Wednesday, May 11, 2016


Some days I grow weary of behaviors that never change. They don't change in spite of the fact that they aren't working. I don't understand it. Even after years of trying, the behaviors still don't work.  Yet the behaviors don't change.

The dress. I asked Michelle to put her dress that I found in the half bathroom downstairs stuffed between the sink and the wall. Instead of putting it in her room or laundry she stuffed it by the front door. I threw it away. I am tired of this game and don't give any warnings anymore. She found it in the trash, took it out and stuffed it in a spot in the kitchen. Yea, that didn't work for her either. If she was really interested in keeping the dress she could have taken it upstairs when she saw it in the trash. I don't get it.

Michelle and Emma each have a notebook where their daily behavior is written down. Sometimes I check it daily, sometimes I check it weekly. Every day they come home and the first thing they tell me is that they got green. Emma admitted the other day that she had a yellow.  Michelle had green every day. I slipped up and missed a week. Second week Michelle said she had green every day. Yesterday I realized that I hadn't checked the last two weeks and I asked to see her notebook. She grabs her backpack and goes to the kitchen. I follow her asking her why is she walking away from me. I take her backpack and check her behavior chart. The first week was fine, the next week she must have thought I was never going to check again because she had several days of yellow. Lies. Beyond lies, if she thinks that she won't get caught, she doesn't do the right thing. I told her that eventually the truth comes out. She is getting older and still there is no trust there, none.

Summer vacation isn't here yet but she has already lost the privilege of playing outside without an adult. When she isn't supervised she always hurts someone, somehow. We have been dealing with this for years and she can't stand the limits but she doesn't make the changes necessary to have more freedom. The huge bump on Emma's head lost that freedom for Michelle.

It is tiring. I grow weary. I worry, I can't keep her under constant supervision until she is 18 and then just let her go into the world. At some point she needs to learn to make better decisions, right? Will she? Some days I wonder.


  1. Do you have a therapist that is experienced with trauma that you can consult with? with the clothes , maybe she feels she doesn't deserve them, so she sabotages herself?

    1. I occasionally email with a therapist with DSS and often confur with the school counselor. I am concerned about the move to middle school next year, wish the school counselor could go with her. Often they just try to keep me sane. I really don't feel that the dress is an issue that she doesn't think that she deserves it. She has many dresses where she doesn't mind losing one in a control battle. She is not willing to do shoes again because I took my sweet time in replacing those. Dress shoes for church, she had to wear tennis shoes or boots with her dresses and that bothered her.

  2. Kids do things for a reason. Or no reason at all. So if you consider there might be a reason, (something that you don't know about perhaps from her early past) - then it will take investigating to find out what is the reason, or maybe she has something undiagnosed. If there is no reason - such as a mental inability to come to terms with rules, then one would have to accept and love her for the fact that she is unable to comprehend. You are an extremely intelligent woman so you would know the difference. My kid is autistic and sometimes he does just what I would say is the stupidest thing, like totally uncalled for. So I ask him why? For instance, "Why do you have to turn up the TV all the way when I already know your hearing is so sensitive it can hear me whispering to your sister when we are two rooms away. You could have the TV at the lowest level and still hear it." "I can't hear it unless it is up really loud." "Well, that doesn't make any sense," until further investigating reveals that he has it so loud to block out all the other sounds that his sensitive hearing can pick up - like water boiling on the stove 30 feet away. You know your daughter, and I'm guessing that there is some deep twisty-turny reasoning that she has for what she does - that really somehow makes sense to her. I could be totally wrong, but I know when my son was little, consequences did not make any sense whatsoever to him, as he would lose what he had done wrong within seconds of doing it. He had no clue as to why at five years old it was wrong to throw a chair across a room. He was angry and he couldn't think of the consequences of what would happen to him when he did that, (originally time out until I realized he was clueless as to what time out was for) nor did he get that the consequence of throwing a chair meant it might have damaged something or hurt someone. No understanding whatsoever of consequences. It has taken me years to help him draw the line in his mind that this action equals that action. (And it sounds like this is what you are doing. Dress in wrong place - throw out the dress.) He is and will always have new things to learn regarding consequences. Just last year, he ran from a bee, out into the street, in front of a car who had to slam on her brakes to avoid hitting him. To this day, he doesn't get that getting hit by a car would have been worse than getting stung by a bee. I'll stop now, but I hope somewhere in something I said, there might be something to help, but I certainly won't be offended if you don't feel like you can relate to any of it. My kid is very, very complex. I pray that someday, somehow you can unlock your daughter's reasoning/patterns.