This blog is my place to vent and share resources with other parents of children of trauma. I try to be open and honest about my feelings in order to help others know they are not alone. Therapeutic parenting of adopted teenagers with RAD and other severe mental illnesses and issues (plus "neurotypical" teens) , is not easy, and there are time when I say what I feel... at the moment. We're all human!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Books and Methods Review - 99 Ways to Drive Your Child Sane

99 Ways to Drive Your Child Sane by Brita St. Clair 

This little book is full of wild ideas and hysterical humor to bring the laughter back into a home with an emotionally disturbed child. Need a good laugh? This book will do it! It includes lots of "one-liners" and silly, fun ways to help parents avoid anger around tough topics. Written by a very experienced and loving Therapeutic Mom with years of success helping tough kids heal.

A few examples:
For kids that pee in their rooms - Sprinkle peas around the room at night or while the child is gone. When the child is awake or at home, you discover the peas, get a bowl to collect them and show your delight over the child growing peas by peeing. "I knew this would happen someday if you just peed enough peas were sure to grow." Make sure you have peas (clean ones please) that night for dinner. Those of us from the south especially like to use black-eyed peas.

One-liner: "Bummer"

This is commonly used by therapeutic parents working with unattached children and was not invented by me.

Something fun to do with it though is to keep a tally sheet or put a sticker on your arm every time you say "Bummer." See how many times you can use this one-liner in one day instead of getting into an argument. Don't explain what you are doing either. Your child will have to wonder why you are putting stickers on yourself.

This reminds me of Behavior Bingo - 
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Behavior Bingo is something I heard about from somewhere on the web. As a way to cope with her children's behaviors, this mom started pretending that whenever her child did something annoying (like pitch a fit, or paint with poo, or call her a $%#*... she would sometimes act really excited like she'd gotten to put a marker on her imaginary bingo board. 

She didn't tell her kids what she was doing or why. Every now and then she would yell out Bingo! She usually thanked the child for the behavior (again without telling the child why), and rewarded herself in some way (got an ice cream or a margarita or whatever). She said it made her feel better and confused the heck out of the child(ren).

A mom on one of my groups actually plays behavior bingo with her spouse and created this card.

When the child is acting like you are dumb or asking head hassling questions he knows the answers to, point at your forehead and say, "Does it say stupid here?" If he says yes, then say, "Well erase it quick, you don't want people thinking you have a stupid mom," or "Erase it, that's supposed to be our secret"

Marythemom:  *****Quick, fun read.  I highly recommend it to help with the stress. 

Here're some fun one-liners to help with your stress!

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