When you show up with-difficult child at therapy next time, be sure that you allow difficult child to state his own reasons for bringing in something incredibly short and/or lame, or not at all, and then say something in AGREEMENT with-the therapist like, "Yes, I am disappointed too, but it's difficult child's assignment, not mine."
That will give a msg to both the Dr and your difficult child.
I wonder if that assignment is a version of what a lot of parents do when they tell their kids to write "I'm sorry for yelling" 10X on a piece of paper?
My difficult child is only now, at age 10, beginning to understand how his actions and emotional outbursts impact others... something my easy child understood at age 3. The good part is that he IS learning. Of course, the bad part is that he'll be 100 b4 he's "there."
When I had radiation for breast cancer last summer, he came along with-me to a couple appts. He didn't like being dragged around but my schedule was tight. After 6 wks of it, something happened totally unrelated and he flipped out. One of the things he yelled was how much he hated being nice to me because I had radiation therapy. Say what?
Hurtful, rude, selfish, you name it.
I had him write 10X, "I'm sorry about your radiation." (I really wanted him to write, "I'm so sorry that I was a snot about your radiation, especially when it's so uncomfortable and takes so many weeks, and that I'm always acting like I'm King of the World." But it was too long of a sentence!)
Of course, he didn't want to do it. But I told him he was grounded off of TV and computer and friends until he did it, that he hurt my feelings, and that if his feelings were hurt because he was grounded, good!
I walked away, and after umpteen hours, he finally did it.
He felt ever so slightly guilty, at least for his age level.
One baby step at a time...