Monday, October 29, 2007

Attachment Therapy

I know those of us with children who have RAD talk about Attachment therapy often. I realize that some of you are not familiar with that. So I thought I'd tell you a little about it. In a normal cycle of attachment a baby has a need, cries, the need is met by the caregiver, trust develops. Above is a copy of the cycle when RAD develops. In regular therapy, which we tried quite a few times with several people, the child meets with the therapist alone and talks about their current behavior and feelings. In Attachment therapy (AT) the mother stays with the child and the therapist. The very first thing our AT did was explain the above cycle. How it should have been. What it was probably like. He explained to them why they are afraid to love, trust and do not feel safe. They see love as a dangerous, scary feeling. They also know that mother's represent love. So therefore all mothers are dangerous and scary. The AT then spends a great deal of time (months) trying to separate the birth mom's behavior from THIS mom. R has understood that difference and "gets it". A is not there yet. The AT explains that it is like they are in a hole all alone where they feel safe. We are all outside the hole trying to get them to come out. Their behavior is as offensive as possible in an effort to keep us away. We are working as parents, AT, and EMDR therapist all together to get them to come out of that hole. At the very top of today's blog is a photo our AT has shared with us of a boy in the hole. I think it is scary. It is so much fun having R out of the hole and with us. We are anxiously awaiting A's healing.


Denise said...

Whoa!!! That photo is SCARY!! One of the hardest things for me to make sense of is why they wouldn't see that outside the hole is so much happier and brighter. It's been explained, but for someone who doesn't suffer from RAD, I think it's difficult to comprehend. Great information though - and very well said.

Brenda said...

I don't like that photo. The first time he showed it to me I didn't even want to look at it. I've seen it several times now and decided that if that is the ugliness of where my child lives I need to look at it. It doesn't make sense because their lives did not make sense. The things their birth parents did do not make sense. So they are comfortable in that world. Our world does not make sense to them and does not appear to be safe.

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