Remember the Placing Authority agreed to fund an assessment for private therapy, well we had the assessment.
The assessment took place over a number of different appointments with us each individually.
The first appointment was me followed by me and Mr FO5. I met with the therapist in our home and Mr FO5 joined some time later. We talked about the girls, their back grounds, difficulties and what we hoped therapy would achieve. Around 2 hours later Mr FO5 joined the meeting and the conversation moved on to discussing our relationship and our own experiences of being parented as children. I actually find these sorts of meetings really theraputic, the opportunity to talk about and wonder out loud about my idea’s and theory’s as well as fears and emotions with someone who understands is always very welcomed.
The second appointment was myself and big girl, this appointment was held at a local village hall. In the room the therapist had placed some cuddly toys, some bean bags and a selection of clear numbered plastic wallets. After introductions and a little ‘getting to know each other time’, the therapist invited big girl to retrieve the first of the wallets, explaining to her that each one contained an activity for us to complete together. The first wallet contained 2 sets of 8 lego bricks and instructions for the ‘adult’ to build something, and for the ‘child’ to replicate. I built a small tower and big girl copied. The second wallet contained instructions for the ‘adult’ to draw a simple picture and the ‘child’ to copy. I drew a beach and big girl copied. The third wallet contained instructions for the ‘adult’ to tell the story of the first day they met the ‘child’. So I did, big girl found this a little uncomfortable and was eager to move on to the next wallet. The fourth wallet contained instructions for the ‘adult’ and the ‘child’ to play a game that they usually enjoy together. We played i-spy we each had 2 goes and then big girl decided it was time for the final wallet. The fifth wallet contained instructions for ‘adult’ and ‘child’ to put hats on each other. We were given a bag of hats and big girl was very happy to take part insisting that i took a photo of her with all the hats on. Big girl was happy to help tidy away all the toys when the session ended.
The third appointment was myself and baby girl. The room was laid out the same and the activities in the 5 envelopes were identical. Baby girls was a little less compliant that big girl and often showed me she wanted to take charge and be in control. She also curled up on my lap like a baby when we talked about the story of the day we first met. Baby girl was also quite stroppy when the session ended and sulked.
The fourth appointment was myself and middle girl. Again the room and activities were identical. Middle girl was very open about her adoption explaining ‘were’ adopted’ to the therapist a short way in to the session when they were getting to know each other. Middle girl, like big girl, was also uncomfortable when we talked about the story of the day we first met but unlike her older sister she didn’t try and hurry the conversation along she just sat uncomfortably and listened. When the session ended middle girl helped tidy all the items away and was very eager to leave.
A report from the therapist has been sent to the placing authority which identified all the girls as having ‘overall difficulties well within the range of clinical significance’, her recommendation is 6 to 12 months (with a likelihood of 12 months being required) of DDP therapy (Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy) which will be facilitated with individual sessions for each of the girls and myself (and Mr FO5 when work permits) taking place no less than fortnightly with regular ‘catch up’ appointments with just myself and Mr FO5 when work permits. (So Im looking at at least twice weekly appointments for the next year.)
The report has been forwarded to the service manager at the placing authority where by I assume they will read the recommendations and decide IF they’re prepared to pay for it. I envisage this will involve several months of debate between the placing authority and our local authority over who should pay.
So, watch this space!