Monday, April 28, 2008

2 kids=2 totally different RADs


I remember writing about the subtypes of RAD. Instead of doing the clinical jargon version I just want to point out how vastly different my 2 sons present their RAD. Older son is passive aggressive. He rarely says no but rarely complies. He says OK but then doesn't do it. He tries to spend all his time hiding in his room or doing activities that keep him away from me. He pretends not to know or understand things, but sometimes really doesn't. That is confusing. He refuses to work at school but can sit and stare into space for hours to keep from doing it. The only time he becomes confrontational is when we try to stop any of this behavior. Then all the anger he has bottled up inside comes out. Nothing is his fault. He does not agree with much of what I have to say. Our youngest son is like the Tasmanian Devil spinning through our house. He breaks much of what he touches. He is loud. He seeks confrontation, physical action and human touch. His anger is overt and EVERYONE is aware of it. I asked our attachment therapist and he said our younger son's presentation is much more common in his practice. I will say that while the younger sons is exhausting to deal with it has been much easier to treat. His crave for human touch has been our "in". Either way, as a parent, my reactions need to be the same. Eye contact, gentle touch, empathy, and attunement with their feelings. Tough stuff to do with a cyclone and a hermit but it can be done. "Never, never, never quit." Winston Churchill.


10 comments:

Coffee Bean said...

I've come up with another type of RAD. It is Really Angry Dad... and he comes out when the computer doesn't cooperate.

I think your blog is such a great resource and I love your calm spirit that comes through.

Bren said...

My daughter is much like your older son. Always acting compliant, but never following through. She loves to appear the victim. So sad. We are working through it!

Brenda said...

Coffee bean, you know it is funny people have always spoken of my calm spirit. I always figure everyone else feels just like me. I don't think it is any great deed on my part, just my personality.

Brenda said...

bren,

EXACTLY. The victim. We have found through neuropsych testing that our older son has many sensory dysfunction issues that are contributing this. Hopefully Occupational Therapy will help with this. He starts today.

Karen Deborah said...

I thought ALL kids acted like this. Bill Cosby says all kids are brain damaged. In my family they are. If I was little you could be my mom too. My mom's way of handling most of these situations was to just spank everybody.

Brenda said...

Karen Deborah,

Spanking isn't a good idea in a case where kids have been physicaly abused. Not saying I am against spanking. Spanking is not for kids with RAD.

Renee said...

Brenda - A presents more like your youngest.

I noticed you have translator on the sidebar. Too bad one of the options isn't RAD speak.

Brenda said...

Renee,

LOL. Funny. It would be a good idea. Why don't you invent one?

Bren said...

Kids with RAD want you to spank them. They can then feel even more a victim. It is difficult to change your parenting skills,especially after raising 2 boys (men) very successfully, but traumatized kids are immuned to consequences. They do nothing. Hard to fathom. When my boys were little they were anxious to please and fearful of getting in trouble. My daughter does not even think about the trouble as she is stealing or lying. It is of no consequence to her and I have actually seen her walk away with a smile on her face after getting a consequence dealt out. Her expresion said "Gotcha!"
I agree with Karen D. in part. All kids do most of what our kids do. The difference is our kids take it all to a new level. There is a normal, healthy level of rebellion (sin nature) in a child. A traumatized kid goes way beyond that level. Every parent of a traumatized child has heard from another mother..."That is normal...all kids do that." while we know it is not. Hard place to be as a mom and we often times come off looking "mean" while our kid gets to look the victim..."gotcha!"

Brenda said...

bren,

I agree 100 percent about spanking a child with RAD. I often hear "Oh all kids do that." And as you say, our kids do them to the extreme. If you look at the list of symptoms there a few things on there the most kids do. Our just do them obsessively.