detatching from the guilt

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by compassion, Feb 8, 2009.

  1. compassion

    compassion Member

    It is s o hard for me to disengsage from difficult children relentelss attempts to get her out of the Residential Treatment Center (RTC). She calls me up with this sad weak voice but she is gving thema totally different impression on the unit. (thanks many of you for sharing this is common) Her latest is that she will be back by April 16 her 16th birthday. She contends everyone but me and her psychiatrist think this makes sense. Why am I trying to reqson with such an ill child and getting hooked int o the guilt buttons? We had a visit.She is a master spiiner and extremly charming and trianulates really well. She ahs been doing thsi for years: everyone thinks you are nuts becasue you set lilmits etc. She eants to do whatever she wants.
    She will be transfered to the residential unit tomore and I know it is terrifying for her. I have alwqasy homeschooled her. She has never gone toa public shcool. I will stay in touch with her by phone daily and will see her for family therapy and visitation on Tuesday, and visit her next weekend twice. Brother eill see her Thursday.
    As I write this, how do I expect ehr to accpet she is ill? She thinks she is fine.Even though she tells psychiatrist eillingness to get better, I do not beleive she is there yet. Her current obsession, I guess is normal for her: do wahtever it takes to get out of there so she can becoe party girl agian.
    Thanks for listening. Compassion
  2. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Hugs. Here's hoping the professionals know what is going on too.
  3. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    It sounds like you are holding up well despite this incredible stress.

    Keep remembering to take care of yourself.

    I hope she can get her head clear while in there. She needs to learn to believe in herself.
  4. Janna

    Janna New Member

    I never engaged in conversations with B or D regarding discharge. I always left that up to the "professionals". With both children, they were aware of their discharge dates early into their stays at Residential Treatment Facility (RTF) (which I do not think is ok) and the date they are given is the date.

    When the times arose if there wasn't a date for discharge yet and they would ask me, my answer was always, simply, "when you have completed working on your goals".

    So, when she calls you, upset or crying, begging to come home - throw that at her. "How are you doing working on your goals". She must have them?

    Placing a child out of your home is a load of guilt for any parent and I'm not sure how you can detach. Everyone that *hasnt* been there can talk about it and tell you to do this and that, but until you have done it, you don't *really* know how painful it is.

    Just keep trying to tell yourself you're doing this for her. And, don't get in the battles. If she's throwing on the guilt trips, politely tell her someone's at the door, something's in the oven, you gotta go. Don't let her reel you in.

  5. compassion

    compassion Member

    Thanks Janna. She is not even off the acute ward yet and in the Residential Treatment Center (RTC) (should be today). I try to say one day at a time, what are you doing? I will foucs on ecncouragin her, showing love, etc. The date is 6 months, tha is it, now she needs to to begin the paingful process of dealing /staqbilizing. Compassion
  6. C.J.

    C.J. New Member

    When N* was in Residential Treatment Center (RTC), she ratcheted up the guilt. "It's your fault I'm here. I didn't really run away again - you knew I was coming back." "Now I know you never really loved me."

    I think this is typical. While N* was there, she was injured accidentally. Not seriously, but required crutches. One of the best things her case manager told me at that point was not to swoop in with caretaking behavior. He advised that she needed to miss the things from home to make the situation real for her. When juveniles are placed out of the home, moms and dads are not there to offer aid and comfort 24/7. While it's harder to triangulate parents vs Residential Treatment Center (RTC) staff, most difficult children will try.

    Another suggestion which was good for N*: Explain to difficult child you will not tolerate disrespectful behavior while you are visiting, and will leave immediately if difficult child acts in a disrespectful manner. I left one visiting session and one counselling session (Masters Level Social Worker lost control of session) before N* got the message I was serious.

    Tell her you love her, and know she will make great progress when she's ready to do the hard work.
  7. compassion

    compassion Member

    Thanks CJ. I will enforce those boundaries. My therapist also suggested I do that with phone calls: manipulation starts, I am off the phone.
    I is important to keep the focus on HER. Compassion
  8. bran155

    bran155 Guest


    Hi hun. You know, I know how you feel. I have been there many times. It is completely natural for your daughter to try to play on your sympathy to get out. You must stay strong and try your hardest not to feed into that argument. When my daughter first got to the Residential Treatment Center (RTC) and for months after, I used to get sucked in all of the time. In the beginning her therapist wouldn't even let me talk to B on the phone without supervision. As soon as B started in on me the therapist would end our phone call because I wasn't strong enough to do it myself. It takes time. This is all very new for you right now. As time passes it will get much easier for you to set those boundaries. Your guilt is still so fresh. That will subside over time. Your feelings are very normal. And truthfully there is no magic in detaching. It took me a very long time and a lot of sleepless nights to get to where I am now. You will get there too. Just take baby steps and go one day at a time. You know in your heart everything you are doing is for your daughter's benefit. You have not made one decision without her best interest at heart. Remind yourself of that as often as needed. And ENJOY the peace!!! You and your family deserve it!!!

    Hang in there.

    Shawna :)
  9. compassion

    compassion Member

    Thanks, Shawna. She transferred over to the actual Residential Treatment Center (RTC) unit from acute yesterday afternoon. She sounds much better: has been on medications, sleeping and eating: getting staable YES!!!!
    We have our first session with family therapist today. She awants me to bring her purfume, make-up,etc. Hopefully it will be pretty on time so husband and I can grab a bite to eat before we vist with her.
    I had Nami support group last night and it was fanastic. I am loving the peace and quiet.
    There is alwys warrior mother stuff to do on every level but I am committed to taking care of me. I wll read and write (non caretaking stuff) if only for a few minutes today. Compassion
  10. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Make sure she's allowed to have perfume.. it was not allowed where Youngest when becuase most has alcohol in it. They'll check it when you bring it, anyway, but just wanted you be aware of that.

    Re the pulling of the heart strings.. it takes practice to disengage from those conversations, I know. The best thing to do is nip them in the bud when they start, redirect the conversation (as suggested above) or simply say you will NOT discuss it. Read your NAMI/Alanon whatever literature you can get to help with detaching.. the book Codependent No More always helps me, as well.

    Hang in there!
  11. bran155

    bran155 Guest

    Good for you Compassion. You sound like you are holding up okay. You so deserve to enjoy this time and I am glad that your spirits are up!!

    Good job mom! :)