My Heart is Breaking for My Son
I think the hardest part of being a parent is seeing your children hurting, sad, or in pain. I don’t know if that will ever change as they get older. Maybe, it will get easier. Time will tell.
I’m not talking about a stubbed toe or a tantrum over not getting their way. I’ve overcome that years ago. I’m that mean mom that tells her kids to “get up, stop crying, and maybe next time you will listen to me and not …” I’m also the mom that can listen to hysterical sobbing over not getting a toy. My husband, on the other hand, is not so fortunate. The sound of crying gives him anxiety. But, I’m not going to write about him right now.
What I don’t handle well is knowing that one of my children is doing the best he can with the hardship that he has to deal with and the authority figures in his life giving up on him.
My kids aren’t angels. They are high energy. They don’t sit still unless they are watching TV, tablets, or YouTube. They have meltdowns. They are spontaneous. They have a strong sense of right and wrong. They are caring. They are loving. They like to have fun.
Maybe, I haven’t done everything right. Maybe, it has something to do with their genetics. Maybe, it has something to do with their history prior to being placed with us through foster care. Maybe, it is due to the trauma of being placed with people they had never seen before. Maybe, they’re “normal” kids and society has an unrealistic expectation of how children are supposed to behavior.
I have seen my son grow in leaps and bounds. When he was 4, I would have gladly given him ADHD medication. He was all over the place with his behaviors and dramatic meltdowns. I called him “Drama King”. However at 7, he has grown into a much more controlled version of himself. At home, he doesn’t “need” medication. Granted, we do a lot of behavior modification with him and work around most of his behaviors. And, I’ve been blessed with his spitting image via his 4 year old little sister, who makes me appreciate how well behaved he has become.
Unfortunately, he is not finding the same success in school and in daycare. He is very smart and does okay with his school work, but scores low on all behavioral measures in school. He is always in “safe seat”. He finds his way to the “buddy room” every week. And, he’s made his way to the Principle’s office so many time year, he’s been told that he would be in ISS if he was in high school. Not to mention, working on homework makes me want to bang my head on cement in hopes of getting out of helping him. It is horrible. What should only take 3 minutes, can take 30.
It doesn’t end there. At daycare, he has just received his first OSS for a day and has been told if he doesn’t improve, he will be removed from daycare.
Being an adoptive mother, through foster care, I’m well aware of the battle I’m fighting for my children. Their biological family history is not pretty. My kids will face many complex feelings based upon their “perceived” abandonment from their biological family. They will have to deal with facing that part of their life at some point. They will have to struggle with any inherited mental health disorders or consequences from drug exposure. They will be labeled. They will feel less than. They will fight demons that I wish they wouldn’t have to.
Granted, they might not all experience these feelings and the degrees of severity could be different for them all, but it is hanging out there.
So although I don’t feel that my son “has to have” medication to function successfully at home, he does at school and daycare…to prepare him to fight for a successful future.
When he becomes a teen, I will have to battle to keep him from taking a wrong path. However, I don’t want that path chosen for him at 7 by being labeled a “bad seed”. If he is given this label now, I know what will happen 10 years from now. It is imperative for him to have a good experience at school to boost his chances of success as an adult.
We will continue to focus on behavior control and life lessons every day to prepare him for getting off of medication in the future and the potential pitfall of seeking illegal drugs or non-prescribed medications to control his emotions and behaviors as he becomes a teen and an adult.
But, I won’t let anyone put him on the train towards self destruction. He’s my sweet, smart, beautiful baby boy. He will not be a statistic on my watch!
What struggle have you had with daycare or school?
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