Lost best friend: very long, and venting
On Friday my wife and I invited our friend and her son over (husband was at a legislative committee meeting that ran late) as well as my best friend, his wife and their children over (2 1/2yrs and 1 month). We've been thinking for awhile that their older son is autistic. He used to say all of 3 words, now he says 1 word. He does not play or interact with other kids, or even adults (including his own parents) really and has a number of other autism spectrum behavors. They still haven't taken him in to visit a speech or behavior specialist...though the wife claims if things don't get better in a month or two with the speech they probably will (DENIAL MUCH!). The best friend also hasn't gotten any from his wife in a good year (since baby number 2 was conceived), so I can see how this puts you in a bad mood on top of probably realizing at least on an unconcious level you are about to get the worst news of your life (that your older child is flagged for autism/is autistic, and right now does not seem to be high functioning).
Well they come over. At first everything is fine. The kids are down in the basement playing (our sons almost 4, almost 2 friend's son almost 4, and BF's son 2 1/2). No supervision as, well the older two play together all the time and don't need it, my younger son plays with his brother all the time and doesn't need it, and BF and wife don't seem to feel their son needs supervision (we pop down every once in awhile to make sure things are fine).
Just before dinner we here a crash and Liam (BF's son) crying. My son and the other almost 4yr old come up stairs and we get a story that the other one hit Liam (wasn't my fault, Colin did it. Wasn't my fault, Jack did it). Finally pry out of my son that he hit Liam with a big toy, but it seemed like it was an accident, might have been onpurpose (but not malicious) (the next day he changes his story to a more believable, he throw a toy bulldozer (plastic, about 10 inches long) and it accidently hit Liam). He isn't even 4, hitting happens sometimes and most of the time it isn't something malicious. Its that age.
Well Liam ended up with a pretty good bruise under his eye and on his forehead. So he obvious got hit pretty good. 60 seconds later though he is just fine, no crying, doesn't seem to be bothering him.
My friend seems pretty pissed. After the long talk with my son, I put him in time out, had him apologize, apologize myself, etc. Friend still seems pretty pissed. After dinner the kids are playing in the basement again (this time I am supervising). My friend comes down and about 4 minutes later Jack picks up the toy and is swiging it around (not trying to hit anyone, just swinging it). It take it away from him and tell him he should know better and after what happened, he deffinitely lost privillages to play with that toy. My friend asks, "Is that what Jack hit him with?". My response, "I'm not sure, but I think so".
Its one of those toys you push around with pegs sticking out of it that makes noise (about 18 inches long, 6 inch long 3 inch around wooden cylinder on the end, yeah it would hurt getting smacked with it).
My friend's immediate response.
"Your son is lucky I wasn't down here when it happened, or I would have commited a felony."
My response, stunned is he joking, "uhhhh...uhuh."
"No really, I would have torn his arms off. I would have killed him."
"He's damned lucky I wasn't around. I would have maimed him in an instant and there wouldn't have been any stopping me".
Figuring he probably isn't joking at this point, and I think seeing that I am a little less than amussed at him threatening to seriously injure or kill my not even 4 year old child who did something unfortunate (and probably an accident) and totally not age inappropriate, he goes upstairs.
Apparently, and I couldn't really hear, he repeated the exact same rant to my wife. His wife basically tells him if he is that angry, why doesn't he just get Liam, go wait in the car and they'd leave. Which he does a minute or two later (taking about 5 minutes to sooth his son out of the basement as his son completely ignores his existance until he tried to take a car away from Liam he was playing with, which lead to an immediate melt down, pretty healthy does of autism signs there).
Not even a single word to me or my wife or anyone else. The wife acts pretty damned embaressed about the whole thing.
So at this point I haven't heard from my friend at all and the wife is trying to act like it didn't happen (so it seems. Though not exactly like I've talked to her and my wife has merely had a couple of comments from the friend's wife on her facebook page, completely unrelated to the incident).
Frankly I've written the friend off. He's been my best friend since Freshman year of high school (so 14 years now). However, dude, you threatened to kill or seriously injure my kid and not even in a midly joking way. You did that over what seemed like it could have easily been an accident (no one was there to see it, your kid can't tell us what happened and two not even 4 year olds are not reliable witnesses, and neither seemed to think it was on purpose) and is age appropriate (young kids hit mostly accidently, sometimes on purpose), though not good. Its not like your kid ended up in the hospital. Its not like my kid held yours down and beat him or tortured him. Its not even like my kid was 10 years old and hit him (not age appropriate in that case). At best I am willing to consider continuing the friendship if I can get a good heartfelt apology, but even then, there is no fuzzy way in fluffy hell I am trusting you anywhere near my kids alone. Probably ever. I get he is going through a lot (has put on at least 30lbs since I saw him over the summer, so now he has a bit of a gut which he never has had before, to me one more sign of how depressed he is). However, I can't excuse threatening a little kid, barely older than a toddler with death/serious injury, especially not when it is my kid. I am mildly sad at the loss of the friend, but a lot more upset over his actions. I am most deffinitely not willing to "reach out" to my friend looking for an apology or anything else like that. He needs to figure out just how damned inappropriate his actions were (last I checked, his "threatening death" (and pretty obviously meaning it) is a crime in most/all states, assault).
Mostly I was venting, but does anyone have any thoughts?