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#1 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 12:26 PM

my youngest daughter has stopped doing all school work. Until she is caught up, and stops playing her games on her work (intentionally writing out all wrong answers - which it is absolutely intentional so please don't question) dh and I have decided NO privileges, NO play dates, NO homeschool group. I will be cancelling play dates we have scheduled for her. I will also be telling them why and making my dd apologize for not being able to play because she didn't do her work. I always make sure SHE owns her issues now and apologizes, rather than me telling everyone we need to back out. This was recommended to me by a therapist to make her accountable for her actions. What makes things difficult is that we're not going to punish older dd by not going to group, so I will have younger in tow, and she won't be allowed to be in the group or play with the kids. Oh yay, I get to have her tell all her friends AGAIN that she can't play because she's not doing her school work, and I get to look like the BAD, MEAN mommy, which is part of her goal for doing this. Of course she's ALWAYS the perfect little angel around others.

Any tips/advice for dealing with outside questions?

#2 Cheryl in NM

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 12:48 PM

Could you have someone else take your older child to the playgroup and stay home with the other?

Could you drop off your older child and go home?

Could you take school work to the play group? While this is a punishment for the younger, it would bring home the fact that you are not caving, but keep her engaged and active in something besides what she's missing.

BTW, what is RAD?

#3 kwg

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 12:49 PM

Bring the work and have hr finish it there? Or would that make everything worse?

#4 Danestress

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:04 PM

Just because she is the one who has to explain it doesn't mean you can't give everyone "heads up" about what is happening and why. I think I would send an email to the group and just explain what here therapist has recommended and what it's going to be like during the group, and I would ask them to be friendly and normal but not to ask questions about it in front of your daughter. I would tell them (if it's true) that your unwillingness to look like a "bad" or "mean" Mom has resulted in sometimes bending consequences and that you recognize the need to be firm even though you fear the judgment of others. That will let them know exactly how they can support you as a mother.

#5 2cents

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:14 PM

A very good friend had an RAD child she adopted from another country. She disrupted the adoption. :( It was a very sad situation. I saw what she went through so I have an idea of what you're going through. I think Cheryl in NM has a good idea. I think that you should find a way to keep her away from the coop entirely. Part of what makes a RAD tick is the availability of people to manipulate. No matter what you say or how you say it, there will be people at the coop who thrive on 'drama' and you will be the bad, mean mommy who is being unfair. The fact that your daughter knows to act angelic at the coop is going to be a problem. Unless people know RAD, they just cannot wrap their heads around the manipulative skills of these children. My advise...same as Cheryl...find a way to keep her isolated (at home and not at the coop) and as kwg suggested, make her do her homework. Not being allowed to go to coop doesn't mean she gets a free day. By keeping her away from coop you don't give her the opportunity to see you having to explain things to anyone. When she sees you explaining your parenting decisions to others it only reinforces to her that she has the power to make you uncomfortable. :grouphug:

#6 Quickbeam

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:17 PM

BTW, what is RAD?


reactive attachment disorder

#7 Cheryl in NM

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:21 PM

reactive attachment disorder


Thank you. This sounds like my step-daughter, now an adult. We had some of the same situations as described in op.

#8 Cera

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:24 PM

I have had my 5 year old sit with me at playdates while her sister played because of poor behavior. I don't discuss it with others, it isn't their business. If anybody asks why she isn't allowed to participate in the playdate I tell them it is between her and I and the punishment isn't negotiable.

If you see the same group often you could try sending out an email explaining that she has been diagnosed with RAD and include pertinent information and links.

#9 Lolly

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:28 PM

my youngest daughter has stopped doing all school work. Until she is caught up, and stops playing her games on her work (intentionally writing out all wrong answers - which it is absolutely intentional so please don't question) dh and I have decided NO privileges, NO play dates, NO homeschool group. I will be cancelling play dates we have scheduled for her. I will also be telling them why and making my dd apologize for not being able to play because she didn't do her work. I always make sure SHE owns her issues now and apologizes, rather than me telling everyone we need to back out. This was recommended to me by a therapist to make her accountable for her actions. What makes things difficult is that we're not going to punish older dd by not going to group, so I will have younger in tow, and she won't be allowed to be in the group or play with the kids. Oh yay, I get to have her tell all her friends AGAIN that she can't play because she's not doing her school work, and I get to look like the BAD, MEAN mommy, which is part of her goal for doing this. Of course she's ALWAYS the perfect little angel around others.

Any tips/advice for dealing with outside questions?


I don't think you need to do any explaining. CHild is not getting their work done, child does not participate in fun activities. I would NOT think you were a bad, mean mommy. I would think you were a good caring mommy. Would people really think it was on you because she didn't do her work?

#10 Jean in Newcastle

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:32 PM

I think I would just have her say that she is grounded right now because she chose not to do her work.

If someone asks you why or makes a "poor girl" comment, I would just simply say that you are taking the advice of her therapist.

