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Old 07-10-2012, 05:57 PM   #45
purseaddict
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Owasso, Oklahoma
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Re: Looking 4 Advice on Raising Young Kids from Abusive & Severely Neglectful Backgro

I haven't been around this site in a long time, but just read the thread. I hope things are continuing to improve for you and your family.

I know that it is so hard to think of kids as "your own" when you get them at an older age. My two DSS were 5 and 6 when their dad and I got married. I've always thought of them as mine, but when they were "bad" early on, it was hard to not lable that as being related to their mom who has had numerous problems in her life (bipolar, unstable, flighty, etc.) I had a hard time separating them from her. I had a hard time not blaming their behavior on her and not feeling almost "superior" to her when my kid didn't do those things. It was hard! I admit it. I handled it poorly. I didn't know any better, emotionally, and I didn't handle it as I should have. (Not that I said these things to the kids, or even my husband. Just in my head.)

As we've been married longer, it's gotten easier. However, my oldest DSS is a touch Aspergers and I swear has some sort of sensory issue. He is hard for me to relate to at times. I let him push my buttons, etc. He's clingy and needs constant approval. I think he has some attachment issues too. It's hard. He's mine, but I know that some of those things are not my fault. We do see a therapist and she suggested to me that since he is emotionally immature, that maybe I should take a photo of him from when he was young and place it in a prominent place to remind myself that just because he's 13 physically, that he is still a "little kid" emotionally and has to be handled a lot more like my nearly 3 year old than I would normally be accustomed to doing. That by remembering that he needs to be given more absolute instructions, not the more thoretical directions you give older kids and expect them to interpret.

Do see about getting yourself some respite care and a therapist. If there is any way you can do these two things, you will feel like a new momma. A mother's helper would be so beneficial to your own mental health.

Also, I would never leave them with the grandmother again unless you or your husband is there. She has been part and parcel to the abuse and I would not allow her any unsuperivised access to the kids.

Boys are a whole 'nother breed! Some of their behavior is just odd. I have three, believe me! I came from a family of three girls and all I ask my DH on a regular basis is "why????" If they can do it, they will! Even simple games of hide and seek can end up with a kids tied to a tree, because there was some rope nearby and it sounded like a good idea!

One last piece of advice on Ashlyn's food issues. Some kids that I have read about in my adoption research, that have had a lack of food in their past need a constant remider that it's available. Many of them hoard food, but Ashlyn's behavior may be similar. Maybe create a basket of snacks that she can have anytime she wants...crackers, fruit, fruit chews, etc. Anything that you are comfortable with her having and then remind her that she can eat them anytime, so that she will eventually feel comfortable having food on a regular basis and will eventually learn to ask for it. Not sure if it applies, but I figure, it can't hurt since she's already underweight.

to you mama!!! It will get better! It just takes a long time and it can be a hard journey.
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