The other shoe dropped...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TerryJ2, Jul 14, 2007.

  1. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I had a great day yesterday with-difficult child when he came home from camp. He was really homesick, and very polite, actually opening doors for us.
    The other shoe dropped this a.m. husband didn't give him his pill, and difficult child had a 9:30 test at Sylvan. I took me 45 min. to get him out of bed, and I had to bribe him with-McDonald's. Along the way, he screamed and snarled at me, and when we were at Sylvan, he hit me in the arm.
    I called husband this a.m. and met him at Starbucks. I told him that difficult child is absolutely going to a boarding school. I refuse to live like this. I was SO angry at husband, but it turned out, he tried to give difficult child his pill for about 15 min. at 7:45 a.m. and gave up. He had forgotten about the test at Sylvan and he apologized. He has been very lax about reading the calendar in the kitchen. (Which HE bought, by the way.)
    At least this way, difficult child will get a good education.
    I'll be spending the next few mo's researching, as well as figuring out our finances.
    It may only be that we can afford to send difficult child to a HS and we'll have him here for the next 2 yrs, but I told husband that if I have a long-range goal in mind, it will help my emotional resilience immensely. His fave phrase is, "We'll cross that bridge when we come to it." I told him that I refuse to wait and I need a plan now. Since he won't make a plan, I will.

    He added that difficult child flat out doesn't like me, which I know, but it's still very depressing. I had so many plans for him, and even as a toddler, nothing turned out the way I had anticipated. Several counselors have suggested that difficult child has an underlying anger about his adoption and that I am the target but still, he needs to treat me with-respect, and take responsibility for his actions.
    difficult child has SO much potential.

    I like this plan because it will give him a great education, allow me to keep my sanity, allow easy child to have friends over to the house and live a normal life (she hasn't had friends overnight or for dinner in yrs.).

    We're not going to say anything to the kids until it is totally researched an in place, which will take mo's and may a yr.

    It's funny how certain circumstances clarify things. Having difficult child away for a wk, watching how his behavior improved away from us--at a "regular" camp--and then watching him turn into a monster so soon afterward, just made everything so crystal clear.



     
  2. Stella Johnson

    Stella Johnson Active Member

    I think we always have to have plans in place especially with difficult children. Sending them away to schools or Emotional Growth Boarding schools always takes time. Men do seem to want to put it off until later. I think it's in their genes. :hammer:

    Good luck on your school search!

    Steph
     
  3. WhymeMom?

    WhymeMom? No real answers to life..

    Its good to start early on your search, because it could take some time....good luck.
     
  4. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    "difficult child has an underlying anger about his adoption and that I am the target but still, he needs to treat me with-respect, and take responsibility for his actions."

    This was/is certainly true for my difficult child. While she is doing much better now I have always born the brunt of her anger over her adoption. I'm sure she didn't understand this fully when she was acting out angainst me. Even now she has issues with me that she does not have with husband, who by the way also adopted her.

    Adopted children often blame their adoptive mom's for everything, for the fact that they aren't with their birthmoms, for the fact that they have issues concerning their identity, for their low self esteem, for everything that goes wrong in their lives. My difficult child thinks it's my fault she is adopted. She often said "I hate my mom, she isn't my real mom." She didn't say "I hate my parents, they aren't my real parents." Her birthfather was never in the picture, never thought about him or blamed him. The anger she had at her birthmom got transferred to me but she never even considered that there was a birthfather too.

    One of her therapists once told her that in 13 years she never adopted us like we adopted her. That in 13 years we never gave up, never abandoned her, never walked out, and when was she going to do the same. That if we wanted to give up we would have done so long ago. She gave her permission to start trusting us and loving us.

    I agree that things become crystal clear when they are gone for a while and you see how things can really be and they come back and you aren't willing to live your life in the same chaos. I got to that point when difficult child went to detention. I decided I just wasn't going to live the rest of my life like that and if that meant she would have to go to school somewhere that's what I would make happen.

    I hope things work out for you. Of course I really hope your difficult child figures out what a great family he has and decided to become part of it. It can happen,but he probably has to lose what he has first to figure that out.

    Nancy
     
  5. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    One of her therapists once told her that 13 years we never gave up, never abandoned her, never walked out, and when was she going to do the same.

    I like that.


    I agree that things become crystal clear when they are gone for a while and you see how things can really be and they come back and you aren't willing to live your life in the same chaos.

    I really hope your difficult child figures out what a great family he has and decided to become part of it. It can happen,but he probably has to lose what he has first to figure that out.


    Yes. Sigh.

    by the way, I wrote my note in Word and then cut and pasted so it was a bit of a mishmash, but I edited it for clarity.

    Thank you all for your understanding.

