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Can you handle me?


I feel that the confusion inside of me

My doubts and fears,

Would shock you

If I brought them out.


I know you know

All of that exists,

And you know it exists in me,

But you would rather,

Let it all remain anonymous.


And so I am alone

With my uncertainty about God,

My preoccupations with sex in a sex-orientated world,

My worries about my education and future,

The ambiguous relationship to you,

And the difficulties with my friends.


I know you are afraid to become vulnerable:

You would be embarrassed

To see another side of me

And to show another side of yourself;

And you don’t want our relationship to change

Even though it is phony in parts;

And above all

You want everything to remain predicatable

Because you love your peace too dearly.


And so I have very little choice

But to keep everything inside of me

To try to work it out



But if you let me talk,

If you invited me to talk

And could listen

Without being shocked

Without remaining aloof for your protection

Without immediately having all the answers

(even though I think you have answers

And good ones too)

Without playing therole of the knwoing parent,

If you could enter into the process of my life

And be beside me,


That would mark the passage

From father/son to father/friend

And we could see each other in a new way:


We would be brothers.


Ulrich Schaffer

For the Love of Children

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