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!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

"There was a little girl" poem

There was a little girl,
Who had a little curl,

Right in the middle of her forehead.

When she was good,

She was very good indeed,

But when she was bad she was horrid.

-- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

My mom used to recite this poem to me often as a child. She could tell stories about me that would "curl your hair!" *wink*

Now I have a curly haired boy.

There was a little jock,

Who had a curly lock,

Right in the middle of his forehead.

When he was good,

He was very good indeed,

But when he was bad he was horrid.

-- Marythemom
Bear has overcome so many of his issues. With the proper diagnoses, appropriate medications, a father who doesn't beat him, an overprotective mother who doesn't allow him to parent her, and a school that supervises his every step. He has done so well.
So why am I completely unable to trust him?! I am told repeatedly that I have to let my children earn privileges and trust or they'll give up. Every 6 weeks he comes home with As and Bs on his report card. His weekly progress report calls him a role model and praises his good choices. Hubby thinks he is becoming attached to us and his issues are normal teenage boy stuff. It's been a whole week and no word about bad behavior or choices from the public high school.
All I can see is the lying to my face, "I hate my biomom. I never want to talk to her. I don't want her to know anything about me." While at the same time he was calling her and talking to her on her home phone and cell as recently as a month ago. I understand his need to talk to her. I even understand his need to be sneaky about it (we had forbidden contact). I am just upset that he felt the need to lie and tell me that he hated her so much he didn't want to talk to her. I have NEVER criticized her, in fact I play devil's advocate and DEFEND her most of the time. I tell my kids REPEATEDLY that I know they love their biomom and that's OK.
I think Hubby is dead wrong about Bear attaching to us. I think now that Bear is able to control his emotions, he is able to keep them locked in a box deep inside him (festering and not being processed or healed). I think he had a better chance of healing when he had to open that box and "vent the volcano." We were told early on that we would make more progress with Bear then with Kitty because he wore his heart on his sleeve. Granted he usually showed anger instead of fear, stress, or any other emotion, but at least when he was upset- you knew it. After a blow-up he would talk about his feelings - and they were real.
Now it is so rare to see him showing emotion of any kind. This picture of him laughing is one of the few times since I've known him that I've seen him with more than a mild expression on his face - unless he was raging out of control, or sobbing or scared after a rage.
I pity any woman in the future who tries to have a relationship with him.


Lorraine Fuller said...

I don't know bear well enough commment, however I did want you to know one thing. I lived through an abusive childhood. It is possible to hate your birth birth parents and not want them to know anything about you, but at the same time feel compelled to try to talk to them. There are two reasons, one you are always trying to somehow earn thier love and respect, even though you know they are not capable of giving it. The second is you have to be sure they are alright. In many of these situations including, it sounds like bears, the mother is often more like a child and the child takes on a lot of responsibility early on. It's hard to just let that go. You already feel you are failing them by not being there to take care of them (remember feelings don't make sense, so it doesn't matter that the parent made the choice and that the parent is abusive) and so you feel compelled to check on them.
Don't know if this helps or not, but thought I would share.

Keri said...

haha - my mom used to say that rhyme to me too! I often worry about my daughter perhaps holding things in too. We've done SOOO much work, and my big fear is she'll reach adulthood without really clearing out all that crap.
Till then, we just keep plugging along...

lavendergardener said...

It could be a loyalty issue too. Sometimes kids have trouble admitting to themselves they can love us and love their bio families. I've had many kids tell me they hate their families while simultaneously trying to reconnect. He may have been trying to reassure you that he loves you not his biomom.