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!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Giving Bear what he wants

I have to laugh. Saturday at therapy I sprung my plan to try taking Bear off his meds. I did not prep/warn the therapist ahead of time, and I have to say he (the therapist) is really starting to impress me. he picked up on some interesting things... like the fact that Bear, who has been insisting he was going to drop all his meds and go to live with his grandfather, instantly balked when I said I was going to help him. The therapist called him on it and asked if it was because I suggested it (Bear wouldn't admit to that).

I believe that Bear is fighting this for several reasons, with the two most important ones being that he knows he can't go off his meds and maintain control (he as much as said as much when he said he didn't want to do it now), and the second one that he doesn't trust my motives and thinks I'm out to get him.

The truth is that I am out to get him. My motives are honorable, but for some reason I still feel guilty. I am setting him up for failure, and that just feels wrong (it feels more wrong to let Bear go forward with his self-destructive plans, but I still feel guilty). Hubby has been giving me a hard time about it too. I'll admit I probably do sound vindictive, and I've asked Hubby more than once for reassurance that I'm doing the right thing. I've told y'all my reasons. I just need lots of reassurance that I made the best choice.

Bear wanted to wait to change the meds. The therapist asked him why. When prodded, Bear gave different reasons, and when those were addressed, he just shut down and said we could do whatever we wanted. The therapist tried to get him to acknowledge that this was his choice, and commit to the conditions, but didn't really get compliance. That's OK. He doesn't need to acknowledge that he needs help and be in total agreement, he just needs to be informed and have all his concerns addressed so he can't say he didn't know about it.

Once we were all in "agreement" that we were a go for stepping down Bear's meds, and had talked about the reasons why and what it would mean if this works, then we started talking about how we were going to handle things during the experiment.

My biggest concern of course is the safety of the whole family. The therapist talked to Bear about being irritable (since he's already irritable this is a given). Bear said he was going to "just be handle it." *sigh* Yea, right.

We talked about how Kitty was going to have some major issues about this (him being unstable triggers mega-fears and memories for her - he's abused her in the past, and when he got kicked out of homes, she usually wasn't too far behind), plus Ponito is literally a third of his size so therefore we had to dicuss how we're going to deal with keeping the family safe. Bear said he would prefer that if I was seeing an issue that I "write it down." The therapist was startled by this, but this is how the school deals with things so it makes sense to me. My concern is that's fine if his hygeine is slipping, but not immediate issues with siblings.

One of our solutions was that we would "protect" Bear from the other kids, with both physical distance (like he'll be assigned the front seat in the van so he won't be rubbing elbows with the sibs) and he has to come to us when the other kids are annoying him. He is not rational about whether or not what they're doing is really annoying and he does not handle it appropriately.

Obviously we're waiting until we've had a chance to talk to his psychiatrist before we start changing his meds. So imagine my thrill to get 2 calls from him regarding his issues today - and we haven't even started changing his meds! The good news is he called me (that's almost like asking for help!), but how are we going to make it through this?!


GB's Mom said...

MK chose to do it the hard way (no meds). We let her because she was 18 and was legally considered an adult. It is still difficult to keep the younger ones safe- I have had to call the police several times. You are in my prayers.

marythemom said...

Hi GB's Mom! "The hard way" is exactly what we're trying to avoid. I just realized I didn't note what I'm hoping to get from this - future post! But the main thing is that I'm hoping he'll mess up so much that the court will get involved and mandate that he has to take his meds, and possibly lead to legal guardianship. Thank you for the prayers!


Miz Kizzle said...

Are you hoping the court will award you legal guardianship of Bear? Will that go hand in hand with him being declared incompetent to make his own decisions about things like where he lives after he turns 18?

RADMomINohio said...

Would it be best to maybe have a conversation with the police department in advance to give them some background as well as have a good understanding what to expect if you do need to call them? I've read another blog where a mother had met with the police in advance before an incident occurred just so everyone was on the same page, and it seemed to work for her.
I find it interesting too that Bear is now backpeddling on the meds issue. I've been there where we want the child to fail or get joy from seeing the child suffer the consequences of their actions, but I don't believe there should be any guilt involved. We all know we can't just tell our kids how to behave, they have to learn it on their own. So, we try to set up learning opportunities for them. That's how I look at it anyway.