Thursday, May 24, 2007

Punches thrown, summer break begins

I really don't know what to do any more. I sat at work and just cried because I don't know what to do and I'm completely out of ideas. Ever feel like you are a complete failure and there is no possible way to fix things? Yeah, that's how I'm feeling. There are some people who aren't cut out to be moms and I'm thinking I may be one of those people.

Unruly got kicked out of school...on the last day of school...for getting into fight after fight after fight. All before 10 a.m. today. And from what I understand she was kicking and hitting and punching other kids HARD because they were "bothering her."

She hit hard enough for her teacher to worry about the safety and welfare of the other kids. Hard enough to get sent to the principal's office long before lunchtime. Enough for the principal to call me and say "Come pick up your daughter, she can't be here any more, she is too violent with the other children."

What if they don't let her come back to school this fall? What if she can't behave during summer camp and gets kicked out of summer camp? I don't have many options aside from quitting my job. And I can't do that.

I really, really don't know where to go next. She has been seeing a counselor at school and obviously that hasn't done a bit of good. I've tried to find a counselor for her outside of school, but, surprise surprise, the ones that see kids her age are FULL and not taking new patients.

I can't think of anything at home that would encourage this behavior, this violence in her. Hubby and I don't fight, we don't yell at each other and we don't allow her to watch violent movies or cartoons. I even cut off the Spongebob Squarepants watching because I thought it was too violent for her. I'm thinking TV may have to be entirely banned for awhile.

She doesn't get spanked and she doesn't see anyone else in our house spanked or hit or smacked or kicked or punched. No one is allowed to wrestle around at all in the house any more after the last incident with Wild.

However, she is picked on and yelled at relentlessly by her sister and I can't help but think she is turning around and taking that anger at her sister and aiming it at someone else. I can't even begin to count the number of times I've admonished Wild to not be so mean and ugly to Unruly, to just be nice for once, just be nice. But it doesn't help, sometimes it even makes things worse. Wild wakes up in the morning yelling at her sister and spends pretty much the entire time she is home being mean and hateful towards her. And what do you do about that? What? I don't know. Wild is 15, Unruly is 6...how the hell do you force the two of them to just fucking get along? Or at least get Wild to act like she's 15 instead of 5.

I'm seriously rethinking my no-spanking policy. It's not working and something has to give and it has to give NOW. This can't keep going on, she can't keep thinking she can do whatever the hell she wants to do without serious and remembered consequences. Is she punished? Yup, with time-outs, the loss of privileges and extra chores. And I can tell you...it doesn't work. I don't know what kind of kids other people have where time-outs actually work, but I'll trade with you. Please. Take her. I'll pay you.

I'm so tired. I don't want to be a mom any more. Seriously. I don't. How can you be a good mom if there are times when you don't even really like your kids all that much, much less love them?

8 comments:

Slackermommy said...

Oh girl, I feel for you. I wish I had some good advice but I don't. I'm having trouble figuring out my own kids. I can relate so much with this post especially the last sentence. I wrote a post about not liking my kid not too long ago. My suggestion is to take her to a therapist. It helped our daughter when she was going through a difficult time. I have a friend who is a child therapist in Carbondale. I'm not sure how far that is from you. Hang in there. You are not alone.

Linlee said...

Sorry to hear you are having a hard time right now. I'm horrible at advice but I'm sending you HUGS!!!!

Kim said...

Oh man, that is truly suckful. I have just been in that place of not wanting to be a mum anymore and feeling like I am failing at it miserably. I know that saying it will pass is cold cold comfort indeed but maybe just store it in the back of your head somewhere.

I don't really know what to say - perhaps it's Wild who needs some counselling?

What does Unruly say when you talk to her about it?

Apart from that, I'm wondering how a school kicks out a 5-year-old? What sort of duy-of-care is that showing to the child and support the parents in finding workable solutions???

Eugh.

I keep thinking "Badger will have advice on this one". Totally unfounded, just a gut feel.

Anonymous said...

Hi--I feel your pain! I'm new here, and I hope I'm not butting in--but this sounds familiar (particularly after reading some of your other posts) and I do have a suggestion.

