Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Disorderly Conduct

To begin with, it is not a conversation about the culpability of the victim. It is not about what she is wearing or what she is doing, or what she might have done before. It is a conversation about making good choices and always knowing where you are and what you are doing.

Last weekend the house next to ours was occupied by a herd of men in their twenties, in town for a golf weekend. Friday night they rolled home around 2:00 a.m., all driving, and all clearly drunk beyond any reasonable measure of fun. They poured out of their cars and into the street, our driveway, our yard, their yard and whatever other space they could loudly occupy in our quiet little town. From my window I peeked cautiously at the madness happening outside. Getting out of a car, parked at the end of our drive, were three young girls, all giggling and screaming and enjoying their wild night, and all, from my view, well potted. They were whisked into the growing party by several of the men.

Back to bed, back to trying to fall asleep, back to staring at the ceiling, and now worrying. The celebration went on until 5:00 a.m. when a crowd gathered at the end of the driveway, a fight over who knows what, that thankfully ended before anyone was hurt, and was perhaps the impetus for them to finally be quiet. When I got up, two hours later, the girls' car was gone.

So many things could have gone wrong but thankfully it seems, as far as we know, none of them did. The lesson, for me, is to teach my girls about making good choices. Putting yourself, your drinking self, in a house full of drunk men, is not a good choice, no more so than walking down an alley at night in Chicago. It's not about blame but about keeping yourself in a safe place, trusting your instincts, and keeping your instincts sober enough to have a voice.

The problem of drunk driving is not lost on me, its just not my focus here. That they were all drinking and driving clearly only escalates the situation.

1 comment:

Suz said...

It is your job to instruct them
They learn inner controls to make good choices from you and yours
You are a good mama
I am so glad nothing happened that night, because we know in Chicago it can
I am so glad my daughter moved away to the suburbs...'cause I used to have to drive through Uptown to get to her house


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