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#91 of 110 Old 01-15-2008, 12:42 AM
 
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dm, I am glad things seemed to have...leveled, maybe, is that the right word? I haven't been where you are regarding RAD and such, but I do know what it's like to feel overwhelmed and that it just isn't going to get any better, so why bother trying. Sometimes just knowing that something is going to give soon can make all the difference in the world. I think using the date night childcare sounds like an excellent idea. And I would ask if Desta would be able to possibly be included, in case her friend isn't available. It wouldn't hurt to have a back up plan, and i know that a similar program here did make age exceptions on a case by case basis depending on the behaviors that had to be managed. I also think that being able to attend to your shrine will be helpful. I have a good friend who is Buddhist, and I can tell when he hasn't been able to meditate and pray regularly--it shows on him as worry and stress. Yet when he is praying regularly, he is calm and seemingly unflappable. You have been on mind my and prayers much lately--I hope things continue to feel better for you and Desta.
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#92 of 110 Old 01-22-2008, 05:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I talked to Catholic Social Services today and our intake appointment is next Friday. Yay!

dm
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#93 of 110 Old 01-22-2008, 06:24 PM
 
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i hope you get some good help from them.

Mama to Jet 6/05, Marvel 8/06 and Cash and Fox 2/09
Expecting Ada Marianne 11/14
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#94 of 110 Old 01-22-2008, 07:04 PM
 
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Sorry to take so long in replying to this. I am actually momtomany with passwerd probs that have been 10 days not getting resolved. You are in such a hard place. You are brave and strong and human. I have been where you are the best that anyone can share experiences.

Choose your battles, or as someone I know once put it, "that's not a hill I choose to die on" yes respite within a group situation. Easter seals here had good respite for this situation. You don't have to make everything an issue because she is yanking your chain and it's starting to tug. let her know she has not got all of that power.

Read everything and get as much free support from adoption support networks to phone assistance.

Be kind to yourself. This is a thankless job for a long time.

Trust yourself, I have read you. You love your kiddoand you are struggling. Any one of us would be too.

With RAD, lower age expectations by average of 2 years. That is what I have read and what therapist told me.

Time for you and partner is more important then eating!!! Well, it's right up there.

No when to cry uncle, circle the wagons around you and let friends and family unload some of the work for you. Send her to everything that is highly structured that you can find and afford.

Get her into a group if there is one with kids with RAD.

Keep posting. I have a 20 year old who was as yours and is now just not making good decisions. I am praying for peace for you. momtomany
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#95 of 110 Old 01-22-2008, 07:04 PM
 
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Sorry to take so long in replying to this. I am actually momtomany with passwerd probs that have been 10 days not getting resolved. You are in such a hard place. You are brave and strong and human. I have been where you are the best that anyone can share experiences.

Choose your battles, or as someone I know once put it, "that's not a hill I choose to die on" yes respite within a group situation. Easter seals here had good respite for this situation. You don't have to make everything an issue because she is yanking your chain and it's starting to tug. let her know she has not got all of that power.

Read everything and get as much free support from adoption support networks to phone assistance.

Be kind to yourself. This is a thankless job for a long time.

Trust yourself, I have read you. You love your kiddoand you are struggling. Any one of us would be too.

With RAD, lower age expectations by average of 2 years. That is what I have read and what therapist told me.

Time for you and partner is more important then eating!!! Well, it's right up there.

No when to cry uncle, circle the wagons around you and let friends and family unload some of the work for you. Send her to everything that is highly structured that you can find and afford.

Get her into a group if there is one with kids with RAD.

Keep posting. I have a 20 year old who was as yours and is now just not making good decisions. I am praying for peace for you. momtomany
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#96 of 110 Old 02-01-2008, 12:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My mom took Desta for the weekend last weekend. I was amazed by how I felt during that time. Honestly, I barely thought about Desta, and that in itself was a big step. Normally I spend a great deal of time worrying about her and the things she's doing and the way it impacts our family. While she was gone, we were very busy with some household repairs, and we just did our thing ... without having to worry about Desta's reactions and moods and stuff. It all felt very normal ... and not thinking about her for 48 hours was very liberating.

I'm hanging on for next Friday, when we have our intake appointment with Catholic Social Services.

