Tuesday, February 28, 2012

O is for Obnoxious, Opinionated and Obdurate

Not sure when this happened. Not certain it wasn't always there but hidden someplace in the recess of CM2's mind. But he is an absolute pain in the ass. He is obnoxious to a fault. His answers are self-righteous, know-it-all and condescending. He has a opinion on everything and once he has that opinion it is adhered to his person like a sucker fish attaches to a shark. Then he is obdurate, stubborn to the point of madness...mine not his. Bullheaded doesn't even begin to tell what this boys is like on a daily basis.

While I have regaled everyone with stories surrounding CM2's disdain for homework and his obsession with gaming, I generally have failed to mention the creeping attitude issues we have been experiencing as of late. Now yes, I do understand that having a strong personality is part and parcel of a very bright individual, but in CM2's case it has become something akin to being possessed by Satan's legion. I am waiting just waiting for his head to spin around 360* and for some satanic incantation to emerge from his mouth.

Today we were discussing Jewish history. He asked why it was good for God to free the Jews from bondage in Egypt, since Jews shouldn't be slaves, but it was then OK for Jews to make slaves out of the Babylonians. I had to explain to him that he got his facts wrong. I told him it was the Babylonians who centuries after leaving Egypt made slaves out of the Jews. In fact the Jews themselves didn't have slaves, per se, but were the slaves of every major Empire in the Middle East and Europe for thousands of years. (OK yes there was slavery, but the Bible is very explicit about how to keep slaves, basically making it financially unrealistic for anyone to own another human being. But I wasn't about to go into that with him at that moment in time.)

"Well," came his response," didn't they have prisoners of war, that is slavery."

"Prisoners of war, are prisoners of war, not slaves. That is very different things. I think you need to read a book about Jewish history."

"Oh and who says that there won't be an agenda in the book you give me?"

"it's like your history book for college. I have an entire library."

"What makes you think the facts are correct?"

"These are books written by respected historians."

"Oh and if the book said that Beethoven was an alien would that make the fact correct because its in your history book?"

"A respected history book wouldn't say that..." At this point I am shaking my head and trying not to start yelling.

"By the way," he adds, "you used the wrong tense of the verb." He then proceeded to tell me how I should have worded my last sentence.

"You need to go exercise now. Go get changed, " I quickly interjected, "You also didn't do your chores this afternoon." It is amazing that I don't need blood pressure medicine.

"I will after dinner."

He then left the room, and proceeded to go change to walk on the tread-climber. I also heard him talking about what an idiot I am and how I need to shut up and listen to him. All under his breath or so he thought. Lately he has taken to swearing at me to my face, which his father is none to pleased about. Those are very interesting  discussions between father and son when son is nasty to me,  to say the least.

His other latest fad is to tell us how we have controlled his life for the past 18 years and we weren't going to do it anymore. We weren't going to tell him what to do and how to do it. At that point hubby invited him to go live on the front lawn if he didn't like how things were done in the house. Hubby then continued of course, with the typical parentaleese about living in my house and following my rules.

I know hubby mentioned the front lawn, because he was afraid this child would just up and leave and go God knows where. We do know our obdurate, stubborn and bullheaded offspring. When he was little he decided he didn't like kindergarten and was gong to walk home. They caught him at the door as he was leaving. He told them he didn't like it there and he was going home where he was happy and that was final. I think it was at that point they really started to understand that he wasn't your typical child.

Now I know that this attitude is all sort of typical. I know that this is all normal. I know this is very adolescent and very teenage-like. I know that aspies mature later so we are definitely dealing with a 14 or 15 year old mindset in an 18 year old body. I know we went through this with CM1 and as he matured CM1 has turned into a delight (well for the most part). But it definitely is no fun gong through this again.

I will say though, there is a huge difference when CM1 went through this stage and CM2. CM1 when you told him the argument was over, it was over. He was told to move on to something else. He would leave you alone. He might obsess about the issue and lose sleep over it himself, but he would leave you alone. Not so with CM2.

CM1 doesn't like to be wrong. He doesn't like that he lost an argument. He doesn't like that you don't take his word or agree with his opinion. The emails begin to come. He searches the Internet for everything and anything that proves his point. He sends them continuously. What he doesn't like is when I send him articles and info to prove my point. Then even his email responses start to get obnoxious. Until finally he gives up by telling me I am hopeless.

Dealing with my child at this moment reminds me of the old saying about growing up: When I was 18 I couldn't believe how stupid my parents were, but by the time I was 21, I couldn't believe that they had learned so much.(well I am hoping that it ends for the most part by the time he is 21.)

I know that he will always be obdurate. Honestly it is one of the traits that will help him overcome some of his issues. When he puts his mind to something it gets done. Of course, his problem right now, is that the only thing he is being stubborn about is fighting monsters, zombies and aliens rather than reading his history book, writing his essays and preparing for tests.

Being opinionated also isn't a bad thing, unless you refuse to see the other side to an argument. Of course, not all arguments are worthy of  consideration, I am certain we will find no merit in the ideas of the 9/11 hijackers, virulent-America-haters, Nazis and those who support a new Holocaust against the State of Israel So in these situations there is some merit to obdurate opinions and his obnoxiously opinionated mindset will suit him just fine.

The late Daniel Patrick Moynihan, former senator from the State of New York once said, you may be entitled to your own opinion, but you are not entitled to your own facts. EEhhh, of course not everyone agrees with that statement either, or there wouldn't be so many people who make up their own facts to go along with their own opinions. Something does tell me too, that my know-it-all 18 year old has the propensity to be one of those fact-creating individuals.

Listen, parenting these children are a challenge on every level. It's doesn't ever change. But it does make life interesting. It's also why I buy the mega-huge bottle of Advil.

Until next time,

Awaiting the next batch of emails telling my why I shouldn't trust historians and their facts,


By the way, I did ask him where he got the idea that the Babylonians were slaves to the Jews rather than vice-versa. He told me he didn't remember. In other words, he didn't want to tell me what websites he has been reading. I asked him point blank if he was on very very very bad websites (You know the kind that masquerade as history sites but give out false hateful information. Found one of those myself today. Very cleverly disguised. Very evil.). He yelled at me NO.

I am going to check the history on his computer just to make sure. Nosey you bet..too bad.

UPDATE: Checked couldn't find anything. Next move. Have hubby talk to him. It could also simply be that he misinterpreted history too. We'll see.