Feb 252010
 
Monkees…Ask and you shall receive. A guest post from Our Krystal….


Following Jake

I know that many Monkees are parents. A lot of you have beautiful young children and a few of us have teenagers and young adults. Being a mom has been the best lesson I’ve ever had in “I can do hard things.” It’s not all episodes of Barney around here, folks, now is it? I want to share the story of just one of my five masterpieces. I could share the story of Kendall who is just plain perfect, but instead I want to share the one about Jake. Nobody really believes all that perfection crap anyway.

My first son, Jacob Aaron Courtney, was the most beautiful baby ever born. He had a golden beautiful glow around him and he was perfect. That is how I felt about him for a long, long time. Jake was good and kind and smart and funny. He stayed that way until around his twelfth birthday. By twelve, he was still all of those things but he was also learning that when I said “you may not turn your hair blue” that came with the post script “until I leave this house to go to work, then knock yourself out.”

By age thirteen, Jake was suspended from school for three days for um…inciting riot (starting a food fight). He was also suspended for cursing. The principal said that the teacher said Jake told another student to “shut the hell up.” Jake said that was not, in fact, the truth. He’d actually told the entire class to shut the hell up. They were keeping him from hearing the teacher. He burned a table with a light bulb in shop class, got picked up by the cops for skateboarding in an apartment complex. Etc.

I was a single mom at this point in his life and up to this point I have to admit that I secretly laughed inside when he did things like this because I was such a goody-two-shoes that I never ever got sent to the principal’s office in school. I liked the rebel in my son. I still punished him for his crimes, but probably half-heartedly.

By high school, I was re-thinking my admiration. Jake became such a liar and a sneak that I had to quickly reel him in. In ninth grade he met his girlfriend, Megan. He loved that girl so much that he’d do anything to be with her. He also had found the nicest group of criminal minded friends to hang around with. They weren’t bad, they just dressed that way (riiiight). Well, as fast as he was learning ways to get around my rules, I was finding new ways to thwart his evil plans. I sat him down with a written list of rules. I explained that I really wanted nothing more in life than to be good to him and treat him nicely, but there were things he had to do if he wanted to continue to live in my house. The rules were simple. Get good grades, don’t lie, no porn, no sex, no drugs, no alcohol. That list might as well have said “please tear me up and ignore me.” The next step was to invade every area of his life. I had his locker searched at school (and the lockers of every one of his friends), my husband and I recorded his phone calls, logged his internet conversations, tracked his browser history and checked up on him when he went somewhere with friends by actually following him. I drug tested him regularly and randomly (he always passed, amazingly enough). This might seem extreme. It was extreme. But, you see, I had to. I love that boy. I love him with all of my heart and what he was doing could potentially get him killed. For example, if his girlfriend got pregnant…I’d kill him. This tracking and stalking did not come easy for us. Jake was sucking so much energy from our family. I was determined to not allow him to destroy us and he was determined to self-destruct.

By the summer before his senior year in high school, Jake was barely in the position to graduate the next year. He was still with the girlfriend and the chips on our shoulders were craters. I caught him lying once again and I reminded him that he could live by my rules or get out.

He said “ok, I’m going to live with dad.” I died. How could the baby I raised choose to live with his dad rather than live by my reasonable rules?

So I said “pack your stuff.”And off he went to his dad’s house. The second he left I cried and cried. And then our family became quieter and happier and we missed him but we were able to breathe.

He was there for almost 3 months before asking to come back home. I allowed it, but with the understanding that this is not a revolving door…this is his last trip back home. I reminded him that the rules hadn’t changed and he said that was ok. He missed our big noisy family and he wanted to be at home. It was a wonderful homecoming, for about two months. Things were back to normal quickly though. Only this time my husband and I were not ready to return to a life of following Jake. Instead, what we did was the complete opposite.

Jake’s new non-rules were these : You’re free. You come and go as you please but the house doors are locked at 10pm. You’re an adult. You pay for whatever you want. You want the internet? Buy yourself a computer and you can pay us to use our internet. You want money? Get a job. You need to go somewhere? Here’s the name and number of a local cab company. You may watch our TV as long as you don’t mind watching what we’re watching. Your drug tests will be regular and random, just as before. We still love you, but we don’t believe a word you say and now you have no reason to lie…try speaking the truth or not speaking at all.

He was FURIOUS with this new set of non-rules. But we weren’t. We stopped following, listening and prying. He stopped sneaking out, lying to us, hiding things. He started working, bought a car, paid his way in life, got fabulous grades in his senior year and he graduated. Jake’s now in college and he works and he’s good and kind and funny and handsome oh and he is still with that same girlfriend, Megan, whom we have all grown to love now that she’s not hidden away from us. He also became the son I knew he would be, that first day when he was born.

Raising Jake was the hardest thing I’ve done in life so far. The rewards for raising him the way we did have been so wide-spread. His younger siblings watched and learned through him and if they forget, Jake quickly reminds them that while it might not seem fair, they should just man-up and behave because the alternate route is no way to go.

I really believe that raising our kids is something we have to do our own way. I hope my younger kids decide to teach me gentler lessons in life. Whatever they bring, I’m ready!


Jake and Megan






Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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  100 Responses to “Following Jake”

  1. Krystal…thanks for being real about your son. I get so tired of competetive parenting. While I am with Glennon on the potty humor – ewwww, I can appreciate Monkees being real and true to themselves. TGIF!

  2. Krystal…thanks for being real about your son. I get so tired of competetive parenting. While I am with Glennon on the potty humor – ewwww, I can appreciate Monkees being real and true to themselves. TGIF!

