Almost a Woman

There was a teenage girl there–in rehab.  She was sixteen.  Skinny,  pretty, save some acne. I recognized this chick immediately, even though she had all of the other women eating out of her hand almost at once.

All of the other women had children.  They were in rehab to get them back. The addiction is very strong, but the maternal instinct is also strong.  I think about half of them have a good shot at it. You should hear the sobs I heard at night while they looked at pictures of their kids.

(Coincidentally, there was a gambling addict there who reminded me a lot like my father, Franz.  He was an Ad Man in NYC for 27 years. The guy was friggin meticulous. Button-down shirt, trousers, bright blue socks.  He had perfect posture.  And he was smart…highly intelligent. I’m a sapiosexual)

“No offence, sir. I actually like you a lot.  However, I don’t take any risk with gamblers,” I said.

“IT’S GAMING!” he yelled.  No, guy.  My father was a gambling addict, from whence I inherited this addict gene. The fact that you use an euphamism to cover up this factiod–“gaming”–like it’s a playsport–speaks tons. I don’t touch gamblers. That shit is poison. It ruins lives.  Ask me how I know.

Anyway, getting back to the girl…

She was manipulative as heck.  And I didn’t really dislike her. I put on my professor hat almost at once: I’d respect her and give her space, but I never trusted her.

She was smart. She was not a a good liar, however.  Not yet.

She came off as “shy.”  There was nothing shy about her.  The shyness was a real head-scratcher.

She consulted me constantly about legalese. I hate to be a snob about it, but I was the most educated person in the room.  This kid ain’t no fool.

“Is it legal that my Mom sent me here?” she asked, coming into my doorway.

“Well, yes.  I’m not familiar with minor jurisprudence in this state, but I am pretty sure that until you’re 18, your Mom has legal custody of you.  You are her ward. Basically, you are her slave, unless you can prove you’re being abused. I wish that wasn’t so, because I do believe children have rights, but that’s how it is.

You get drunk at school and your Mom keeps a wine closet in the house.  This is exactly where you need to be.  Back out now while you can.  Trust me.  I’ve done the research.  I’ve been struggling with this most of my adult life.  You’re smart. Too smart to be an asshat.  Stop lying.  Go to college.  You know most of my students were almost your age, right?”

Know what she did…?

She ran out the front door 15 minutes later.  All of the alarms went off.

I want to protect her.  All of the other women were swarming around her the entire time she was there, because they felt guilty. They did not see what I saw.

I still have hope.

 

 

 


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