For the record, my parents played me new wave when I was a little kid; I still love it, and also riot grrrl, glam rock, some classical, and much modern music that I don’t know how to classify anymore. Ruth and Nora listen to reggae and oldies with a smattering of funk.
So I explained to my therapist about the truck, and it turned into a bigger conversation about culture. I’ve expressed in the past my frustration with the fact that it seems like Ruth and Nora’s culture “wins”; it is important in the relationship in the way that mine isn’t. Well, my therapist has pointed out that this is at least in part my fault. By trying to anticipate their wishes in this area, I end up minimizing my beliefs/culture/religion/tastes/etc. I don’t mean that I have any desire to get Cricket, say, religious children’s books in German—but I have wondered whether I should take the Christian children’s books I have (among many secular ones, I hasten to add)—off the shelf and hide them somewhere when Cricket visits, in case his moms are offended that I let him come in contact with that kind of thing. (And then, of course, I wonder whether the old testament bible story books would be okay—because they are part of our shared heritage—or not—because they have a Christian perspective. I could drive myself crazy with this kind of thing.)
My therapist says, “What are you, nuts? You need to be who you are in your own home. Not only because living some kind of weirdo double life will make you increasingly resentful but because Cricket deserves access to that. He might like your music, he might like your books, and if you stuff those things in the closet whenever he comes around, he’s going to feel shut out. Not cool, miss.” —I hope you don’t mind my putting her thoughts into my idiom.
In terms of familial differences, we’re the family that tends to have cookies around (because I love to make ‘em), that plays videogames, that listens to punk and goes to Mass and reads graphic novels. Once we have a futurekid, that futurekid will be living our culture, and I wouldn’t want to explain to him or her why we’re going to be doing things a little differently whenever Cricket comes around. Too weird.
This starts with the truck, apparently—my therapist encouraged me to do what I feel moved to do—I would add to that, “so long as it isn’t obviously disrespectful or inappropriate.” I feel a bit nervous about this new policy, to be honest. My therapist seems to believe that it will eventually lead to some kind of confrontation, and I hope that she’s wrong.