     
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    If you take an adopted child to a therapist, social worker or psycologist, we have found that they target the adoption as the issue right away. It may not be true. While all adopted kids think about it, many function well and there are actually issues that the kids may have inherited which can cause them to act out on you. It doesn't have to be their deepseated resentment of you due to adoption, although you'd think so listening to some therapists. Most adopted children, especially those adopted at birth, accept and love their family, even if they think about their birthfamily. The adoption blame is sort of what therapists are taught in school--it's just a theory. If you have information on the birthparents you may well find that they have diagnosed psychiatric problems/personality issues that resemble your difficult child--inherited.
    Therapists tend to jump on MANY issues--all theoeretically the cause of certain behaviors. I've seen my share of them. I've gone to therapists since my teen years (I'm well past that now) and found that every therapist wanted to hone in on my bad relationship with my mother, but I have bipolar. Once that stabilized, suddenly my well being and peace of mind changed, and I realized that the therapists were WRONG. It's possible that your child is just wired differently. If she hears from her therapists that her adoption bothers her, it's an easy target for her to pick up and through at you. It can also start to upset her more than it would if it wasn't always talked about. I don't know what's wrong with your child, but it can take years to find out. If she has Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) traits, and it sounds like she may, then she would be remote whether or not she was adopted. in my opinion it never hurts to keep looking for answers. If she's never seen a neuropsychologist, maybe go there and see if he or she has a fresh perspective. My own experience with therapists has not been good--and I've seen tons. They also misdiagnosed my own adopted son. I'm not a fan of "The Primal Wound" etc. because it is strictly theory. I got really good help from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Instead of pondering "why is this happening" (something I doubt even your child knows), this focuses on different ways of managing behavior and I found it very helpful. I wish you luck. This isn't easy. It took us a long time to figure it out. Freud was once the rule of the day for therapists. That was just a theory, disproven, and this could be the next trend that will be disproven. At any rate, I hope you find good help. Hugs :smile:
     
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Yes, our child psychiatric is into cognitive therapy and right now he's focusing on getting difficult child to take responsiblity for his own behavior.
    I agree that too many people hone in on the adoption thing. Our psychiatric has only mentioned it once or twice to difficult child, and we've been going for yrs. *I'm* the one the doctors. mention it to when difficult child isn't around (I should have clarified that), and they will surely take their cue from me if I decide to pursue therapy in that regard.
    Meanwhile, I'm working my way through "The Out of Sync Child," and I see both difficult child and myself in there, on opposite ends of the spectrum. That is surely part of the problem, as well.
    As you said, keep searching...
    Oh, I got my appointment. with-the children's hospital. for speech therapy testing (cognitive, not actual speaking issues). It's in 3 wks. It took me 6 mo's to get through their phone system and ins. Ack! The only reason I got through was because I started called twice a day, every day. The squeaky wheel...

    20 yrs from now, we'll all be proud and relieved. But right now, I just have to make it through the day. Sigh.
     
  8. WNC Gal

    WNC Gal New Member

    Terry - I know exactly how you feel. I am terrified to bring my difficult child back home and wait for the other shoe to fall. My husband doesn't exactly see it like this - he tends to think her issues are small ones like not doing homework, or being a "moody teenager". But she is seriously mentally ill and at high risk for harming herself. She is also delving more and more into manipulative behavior which is hurting the whole family.

    Does anyone have kids 18+ who are still having issues and you wish you had done more while they were still living at home and younger? She's only 14 and I feel that a therapeutic boarding school might be far safer and better for her - they certainly can control access to potentially dangerous situations that kids with bipolar/borderline might be irresistibly drawn to.

    We've only got her for four more years (the way she feels about us now, she will bolt the millisecond she turns 18). So, we really need to make some good decisions NOW to give her the very best shot at recovery and success. AND to spare the rest of family from getting dragged into her quagmire of maladaptive behaviors...
     
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Well, I guess if we know it's going to happen and we plan for the other shoe to drop, it lessens the blow...

    Yes, there are people here with-older kids. WHy not start a post with-that heading? You'll get some good responses.
     
  10. jbrain

    jbrain Member

    Hi,
    I wish I had done less with difficult child 1 when she was younger and at home (she is 19 now). I put all of my energy, thoughts, everything into trying to help her. If I could do it over I would take a great deal of that and give it to my other 2 "normal" kids. My younger dtr, especially, has suffered greatly from having a difficult child older sister and she was too "good" up til she was a teenager herself. She stuffed all her emotions and played her role as the good kid very well til her sister went away to an Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Then, when I thought we were going to have a calm, healing time while her sister was away, all heck broke loose and we found out just how miserable she actually was.

    My son who is now 23 says he felt all alone while he was a teen, that there was no one to turn to because he could see that his sister required so much attention that he too had to be a "good" kid--felt he was not allowed to have any problems.

    So, from my perspective now, I would say be very careful about devoting your whole life to your difficult child at the expense of the rest of your family. The younger kids may seem to be doing great but they may be having their own turmoil that you don't know about because they know they have to be good.

    Jane
     
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