Newbie with- an update

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by w_woody, Aug 7, 2009.

  1. w_woody

    w_woody New Member

    Hello all,

    Thanks for all the advice I've been given thus far. D has had his first two days of school and so far so good. His teacher has been a real help and seems to not mind me poking my head in every morning and evening to see how well he's doing. I am going to closely monitor him over the next few weeks or so and then gradually give him some space and see if he stays on track. I've given the teacher all the info I can about what to look for and how to respond to his melt downs and he seems to really enjoy this new school. I think preparing him by telling him this was an oppertunity for a fresh start for him seemed to help him adjust.

    His BM hasn't called since tuesday, his first day was Wed. and I can't understand why. She wanted him to go to the school that is a block or so from our home but after speaking with the Special Education Admin. she informed me that principle wouldn't work with D only suspend or expel him at the first chance he got. So I decided it best to send D to another school where the Principle and Teachers are used to dealing with problem kids. Plus this school has made a huge push forward to help improve reading in their school and that's D's worst subject. They do 90 min of uninterrupted reading every morning and an additional 90 througout the day for kids who aren't reading at the right level. D reads well, but fast and his comprehension suffers for it.

    D's BM also sent my attorney's the papers she said she would, allowing D to stay in my home full-time, however, she wants him every weekend in VA, No Support, and I have to drive half way 70 plus miles to pick him up and drop him off. I said no way and sent her what I would agree to and haven't heard anything. They still haven't filed for visitation and they still haven't gotten a date for our hearing. His BGM is still sending letters, she sent 2 this week, one I gave to him and the other which went on and on about how he was missing Vacation Bible School and all the fun air blown rides they where going to have, not to mention she closed with "Please come home soon." as if he has a choice about it.

    A couple of really positive things happend this week as well.

    Example: We went to visit my mom and my neice who is 5 came over and really started roughing D up, smacking and too...she's a little sister (who for all intents is a complete and opposite of me) told D to go ahead and hit her daughter back, not to let her beat up on him. D told his aunt that he couldn't that it was on his allowance board that he can't hit, kick, or throw anything or he'd loose his allowance for the day. She looked at him and finally had to get on her daughter and tell her to quit, herself. I was very proud of D and told him so.

    He's really digging this allowance week will change it up drastically though since he's started school...I'm not sure how he'll adjust but so far he seems keen on earning his allowance.
  2. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    It sounds like he's really making progress. Good for him, not hitting your niece back.

    Hre's hoping BM gets real about what is in D's best interests.

  3. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Woody - I think this is an *extremely* positive update!!! Sounds like you made a very good choice in terms of placement. I just fume when I hear about schools whose policy is suspension/expulsion of such young kiddos. I think it sets up an awful precedent of school being a bad place for the kids - it's almost impossible to undo that. So bravo to you for being proactive!!!

    I love that he remembered the allowance board even when it was out of sight. I think that is an extremely good sign for all of you! ;) When our kids respond well to reinforcements and incentives, it really does make life much easier. You might want to consider making changes on the board gradual, rather than one drastic change. It might help him continue to have the opportunity to succeed at tasks while you're adding new (maybe more difficult?) ones.

    Sorry that biomom hasn't contacted him - that's so hard on him, I'm sure. Hopefully the visitation stuff will get worked out for you guys, without too much drama (fingers crossed).

    Overall, a truly fantastic update! Sounds like you're doing a very thoughtful job of helping him settle in.:bravo:
  4. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Excellent update. Despite all the upheaval he is keeping to his allowance board.
    in my humble opinion, if it's working, keep using it then very slowly, gradually change it up. He may not be able to handle a quick change and why would you want to mess with success.
    He sounds like a child who desperately wants to do the right thing but needs help in defining how to go about it.

    Big applause to you for working to see what this child needs to be the best he can be.

    I don't know what to think about bm since she may suffer from some of the same poor decision making skills as her son suffers. It's hard to understand how someone can use a child as a negotiating tool.

    Keep doing what you do.
  5. w_woody

    w_woody New Member

    I think your right about making big changes to the board...I'm just going to combine 3 of the things, making his bed, picking up his toys, and pick up dirty laundry into 1 item...he's been doing these things for the whole month without so much as a hitch...the idea is to combine them into 1 task and actually reduce the number of tasks on his that later I can add other things. I'm going to wait on adding anymore chores until I see he's doing okay at school.

    I'm going to drop his workbook that he's been doing with me here at home and add behaved at school and completed homework as 2 seperate tasks. (since he'll be in school full swing next week).

