Select Page


It’s only a matter of time before it happens.

It might be in a tweet.

Or an email to one of the kids’ teachers.

Or at the end of a post.

Or in a comment on another writer’s blog.

Or in a memo to parents.

Or in a letter note to the pastor

Most likely it will be in a text.

Yeah, that’s the most likely, in a text, and without appropriate relational context, like to a parent of a kid spending the night over with one of mine.

It’s really a more a question of when, not if.

Cuz I’m the mother who already accidentally hit Reply All instead of Reply and thanked The Husband, “For the most sweet and gentle of kisses,” to all the parents in The Boy’s then third-grade class.

And I’m the mother who drove to the wrong soccer field twice in the same week.

I’m also the mom who misquotes her own children’s birth dates at the doctors office.

So, now that I have adopted the “xoxo” as part of my email closing to intimates, it’s simply a matter of time.

In order to save time, may I preemptively say:

xoxo to the kids’ principal.
xoxo to the lawn care service that sent us a job quote.
xoxo to the mom who wrote for help with the fencing car pool.
xoxo to the volunteer coordinator.
xoxo to the grocery store credit card slip.
xoxo on the kindergartener’s reading log.
xoxo on the field trip permission form.
xoxo on the Friday folder.


Ask The Band: Are My Parents Bullying Me?

Every Friday, Band Back Together runs an advice column, in which our (wise) readers help you answer the questions you need answered.

You can even do this anonymously. 

Now let’s get our advice on:

I know this may seem weird or stupid, but I think my parents are bullying me.

Let me explain why I believe they are bulling me.

The whole situation began about two years ago.

(Background: I am a 23 year old who loves technology.)

To attempt to cut a long story short, our house used to be filthy; and I mean filthy. How filthy? Well, there was actual black mold growing on walls. And with that mold, came mold mites, tiny white mites feeding on my technology.

So I went in to a panic and cleaned, sanitised, and vacuumed my stuff and desk. I wrapped anything that I wasn’t using into sealed bags: I did NOT want these buggers on feeding on my things.

Since that incident I think that I’ve developed OCD, although I’ve not been medically diagnosed, but now I clean my stuff everyday, in perpetual fear of mites.

I explained this to my family and they know why I’ve developed OCD. They have witnessed the mites. And I’ve asked that they do not let anyone near my room or stuff.

But for the past two years, they keep saying I am unwell, or I need to see a doctor. Like this is my fault.

My parents also put filthy items on my desk despite that I’ve asked them not to. They’ll also move my stuff around or put it on the dirty carpet

My OCD has gotten worse due to my parents interfering and I think they’re doing it just to get a reaction from me. Once I blow up, they blame me and call me “crazy.”

I just don’t know what to do anymore: I feel depressed and alone. I’ve really starting to think they are right. Maybe I am crazy.

I should also note: my fiancee says it’s my family that’s causing me to clean more due to their interference.


Sometimes, It Hurts More Than It Should

I’m lonely.

I’m really lonely.

Yet I’m married, have four amazing kids and a dog. Yet, I am so lonely that it sometimes feels like my chest will explode.

I used to have friends.  I used to be the life of the party.  I was always the one that did the crazy stunts or stayed up for two days drinking and having a good time.  I used to have a great marriage, and the kids and I always had fun and went and explored.

But then I lost everything.

Money, cars, my house, my mobility, my health.  I became disabled in September of 2005.  I won’t go into all the boring details but let’s just say that I will be lucky to be able to walk in a few years, even if the rate of progression stays slow like it is now.

I lost almost every friend.

People I had always been there for.  People I loved, loaned money to, made soup for when they were sick, gave a shoulder to cry on, etc.  Yet, at a pretty steady pace, all these people no longer cared about me.  I could no longer party, no longer stay up late, no longer hike or camp with them, no longer go on long car rides.  So they replaced me or just stopped calling.

Yet I could have still had a glass of wine with them or played video or board games; shit man I even knit.  Yet it wasn’t good enough.  And like a fool, I called, emailed, texted and IM’d all of them all the time.  No response.  Instead, I torture myself by reading their Facebook posts.  I see the pictures of them having fun and hanging out, hugging and laughing.  I see them interacting and carrying on like I never existed.  It hurts.  It hurts so bad that I cry a few times a week as I look at the pictures and see the joy in their face.

But what about my wife you say?

My wife has since become a roommate.  She has had a long term affair with another man and acted like it was no big deal when I found out.  She is never home and leaves me here with the kids all day every day.  She can go three or four days without saying more than a single word to me and the kids.  I’ve been with her since I was 17 years old.  I’m now 33.  So that makes the heart hurt worse, the tears burn a bit more and the darkness just that little bit thicker.

