Originally Posted by momma4fun
sometimes i'm too critical of myself, but in a situation where my kid was stealing from me and lying from me, i think the biggest thing that would come up in my mind would be to figure out where i didn't set a good enough example that money wasn't something worth working for.
EDIT: bigeyes, I'm so not picking on you, just thinking out an example like yours
It was nerve wracking. You do ask yourself what makes them do things like that, especially
when all you get from them is I don't know
or lies when you ask them. We spent a year or so with shrinks who only made the situation worse, we tried everything we could think of. Unfortunately, we had to become a lot more authoritarian than we like, and she has to be treated like she's much younger than she is because psychologically she is.
The right therapist was a godsend.
In her case it's mostly a passive-aggressive thing. She gets mad, she steals something to get revenge. She gets caught, she deliberately does something to annoy someone else. She has to do something she doesn't particularly want to do, she drags it out as long as possible to make everyone have to wait on her and possibly not get to do something they want to do. It's a control issue, as in I don't need parents and I will not do anything I don't want to do. If I have to contribute in any way, I will make the rest of you miserable.
For as long as I've known her, whenever she opens or unwraps something, she drops the trash wherever she is, right on the floor. I don't have an explanation for that one at all, but she sweeps the floor a lot
because it's the only natural consequence we can think of for it.
After almost 4 years of pulling my hair out I finally learned my mantra; It's not my problem, it's your problem.
If she lies to me and says she emptied her pockets before putting her clothes in the hamper, when I start to load the laundry, her favorite jeans don't get washed in that load. Not my
problem, wear something else. If she lies to me about doing her homework, her teacher calls me to let me know she didn't follow directions and she gives her a make-up assignment to do over the weekend instead of watching a movie. Not my
problem, you should have done it the first time. We live in the tropics, so bugs can be a problem if you let them...she piled candy wrappers in drawers, on her closet floor, behind furniture, so now she has to keep gum and any candy she gets at Christmas/Halloween or as a treat in a tin in the kitchen where we can supervise and be sure the wrapper gets thrown away.
It all feels very Gestapo-like, but the alternative is to live in a pig-sty and/or constantly pick up after her, which I am not
going to do.
DS has the same kind of thing, though. If he doesn't empty his pockets, his favorite clothing doesn't get washed, and he's been grounded from all things electronic a few times. The difference is, he learns from a mistake and moves on, where dsd repeats the same mistake and seemingly doesn't make the connection between actions and consequences, which is all part of an attachment disorder. All you can do is repeat repeat repeat and hope
it sinks in.
I drove myself nuts trying to figure this one out with logic. There is no logic when you're dealing with an attachment disorder, that's the whole point. No cause and effect thinking, no learning from mistakes, no logic, lying about stuff that doesn't matter, bizarre behavior that drives you batty while you try to figure out why nothing works.
Then you find a therapist who actually knows what they're doing
and it's almost
magical. This has been the most frustrating, heartbreaking journey...dsd has endured so much weirdness and insanity in her short life and is so not to blame for the way she is, but it doesn't make it any less frustrating to deal with on a day to day basis to know that. She's making so much progress, but it's always going to be stressful feeling like we're forced to maintain such strict control over her environment. I don't like
it, but I can't argue with the results. I enjoyed parenting so much more when I was able to be relaxed and a bit more permissive, but the current needs of our family won't allow for that. As much as I don't
like having to question every little thing I do and having to plan out every move I make as a parent, I do
enjoy the relative peace we have in the household since we implemented the new system. I feel like the warden, but I'm not constantly on edge or simmering with rage, and she's definitely doing much better, so I have to live with that and accept it for what it is. And hope when she's older we can relax the rules some.
I remember my mom digging through my trash can in my room for no reason at all, just being nosy, and it infuriated me....so having to be all over dsd is kind of a pain to me now.