Friday, November 14, 2008

Case of Tourette’s Complicates “Do As I Say” Rule

Carson City, NV – As a general rule John Gardner is a good stepfather to his new wife’s teenaged sons. He is fair and strictly adheres to the rules of the house, not wanting to disrupt the effective system of discipline, which has served the boys so well.

 However, Gardner has Tourette’s syndrome, a neuropsychiatric disorder that causes uncontrollable tics, both motor and vocal. Gardner displays a relatively rare vocal tic characterized by the shouting of obscenities. This fact makes it difficult for sixteen year old Brian and fourteen year old Peter to observe the long standing “Do as I say” rule.

 “I try to listen to John,” said the distraught Brian. “But it’s hard when he says to do things like ‘f***the Pope.”

 Gardner moved in with the family last year, which inspired a discussion between Mary, Gardner’s new wife, and her sons.

 “I want you to show John the same respect you show me,” Mary told her sons. “Do whatever he tells you to do.”

 Moments later, Gardner expressed his agreement wife the boys’ mother, adding “sh**, f***ers, Coke bottle in the rear.”

 “Except that,” said Mary. “I don’t want any Coke bottles going anywhere weird.”

 The teenage boys were told to use their judgment in determining which directives are legitimate, and which are random interjections resulting from the Tourette’s.

 “I understand that I’m not your father,” Gardner told his stepsons. “But I love your…ass…I mean…f***…your mother…bitch!”