My friend who has the two boys with RAD has found that while some very close friends (like me) have taken the time to really listen and even do some reading about RAD, most don't want to really understand. And in order to protect her kid's privacy, she doesn't explain too much to others. If questioned, she will simply say that she is following the advice of the therapist or psychiatrist. I have to say that even then she's had to get some tough skin because some people want to think the worst no matter what.

#11 JustGin

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:46 PM

First of all (((((hugs))))). My heart goes out to you. I have a kiddo who has mild fetal alcohol effect coupled with attachment issues, so I know the struggle.
My best advice for is for you. Make sure you have at least one person who knows, I mean really knows, the issues, the struggles, everything, and can be an unconditional support to you. Don't be shy or hesitate to lean on this person, to vent or to be real. I don't advise this to be your husband. Yes, you lean on each other, but you need someone else on the other end of the phone or across the table when these kind of days happen, who is not "in" it. If that makes sense. Try very hard not to worry about whether or not other people "get" it, or judge your parenting. You have to parent this child the best YOU can, and that will not be according to anyone's standard playbook.
Blessings
JG

#12 Laurie4b

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 01:49 PM

I think I would find some written resources on RAD online and write an email to the parents involved ahead of time. Describe your situation to them and link some helpful articles. That way you communicate with them and it's not in front of your dd. You can enlist their help (if you can find an article that describes the "angel" with others "little devil at home" syndrome) if they "get" that their being manipulated will be against her best interest. (A lot of times the parents of RAD kids DO look ridiculously strict to others. I know with our foster son, I soon learned that if he didn't get consequences if he was 1 minute late (which I find ridiculous) that he would then assume he could come home 45 minutes late the next time. So I had to be as black and white as he was to "communicate" to him. )

You might try composing the letter and then posting it here for input before sending it.

It's rough; I know.

#13 Cafelattee

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 02:00 PM

I have worked with RAD kids in a home school/coop setting and a Sunday school setting. I was totally aware of their condition. Mom confided in me. The other parents were not. I know this is a delicate situation for you and your child. The affects of mom keeping privacy turned into a really bad situation. The parents being accused of abuse and etc.

People really don't understand these children. They do the whole little angel think in public but at home one of her kids attempted to burn down the house. He was riding with one of the other moms(not aware of his condition) and open the door of van while going down the road.

If you don't want to share with the others. It would probably be best to keep the child home until punishment is over.

#14 lionfamily1999

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 02:07 PM

A very good friend had an RAD child she adopted from another country. She disrupted the adoption. :( It was a very sad situation. I saw what she went through so I have an idea of what you're going through. I think Cheryl in NM has a good idea. I think that you should find a way to keep her away from the coop entirely. Part of what makes a RAD tick is the availability of people to manipulate. No matter what you say or how you say it, there will be people at the coop who thrive on 'drama' and you will be the bad, mean mommy who is being unfair. The fact that your daughter knows to act angelic at the coop is going to be a problem. Unless people know RAD, they just cannot wrap their heads around the manipulative skills of these children. My advise...same as Cheryl...find a way to keep her isolated (at home and not at the coop) and as kwg suggested, make her do her homework. Not being allowed to go to coop doesn't mean she gets a free day. By keeping her away from coop you don't give her the opportunity to see you having to explain things to anyone. When she sees you explaining your parenting decisions to others it only reinforces to her that she has the power to make you uncomfortable. :grouphug:


I have worked with RAD kids in a home school/coop setting and a Sunday school setting. I was totally aware of their condition. Mom confided in me. The other parents were not. I know this is a delicate situation for you and your child. The affects of mom keeping privacy turned into a really bad situation. The parents being accused of abuse and etc.

People really don't understand these children. They do the whole little angel think in public but at home one of her kids attempted to burn down the house. He was riding with one of the other moms(not aware of his condition) and open the door of van while going down the road.

If you don't want to share with the others. It would probably be best to keep the child home until punishment is over.



O/T
These posts caught my eye and I was wondering if this need to keep the child from manipulating others would explain why a neighbor might say the infamous family that adopted the little boy was "hiding" him? I know very little about this condition, but now wonder if the parents weren't warned that the child could be manipulative and should be kept from situations where they could manipulate other adults around them.




:grouphug: Op, I just want to say that I think it's wonderful that you're taking such care. I hope it all works out for you and yours.

#15 Dobela

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 02:11 PM

You don't have to explain anything. She was told to do her school work, she chose not to. Yes, the underlying issue is RAD, but she is reponsible ultimately. The only one that may call you the big mean mommy is your dd. If the other kids do it, then they need to be disciplined by their parent. If other parents say anything, just politely remind them tht this is your child, and your decision. You are not questioning their parenting decisions, and they should not question yours.

If need be, you may want to write a contract with your dd in the future complete with boxes to check showing what she has done or not done. Then you have more than your word against heres - you have visual proof.

#16 Sue in TX

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 02:19 PM

Having a child with RAD, I have found that most people don't understand RAD unless they have first-hand experience. Partly, they just can't relate to the manipulation and rage.

