her treat her one child as the golden one, and the other as the red headed step child, and when confronted about it, they’ve dealt with her getting defensive and nasty and we’ve all had instances where if a child is being talked to by any of us, she will point blank step in and contradict anything that was said by an adult. Even when it comes down to whether hitting someone is right or wrong. She’ll argue one point with you, but if you change your stance, she’ll argue THAT point, as well. It’s a constant battle and I’m getting the shits of fighting all of the time.
This is my year of NO BULLSHIT. No romantic bullshit, no dating bullshit, no friend bullshit and no family bullshit. If someone would tell me the story of my life, I would probably suggest to them that they are batshit insane and to avoid these crazy ass situations – but advise is always easier to give out than it is to take.