Paranormal Parenting

When people think of single parents lots of them will think firstly about how tough it is and it is. You are responsible for all the decisions. There’s no-one to chew things over with. No-one to bear half the brunt of the tantrums and the arguments. On the flip side of that you don’t have to share any of the good stuff.

My oldest and I were on our own on and off for the majority of his first fifteen years. It was me and him against the world. We were a team. We also had a huge amount of fun.

When the film Paranormal Activity first came out my son nagged me to death to be allowed to watch it, he was 7 years old. Apparently all his friends had watched it and they were fine and the only person who had a mean mother was him. I stood my ground in the face of a child with the persistence of a seagull at the seaside.  A few years later it was on the TV and it started all over again. Weeks this went on. Weeks of being the only person who was nagged incessantly and without mercy.

It was time for my son to learn a valuable life lesson. The last time he asked me if we could watch it I said yes, he was 10 years old at this point, he puffed out his chest and laughed in the face of this scary film. Like this film was even going to bother him. Pah.

We settled down to watch it. He had been sitting at the end of the sofa but over the twenty minutes the film had been on he had gotten closer and closer to me and was now sitting practically on my lap and a cushion had appeared in front of his face. “I don’t like it. I don’t want to watch anymore” he announced. “Well that’s tough” I said “You nagged to have this film on and now I’m watching it”. Then he asked me to turn it off and I explained that I was watching it and that if he didn’t want to watch it anymore then he could go to bed. He was too scared to go to bed on his own. “Then the only choice you have is to stay down here and watch this with me”. His ideal scenario by this point was that we switch the film off and go to bed together so I could protect him as by this point my brave ten year old son was shitting bricks. I made him watch that film right to end and when he started sobbing I shushed him as I couldn’t hear what the voice on the videotape of the woman being thrown around violently by an invisible entity was saying.

After that he didn’t ask me if could watch any scary films again and I let him sleep in my bed that night. I’m not completely evil. I may have said “did you hear that?” after I’d turned the light off but I stopped messing around when he started crying.

I didn’t say I wasn’t evil I said I wasn’t completely evil.

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