All posts for the month December, 2012

2012 Blog Review – Happy New Year Everyone!

Published December 31, 2012 by thefamilyof5

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 15,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 3 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.


Life Story

Published December 31, 2012 by thefamilyof5

Life story work is so important for my girls, they NEED to know where they came from and how they got to where they are now in order process their trauma and heal, we did a lot of life story work in that first year or so.

Today, whilst driving to my parents for dinner to celebrate new year, baby girl asks from the back of the car ‘when will you have a baby mommy?’ After explaining to her that her and her sisters were, and always would be, my babies and our family was complete she replied ‘no, you need to have a baby after you get married’.

She was very adamant and stressed.
So I told her the story, the story of how a long long time ago Mommy and Daddy got married and we decided that we wanted a family. At the same time lots of important people had decided that their birth mum wasnt doing the mommy job properly and they’d need to find a new family for baby girl and her sisters. And so all the important people got together with mommy and daddy and it was decided that baby girl and her sisters would come and live with us and we would become a family forever.

And I followed this up by saying ‘so see, your all my babies, my baby girls, I don’t need to have a baby, our family is complete’

Baby girl looked confused and said ‘so how did we all fit in your tummy at the same time?’

Needless to say I had to go right back to the beginning and explain that she hadn’t been born out of my tummy, but that she was born from the tummy of her birth mum and she lived with her for a little while etc etc etc

We talk about being adopted a lot, they know they have a birth mum, and that she writes to us and we write back. They know they lived in foster care and then they met us and came to live with us forever.
As baby girl has grown her memories have become a blur and her understanding of who she is and where she came from has got lost, she knows the words we use, but she doesn’t understand what they mean it seems.

We’re going to have to pick up the pace and go back to basics when it comes to ‘Life Story’ work with our baby girl, I’d taken for granted that she remembered, that she understood, that she knew who she was, but she didn’t.

Now she’s ready to ‘understand’, she wants to ‘understand’, she NEEDS to ‘understand’, and we will help her.

Child Protection

Published December 21, 2012 by thefamilyof5

Child protection is something that’s always in the forefront of my thoughts.

My children, like all children need protecting from many things. Neglect, emotional trauma, all of the things that they were not protected from in the beginning.

I worry my children will get hungry.
I worry their friends will fall out with them.
I worry they’ll grow out of their shoes and I won’t notice.
I worry I won’t get a stain out of their clothes.
I worry I won’t get their hair tidy enough for school.
I worry they’ll fail at their school work.
I worry I won’t rub that cut knee enough or kiss away the hurt properly.
I worry I’ll forget some important event like a school play or award.
I worry I’ll overlook or not notice something important to them.
I worry I’ll not ‘hear’ something they’re trying to convey.
I worry that they’ll feel unloved, unliked, alone.

I worry because all of these things and many more can rekindle the scary feelings they became accustomed too. Feelings no child should ever know.

My girls felt rejection tonight, rejection from grandparents that just cant/wont put them first.

I felt failure tonight, I failed to protect them.

Decisions, Decisions!

Published December 19, 2012 by thefamilyof5

So middle girl is still sleeping in our room and she’s still waking us in the early hours, we’re shattered, she’s shattered and its damaging our relationship with middle girl, especially for me. I feel angry and resentful towards her when she wakes me, which is pretty much every day.

Baby girl however is just lovely, the difference is remarkable. She’s happy, she’s smiley, she’s not tired, my relationship with her is blossoming, we’re meeting each others mummy/daughter needs, its just lovely.

So what to do. If we put middle girl back in her own room then my relationship with her will improve somewhat, but my relationship with baby girl will suffer as a result. She’ll become increasingly more sleep deprived and in turn become controlling and difficult.

I should never have to choose which child should be happy, no mother can make a decision like this!

CAMHS Part 2 – Session 8

Published December 12, 2012 by thefamilyof5

Not much to report here really. I met with our regular family therapist and I also met a psychotherapist who is going to join her in supporting our family.

I don’t really have much to say about him, not much you can learn in a hour really is there, but I did find him pleasant, and informative and in a somewhat irritating way he managed to keep our conversations on track. Quite often during my sessions with the family therapist our conversations can go off on tangents and flit from one topic to another, I guess its a female thing, but the psychotherapist is male and he kept us on track!

