Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Still In the News

Talked to my parents this week.
"I was reading some old newspapers yesterday," my father said, mentioning some old news events.
I checked after and he was referring to events from 2000. So he must be reading newspapers that are over 13 years old.

This goes back to issues that I faced growing up. No newspaper was supposed to go out until he had finished readying it. When I was young, I would ask my mother about this and she would say, "Sometimes when he is at work at sneak out a few to the garbage."
It was so frustrating and ridiculous that between all of us, nobody could say that this was wrong and needed to stop. As time went by, not only did newspapers pile up, but also mail.

This isn't the only matter they avoid.
My parents are also sidestepping the issue of their own care. When I visited them last, my father finally gave in and granted that they were not functioning well on their own anymore. Despite asking me to look into independent care facilities, they have pushed off any information I provided, saying they would prefer go and live with my sister (in another state).
In talking to them, my folks don't bring up the issue of their care at all. So just before hanging up, I asked.
"We are going to visit your sister," he says, "but she has a lot of fixing up first."

I grew up with them making excuses. The house was cluttered and we didn't have visitors over, and they would repeatedly say, "the house is still cluttered because we are still moving in."
We had moved in 1979. That excuse persisted till I went to university.


  1. Why, why is it always newspapers?? What could they represent? Unfulfilled promises (to read them), some sort of ritual?
    When I go to my parents house I'm surrounded by them, you would laugh, you would see multiple adults standing to chat because the couch if full of newspapers, but no one has the courage to ask if we could move a stack to sit down. We are all trained monkeys and will stand in our designated standing spot.

    1. Good questions. I have not contemplated the deeper meaning. I felt that overall the hoarding practice was about control. Just like they couldn't sift through any junk mail, they also felt that every newspaper had to be read thoroughly.