Snuggles and Tears Chapter 4

Cathy Fenton sat sipping coffee at her kitchen table. She was worried. For Sharon to call her at ten O’clock at night to come over to talk was certainly not the norm. It had happened only once before, when Sharon was really having a problem dealing with the results of her decision to “wait and see” with Billy’s growth.
Sharon had taken her pediatrician’s advice and was devastated when it turned out to be the wrong thing to do. Cathy had finally managed to get Sharon to see that it wasn’t her fault. She explained that while most people think doctors are super human and know all there is to know about the body, they were really just like us and didn’t get everything right one hundred percent of the time. Cathy also reminded her of how devastated Dr. Layton was when he found out what the problem really was. The entire Layton family had come to see Cathy to help understand the best way to cope with Billy’s medical problems. Cathy really enjoyed being a psychologist. She and Sharon had become fast friends through their therapy sessions.
The doorbell brought Cathy back to reality with a start. She grabbed a napkin and quickly wiped up the coffee she spilled and then hurried to answer the door. As she opened the door it was clear that Sharon and Rick were upset. “Hi you two, come in and please tell me what this is all about.” she said.
Sharon took Cathy’s hands in hers as soon as the door was closed. “Oh Cathy…” she sobbed giving up on getting control of her emotions. “It was heartbreaking! He was so upset…” she couldn’t get any more out.
“Who was upset?” Cathy asked as she held Cathy close.
“Billy.” Rick replied.
“What’s wrong?” Cathy asked with obvious concern.
It took about forty minutes for them to describe the events from earlier, each taking over when the other couldn’t continue. Throughout the explanation Cathy just patiently listened.
“What do we do?” asked Sharon. She was finally getting so she could talk about this without breaking down.
“Well…I can’t tell you what to do, but I can help you two figure out what would be best for Billy.” she replied knowing that they both were hoping for more than that. “Besides after what you all have been through, I think you need to be the ones making the decisions here.”
Sharon, while she was hoping for a quick answer to her question was grateful that Cathy was not just jumping into this with a pat answer like “it will pass” or something like that. For her son to be that upset, this was not a scraped knee or the simple results of a name calling contest. This was serious. “Well then, what now.” she asked.
“I guess the first thing I need to do is to reassure you that this is something I have had a bit of experience with. Billy isn’t the only child I have seen that feels this way.” Cathy responded.
“Really? Is it common?” Rick asked, a little surprised.
“I can’t be sure yet.” she answered reassuringly. “From what you’ve told me, there are two possible reasons that Billy would have this desire. First would be common regression brought on by stress, such as the issues with his size and fitting in with kids his age. The second is a bit more involved.”
“Well I don’t think anything out of the ordinary has happened lately.” Sharon offered.
“No new developments? No changes at home or school?” Cathy prompted.
“No. Things are no different than when school started. He and his sister are a bit more difficult but I can’t imagine that that would cause this.”
“I agree with you. It would have to be something emotionally traumatic. How about his health? When did they do blood work last?”
“Two weeks ago at his scheduled appointment.” Rick answered. “All of the blood work was normal.”
“Well that rules out the organic causes.”
“What’s left?” Sharon asked.
“Well…I can’t be sure without talking with Billy, but…he may be what we refer to as an infantilist. It’s not completely uncommon with very intelligent people and with Billy’s IQ in the one twenties he certainly fits.” she replied.
“What is an infantilist?” Sharon responded not sure she wanted to know.
“It’s a person that has a strong desire to have the things of and be treated as a baby.”
“Is that it? After all he did say he wanted to be Mommy’s baby again.”
"I’m not sure and there is no way to be sure without talking to him."Cathy responded.
“So what now?” Rick asked.
“The first thing I suggest is not to jump into anything.” Cathy told them both shifting her gaze from one to the other. “I guess we should figure some things out first.” while looking at Sharon. “The first thing I want you to do is to take a moment and write something down for me.” as she went to the desk in the den to retrieved paper and two pens.
“Why?” asked Rick.
Handing the paper and a pen to Sharon, evading the last question, she told them “I know this is not going to be comfortable, but I want you to write down EXACTLY what you heard Billy say last evening. I want this to be as close to verbatim as possible.”
“Why?” Rick repeated.
“Please just let Sharon write what she heard and you write what you heard and I will explain after.” Cathy repeated as she handed Rick a sheet of lined paper and pen.
For a short time both Rick and Sharon sat at the kitchen table writing. Sharon finished first, wiped tears from her cheeks and handed the document she had been working on to Cathy. Soon after Rick, clearing his throat repeatedly, did the same. Cathy spent some moments reading both documents.
“Is this EXACTLY what you heard?” she asked Sharon.
“Yes.” was Sharon’s only reply.
Turning to Rick she asked “And this is EXACTLY what you heard?”
“As near as I can remember.” he responded.
“I will be right back, I’m just going to make copies of these.” Cathy told them as she got up and walked out of the room leaving them with the words of their little boy fresh in their minds. “OK.” she said when she returned to her seat and handed a copy of the papers to their respective authors. “I want you to understand something. I had you write this out because I want you to keep those with you for now. Carry them on your person. This may get difficult in the near future and I want to be sure you remember why you’re trying to understand this and figure out how to help Billy. I have found in the past that sometimes it’s not enough to want to help your child just because he’s your child. Sometimes we need specific reminders. If you find yourself asking yourself why your doing something you decide will help Billy, read what you’ve written tonight.”
“Alright.” Sharon replied with a perplexed expression on her face. “What would make her think I would change my mind?” she thought to herself.
Rick looked at Cathy as if he didn’t understand.
“I guess we need to get to the meat of the problem. Are you two prepared to treat Billy as a baby?” Cathy asked.
Sharon was taken aback by the direct question. She didn’t know exactly how to answer it. The shock of that concept showed clearly on her expression. She glanced over at Rick, looking to see his reaction. She saw a similar expression on his face. Could she really do that?
“Think seriously about that question while I get some more coffee. Would either of you like a cup?” Cathy offered.
“Yes, please. Black” Rick answered.
“Me too but with two sugars please.” Sharon replied.
Rick contemplated Cathy’s question carefully as he thought to himself. “We went to a great deal of trouble to prevent him from regressing. He specifically mentioned having his binky and his blankie back…did he want these things only at home? I hope so. It would be a lot worse for him if one of his classmates saw him with a binky. And…I don’t even want to think about diapers.” he thought. “What would the risks be if we gave him what he wants?” Rick asked as Cathy placed a cup in front of him.
