Many would handle this situation in different ways. What would your solution be?
“Her parents have a lot of problems. I know that you two know that they have problems, though you’re not clear on what those problems are.”
“It’s alcohol related isn’t it? You’re father and I knew it.” Mandy’s mother said with such certainty in her voice. Perhaps maybe they’d be okay with it; however Rebecca knew that a meth addiction was much worse. She crept up a couple more stairs.
“No, no it’s not alcohol related, unfortunately it’s much worse than that.” Mandy said her next sentence so quietly that Rebecca could barely hear it.
“Her father is a meth addict and her mouth addicted to cough syrup.”
The sentence cut through Rebecca’s stomach like a rusty blade, she could feel her heart sinking into her intestines.
“That’s why she trashed Rebecca’s room; because I think that she must’ve thought that Rebecca had hidden her bottle of cough syrup in there.”
It sounded as though Mandy’s mother had clapped her hand to her mouth.
“Given what I’ve seen with the dynamics of her family, I was wondering if she could stay with us until she goes off to college.”
“No, absolutely not.”
“No Mandy, I know that she’s your best friend but she can’t move in here.”
“It would only be six or seven months tops.”
“Six months wouldn’t be too bad Jack”
“It’s not a matter of time Veronica.”
“Then what is it dad? I thought you guys loved Rebecca and that you loved having her here.”
“We do love her and we love having her here, but with two drug addicts, and one of them being on meth it’s too much of a risk on our part. What if they want her back? Or they do something crazy. Mandy you know how very unpredictable meth addicts are, you’ve seen enough of them at the hospital.”
“So what are we supposed to do just stand back and hope that he won’t have a psychotic mood swing and try to kill her?”
“We’ll call CPS.”
“No then she’ll be put into foster care.”
“Then you tell me what to do Mandy.”
Rebecca heard a loud thud, it sounded like Mandy’s father had pounded his fist on the kitchen table.
“Is that why she’s over here almost every night?” Mandy’s father shouted.
“Shh! You’ll wake the kids honey.”
Oh no. Were they going to kick her out? Rebecca felt vomit rise from her stomach to the top of her neck, she tried to calm herself down while at the same time trying to hear the discussion, turned argument between Mandy and her folks.
“Sometimes she really needed a place to go.”
“How often is sometimes Mandy?”
“Three or four days a week, but it was just the night.”
Rebecca heard Mandy’s father sigh and could imagine him shaking his head from irritant.
“Sweetheart, if, if life is truly that bad for Rebecca to the point where she seeks safety and shelter from a friend and her family, then perhaps it’s best for CPS to get involved.”
“No mom, life could be even worse for her then than it is now. You know how those homes are. Besides she’ll be of age soon”
“She can stay here on nights that she really needs to, but she is not allowed to move in, so don’t come begging me to let her.”
“And if I ever see anything bad like a broken bone or an open wound I’m calling CPS, and that’s that. Am I clear?”
“Yes dad thanks.”