  3. Krystal, I'm putting this post right in my back pocket. Thank you.

  4. Krystal, I'm putting this post right in my back pocket. Thank you.

  5. Krystal better watch out…I'm thinking about writing a cocktale about her soon. :)

  6. Krystal better watch out…I'm thinking about writing a cocktale about her soon. :)

  7. Krystal, I'm so proud and happy to be in your new group of friends.

    I love you Krystal, and you love me.
    We're a happy family, Krystal.

    Admit it, sister!

  8. Krystal, I'm so proud and happy to be in your new group of friends.

    I love you Krystal, and you love me.
    We're a happy family, Krystal.

    Admit it, sister!

  9. Yaaaay for bathroom humor!! Poop, pee, farts, boogers…all hilarious.

  10. Yaaaay for bathroom humor!! Poop, pee, farts, boogers…all hilarious.

  11. It's pretty amazing, most all of my friends are huge fans of potty humor. Today has been wonderful and I feel like I'm among a whole new group of friends. (who happen to love potty humor)
    Thank you monkees for being so kind to me today.

  12. It's pretty amazing, most all of my friends are huge fans of potty humor. Today has been wonderful and I feel like I'm among a whole new group of friends. (who happen to love potty humor)
    Thank you monkees for being so kind to me today.

  13. Jennifer M … me too. Me too. If God didn't want us to giggle at farts, he would have made them silent….all the time. I am 49. And I lose it in the store if I hear a poor old woman slip one out at the check-out counter. Sorry Krystal, I am not sure where this beautiful post of your turned to this! LOL.

    Terri

  14. Jennifer M … me too. Me too. If God didn't want us to giggle at farts, he would have made them silent….all the time. I am 49. And I lose it in the store if I hear a poor old woman slip one out at the check-out counter. Sorry Krystal, I am not sure where this beautiful post of your turned to this! LOL.

    Terri

  15. We were just talking about this today. I thought I was the only 33 year old out there that thinks farts are hilarious. I mean drop down crying hilarious.

    Jennifer M

  16. We were just talking about this today. I thought I was the only 33 year old out there that thinks farts are hilarious. I mean drop down crying hilarious.

    Jennifer M

  17. MK, Krystal, Glennon and my dear friend Adrianne… I love all these posts.
    I grew up with 3 older brothers. Bodily functions were laughed at daily. Can't help it. I still laugh at it. And I do say fart only in certain company though. Although I do like toot much better. When my dainty daughter Nat burps, I say "waytagogirl!". She is dainty, with a spicey twist. Ask Adrianne. (burp). 'scuse me. She knows. Adrianne taught me what a dutch oven was and I thought it was only for cooking in. Turns out my husband "dutch ovens" often. Yep, we'll never grow up.

    Terri

  18. MK, Krystal, Glennon and my dear friend Adrianne… I love all these posts.
    I grew up with 3 older brothers. Bodily functions were laughed at daily. Can't help it. I still laugh at it. And I do say fart only in certain company though. Although I do like toot much better. When my dainty daughter Nat burps, I say "waytagogirl!". She is dainty, with a spicey twist. Ask Adrianne. (burp). 'scuse me. She knows. Adrianne taught me what a dutch oven was and I thought it was only for cooking in. Turns out my husband "dutch ovens" often. Yep, we'll never grow up.

    Terri

  19. It was you or Sara, but I wish it was me! I just got used deodorant and a bunch of bobble head dolls.

    A friend gave me that awful book too and we say 'pooted' but I think it will accidentally end up in the trash soon.

    :)MK

  20. It was you or Sara, but I wish it was me! I just got used deodorant and a bunch of bobble head dolls.

    A friend gave me that awful book too and we say 'pooted' but I think it will accidentally end up in the trash soon.

    :)MK

  21. Great post. Wonderful story about a mother's love and wonderful ending. So glad he was responsive. Unfortunately, my brother never has been, but I digress….

    Side note, I can't say it either!! yuck!!!! I tell my toddlers to say they "have gas," which my husband mocks endlessly..

  22. Great post. Wonderful story about a mother's love and wonderful ending. So glad he was responsive. Unfortunately, my brother never has been, but I digress….

    Side note, I can't say it either!! yuck!!!! I tell my toddlers to say they "have gas," which my husband mocks endlessly..

  23. Never banished, MK- Was it me or you or Sara who one of the kids gave a #1 Sex Machine Necklace to for Christmas? We really should have taught them to read better.

    K- Adrianne has made it one of her life's missions to get me to say the f word. She even brought a children's book to my house with that horrible word in it 400 times. we say tooted, and honestly, i don't even like that. ick.

  24. Never banished, MK- Was it me or you or Sara who one of the kids gave a #1 Sex Machine Necklace to for Christmas? We really should have taught them to read better.

    K- Adrianne has made it one of her life's missions to get me to say the f word. She even brought a children's book to my house with that horrible word in it 400 times. we say tooted, and honestly, i don't even like that. ick.

  25. That's awesome. I think when things get really hard it's totally ok to let good grammar trump bad form.

    I can't say "fart" either. My kids have to say "my bottom burped" because that's what their babysitter will allow. Of course, Adrianne giggles at all things bodily function related so I'm sure she's having a great day as of right now!

  26. That's awesome. I think when things get really hard it's totally ok to let good grammar trump bad form.

    I can't say "fart" either. My kids have to say "my bottom burped" because that's what their babysitter will allow. Of course, Adrianne giggles at all things bodily function related so I'm sure she's having a great day as of right now!

