David and I are still getting along. I hope that is not about to change. For some reason money is just falling out of his bank accounts. He had promised to keep a minimum balance of $400 (which was the amount that he got in a gift), but he is $40 below that. I talked to Ruby about it. Since I am a co-signer on his accounts we decided that I should closed down all his accounts. Tonight I will give him 83 cents and, with permission from Ruby, all of his reimbursement money (she may insist that $40 of that go to paying back the gift money he spent).
I plan on not reprimanding him *at all* for his financial situation. I am only going to tell him that I found out that in order for him to establish is own accounts he is 18 we had to close down the joint accounts...so I went ahead and did that for him. I will tell him that since I was unclear on the terms of the gift money I sent that into the agency's office so they could figure out when he was supposed to have it.
How'd it go?
It turned out that he had tried to transfer funds and found out his accounts were gone. He had called his worker yesterday during the day to report that we had stolen his money and he wanted someone to pick him up and move him now. They told him to wait until he had a chance to talk to me about what happened. Maybe there was some sort of explanation for it.
Ruby had called me before I got home to warn me and told me that it was important that David not get angry at us and so I should put all the blame on her. He was already not speaking to her. If there was any chance that he was going to stay he had to maintain his relationship with me.
I honestly hate not taking responsibility, but I did it. I blamed her for everything.
I think I am glad that I did. He was furious.
"Ruby better never show her face around me. She better not show up at our meeting tomorrow."
"David, she is required to be there."
"Well, she better not expect me to be nice to her."
When Ruby called me she said to send her $40 of the reimbursement money to bring what they were holding back to $400. I gave him the other $40. He pulled another $40 out of a pocket and put it all in his wallet. They told him that the bank said that he needed $100 to start a checking account. I asked if he wanted me to come up with some work he could do for us for the last $20. He said no. Then he pulled out his phone and called someone. I think it was Robert. David did not even say hello to whomever it was:
"I need $100 on Monday."
"Because I do."
“Because I do.”
“Because I do.”
"Because I have to start up a checking account."
"Because I don't have one now!"
It was disturbing to watch him do that. David spent all evening in his room.
When Hubby told him dinner was ready he said he did not feel like eating. (If he were angry at us he would not have answered.)
So here is what I am thinking right now...
When David was little he had to deal with people who were genuinely awful. He survived by classifying the world into good guys and bad guys. The good guys treated him well and were safe. The bad guys hurt him he closed himself off completely—walked away and never looked back if he could. This strategy protected him. He continued through his childhood being basically a good kid -- meeting nearly all expectations and being rewarded by the approval of all the good guys. Anyone who disappoints him though is a bad guy.
There is no grey in his world, no compromise. The good guys do what he wants/expects. Bad guys don't. He seems to be completely unable to understand someone else's perspective.
After all this I went downstairs to talk to the boys again. I asked them to pause the video game. "I want to remind you that David could move out after he turns 18. You should know that he really might do it."
"Because he is really angry at the agency and doesn't like following their rules."
"Will you be okay with that?"
"Yeah." Pause. "Do you have to tell me anything else?"
"Okay...because I am about to kill Andrew's monster!"
I think the boys will be okay.
Okay...nobody out there ask me why we didn't handle the money in any number of other ways. I no longer understand it myself.
Oh, by the way, Lisa was going to be David's new social worker. She had previously worked in the independent living program. Ruby was transitioning into a diffeent position at the agency.
David's Story Part 1: The Beginning
David's Story Part 45: Meeting with the counselor