Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Teenage and Tween, When one Emotionally Passes the Other.

It has been busy again around here. Between school meetings, special events, and finishing up all the little things around the house times flies and it is officially Spring!

The remodel on the inside is down to the trim and door painting, which is best done when it warms up a little.   Down to decorating and the finishing touches, which is wonderful considering all that has happened!

Makala and Marty are doing well, during the weekdays at home with me. It has never been difficult for me to provide and insist on a routine. There are absolutely consistent expectations around here and routine. This is what so--many--children need. As the mother of my kids I face those times when my heart wishes I could let them be the same as their peers...allow them the freedom other children have, and the opportunity to mess-up and face the consequences other children their age face.

I have chosen instead to be an over protective, over involved, chastity-belt, mother--who recognizes that "Emotionally" my children are about half their chronological age, and that by the age of 26 I might expect to see the emotional maturity of the average 18 year old. I cannot remember where I have learned this rule-of-thumb, but I promised I would not forget it when I learned it. That means, my 15 year old is still only emotionally--7 and a half. That is about right. So, while the world around her--sees a 15 year old, I know she is not on the inside yet, so I do NOT allow myself to feel any guilt for the Protection I have chosen to be in Her Life.

The difficult part of this role I play, is the Judgments from others. There are very few people in my support system that actually understand the parenting situation I face with a Physically 15 year old daughter, with the emotional development of a first grader. If I am over protective, then just remember the NEEDS an average first grade child has. A first grade child is not ready to face many peer situations a 15 year old is expected to understand and make choices that may effect the rest of their lives. Many 15 year old children ARE and Do experiment sexually, and in other ways, and that will be the way of life. But, my child is emotionally 7 and considered to be 100% Line-of-Sight. That has a completely different meaning in every way of life. So far, I am willing to take the judgment and do the right things for my child. That is what I signed up for.

Marty's needs are very different... He is Now a Tween and will go to middle school next year. He has Not had a disrupted education like his sister. He has had learning delays, she did not have. His emotional issues are completely different then her Reactive Attachment Disorder. He is able to handle the social mainstream a little better then she would be. He has been exposed to the "general population" all along. He has the good opportunity to be able to overcome his learning delays and do well in life.

At this point, it seems he is emotionally passing his sister. This has been very clear at home in many ways. This is where he needs some support and help because it is a fact he is likely going to do better in an emotional way then his older sister. This is a difficult thing for a little boy to understand, along with his own knowledge and understanding that he too was exposed. It is time that he learns to understand the differences between his special needs and the special needs his sister has.

He was safe, loved and cared for as an infant and was adopted at the age of one year old. She was Five and those years were completely different for them. No one can ever replace the early years Makala experienced in life. This is the big difference between them, and he will need to learn about what that means and why his issues never have been and never will be the same as his sissy has.

Marty just needs to learn to read, write and have confidence in himself. The rest of it is pretty normal stuff, and he will be able to manage in the main stream if he will accept and understand his whole life has been completely different then his sisters. She has not had a single school year in the main stream. Not one grade without a psychiatric hospital stay, day treatment, residential treatment, containment transition school, special placement school. I believe she has gone no longer then 4 or 5 months in a main-stream setting with an IEP and over 45% special education... She has always seemed to Learn the things that keep her looking normal... She is blessed with survival instincts and an ability to recognize patterns, and memorize anything. It works well for Her and she has hope because she is bright under the damage done to her.

It has been good for Marty to spend the weekdays with Me and his sister. He is learning to understand that He does not have the same issues she does, and he just needs to understand her needs are different than his and he will eventually learn to read and write just fine.

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