When to Stop…? Friday Fictioneers.

“You can’t put me in a box,” Ava spat at her mother. “Why can’t you be normal, and not a shrink?”

Ava didn’t want to be seen, let alone analysed, and slammed her door shut.

Sarah stared at the closed door wondering  how her precious, much-loved baby girl had turned into this fragile, self-loathing teen.

Inside, Ava was painting all four walls of her room black, and was thinking about cutting off her tongue, so she’d never have to talk again. Why couldn’t her mother give up, and just let her drown quietly in peace?!

Finally, Sarah made the call.


100 words

This has been another contribution to Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wishoff-Fields. PHOTO PROMPT © Jean L. Hays.

As a mother of a 16 year old son and a 14 year old daughter, I’m well-versed in living with teens, although mine are going quite well atm. Well, at least I think they’re going okay. Our daughter’s madly catching up with all her friends in case we we end up going back into lock down. Sydney and Melbourne have always been rivals, but now more than ever those Victorians can stay South of the border.

I hope you and yours are keeping safe and well.

Best wishes,



27 thoughts on “When to Stop…? Friday Fictioneers.

  1. Tannille

    Such realism. Reminds me of Freaky Friday… 😀

    Keep safe and enjoy “normality” while you can. I think most of Australia is peeved with Melbourne at the moment… or rather their government. Perth is in a good place but for how long. Footballers and FIFOers are getting social treatment not having to quarantine. Will only take one infected Easterner… Ugh… Hard to keep positive. All we can do is laugh at the insanity as our leaders worry more about their popularity and the economy.

  2. Rowena Post author

    When I wrote this story, Linda, I was so immersed in the story that I’d forgotten you’d most likely be reading it. Last year, the high school held meetings for parents mostly geared around emotionally supporting your teen through their last years at school, especially the final exams which we call the High School Certificate (HSC). They referred to “the normal range of teenage behaviour”. This turned out to have a much broader scope than I’d expected. It was very helpful to get their perspective because they’re interacting with hundred of teens year after year and they no doubt get a good feel for when things are heading South. We’ve had a few very intense moments here, and quite a few when I was growing up and there was one night where a friend of mine turned up with pockets full of pills to a party and her mother had to take her off to get her stomach pumped. My mother was playing the organ at church the following morning and that was her last time at the morning service. Decided life was too unpredictable to be on duty like that on a Sunday morning.
    I’ve een thinking of that friend and her mother a bit these days as we’ve been tracking down our daughter. I remember my friend’s mum pulling up in her car almost omnipresent when we were off to do something dubious. My husband and I are now sharing that role ourselves. It’s weird now that the shoe is on the other foot but that subtle omnipresence seems good idea.
    I hope you are keeping well.
    Best wishes,

  3. Rowena Post author

    I remember when I was living in WA, all bad things, problems, trouble, delays, stupidity…all came from “over East”. I don’t think you can get WA without living there. My aunt lives in Freo and she is desperate to travel atm and needs a holiday. I was hoping to get to New Zealand but that’s not looking likely now.
    I was so proud of how well Australia was going with Covid. All these superpowers in the Northern Hemisphere have so much going for them, but we finally had our day when we managed to all but repel covid. I really thought we could get rid of it like NZ and was starting to do the happy dance. Now, it looks like the security guards were having it off with people in hotel lock down. Stupid! Stupid! I could see this being exactly how the virus could spread in Australia.
    Hopefully, the news is only reporting on the outliers whose attempts to flee Melbourne, have have a party feasting on KFC (couldn’t be something gourmet, could it?!!) The lowest common denominator wins out. A triumph for dummer & dummer!!
    Oh dear! I might’ve got just a tad worked up there.
    I don’t know how this is all going to pan out but it wouldn’t surprise me if we were back in lock down soon. Our daughter is out seeing friends all the time atm and went for another sleep over tonight. It is school holidays but even she sees the writing on the wall. She said she wants to see her friends while she can.
    Meanwhile, I caught a cold and and had to lock myself away.
    This whole thing is doing my head in. However, I’ve bought myself a new MX88 Yamaha synthesizer actually from a company in Perth who is shipping it here direct from Victoria. I’m picking piano up again and there’s also my WWI research. It’s going really well so hopefully by the end of the year, I’ll have a book draft ready to go.
    I’ll be thinking of you and hope WA stays good.
    Best wishes,

  4. Tannille

    I feel exactly like you. So easy to get worked up. I started coming out of isolation, believing “thank god Australia has this under control”. The only good thing about WA is generally we don’t exist, so the East don’t care so much about our boarder control and how the state runs (as long as they get their GST). But it only takes one to infect a city. We have a football match tonight… Melbourne players… Ugh. Oh well at least it isn’t KFC haha.