I pray that you have someone who you can confide in and trust to understand your situation. Being the mom of a RAD child is a lonely, frustrating, and depressing but I have found that explaining much of my son's situation is not very productive. I wouldn't provide much info unless you really have to. Hopefully, your dd will understand your boundaries and comply with your parenting- if not, it will still be a source of comfort and security to your dd if you stand your ground. Of course, you already know this.... (((Hugs))) to you and your precious dd.

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#17 Tap

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 02:29 PM

If Sandy Loo asks if dd is coming to class, I would say "dd chose to not come to class today by failing to honor family rules. Hopefully she will be there next week".

It is simple, to the point and most people won't pry (too much). It doesn't give dd the pleasure of hearing you talk about her. It doesn't discuss the details, so people may be less likely to add in their own comments. It gives a closure to the conversation. It puts all of it on her.

#18 fairfarmhand

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 04:29 PM

If I saw you there, I would think you were doing just fine. There are parents who understand setting limits and following through, and I have children who behave in public but can sometimes make me crazy at home.

I get it.

Hopefully there are a few mom's like that there too.

I would not elaborate to people as to the details. If they are nosy and ask, use Dear Abbys standard response to people who ask nosy questions, "I'll forgive you for asking, if you'll forgive me for not answering."

#19 Impish

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 04:43 PM

Part of the frustration must be feeling the need to educate others about RAD, and have them turn the knowledge aside, preferring their ignorance and prejudice to the truth and reality of the matter.

Sorry, Hon. :grouphug::grouphug:

You can't make those who prefer ignorance to learn or understand. I'd go with telling those who ask that the child chose not to do her work this week...and if they push, I'd firmly tell them that my parenting choices weren't open for discussion or debate. :D


#20 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 06:49 PM

Could you have someone else take your older child to the playgroup and stay home with the other?

Could you drop off your older child and go home?

Could you take school work to the play group? While this is a punishment for the younger, it would bring home the fact that you are not caving, but keep her engaged and active in something besides what she's missing.

BTW, what is RAD?


My daughter has inhibited RAD - Reactive Attachment Disorder. I have been bringing her this year WITH her school work on the days she hasn't done her work. For what ever reason, she's spiraled recently and stopped doing ALL work.

Today I even tried to entice her, and please don't judge me for this. When you're the parent of a RAD kid, sometimes you reach a place of desperation. I offered her hotdogs, chips and coke for doing her work (we don't eat that junk, but of course ALL kids would LOVE to, and I bought it today) or eat plain unsweetened peanut butter on Ezekiel break :scared: YET AGAIN. She chose to just erase her answers and screw them up further. Now they're not even words.

I can have people take older dd, but I will have to work at not being resentful. That's where all MY friends are, and I truly look forward to this group.

I'm SO tired.

#21 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 06:52 PM

Bring the work and have hr finish it there? Or would that make everything worse?


BTW, when I do this, she just sits there crying like she doesn't know the work (she absolutely does and will finish it On Her Own with NO help from me with nobody else there) OR she will just scribble on the page.
:glare:

Out of desperation, I just bought her a laptop and am hoping it will come soon. I'm signing her up for Time4Learning and will use my purchased curriculum as a supplement. What I've learned, though, is that everything that works for now, will NOT work later.

Oh, I just want to cry and crawl under a rock. I will have to pay for this for the rest of my life, because I wanted to save the life of a child. I cried for her EVERY DAY and prayed for her EVERY DAY and can tell you all that without a doubt, I have given her more than anyone else in my life. I'm drying up.

#22 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 06:54 PM

Just because she is the one who has to explain it doesn't mean you can't give everyone "heads up" about what is happening and why. I think I would send an email to the group and just explain what here therapist has recommended and what it's going to be like during the group, and I would ask them to be friendly and normal but not to ask questions about it in front of your daughter. I would tell them (if it's true) that your unwillingness to look like a "bad" or "mean" Mom has resulted in sometimes bending consequences and that you recognize the need to be firm even though you fear the judgment of others. That will let them know exactly how they can support you as a mother.


Now see, I'm just too burnt out to think of something so awesome and sensible as this. Thanks SO much.

And honestly, sometimes I don't post here about her because I'm afraid of the backlash from someone who doesn't understand RAD.

Trust me, all of you who don't understand RAD would be absolutely taken in by her angelic charm.

#23 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:02 PM

A very good friend had an RAD child she adopted from another country. She disrupted the adoption. :( It was a very sad situation. I saw what she went through so I have an idea of what you're going through. I think Cheryl in NM has a good idea. I think that you should find a way to keep her away from the coop entirely. Part of what makes a RAD tick is the availability of people to manipulate. No matter what you say or how you say it, there will be people at the coop who thrive on 'drama' and you will be the bad, mean mommy who is being unfair. The fact that your daughter knows to act angelic at the coop is going to be a problem. Unless people know RAD, they just cannot wrap their heads around the manipulative skills of these children. My advise...same as Cheryl...find a way to keep her isolated (at home and not at the coop) and as kwg suggested, make her do her homework. Not being allowed to go to coop doesn't mean she gets a free day. By keeping her away from coop you don't give her the opportunity to see you having to explain things to anyone. When she sees you explaining your parenting decisions to others it only reinforces to her that she has the power to make you uncomfortable. :grouphug:


You're SO wise. And disruption isn't out of the question at this point because I do believe she's a dangerous person.

