If she somehow manages to save some money (entirely possible with such a large amount of cash and no major bills), should we just allow her to lose her SSI (not being able to have +$2K in assets)? Should I force her to move to an apartment, knowing that she doesn't yet have all the independent living skills she needs to live on her own? If she doesn't pay her rent or bills, and gets evicted what are my moral obligations? If she takes her medication incorrectly or not at all, do I need to do more than call an ambulance when she becomes psychotic or suicidal? If she can't get insurance in the other state, should I pay the $1800/mo for her medications? What about a psychiatrist? therapist? food? $500+ cell phone? plane ticket home?
As for the FAIR Club, what I said was that it does not work well for Kitty and Bear (versus your statement that it doesn't work at all). Neither do timeouts, grounding, sticker/level charts, “tough love,” taking away their allowance, taking away their cell phones... some of this is because these are not the right discipline for a kid their physical and/or emotional age, (I'm assuming you are not recommending timeouts for either one of them), and some is because these methods don't work for kids with their issues. Obviously these techniques work for other kids (sometimes). We've adapted the FAIR Club for Kitty and Bear. Just like we adapted it for Ponito at age 7 versus Bob at age 12. We used this method for as long as it was needed for Bob and Ponito. It worked pretty well.
The FAIR Club is not designed for really young kids, so it did not work for Kitty and Bear who were only physically 11 and 13 - emotionally they were MUCH younger. Then we discovered that the structure and support of being in the FAIR Club really worked for them, but calling it the FAIR Club triggered Kitty. So they live in the FAIR Club - we just stopped calling it that. Recently I felt I had no other consequence options and tried the Adult FAIR Club. It had mixed results. Couldn't hurt to try.
I've always advised people reading my blog, or any other book, technique, method, to use what they need, and leave the rest. Obviously this applies to the FAIR Club too.
So again, what do you suggest? Obviously you know what I should be doing. Or maybe you feel that I shouldn't be doing anything? Possibly you think that my kids are adults and no longer need the structure and support that we provided (or maybe you think they never did need it). Maybe you think they aren’t really mentally ill, that they have no brain injuries, that there is no trauma, that they’re perfectly normal kids, and therefore the way I treat them is abusive? If that’s the case then, yes, if my kids are totally normal then the therapeutic parenting and extensive structure that we’ve provided is not at all appropriate. Treating them differently than the non-mentally ill, neurotypical children in the home would be extremely unfair and pretty awful.
Maybe you believe that their issues are all because I'm a bad parent? I’ve been accused of this before while Bear was in residential treatment finally getting properly diagnosed and medicated. He’d been with us only 6 months, raging most of the time until the psychiatrist decided to chemically restrain him while we waited for a bed to open up in RTC. Bear somehow convinced his therapist that he was there because I “hugged him too much.” He was already 14, but maybe during those brief 6 months I’d known him I broke him.
Under this assumption, then in the 4 years that Bear lived with us (I'm not counting those 1st 6 months when he was not properly diagnosed or medicated, and the 6 months he was in residential treatment), obviously I broke him...
...nope, sorry, I'm not taking the blame for the years of trauma, attachment disorder, brain injury and mental illness that occurred long before my I met him, which have led to my child's intense need for structure and support.
You say Kitty "doesn't love me" because I “treat her like a prisoner” and “play favorites”, and not because of her mental illnesses, trauma, brain injury and severe attachment disorder, which causes permanent brain damage. I’d love to know where you got your psychiatric degree that allows you to determine that Kitty’s well-documented diagnoses are all in MY head. Honestly, I do understand your problems with this, because no one who doesn’t live this life is able to comprehend what it’s like. You are not alone in your inability to understand the full scope of how Kitty’s unique, interacting combination of issues effect her. Many of Kitty’s teachers and people on her “team, ” try to put Kitty into a box that fits their experience (maybe they have personal experience with bipolar disorder or have worked with a suicidal child or one who is intellectually disabled), but they don’t understand how Kitty’s many diagnoses and trauma interact (or assume she should be “over it” and since she’s obviously not “over it” – they assume there must be some more recent trauma which Kitty is only too happy to provide – through the lens of her distorted perception of reality).
More importantly, Kitty does love me. Like most kids, she gets mad at me and she’s been known to say she hates me, but pretty soon after she "flips a switch" and is all loving again. Again, believe what you want, but this is not about me or my parenting techniques, this is about her well-documented mental illnesses and trauma issues.
Yes, I treat all my kids differently from each other (adopted and bio). They are different individuals with very different needs. I remember as a teenager feeling that my mom loved my sister more than she did me... and my sister felt the same way. Most kids feel they are being treated differently than everyone else. It sucks to be different and have issues. Kitty wants to be like everyone else, so she fabricates reasons to deny our credibility.
We do the best we can to keep from damaging Kitty’s self-esteem and help her feel our love. Unfortunately her RAD and Borderline Personality Disorder don't allow her to see it all of the time.
I'm curious. Why do you believe so strongly that I'm a bad parent out to hurt my child? Is your perception colored by your own experience? Honestly, you've made some really big leaps here if you're basing your opinion on the limited information that I choose to share here. You've obviously been reading this blog for awhile so you know my daughter is seriously mentally ill and has other major issues, why would you assume this is about me? Why would you assume this is about money, or loving my biokids more, or wanting to be a warden? Have I seriously given you reason to believe this is who I am? I’m not perfect, but neither am I a greedy, child abusing, sadist.
You say I’ve failed my child. All I have left to say is who are you to judge me?