He pissed in my cereal bowl a few weeks ago, brought it to me with a smile. Diabolical, was it? He slapped me because I wouldn’t let him drive the car. He hit my 6-year-old daughter and screamed in her face, spit on my hand, and kicked over all the freshly laundered, freshly folded clothes I’d stacked in the living room.
I remember when my daughter was this age, noticing parallels between our relationship and an abusive spousal one. She could be so violent, so mean. I could be so forgiving, so ready to take her back. She stepped on my feelings. I kissed her on her eyelids at bedtime and told her I loved her anyway. She pulled my hair in anger. I stroked hers as she slept. I sometimes secretly hated her, but not really. I couldn’t wait for her to take me back. I couldn’t wait to take her back.
My 2-year-old son pissed in my cereal bowl. (He’s potty training and thought it was a potty cup.) He slapped me because I wouldn’t let him drive the car. (Driving’s his favorite pretend-play game, and he’s learning self-control.) He hit my 6-year-old daughter and screamed in her face. (She was draping herself on his most prized posesssion, me.) He spit in my hand. (That’s what he does when he’s eaten something he knows he shouldn’t.) He kicked over all the freshly laundered, freshly folded clothes I’d stacked in the living room. (He can be a jerk.) Yup, that’s my son — my 2-year-old son. And I love him to pieces.