Monday, June 13, 2011

Day 322--Perseverence

It's been a long, exhausting weekend.

Attachment disorder mixed with hormones is not a pretty picture.  I feel as though I've been fighting a demon for days and I never know when it will rear its ugly head again.

I could try to describe the reactions of an attachment disordered child, but it's far too complex and would require me to relive the random dissociative threats he makes, as though they make perfect sense.

I saw a show one time about psychics and the skeptic on the show talked about cold readings.  Basically the psychic throws out a bunch of generic information very fast until he or she sees some sort of recognition, and then goes from there.  That describes my son very well.  He throws out tons of emotionally laden sentences very quickly with the hope all of the bat swinging will eventually hit the ball.  And, of course, sometimes it does.

One of the things many of my friends who have special needs children talk about is acceptance.  I may have posted about this before, but there is a movement in the special needs community to accept children how they are, rather than trying to "fix" them.  I can't imagine NOT wanting to fix my child.  I can't believe it's in his best interest to live this way, in a rageful impulsive fashion.  I simply don't believe that. I believe that my son wants to feel at peace but has no idea how to get there, and it's my job to help him figure that out.

Sometimes it does feel like you are literally battling the disorder to save the life of your child.

Attachment disorder, along with most emotional disorders, is something that I have a hard time wrapping my mind around being acceptable.  The anger, the manipulation, the lying and stealing and rage isn't acceptable, not only to me but to our society.  What's going to happen in four years when he's legally an adult?

If I admit to myself and to the world that I could see him becoming a stalker, or a theif, or a drug addict, does that make me a bad mother?  If I admit his behavior is beyond my control or help, does that make me a failure?  If I admit his behavior is devastating to his sister's development, does it mean I'm giving up?

Acceptance that this is his life is difficult, just as the idea of accepting that I cannot change him is difficult.  I honestly do not believe at this point I can change him.  He is always going to be impulsive.  He is always going to angry and see himself as a victim.  And he is always going to want his mother.  In his words, his "real" mother.

My daughter is struggling to live in our home right now because of her brother's behavior.  This weekend's blowup upset her tremendously.  I don't think she feels safe in her own home.  And after watching my son's absolute rage as he literally snarled at me, I can understand why.  Nobody should have to live in a home like that.  Nobody should have to live with so much anger and fighting.  I feel her pain and frustration and it makes me want to cry.  My loyalty cannot be to just one child when I have two.

I never imagined in a million years I would be fighting such a devastating illness and losing against it.  I never imagined that I could raise a child who presents as angry, selfish, and entitled.  I always imagined I would deal more with the problems I see with my daughter--occasional rudeness, disorganization, sorting out who she is.  You know, kid stuff.  Correcting her when she swears, insisting that she clean her messy room, dealing with piercings or hair dye.

But I'm not.  Instead, I'm dealing with depression and fear.  She feels separate.  She feels alone.  She feels that she's missing out on time with me and on having a normal life.  She's angry and hurt by his behavior, and has expressed a desire for her brother to leave.  She's never done that before.  Ever.

And so we persevere, but question if perseverence is even the right course to take, and what the other courses would be.  And of course, considering other options means considering the idea of the loss of this child from our family.

I have wondered if it would be in his best interest to be with a therapeutic foster family, a family who specializes in working with troubled children.  I just don't know.

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