  27. I'm sorry, Monkees. I don't know what came over me but that was really off 'collar'. :)

    I'll just never forget poor Glennon's initiation into the world of bad student behavior. She can't even say fart, and here she was hearing such awful things . . . oh shoot. I was just off collar again.

    Am I banished for the day?

    :)MK

  28. I'm sorry, Monkees. I don't know what came over me but that was really off 'collar'. :)

    I'll just never forget poor Glennon's initiation into the world of bad student behavior. She can't even say fart, and here she was hearing such awful things . . . oh shoot. I was just off collar again.

    Am I banished for the day?

    :)MK

  29. When Glennon and I were teaching together, I had a boy in my class who was a little spicy, to put it mildly. He was an ESL student. We'll call him R. R said something really ugly to one of Glennon's kids. Specifically, he said, "Your mama's a B%$@ and your sister F#$@s" I called his mom and punished him appropriately, of course. Later, I was talking to Glennon who was extremely horrified by the incident (she had only been a teacher for a few months). She had that big, doe-eyed, horrified Glennon look about her. I said, "Look, Glennon. We should be proud of R. He's making really good progress with his English. He used those ugly words the way they were intended."

    Glennon let out that wonderful loud laugh of hers and conceded my point. I never saw that look of horror over a student's behavior again.

    :)MK

  30. When Glennon and I were teaching together, I had a boy in my class who was a little spicy, to put it mildly. He was an ESL student. We'll call him R. R said something really ugly to one of Glennon's kids. Specifically, he said, "Your mama's a B%$@ and your sister F#$@s" I called his mom and punished him appropriately, of course. Later, I was talking to Glennon who was extremely horrified by the incident (she had only been a teacher for a few months). She had that big, doe-eyed, horrified Glennon look about her. I said, "Look, Glennon. We should be proud of R. He's making really good progress with his English. He used those ugly words the way they were intended."

    Glennon let out that wonderful loud laugh of hers and conceded my point. I never saw that look of horror over a student's behavior again.

    :)MK

  31. Krystal,

    I have been the younger, really well behaved sibling in this story…I have seen what it does to the moms and dads. You are amazing and I pray to have your wisdom and courage as my children grow (or the money to hire you to help me). Funny how when we were young and all wanted to have a family and cute babies, we never said "and I can't wait to have a teenager!" You are a gift to your son and family.

  32. Krystal,

    I have been the younger, really well behaved sibling in this story…I have seen what it does to the moms and dads. You are amazing and I pray to have your wisdom and courage as my children grow (or the money to hire you to help me). Funny how when we were young and all wanted to have a family and cute babies, we never said "and I can't wait to have a teenager!" You are a gift to your son and family.

  33. thank you for your story, krystal. what an example you are for all of us. sometimes i don't think i have that kind of determiniation and grit inside of me…

  34. thank you for your story, krystal. what an example you are for all of us. sometimes i don't think i have that kind of determiniation and grit inside of me…

  35. Foxy Loxy,
    As a former teacher, I can almost guarantee she laughed at the "all the teachers here are drunks" line. If she didn't laugh, she should resign. I would have had a really hard time keeping a straight face.

    Terri, thanks for the shout-out, dahlin. You are awesome too.

  36. Foxy Loxy,
    As a former teacher, I can almost guarantee she laughed at the "all the teachers here are drunks" line. If she didn't laugh, she should resign. I would have had a really hard time keeping a straight face.

    Terri, thanks for the shout-out, dahlin. You are awesome too.

  37. I love this story & love how it all worked out. Thanks so much for sharing.

  38. I love this story & love how it all worked out. Thanks so much for sharing.

  39. Krystal, can you come raise my boys in 10 years? Wow, I cannot imagine the tears and screams that came from your body during those tough years. I'm so grateful for your story and for your bravery in sharing it.

    Okay, confession time: My oldest came home from school last year (it was four-year-old preschool) with his first "bad note" home. It read, "Joshua, W, K, and M were eating leaves on the playground. Joshua and W spit them out but K and M swallowed them." It was one of my toughest moments as a mom…trying to stay serious while telling Joshua not to put leaves in his mouth anymore. That note is now in his baby book and I hope it's the worst one I ever get home. However, I'll probably be calling Krystal for advice in a few years.

  40. Krystal, can you come raise my boys in 10 years? Wow, I cannot imagine the tears and screams that came from your body during those tough years. I'm so grateful for your story and for your bravery in sharing it.

    Okay, confession time: My oldest came home from school last year (it was four-year-old preschool) with his first "bad note" home. It read, "Joshua, W, K, and M were eating leaves on the playground. Joshua and W spit them out but K and M swallowed them." It was one of my toughest moments as a mom…trying to stay serious while telling Joshua not to put leaves in his mouth anymore. That note is now in his baby book and I hope it's the worst one I ever get home. However, I'll probably be calling Krystal for advice in a few years.

  41. Thank you for your story, Krystal. I love the word Chimmy used: steadfast. You never stopped loving or believing in Jake– and he rose to the occasion beautifully. I think the picture of him and Megan is great!

    I spent 11 years teaching middle and high school and I like to think it will give me some street cred with my kids when they hit these ages, but I'm still scared of those days to come.

