On a good day, parenting will test the integrity of your character. On a bad day, parenting will test your will to live. Parenting children with trauma histories will cause you to test the integrity of everything and everyone you thought you knew, for the rest of your life.
~J. Skrobisz

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Three things

UGH to Christine that makes us work. Christine, I love to hate you! xxoo and big fat lip raspberries on your right arm.

Why the hatred, you ask? Because. She's created an attachment challenge for us and since the very notion of doing what she's asking makes me all jittery and anxious and wanting to run away or bury my head, I know that it is EXACTLY WHAT I NEED TO DO.

THAT's why I hate her. She knows what I need when I don't.

OK gals, click the linkeroo, sign yourself up and get your heines in gear. Let's harvest some RADishes from the garden.

Next point of order: Withholding.
After many years of trying to treat Sissy's bowel issues ... (ok, back up Jennie. You haven't told them the whole deal, have you?)

Let me restart with some background.
I told you Sissy's story and mentioned her raw, bloody, blistered, impetigoed bottom, yes? Well, she also had a torn hymen. Which potentially means but is not in itself conclusive evidence, that Sissy was sexually abused and not just improperly changed when soiled. All of her psychological issues about toileting and proper hygiene of her bottom suggests it, however, including her chronic bowel issues.

OK, so, back to the bowel issues.
We've tried many different remedies to alleviate her bowel issues all at the suggestions of the pdoc and psychologist. But since RTC, it's gotten much worse. Much worse means: she won't eliminate for 6-8 days and when she does, it is 6 inches in diameter and bloody. not hard, just mind-boggling enormous. The IFI supervisor suspects some internal issues owing to the suspected abuse, particularly as Sissy is embarking puberty. She says she's seen this before in boys and girls alike that have been abused. They get to puberty and their stools are enormous and it is evidence of a perforation gone undetected. The pdoc just simply said, "let the gen practitioner figure it out."

OK then.
So, off to the gen practitioner today. For now he's calling it "withholding", a typical constipation issue that children have because they condition themselves to hold their stools to save themselves the embarrassment of notifying an adult at school that they need to go or because of fear of the public toilets in the school and the jeers from peers. So we are to increase Sissy's juice (which is nonexistent, she has an aversion complete with gagging), decrease the dairy (which is Sissy's first love), add miralax and schedule toileting as a 15 minute session directly after breakfast, her feet propped up on a short stool.

Guess who was a grumpy gus that made us all miserable when we got back from the doc? Did you guess that it was Sissy? Aren't ya'll so smart! Show of hands, how many of you think tomorrow is going to RADilicious when I tell her to drink juice instead of her coveted milk and then tell her she HAS TO use the toilet? Oh my! ALL of you have raised your hands! Well thanks for nothing then! lol

Anyone else have RADishes that withhold? Is this common? I've never read it in the RAD texts so this is news to me. Talk to me girls. Clue me in.


Lastly, does your RADish do the morning thing? Some days I go to bed and I tell myself, Get ready momma cuz she's going to start tomorrow with a bang! I'll have picked up on a subtle nuance of Sissy's that says, "And now I will make you pay!"

And so she'll start her morning having made a wrong choice and she'll just sit there or stand there or pace or whatever it is she tries to do to get my attention. Her whole body language says, "Ta Da! I'm doing something you wouldn't want me to do on PURPOSE! Now... what are you going to do about it?"

Like Wednesday morning. I come out of my room and there she was, wearing that mismatched outfit she knows I told her not to wear. What I really wanted to say as a good mommy was, "Good morning sweetheart! How are you?" but if I did that, it'd have been my death sentence.

She was sitting on the sofa like she was the queen of England, dressed in her I-look-like-a-baffoon-in-this-ridiculous-ensemble outfit and I stopped, took half a second to gather my strength and resolve and said, "No. Go change it now."

She hesitated and I smiled. "You know that outfit's a no." And I pointed. Then slowly, her eyes on me the whole time, she slid off the sofa and sulked to her room to change. She came out of her space and put her laundry in the laundry room, a very obvious gesture which meant and don't forget to check mom, because i didn't change my underwear and I want to see if you'll care to remind me.

And she hadn't been awake 10 minutes and I had yet to give her a friendly greeting and I picked through the laundry and noticed the absence of dirty underwear. "Sissy. change your underwear." Silently, she went back to her room and did it.

Without meds, she'd have raged. With meds she complies but with or without, she still tests me the instant my eyes are open. I don't get to my coffee before I've had to trouble shoot these irritating tests of my will. Sometimes she'll fire off as many as five or six in the span of 10 minutes. it's exhausting! And I wonder to myself, with all of this plotting, planning, brooding and scheming, the poor dear must be delirious! Some days when the mornings are really bad I just say, "Honey, I'm not going to stop loving you for doing all of this nonsense but neither will I stop giving you consequences. Your choice. Make it a good one!"


And so I conclude on that note with a reluctant attitude to take on Christine's attachment challenge. Sissy starts out every day challenging me before I've even turned on my brain and I'm about to make her mornings that much more fun. I really don't want to do what Christine suggests. I would much rather stomp my feet and walk off in a huff and slam a few doors. But I'm gonna do it. You should too.

xxoo to all my favorite RAD mommies in the world. You gals rock the house! Join me for some stiff drinks next Friday night, we're gonna need it.


