Newbie Here

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by mykidsaremylife84, Oct 9, 2013.

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  1. mykidsaremylife84

    mykidsaremylife84 New Member

    My name is Jamie and I am 28, married with 3 kids. All 3 of my children have birthdays this month. My stepdaughter Shawna turned 7 on Oct 1st, my son Jaycob will be 4 on Oct 16 and my oldest son Bryce will be 8 on Oct 20th. Yes, October is a very busy month for us lol.

    My husband Jayson and I have been married for going on 5 yrs so our kids are his, mine and ours lol.

    I am a full-time para legal student, I take all my classes online so I can be a stay at home mom until I graduate in January and start my career.

    My stepdaughter has been in and out of counseling since she was around 2, her bio mom has been in and out of her life since Shawna was 3 months old. She has yet to be diagnosed with anything due to counselors that have been no help.

    I stumbled upon this site while doing research about a situation we're in right now and seen how supportive everyone is and that's exactly what I need right now, support.
     
  2. Bunny

    Bunny Active Member

    Welcome to our little corner of the web! Can you give us some idea of what the situations you're in now is? Any information about her as a baby? Who has been taking her to counselor a? Is her mom in her life right now and if she is, what kind of mom is she?
     
  3. mykidsaremylife84

    mykidsaremylife84 New Member

    Of course. To be honest I have pretty much done everything, counseling apts, dealing with teachers, principals etc. The most recent problems are CONSTANTLY peeing her pants and stealing, the peeing has been an ongoing issue for about 3 yrs and the stealing started last year in 1st grade. To give you an idea how bad the stealing is, last year in a 2 month time frame she stole over 19 items, from kids back packs, their desks, the student stores, the Christmas stores. As of right now her bio mom sees her for 2 hrs in front of my house in my supervision per the court order. She has been in and out of her life due to drugs.
     
  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Welcome, J. (I'm not going to use your full name because we make up names here to protect our identities. This is a huge board and you never know who's reading.)
    You certainly have your hands full!
    Your daughter definitely has impulsivity issues.
    What is her bio mom like? Does she have impulsivity and lying issues? ADHD? Were the alcohol or drug use going on while she was pregnant?
    I'm thinking that there is a genetic component.
    Not sure what the bedwetting is about. Does your daughter drink fluids late at night? Is she a deep sleeper and does she sleep through, not knowing that her bladder is full?
    S hasn't been molested, right?
    Have you ever tried art therapy with her? That might give you some diagnostic skills and insight that you might not otherwise get from a child that young.
     
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Two important questions that may help solve the mystery.

    1/Did her birthmother use substances while pregnant? Alcohol? Without a doubt, if she did, substance abuse is very damaging to the brain of a developing fetus and usually causes behavioral problems and often learning problems as well. It is not their faults and they can't help it. You need to see somebody who specializes in drug exposed children if she used anything while pregnant.

    2/Were her first three years full of changes and chaos and different people and lots of changes and times when she did not get good care? Did BM bring men into the house who may have abused her? She could have attachment disorder or a form of it if she has lived in a lot of instability in those important infant-three years and again would need somebody who understands this both to diagnose it and to help her the right way.

    I always recommend a neuropsychologist evaluation for my American friends as they are the best, most thorough diagnosticians we have.

    I wish you luck and am so sorry you are struggling with her. How is your husband's other child so far?
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2013
  6. mykidsaremylife84

    mykidsaremylife84 New Member

    Ok here goes nothing lol my husband did not even know she existed until daughter (still learning the lingo) was 10 months old. Right away 2 DNA tests were done and he fought the grandma for custody, he only had weekends at that time (he works construction so it was "unhealthy" to wake her up at 4am to take her to day care and he needed to establish a relationship) After we got married we got sole custody of her when she was 2. So before that we had no idea, but later found out, bio mom was taking her for nights during the week from couch to couch and prostituting. So yes, by the time she was 3 she had been through many changes and once she was with us her life was finally stable. BUT when biomom found out I was "mom" to daughter she wanted back in the picture. So here comes the back and forth, clean one month awol for 6 months, court always gave her visitation because our state is all about keeping both parents involved. in my opinion she should not have been given so many chances just to, in the end, screw with my daughter more.