    The one bonus of my teaching career is that I already knew that my kids' behavior was beyond my control and making excuses for bad choices wasn't appropriate. I've explained to my 3rd grader that the teacher is nearly always telling the truth and that I intend to hold him responsible for his actions. He seems to be one of those people who has to learn through hard experience, so I'm getting worried about his teen years. But here's a story that we could laugh about, once the embarrassment wore off.
    Second grade was hard for my eldest– we'll call him Patrick. It included the preterm delivery of his sisters, his mom in the hospital, his sisters in NICU and then the arrival home of his tiny sisters who needed his mom's full attention. He acted out more that year, but had a loving, strict teacher who saw his potential– for this we are thankful.
    One Spring day, Patrick and his best friend were kicking a fence at recess, 'cause that's what 2nd grade boys do. A teacher approached and told them to stop. The friend stopped and walked away. Dear Patrick replied, "I don't have to do what you say. I don't have to do what any of the teachers here say. All the teachers here are drunks."
    We were again blessed with a compassionate principal who recognized that the little guy was having a stressful year AND was familiar with the 1940's TinTin comic books which Patrick loved. There is a character who often overindulges and Patrick decided to make a connection between fiction and real life.
    He had to apologize to the teacher (who hopefully found it funny in the end) and got to spend Elective day scraping gum off the pavement. He hasn't tried that particular stunt again.

    I hope I can alway give Patrick and his siblings steadfast love. Either that, or I'm sending him to you, Krystal.

  42. Thank you for your story, Krystal. I love the word Chimmy used: steadfast. You never stopped loving or believing in Jake– and he rose to the occasion beautifully. I think the picture of him and Megan is great!

    I spent 11 years teaching middle and high school and I like to think it will give me some street cred with my kids when they hit these ages, but I'm still scared of those days to come.

    The one bonus of my teaching career is that I already knew that my kids' behavior was beyond my control and making excuses for bad choices wasn't appropriate. I've explained to my 3rd grader that the teacher is nearly always telling the truth and that I intend to hold him responsible for his actions. He seems to be one of those people who has to learn through hard experience, so I'm getting worried about his teen years. But here's a story that we could laugh about, once the embarrassment wore off.
    Second grade was hard for my eldest– we'll call him Patrick. It included the preterm delivery of his sisters, his mom in the hospital, his sisters in NICU and then the arrival home of his tiny sisters who needed his mom's full attention. He acted out more that year, but had a loving, strict teacher who saw his potential– for this we are thankful.
    One Spring day, Patrick and his best friend were kicking a fence at recess, 'cause that's what 2nd grade boys do. A teacher approached and told them to stop. The friend stopped and walked away. Dear Patrick replied, "I don't have to do what you say. I don't have to do what any of the teachers here say. All the teachers here are drunks."
    We were again blessed with a compassionate principal who recognized that the little guy was having a stressful year AND was familiar with the 1940's TinTin comic books which Patrick loved. There is a character who often overindulges and Patrick decided to make a connection between fiction and real life.
    He had to apologize to the teacher (who hopefully found it funny in the end) and got to spend Elective day scraping gum off the pavement. He hasn't tried that particular stunt again.

    I hope I can alway give Patrick and his siblings steadfast love. Either that, or I'm sending him to you, Krystal.

  43. Hi Krystal,

    Your story is such a great illustration that you can't get the "right" answers about parenting from anyone or anywhere else…you have to commit to your beliefs about what kind of people you're trying to help them become, holding those ideals higher than just keeping peace or being liked. Then you have to feel your way for how to help them get there, changing your own responses to fit each child at each moment in his or her life. I hope I can handle my sons' inevitable challenges with as much grace as you did. Thanks for sharing your story.

    Diane

  44. Hi Krystal,

    Your story is such a great illustration that you can't get the "right" answers about parenting from anyone or anywhere else…you have to commit to your beliefs about what kind of people you're trying to help them become, holding those ideals higher than just keeping peace or being liked. Then you have to feel your way for how to help them get there, changing your own responses to fit each child at each moment in his or her life. I hope I can handle my sons' inevitable challenges with as much grace as you did. Thanks for sharing your story.

    Diane

  45. Jennifer M – robo-tripping is when kids drink cough medicine to get high, mostly Robotussin. I think I spelled that right!

  46. Jennifer M – robo-tripping is when kids drink cough medicine to get high, mostly Robotussin. I think I spelled that right!

  47. Krystal – Anonymous 8:47am here – actually my name is Terri (and I know Adrianne – is she is AWEsome!!!)I don't have a URL or whatever and I keep forgetting to sign "Terri". No secrets here! We went through all those hair colors too. I also cried a never ending river of tears … thank you for your nice reply. I think the worst part – besides her safety through all this – was actually having parents judge me and my family and spread rumors. You want to cry and at the same time you want to wring their freaking necks for being so judgemental(since their kid was doing the same thing and they refused to believe it). At least it is in the past but it did cost friendships too and that did hurt. But then again, those people were not worth the time of day were they and ended up dealing with their own troubles. A shame they didn't have a shoulder like mine to cry on or a friend like me to sympathize with. And, what goes around comes around. I know it does for me! I do my best at not being a jerk and I can safely say I am not! But, if crossed …. the b*tch will come out!
    Have a great day to you and everyone else here.

  48. Krystal – Anonymous 8:47am here – actually my name is Terri (and I know Adrianne – is she is AWEsome!!!)I don't have a URL or whatever and I keep forgetting to sign "Terri". No secrets here! We went through all those hair colors too. I also cried a never ending river of tears … thank you for your nice reply. I think the worst part – besides her safety through all this – was actually having parents judge me and my family and spread rumors. You want to cry and at the same time you want to wring their freaking necks for being so judgemental(since their kid was doing the same thing and they refused to believe it). At least it is in the past but it did cost friendships too and that did hurt. But then again, those people were not worth the time of day were they and ended up dealing with their own troubles. A shame they didn't have a shoulder like mine to cry on or a friend like me to sympathize with. And, what goes around comes around. I know it does for me! I do my best at not being a jerk and I can safely say I am not! But, if crossed …. the b*tch will come out!
    Have a great day to you and everyone else here.