I just spoke to dh about your response. He's going to try to work from home a couple of times per month and will try to bring her in to work one time, so hopefully I'll get to go with dd. But you're right. The more I keep her away, the better.

Also, one of my good friend's mother is her very close friend, and unfortunately I'm going to have to keep her away from her for now, too, because having friends and fun outside the home, at this point, has to be earned. She was getting better recently, but her behaviors have escalated to a new high.

May I have your permission to share what you wrote without your name or anything? Just cut and paste your response? I may not use it, but then again, I may when I email some of my friends in the group.

Thanks so much for your wise words. I'm honestly too tired to think clearly.

#24 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:07 PM

I don't think you need to do any explaining. CHild is not getting their work done, child does not participate in fun activities. I would NOT think you were a bad, mean mommy. I would think you were a good caring mommy. Would people really think it was on you because she didn't do her work?


Yes. They do. At our Valentine's party I made her stay with me as I talked to the mothers because she wasn't allowed to partake. The woman who runs the group walked by and said, "You're the mother!" and it tore me apart. I cried all night. Dd didn't see it because she was sent to bed early that night. But the rest of my family saw it and witnessed my torment. It's so hard on EVERYONE.

People don't have to ask anymore, they know why she's not partaking. They know she isn't doing their work. Some of them explain to me that she likely KNOWS the work, why show it? :001_huh: How irresponsible is that?

I don't say things many times, but kids are CONSTANTLY asking HER AND ME why she can't play. I'm so tired of it.

#25 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:10 PM

I think I would just have her say that she is grounded right now because she chose not to do her work.

If someone asks you why or makes a "poor girl" comment, I would just simply say that you are taking the advice of her therapist.

My friend who has the two boys with RAD has found that while some very close friends (like me) have taken the time to really listen and even do some reading about RAD, most don't want to really understand. And in order to protect her kid's privacy, she doesn't explain too much to others. If questioned, she will simply say that she is following the advice of the therapist or psychiatrist. I have to say that even then she's had to get some tough skin because some people want to think the worst no matter what.


You're right. Some DO want to think the worst no matter what, because too many parents don't truly parent their kids and hold them accountable.

She's no longer in therapy (it was actually me getting the parent coaching for her) and when I tried to find someone local this past fall, they actually told me (more than one therapist) that it sounds like I'm doing everything they would, and that it sounded like I truly didn't need them, that I was doing fine on my own.
:banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead:

#26 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:14 PM

First of all (((((hugs))))). My heart goes out to you. I have a kiddo who has mild fetal alcohol effect coupled with attachment issues, so I know the struggle.
My best advice for is for you. Make sure you have at least one person who knows, I mean really knows, the issues, the struggles, everything, and can be an unconditional support to you. Don't be shy or hesitate to lean on this person, to vent or to be real. I don't advise this to be your husband. Yes, you lean on each other, but you need someone else on the other end of the phone or across the table when these kind of days happen, who is not "in" it. If that makes sense. Try very hard not to worry about whether or not other people "get" it, or judge your parenting. You have to parent this child the best YOU can, and that will not be according to anyone's standard playbook.
Blessings
JG


I am SO fortunate to have a few very close friends who TRULY get it, and who are absolutely shocked to hear what I have to deal with on a regular basis. I have PTSD and it's actually a gift now, because I absolutely numb myself to all the trauma she causes on a regular basis. You'd be amazed at the horrific things she does that cause me to give her this look :001_huh: and move on with no emotion.

I used to not care what others think, but it's particularly hard with this group. I'm hoping it works out next year where she just simply won't be involved. Dh sounds like he can make this happen. But I can NOT risk his job for her.

#27 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:17 PM

I think I would find some written resources on RAD online and write an email to the parents involved ahead of time. Describe your situation to them and link some helpful articles. That way you communicate with them and it's not in front of your dd. You can enlist their help (if you can find an article that describes the "angel" with others "little devil at home" syndrome) if they "get" that their being manipulated will be against her best interest. (A lot of times the parents of RAD kids DO look ridiculously strict to others. I know with our foster son, I soon learned that if he didn't get consequences if he was 1 minute late (which I find ridiculous) that he would then assume he could come home 45 minutes late the next time. So I had to be as black and white as he was to "communicate" to him. )

You might try composing the letter and then posting it here for input before sending it.

It's rough; I know.


I tried to find a short and sweet description that described my dd perfectly. T hey're out there, but I was operating on fumes today and just couldn't find one yet, so I posted here in desperation and left to go on a field trip and run errands. My sons are on school vacation so I didn't have to bring her. It was a LOVELY afternoon, rain and all, and I cried as we hit the road to get home, knowing I'd have to face her again. I know that sounds awful, but I'm just totally beaten down, worn out, and beyond exhausted right now.

