Where We Are For Now: Reflections

As I have been reading some of my own words in my past blogs, there is a stinging reality that takes place. My experience in parenting all of our kids has been written about over the years, and the facts are there. The good, the bad and the ugly, yet it has been mostly good.
This past year has been one of the most difficult and painful experiences we have ever had. We have been taken to worlds unknown! Yet, as I go back and read, there is so much MORE good.

One of the aha moments we had recently, while preparing for a counseling session with Sweetie, (last weekend in fact) was that, the better we did, the more we understood, the harder we tried, including applying all the training we have learned over the years; Sweetie rose to the occasion to deflect and defeat the love that was shown to her.

This has not been a reflection of our parenting, but of her brokenness.
We have soul searched, gone back over hours and hours of video, recorded in our home, audio recorded in our home, and hours of writing things down…. and we have found that for SOME children, functioning within a family setting is not what is best for them. It certainly is not what is best for the family.
I think she is an EXTREME case. We are her 4th set of parents. She has been with us 5 years and had a period of time where she actually did well. Many of those times are documented on this very blog!

There are no perfect parents and there are no perfect paradigms in parenting kids from hard places. I just want to encourage those of you who are in the thick of fighting for your children’s security, and healing, that even if they do not respond, it does not reflect upon your efforts, it tells us that trauma, neglect, and child abuse is JUST. THAT. DAMAGING.

Our children will grow into adults, and at some point, they will either take the tools we have offered and begin to use them, or they will continue the cycle of despair. That is not up to us, but up to them.

Sweetie 4 can be  lovable and sweet, and then there is that other side that is cold, and  unreachable at this point.
She has announced to us and her counselor that she does not want a family and is requesting a different type of placement. She has said it off and on when dysregulated. This time, it was calm and factual.
At the same time she said, “It isn’t you mom. It isn’t.” “I want to have a close relationship with you, going out to lunch, having dinner, laughing and talking.” (these are things we have always done in between her bouts of rage and anger)
Superficial, is close for her, and possibly all she is capable of at this point.  
She LOVES that part of being in a family. But she cannot handle simple family life.
So, as she continues in intensive therapy, including family therapy, we are continuing to soul search what our next step is as parents that will help HER SUCCEED. Our goal, is to help her be the best person she can be.
If that TRULY means that she might be more successful in an orphanage type setting, which I don’t understand, but I don’t have to ; then, that may be the direction we will need to look into.
She has been able to successfully say in counseling that she is afraid of hurting us and she know she will if she comes home. She doesn’t want to!
That is good!
Obviously she is not a typical kiddo. We have 8 kiddos. She has been more work than the other 7 put together. LOL
But you know what? I wouldn’t change a thing. We will not reject her. We will not stop loving her. I look forward to the day when she has an “aha” moment of her own, and sees clearly she has been loved.

I was just reading down thread a ways: Understanding the Window of Tolerance. It made me happy to remember how things were for awhile. 🙂

5 Responses to Where We Are For Now: Reflections

  1. Hailey says:

    I’m praying for your family.

  2. I know so much of what you mean. My Maxim, who also went through so many families cannot possibly understand what family means – even I can see that. How could he? If trust is broken over and over again by “mother” – the word “mother” cannot mean the same thing to him as it does to me. Yet, that word and the concept that we understand so differently is there between us. I begin to think there has to be a new reality. I cannot force him to understand MY vision; I can’t ever truly understand his, either. I think if I did, the word “mother” wouldn’t mean the same to me, either.

  3. Melin says:

    Brutally hard stuff, Christie. Hard to know if her comments are the ultimate manipulation or the ultimate truth. None of this happens in a vacuum. I’m proud of you for holding the family together as I know your husband is, also.

    She’s very young still – very. I don’t think there are too many kids that age who have the perspective that comes with age. She has perspective we don’t have, of course, but it comes from a damaged place. Remember the plumb line. You’re a good woman and so are your instincts. Be brave, my friend.

  4. MamaV says:

    Whatever the outcome, I pray that she will know the love of God deep down In her heart. That is what is most important!

  5. chaika says:

    Though your dear daughter has certainly experienced more than her fair share of trauma, she has also known your deep and unconditional love. I am sure she is confused and frightened about her place in the world and in your family. But I hope that the foundation of love you have given her will lead her forward, as well as leading her back to you. You and your family will continue to be in my thoughts.

Comments warmly welcomed!


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