I thought the meeting (after the argument) with our daughter about moving back home went really well. We came up with a list of boundaries and in the end, Arabella said she could work with the boundaries we laid out for her. She was talking a mile a minute and the thoughts in her head were swirling around faster than she could think them. She had two sheets of paper of scribbled up notes she wanted to discuss with us.
She trusts me again. Me, which is a lot of responsibility. She said she understands us now and we are not out to get her which has been a big improvement from where we were.
A couple days before Paul and Arabella had a fight about her selling images of herself online. Paul said he didn’t want her to do that kind of stuff under our roof. I agree with him, however I don’t feel as strongly about it as he does. We are taking her back at a low point after all. The last thing we want to do is control her. We did try before because she was a child. But now as an adult I don’t want to step in unless she or someone else is in danger. She wants to think of herself as an Instagram model and has plans to move to California when she is famous which according to her will be soon.
Maybe I don’t feel as strongly about it because porn has always been a part of my life. Maybe I’ve normalized it as a way to cope with it. I remember when I was 6 I got in trouble for showing a magazine to my cousin. Boy did I get in trouble. I think one of my brother’s might have taken a magazine to school. These are the images I saw as a young child and I wanted to grow up to look like that. That is a very hard standard to live up to especially as I age. I would be lying if I said that kind of material had no effect on me as I grew and developed.
As a very young child, my siblings and I had easy access to porn and we were curious. We looked at the images and as I got older I read the articles. (Yes, there were stories in the old time magazines). We watched some of my dad’s videos. My dad even gave some magazines to my brothers. This all happened while we were children. My mom turned a blind eye to it all and constantly preached to me about purity and waiting until marriage. She even bought me a purity ring. What a joke! It probably would’ve been more effective if she didn’t allow her children to be exposed to explicit material.
With the way I grew up, I find porn to be disgusting and repulsive. It’s a fight I can’t win in our culture. I understand that. But it was not something my kids had access to in my house from my husband or me. It sickens me to think about how big of a part it was in my childhood. It’s like having access to a loaded gun which we had access to too. I had to tell my parents to put away the loaded rifle behind the front door when I brought my young kids around. But that’s a story for a different day. It seems unbelievable how messed up my family is.
Things got worse with my dad. My daughter Angel and her now husband found child porn on my dad’s computer when he was fixing it. I am the daughter of someone who not only is addicted to porn, but to images with children. They went to the police, but nothing really ever happened with the case. My mom left for awhile but now is back and everything is going just great. What does that say to our kids? I’ll tell you what it says. Porn is acceptable. So why not make money off of it? There is no moral compass. No direction, no guidance, no support from the elders. It really makes me angry to think about how this addiction has destroyed my family of origin. It is an ugly and shameful addiction to the point of where my dad took it. I almost wish he was an alcoholic instead so I could go to meetings and get support.
With the exception of Arabella, who lived with my parents for awhile, my dad has not seen his other 4 grandchildren in over 3 years. This has been very confusing for my nieces who are younger. People always ask about my dad and it’s difficult. I have to give a bs excuse to why he isn’t involved. Most of the time I just tell people…no, he is not dead just sick very sick.
My husband’s boundary was to work towards more suitable employment. We want to try to help her out through this difficult time as she is breaking up with her boyfriend and moving out of the apartment they share. Little did we know that worse was on the way which makes this whole issue insignificant in comparison.