Just outside Chicago is an outfit called the Pfeiffer Treatment Center. It's the clinical arm of the Health Research Institute. Website: hriptc.org. Also, you can google "Dr. William Walsh" to get an even better idea of what they do there.

Essentially, they treat behavior issues individually, biochemically. By that I mean that they test a patient to assess for her specific chemical profile and treat any imbalances specifically, rather than just throwing the whole pharmacopeia at the issue to see what sticks.

Your daughters sound a lot like mine, and they have literally given us a new lease on life. From what your describe, I don't think this is your fault at all, nor is it your children's fault. These doctors aren't quite "mainstream", but they are real doctors and they're legit. They treat patients form all over the world. The day we were there the next patient had come from Sweden. And we found the treatment to be surprisingly affordable--strangely (or not) much less expensive that what we were paying the usual therapists, psychiatrists, etc. Our oldest was a different child in about three weeks. I can't say enough about them, and what they do makes sense.

I'll be happy to talk further with you about it if you have questions. you may email me at maliamullican@aol.com.

Good luck!

Nancy said...

I think the hospital in Breese has a therapist that sees children. Not all that close to you, but closer than C-dale! Her name is Lucy.

My only other thought is to discuss it with Unruly during a calm period. Ask her to describe what she feels like when she's acting out like that. Maybe it will provide some insight - and maybe it will help her recognize when the unruliness is coming.

Anyone who tosses their kid in the scummy pool is a good Mom in my book.

Jenn said...

Thank you, everyone. It's a pretty crappy feeling when you're not liking your kid so much...it's a bit of a comfort to know I'm not the only one!

Kim...when I talk to her about it, she KNOWS the rules, she knows what she's supposed to do when she's feeling angry or hurt by someone. She has all the right answers, she just has a really hard time implementing the correct responses and she's really, really hard on herself when she has "bad behavior." She's very much an "act now, think about it later" kind of kid. So far, my experience with this school hasn't been a great one. If first grade doesn't go much better, we are going to have to start looking into private school options.

Nancy...thank you for the suggestion! Breese is very close to us and one of my friends is a labor/delivery nurse there.

Anonymous...thank you for the link...very interesting and definitely an avenue to consider if the therapy/counseling fails. I certainly don't want to drug my kid unless its the very, very last option in the book.

Pentha said...

Oh, jeez. It sounds like you have been to my house. I am caught between my two boys: 5YO Rock and 9YO HardPlace. (I love your names for the kids, btw. I've always thought of mine as Rock and HardPlace, but I never thought to use those names in my blog.)

You have described Rock to a tee: I've gone to pick him up from preK and found the teacher standing outside waiting for me with him. He has been chastised for kicking, hitting, pushing, pulling, burping, exposing himself, screaming, screeching, etc.

Yet, give him an academic task, and he can be utterly focused when he wants to, so I also have a hard time with the ADD/ADHD thoughts. I am somewhat more willing to consider drug options: If he does have a chemical imbalance, how can I withhold treatment?

I've got a friend whose son was FINALLY diagnosed with Tourrette's Syndrome -- he is so GRATEFUL for the medication, because he couldn't control himself, and he really WANTED to. He knew he was different from the other kids, but he couldn't restrain his behavior.

I had a no-spanking policy as well; but Rock drove me to break it. Quite frankly, spanking is not very effective: It's a punishment, but not a deterrent. Unfortunately, I still resort to spanking when he has pushed my last button. I hate that I break, but I do the best I can.

ugh ugh ugh. It's so stressful. We want our children to have smooth lives, to grow up happy and well-adjusted. But there really is no "way" to do that. It's so much harder than we ever imagined it could be.

I didn't mean to write a novel; I found you through a comment on Sandy's blog... and I bookmarked you. "I'll be back."

Jenn said...

Pentha,
Welcome! Rock and HardPlace, great "names!"

Oh my, sounds like we have the same kids! Exactly the same kids. My aversion to the drug therapy is that I'm afraid if I tell the doctor up front I'm okay with drugs, then he/she won't be willing to try anything else and will just prescribe something from the get go. If we can get through this with behavior modification I'd rather do that. If drugs are necessary, eventually, I'll be okay knowing I tried all other avenues first.

That no-spanking policy is SO hard to stick with when they drive you to that edge of sanity.