I absoltely LOVE the idea of posting a letter here first!!!!! THANK YOU!!!

#28 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:20 PM

I have worked with RAD kids in a home school/coop setting and a Sunday school setting. I was totally aware of their condition. Mom confided in me. The other parents were not. I know this is a delicate situation for you and your child. The affects of mom keeping privacy turned into a really bad situation. The parents being accused of abuse and etc.

People really don't understand these children. They do the whole little angel think in public but at home one of her kids attempted to burn down the house. He was riding with one of the other moms(not aware of his condition) and open the door of van while going down the road.

If you don't want to share with the others. It would probably be best to keep the child home until punishment is over.


my daughter has publicly accused everyone in our family, but my other dd, of abusing her. If it weren't for this, I'd have her in public school AND the afterschool problem. But because of her lies of MANY things, the danger of it to my other kids, and the fact that she'd spiral out of control in school, it will never be an option.

I'm not sure I understand why mom keeping private turned out to be a bad situation. I'm really burnt out. Could you explain, please, as I seriously consider/weigh my options?

#29 Jean in Newcastle

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:21 PM

Denise - I'm not suggesting that you do this, but I want to share what is now working for my friend with the two boys with RAD. She has gone back to work full-time and her dh is now taking care of the boys. I don't know if it is a boy thing but they will do things for him that they just refuse to do for her. They were so close to disrupting one of the adoptions but by doing this, they are able to keep the family intact. A huge difference between their family and yours is that they put their boys into public school in hopes that their angelic sides would come out for the teachers at least. That worked for one of the boys who is doing great but not the other but since it wasn't any worse than at home, they are leaving it be.

#30 jujsky

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:21 PM

No tips or advice. I would just tell it like it is. You're doing everything in your power to help your little girl, and setting these limits is part of it. I do it with my son (not RAD, but he has FAE and sensory issues). For 2 weeks he didn't go to gymnastics & we had to cancel a playdate he had been looking forward to because he refused to do his work. RAD is not your fault, but a circumstance you and your family are forced to deal with. I think most people will understand the basics of the condition if you explain it to them.

It sounds to me like you're doing a great job under the circumstances, Denise :grouphug: Hang in there!

#31 MaMa2005

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:22 PM

:grouphug: :grouphug: I am supporting a friend who is in the middle of disrupting her adoption of her son who has RAD. I get it because I have been the shoulder that has been cried upon (albeit long distance) when my friend has no more to give.

Please take care of YOURSELF. That is my biggest worry with my friend as I am seeing her get more and more desperate to find a new home for her son.

Once again, many :grouphug:.

#32 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:25 PM

O/T
These posts caught my eye and I was wondering if this need to keep the child from manipulating others would explain why a neighbor might say the infamous family that adopted the little boy was "hiding" him? I know very little about this condition, but now wonder if the parents weren't warned that the child could be manipulative and should be kept from situations where they could manipulate other adults around them.




:grouphug: Op, I just want to say that I think it's wonderful that you're taking such care. I hope it all works out for you and yours.


well that last part is making me cry my eyes out. I don't feel like I'm taking care of her. I feel like I've made her hate me (RAD kids ALWAYS target the mom) but I tell her all the time, I'm not being a mean mommy, but I'm being a mommy who won't allow her to fail because I care too much. When she sees kids behaving badly, she'll say, "Their mother isn't training them to do the right thing... or, They must have a bad mom."

Yes, that could easily be why someone may think they hide an adopted kid. Some of these kids are so dangerous to the family that they are kept from public to protect the rest of the family. This is our situation. This is why NO MATTER WHAT, I will be in my dd's class in ANY co-op setting, and I will NOT allow her to be outside my eye sight. I feel it's my responsibility to do this to protect my other children. I feel responsible for doing this for my family. I prayed and cried for four years for this adoption for four years, and I sometimes hate myself for doing this to my family, and I *ALWAYS* take 100% responsibility. Noboby knows that during the 2. 5year adoption process, I was already praying for our SECOND adoption. NO WAY.

#33 Quickbeam

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:27 PM

:grouphug: My sister teaches at-risk children. Some of them have RAD. I spend a decent enough amount of time volunteering at her school to have a mild guess at what you experience. One of the boys has actually made progress this year. I never would have guessed he would, but he is. Just offering that b/c I have sometimes wondered what could be as hopeless as RAD seems.

I think Just Gin offered great advice.

#34 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:27 PM

You don't have to explain anything. She was told to do her school work, she chose not to. Yes, the underlying issue is RAD, but she is reponsible ultimately. The only one that may call you the big mean mommy is your dd. If the other kids do it, then they need to be disciplined by their parent. If other parents say anything, just politely remind them tht this is your child, and your decision. You are not questioning their parenting decisions, and they should not question yours.

