Monday, March 10, 2008

Lack of Eye Contact/RAD

Lack of Eye Contact: Eye contact when communicating is a form of connection and intimacy. Our children with RAD cannot handle that level of intimacy so they avoid it. The only time they look you in the eye is if they are demanding something, lying to you, enraged or staring you down. It is good to encourage eye contact but we must be very careful. If they have done something wrong and we say "LOOK AT ME" and glare at them it only makes things worse. Any time we try to make eye contact our eyes must reflect love and acceptance. So if you cannot reflect that then it is time for you to take a time out until you can. Go in the bathroom, a quick walk around the block, or just go in your room for a few minutes and pray. When you are ready come back and try again. Do not get down on their eye level. In their minds that puts you on the same level as them. They do not need to see you as weaker. They need to see you as strong. So stay standing and look at them. Eye contact is one of the easier things to work on as long as you are consistent. Once they can make eye contact with you, then it is time to encourage them to look other people in the eye. That is a little tougher since you are not around them. You can practice greeting people and talking with people at home and show them how it is done. Their people skills are weak. See also the post on transitions as it has some bedtime eye contact ideas. Have a great healing day!

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