I guess having another ‘professional’ on board to support our family can only be a good thing, can’t it?!

I’m meeting with them both again next week.

I Want Never Gets!

Published December 12, 2012 by thefamilyof5

Do you remember being told as a child that ‘I want never gets’ in other words, its more polite to say ‘I would like’ rather than ‘I want’.

I wanted so many things from motherhood. I wanted giggles, snuggles, conversation, casual chatting, baking days, craft afternoon, family games nights, late night movie nights.

In reality I haven’t been able to have any of those things. I have a child with ASD, one with Auditory processing difficulties and one with control issues and all 3 have some attachment difficulties and compete with each other for everything.

Big girl, with ASD finds cuddles, hugs and general touch somewhat difficult, and she also struggles to hold a conversation, she will happily spend hours talking at you, retelling over and over all manner of facts and pieces of generally unimportant pieces of random information that she’s absorbed throughout her short little life, but she can’t chat, she can’t share a real moment.

Middle girl has auditory processing difficulties which means talking in general is difficult but holding a conversation is near impossible and most definitely difficult for all parties involved. Her attachment difficulties also mean she doesn’t really make a connection, she hides behind her smile and keeps herself safe inside.

Baby girl, ahh baby girl, she is emotionally and socially delayed by a couple of years. She can chat, albeit on the level of a 3year old rather than the 5year old she is. Her attachment difficulties leave her feeling as though the world is a very scary place and that things can change very quickly. She feels very out of control of her life, she’s scared and frightened. She compensates for this by trying to control the world and adults around her as best as she can because the adults in her life can’t be trusted as adults don’t always make good decisions, or at least this is how she feels inside, chaotic and scared.

Put them together and you have big girl talking at everyone and ordering them about (because that’s all she knows how to do), baby girl desperate to control the situation in any way she can (even if that means controlling people and provoking reactions) and middle girl frustrated and desperate for attention.

Can you imagine trying to make fairy cakes through that?

Or setting up a painting activity?

Or playing a game with that much competitiveness about?

Or just trying to have a chat about each others day?

Even bedtime stories became a ground for competitiveness and attention seeking with each desperate to turn the page first, or wanting to be the first to comment on the picture, or the first to ask what happens next, or the even the first to interrupt and it wasn’t much easier doing bed time stories individually either.

And as for late night movies with children that have sleep problems, well that just isn’t even worth considering.

Doing ‘stuff’ just isn’t how I envisaged it would be. Its hard, too hard which ultimately has meant I’ve withdrawn myself from doing these sorts of activities with my girls, there just isn’t enough of me to go round or perhaps its just my inability to cope.

Don’t get me wrong, individually my girls all have some beautiful quality’s and we have shared some lovely times, I don’t want this to sound like I’m putting them down in any way, after all their difficulties are not something they have ever had any choice over but as a family, we just don’t function in a way I could have ever envisaged or could have prepared myself for.

I would like some normality, I would like to chat, I would like to enjoy doing things with my girls and most of all, I would like to enjoy being a mummy.

‘This blog is brought to you with the aid of a months worth of sleep deprivation courtesy of middle girl’

3 weeks in……..

Published December 6, 2012 by thefamilyof5

Middle girl has been sleeping in our room for 3 weeks now. She’s woke me and hubby at 4.10am, 5am, 5.20am and many other ridiculously early hours pretty much every morning, she’s showing no sign of having learnt her lesson!

There’s only 3 weeks till the fat man comes down the chimney, I wonder what list she is on this year.

I am so tired that I can barely function. My house is dirty, my washing basket is over flowing, my to do list is getting bigger and bigger, our diets have consisted of what ever can be done quickest and with the least mess. I’ve presents to wrap and cards to write. I’ve got appointments and school plays filling my diary for the next 2 weeks, I just need to find the energy to be able to them.

If I put her back in her own bed she’ll wake baby girl and then she’ll get in trouble at school because she’s tired.

This is supposed to be season of joy and happiness. Instead its miserable.

This is an impossible situation that can’t carry on, it just can’t.

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