Happymom4 aka Hope Anne said...

Only child that I knew who had a similar issue to Sissy's (so bad he ended up in ER with his wole bowel packed full . . . stomach hard as a rock . . .) turned out to have an allergy (wheat if I recall right) and after that was pulled from his diet, life became much more tolerable for everyone. Prior to this, he'd stretched his intestines so hugely that he had no "go" signal anymore unless things were drastic . . . so bits of softer bm's would ooze out on their own, and he almost always stunk horribly due to that, even as a 10 or 11 year old. EVERYONE was glad when that problem was finally figured out after LOTS of tests and trips to specialists . . . Took time for his inner workings to get straightened back up and he had to have a "toliet session" after each meal. (Which, since he had Asperger's Syndrome didn't make life any easier!)

GB's Mom said...

Ho-ray for you! I am trying it to. The one thing that helped me when MK was younger and started pushing my buttons when her eyes open and didn't stop until she got on the bus was setting me alarm to go off a half hour before she got up. That way I had a cuppa tea in silence before I had to deal with the nonsense. {{{Hugs}}}

Corey said...

Yes. Daniel's bowel issues were exactly the same. We did not switch to juice but daily Miralax worked things out. Much to his dismay. Dosing took some work.

Bren said...

Withholding is a common childhood thing and I don't think it is a RAD related issue. Isn't it funny that when you parent a RAD kid, it is hard to figure what is RAD and what isn't??? RAD is so all encompassing that is is almost impossible to look beyond it. My niece withholds and is on the Miralax as is my friend's son. Neither have RAD.
The morning thing....oh yeah. I always KNOW what kind of day I will have within a few minutes of her getting up. Do they dream this crap up while sleeping????

Mama Drama Times Two said...

Our guy had big issues last year with holding and subsequent leakage (he wasn't even aware of the seepage- what a mess). Miralax, Miralax, and laxative pills once in a while to clear things out - lots of fruit and water, scheduled time in the am (teach the bowel when to empty) some basic biology education on what was happening and why he was messing his pants (chronic stretching weakens the muscles needed to push poop out...)and asking if he has pooped lately. His causes are past chronic abuse "back there", meds and control issues. Treating it as a medical/biology problem not a personal failure helped immensely with what will probably be a life long issue with constipation. Good Luck.

J. said...

we have the same issues with Calvin, scheduling bathroom time helps, morning, late afternoon and befroe bed here. He also gets a huge dose of peglyte everyday, it is what they use to clean our your bowel before a colonscopy, it's strong stuff. He still soils a bit at there are still some issues when he is stressed but the odor is gone because it is impossible for him to withhold for very long. He a barium enema and his boel is stretched beyond belief, he may need surgery... only time will tell.

Diana said...

We screwed around with doctors for well over a year with my son's constipation/leakage issues. It was a nightmare! Nothing, and I mean NOTHING helped. They had him on mega doses of miralax (despite me repeatedly telling them that it wasn't working), restricted diets, increased fiber, consuming a full bottle of mineral oil every week (GROSS - and wildly unhealthy) and still nothing was helping.

I finally got sick of paying the fancy pants idiots (NOT a fan of doctors!!) and did my own thing. I went on the internet and found some good old fashioned home remedies. My personal favorites were good old fashioned "dynomite" - OJ and olive oil (WAY more healthy than chemically process mineral oil). Equal parts (about 3/4 cup) of each every night for about 2 weeks. You can even get lemon flavored oil at some health food stores to make it taste better if you want. I didn't. I just used the light tasting olive oil you can get at any grocery store. I also graudually started decreasing the amount of oil after the first week. My kiddo got a tasty cup of prune juice every morning. He hated it. And finally, after about 10 days of this business, I went to the health food store and bought a good quality adult colon cleanse kit. It was just pills. I gave him half doses of the cleanse along with a good vitamin c pill. FINALLY we had success and haven't had a problem since. It's been almost 2 years now.

Along with doing my own thing, when my son would complain about the new regieme, I expalined to him that all the poop that was stuck in his body was making him very sick and it needed to come out. Until he was ready to let it come out, he had to drink what I was giving him. I also told him that once he let all that poop out that he didn't have to drink the stuff I was giving him any more. He took me seriously and started pooping.

I'm not sure the regieme would have been effective in parts. I think it really did take all of it. High doses of vitamin c and prune juice are natural laxatives, the oil lubricated the intestinal track and helped to break up the stuck stuff and get it moving, and the colon cleanse made sure the whole system was cleaned out, but not with force, so the colon had time to adjust to it's new size.

I still give my son a Fiber One tablet every day, we eat lots of fruits and veggies, and I sneek those now beloved chia seeds into everyone's diet as often as I can.

Happymom4 aka Hope Anne said...

Extra virgin coconut oil is really great too for moving things along, and healthy for you as well! You can mix it into things such as stir fries, use it to fry potatoes/egss etc. etc. Great stuff! It's useful for all kinds of skin issues and makes a great massage oil if you like to give your kiddoes massages on their backs/arms or even just to rub into their hands. Read the book "Coconut Cures" and as my Dd says, "If even half of what they claim is true, it'd be wise to use it!" She had some significant health issues improve after using it regularly for awhile, and now she has me hooked.