Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Families

Saturday Paul’s parents came to pick up him and his sister and take them back to St. Louis. I might be wrong, but I had the weirdest suspicion that Paul wanted his parents to know that I spend the night at his place. They were supposed to arrive around noon. I had an errand to run and thought that they would probably have arrived before I was finished. Paul told me I didn’t have to leave, because his parents wouldn’t be weird about me having stayed the night. I explained that it wasn’t to avoid weirdness that I was leaving, but because I wanted to get the errand taken care of in the morning, because the place would probably close before we were finished having lunch. As I left, Paul then told me to just use my set of keys instead of ringing the doorbell when I came back. I got the impression that he liked the idea of letting his parents see that I stay over and have keys to his place.

Maybe I should have offered to walk out of the shower with just a towel wrapped around my head to make it clear that their little boy is in a relationship with a woman.

Unlike my own mother, all of my friends’ or boyfriends’ parents very much like me, and Paul’s were no different. Apparently I am cute, smart and so nice. They kept saying things like ‘when you come visit us in Missouri....’ They did refrain from measuring my hip bones or birth canal, but his mom did take pictures of together to ‘put on her desk at work’. She mentioned that everyone else has wedding pictures or cute grandkid pictures, so now she’ll have something to show, too. Yikes. I’ve heard the same sort of lament from my mom, too. I guess this parental weirdness is only going to get more obnoxious as I get older.

His parents are nice, but Paul was mostly dreading the boring weirdness he expected at his weekend home with his family. This trip has sparked lots of conversations about our families.

I’ve known it for a long while, but my family is weird. The brothers are great, but my parents’ household is just weird. Explaining it to a person I date is not fun. I want to adequately convey the craziness, but try to avoid bitching too much or making them wonder if I might really be a freak show. It is a fine line to walk. Luckily we just kept laughing as I described the five cats, the tapes of soap operas, the corn, the dog, the cherubs, the junk, the mess, the decorating, the petty fights and pure dysfunctional weirdness of my parents’ house. After we stopped giggling, he decided that while his parents house was boring, his parents were actually normal and a pretty good deal. I guess that is something good about my mom: she makes other mothers seem sane and reasonable.

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