Father & Son. Family Time.

It was a line from a movie. I think.

It was in one of the last few movies that I watched. I think.

I searched, and searched, and searched trying to find the source. The Source, damn it. What was the source?

No luck.

But it goes something like this.

Father talking to Mother about 20-something Son. “I see so much of him in me, but he’s a better version.”

I grab my iPhone and send Mom and Son a text.

The same Son whose hand is never far from his iPhone. Texting, and Texting and Texting his Friends.

Yet…he rarely replies to any of my texts.  And, almost never, no let’s say, Never, replies to any of my emails that I flip to him that I’m sure would be of interest. Who does email anymore Dad?

He stays far enough away, but not too far away from the hand that pays for his Data Plan every month. The same AT&T Data Plan that sends his Father the itemized bill with a line by line detail of the hundreds (thousands?) of texts that he sends to Others every month.

And, This, irritates me.

But I digress. Back to the Text I sent to him and his Mother.

Watching movie. Father talking to Mother about 20-something Son and says: “I see so much of him in me, but he’s a much better version.”

I continue with a follow-up text.

“I’ve thought about it. I don’t see anything that is better. Don’t see a single thing that I could point to.”

I sit.

And I wait.

5 seconds.

10 seconds.

And here it comes.

The iMessage ellipsis, the dot-dot-dot, pause, and dot-dot-dot-pause. He’s typing.

I smile.

Here comes the message.

“Are you insane?”

And then another…

Where do I even start?”

And another….

“If bipolar mood swings from rage to total disinterest constitute better, you are DEFINITELY better. SO MUCH BETTER.”

And another…

Your compulsive addictions from gadgets, to gelato, to recently…donuts…YOU ARE SO MUCH BETTER.”

I don’t reply.

I set my iPhone down.

And lean back on the couch, close my eyes and smile.

Damn, that felt so good.


Image: Natalia Evelyn Bencicova via this isn’t happiness


  1. Not sure I’m understanding what’s going on here, but if you’re smiling, I’ll smile with you. 🍩

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Always have to poke the bear, don’t ya, pal?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. And you get what he’s saying to you…grab that kid and hug him for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You have absolutely no idea how much, a lot of much-es, I get that. Did I mention how much? A lot. More than much…..

    Liked by 2 people

  5. You’re all you, he’s half Susan. That’s what’s better.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sitting back, smiling, reminiscing …my son is finally over that hump. Now I get “You K mom?” and no bill for the data plan. Better.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. 😁


  8. So so good. My son to a “T”. And still I love him to death.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. No matter what they say or do, or do not say and do not do, they need to know we care and love them. I know this is true after decades of closeness…and alternate non closeness. Must say, the breakthoughs are so cherished. Your son is probably in that “stage” of shutting out the parents while figuring out who and what he is–he may not be there for awhile, but you can be there (THERE) (first for yourself). He obviously doesn’t have the wherewithal to be fully present to you…for now. Love quietly and patiently and mention when appropriate, I love you! Reflecting from your share: parentling is a lifelong activity…………………..

    Liked by 1 person

  10. i’ve been there and it takes a long time and a lot of their life experience for them to begin to see the bigger picture – mine now say, ‘oh, that’s why…’

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Oh boy, you’re still a ‘beginner’ on father-son interaction, my friend….
    And it works absolutely just as well with Hero Husband! (And that’s really, really, frigging upsetting this woman here!)
    I’m sending mails too, I also send WhatsApp chats, but I might as well talk to my fridge or wall – and believe me, I do! NOW that son has taken the 40yrs curve, he SOMETIMES chooses to come back with a reply, feed-back, a message or some pics of his own doing, but don’t get your hopes up – it might be temporary!
    My son never asked money from his parents, he’s a proud guy – but him as my husband don’t consider mails or messages as something one should to reply to – I am (still) at my wits end and I despair – or get pxxxd off – so be HAPPY and thankful that you got ONE feedback….
    My son also knows full well that – whatever – I will always treasure him and love him. I just had to cut back my hopes and expectations. With Hero Husband it’s more complex and less easy to accept. But I’m working on it 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Relax... says:

    “Mood Swings and Gelato” — excellent name for a band, OR for a Dad’s memoir book title.. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I am SO with you on this one! I even read to my 19-year old 😉 Who smiled… because he, unlike his 21-year-old brother actually almost always answers my texts. And even throws in an “I love you” (ok, he might want something, but still.) By the way, whilst youngest is on my cell plan, it’s ONLY because I have my late husband’s business plan and he gets a better price – which he pays for, coz I refused to buy them a cell nor pay for any service. I’m mean like that.
    Now… as to your son’s response, of course you smiled. You now know he actually reads what you write to him 😉
    I’m still shaking my head and sorta laughing because you and your son is EXACTLY me and my eldest son…

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Deep down, they all want connection with us whether it’s by email, text or snap chat or whether it’s from an annoying father that eats donuts, or a nagging Mum who tells her daughters to keep grounding their energy!! 🙄 Glad he replied 👏

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Young people are weird, not a new thing, young people have always been weird, just saying

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I do remember that it wasn’t that long ago, that you started dropping hints to Eric & he relocated back to home! There is an undeniable strong bond…He did cradled your head that was laying in coagulated blood on the bathroom floor when he stepped into the familiar role of being the first responder, thankfully… Also wonder, regarding Rachael ordering a pup…initially you tried to persuade her to rethink that situation and then you came to accept that she’d made a decision…I think you mentioned that she would pick up her pup in February? Has this happened? Have you and Susan fallen in love with the pup if she has picked up the new Joy? You and Susan are well loved by your children… PS geesh I lost my train of thought regarding Eric…perhaps it will come to me later…oh, he and Susan crafted a snowman last year – a tribute of love to you and I do remember Eric classic Joyful smile…

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Hahaha nicely and true facts written. Same like father who says that today and life has been taken over by so much social media no one talks to anyone and only biting and snarling words that come out from mouths. Do not disturb us.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Anonymous says:

    Oh, in I think the past year you wrote about Eric and you mentioned some lyrics similar to the good parts of Cat’s in the Cradle not the sad part…and you said he’d grown up better than you in some regards…and I think you misread my earlier comment, didn’t mean Susan and a pup I meant Rachel – did she end up getting a pup?

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Two things spring to mind…
    After I got clean from dope and my son moved in with me and started trying to get clean himself, we had a bit of a fight.
    At some point, in anger , I said to him ‘You have no idea what its like living with an addict”
    You should have seen his face.
    He managed to kick heroin, but lately has had trouble keeping the bottle out of his mouth.
    He told me last week while we were having oysters that he had stayed sober for 6 weeks now.
    I’ve learned the less I say, the better. God forbid I bring it up.
    Anything I say beyond “That’s nice to hear, pass the horseradish” is like a punch in the gut to him.
    Which I get. He’s just like me.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Ohgosh. Adult children. A wholly unique ballgame. Or chess game. And the field – or is it board – keeps on changing. It’s a dance, for sure. 🙃

    Liked by 1 person

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