    She, of course, denies using drugs while preg but daughter was not born addicted. That's all we know for sure. That does not mean she did not use of course.
     
  7. mykidsaremylife84

    mykidsaremylife84 New Member

    daughter has a MAJOR addiction/obsession, whatever you want to call it, with fluids. She sneaks drinks, steals them, makes every excuse to use the rest room at school to drink out of the sinks and the toilets. It's her comfort zone and when gma had her she would just give her a bottle instead of food when she was plenty old enough and capable of eating solid foods, I'm talking until 2 yrs old. My husband caught her giving her bowls of ranch dressing and ketchup with a spoon and putting her in diapers AFTER my husband already had her poetry trained when she was 19 months.

    I am a research finatic, I research everything and one day while researching her excessive thirst I came across a case with a girl that had the same issue and she ended up having a tumor on the frontal lobe of her brain, the next day I made daughter an apt with her primary Dr and got a referral to a neurologist and her brain was fine. We have ruled out everything medical with the thirst, diabetes etc and with the peeing, tried bladder expansion pills and NOTHING has worked. We've been told by numerous counselors that the peeing is a control thing, it's the one thing she has control of and we can't stop her.
     
  8. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Hello and welcome!

    Sadly, I would suspect that if bio-mom was prostituting WITH a toddler in tow, that toddler was probably participating in things she should NEVER have been exposed to at such an early age.

    Can you find a specialist who works with sexually-abused children? I'm almost betting that the "clues" (bed wetting, excessive drinking, behavior issues) are all pointing to sexual abuse, but a specialist would be able to give you more information about that.
     
  9. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    We purposely don't expose our real names or locations BUT living in rural Florida I found a qualified sexusal abuse expert in Tampa (not convenient, lol, but the most qualified) and found that her perspective was really beneficial for one of our difficult children. Welcome aboard. I'm impressed that you are a research fanatic because that is the BEST trait that many of our difficult children need in a parent. Hugs DDD
     
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I would look into attachment disorder. Your child had many major disruptions in her early life and many caregivers and bio. mom was no responsible and could have exposed her to men who abused her, especially if they are drinkers or druggies. Her off-the-wall behavior is common in kids who have that sort of start. I adopted a child who did and, boy, he was so crazy we couldn't keep him with us as he was not safe, but your stepdaughter is still young. She will likely need somebody who is SKILLED AND AWARE of attachment therapy, not just your run-of-the-mill every day therapist or even psychologist.

    You can not parent her with stability and expect that alone to make the attachment issues go away. The peeing can be a sign that she was sexually abused. It is also a symptom of attachment disorder (although it is a symptom of other things too). If your stepdaughter is also mean to animals and is fascinated in any way with fire, you got a serious problem on your hands. Even if she isn't, or if you don't know if she isn't, you still have to treat her.

    If she HAS been sexually abused, and we don't know if she has or not, she may be a danger to act out on any younger kids so you may want to watch her around "Ms. Ours." It is commendable that your husband fought for her. Unfortunately, she experienced very serious problems at a very vulnerable age before he knew about her and that may affect her all her life. With the right attachment parenting, perhaps it won't.

    I'm going to give you a link about attachment disorder and you may want to start reading on it yourself. Although it could be other things too, I would be shocked if, with her horrible start in life and the drugs her birthmother ingested, if there is no attachment problems. Those first year years are grooved into the subconscious brain and the child believes nobody will take care of her and that nobody is trustworthy, even if the child finally goes to a stable situation. Therefore, the child is in self-survival and does not care about anyone but herself. This causes massive issues.

