We brought the kids with us yesterday. We didn’t let them know until the morning. Our intent was to let them enjoy the first part of their week. The last time they saw their brother was back in September . We did our best to prepare them for The Therapist. We did our best to prepare them in general. Both for what the facilities would be (locked), and what the purpose was (to see and tell their brother whatever they needed to before he comes home)The rest of the morning was spent with all of us trying to keep busy instead of throwing up. I am not exaggerating. The level of dread is increasing for my husband and my self with each visit. The kids not only picked up on our emotions, but have buckets full themselves.
I suppose it went as well as can be expected. The therapist would ask the kids questions and not listen to their reply.He was however gentle with my almost fourteen year old and patient when he would freeze up. The kids were honest and fair. They were able to tell their brother what was the hardest (living in fear) and what they wanted from him (to not hurt me and to actually want to be in our home).
My youngest son admitted the kids were never unkind to him. He admitted trying to play them off both us and each other. He admitted confusion when it did not work. He admitted that there isn’t much yelling and screaming by others in our home-just him. He admitted that we were fair. There wasn’t much to complain about.
The past was dredged up in clinical terms.We once again asked him what would help him deescalate.
“That just makes me madder”
Sending him out back to blow off steam?
“That makes me madder”
Ignoring the temper fit?
“That really makes me mad.”
Room time or time outs?
“Makes me madder”
Is there anything that would help besides letting him have his way?
“Noooo, not really”
My husband again went down our list of unacceptable-to-stay-in-our-home items.
Attacking others without provocation
Including, but not limited to, using household objects as weapons,tripping, biting,or pushing down stairs.
He was also told that descriptive death threats would also not be tolerated. The normal kid “I hate you”,or even “I’ll kill him,her,you” were not included in this ban. We can tell the difference between spouting off in anger and actual intent.
Were we wrong? Had he been just spouting? Or was he serious when he would describe how he wanted me dead;or how he wanted to smash my knees etc.
No, he admitted openly,we were right. He was serious.
It was just an hour session. It felt much,much longer.
The other kids sat and watched him the whole time. My younger son had tears in his eyes. My daughter looked skeptical. My older son just looked serious.
They shook hands with their brother as we left. He was sheepish. They tried to be reassuring. Our message to our oh so confused and damaged son was simple.
We want you home. We want you to want to come home. We see good in you despite yourself. We know this is going to be hard for you. We will not put anyones saftey at risk,though. Not yours. Not ours.
My son hugged me a tad stiffly. As I hugged him, I bent down and whispered into his ear,
“Thanks for not farting on me.”
He stifled a smile and relaxed a bit.
Twenty days and counting…..