    I've made small changes over the whole month and he hasn't minded...this will be the most signifigant change, but I think he'll be okay because it's not going to be a complete overhaul just a small change for school.

    The good thing is I can talk to him about it before hand and make any adjustments before I put up the new board on Monday. It lets him put his 2 cents into it, as well.
  6. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Whoa! Warrior Dad! Beautifully done and what a wonderful update!

    You need to strut!


  7. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member


    If he has any problems with the allowance board you can also offer to him to think of ways to change it so it works. If he struggles you could suggest a separate board for school and have different rewards for school success than home success. Make sure he thinks it is his decision.
  8. w_woody

    w_woody New Member

    Jumped the gun a bit...after a good week D slipped a bit today. Nothing horrible but it was deffinately triggered by my wife's presence. Anytime she comes near him he gets aggressive, I also noticed he does this with his BM and BGM because he got aggressive around them as well during his birthday visitation. Today he pushed our 2 year old down with his foot after my wife entered the living room, while I was in the kitchen for no reason. Later he became upset and lashed out while we where at a local park threatening to kick another child in the head...I told him to sit down and cool off...but the second my back was turned he hoped up and tried to run off. I didn't have to chase him, because I warned him that if I did the consequences would be severe. He stopped and sat down.

    These behaviors always occur when he knows I can't see or thinks I can't see him. He's fine as long as my wife is not in the room, but when she's around him his tension level goes up. I'm not sure if it's programming, lack of female authority, or if there's some thing in his mind that's set him this way you know kids reasoning for things can be differnt from an adults. Every day she's home he's more aggressive, quick tempered, and lashes out. No matter how nice and affectionate she tries to be to him. It's deffinately her presence. I know she's never done anything to warrant this behavior but after spending so much one on one time with him over the last two months, it's obvious how different his behavior is from litterally one minute to the next...from when she's in the room to when she's not.
  9. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    That's good observation. Definitely worth mentioning to the therapist or psychiatrist.

    It could connect to past issues with female authority figures.

  10. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Great update! You have really achieved a lot in a short time.

    I'm so sorry to hear that your difficult child is still having issues with-female authority figures and your wife in particular, but considering how much progress he has made in such a short time, I have no doubt you can get over this, too. As Marg said, just be sure to bring it up in a counseling session (or 2 or 10!).
  11. w_woody

    w_woody New Member

    Again, D was good all day today. I got a good report from his teacher and he's been well behaved for wife comes in from work around 7 and brings home ice cream for the kids. D sits at the table eating his ice cream and when my wife asks him if it's okay he ignores her. No response. She asks me if he's been like this today and I tell her no. So she walks over to where our 2 year old is eating and D kicks at wife. She warns him if he kicks at her again she's taking the ice cream and sending him to his room. So of he goes trying his best...she takes the ice cream and tells him to go to his room...he falls in the floor kicking and screaming saying that now he'll be good. Finally, he gets up and heads toward his room when I come into the Kitchen (hanging back letting her deal with the situation as much as possible).

    It's 100% because she was in the room. She brought him ice cream as a reward for being good at school and ate dinner but he responds negatively because she's the one who is in the room (and I'm not).
  12. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    There is something going on here in his head. And I don't think it's because she's not his mother, or a usurper, or any of the other pseudo-Freudian stuff. Definitely something to share with his therapists (I'd be keeping a written log to give to therapist and psychiatrist).

    As for your wife - don't let her take this personally. I don't think it's her.

    AN experiment, something I did at work when I was doing a job which was fairly macho, but having problems with a male sociopathic colleague - I spent some of the week or so dressed in a very practical, unattractive, unfeminine way. Jeans. Overalls. Work boots. No make-up. Hair pulled back severely. And then I flip-flopped and spent another week dressed as femininely as I could get away with, in the job. Obviously I couldn't wear floaty satins because I needed somewhere to carry the work tools and I still had to wear a lab coat or overall sometimes, but this time I worre make-up, I did my nails, I still had to tie my hair back but I stuck a flower in it.

    And with my sociopathic work mate - when I was feminine, he relaxed. He stopped seeing me as competing for his job. I was left alone to do my job without molestation. But when I looked like I meant business, he was vicious in his sabotage of me and everything i was trying to do in my job.

    So please in your notes - pay attention to your wife's appearance and manner and see if he reacts more, or less, according to how feminine she appears (or not). Similarly, try to observe the way he interacts with other females and also score the other women according to how 'female' they appear, or not. For example, some women he encounters may seem more androgynous. He may find them MORE threatening, or less so. The result would be interesting and perhaps enlightening.

    on the other hand, it might be more politically correct for your wife to do this!