    Ok, here are the links. Good luck :) Keep us posted.

    http://www.helpguide.org/mental/parenting_bonding_reactive_attachment_disorder.htm
     
  11. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I would look into attachment disorder. Your child had many major disruptions in her early life and many caregivers and bio. mom was no responsible and could have exposed her to men who abused her, especially if they are drinkers or druggies. Her off-the-wall behavior is common in kids who have that sort of start. I adopted a child who did and, boy, he was so crazy we couldn't keep him with us as he was not safe, but your stepdaughter is still young. She will likely need somebody who is SKILLED AND AWARE of attachment therapy, not just your run-of-the-mill every day therapist or even psychologist.

    You can not parent her with stability and expect that alone to make the attachment issues go away. The peeing can be a sign that she was sexually abused. It is also a symptom of attachment disorder (although it is a symptom of other things too). If your stepdaughter is also mean to animals and is fascinated in any way with fire, you got a serious problem on your hands. Even if she isn't, or if you don't know if she isn't, you still have to treat her.

    If she HAS been sexually abused, and we don't know if she has or not, she may be a danger to act out on any younger kids so you may want to watch her around "Ms. Ours." It is commendable that your husband fought for her. Unfortunately, she experienced very serious problems at a very vulnerable age before he knew about her and that may affect her all her life. With the right attachment parenting, perhaps it won't. Now there is one thing you need to remember. Relatively speaking, you are new to this child so you are another change. You are her stepmother. You are not her mother. She has a mother and the fact that the mother is a mess is going to make things awful for her. Never deny, however, that the woman is her mother. If she wants to renounce her mother in later years, that is her decision. For better or for worse, she already has a mother that taught her not to trust people, but is still her DNA. She may have inherited some bad genes from Mom too. That is also a factor...heredity.

    I'm going to give you a link about attachment disorder and you may want to start reading on it yourself. Although it could be other things too, I would be shocked if, with her horrible start in life and the drugs her birthmother ingested, if there is no attachment problems. Those first year years are grooved into the subconscious brain and the child believes nobody will take care of her and that nobody is trustworthy, even if the child finally goes to a stable situation. Therefore, the child is in self-survival and does not care about anyone but herself. This causes massive issues.

    Ok, here are the links. Good luck :) Keep us posted.

    http://www.helpguide.org/mental/parenting_bonding_reactive_attachment_disorder.htm
     
  12. mykidsaremylife84

    mykidsaremylife84 New Member

    I have been the only mom she's really known since she was 2, she's 7 now. She knows bio mom is her mom and sees her for 2 hrs a week and still calls me "mom" in front of biomom and she's totally fine with it. In fact, she has thanked me for being there for Shawna when she couldn't or wasn't. My husband and I are the only stability she's ever had. She doesn't question or feel the need to wonder if I'll be there for her, she KNOWS I will be.
     
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    But you still aren't her biological mom and she knows this. That isn't your fault. In my eyes, you are more of a mom than her bio. mom who probably abused her by taking drugs and drinking even while the poor kid was still in the womb. I am just saying SHE will know who her bio. mom is and it will be something she will need to work out since bio. mom IS in her life...coming and going. I have adopted children. They NEVER saw their bio. moms. But they think about them sometimes and relate to them. That's normal. Unfortunately, stepdaughter knows her mom is not a nice lady and sometimes kids think, "If she's that way and she's my mom, am I bad too?"

    I'm glad she has stability now, but she didn't have during very important years and may be "chaos-oriented" and not really grateful to have a caring dad and stepmom or stability now. Such is the craziness of attachment disorder. She may know you will be there, but maybe she doesn't know that because of her experiences as an infant and with mom and her boyfriends. It could have made her fear that nobody will REALLY be good to her. Maybe not. At any rate, she needs serious, serious help. She has been around the mill for a little girl and she is very disturbed as evidenced by your other post.

    I was going to ask if she showed sexual behavior and hoped it would be a resounding "no." Unfortunately, she showed it so young that it makes no sense other than she was probably sexually abused. Who knew if mother even watched her while she around all these strange, stoned, drunk men?

    But you are trying to help her. I commend you greatly for that. I doubt if it will be easy. But I hope I'm wrong.
     
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