Saturday, May 29, 2010

Each time I tell myself, I think I've had enough ...

... I'm gonna' show you, baby, that a woman can be tough.

It's Day #3 of the Attachment Challenge in the Moers home.

It has been, um ... hmmmm ... a little rough?

Yesterday was great. I was not happy or feeling mushy, but my kid was deeeeeelighted. Even playing dumb did not stop the make-up application extravaganza. We talked puberty (zits and toners and what-not). It was good stuff. I did not get sarcastic. I stuck to my guns. I was cursing all of you in my head for knowing you would be checking in.

So, this morning my child came straight into my room first thing, "Mom, can I have a hug?"

Doesn't seem like a big deal, except for the fact that it went against three immediate guidelines we have for them (there to ensure safety and success). Well, and they was wearing a painfully clashing ensemble. That is one of my easy indicators of their mood. They have lots of favorites and love to dress up. It's pretty obvious when they are using their clothes to yell, "NOT A GOOD DAY!!"

Anywho, it kinda went down from there. When they are looking for a fight, they are good. They are like stealth warriors who will stop at nothing to meet their goal. So, my first three hugs we the non-squishy variety. Got to hug a very I-don't-want-you-to-hug-me child. [enter sarcasm] That, and a danish, and you have the perfect start to your day!

I decided to have them run an errand with me. We could do some processing in the car, and then as a surprise, I would ask if they wanted to go out lunch with me for Mom time. I started the conversation: "Yesterday seemed to be a great day. Today ... mmmmmm ... not so much. So, let's rewind. How were things when you first woke up?"

They did not want to answer. Well, they did not want to uncover what the problem was underneath. Some of my kids are what the experts call a therapized kid - can spout off lots of therapy words and phrases to avoid the real issue. Got a lot of that. So, I just sat quietly, with the occasional, "Honey, you're not in trouble, and if you don't want to talk about it, that's okay. But if you do want to talk, let's do the work - together. Your choice. I'm okay either way." More with the silence on my side. Oh my goodness, can that kid have an argument with their SELF! It's amazing! At one point they were flopping around, literally nose-to-the-window away from me. Would put their hand up to hide from me. Could not get me to engage.

For some reason, I had the song "Tomorrow" stuck in my head. Just put it on *repeat* in my brain and waited it out. We stopped to pick up some equipment for the park. Then back in the car.

"Honey, I really thought you would have enjoyed going out to lunch with me for your Mom Time today. I wanted that, too. However, you keep yelling at me to leave you alone and go away. I'm not sure what you want. I'm not mad at you, but you seem really angry. This must be hard."


I hate it when they get like this, but it also gives me some of the funniest catch-phrases to use for my own pleasure. From now on, if you say something to me and I would rather ignore you, I'm just gonna say, "Yeah, good for ME!"

It was last year that my darlin' coined the new curse word we are all using with fervor: jerk a**!

"Would you like to talk it? I'm not upset with you."

"Cause you're the MOM!" Hands over the face, the fake cry and that's when the banging started. Hitting the window, door and dash. Just general yelling. This was even after telling them that they absolutely did not have to talk about it. Just really, truly wanted a battled and wanted to choose a consequence.

I pulled over. We were at KFC. I did not really want to eat there, but I also did not plan on having to ask my child to get out of the car. "Sweetheart, you are no longer being safe. If you feel like you can calm ..." "SHUT UP!"

*which, in our home, is secret code for ...*

"Sure, I'd be happy to come around and help you get out of the car."

Of course, by the time I get out of the car, they were getting out and slammed the door just as hard as they could. I told them that I would drive back around and pick them up once I was done ordering. They smacked the side mirror and yelled, "Leave me ALONE!"

Happily, my dear ... happily.

KFC is not a favorite, but their biscuits do make good comfort food!

Got my food and pulled back around in the parking lot. My child came up and just stood at the window, staring at me. "Honey, why don't you get back in once you have fixed the mirror." They did. Of course, it wasn't in a calm and cool way, but they did get it done.

On the way home, I watched them regulate and apologize, so I made my guess (one day we'll be able to do this first thing ... one day ...). "I'm going to guess you had a great time yesterday. However, the lies inside of you told you all night long that you don't deserve good things, so you went looking for a battle today. Why do you think you might have done that? Or maybe I'm totally off base."