    Good luck with the draft. I have the same goal. Must admit motivation and productivity took a hit the past few weeks, I’m ready to focus again. You’re right about it doing heads in. Keep busy, sounds like you are.

    We’ll get through this. 😀

  5. Bernadette Braganza

    I understand the painting the walls black part (if I had my way I’d paint my walls purple), but I think cutting her tongue is a bit far from ‘normal’ teen behaviour. Maybe she did need a doctor?

  6. Na'ama Yehuda

    ah, sometimes ‘normal’ is what is … though sometimes it can be good to get an objective eye to find out whether a teen’s angst is a bit more than it ought to be … Good one!

  7. subroto

    Even a shrink needs help with teenagers 🙂

    Travelling back to Queensland from Sydney this week it was a quite a sight to see airport staff in Sydney dressed in hazard suits to receive a flight from Melbourne. The sudden increase in cases is a reminder to folks to stop going out and take social distancing more seriously.

  8. Rowena Post author

    Thanks so much for stopping by and it’s great to hear from you. Isn’t it crazy atm?!!! We still have all the usual teenage stuff going on and then having Covid on top of that and the kids needing to be absolutely vigilant due to my health is trying. I am trying to be supermum but feeling totally inadequate. No doubt we all are. Good luck at your end. I’m thinking of you.
    Best wishes,

  9. Rowena Post author

    Ouch! That sounds intense. I hope people start waking up to this virus. Even from a purely economic perspective, it makes sense to isolate to keep this thing under control. If you have a favourite small local business, do you still want it to be there in six months? Do you want to be the one who passes it onto someone you love and kills them or makes them really sick or just stuck in iso for two weeks? I often feel like a lone voice calling out from the wilderness, although I know a lot of other people are also taking this seriously and are doing the right thing.
    Best wishes,

  10. New Journey

    Teenagers, my daughter went through her rebellious stage in Italy away from home, thank goodness, lol, She was visiting cousins staying at aunts houses, (on her dads side) She was never very rebellious, but she did come home with a “goth look”, the dark, dyed red hair, that was hard enough to get used to, she also used really dark, not quite black lipstick, and her eyes, well there is no way to explain it but she looked very much like a skeleton, She has very fair skin and all that eyeliner and dark colors around her eyes, LOL she had picked up several of the habits they allow over there for there teenagers that, well at least I do not let, She was 17 and came back after a long summer vacation, I was so excited to see her, I barely got a hug as she strutted in to the house. LOL I look back and can laugh now but then I was fear stricken. We sat down for a nice meal and at the end of it she asked where the vodka was? LOL I said we don’t have any, well you must get some was her response, in Italy we always finished a meal with a shot of vodka to help with digestion. That wasn’t going to happen I thought. I didn’t ague just let that hang in the air. She said she was going out with her friends, that was fine, I went up stairs to do something, her bedroom door was open so I stepped in and on her bed was, what I thought a tube top. I picked it up and said how cute it was, she informed it was a dress not a top. She wore it when she went out in Italy LOL all I could do was laugh, she terrible offended by this and thought I was being unfair. It was at that time I had to tell her what I though of her new look. She didn’t take it well, She went out in pants and a top, covering most of her body, I went got the “tube dress” and hid it while she was out, LOL she never asked for it either. She came home, went to bed and the next morning asked if I was willing to help her get her hair dyed back, this was permeant red dye, LOL so I was guessing her friends were as shocked as I was, you see, she never wore make up, a little lipstick that was all. SO the make up went in the garbage, she got her hair cut shorted and dyed to a darker version of her real color and my daughter had returned to the loving young girl I knew and loved. Thank goodness for honest friends, she is still friends with them all, and I hope they get good laughs out of that, as for her and I, we never speak of it. She was correct on the indigestion part, but as I told her, when she turned 21 she could drink all the vodka after dinner she could want. LOL That was the only teenage problem with her, but my son was born a teenager I think, LOL his stories go on and on and on. I am pretty sure that the teenage years were meant to help toughen us up for when they leave the nest of home. XXkat

  11. Gary A Wilson

    We too were blessed with teenagers who, while firmly having their own opinions about everything, stayed sane and mostly compliant with our efforts to keep them alive and well-raised. We may have accidentally succeeded.

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