Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Court and custody

We went to court again yesterday, we had full custody reinstated to us.

No, no, no... congratulatory gifts are not necessary.....really! Just donate something in our names to the Get-Rid-of-RAD foundation...What??? No such foundation exists????????


Monday, September 20, 2010

Random RADness

Middle-one needed note cards for school. His teacher told them that they would need to get some for Science class. Middle was so concerned about this that he asked Ms. Teacher to email me to let me know. She did. I confirmed that they were just your average, standard, white, 3x5 index cards. She said, they were.

That was Friday...

All weekend we heard...

"I need note cards for school"
"don't forget to get my note cards for school"
"My teacher said that I had to have note card Monday"
"Can we go get my note cards now?"
"If you go to the store, don't forget to get my note cards"


Trouble trusting son?

So, being awesome parents and all, on Sunday, Mr. T got Middle his note cards. I put them in his backpack.

Sunday night was filled with...

"Did you put my note card in my backpack?"
"Where are my note cards?"
"I have to check to see if my note cards are in my backpack"
"I can't forget to take my note cards to school"


After school on Monday, I'm checking Middle's backpack and low&behold.....there is a lovely, multi-colored, spiral note card book in his backpack...right next to his new, unopened pack of cards that we provided...I take the bait and ask...

"Middle, where did these note cards come from?"

"My teacher bought some in case someone forgot to bring theirs and I asked if I could have one and she said I could"


And the colors do match the large, 5 subject, spiral notebook he conned out of her, so nicely too.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Sunday, September 12, 2010

An eye for an eye, a cone for a cone

Restitution is a great tool for parenting RAD kids (well any kids actually). But after a while having a kid work and work ...and work............and woooooooorkkkkk, to earn money to pay for -fill in the blank-, loses it's power a bit.

Sometimes you just need to cut to the punch.

So this week we learned that Middle-One had been using his lunch account (which is actually the money the school district paid back to us when his free-lunch forms were finally approved) to buy rounds of ice cream in the lunch room...yeah, we're pretty proud of those social skills ;o) Now he has LOTS of friends.

We got the printout from the cafeteria and had the proof and the amount. We could have added it to his work log and given him more chores... but ya know, we just didn't want to.

We talked to our AT and came up with this plan... We calculated the total that he spent. We added in ice cream and cones (to equal the total spent) into the grocery shopping and brought them home.

When it was time for ice cream, Middle said

"I'm going to finish my chore and then have my ice cream"

I replied with...

"Oh I'm sorry sugar, the ice cream is for your brothers"


"Yes, since you have been eating ice cream at school... a LOT of ice cream too, we felt that it was only fair for them to have ice cream too"


"You have been very concerned lately about things being fair. This is only fair after all"


"And sweetie, if you would like a dessert, we have bananas and fruit cups"


He left his chore undone and stomped to his room with the announcement that he was going to bed.

Sweet dreams

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Random RADness

Most of these are humorous. This one is not.

This morning, Middle-One woke up with a stuffy head and a scratchy throat. Normally he doesn't even let on that he doesn't feel good. So when he came in and told me while I was making breakfast I guessed that he REALLY didn't feel well. It was fairly obvious that he was feeling pretty miserable.

We decided he would stay home from church and later, after breakfast, he just broke down in tears saying

"I don't like not feeling good, I don't want to be sick"

Mr. T and Ebear both looked at me and asked what was up with the tears.

My guess.... Being sick makes you vulnerable. You lose control. If you really don't feel well you have to depend on others to take care of you. You have to trust. For a kid who can't trust it can be a pretty scary thing.

Fortunately Middle has a good caring mom who took good care of him while everyone else went to church. ;o)

Inconsistent Consistency

In traditional parenting it is so crucially important to be consistent. Always! Follow through with immediate consequences every time it’s needed. Developmentally normal children will eventually catch on and develop the cause and effect that is part of the natural social and emotional development that God created.

I have memories of whole days trying to be the consistent parent while my boys would just go through the behavior chart and do everything they weren’t supposed then come and tell me what I was supposed to do because of their behavior. I was their puppet. I was a confused puppet because all I had learned about parenting was that if we were consistent in our responses to behavior then they would learn eventually.

Guess what… they NEVER learned!! I wore myself out being consistent.

With RAD kids, the 100% consistent and immediate response just provides another avenue of control so we have to flip that to effectively parent.

RAD kids need consistency but they don’t need to always have predictable consequences. It helps them to think and develop cause & effect if we can keep them guessing. So RAD parents sometimes practice consistency, inconstantly.

Simply put that means we will always do *something* but they won’t always know what we are going to do. Our therapist has said we really can do anything. We are the parents and whatever we decide on for a consequence (remaining within the legal and moral realms) is good.

In the times that I have been on top of my game I have provided crazy and humorous consequences. “Stop, or I will tap dance!!” … That almost always elicits a laugh and it does provide cause & effect. And nurturing consequence; “You obviously need to be tickled/hugged/filled with sweetness (given something sweet to eat). During times of extreme frustration (mine) or complete deregulation (theirs) I have just reached into their room and taken something. Even a pencil lost, is a consequence. It doesn’t have to be something of value, it just has to be something that I, the mom, decided to do. The more it leaves them wondering what in the world we are doing, the better. So break the pattern, be inconsistent and make them think.