By A. Hosack, P. Berman K. Hecht
I am proud of him. He’s growing up to be a kind person.
Claire woke up the next day with a smile on her face. She had dreamed about Davy and his conversation with Mr. Carson about cats. She was so happy to think that he was growing up and learning from his experience. While changing his mind about cats wasn’t the biggest decision in the world, it did reflect that he was learning to stop and think. This reminded her for some reason about Craig.
I want my son to grow up to be a man like Mr. Carson. Someone who is kind and thoughtful. Someone who can be angry without being violent. When I think about Craig, how will he be able to tell if he is more like Mr. Carson or more like Larry? He did look a little angry or impatient when he first started talking to her and she didn’t answer. Was this because she’d been rude? Was it her fault if he was angry or impatient?
I need to discuss this with Mrs. Carson. How do I judge if Craig is a good or bad person?
Claire rushed down the stairs to find Davy and Mr. Carson eating breakfast and Mrs. Carson about to put out a plate for her. “Can I talk to for a minute in the living room,” Claire said. “Mommy, why can’t you just talk right here?” Davy curiously. “Davy this is grown-up business and your business right now is to eat breakfast and get ready for school.” “This cereal is really good mommy, make sure you have some,” said Davy going back to eating; his bowl was full of berries- his favorite kind of fruit.
Mrs. Carson was very curious about what Claire wanted to say. She sat down on the living room couch and looked at Claire who didn’t quite know how to start the conversation.” Finally, she just blurted out, “I met this young man named Craig on the bus last night, “Claire said, “I don’t know how to tell if I should encourage him to talk to me today or if I should try to avoid him.”
“How did you meet him, “Mrs. Carson said. “He sat next to me on the bus and just began talking, “Claire said, “I was surprised at first and didn’t know what to do in this did seem to irritate them a little bit.” “When you say he was irritated, what exactly did he do,” Mrs. Carson asked. “It was just his tone of voice change just a little bit, and there was a flash of something in his eyes,” Claire said which made me nervous that he might be like Larry. Larry used to get these flashes of anger in his eyes.”
Oh no, please let my Claire not get involved with another violent man.
(One-minute silence) “I’m glad you’re thinking this through to see if Craig is a safe person or not,” Mrs. Carson said calmly, “what happened next?” “The flesh left his eyes and he reached out his hand and said that he guessed he should’ve introduced himself and that’s when he told me his name was Craig. I told him my name was Claire and then he smiled at me,” Claire said softly with a smile.
“I can tell by the look on your face Claire, that you’re feeling happy at this moment.” “Well, Craig didn’t grab my arm or touch me in any way. He seemed to think for a minute and then he introduced himself. Larry would never have done that. It made me feel relieved that may be he wasn’t like Larry. He wasn’t somebody who thought it was all right to hurt me. “
“I do think this is a good sign, that he didn’t touch you Claire. But I think it’s a good idea to start out cautiously. If you’d met them at work, and you known him for a while, you would’ve had a chance to observe him many times when he might be frustrated or angry. This would give you more information about whether he was a safe person or not.” “That makes sense Mrs. Carson, but I met him on the boss and the only thing I know is that he said he worked at a bank.”
“It’s smart of you to thought of that,” Mrs. Carson said. “If you see him again on the bus, maybe you should ask him more questions to learn more about him. You need to learn things that you could check out to make sure they’re true. One of the ways to know that he might be a good person to have a relationship with, is if he’s honest.”
“Thank you Mrs. Carson, you have given me some good ideas (Claire sighed). I think I know what to do today if I meet him on the bus.”
Claire needed help and Mrs. Carson gave her ideas to try out.
Have you ever gone to an older adult for advice?
There is evidence that just spending time with older adults can help you. To learn about this go to:
This blog tells the fictional story of Claire and her son Davy; it will give you a window into Claire’s thoughts, feelings, and behavior. The people in this blog were created by Dr. Pearl Berman based on her thirty years of experience in the field of child abuse, neglect, sexual abuse, and exploitation. If there are any similarities between the people discussed in the blog, and actual people who are living or deceased this is coincidental. To catch up on old posts or start from the beginning you can find Claire's Story at https://pearlsberman.com/blog