  49. Krystal, I think you (and Jake!) are fantastic! Brave and honest through and through. I think when people don't talk about their struggles, they often think they are alone. It rang clear to me that you love your son immeasurably and that he started manning-up when he had too. I certainly hope that future employer googlers don't hold anybody's high school behavior against them! Especially when he got his act together before high school was even over.

    I love what MK said and you've shown…these were his mistakes. You helped him and guided him, but did not take the blame for him or put it on anyone else or come flying in to his rescue. Instead you *GASP* held him responsible for changing his circumstances! I too am for Krystal for president! The blaming others phenomena starts SO young as evidenced in my classroom and in my inbox from parents each night. It's always someone else inciting their darlings to do wrong, never a good idea to make them responsible for those actions. Crazy sauce! I think you've raised a young man who will not only be wonderful, but will have a fantastic sense of humor :)

    I also LOVE the skateboard pic! And Megan is a cutie. I wish them lots of happiness!!!

    Abbey B.

  50. Krystal, I think you (and Jake!) are fantastic! Brave and honest through and through. I think when people don't talk about their struggles, they often think they are alone. It rang clear to me that you love your son immeasurably and that he started manning-up when he had too. I certainly hope that future employer googlers don't hold anybody's high school behavior against them! Especially when he got his act together before high school was even over.

    I love what MK said and you've shown…these were his mistakes. You helped him and guided him, but did not take the blame for him or put it on anyone else or come flying in to his rescue. Instead you *GASP* held him responsible for changing his circumstances! I too am for Krystal for president! The blaming others phenomena starts SO young as evidenced in my classroom and in my inbox from parents each night. It's always someone else inciting their darlings to do wrong, never a good idea to make them responsible for those actions. Crazy sauce! I think you've raised a young man who will not only be wonderful, but will have a fantastic sense of humor :)

    I also LOVE the skateboard pic! And Megan is a cutie. I wish them lots of happiness!!!

    Abbey B.

  51. <3 Jennifer. I love peace makers.

    My story with internet safety is very scary so i can see the points made as well. I can attest to the fact that people can and will use the most innocent information in the worst ways. Jake and Megan and I are all proud of this story though, and of those pictures.

    We're also happy having our story in this momastery where we feel safe and warm. We're too busy singing to put anybody down.

  52. <3 Jennifer. I love peace makers.

    My story with internet safety is very scary so i can see the points made as well. I can attest to the fact that people can and will use the most innocent information in the worst ways. Jake and Megan and I are all proud of this story though, and of those pictures.

    We're also happy having our story in this momastery where we feel safe and warm. We're too busy singing to put anybody down.

  53. Dear Concerned and Pot Stirrer,

    I can see both sides of your points and I want to make sure not one's feelings are hurt so I'll try not to be a jerk ;-)

    Concerned has a good point though. My story doesn't involve any drugs, sex or anything illegal but more along the lines of abusive relationships and I just don't want my kids to see their fathers in a different way then they view them now. They love their Dads, no need to tarnish that relationship, so I asked Glennon not to post my picture or my name if she decides to post my story.

    I also agree though with Pot Stirrer. I hate reading stories that have DH, DD, etc.. that really does annoy me. Pick a name and go with it.

    In society these days we do need to be concerned about our children and what we put out there. Nothing it seems like is safe.

    Ok, with that said, (((HUGS))) to everyone.

    Jennifer

  54. Dear Concerned and Pot Stirrer,

    I can see both sides of your points and I want to make sure not one's feelings are hurt so I'll try not to be a jerk ;-)

    Concerned has a good point though. My story doesn't involve any drugs, sex or anything illegal but more along the lines of abusive relationships and I just don't want my kids to see their fathers in a different way then they view them now. They love their Dads, no need to tarnish that relationship, so I asked Glennon not to post my picture or my name if she decides to post my story.

    I also agree though with Pot Stirrer. I hate reading stories that have DH, DD, etc.. that really does annoy me. Pick a name and go with it.

    In society these days we do need to be concerned about our children and what we put out there. Nothing it seems like is safe.

    Ok, with that said, (((HUGS))) to everyone.

    Jennifer

  55. Pot Stirrer,

    The answers to your questions are obvious and I think you are intentionally stirring the pot. I hope you understand the difference between a blog owner showing pictures and writing names of her family, as opposed to guest authors who may or may not understand the full ramifications of publishing things on the internet.

    I'm not saying any approach is right or wrong. I'm just asking that Glennon and the guest authors think the issue through prior to posting.

    Finally, would your appreciation of this post have been negatively impacted if instead of Jake, the son was named Jason? And also if the images used were pulled from the net like Glennon does for many of her posts? Would you have known the difference?

    Signed,
    Concerned, but not enough to stick around any longer

  56. Pot Stirrer,

    The answers to your questions are obvious and I think you are intentionally stirring the pot. I hope you understand the difference between a blog owner showing pictures and writing names of her family, as opposed to guest authors who may or may not understand the full ramifications of publishing things on the internet.

    I'm not saying any approach is right or wrong. I'm just asking that Glennon and the guest authors think the issue through prior to posting.

    Finally, would your appreciation of this post have been negatively impacted if instead of Jake, the son was named Jason? And also if the images used were pulled from the net like Glennon does for many of her posts? Would you have known the difference?