Big explosion WITH tears, "BECAUSE I'M BAD!"

We broke it down slowly. The big clincher is because they have done so many bad things. And why has they make these choices? Oh, right, because they were hurt. AND ... what if ... they had always gotten everything they needed? What if there was no extreme poverty in Haiti and all of their needs were met?

"I wouldn't have attachment disorder and I would not have moved a bunch and been hurt more and I would still be with my birth family."

"Right. What would you be? How would you be?"

"Like everybody else."

"So ... you weren't born this way. The only reason you act the way you do is because of what happened to you. YOU are not bad."

We practiced saying affirmation phrases.

And we arrived at home and carried our conversation into the kitchen where we hugged and they made a sandwich.

Six hugs thus far.

Painted fingernails for a bonding activity.

They requested 20 minutes of sewing together (trying to remake an old pair of pants into a skirt). Knocked that out, and broke off a needle at the tail end of it.

They have since apologized for a wee bit-o-crazy in the car, and was very worried they did permanent damage to the side mirror.

I'm tired.

But I'm still in.


Hannah_Rae said...

Argh! I needed this script YESTERDAY!!! CHRISTINE!!! YESTERDAY!!!

Okay. I can forgive myself for blowing up and not saying what I know needs to be said and doing what I know needs to be done. Today is a new day.

The attachment challenge is totally on hold until there are 3 fewer aunts and uncles around.

LOVE YOU! Next time please be psychic and write things the day BEFORE they happen. Thank you.


Anonymous said...


GB's Mom said...

Boy, do you have stamina! Great Job!

Diana said...

Gosh...and all I got was some screaming and a some pee and poop where those things don't belong. I'm still in, too. It's hard, though. Had lots of extended family stuff going today, so I havne't done so well today.

Annie said...

I'm not doing all that well with the challenge - with either radlet OR Easy Boy. Easy Boy has a friend over, so hugs are NOT a good plan, and he isn't too in to giving me time, either.

My favorite catch phrase to date:

"I hate fun!"

Anonymous said...

someone needs to make a seriously hardcore mixed drink right about now - oh heck, make your own - you've earned it!

oh yeah, and I may be borrowing "Yeah, good for ME!" - it's pretty awesome!

Birthblessed said...

So after the really huge, loud, cursing fit at me because he doesn't like the food offerings I've made..... how am I *supposed* to take the "gotta go, Mommy" and quick hug as he runs out the door, followed by a texted "sorry, Mommy."

AS IF he ever calls me mommy. Either grow up and get out, or STHU. So today he starts to yell at me as if it's my fault his GF has plans other than him. I tell him we can't talk til he's ready to use a nicer tone of voice than yelling at me with evil eyes. Finally we get it all talked out, and a friend comes over and she and I take our collective 10 children to Emma Long. And he's pretty much nice to be with and even drives us home. Go figure. How long til he yells and curses at me again? Who knows.

Kerrie said...

Shoot! The 7-year-old version of that happened to me today and I DID NOT see the "why" until you wrote your story! I totally missed it! Dang it! Oh, the things I could have said! I am never going to rock as much as you! NEVER! ARRRGH!!!

Kerrie said...

Oh, and, side-note: I love the "secret code" thing so much that today the Cuddle Bear said, "Mommy? Does everyone have Secret Code?"

Why yes, love, they do. Ohhhh, yes they do.

Misty said...

I am so amazed by you. you just deal with it so well. SO well... you... wow. I honestly don't even know what to say. seriously. How cliche is it to say "i want to be like you"? Because I would totally rather respond like this, than the way i do...

Stephanie said...

God that is so frustratingly unbelievably sad...that they could enjoy a good time and KNOW it was a good time and that they did thing right and that they got good feedback from their parents and then have that ugliness inside them tell them that they deserve none of it and then believe that they are bad. I just want to kick something's ass when i read that. I want to come over and give her 10 hugs. I want to say the eff word and get mad. sigh....

J. said...

You go girl! I love that she thought she really broke the mirror, remorse, wow.
It's 9:15 and we have 2 hugs down and some serious cuddling in due to a conversation over BMom and then Fudge crying and then Calvin getting angry cause Fudge got more of my attention... totally spontanious discussion but fits in with the goals... sometimes my kids are good like that, bringing shit up to make my life easier :P

Happymom4 aka Hope Anne said...