This morning, Desta became enraged with me because I said that "next day" and "Wednesday" don't rhyme. Normally I stay out of that stuff because it's not worth making a big deal about, but Ramona came to me and said, "Desta is saying that "next day" and "Wednesday" rhyme and I don't think they do. Do they?" I said that they don't, and Desta started yelling at me that they actually do, and trying to show me how they do. She was mispronouncing Wednesday as "WENST-day." She called me stupid for not knowing that they rhyme and accused me of always taking Ramona's side. I said, "Well, it's not really important whether they rhyme or not" and went about what I was doing, but I got the full-on Desta treatment for daring to contradict her.

I can't WAIT to get the counseling started!!

dm
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#97 of 110 Old 02-01-2008, 01:06 PM
 
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dm -- i was coming here to post today to see how things are going.

glad you had a great weekend.

i am even more glad you have your intake soon

Aimee

Aimee + Scott = Theodore Roosevelt (11/05) and 23 months later Charles Abraham (10/07)....praying for a little sister; the search starts May 2014
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#98 of 110 Old 02-01-2008, 02:00 PM
 
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It's good to hear that you're out of crisis mode and things are balancing out, to some extent. Counseling sound really good, it's awesome that you've been able to find so many resources. I can't imagine the amount of energy you have to accomplish all of this.

New signature, same old me: Ann- mama of 2 boys and 2 girls, partnered to a fabulous man.
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#99 of 110 Old 02-01-2008, 06:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by annethcz View Post
I can't imagine the amount of energy you have to accomplish all of this.
That's part of the problem. I don't have that amount of energy, so I'm always exhausted.

Today has been a crummy day. Desta's school is closed due to inclement weather, which is a joke because it's only raining (we were supposed to get ice and snow, but we didn't). Desta has been in a bad mood all day, and she's been doing this thing that she does where she says a bunch of things that aren't true (and that she knows aren't true) so she can either 1) get angry with me for disagreeing with her (which I try to avoid doing) 2) call me stupid for agreeing with her (which I try to avoid doing) or 3) get nasty with me for refusing to take the bait. She does this repeatedly, one after another, in a very conversational tone of voice, and then looks at me very intently to see how I will respond. I try to get away with a very noncommittal "Oh" or "Did you read that somewhere?" but it honestly doesn't seem to matter how I respond, she seems to just be trying to pick a fight.

Since she didn't have school today, she wanted to go to homeschool swim and gym, but she said she wasn't going to swim because she didn't want to have to wash her hair. I told her she could wear a swim cap, but she said no. I told her that I wasn't going to pay for swim and gym if she wasn't going to swim. I said that she could pay the fee if she wanted to not swim, but she declined and said she's just sit in the lobby and wait. Then a bunch of the homeschool group people decided to go to the children's museum, and Ramona and Efram wanted to do that, so we did that instead of swim and gym. Desta was sulky and pouty with me the whole time and kept trying to isolate herself from us. When it was time for lunch I told her we were going to eat and she said she wasn't hungry. A few minutes later she wandered into the lunchroom and got angry because we ate without her.

It's really never ending. She creates situations to be angry about.

dm
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#100 of 110 Old 02-01-2008, 06:36 PM
 
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On top of the physical exhaustion, that sounds so emotionally exhausting s I know how I feel when our family is out of balance for just a few days, and I just can't imagine the stress you are going through. I really hope things head in a better direction once the counselng starts. I am glad you had a good weekend, though. I can't remember, were you ever able to find a counselor just for you, to help you process and deal? Ti soundslike you are so overdue for some dm time. s again, because that's all I can do from here.
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#101 of 110 Old 02-01-2008, 06:47 PM
 
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wish I had some words of wisdom to offer, but mostly, just hang in there! It sounds like she is needing so, so, so much right now. I hope things improve with counseling.

We're Tiffani , Mark , Lucy (9/99) , Dexter (8/01) ,and Zachary Marvin (3/07) and Naomi Rose (6/09), home 11/10, by way of Ugandan adoption.

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#102 of 110 Old 02-02-2008, 12:36 AM
 
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Originally Posted by dharmamama View Post
I'm hanging on for next Friday, when we have our intake appointment with Catholic Social Services....

