Copyright© 2012 Angharad
All Rights Reserved.
I was distressed to learn that you were trying to deceive me regarding the growing of Cannabis sativa plants in the garden despite the fact that we have several children here who might be influenced by your and Chris’s behaviour regarding use of the drug obtained from the plants.
I have sympathy with the fact that you felt a need to consume the cannabis for pain relief, although I think that matter has since resolved itself.
As you are obviously in accommodation which was designed for wheelchair users, there would be little to be gained in moving from your current flat. I am therefore withdrawing the offer of the stable as accommodation.
It grieves me to renege on my previous offer but your behaviour has caused me to feel my children might be at risk from you and your partner, hence my withdrawal of the offer.
I showed it to Tom, Simon and Stella, they all countersigned it unbidden by me. I had explained the situation as we had found it on our visit and Julie was able to confirm everything I said. I think she felt as saddened by our discoveries as I did. We’d both known Jenny in happier days when she’d been a wonderful help to us all and it was a real shame to see her as she was. However, the fact that she was using illegal drugs, albeit for a possible legitimate use, made me apprehensive and to feel threatened for the children and their safety is my first priority.
In mitigation, she was the one who broke the trust of our relationship and continued to do things which were deleterious to it, so I felt I had little option but to rescind the offer. When I spoke to Julie on the return journey, she agreed with me. I thought she’d be more sympathetic to Jenny’s use of cannabis but she was very anti drugs. Apparently a girl she knew in school nearly died from using ecstasy and after that Julie saw drugs as dangerous as well as undesirable. If I could get her to see alcohol in the same light, I’d feel much happier when she was out with her friends.
So much of the trouble with teenagers—fights, stabbings, assaults, vandalism and suicide—is made worse by alcohol. I’m not against people drinking but when they do so in excess it annoys me. To see footage of young women staggering down the high street in very few clothes and sky high heels absolutely sozzled, makes me scared and angry in the same breath.
They are at risk of anything from falling and injuring themselves to being assaulted or robbed. If they do it regularly, they risk liver disease or diabetes as well as the dangers of falling or being assaulted. That they wear so few clothes isn’t an issue to me, nor are the shoes—we should be able to wear what we like.
Tom pointed an article in the Guardian. “Hae ye read this?”
I felt like saying, how could I, you pinch it as soon as it comes through the letter box, I just pay for it. Instead I actually said, “Read what?”
He handed me the paper and I read the article, it was by Philippa Perry who’s a psychotherapist and wife of the eccentric artist Grayson Perry, who accepted some national prize for art in his best party frock. It certainly gave the tabloids a good laugh. I admit I was taken aback by his attire, but only because I’d never heard of him or his art—he made some wonderful pot or other—let alone his cross dressing as a little girl.
Then he did a documentary and showed himself in all his personae and I felt hed probably be a nice chap to know, very clever and talented and his dresses are all hand made for him. His dress maker was on Woman’s Hour and she was very interesting and was obviously very fond of her eccentric client. He also studied in Portsmouth, so that has to make him okay to this family.
It might sound as if I’m judgemental, I try not to be, but to do as the article in the Guardian suggested, give the children space to experiment in who they want to be. I thought about Billie and felt pleased that that was what I was trying to do for her. I wasn’t entirely convinced she was classic GID, but at least I was trying to let her decide what she was. I think she appreciated the opportunity and enjoyed the bit of girlhood she had.
I wiped a tear from eye and went down to my study and saved the article in a file I have for useful articles on transgender/gender identity. Most of those in the press are sensationalist or pure bilge if not bile. But this one was good and I could agree with nearly every word of it. I went onto the Guardian website but the comments and the battle being fought by intransigents on both sides made me ill. I wanted to comment that they were making emotional arguments and all had so many axes to grind the sparks were blinding them to the facts or truth, but I gave up after several attempts. It’s pointless commenting to those with closed minds and the more reasonable you become, the less they accept it. Humans are strange creatures, I almost wish at times I were a dormouse, I’d be hibernating now not seeing this bitching in my favourite newspaper.
How can anyone with a functioning synapse accuse the Guardian of an agenda to promote propaganda for transsexualism? It’s ludicrous, but that’s people for you.
Apparently we make most decisions on emotional input not logic, looking at the comments on the website sure made that a very safe assertion to make.
Trish came down to see me with Livvie. “Is Jenny not coming to stay with us again, Mummy?”
“Um, sorry, girls, but no, I decided I didn’t want her here anymore.”
“But we liked her, Mummy, she’s nice.”
“The Jenny we had living with us and working with us was a nice person. Sadly her accident changed her—no, she changed as she left us, she stole from me and she planned to deceive me again. She’s unreliable in every sense of the word and I need to trust anyone who works with us or lives in this house.”
“But we could cure that, Mummy. We could change her back to what she was before.”
“We don’t have the right to make people what we want them to be, we have to accept their right to be who they believe they are. In doing so, we sometimes have to agree to disagree. Jenny has chosen her path, it’s not one that’s congruent or appropriate here any longer. She is no longer welcome in this house.”
“Woss conguent?” asked Livvie.
“Like the school we go to,” suggested Trish almost making me laugh out loud.
“That’s a convent, silly,” chided Livvie.
“It means matching or agreeing with things. So people who come here to work or stay have to fit in with the rest of us. They have to accept the rules of the house, which are mostly fairly relaxed. They also have to accept that the safety of you children is a priority, if they don’t they may be described as incongruous or not congruent.”
“See, told you it wasn’t like our school—nah,” Livvie said and poked Trish before running off with Trish in hot pursuit.
I sat quietly and looked at the photo of all my children and wept for the one I still missed.
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