“And what would they be if we don’t?” Sharon added.
“Both very good questions. But unfortunately there is no way to tell without addressing this issue with Billy and seeing his reaction to your decision, whatever it ends up being.” Cathy responded. “I think the best way to figure this out is to break it down to specifics. How do each of you feel about Billy having his binky?”
Sharon immediately said “If it will help him, then I have no problem with that.”
“Outside the house?” Sharon asked.
“That’s a hard one.” Rick replied.
“I understand, it would be embarrassing to be seen with your nine year old son nursing on a pacifier.” Cathy offered.
“No, that’s not it. I wouldn’t give a damn if folks saw him with a binky, except that if anyone from his school saw that I don’t think it would help him.” Rick explained. “Not to mention that he could easily pass for a four year old or even a large three year old.”
Sharon felt ashamed for a moment. She had thought the same as Cathy about Rick’s initial response to the question. Worse yet she had felt as Cathy had assumed Rick felt about it. The more she thought about it, the more she knew that yes perhaps it would be uncomfortable for her at first being in public while Billy took a binky, but she would deal with it if it would help Billy.
“OK. What about his blanket?” Cathy continued.
Rick was first to respond with “That shouldn’t be a big issue in or out of the house.”
Sharon was quick to agree with him.
“That makes that easy. Now to a harder one.” Cathy said. “What if he wants a bottle instead of a cup?”
Sharon hesitated. It seemed that each question got more difficult to answer. “Honestly, I don’t know. At home, no problem. But outside the house? I don’t know if I could deal with that.” she responded staring at the floor.
Cathy immediately responded with “At least your being honest with me, and with yourself.”
“It’s alright honey.” Rick said reaching over to take her hand.
Sharon didn’t know if he was trying to make her feel better, or telling her it should be OK with her if Billy nursed on a bottle in public so she didn’t respond but squeezed his hand gently to show her appreciation for his gesture.
“And now for the really difficult one. What about diapers?” Cathy resumed.
Sharon was first to respond with “Would he just want to wear them? Or would he want to use them as well?”.
“Both good questions.” Cathy answered. She then turned to Rick with an expectant look.
"Well, I wasn’t really fond of the diaper stage the first time, but I think if it would help him I could deal with it.
“It wouldn’t be the worst thing that ever happened.” Sharon put in.
“Well, those are the biggie issues. And if I am understand you correctly, you have said that if Billy wants to wear diapers, drink from a bottle, take a pacifier and snuggle with a blanket neither of you would be opposed to it. Am I right?” Cathy asked.
Both Rick and Sharon nodded their heads in agreement.
“Good. I didn’t misunderstand you then.” Cathy answered to their gesture. She always liked to repeat the answers to any question to avoid any unpleasantness later. People tend to remember only what they want to remember when faced with a difficult question and getting them to confirm their answers was a simple way to avoid difficulties later down the road. “Want some advice?” She asked both of them.
“Of course we do, you don’t even have to ask that.” Sharon complained.
“I don’t think you should let Billy decide on some of these issues.” Cathy offered.
“Why not?” They both asked at the same time.
“There are a couple of reasons. First, Billy may hear you say it’s OK, but in his heart he may not believe you. I have seen this before. Second, Billy apparently knows he needs these things, but he most probably doesn’t know why. If he doesn’t know why, then he probably feels that he is wrong or an outcast because he has come to a point where he can’t just follow along with what he believes first society, but more importantly, you two expect from him. This can be a very difficult position to be in. By not giving him the choice, you give him permission to accept these things because it is not his choice.”
“Oh…I didn’t think of it that way.” Sharon replied.
“Nor did I.” Rick added. “So what should we and what shouldn’t we leave up to him?”
“Well I would let him decide if he wants his pacifier, his blanket or his bottle back. And whether he uses them outside the home.” She answered. “But I wouldn’t give him any choice about the diapers except whether he wants to wear them or not. If he chooses to wear them, require that it be day and night, twentyfour seven. And on second thought, the first time he wears them shouldn’t be left up to him either. I would put him in them for a day and tell him that after the first day, it would be up to him to wear them or not. I would also put a stipulation that if he decides that he wants to stop wearing them, that it would put an end to the opportunity from that point forward. He would not be given the option to start wearing them again. Last I would make it clear to him that he was not to take them off or to attempt to change himself.”
“I don’t understand.” said Sharon.
“Well, these rules will help to determine if he is serious about his desire to be babied, or if this is just a passing thing. If he must wear and use them all the time, then he’ll get tired of it fast if this is just a phase.”
“hmmm…I didn’t think about that.” Rick said. “But it does make sense.”
“And if this isn’t just a phase?” Sharon asked with concern in her voice.
Cathy responded with “Lets just get through what we know now. Lets not borrow any more worry as my mother used to say.”
“Uh oh…” Rick said.
“What?” Sharon replied.
“What about Becky and all of this?” he answered.
“I’m glad you mentioned that Rick,” Cathy stated. "Billy is and should be an important part of your lives, but you do have responsibilities to both Becky and to yourselves and each other. It won’t help Billy to give him what he thinks he needs only to have your family torn apart because of it.
“I hadn’t thought of Becky,” Sharon admitted sheepishly. “but I don’t think she will cause problems.”
“Are you sure we are talking about the same child?” Rick responded incredulously.
“Yes.” Sharon answered slapping him playfully on the arm. “Trust me, I think this will go a lot easier than you’re thinking it will with Becky. After all, she calls him a baby almost every day. I think she will be fine.”
“If you say so.” Rick responded.
“Trust me, It’s a female thing.” Sharon offered. All three of them got a chuckle out of that.
“OK, so what now?” Rick asked.
“Well two things, I think.” Cathy replied. “First I would wait until Christmas Eve to broach this issue with Billy. It would make this a very special holiday for him. And second, I think you need to go shopping for your baby boy.” She said with a smile.
“Oh…wonderful…shopping.” Rick grumbled.
“Why is it so hard for a man to enjoy shopping?” Sharon asked Cathy with a smirk.
“I don’t think we have the time to discuss that tonight.” Cathy said with a laugh. “But if I know you, this will be the best Christmas you’ve had in a long time.” looking at Sharon.
“Come on Sharon, what woman doesn’t want a second chance to baby her youngest?” Cathy laughed again.
“Well…there is that.” Sharon conceded with a blush.
“At least he’s small enough still to make it physically easier.” Rick added. “When do you want to do the shopping?” he asked looking at his wife and after a moment’s pause finished with. “Oh all right.” as he sighed.
“Walmart is open twenty four hours a day after all.” Sharon said sheepishly.


