Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Attachment . . .

We are having a rough go of it right now. Dustin typically has a difficult . . . DIFFICULT . . . D I F F I C U L T . . . time in October. This year will apparently be no exception. He has been pretty decent in recent weeks. He has not ran out of the house since just before school started, he has been sleeping well, and he has been quite helpful. The biggest issue we have been dealing with is a very smart mouth and a difficult attitude. I think that someone at school has been serving as a negative role model, the way he has been lipping off at home is new. His attitude is very "teenagery" yet he is still acting like a 6 year old much of the time.

The thing that I cannot stand the most is that when he hears the word no he melts into craziness. If he does not get his way, the crying, the whining and the jumping commences. It is almost always followed by some attachment junk that spews out of his mouth . . .

"You hate me."
"I don't want to live here any longer."
"I wish I would've never let you adopt me."
"I want you to call the police to take me away."
"Just kick me out."

It bothers me that after 9 years and countless stuff we have dealt with, he still thinks that leaving the family is an option. It breaks me heart that this is even a viable option in his mind. It hurts that he is that "broken" that he even thinks that it is possible.

I respond is mostly the same way . . .

"We love you."
"You have no choice, this is your family and your home."
"You needed a family and we love you."
"The police have no place to take you."
"Where will you live? This is your family. You are my child."

Agh! It makes me nutty. It kills me that we do this nearly every day. He truly thinks that you can simply throw someone out. He feels disposable. It also makes me crazy that he would rather live in a box on the street or ask to go to the psych hospital than live in my house. I know that neurotypical teens want to leave etc, but the difference for me is that he truly believes that it is possible for a mother or father to just be done and toss him out like trash.

Sometimes I believe it is for reassurance. Sometimes I think he just needs to hear that we will not do that to him. I think it is a dance that he feels is necessary to feel attached to us and know that we care. Other times, like tonight, he really thinks he would be better off without us.

If I wanted to be all selfish about it, I would be truly frustrated that he feels this way even after we have sacrificed so much of ourselves to give him the home he has. I would feel like it is a slap in the face that he had no one else who wanted him and we were willing to take on all these issues because we loved him and now he doesn't even want to be here. Of course, I know that he is not doing this to torture me, he is in more internal turmoil than I can ever imagine.

But sometimes, not feeling that way is hard.


GB's Mom said...

Hang on, sweetie! You are awesome!

Ashley's Mom said...

You could have been writing my story. The daughter that I adopted at age 9 and who will turn 21 this year still believes similar things. It's so difficult for me to understand why after this many years she still has not 'gotten' it.

I've used your same words with the same result. I just try to make myself feel better sometimes by telling myself that she does know on some level how much we all love her.

It is so hard, and the majority of people don't understand. I've had an easier time finding support and understanding for my daughter who has a rare disease and low incidence disability than I have for my daughter with attachment disorder.

It's a very lonely place to be...

Dia por Dia said...

I know how hard it is too. Our 12 year old defaults to this often too and it's pretty much word for word what yours says. We put up the words all over the bathroom he uses and he would peel the stickers off the walls. It took about 2 months before he started leaving them there. I think it has helped a little but I think you are right. THey need the constant reminder/reassurance even though it never feels like enough. But I keep hoping it will be sometime....

Jennifer said...

WOW you made me cry. This is the same way my 11 year old son is. He does the same exact thing. We will get through this. Hugs