If need be, you may want to write a contract with your dd in the future complete with boxes to check showing what she has done or not done. Then you have more than your word against heres - you have visual proof.


you're right. When you get so beaten down, EVEN by a child, you just don't fight anymore. Sometimes anyway. When dh heard of some of the comments in our group (which again IS a blessing for the most part) he got SO angry and said, "You tell them that YOU'RE THE PARENT. END OF SUBJECT."

I do have days where I do....

#35 Cheryl in NM

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:28 PM

My daughter has inhibited RAD - Reactive Attachment Disorder. I have been bringing her this year WITH her school work on the days she hasn't done her work. For what ever reason, she's spiraled recently and stopped doing ALL work.

Today I even tried to entice her, and please don't judge me for this. When you're the parent of a RAD kid, sometimes you reach a place of desperation. I offered her hotdogs, chips and coke for doing her work (we don't eat that junk, but of course ALL kids would LOVE to, and I bought it today) or eat plain unsweetened peanut butter on Ezekiel break :scared: YET AGAIN. She chose to just erase her answers and screw them up further. Now they're not even words.

I can have people take older dd, but I will have to work at not being resentful. That's where all MY friends are, and I truly look forward to this group.

I'm SO tired.


I know I'm not in your shoes and this may not inspire you the way it inspired me. I was having a rough time, feeling like my needs were never being met, I never got time alone, etc. A friend told me what her grandmother shared with her. "I only have my children for about 18 years. After that is "me" time." Now when I get exasperated I try to remember that actively raising kids is truly a temporary part of life and one that goes by too quickly. I have 2 grown and 1 that's 13 and swear they grew up in just a few months! lol! Anyway, I don't know if this will help you to not be resentful for missing your time with your friends. I, too, have had to miss playdates and time with my friends. It was hard to not be resentful!

:grouphug::grouphug:

ETA: Maybe you should find someone to take care of your daughters so you can go get a massage or something. Just some you time, even if it's only an hour. You need to rejuvenate.

#36 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:29 PM

[quote name='Sue in TX']Having a child with RAD, I have found that most people don't understand RAD unless they have first-hand experience. Partly, they just can't relate to the manipulation and rage.

I pray that you have someone who you can confide in and trust to understand your situation. Being the mom of a RAD child is a lonely, frustrating, and depressing but I have found that explaining much of my son's situation is not very productive. I wouldn't provide much info unless you really have to. Hopefully, your dd will understand your boundaries and comply with your parenting- if not, it will still be a source of comfort and security to your dd if you stand your ground. Of course, you already know this.... (((Hugs))) to you and your precious dd.

you're right. I do know this. But I completely forgot until you mentioned it. THANKS!!!

#37 Ottakee

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:29 PM

I "get" RAD. We have not had it here to an extreme measure but one of my kids has the RAD diagnosis and we have fostered several kids with it, done respite for families that had RAD kids, etc.

I would say, if possible, stay home and let the other kids go. Less explaining and less people for her to manipulate.

I might be overstepping my bounds here as well, but have you had a psychiatrist evaluate her for other mental illnesses? I am part of a RAD support group and 80% of the kids with RAD had another mental illness going on as well. Bipolar was the biggest one but there were others as well. Once those mental illnesses were treated properly (mostly through medication) the RAD was much easier to address.

Just think of it like this--------kids have RAD due to poor attachment bonding and are most often adopted kids. Those people who tend to have their children taken away and placed for adoption are very often those with mental health issues that are self medicating with drugs and/or alcohol. Mental illness has a very strong gentic link so these kids are at much higher risk. Then add in any prenatal drug/alcohol exposure and it is no wonder these kids really struggle.

I know that here, medication for the bipolar was about 90% of our answer. Once that was in place and she was stable on the meds, we could address the 10% through therapy/parenting, etc.

Do you have a good attachment therapist? Do you have a good support network and RAD group? Those things were so helpful here.

#38 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:32 PM

If Sandy Loo asks if dd is coming to class, I would say "dd chose to not come to class today by failing to honor family rules. Hopefully she will be there next week".

It is simple, to the point and most people won't pry (too much). It doesn't give dd the pleasure of hearing you talk about her. It doesn't discuss the details, so people may be less likely to add in their own comments. It gives a closure to the conversation. It puts all of it on her.


Honestly, I am so tired that I kept thinking....... "Who is Sandy Loo? Do I know her?" Thanks for the laugh. :D

And you're right. It's perfect. How to say it in front of her, if I have to bring her? Or again, just have her say, "I chose not to do my work so I can't be a part of Sandy Loo's class?" :D

#39 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:33 PM

If they are nosy and ask, use Dear Abbys standard response to people who ask nosy questions, "I'll forgive you for asking, if you'll forgive me for not answering."


OMG, I *SO* LOVE THIS!!!!! oh PLEASE, people, pray that I have the backbone to use it??!!!
:smilielol5::smilielol5::thumbup::thumbup:

#40 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:35 PM

Part of the frustration must be feeling the need to educate others about RAD, and have them turn the knowledge aside, preferring their ignorance and prejudice to the truth and reality of the matter.

