Thursday, October 21, 2010


I am trying to roll with the punches with the boys right now as  there have been  lots of things going in the last 2 weeks. There have been holidays, birthdays and trauma anniversaries along with visitors and me going away for a weekend. My parents were here for 2 weeks and that is and of itself is stressful for them. As all of this is going on Fudge is continuing to work through the losses that he has experienced in his life and there have been some really stellar moments.

There is a part of me that understands what is going on for Fudge, I walked through it with Calvin, I held him while he raged it all out but Fudge is different and even though I am may understand on an intellectual level that is the only way I understand. I was not apprehended from my parents when I was 4. I was not let down by a mother who could put me ahead of her addictions. I was not rejected by a father who was unable to grow up enough to care for me or an extended family who refused to step up and raise me.

Fudge has every right to be angry, he has every right to mourn the losses he has experienced but parenting him through this time in his life is hard, it is past hard because I can see the pain he is and there is no way that I can make it better. I can not put a band-aid on it or speak to a bully and have him apologise. I can not heal this one for him, he has to go through it and I know that but, it is hard and as I watch him struggle I cannot help but wonder if working through his losses is going to be more than he can do. I wonder if it is going to impossible for him and make him into an angry and jaded person.

Fudge got in trouble for bullying this week, he was teasing a younger child on the bus rather relentlessly, Calvin and another child chimed in and they reduced the girl to tears. I know that it is not hard to make a 6 year old girl cry but when Fudge explained himself he told me that he was trying to make her angry. It is classic bully behaviour, I feel bad so I am going to make you feel bad too. It concerns that he is taking his anger out on other kids and it concerns me that it is younger kids and that he does not really seem to understand why we are so upset about it.

After P and I talked it out with him we commented on how differently this discussion with our children had gone. Nine or ten months ago Calvin would have been angry and defiant, he might of raged and there would have been little remorse on his part. Last night Calvin showed remorse, he understood why he was in trouble and Fudge was the angry, rude and defiant one. Fudge yelled, shouted and talked back, he let us know that he thought that we were crazy for being upset with him. He was clearly taking notes all those time that he watched Calvin get in trouble while he was acting angelic. It is growth on his part, expressing his anger is growing but as I have said it is really hard to parent him through this.

I am feeling more hopeful that we will work through it given some of the things that I have seen happening with him in the last few weeks since I really began to be concerned about what was going on with him. He has a lot to work through, I am still worried on many levels but I am more confident that he can get to a place where he has worked through his pain and can heal.


GB's Mom said...

Until he works through this, I am praying for you and thinking of you daily. It is so hard when they get stuck in that spot!

krlr said...

I do so very very fervently hope that you all can get to a better place.

Mama Drama Times Two said...

The fact that you are hopeful will bring him through this to even more growth. Soooo did you get any cool yarn on your trip????

BT said...

J - It is very interesting to me to follow your accounts of Fudge and Calvin. P started working through his losses in a huge way almost right as he turned 8. We had had rages before that, but the rages in the early months of his processing of his losses were off the charts. He also went through periods where he seemed to need to try to make others feel as miserable as he felt. We worked and worked and worked at helping him find words to express what he was feeling. Also gave him things that were permissible to punch -- pillows, beds, took him to a punching bag at the Y. As he's become better and better at articulating what he's feeling, he has become more honest (we talk constantly about emotional honesty -- expressing your honest emotion rather than some sort of deflection) and expressive. But this has led to countless tears. There is just sooooo much sadness that is there-- seemingly constantly -- beneath his surface. And it is so raw. It is extremely painful for me to know he feels this, to hear and see the expressions of it, and to feel so utterly helpless to take any of it away.

And then there is all the challenge of dealing with the behaviours that these boys engage in when they're in teh midst of those hard feelings. You can know that P's behaviours have gotten way less frequent. He now actively (and often) talks about having an awareness that he is exercising self-control (and he and we are so proud!).

So I would have hope if I were you. I think you are doing all the right things (and I know I did not!), and Fudge himself, like P, seems to be willing to work at it. P is not turning out jaded, mean, cynical, or any of those things. He is one extremely sweet and genuinely good-in-his-core-character boy. I am very optimistic for you with both Calvin and Fudge.

Another variable that I can never help wondering about: length of time with you. P seemed to almost flip a switch this summer right as he hit the mark of having been with us for the same amount of time that he hadn't been with us, even though we never even mentioned that benchmark to him.