Tuesday, August 09, 2011

2nd Attachment Therapy Appt

We had our 2nd attachment therapy appt for Josiah today. We had 2 big concerns that we wanted to discuss. One being the fact that Mother-in-Law is now living with us and I can see him manipulating her to get what he wants without her seeing it. That's obviously normal as we're still in the honeymoon period with her and it takes some practice to see what he does and how he goes about doing it. I wanted some advice on how to go about handling it as I didn't want us to have problems like we had with my parents. She suggested that we call the kids out on what they are doing as opposed to trying to correct my Mother-in-Law for giving in to them or whatnot. Just lots going on that we normally don't let them get away with, but they are trying to see what they can get away with with my Mother-in-Law. That and I feel like I can't correct them without her stepping in. I am capable of correcting my children. What she doesn't necessarily see is that whenever someone is here at the house, they up their antics and so there's a lot more stress on my part trying to keep control of things. The therapist understood that. She suggested that Andy talks to her about some things, but that hasn't happened as of yet. Nothing bad really, just we all need to be on the same page and the bottom line is that the kids need to understand that they need to listen to me. Emma is already pulling the "well, Grandma said" when she doesn't want to listen to me.

The other big area of concern that I have is school. Josiah will be going from half days to whole days. He loves to exaggerate, confuse things that have happened, or just lie outright. It's been happening a whole lot more this summer than what it ever has. THe therapist knows about that too so I wanted suggestions from her...do I come out and have a talk with his teacher and the school about his behaviors upfront, or do I just let it go and let them find out for themselves. This is a whole new school with all new teachers for him this year. She asked if his file was given to the school and I said yes. She said that they will see that he already has a discipline file, but she said it would be in our best interests to let them know up front that these are the things that he does and that he likes to make stuff up and that we won't believe the things that he tells us about them if they don't believe the things that he says about us. She said to ask them to inform us if he makes accusations and that we would do the same when he makes them about the teacher and the school. We also talked about the support system of if his behaviors continue to escalate at school or on the bus. I told her that his IQ is high and he is very smart and that he's surpassing Emily with the stuff that he knows. She said that is all good, but what she is fearful about is the stuff that he is really lagging in...conscience development, morals, poor sense of hurting others and remorse...that type of thing. His behavior will get in the way of his learning...I told her that his occupational therapist has said that from the beginning. He is very smart, but the behavior gets in the way and prohibits him.

She brought him in and asked him how things were going and if he was being nice or mean to us girls in the house. He said that he was being mean. She had a talk with him about why he is doing that. They talked about his birthmom and how she wasn't safe and how he was then brought to live with us and how he is projecting all of his feelings of mistrust about his birthmom onto me. He got really sad during that portion, although he wouldn't say much. Then, she asked him about riding the bus and how he felt about that and if he was scared. He said no. She then said "you're not scared about riding the bus with all the kids who are bigger than you." He said no. She moved suddenly (he was sitting on her lap) and he jumped. She asked him if he knew that she was going to do that. He said no and that it scared him. He was then able to say that he was a little bit scared about riding the bus. SHe feels that he is masking a lot of his feelings and it's just coming out in all this anger and agression and having to constantly pick on the girls. The other thing that I wanted advice on was his constant need to talk and make noises. It gets to the point sometimes that I can't even hear the girls who are right in front of me asking for something because of how loud he is and sometimes I honestly can't even complete a thought. She told me to start giving him some nonverbal cues so that I didn't have to talk during that time so I wasn't yelling over the top of him. She said to hold up my hand and say a simple stop. If that didn't work to motion to zip your lips. If he continued after that, to put him in time out or send him to his room as he's being defiant at that point. I told her that I know he uses that as a controlling mechanism. You can't be talking to anyone, he's going to interrupt...he's gotta get in there at some point. She said that she's noticed that even when he's supposed to be keeping himself occupied on the other side of the door...he's constantly coming to knock on the door and he does it way more often than what a child would need something. Anyway, that gave me some stuff to use and try and we'll go back again next time. I think I'm going to have her start seeing the girls next time too. She gave us some homework as she said that he really needs to understand the concept of dialogue and that it's not all about monologue.

One thing that I did find interesting too is that when she lifted him up on her lap, she asked me if he was always so stiff. I said yes. She asked me again if I knew much about prenatal exposure and I said that she denied anything. She said with how stiff he is that makes her think that she used some coke and meth as that's typical with those kids. I guess it can't be ruled out as we really don't know.

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