I have recently stopped talking to my so called best friend again. I say so called, because although she claimed to be my friend, the shit that has happened between us this time shows that she was never my friend.
She recently had to go to Sydney for a conference, and invited me to come. I get to see my husband for about 8 seconds a day, so rather than do that, I offered her that we look after her son, our godson. We hardly ever get to see him, so it was really exciting. I even took a day off work, which for me is a big thing, and organised to have him for 3 full days. Terrifying prospect for people that arnt parents, but she kept assuring me it was fine, it would be easy.
When she left, she told me there were nappies if we needed them, but he was pretty well toilet trained if you put him on the toilet. I got up at 7am and drove her to the airport, and thus started my solo babysitting.
First stop,macdonalds, because it was raining slightly and they have indoor playgrounds. He had been in the car for a little while so I took him to the toilet. Trying to get him to let me pull his pants down to put him on the toilet was a nightmare. He was perfectly normal one second, then shrieking the next! Alas, I perservered, and we got there. We had a play in the playground ( I fell while we were leaving, ended up black bruised on my tailbone!) and went home.
Home was the same story when I tried to get him to use the toilet, but worse. I tried offering him bribes (that’s how his mum said to do it) and gave him a Lolly but he refused. Then he refused to put the training Nappy back on. Luckily I won that battle because I was envisaging a world of poo.
Anyhoo, long story short, it was kind of like that all weekend, only worse in parts. At the zoo he screamed in the toilets like we were beating him, and screamed for his mummy. Only on the toilets though, everywhere else he was perfect, cuddly (which was nice, the last few times we have looked after him he was being more of a boy, lots of high 5’s) and lovely, despite getting up at 4am one morning (and staying awake until late afternoon!!)
We had a great, albeit challenging weekend, the kid survived happy, although had spent most of the weekend in nappies, because he would not use the toilet. The few times he did we clapped and cheered (he was adorable – “I’m doing it, I’m doing it!” But these were few and far between.
2 days after all this, I got a HUGE email from my Friend about how his toilet training was deliberately missed by us, how we had psychologically damaged him by letting him use his nappy, deliberately gone against her parenting wishes, and messed him up.
This devistated me. Like catatonically crying in the corner because I couldn’t process the reality, only that I had hurt a child from my actions.
My husband, always the voice of reason, read through the email, got angry, not upset, and calmed me a little. The next day I spoke to half the parents I knew, all who reassured me that we hadn’t done anything wrong, that kids who are toilet training often have setbacks when they are in strange places, strange routines, one of them said a weekend trip away set them back a month with their second child. My boss was the best “did the child die – no, did you feed him – yes, was he happy? Yes? If anyone would have taken my kids for 3 days and they came back unbroken and happy, I would have been Amazed!!”
We have done nothing since this child was born but shower him with love, we did nothing for the weekend but do the same. He had our full, undivided attention for 3 days, and, although there was a few ‘I miss mummy’ moments, he seemed really happy.
Then to get screamed at about the toilet training issue like we a) never tried and b) were some kind of child abusing monsters (she actually wrote in a later email that she questioned her own parenting for leaving her child with such monsters) is not just Ungreatful, it’s cruel.
I would never and have never harmed a child, especially this child. It is one of the most awful, evil things anyone has ever said to me, especially following my conversations with other parents, young and old, all who say we did everything we could.
As much as I will miss her friendship, and his, well, everything, I can not see her again. This is an awful, cruel and unwarranted accusation that broke my heart and there is no coming back from that. I can’t help occasionally sending texts when I know stuffs hard, but I’m going to stop that if I can too, she will never come to me and say ‘listen, I’m sorry, toilet trainings just been hard and this set back was a
Shock, I know you did all you could’, she doesn’t believe in apologizing and says she never says anything she doesn’t mean. So when she hurts you, you just need to get over it and move on, and in this case that will NEVER happen.
Now I have to find a way to stop letting my anger about the things she said eat away at me and just move on completely. I’m hoping this little rant will go a long way to starting that process. 6 months ago