The Lone Rager (Spelled Correctly!)

 Chasing Lilly, Foster children  Comments Off on The Lone Rager (Spelled Correctly!)
Sep 212018
 

the-LONE-rager-Nealie-Rose

Tommy drew this picture after watching an old black and white movie. I like the innocence of the picture, because the Lone Ranger was a good guy. But it made me think of the real life “lone ragers” who are out there waiting to explode and hurt people. A lot of them seem to have trauma histories, and the mental help they needed wasn’t provided.

As the parent of a trauma child, do you ever feel like nobody is listening to your cries for help? Like you’re yelling down a big empty hole in the ground, and it’s all for nothing?

You write a letter asking for help for your special needs child or a situation concerning that child, and you get no response? You leave emails and messages to people who might be able to help, but don’t get back answers, or the answers are vague an non-commital?

That’s all too familiar. But I notice that the yelling for help for our Trauma Kids is increasing, and if enough of us yell down the hole (so to speak), there’s bound to be an eventual earthquake!

We need  more resources to be provided to schools and teachers trained on childhood trauma. Residential facilities must be available when people and kids need to be kept safe, (They keep closing! WHY???)  And respites are needed for families of these kids.

Don’t give up. Yell, because these kids aren’t going away. You don’t want to read about another trauma kid being the next “Lone Rager” who endangers society.

-Nealie

How to Stay Calm in RAD Land

 Chasing Lilly, Foster children  Comments Off on How to Stay Calm in RAD Land
Aug 032018
 

Canva-Field-of-Flowers-Nealie-RoseIf you are a parent of a Developmental Trauma or RAD child, it’s the hardest thing to stay calm. I know first-hand. (See page 168 of Chasing Lilly when I could have creamed Lilly in the locker room, lol!)

There are some things that you can do to help stay calm.

When your child acts out in a big way, don’t say a n y t h i n g. Secure the area for safety, and as long as nobody is in danger, keep quiet. At least until you can think clearly instead of react. Your heart may be hammering so hard inside your rib cage that you think you’ll stroke out, but staying quiet instead of screaming helps, if you can do it. 🙂

Pay attention to your body’s signals. Do you clentch your fists when you are angry? Then when that begins, make a point of holding your hands open so that you can’t form a stress-fist. If you clamp your jaw or grind your teeth before a rage, make a point of keeping your jaw relaxed and slightly open. Do you get all red and hot? Put an ice cube on your forehead or in your mouth. You can close your eyes and breathe for a minute while you pray.

Doing these things could actually help you keep from doing something foolish while you work on an appropriate response to your child.

-Nealie

P.S. If you’ve never listened to an audio book and would like to try Audibles so you can listen to Chasing Lilly, here’s the link!

 

Mar 162018
 

Bruce and I were in a Burger King when Lilly was about twenty. While we waited in line she had her thumb in her mouth, simply because strangers were all around and she was nervous. An old gentleman was watching her and he said, “You know you shouldn’t have that thumb in your mouth. You’re putting germs from everything you touched in your mouth. No sir, you shouldn’t be doing that.”

Lilly removed the thumb. It’s a good thing for him that Lilly wasn’t agitated or he could have had a fist in his mouth, LOL!

When Lilly is disregulated, she doesn’t realize she’s sucking her thumb. When fearful and in public, I use a hand motion that brings what she is doing to her attention without embarrasing her. Other people don’t notice, but she takes the cue and removes the thumb. If she is agitated, I never tell her to stop the thumb-sucking, because we don’t like to see her get even more agitated and possibly out of control.

If you’re addressing a bad habit that your child has be careful that you:

Don’t ask them to accomplish something they are incapable of because they don’t have another way to cope.

Don’t address the bad habit during a time of duress. It’s pointless.

Don’t ever embarass them in any way.

Work on a secret signal between you and your child that is barely noticeable to others, and only use it when your kid is not greatly agitated.

I’d be interested to hear from other people about their situations and what they have successfully (or unsuccessfully) used.

 

Love my readers! -Nealie

 

Mar 022018
 

Lilly was a handful whenever we went ANYWHERE, but going to a restaurant was particularly challenging. She loved “McDannel’s,” and so McDonald’s was the place for some of our early outings with her.  It’s a relatively safe place to take a child with a tendency for wild rages. The best time of day for an outing with a child like that is about two or three o’clock, because the restaurant is not as busy.

Rehearse the rules ahead, and the main rule is that if there are any outbursts, “The food and drink go in the trash, and we go home.” Eating out is not a right, -it’s a privilege!

We actually did throw food and drinks in the trash receptacles and left the restaurant a bunch of times times before Lilly got the idea that we weren’t kidding.

One time we were at a sit-down restaurant and she was agitated that it was taking too long. She began to get loud and unruly, and when our meals came, I took her plate from the waitress and set it aside, out of Lilly’s reach. I said, “You may not get this. You can always have left-overs at home.”

If she wanted her food, she had no choice but to settle down, and she did.

And then there were the trips to the car when there was the beginning of a scene at a restaurant. It was hard work, and I am sure other people thought we were being mean to the cute little girl.

Lastly, make sure that you discuss what the child is allowed to order before you go in, and make sure you leave a good tip if it is a regular place with wait staff.

Lilly is polite when we go out to eat today because we stuck with it. Good luck with YOUR wild child.   😀  Nealie