difficult child setting herself up to fail...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by ksm, May 14, 2012.

  1. ksm

    ksm Well-Known Member

    and it doesn't seem like I can do anything to get her back on track. She is making mostly c's in her classes, with an A in choir and a B in PE. But, she will probably fail English. English is the only class that has "projects" that involve many steps to complete (ie; research, outlines, notecards, report, power point, etc). On Friday, she said she had 3 journal assignments due before the end of the school year. It was like pulling teeth to get her to sit down and work on them. She did ONE paper, and worked on it 1.5 hours on Saturday and about that amount on Sunday. It is a half page of typing. THere are various subjects. Travel, A lesson I learned too late, life time line. etc. On Sunday she was saying, she can get it done at school because she would have Monday and Tuesday, and after school on Tuesday at homework club. Today, she came home and said she had 5 of these due by end of day tomorrow. Could we get her to complete any?? NO. She sat at the computer and maybe typed a sentence. Then she didn't feel good, then she had to take a bath, and then would work on it, after bath, didn't feel like working on it. Tried to get her to agree to get up a little early tomorrow and work on it. I offered to type the words if she would tell me what to type. NOPE. Then she lays in bed and cries because if she doesn't have all five done, then she misses a free day at school. But will she work on it? NO. I ask her if she is just giving up and she starts yelling that she is working so hard! I wanted to yell back that no... you aren't working hard. you are hardly working!

    So frustrating. We have an appointment on THursday after school for an appointment with the therapist. I think it has been about two months - and we have been waiting for insurance to approve more than six for the whole year!! The therapist is frustrated with the ins company too, as she has done all the paper work, only to be told she left a number off the form... but there was no request for her tax id number on the form!! Not even sure if we will be seen Thursday... as she faxed everything again. She confided in me that she never got paid for the first 8 appts (2 from last year! and the "6" allowed for this year) as she didn't document everything the way they wanted it done. She seems to be a competent therapist, but left a big mental health clinic to work in a two person office, and I don't think she had to file the paper work herself until in her own office.

    Anyway, I am just really frustrated. And to top it off... last night she was crying because her bio mom hadn't called in several weeks. I asked her if she wanted to try and call her for mother's day and she said no - if she can't call me, I'm not calling her. Then 10 minutes later, the phone rings and it is bio mom. Says she couldn't call because she was picked up for an old warrant on a traffic ticket and spent two weeks in jail. Maybe she is telling the truth. Much more likely than the times she has called us to say she was in ICU for two weeks, or deathly sick at home and couldn't call, of the tire blew out and the car rolled on the way to see them at Christmas. I have heard it all and don't believe most of it. And it seems like difficult child is good about making excuses about why she can't do the work. If she would just try, I wouldn't even be upset if the grade wasn't great. But I can tell she is not trying.

    I know I shouldn't compare her to bio mom... but I have dealt with bio mom for the last 14 years. and now I see so many things that difficult child does that is exactly what bio mom would say or do. I think I need to go back to my therapist and see how to deal with that. I get so stressed because I can never get thru to difficult child. No light bulb moments with her. No - ah ha! moments. Just "poor me" and a million reasons why the teachers don't like her, her friends don't like her, people who don't even know her don't like her. etc etc. She has a huge chip on her shoulder and is so negative about everything,

    I just can't do any thing right for her. KSM
  2. idohope

    idohope Member

    To deal with the immediate issue: how is your relationship with the school? Will they work with her on the assignments? I know with my difficult child she will get much more done at school or HW club than at home. I know how hard it is when you know they have such potential and they dont utilize it.
  3. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Great idea to talk to the therapist about your feelings about bio mom compared to difficult child.
    Still, you daug is struggling and needs help with-complicated, step-by-step projects. My son works well in school if he can do one step at a time in the classroom. Once he gets home, it's very difficult. I have to hold the outline in my hand and have him do one step each day or he doesn't get any electronics. Next yr is going to be h*ll!
    Best of luck!
  4. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    I agree with Terry. Your difficult child needed help to do those assignments because apparently she struggles with that kind of task. Now, she's running out of time and is feeling so overwhelmed (do something she can't do alone + only a few days to do ALL of it) that she's shutting down. difficult child 1 has done the same thing when the school refused to acknowledge he had the skill deficit and needed help but then punishing him if he didn't do it. His anxiety got in the way. Does she have an IEP? If not, now you know of one skill area she needs help with .... when it's assigned, not when the school year ends.

    Poor kid. I can only imagine the pressure she's feeling and the internal (and external) struggles she's having to deal with.
  5. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    It's a cycle. She doesn't do the work because it's overwhelming to her, but then she sits down to try to work on something and she is overwhelmed because there is SO much for her to work on. Is it possible to break down what she needs to do? Step 1 is this, get that done. That's done? Okay, step 2 is this. Try working on that. Sounds simplistic, but it could be that she sees all those steps and just shuts down because the project as a whole is overwhelming, when she really needs to try to look at it in pieces.

    Can you call her guidance counselor and see if they can give her help at school? Maybe after school with the teacher in the library?
  6. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    This sounds VERY MUCH like executive function disorder and it is a real disability. People with this are unable to handle complex tasks. they simply cannot break tasks down into steps and organize the steps and get them done. It often shows up in upper grades and can be a HUGE problem esp with tasks like this. this IS something that can be evaluated for and accommodated. she may need different projects, but this sure looks more like an inability than an "i don't want to" problem. Also, has she been tested for NonVerbal Learning Disorder (NVLD)? NonVerbal Learning Disorder (NVLD) (Non verbal learning disorder) often doesn't show up until the upper grades. It can look like aspergers n that they have trouble with social situaitons and reading facial and body language.

    Googling NonVerbal Learning Disorder (NVLD) and executive function disorder might give you some ideas of what may be going on wiht her and how to help. It is pretty common to miss these on standard testing, even for learning disorders. Wiz has had 3 sets of 'complete' evaluations miss these and it is incredibly clear that he has them. Luckily we already knew and were able to work with him on them.

    I know it is super frustrating because it seems like they don't 'want' to do the tasks or that they won't even try. but they are soooo overwhelmed that they cannot even see the first baby step and figure they have already flunked so why bother. I have my own problems with this type of thing and it can be totally debilitating.
  7. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Ditto... difficult child was (note past tense) very much that way.
    They really do not want to be this way. They really cannot handle it.
    And until you know why, there isn't much that seems to help.

    For our difficult child, on top of moderate executive function deficits... there was extreme fatigue, and Auditory Processing Disorders (APD), and poor working memory. Boy, does that ever add up!