When people ask why I don't do outings with both boys together, I am hard-pressed to explain. Do they egg each other on? Is it because they set each other off? Um, sort of. Yes. Not exactly.
It has something to do with the extreme difficulty of having two closely-bonded, yet incredibly socially-inept children.
Recently before our daily phone call to Hart, I cautioned Jeff, "Hart has been having a rough time. We must really try to help him feel better."
So Jeff obediently took the phone, and without preamble said, "I got two new cool things this weekend."
SIGH. At least now, this kind of interaction is played out in two different zip codes. When both boys were here with me, no matter how angry, hysterical, or unhinged one was (or even, both were), they insisted on being in the same room, ideally occupying the same square meter of space.
I have tried to help Jeff make kinder, more empathic and socially-aware choices--if you were sad, would hearing that make you feel better or worse?--Jeff understands, but the concept doesn't stick.