    Signed,
    Concerned, but not enough to stick around any longer

  57. Great post Krystal. My children are 5, 4 and 7 months and these stories are the ones that frighten me. Although it is hard having small children, at least they are young enough that they are in my control. Oh my when they can actually choose to leave my house and not come home when told. I appreciate hearing stories like this in the hopes that I real remember them 10 years for now. Thank you Krystal for being so brave to talk about your struggles with Jake.

    Tricia

  58. Great post Krystal. My children are 5, 4 and 7 months and these stories are the ones that frighten me. Although it is hard having small children, at least they are young enough that they are in my control. Oh my when they can actually choose to leave my house and not come home when told. I appreciate hearing stories like this in the hopes that I real remember them 10 years for now. Thank you Krystal for being so brave to talk about your struggles with Jake.

    Tricia

  59. Dear Concerned,

    Why is it ok for Glennon to have a blog where she uses real names and real photos, but not for her guest posters?

    I believe that using real names and real photos draws the reader in and makes the stories we tell come to life.

    Who likes reading about a "BD" with "DH" while trying not to wake "DD" or "DS"? And who would want to look at Faceless photos?

    Thanks for your concern, but I don't think in 10 years, Jake will be turned down for a high profile job because his mommy used his real name in this blog post. By then, I'm sure he'll have already "tarnished" his image by appearing on "Jersey Shore XVI"…

    Signed,
    Anonymous pot stirrer

  60. Dear Concerned,

    Why is it ok for Glennon to have a blog where she uses real names and real photos, but not for her guest posters?

    I believe that using real names and real photos draws the reader in and makes the stories we tell come to life.

    Who likes reading about a "BD" with "DH" while trying not to wake "DD" or "DS"? And who would want to look at Faceless photos?

    Thanks for your concern, but I don't think in 10 years, Jake will be turned down for a high profile job because his mommy used his real name in this blog post. By then, I'm sure he'll have already "tarnished" his image by appearing on "Jersey Shore XVI"…

    Signed,
    Anonymous pot stirrer

  61. Such steadfast love, such a triumphant story, Krystal! Thank you for sharing it with us!

    My father likened the plight of parenthood to having firewalked on his own journey, only to watch his children have to do the same. He was… is constantly worried that we may get burned.

  62. Such steadfast love, such a triumphant story, Krystal! Thank you for sharing it with us!

    My father likened the plight of parenthood to having firewalked on his own journey, only to watch his children have to do the same. He was… is constantly worried that we may get burned.

  63. Krystal,

    Thanks for the response. I have lots of stuff on the internet with my name/image attached and some of it I wish weren't out there. It was fine 5-10 years ago, but not now.

    It's probably too late in this case as I'm sure Google has already stored a cached version of this page, but going forward I would encourage Glennon to think about this. Changing names or blurring the face in images won't detract from the story and it will protect those involved.

    Signed,
    Less Concerned, but Still Concerned

  64. Krystal,

    Thanks for the response. I have lots of stuff on the internet with my name/image attached and some of it I wish weren't out there. It was fine 5-10 years ago, but not now.

    It's probably too late in this case as I'm sure Google has already stored a cached version of this page, but going forward I would encourage Glennon to think about this. Changing names or blurring the face in images won't detract from the story and it will protect those involved.

    Signed,
    Less Concerned, but Still Concerned

  65. In a flood of emotion, I cannot get over the timing of this post. Just this morning I was again mourning over our daughter. Providence says, "Hold on. I've got her. Her story will be for My glory."

    We've done both of the approaches you wrote about and neither has had any good that we can see…yet. She has been in a dark, dark mess for the past few years but no longer lives in our home and will be traveling down to spring break where MTV will be (fake ID and all) and I am TERRIFIED for her.

    Thank you for your post. I will praise our mighty God for His grace and forgiveness, that He loves her more than I ever could…therefore His pain is also much deeper. I will remain on my knees for her and remember to breathe and turn it all over to Him.

  66. In a flood of emotion, I cannot get over the timing of this post. Just this morning I was again mourning over our daughter. Providence says, "Hold on. I've got her. Her story will be for My glory."

    We've done both of the approaches you wrote about and neither has had any good that we can see…yet. She has been in a dark, dark mess for the past few years but no longer lives in our home and will be traveling down to spring break where MTV will be (fake ID and all) and I am TERRIFIED for her.

    Thank you for your post. I will praise our mighty God for His grace and forgiveness, that He loves her more than I ever could…therefore His pain is also much deeper. I will remain on my knees for her and remember to breathe and turn it all over to Him.

  67. Krystal – Thanks for sharing – so good to hear . . . I will most certainly tuck this away for the years ahead!

  68. Krystal – Thanks for sharing – so good to hear . . . I will most certainly tuck this away for the years ahead!

  69. I think it's perfect Krystal! I do understand though the concern. I also wrote my story to Glennon and told her not to post my picture for just that reason. I don't want 10 years from now my kids to come across what I wrote because I don't think I will ever tell them my story unless I absolutely have to.

    Jennifer M

  70. I think it's perfect Krystal! I do understand though the concern. I also wrote my story to Glennon and told her not to post my picture for just that reason. I don't want 10 years from now my kids to come across what I wrote because I don't think I will ever tell them my story unless I absolutely have to.

    Jennifer M

  71. Thanks for being concerned,
    Jake read and approved this post already and he's an adult now. I just read him your post and he said that Megan won't mind because she has no future plans or goals and that he's considering becoming a meth addict now that we all think he's good. Can you tell he got my sense of humor?