Snuggles and Tears Chapter 4

ok a few things first and foremost its a good idea to space your paragraphs. it makes it easier on the reader, i didnt believe in it when i first came here but it really does help. try and leave a blank line after every paragraph.

“Well…I can’t be sure without talking with Billy, but…he may be what we refer to as an infantilist. It’s not completely uncommon with very intelligent people and with Billy’s IQ in the one twenties he certainly fits.” i didnt like this line at all. it feels like your trying to butter up this whole community.

the biggest problem i had with this chapter is cathy. i find it very unprobable and unrealistic of a psychologist to recomend theese things, it takes from the story which feels so real to have something that could never happen come up.

I will still follow this story but i really felt dissapointed with the whole psycologist thing.

Snuggles and Tears Chapter 4

Thank you for taking the time to read this!

You’re right. I will make this change with the next chapter.

This isn’t pandering, this is fact. Statistically, more than 90% of all reported infantilists are male and more than 80% have an IQ above the norm. Lastly, I was that nine year old with an IQ in the 120’s.

I guess now would be a good time to explain that I was Billy. While the medical condition was different and I had more than one sibling, essentially you are reading a personal history. Don’t misunderstand, I have added or subtracted some things for the story’s sake, but this is pretty much what happened. From what my parents told me later, our psychologist gave the same advice you read here.

I appreciate the time you took to offer critique. Unfortunately, as they say, “sometimes truth is stranger than fiction”.

Snuggles and Tears Chapter 4

I’m intrigued about your life BB… sounds like an intersting and event filled one.

I actually like the input of the psycologist. It was a way of stating what needed or might be done to help Billy without making it sound too lame, it wasn’t overly blantant as some stories have been when discussing the “babification” process.

The convertations between the characters seem natural.
8/10 … marks off for the hard to read paragraphing …hehehe :stuck_out_tongue:


Good story, thanks for sharing