Maybe we do need to institute some sort of psychological test before we unlock peoples’ reproductive capacity. My ex-wife has never been able to relate to her children. Her infrequent trips into town while they were growing up always ended in disaster and were followed up by an even more disastrous and toxic post-visit email or phone call in which she would berate my daughter for not appreciating the splendor that is her adult-child, mentally ill, narcissistic, intrusive, demanding, entitled, and socially inept self.
We are in the middle of the latest visit – well, it was supposed to be the middle, but things have been falling apart since day one on Monday and now the wicked witch of the East has managed to find a broom that’s leaving town tomorrow instead of her originally scheduled Friday departure.
Who comes to town to visit their single-mother daughter who has two children and expects her to buy all the food and keep her alcoholic self in wine? Not much wine, only a bottle a day.
Who comes to town and tells their daughter that she can’t stand to be around her grandchildren for much more than a hour before she needs a break?
Years ago I had a conversation with an Internal Medicine doctor who was initially a Psychiatry Resident when he changed to Internal Med. He said that he always thought there should be a diagnosis in the DSM (the Bible of psychology in which all of the diagnostic criteria are listed) called “A$$hole.” I laughed at the time, because I knew I agreed. My children can offer up a poster child.
The sad thing is that mentally ill people can do very well and have decent relationships if they will take their medications and participate in a meaningful way in therapy. When they don’t, well…if you see a broom flying from Milwaukee to Florida tomorrow, you’ll know who it is.