Saturday, 29 December 2012

The damaged child...

I was listening to Radio 4 the other day, and caught bits of a programme about abusers and abused children. I don't remember every detail, but one thing that sticks was that a child who is abused, either verbally or physically has different brain development from one who is cherished and cared for. And that constant shouting can affect brain development.

OD has always held that SD2 is a challenging child because of constant negative feedback from her mother ( i.e. THAT woman). I've always remained fairly neutral on that stance, as I don't have her side of the story. She does like shouting though, as the only contact I have had with her, is hearing her shout at him or the children down the telephone.

SD2, who is 13 has been incredibly difficult over the last month. She has periods of obviously trying to be nice, and then has a complete meltdown. On our transposed Christmas Day, the 23rd, OD has a tradition of one of the children lighting the candle, to "let baby Jesus know that he is welcome in this house". He'd already said that SD3 could light it, when SD2 arrived and started kicking up a fuss, saying that it was her turn. It culminated in her shouting "F*ck this...", and running up to her room. I made the mistake of trying to reason with her, and was subject to a kicking, spitting, screaming child...much like a toddler having a tantrum. Only this "toddler" is taller than I am. After the tantrum ran its course, OD spoke to her, and she did apologise ...but the day was rather spoiled.

She was in a touchy mood when we left for France, because she'd misplaced her coat. Unfortunately, her habit of being messy and throwing things about does lead to things going missing. She does however, have a nasty habit of accusing everyone around her of having stolen/moved her things and lashing out. She'd calmed down by the time we got to France, but again had a hissy fit after she was asked to put her things away. This time, there were threats of.."If you don't let me have what I'll be behaviour will be even worse..&*&**&&^%^&......". OD had to win that power battle, but it was extremely difficult to stand back and not do anything while she was kicking and punching him, and finally ripped the pocket of his favourite jacket. (As an aside, it's my least favourite green...really?!...!).

She's since apologised and has been nicer....but it doesn't strike me as normal behaviour. There has been mention of a behavioural psychologist..but it's rather like living with an active volcano, waiting for it to erupt.

Fun and games!

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