Ah yes, another fun 24 hours in my house. Ever get the feeling that when one person really checks out of the family dynamic, it makes life difficult to sail on safe seas? A favorite phrase we’ve been hearing from our youngest daughter is the fact that we can’t make her do anything she doesn’t want to do.
While the will is strong, we can as parents limit her choice making abilities depending on her maturity and compliance level within the home. Ultimately I want her to spend healthy, productive time around the family. However, if she is having trouble getting her clothes together in the morning and off to school without lashing out verbally and physically at the family- and the same dynamic returns after school and before bed time- we need to put these measures in place. For her safety. For her security.
I love when I’m in the car with my youngest daughter and all I hear is how everything that’s going wrong in her life is my fault. The fact that she’s behind in her homework, the fact that she can’t keep her anger under control, the fact that she doesn’t have enough time to get ready for school in the morning- every aspect she wants to place the blame on others. So while the tirade went on as I drove her to her new after school program, I decided it’s not worth it to react. I’m working on keeping myself happy in all of this- letting her know she is still wanted and loved- but that I’m not willing to accept abusive behavior either verbally or physically.
The future doesn’t look promising based on these past 4 plus years with us. She doesn’t like hearing that, but I know she’s smart enough to take in information and use it. When she wants to buy into the process. She’s not buying into anything at this point. As long as her basic needs are met, I doubt she’ll want to change anything about her current situation. Every time she learns new skills at different treatment facilities, she knows what to say or do to reunite with the family. In crisis when asked to use these skills, she dismisses them as not working for her, and reverts back to the comfort of crying, yelling, screaming, stomping, kicking and punching.
Can you tell I’m at my wits end? How can you help someone that is unwilling to get out of their own way? There are numbers of people who’ve had horrible pasts that make a decision that acceptance and moving forward is better than to continually drown in victim-filled drama. As children get older, adults are less willing to give second chances especially if the child doesn’t feel sorrow or remorse for their negative action. Her destiny is in her hands, she can have a safe, successful life with a loving family, great relationships and the world at her fingertips.
Who knows what the next few days will bring. At this point if we had 24 hours of peace I think I would pass out from excitement. I have to remember that I am strong, that we can succeed together even if it takes her many more years to believe in us. As Billy Joel wrote about in one of his songs, it’s all just a matter of trust.