I can't WAIT to get the counseling started!!

dm
Ahh the light of an appointment in the near future I remember almost a year ago, we were living for the May 10th. When we felt like we were just on the verge of running out of our house screaming, we would get this glimmer in our eye and say "May 10th" That day did not turn out to be the silver bullet, but it gave us something to live for Success has come in phases since that day, but I really hope next Friday is the big day that gets the ball rolling quickly toward change for your family!
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#103 of 110 Old 02-02-2008, 02:01 AM
 
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((((((((((s))))))))))))) dm!

RedOak ~ Momma to DS (8) , DS (4) , DD (3) , & DD 9/10 ~
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#104 of 110 Old 02-06-2008, 03:48 AM
 
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I come here *so* infrequently, I don't know if you even want to hear what I have to say. But, living this same journey, I thought maybe I could offer some experiences of things that help me survive.

First and foremost, we learned 4 years ago that getting away sometimes is vital for me. At that time, we were dealing with PTSD with attachment issues but not RAD. Still, I learned that I needed to take nights off when the pressure inside of me reached a boiling point. Since we had no resources for respite, we started taking turns. When I need a night off, Dh takes over fully for the night. When DH needs a night off, I take over fully for the night. When we take a night off, the other parent doesn't even call us on the cell unless there's an emergency.

In fact, I just took a night off on Saturday and DH is going out tomorrow night. What we do when we are off doesn't matter so much as being OFF. I've sat and read a book in a coffee shop. I've gone shopping with a friend (for 7 hours, it was great fun). I've even sat in my car and listened to music. What matters is that I remove myself and walk away from the pressure. And, since 9 times out of 10 the aggression is aimed at *me*, its vital that I get out for awhile.

Second, I want to share a RAD story to give you a smile. Last year, I had the child with RAD folding clothes in the living room. He was slowly and painstakingly putting every item in its own pile so that he was taking over the entire living room. Ultimately, DH came home from work and decided he was taking us for dinner as a break. As I stepped over the clothes, I made the comment that said child was just doing this with the clothes to make me mad. Dh looked at me and said I sounded paranoid, why would I say such a thing. Because 10 minutes before DH came home from work, I asked said child why he was doing that with the clothes and his response was, "To make you mad."

Third, I've reached the point in this journey that I've let go. That doesn't mean I've given up on the child with RAD. But, I've quit trying to heal him. When given him the chance to live. Like Desta, had he stayed in his birth country, he would have died from his medical issues. We've loved him, fought fiercely for him and giving him every chance to heal. And, somewhere along the way, I realized that we can give him the world. But, ultimately it has to be his choice to embrace the world we've tried to give him.

We can want it for him. We can try to give it to him. We can move mountains and desperately think that its such an easy thing for him to let go of his mistrust and let us love him. But, unless he chooses that for himself, there's little more we can do but co-exist under the same roof until he's of age. And, quite seriously, if he won't embrace this for himself, then we have to be content to co-exist and recognize that when its all said and done maybe all we'll do for him is give him the chance to live.

Its a sad reality to face about our children we so desperately want to see healed. But, I finally realized why our AT was so thrilled when we brought oldest ds in for PTSD and attachment issues for intensive therapy. Therapist said he had never met another child who wanted his own healing as much as ds. Said he'd never had another child embrace his life and his chance to heal like this child had. It was like leading a thirsty doe to water and watching him suck the life back into his soul. I didn't get it then. But when we started trying to work with his younger brother in therapy, I got it. We've had to stop therapy twice with this one because its pointless to drive over an hour, pay our co-pays and leave the other kids to be unsettled so he can stare at the wall and refuse to participate with his therapy.

But, at the end of the day, you have to know that you have given Desta a chance to live life. And maybe that's all she'll let you give her. Sure, you want to give her the world and not just something so basic. But, life is vital. You know what would have happened to Desta in Ethiopia. If all you give her is life and health, then its more than she had. And, in 5 years, she'll choose for herself what she does with that gift, even if she always rejects the gift of love and family you offer her as well. And, as long as she has life and health, she continues to have the chance to make a better choice with her own life and heart.
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#105 of 110 Old 02-06-2008, 04:20 AM
 
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that was beautiful, Cornelia!

We're Tiffani , Mark , Lucy (9/99) , Dexter (8/01) ,and Zachary Marvin (3/07) and Naomi Rose (6/09), home 11/10, by way of Ugandan adoption.

