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!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

More Good, Bad and Ugly Updates

Could use more prayers (as usual).

Good news: Bear is still living with friends. He's still coming home almost every night for his meds, but...

Bad news: He's no longer going to therapy, starting to skip school, and apparently has decided he's done with family.

Good news: Although Bob has been home with mono for over a month, she has mild symptoms, is keeping up with her school work, and is actually cuddly. I'm really enjoying this mother/ daughter time.

Bad news: The doctor says she can go back to school as soon as she's fever-free (and she's probably not really contagious as long as she keeps her saliva to herself. No licking! *grin*). Still no sign of being ready to go back to school.

Good news: My baby turned 13 last week. The fever he had earlier in the week was apparently not Mono.

Bad news: My BABY turned 13 last week. Now all my kids are teenagers.

Good news: While he doesn't enjoy it, Hubby has a good job that pays the bills and while extra income from me working would be great, we can afford for me to stay home and take care of the kids for now.

Bad news: Hubby is feeling guilty about his contract job not having health insurance so is thinking about taking any job he can get so we can have health insurance that will pay for Kitty to go to partial day hospitalization when she gets home.

Ugly news: In a discussion with Kitty's family therapist (without Kitty in the room), we were told that the residential treatment center doesn't think their program is going to work out for Kitty. They plan to start transitioning her back home over the next 4-6 weeks.

The reasons they gave:

  • She's too young developmentally. The therapist mentioned regression to about age 6yr.

  • The removal of some of her major stressors (family and peers) has enabled her to suppress most of her anxiety so that she doesn't have to work on it while in therapy/ group. She just denies having anything to talk about. Plus she's mostly able to control her behaviors/ emotions because she's not overwhelmed (at home, the smallest issue pushes her over the edge because she's always right there on the edge).

  • Sometimes she trots out a trauma from her past in therapy or group, but it's like she's just telling a story. Not actually processing the trauma. My guess is these are events she's already processed.

  • She's so "therapized" she can practically run the sessions, but when she's actually in the moment and gets emotional, that part of her brain shuts down and she goes into fight, flight or freeze mode, so she is unable to access the skills and training when she actually needs it.

After the family therapy session, we had a visitation with Kitty, and basically nothing's changed... except she's a little more angry with us for sending her away. I'm assuming when she gets home we'll get a honeymoon period for as long as she can control her emotions... which might be only minutes.

Everyone has been telling her she's 16 (almost 17) and she's entitled to all the privileges that go with that (watching teen TV shows, hanging out with friends at the mall, learning to drive...)... but she can barely function at a basic level (hygiene, simple chores, maintaining emotional stability...).

She's NOT diagnosed FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome) or intellectually disabled (although her processing is well below 70). In fact she's borderline on pretty much everything (including Borderline Personality Disorder) so she doesn't qualify for services and no one sees any obvious disabilities that we can point to and say... "quit telling her she's normal!"

The hardest part is Bob(15) is in the same grade as Kitty. Biodd is smart, responsible, emotionally stable (well, as emotionally stable as any other teenage girl) ... and Kitty is sooo jealous. Just being in the same house makes her worse.

Kitty thinks she's "normal," and therefore we're just being cruel and unusual, love Bob more, and think she's bad and needs to be punished.

After the last couple of weeks having just Bob and Ponito at home, I've realized how hard it's going to be to have Kitty back home; although it will help that Bear is out of the house (assuming he doesn't come back). I worry that both of the kids are going to go back to disappearing and spending all their time in their rooms for the next few years or longer. I worry that we're out of options since the psych hospitals have said there's nothing they can do for Kitty. This was the only treatment center that seemed like it would make a difference.

I'm terrified.

We aren't going to tell Kitty for awhile, in the hope that she'll continue to work hard while she's there.


Sophie said...

Wow. So much to deal with. Prayers for you and your family.

Marty Walden said...

Sometimes there aren't even words to describe the situations we live through. It's just our life. Lifting you up tonight and praying there will be a positive resolution to at least some of the issues. Thanks for the sweet comment on my blog. 25 years is a long time!