I don’t care how fucking upset you are. You cannot come into my home, screaming obscenities and threatening the person I live with, even if that person is your daughter. Maybe, instead of taking the word of somebody who already stole from you, you should have stopped to think about what you were doing? Or is it just too much fun to play the martyr and pretend the rest of the family is plotting against you?
Background: My two nephews, ages 13 and 8, pop into the house, all by themselves. We live about twenty miles away from my sister’s house, so somebody had to drop them off in town. I asked them how they got here and the 13yo says his mother dropped them off at the beach and went to run errands. We’re about a mile from a lake and I’d been given no warning the kids were wandering around town by themselves. As I’m trying to figure out what my sister was thinking, my older nephew shows me a wad of cash from his pocket. He claims some friends of his gave it to him. It looked like he had eighty something dollars on him and he said he’d already spent some on sunglasses and a skateboard and given his mother $28 worth. Okay, so things are getting weirder. My sister doesn’t have a cellphone, so I can’t call her to ask WTF is going on, so I just go back to cleaning the house and after a while the kids say they’re going back to the beach. This doesn’t sit entirely well with me, even if their mother did leave them there.
My sister’s oldest child, my niece, lives with me due to their extremely unhealthy relationship and my niece’s history of depression as a result of this. She lives with me in the upstairs of a duplex with my mother in the downstairs. Between the both of us, there’s almost always someone around to keep an eye on her. My niece is now sixteen and has been getting her act together, much to everyone’s relief. She has a job and I knew she had a paycheck she wanted to cash, so I suggested she walk the boys down to the beach on her way to cashing her paycheck, while I stayed at home to see if her mother was going to show up.
So, she does. My niece comes back and says she left her brothers at the beach and she has to get ready to go out with some friends. Five minutes later, my sister arrives. She asks if the boys ever showed up at the house and I tell her, yes, and that they’d gone back to the beach. Then she starts asking about some money that’s missing from her purse. Oh boy, I think, my nephew must have stolen it. Ah! But it’s not that simple. It turns out the story of getting it from his friends was true, but that she had taken it away from him so that she could get her phone turned on, and then he’d apparently stolen it back before she dropped him off.
None of it makes any sense. Mothers shouldn’t have to take money from their young teens to get their phones fucking turned on. I feel like I’m getting lied to somewhere along the line, but whatever. My sister leaves to go track her sons down. A few minutes later she comes back, screaming obscenities. I ask her to please keep her voice down, as we live in a small town and the neighbors are so close I could spit on their house from my window. Apparently, my nephew is missing sixty dollars of the money he’d had and he claims he gave it to my niece. So, my sister storms in to scream at my niece and threaten her with the police. I ask my niece to show me her wallet and find that, in fact, all she has on her is the exact amount her paycheck had been for.
My sister continues insisting that my niece is just very, very good at stealing. The odd thing is that, in fact, my niece has no history of stealing. She’s never taken anything from me in the entire year I’ve lived with her, but my sister has stolen hundreds of dollars from me and my nephew was actually banned from a state park once after robbing a camper’s van.
Finally, my sister storms off, slamming doors behind her, yelling that she’s going to the police. After she’s gone, I realize that my nephew had said he’d spent money on sunglasses and a skateboard.
I bet those two things cost about $60.
Jesus Christ. I come from a nice middle-class family. I live in a nice little house, in a nice little town. How in the world is it that this pack of ghetto psychotics is related to me?