In my experience, once they start to get genuinely worried that they might have damaged something, that's a good bit of progress. My recovering RAD Dd is loving all the extra hugs. ;-) We'll see what happens in a few days.

Shan said...

I really like your vampire teeth. You have amazing restraint! Very nicely played.

My seven year old is more like a five year old and doesn't have the girth, wit, or words to call us things or harm us.

When he's off he goes from giggly gremlin messing with the electricity and us non stop- to screaming hand clinched rage, crying, and lots of grrrrr sounds.

He is totally developing a conscience he didn't use to have and is regulating quicker and quicker. It's been so nice lately. Now his issues seem to mimic Autism more than anything, but it's ever changing.

I'm storing all of this away and developing my patience for the day he curses me out or blames everything on me. In the meantime, I'll do the hugging and bonding portion of your exercises.

Keep up the awesome parenting Christine and club!! You are making huge strides with every painful gesture!!

Country mom said...

Ok so you are inspiring me and I may sit down and have that talk with my radlet.
This morning in church he decided to sit on my lap. He does this often in church because he has learned that all the old ladies think it's so sweet and fawn over him when he sits on my lap in church. Often he also manages some elbows to the ribs for me too. Today I decided, "hey an opportunity to get some of those hugs in." Could not get him to look at me, though he did ask loud questions about everything the pastor said. (another thing that the old ladies think is soooo sweet) As I was getting those hugs in I noticed the smell. Honestly, I have sinus issues and so often really don't notice it, but I sniffed him after dd who had been sitting next to me, moved over a ways when he got in my lap, muttering soemthing about his oder. Hmm, you guys were right, there is a sour oder. I realized that while this has not been as much of an issue to me, it has totally been an issue for poor dd who has a very sensitive nose. Anyway, got the hugs in, but then had some food issues during lunch and lots of trying to be the center of attention. I mostly ignored it though let him no later that I had indeed noticed and I was not going to do anything about it. (he escalates if he thinks he got away with something, but coming down to hard on things also makes him escalate, so I often just mention to him that I noticed he did such and such, and I will also mention the probably reason and then just drop it) I took a nice nap that I needed and will work on the time with him later. So far the only thing he wants to do "with" me is he wants me to watch him play video games, or at least be in the room. He talks non stop to the game, repeating every phrase he has hurt his teen brothers use when they play. Like right now, he is playing Wii basketball and he missed a basket so he yelled "that was a lucky shot". LOL. He is ten, but he is emotionally maybe five. Now he is restarting the game everytime he misses and blaming the game, so I think I will be stopping that soon and suggesting another activity so my computer time is over.

Jennie said...

lol Sissy does the ridiculous outfit dressing All.The.Time.

I have one IRL friend whose RAD puts her swimsuit on inside out so the boob cups are dangling for all the world to see.

Sissy has caught on that she is not to prompt affection but wait for me to give it so now she says "mom, when you're ready, you can give me a hug" which is hysterical! So of course, I'm never "ready" lmao

meagan101430 said...

Okay, just an update on how we are doing with the challenge thus far. I was totally into it and thought that it wouldnt be too different than what we were already practicing. WOW wa I wrong. I did realize that I was doing the requirements whenever we could; more so when it was convienent not daily. SOOO here we were yesterday at my oldest daughter's (not a Radish) goat show and I am trying to figure out how I am going to fit all of this in! Our bonding time was having a straw party preparing the pens for the goats to go into. The hugs I am getting in, but now how am I going to attend to her desires for 20 minutes and not have goats running around like crazy or have my daughter miss being in the showring when she was supposed to??? Okay, got lucky and they took a lunch intermission. My radish decided to take a walk and look into all the barns with me and just talk. It worked out! However, now we are dealing with a lot of defiance today, I am chugging along!

The Lundys said...

*sigh* i know it's rude to feel better when others feel your pain, but i do, sorry! thanks for sharing. i'm kinda sorry i checked in though, i've been lazy and was perfectly content (though not at all happy), and dangit, now i've been challenged. shoot.

Anonymous said...

Wow, i am more amazed by you all the time.

It also clarifies some of the differences between raising a RAD and raising a bipolar . . . the bipolar IS intrinsic to them. They have to learn to live with it. The demons are internal, not from an external source.