Sorry, Hon. :grouphug::grouphug:

You can't make those who prefer ignorance to learn or understand. I'd go with telling those who ask that the child chose not to do her work this week...and if they push, I'd firmly tell them that my parenting choices weren't open for discussion or debate. :D


You're right. BEFORE all the crap of the past few years entered the picture, I truly learned NOT TO CARE. My confidence has been chipped away and I don't have that strength at the moment. It comes and goes in waves.

BUT, the bolded part is PERFECT, followed by Dear Abby's comment. LOVE IT.

#41 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:38 PM

Denise - I'm not suggesting that you do this, but I want to share what is now working for my friend with the two boys with RAD. She has gone back to work full-time and her dh is now taking care of the boys. I don't know if it is a boy thing but they will do things for him that they just refuse to do for her. They were so close to disrupting one of the adoptions but by doing this, they are able to keep the family intact. A huge difference between their family and yours is that they put their boys into public school in hopes that their angelic sides would come out for the teachers at least. That worked for one of the boys who is doing great but not the other but since it wasn't any worse than at home, they are leaving it be.


I tried school once, for six weeks. It was a disaster.

She won't do the work for dh either, and she even won't do it for dd. She's just being FIRM right now and truly wants to cause destruction. I won't show stress cracks in front of her, but I fall apart when she's not around. Dh and I are tired.

#42 myfunnybunch

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:41 PM

I would simply explain that her therapist, who has experience dealing with children with your dd's issues, recommends this approach. Period.

You know what you have given and are giving this child. The people close to you know. No one else really matters in the long run.

And if it's important to you to go, then go, dd in tow. You need to keep your own routines and schedules intact, particularly the ones that refresh you. No need to let her choices cause you to give up something you need.

:grouphug:

Cat

#43 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:42 PM

No tips or advice. I would just tell it like it is. You're doing everything in your power to help your little girl, and setting these limits is part of it. I do it with my son (not RAD, but he has FAE and sensory issues). For 2 weeks he didn't go to gymnastics & we had to cancel a playdate he had been looking forward to because he refused to do his work. RAD is not your fault, but a circumstance you and your family are forced to deal with. I think most people will understand the basics of the condition if you explain it to them.

It sounds to me like you're doing a great job under the circumstances, Denise :grouphug: Hang in there!


we showed up for our playdate last week and she had two papers for DAYS that she completed, in THEIR house after apologizing to her friend for not being able to play right away, she completed them in less than 5 minutes. And the work was perfect.

The following day, she had to call the parent of a child to apologize for not being able to go to the party for being so naughty.

Her behaviors have escalated since, and I'm certain these people don't GET it. Still mulling over the decision to explain, to not explain,e tc.

#44 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:45 PM

:grouphug: :grouphug: I am supporting a friend who is in the middle of disrupting her adoption of her son who has RAD. I get it because I have been the shoulder that has been cried upon (albeit long distance) when my friend has no more to give.

Please take care of YOURSELF. That is my biggest worry with my friend as I am seeing her get more and more desperate to find a new home for her son.

Once again, many :grouphug:.


I have gone on a 5 day, one week, and 10 day vacation ALONE. I spent my time with two friends out of state. The time I went away for 10 days, each time my family would call I would cry and immediately ask, "Is she in the room? I can't talk to you if she's in the room. I can't talk to her." It broke my dh's heart, and it broke the heart of my friend.

None of my friends who I share 100% with are fooled by her. And they're all 100% supportive of disruption, should we choose to, but I do let fears, and worries, both for my family AND for her, keep us keep on keeping on. But at what cost?

Thank you for being there for your friend. I can't even put words on what it means to me to have other's there for me, and even those like you who are supportive of us who are treading these dark waters.

#45 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:47 PM

:grouphug: My sister teaches at-risk children. Some of them have RAD. I spend a decent enough amount of time volunteering at her school to have a mild guess at what you experience. One of the boys has actually made progress this year. I never would have guessed he would, but he is. Just offering that b/c I have sometimes wondered what could be as hopeless as RAD seems.

I think Just Gin offered great advice.


the mother is lucky that your sister's school is on her side. I tried to educate our school. I got sick of kicking a dead horse. They were mesmerized by her sweetness and didn't believe me when I shared our home life.

Again, I have to protect my bio kids.

#46 happyhomemaker25

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:49 PM

I could have written the OP just two years ago. I had to pull my oldest out of her dance classes and the kids worship team for the second year in a row and had to pull her from our homeschool co-op.
She still went with me to co-op and sat in the nusery with a book on CD. I explained to her teacher and the director of the co-op what was going on and left it at that.
It was a rough year. I think some of it had to do with approaching puberty. In talking to some other RAD moms they all noticed that things became harder for their girls around 10-11 years old.
Fortunatly this past year has smoothed everything out. She has become so responsible with her school work that she is working almost independently. While we have had some behavior issues it's nothing out of the ordinary for a 13yo girl.
She was never officially diagnosed with RAD. I found out a year after we adopted her when I was reading up on behavior issues trying to figure out what to do with this child.
I think she either had a very mild version or God has worked an incredible miracle. She has turned into a different child lately.
I am amazed at how much we did instinctively with her that others say was suggested by thier therapists.
I tell everyone about RAD. My friends were very understanding after I explained the issue. When I told my mom she began to notice things as well. It was very helpful to have so much support from people who were trying to understand the problem.

