Friday 29 April 2011

Archived Post 2011 - It's not their fault.

"Hey Mom, sorry I had such a bad morning, I love you, have a good day" said Randall as he was rushing out the door this morning.
"That's okay buddy, it happens and it wasn't so bad" I said, keeping the grouchy mama voice inside my head.
"Nope, your right, I didn't spill anything, that would of made it worse" he replied and as he skipped off down the path he turned and signed I love you to me.
 My heart melted in that moment.

He had a bad morning, nothing new, what is new is that he saw that and moved on from it without yelling or arguing or blaming me for his mistakes. That is progress, it is also attachment.

Randall is moving forward in his attachment to me, he has been for awhile. That in and of itself it a WONDERFUL thing but  it is hard because I have been so hurt by the way he has treated me that sometimes I still feel as though it is all a carefully constructed facade.  Here he is moving along, making loving comments, looking for touch and reassurance from me because he is learning to trust me, learning to love me and there are times when I do not want him to. I don't want to be touched, or loved or spend time with him. I want to be hurt and bitter and angry because of the way he has treated me.

Don't worry, I am not playing favourites. It's not just Randall, sometimes I feel the same way about Kevin.

The thing is even though sometimes I feel that way I need to keep those very real and very normal feelings in check, I need to put on my happy face and fake it. It is not as hard to fake it as it was awhile ago. Some days are easier than others.

I need to fake it because it is not my children's fault that they are still attaching to me. It is not my children's fault that they do not trust adults to meet their needs. It is most certainly not their fault that they are in this situation, it is the fault of other adults, adults who did not meet their needs.

Lately when I ready to blow at one of them, when I do not want to be touched by them, when I am so far past frustrated with a rage or and tantrum or an argument, I hang on to that, I hang on to - it's not their fault, they did not ask for this. They have been shaped and formed and changed by what happened to them as young children.

I am not justifying all of their behaviour, but their past matters, it makes a difference, it changes things.

Yes they make choices, they do stuff that make things worse, they act like children and sometimes that drives me crazy. But at the end of the day some of it is not their fault and that it is very important thing to remember when parenting them.

Thursday 21 April 2011

Archived Posts - 2011 Mind If I Rant

It's been a long week. I need to rant a bit. If you are having a great day and don't want to listen to ranting that's ok.

Still here, thanks for being willing to read my ramblings.

In July the boys will of been with us for 3 years. That a few months longer than the amount of time that they spent in foster care. It is a long time. In my life a year no longer seems like a long time but in the life of a child it is an eternity. So if they have been forever ( or what feels like forever) why the hell can they not figure out that we will love them no matter and that the pushing and arguing and testing and creating chaos on purpose can stop anytime now.

Yesterday Kevin brought home a failed math test. He left huge portions of it blank not because he did not know the answers but simply because he was not interested in doing it.
Last night he cut things up and generally made a mess in the bathroom because rather than come upstairs with him while he was getting ready I dared to spend time talking to Jack who had just gotten home.
Randall just about knocked a boiling pot of water off the stove the other day in his crazy attempt to get me to pay attention to him rather than to the dinner I was trying to make.
Randall also can no longer remember how to set the table, clear the table, stack dishes, get dressed, chew with his mouth closed, feed the cat or bring his homework home.
Neither of them can remember that the kitchen is not a self serve take out bar and they need to ask before they help themselves to whatever it is that they feel like eating in that moment.
Kevin has decided that I can not go anywhere without him, if I do all hell breaks loose and Jack who is home with him gets the brunt of the behaviour.

We could be done with this anytime now, yesterday would of been a good day to start, tomorrow is equally good.... what do you think my chances are.

Stop laughing

I know it's not going to change anytime soon but a girl can dream can't she.

I am going to get a white chocolate mocha now because that will solve all my problems.

Saturday 16 April 2011

Archived Post 2011 - You know you are a therapeutic parent when ...

You know you are a therapeutic parent when you are confronting your son about his stealing and in the midst of the conversation a nugget of truth starts to emerge. Your partner pursues the questioning as he did not really catch the nugget of truth. You interrupt your partner and take over the questioning while holding one finger up to your husband and say...

Daniel Hughes

He gets where you are going immediately and lets you go there.

Your son admits he was trying to get your attention, he is understands how he could of done it differently and he moves into remorse without rage. Everyone goes to bed and no one is angry at anyone else any longer.

Read Daniel Hughes, it works.

Wednesday 6 April 2011

archived post 2011 - Confessions

I have a confession to make.
Monday was a bad day for me.
I was not a therapeutic parent on Monday night, I was not a good parent, in fact I was not even a good enough parent. I sucked at parenting on Monday.
I am okay with that.
Really I am and you should be to.

I am not perfect. I yell at my kids when they do things like scare the crap out of me by disappearing when they should be in the house, unpacking their backpacks because even though I am running a few minutes late and was not home when they got off the bus they know what to do and should be doing it.

I should not of yelled, I certainly should of not used some of the words I choose to use but I was scared and upset and then angry that they chose to ignore yet again. Once I calmed down a little and had settled my heart rate down to it's normal number of beats per minute I talked to them. I was still not therapeutic though. I may of not been yelling anymore but I was still mad and there was little that I said or did that night that could be considering good parenting when you are dealing with hurt kids (probably not for any kids in fact).

I regret what I said, but I am not perfect, things happen. It was not mean or belittling but it was about my expectations for them and in that moment my expectations for my kids were unrealistic because when my kids are scared they lie, when I yell at kids they get scared. My kids made a mistake, I yelled, they shut down and it spiralled out of control from there. I was upset for a long time but by bedtime we had managed to make it so that everyone was feeling calmer and more regulated.

My kids will survive, I will survive and we will move forward together.

If you are having a hard parenting day, if you just yelled at your kid or said something that was probably not the best thing to say or sent them to there room forever till they could behave like a civilized human being... know that you are not alone.

It's a good thing that Tuesday was a new day. It was better than Monday, not fantastic but better.