    In seriousness though, this was discussed before I sent it to Glennon and Jake/Megan are not afraid of anything bad happening because of this post but I'm really not opposed to having it edited if you guys think it is bad? I'm easy.

  72. Thanks for being concerned,
    Jake read and approved this post already and he's an adult now. I just read him your post and he said that Megan won't mind because she has no future plans or goals and that he's considering becoming a meth addict now that we all think he's good. Can you tell he got my sense of humor?

    In seriousness though, this was discussed before I sent it to Glennon and Jake/Megan are not afraid of anything bad happening because of this post but I'm really not opposed to having it edited if you guys think it is bad? I'm easy.

  73. I'm assuming the names used in this post are not real names, right? With how common it is for places of employment to do a quick Google background check as part of the hiring process, this post seems like it might have a negative impact on Jake's future endeavors. Granted, he did these things, but I'd be surprised that we'd publish his real name and that of his girlfriend. Did she consent to the post/name/picture?

    Signed,
    Concerned for the Kids

  74. I'm assuming the names used in this post are not real names, right? With how common it is for places of employment to do a quick Google background check as part of the hiring process, this post seems like it might have a negative impact on Jake's future endeavors. Granted, he did these things, but I'd be surprised that we'd publish his real name and that of his girlfriend. Did she consent to the post/name/picture?

    Signed,
    Concerned for the Kids

  75. I feel so out of. Anonymous, what in Gods name is robo-tripping?

  76. I feel so out of. Anonymous, what in Gods name is robo-tripping?

  77. Krystal,
    You are my hero and my hope! I have a 16 year old who is in the blue hair phase as we speak. It is so hard and scary! Thank you for this very important lesson in parenting. Now, I wonder where I should start…
    XoXo Susie.

    I second Krystal for president!

  78. Krystal,
    You are my hero and my hope! I have a 16 year old who is in the blue hair phase as we speak. It is so hard and scary! Thank you for this very important lesson in parenting. Now, I wonder where I should start…
    XoXo Susie.

    I second Krystal for president!

  79. Krystal, you have me crying at my desk right now and I have a meeting in a couple hours and I didn't bring any make-up (thanks a lot :-) )

    I don't know you but you are my hero. I would like to get to know you a lot better. I am a single Mom and although my daughter is 7, I see my future looking somewhat like yours. My daughter is so head strong and my biggest fear is that she is a follower and will do whatever (good or bad) that her friends do, but at the same time she can be the sweetest little thing.

    I am so terrified of the teen years that I have already put a deposit down for a really nice white jacket that allows me to hug myself.

    You have given me some great advice on how to handle the years that I hope and pray I never have to go through.

    Thank you

    Jennifer M

  80. Krystal, you have me crying at my desk right now and I have a meeting in a couple hours and I didn't bring any make-up (thanks a lot :-) )

    I don't know you but you are my hero. I would like to get to know you a lot better. I am a single Mom and although my daughter is 7, I see my future looking somewhat like yours. My daughter is so head strong and my biggest fear is that she is a follower and will do whatever (good or bad) that her friends do, but at the same time she can be the sweetest little thing.

    I am so terrified of the teen years that I have already put a deposit down for a really nice white jacket that allows me to hug myself.

    You have given me some great advice on how to handle the years that I hope and pray I never have to go through.

    Thank you

    Jennifer M

  81. Krystal, Love your style and your story! Thanks so much.

  82. Krystal, Love your style and your story! Thanks so much.

  83. dear anonymous, (8:47)
    Believe me, we had our blue hair phase, black hair phase, earrings and gauges, lip rings, eyebrow rings. In fact, in that top picture you can see the lip ring. None of that phased me in the least. I've always told my kids that I don't care how they look as long as they're good. They also know that no matter how much it shouldn't matter to others how they look; it does. People judge you on looks and guess what? Jake couldn't find a job until he lost the dyed hair, ear gauges and lip ring. He's got a tattoo now…it's the Methodist cross and flame. I told him he should have paid more money for it, it's already fading haha.

    Raising him wasn't just hard on me, even though I cried an ocean of tears over him. My parents were right there with me fretting and praying for him to just stop being out of control. His dad and my new husband were there, we all had to agree that he had to learn that being an adult doesn't just mean getting to have sex or going to the mall anytime you want.
    Hang tough, sister, your daughter is going to pull through and you will too.

  84. dear anonymous, (8:47)
    Believe me, we had our blue hair phase, black hair phase, earrings and gauges, lip rings, eyebrow rings. In fact, in that top picture you can see the lip ring. None of that phased me in the least. I've always told my kids that I don't care how they look as long as they're good. They also know that no matter how much it shouldn't matter to others how they look; it does. People judge you on looks and guess what? Jake couldn't find a job until he lost the dyed hair, ear gauges and lip ring. He's got a tattoo now…it's the Methodist cross and flame. I told him he should have paid more money for it, it's already fading haha.

    Raising him wasn't just hard on me, even though I cried an ocean of tears over him. My parents were right there with me fretting and praying for him to just stop being out of control. His dad and my new husband were there, we all had to agree that he had to learn that being an adult doesn't just mean getting to have sex or going to the mall anytime you want.
    Hang tough, sister, your daughter is going to pull through and you will too.