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#106 of 110 Old 02-06-2008, 10:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Cornelia, thank you very much.

dm
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#107 of 110 Old 02-11-2008, 06:37 AM
 
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I haven't had time to read all the messages, but I did read the first. I am an adoptive mom, to three kids, one of them having RAD. I know the depair you speak of. I know how you can go to sleep on day, waking up the next, having the same thing repeat over and over. There is no end. Giving up on the child is not the choice (I know you didn't say you would) and respite care is very good for both you and your child.

I have used respite care with one of my kids and it helped both of us very much. We did it for about one year. Finally one day, my child told the respite care mom that it was time to go home. My child stopped going for respite care (although there were times I wanted to send my child back for some more care). My child got to see how a healthy family functioned (a family who was not in the middle of a crisis from RAD) and this was great.

In the end, I did move to another state for one year so I could get Theraplay for all my kids. They all needed it, because they suffered too. It helped so much. At this time my child is doing great, and I have hope that the future is going to be bright.

With children who have RAD, you must:
Be consistant with routines and meals
Be loving even when your child acts like he or she hates you
Not react to the behaviour that your child is presenting...this is what the child wants.
Maintain controll over yourself, no hitting, shouting
Take time to love yourself, have time with your other children without your daughter.

Hugs to you mama. I know all too well what it is like, and the wrinkles and grey hairs are testament to what it can do to a mother.

Jyotsna

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#108 of 110 Old 02-13-2008, 12:38 PM
 
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I haven't read the whole thread, just your first posting, so perhaps this has already been said. I guess this may be advice, but since it's only a viewpoint suggestion, I hope that's okay. It just sounds like you're having such a hard time and anything that could make it easier on you would help.

We looked at doing long-term foster care, but chose not to because our kids were younger than the kids available. What the facilitators of the training said made a lot of sense and I wonder if it would lighten your load.

Do NOT expect a loving, reciprocal relationship with these kids. It would be nice, but it can be so hard to attain and there are much more attainable (and necessary) things you can do. Make your goal one of teaching them to be independent adults. Teach them about checkbooks, bus schedules, work ethic, finishing school, how to rent an apartment, how to cook, wash laundry, etc.

It would be nice if you could teach them how to have loving, attached relationships with others. That will or won't happen. Probably, the best way that can happen is through role modeling. What they see happening between you and the rest of the family. What they someday realize you were doing for them. This little girl is hurt beyond what I can imagine. It may be she will never have the ability to love as you do, but if she can at least stay out of debt, put a roof over her head, hold a job and cook a meal, at least she can survive. Then maybe, somewhere down the road she will look back at all the wonderful, loving sacrificing things you did for her and she will have an epiphany or not. And someday, when she is grown and gone and caring for herself as best as she can, you will be able to look back and see how much you gave her. It may be you are the only one that says, "Job well done." Not because she wouldn't say it, but because she can't say it. When she's not on food stamps or in and out of mental health institutions, you can be proud. (And if she is, that is her destiny, not your failings.)

I have stepkids whose mother has done what she can to poison them against me. She's been somewhat successful, though I think when they are older, they will realize what she did and they will put more of their feet into my camp. It's been hard, but I look at all I've accomplished. I taught them to type, to cook (the eldest said, "It's ironic that the only think I know how to cook is vegetarian." No, it's not ironic, I'm just the only one who took the time to teach him to cook.) I've taught them about saving and staying out of debt. The tantrums stopped at our house at a young age, so even though they still continue "over there," at least these kids know what it's like to interact without tantrums. So many other things I've taught them so they can succeed. Someday they will figure out who taught them self-sufficiency. I think your daughter will do the same.

Good luck, I haven't done RAD, but I've done 100x worse than the movie "Stepmom." It's hard.
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#109 of 110 Old 02-13-2008, 07:46 PM
 
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dharmamama --- hey is THIS week your 3 hours a day every day of therpy week???????

Just wanted to remind you we are all thinking about you guys.



HUGS

Aimee

Aimee + Scott = Theodore Roosevelt (11/05) and 23 months later Charles Abraham (10/07)....praying for a little sister; the search starts May 2014
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#110 of 110 Old 02-13-2008, 07:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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No, that doesn't start until March 10th.

dm
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