The kids, four boys who I live and would die for, try and understand.  They don’t, and I don’t want them to know it all.  It would scare them.  They don’t get why I can’t give them piggy back rides, wrestle with them or just sit on the floor and play.  So they aren’t around much.  They go to my mom’s house to play over there, go to their friends’ house, or sit in their rooms and play games on the computer.  They see the pharmacy on my night stand and see me cry out in pain. They’ve seen me fall down and they’ve seen me in the hospital.

And that, my invisible internet friends? That makes it all hurt so much more than anything that’s ever been done to me.

I sit here day after day.  I look out the same window and wonder what other people are doing.  I wonder if my name ever comes up in conversation or if people see old pictures of me and ask what happened to me.

I wonder if I will ever have somebody to sit with and tell them how I feel? Someone I can cry to and explain my fears to. Someone I can laugh with, and for just a minute forget what my life has become.  Someone who will hold my hand, or brush a stray hair from my cheek or maybe a rouge tear or two, or many.

I want to feel again.  I want to smile and laugh.  I want to feel wanted and appreciated and not cold and angry.

So, I sit here.  I write these words.  Maybe a person or two will read this.  In the end though, none of my old friends will read this. None of them will realize how bad they’ve hurt me.  My wife will never change, and it’s too late for that anyway. The divorce papers are sitting in my sock drawer, waiting to be signed.

I never would have thought that the final years of my cut-short life would be spent in such physical and emotional pain.  I never knew that loneliness would seem like it’s killing me faster than any disease and disability could.

This is just me venting.  This is a great way to express what I really feel, without having to keep it all bottled up.  If I had to keep this bottled up, it would drive me down, it would pull me under.  I can’t let that happen. I have to be able to find small joys in life, like singing to the kids, making fun of Jenny McCarthy, and just living life to the best of my ability!

I love this site and the writers on here.  You all are amazing people, and Aunt Becky is my hero!

(ed note: I love you. I’m glad you wrote this out. We’re all here for you. xo, AB)

I Give Up

This shell of mine is cracking.
I try to hide it under duct tape
But that’s no longer working.
I can’t take another setback,
Another failure,
Another rejection.

I think I have suffered enough.
I deserve to be happy
To be loved
To be surrounded by people who cheer me on
Not tear me down.

Yet life does not agree with me.
It says that I don’t matter
Unless someone needs something:
A Worker
A detective/private investigator
A babysitter
A human punching bag.

Life says that I am not good enough.
That I will never be anything more than what I am.
That I am beating my head into a brick wall.
That I should wake up and see that the shitty life I live–
Is all I’m worth.

Life says that my lot in life is to be alone
To watch others have all the fun, joy peace, happiness.
To hide away from the world–ignored and unaccepted.

Sadly, I’ve grown tired of fighting life.
My head is pretty battered from the beating it has taken.
I have chosen to give up,
To silently and quickly murder my dreams
And play alone with the dark shadows of my mind.

A Story That’s No Longer Mine

I proposed in 1996.

He’d always said, “If you get the ring,  I’ll say yes. ”

I did, he did.

We did in September 1997. We’d been together for 3 years already. We were a good couple, we were happy. I knew his bipolar disorder was manageable, I knew we could conquer anything.

Years passed, new home, new jobs, a lot of loneliness. He worked swing-shift which is not good for a relationship or anyone with mental health disorders.

This is where it is no longer my story…I had an affair, I left him, albeit amicably. We remained friends, he kept it, “in the family” in a round about sort of way.

They had a kid, So did me and my new husband. We spoke on occasion, kept in touch via family.

We each moved forward.

2018, a lot of suicide, celebrities, local people, friends of friends. I thought I should check-in with him but I didn’t.

Time and time again, I didn’t.

I awoke one morning to my husband asking if I knew anyone in a certain neighborhood there’d been a major tragedy.

I did.

I waited until I got to work.

I texted my ex, “What’s your mom’s address?” No response. “Hello?” No response. Messenger dings, My ex sister-in-law. “Can you talk?” I told her that I was at work.

The words:

“His mental illness got the best of him, he did the unthinkable, he killed A, he killed B, he killed C, and A, he took his own life.”

My past destroyed in one night.

He left a child parentless

I have spoken to the child.  We connected.  I have nothing bad to say about the child’s father.

I loved him, always. We were good together. We grew apart.

I feel I could have helped had he just reached out to me.

He didn’t.

Today 11/15 is his Birthday, I wish him peace on the other side. I know he fought his demons, I know they over ran him in the end.

I still love him, he’s my past, I will, as always, hold him close to my heart.

There were 4 victims that night.

All of them fell victim to Bipolar Disorder, a failing system, and a lack of understanding from those around the one suffering the most.

Today, I will light a candle for your Birthday,

You are missed. You will always be missed.

I will always remember you.

Happy Birthday, RIP, DLP.