Hey, you pompous little asshole, I was sleeping. Do you know how precious few hours of sleep a middle-aged woman gets in a night? I had finally reached a REM state after two hours of lying awake in my perimenopause-induced anxiety fog, and you’re going to wake me up because you think you got somethin’ to say to me?

What’s that? “The morning sun really shows my age”? Wow. Thanks, Rod. Real classy. You know what else that morning sun really highlights? Your tiny, tiny penis.

Are you acting out some break-up fantasy you’ve cooked up in your little head, where you storm out of here and leave me all alone because you feel like a first-class fool? Because I’ve got news for you, turns out forty is the new thirty, and middle-aged women are living their best lives. So you can do all the storming out you want. I’ve got my dog, my wine, my self-help books, Brene Brown, and Oprah—all of whom are hell of a lot better company than you. Next week I will take my girls’ trip to Napa, where we will drink lots of wine and laugh uproariously about the ridiculous men in our lives, and lucky you, you get to be at the top of that list.

Anyway, I’ve got a few “somethin’s” of my own to say to you. First of all, I’m a woman, so I’m good at providing free emotional labor. I was trying to be a good friend, maybe lend a guiding hand, when you were whining about wanting to drop out of school. You seemed sad, so I went to give you a hug, which you apparently interpreted as something more. I’m like, what the hell? Okay, he’s cute, whatever. I mean, props to me for wearing you out, but I think you’re reading way too much into this thing.

Secondly, you feel like YOU’RE being used? I’m the one with an unemployed twenty-two-year-old poet/student/singer/pool player living in my house. You know how I pay for that house? With an actual grown-up job that pays me an actual grown-up paycheck. Sure, your earnest lovemaking kept me amused, but you know what I should have coaxed from you? A rent check.

And please, spare me your deep poetic metaphors. God, you twenty-somethings are so emotional. I didn’t steal your soul or your heart—contrary to popular Puritan beliefs, single women in their forties are not necessarily witches. And I didn’t wreck YOUR bed. May I remind you whose bed we are sleeping in and whose money paid for that bed? And please don’t refer to yourself as a “blind fool,” that’s super offensive to the visually impaired. Even this old lady knows that.

Oh, and regarding your thoughts about the next steps in your life. Why, why, why are you telling me these things? I could not care less whether you go back to school, make a living out of playing pool (sure, buddy, great idea—you’re basically Paul Newman!), or find yourself a rock ’n’ roll band. The last two definitely seem like ideas you just pulled out of your ass or examples of extreme white male hubris and confidence, but you do you, sweetie.

The last few months have been amusing, and I wish you luck in your future endeavors. Do you need bus fare to get on back to school? And don’t forget to collect your books!

And P.S. You know my name’s Margaret, right? We role-played that “sailor come home” fantasy game ONE TIME.