  85. I love this post and makes me feel no so alone; that there are other parents out there like me who are not to afraid to talk about it. We always took responsibility for our child and watched as other parents did not (as their kids robbed their homes of their alcohol – how could they miss it???). Our kids were in cahoots together, yet the other parent would blame the other kid. I know so many parents who think the sun rises and sets on thier kid's head and refuse to thing that their darling angel would do anything wrong …. when they do/did. Like MK Gregory says, those parents blamed everyone else, it can't be their kid. I have had the excuse from parents and teachers that "this kid gets straight A's – they would never do this!". Lord. Wrong. You're kid is selling drugs in school, binging on the weekends and robo-tripping! Paleeze.

    I have a teen. She herself is a good person. I've been there done that from goth to home-made tattoos, you name it. No matter what rules we set, they were broken. I blame myself for alot because I was not always the perfect parent. I caved a lot. My story is a long one but I think everyone has heard one like it so I will stop there. My daughter is taking baby steps and we see some light at the end of the tunnel. By no way is it perfect.

    I am so happy that Jake manned-up and turned into a fine young man. This chokes me up. Sometimes teens, as much as we hate it, have to go through things on their own. My husband and I welcomed the blue hairs into our house, etc and they were nice kids. Just a little lost. They all respected us, waaay more than the "perfects" as they are called in high school. (I also have a "perfect-stayed-out-of-trouble teen too so I see both sides). After personal exhaustion and years of trying, we basically did what you did Krystal. You want this and that? Get a job. We are still waiting on the job to come….but there is hope.

  86. I love this post and makes me feel no so alone; that there are other parents out there like me who are not to afraid to talk about it. We always took responsibility for our child and watched as other parents did not (as their kids robbed their homes of their alcohol – how could they miss it???). Our kids were in cahoots together, yet the other parent would blame the other kid. I know so many parents who think the sun rises and sets on thier kid's head and refuse to thing that their darling angel would do anything wrong …. when they do/did. Like MK Gregory says, those parents blamed everyone else, it can't be their kid. I have had the excuse from parents and teachers that "this kid gets straight A's – they would never do this!". Lord. Wrong. You're kid is selling drugs in school, binging on the weekends and robo-tripping! Paleeze.

    I have a teen. She herself is a good person. I've been there done that from goth to home-made tattoos, you name it. No matter what rules we set, they were broken. I blame myself for alot because I was not always the perfect parent. I caved a lot. My story is a long one but I think everyone has heard one like it so I will stop there. My daughter is taking baby steps and we see some light at the end of the tunnel. By no way is it perfect.

    I am so happy that Jake manned-up and turned into a fine young man. This chokes me up. Sometimes teens, as much as we hate it, have to go through things on their own. My husband and I welcomed the blue hairs into our house, etc and they were nice kids. Just a little lost. They all respected us, waaay more than the "perfects" as they are called in high school. (I also have a "perfect-stayed-out-of-trouble teen too so I see both sides). After personal exhaustion and years of trying, we basically did what you did Krystal. You want this and that? Get a job. We are still waiting on the job to come….but there is hope.

  87. Teenagers are hard, and all too often parents enable them by assuming their bad behavior is someone else's fault. Good for you for taking responsibility for your son and holding him accountable for his actions! He'll be a better man because of it and you can feel so proud!
    :)MK

  88. Teenagers are hard, and all too often parents enable them by assuming their bad behavior is someone else's fault. Good for you for taking responsibility for your son and holding him accountable for his actions! He'll be a better man because of it and you can feel so proud!
    :)MK

  89. Courtney – about those time outs. We're studying the story of Jonah and one of the ladies in my small group who has toddlers said God put Jonah in the whale for a "time out"! That led to a discussion about whether we should open cans of tuna or anchovies or sardines and surround the 'time-out' place in our homes, so the kids will know that GOD put them in time-out, and mom is just His instrument…

  90. Courtney – about those time outs. We're studying the story of Jonah and one of the ladies in my small group who has toddlers said God put Jonah in the whale for a "time out"! That led to a discussion about whether we should open cans of tuna or anchovies or sardines and surround the 'time-out' place in our homes, so the kids will know that GOD put them in time-out, and mom is just His instrument…

  91. Krystal,
    I love this story so very much. And though my son is only 2 and we have another boy on the way, it was a much needed reminder after a tough day yesterday of hitting the record amount of time outs. I plan to print this, tuck it away and bring it out during the 'blue hair' phase.

    Thank you!
    Courtney

  92. Krystal,
    I love this story so very much. And though my son is only 2 and we have another boy on the way, it was a much needed reminder after a tough day yesterday of hitting the record amount of time outs. I plan to print this, tuck it away and bring it out during the 'blue hair' phase.

    Thank you!
    Courtney

  93. "Miss Molly" … can you email me if you get a chance? Got a couple questions for ya.
    Love, G

  94. "Miss Molly" … can you email me if you get a chance? Got a couple questions for ya.
    Love, G

  95. Yes, SLM, I agree. Krystal for president.

  96. Yes, SLM, I agree. Krystal for president.

  97. Krystal, you rock. And I love you. And I love this post.

  98. Krystal, you rock. And I love you. And I love this post.

  99. Krystal, thank you SO MUCH for sharing this. You persevered loving that boy when he was doing his best to make himself unlovable. And it wasn't easy and you just kept putting one foot in front of the other. I salute you!

    HUGE congratulations to you and hubs for staying the very hard course before he left and when he returned!

    Krystal for president!

  100. Krystal, thank you SO MUCH for sharing this. You persevered loving that boy when he was doing his best to make himself unlovable. And it wasn't easy and you just kept putting one foot in front of the other. I salute you!

    HUGE congratulations to you and hubs for staying the very hard course before he left and when he returned!

    Krystal for president!

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