I thought parenting preschool children with past trauma, attachment issues, and FASD was difficult. The tantrums, lying, hitting, swearing, signs of attachment disorder, and dealing with the foster and adoption system just about broke me. But the love for my children grew. I had hope that we could break through the attachment disorders and my children could learn to love, and live within a family. We had support from an awesome social worker and therapist. It was the hardest time, yet it was the best time.
I learned so much, and my youngest two settled into a pretty peaceful state in elementary school. Life wasn't perfect, but it manageable. I could see great gains in my children. My son stopped hitting me and learned to control his anger. My daughter, though she struggled with school, was showing her awesome ability to nurture both dogs and babies. Yes, there were little adjustments that had to be done, but I became an expert on seeing the beginnings of problems before they became worse. I really thought we would be the exception in the discouraging stats of fetal alcohol. My children were doing so well!
Then came adolescence. Our therapist warned us that we may have to begin therapy again when my kids hit the teenage years, but I half believed her. Our family was strong, we learned so much, and we could handle any teenager. I was so wrong. Last night at a group therapy session, I realized that I had to teach my daughter again to love and learn to be a part of the family. But this time is harder. It is natural for teenagers to spread their wings and become less attached with the family. My daughter is pushing us away from her, yet her wings are broken. How do I help her to grow, yet not be a danger to herself or others?
I really don't know. I guess that's why we are at therapy again.