Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Identifying the cause.

Putting your finger on an ailment of a child who has spent the better part of her life with serious sickness is not easy. Ainsley on the other hand is more transparent. Every time she doesn't want to do something she says her tummy hurts or that she feels sick. When she is truly sick she throws up. When she is finished throwing up she is not sick anymore. It is simple and clear cut. By the way, she is finished throwing up - complete recovery to twerptitude.

Sydney, on the other hand, is a far more sophisticated faker that was mastered her technique through years of first-hand, hard-earned experience. Lately, these occurrences of "sickness" or "extreme pain" have been more common. The trick for us is to figure out what is real and what is motivated by some deep-seated desire for more attention, emotional support, or for whatever it is that she is looking for.

Whenever one of these episodes raises its ugly head I am always looking for the root cause. As of late I know that she is going through some changes. For example, one of her frustrations is with Miss Claudia. Miss Claudia has some different rules than Mommy and Daddy do. These rules are for good reason and they give Claudia adequate control of the children so that she can manage them. Her rules are like ones you would see in a school. You have to ask to go to the bathroom. You can't go running willy nilly through the halls. You can't leave the room whenever you want to. You can't go into the back yard by yourself without the rest of the kiddos. You see, all reasonable requests for someone that has been charged with caring for several of you kiddos. She assumes some liability to ensure there safety. We certainly get it. Sydney does not. She thinks they are "baby rules." We, of course, support Claudia's rules and Sydney finds it unfair that we are not taking her side. Coincidentally ,it seems to also coordinate with Sydney's spells of sickness and gross injury.

The trick is proving it. How do we know it is this and not neuroblastoma? What are the tools that we parents have to get to the bottom of it? I knew I should have studied more psychology in college. Regardless, last night I tried talking to her directly about it. We will see what today holds. Any ideas?

Purposefully scheming.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have been reading your site for sometime now and enjoy your insights immensely. As a former social worker and mother of two twerps (10 and 13) I suggest that you talk to Sydney about what "not feeling good" means and then tell her that "not feeling good" means laying down and taking it video activity...just resting like she did when she was little. If she is faking it, she will want to run and play....she will not want to lay down. Also, since she is the oldest, you may want to consider some bending of the rules. Children have to be able to start using their own judgements to make their own decisions...since Syndey is older she shouldn't be allowed to go outside by herself without telling someone (especially with a pool) but she should be able to do other things somewhat unattended (like play with her dolls in her room by herself).
I laugh and worry along with you and your journey trhoughout twerpdom. After spending none years trying to have some twerps of my own, I appreciate them for their wonderful idiosyncrasies. Your blog makes me appreciate them more.