#47 Quickbeam

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:52 PM

the mother is lucky that your sister's school is on her side.


The mother is mentally ill and has very limited skills. She loves that little boy, though they have not always been together. My sister's school is a fairly new program; it's a public school and a day treatment facility rolled into one building. I wish every town had a school like this. There are only 8 children in a class. My sister gets burnt out sometimes, so I can only imagine how you must feel, mama.

You are in our family prayers tonight.

ETA: Yes, I probably know too much about them. But I spend time there and I go to the family nights; I can't help getting to know them.

Edited by Quickbeam, 28 April 2010 - 07:56 PM.


#48 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 07:59 PM

I know I'm not in your shoes and this may not inspire you the way it inspired me. I was having a rough time, feeling like my needs were never being met, I never got time alone, etc. A friend told me what her grandmother shared with her. "I only have my children for about 18 years. After that is "me" time." Now when I get exasperated I try to remember that actively raising kids is truly a temporary part of life and one that goes by too quickly. I have 2 grown and 1 that's 13 and swear they grew up in just a few months! lol! Anyway, I don't know if this will help you to not be resentful for missing your time with your friends. I, too, have had to miss playdates and time with my friends. It was hard to not be resentful!

:grouphug::grouphug:

ETA: Maybe you should find someone to take care of your daughters so you can go get a massage or something. Just some you time, even if it's only an hour. You need to rejuvenate.

:grouphug::grouphug:

Yes, it inspires me. I can't believe my first baby is now 18, an ADULT!!! And I could easily sacrifice my time for them. Did we have difficulties? Of course. They're great kids, but they're not perfect. The difference with youngest dd is that I *NEED* the time with my friends BECAUSE of her, if that makes sense.

It used to be easier to meet my girlfriends at night or over the weekend for time away. But now, since my mother's death, I do it only when I have the energy to. That sometimes is only once per month, so having the co-op is so valuable to me.

My youngest sucks pretty much everything out of my life. I need to look to outside resources as a time to replenish, and our group CAN fill that need weekly. I do hope that next year it can be worked out for me not to bring her much.

#49 Denisemomof4

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 08:05 PM

I "get" RAD. We have not had it here to an extreme measure but one of my kids has the RAD diagnosis and we have fostered several kids with it, done respite for families that had RAD kids, etc.

I would say, if possible, stay home and let the other kids go. Less explaining and less people for her to manipulate.

I might be overstepping my bounds here as well, but have you had a psychiatrist evaluate her for other mental illnesses? I am part of a RAD support group and 80% of the kids with RAD had another mental illness going on as well. Bipolar was the biggest one but there were others as well. Once those mental illnesses were treated properly (mostly through medication) the RAD was much easier to address.

Just think of it like this--------kids have RAD due to poor attachment bonding and are most often adopted kids. Those people who tend to have their children taken away and placed for adoption are very often those with mental health issues that are self medicating with drugs and/or alcohol. Mental illness has a very strong gentic link so these kids are at much higher risk. Then add in any prenatal drug/alcohol exposure and it is no wonder these kids really struggle.

I know that here, medication for the bipolar was about 90% of our answer. Once that was in place and she was stable on the meds, we could address the 10% through therapy/parenting, etc.

Do you have a good attachment therapist? Do you have a good support network and RAD group? Those things were so helpful here.


I've only gotten attachment help, and even then, it was with someone over a thousand miles away. The local therapists wouldn't return my calls, even though I was hysterically BEGGING them to, and the other local people were a complete waste of time. The distant therapist was a great help, but I reached my limits of how MUCH she could help.

There is NO support locally, even for foster mothers. I crave it.

I have researched many conditions and the only one that I think could apply to her is so scary and dangerous that I'm not really ready to go there. And there really isn't help for it anyway.

I can't even put a number on how many times I've tried to get her help now.

#50 Ottakee

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 08:09 PM

Is there anyone that can watch her while you and the other kids go to the co-op? This would have to be a NON fun person who could make life as boring as possible while you are gone. She could have a plain snack, sit at the table and do her work, do some chores, etc. NO TV, video games, friends, or "fun" with the sitter.

These people though are hard to find. If you are involved in a church, maybe you could find a young grandma/empty nester to give you a break. Even an older couple if she is likely to behave for them and they understand her issues.

I know you are really struggling and disruption is an option/possibility. I am not one to push meds as a first option but if there is underlying mental illness here, treating that might allow her to remain at home and things to get much better.

Spring is a terrible time for those iwth mental illness.


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