Thursday, July 06, 2006

Evan's Story Part 3: First Meetings


We met Evan last night and he seems to be a very nice, mature young man. He is very anxious to please us, which makes it difficult to be certain. Still, he is working hard in a summer program (learning to cook) and is very aware of the limited time he has to become independent. We can only let him visit for 14 days before he moves in. That would allow him to stay the weekends before we leave and then unofficially move in as soon as we get back.

His boyfriend lives a couple of blocks from us. Do you think that had anything to do with him asking his social worker about us?

Evan would be here for the entire year. He will graduate next May.

Evan is here now playing video games with the boys. He was very impressed with his room when we brought him in -- it is bigger than he is used to.

Right now he has very little -- a week's worth of clothes, toiletries, and a couple of little things. Most of his possessions are still in his mother's possession. The police escorted him to his house so that he could get things. They could not go in with him, and when he came in the place had been trashed by the boyfriend; broken glass everywhere. I don't know how much time the police were willing to spend waiting for him, but apparently he just got a very few things. H&W are trying to get things for him, but they have warned him that it is likely that they will not. So all those things that an nearly 18 year old who has worked a couple of summers would have (iPod, computer, music, sports equipment, stuff...) is gone. I do hope that he gets some of it back.

If he doesn't I will ask the agency to give me a larger than usual budget for clothes and some budget for normal teenage things.

Evan had a tough day yesterday.

I told him when he got home that he got a call from his sister. I asked if he wanted to call her back. "She's with my mother, so, no." "The caller ID box says, 'XXX.'" Evan was stunned and hurt. "She's using his name? That's the name of the boyfriend that hit me."

Shortly after that he called "Brett" and they broke up. Brett is closeted and Evan is not. Evan living in Our Small Town put a lot of pressure on things. Evan thinks Brett should just come out; Brett is afraid. I spent about half an hour sitting with Evan in his room handing him tissues and patting him.

When he got himself pulled together he asked if it was going to be a problem for us to get him to his internship (15 miles away). Would we be able to take him to school (Brett had previous said he would drive him). Could we help him with his IEP? Would we go to his graduation from the summer program?

I reassured him about everything, but I know he is reassessing moving to Our Small Town. I don't think he is going to ask for a different placement, but he does need to reform the picture of what living here is going to be like. That's good.

The visit with Evan went well. It is still hard to know how well we know him. He tends to be a know-it-all, but perhaps that is an attempt to impress us? It is annoying as the title of household know-it-all clearly belongs to me.

He and Brett broke up, which is not surprising. Brett is closeted, or he thinks he is. Andrew was very surprised to hear that Brett thinks that he is closeted at high school. He has rainbows on his backpack. Still, having a boyfriend in town pushed him outside of his comfort zone. He did not want Evan to hang at his house and he was worried about how they would handle school. Evan has been out for a long time and was not interested in following Brett's rules.

It is interesting though. Evan has been going to City High for the past two years. He is quite open about the rules he followed there. There are four public high schools in The City and City High is the oldest, and is in the richest, most liberal, most well-educated section of town. Since The City has open enrollment, Evan rode the bus from His Small Town to go there. He did this because he wanted to be out as gay.

On the other hand, he never invited any one home, told them anything about his parents, or even that he lived in His Small Town. His Small Town bumps right up against the The City and though there have been some new Mc Mansion Developments along the river, for the most part it has a very seedy reputation. So Evan, who went to great lengths to go to a school outside his district where he could be safely out as gay, never let anyone know that he was from His Small Town. He told me that was careful about the clothes he wore and about what he did not say. He knew the kids would be fine about him being gay, but poor, that is something else.

He recently found out from his sister (the 15-year-old who lives with her father) that their mother 1) married the man who beat him up and 2) is in jail for parole violations. That was distressing to him, but he quickly put it behind him. I think he is good at that.

Evan's Story Part 1: The Beginning
Evan's Story Part 4: Settling in and News of David

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