Apr 14

On Narcissism and Negativity

on narcissism and negativity“What did dad want?”

I put the cell down and said, “Well, he wants to come by here and pick up some of Will’s sketches.  He wants to make copies of them.”



“Jen, are you okay?”

“Sure.  I’m fine,” spoken like a mini-me.

“Jen, it would make sense to get your feelings hurt when your dad comes over here, plucks some of Will’s sketches off the kitchen wall – that hang right next to your sketches – without his asking to take any of your work.  That would hurt feelings.  You can admit that.”

“I know.”


A couple hours later…


“Guys!  I don’t know what to do here.  I have been working on avoiding anything negative.  I try to banish negative self-talk and avoid negative conversations.  I’m trying to make progress here.  I don’t want a cloud hanging over this happy sanctuary that is our home.

 Jen, you are the most positive person I know.  Will, you don’t have a negative bone in your body.  But how do I handle it when something like this happens with your dad?  How do I avoid any discussion about this?

If I let it slide by without acknowledging the potential for hurt feelings, it appears that I’m fine with his actions.  And that’s definitely not the case.

If I bring it to light, then I can’t do so without dipping into the negative.

What would you do?”


Will looks up from his work, “Well, we have to talk about it so that Jen knows that we don’t agree with how he treats her.  It sucks, and it’s not right.”

Jen comes out from the kitchen, “We have to talk about it so that we don’t end up being crappy parents with our own kids.  We have to know what to avoid, but we don’t have to dwell on it.  We can just talk about it and move on and not let the negative take over.”

Apr 14

“Why Are They So Angry?” – Part 2

Margaret stood with a nearly empty pie pan in one hand, and a pie server in the other.  “Hm…  why are men so angry?  Basil, you better help Jon with that one.  I’m not sure I know the answer.” Continue reading →

Apr 14

A Little Jack Daniel’s and A Lot of Advice

a little jack daniel's and a lot of advice“What’ll ya have?” Continue reading →

Apr 14

When the Organized, Independent, Single Mom Drops the Ball

ducks in a row“Mom, you know what I noticed about you?  You are organized.” Continue reading →

Apr 14

“Why Are They So Angry?”

pots in west window“Have you noticed the anger coming out of them?  They are all mad.”  Gladys reached into her beaded bag for a cigarette. Continue reading →

Mar 14

The INFJ and the Narcissist – Part 7

the incredible shrinking womanThe Incredible Shrinking Woman Continue reading →

Mar 14

Talk Like an Artist

talk like an artist“So then I switched from the soft, muted technique you see here, to a palette knife technique.  Do you see how it catches the light?  Do you see the depth as the light changes?  It’s fun to switch techniques and infuse new energy into the process.” Continue reading →

Mar 14

Walking on Eggshells

walking on eggshellsShe’d walked on eggshells in hiking boots.  She’d walked across eggshells in heels.  She’d even walked on eggshells in bare feet.  It didn’t matter how delicately she stepped.  She’d tried to step around them.  She knew the eggshells would cut the soles of her feet.  And still – every day – she walked on eggshells. Continue reading →

Mar 14

Conversations with Kids in Cars

“Even if it was legal, even if they had the money to do it, kids could never run a business because adults just don’t respect them.  Kinda like boys don’t respect girls.  Same thing.”

I reach over to turn down the radio.  “Jen, why do you say that?”  I look at Will, “You gotta slow down a bit, it’s 25 in this neighborhood.”

“Well, I guess grownups don’t respect kids cuz they think kids can’t handle responsibilities.  They say stuff like, ‘You can’t do that, you’re still a kid.’”

“How is that like boys not respecting girls?”  I turn back to watch the traffic, “Nice job on that lane-change there, Will.  Good job remembering to signal.”

“Like if some boys are playing a hunting game on TV and a girl walks up and says, ‘Can I play?’ and the boys say, ‘No, it’s for boys.’  It’s the same thing.”

We are waiting for the light to change and Will chimes in, “Maybe adults think kids can’t handle responsibilities because they are really worried that they aren’t handling responsibilities well.  Maybe the boys worry that the girls’ll be better at the hunting game?”


How do you two come up with this stuff?

Jen looked out the window and laughed, “It’s all pretty obvious, mom.”

Mar 14

To Whom It May Concern

You’ve fortified your boundaries.  You carry the cheat sheet in your bag.  Your backbone is stronger than it’s been in years.  You have a teetering stack of journals that proves the value of writing out your thoughts.  Most days you’ve moved so far beyond those old hurts that you can’t even remember the specifics. Continue reading →