Sometimes I get frustrated because I don't know how to respond to Piney's behavior.
M always says, "Just do your best."
But I don't know what my best is because I don't know what the best response is.
He says, "Just handle it like you handled the boys at her age."
But there are many problems with that. For one, I can't remember our boys doing what she does- they might have, but it was too long ago for me to remember- and I certainly don't remember how I responded. Also, I don't know if she is acting out due to adoption/institution related issues or if she is just going through a normal phase and I shouldn't worry about it. Furthermore, I don't know if she should have a different response than a child who hasn't had her type of past.
So let's just take a look at what is going on.
I pick her up from school and she has pooped in her pants again.
Did I mention that she has been in the 3 year old class for over a month now? This is the class where you are supposed to be totally potty trained. She was staying dry in her 2 year old class for a long time, so they graduated her.
Now, she is reverting. When I ask her why she pooped in her underwear she usually responds with I forgot, or I was too tired, I didn't want to or something that shows she simply chose to not go.
But it doesn't stop there. I also get a note saying the following:A boy in Piney's class was bending down to pick up a toy he dropped and when he was bent over Piney kicked him in the face. She would not apologize and said she didn't do it even though the teacher saw it happen.
When I asked her about it she said she didn't do it, and instead what happened is that Santa Claus was punching her in the face again.
As I have written before, Piney has been a model student. I never heard anything but praises. However, lately I have been getting some kind of bad report daily.
Later on at home....
I have asked Piney several times to stay out of the fridge. I tell her that if she comes to me and tells me that she is hungry I will make something for her. She refuses to listen to this. So, I often find partially eaten fruit in the fridge. I worry about this because the fruit has not been washed.
But yesterday took the cake.
I told her that it was time for bed. She didn't want to go to bed, so as I attended to some things with the boys she snuck into the kitchen, opened the fridge and got out a jar of chocolate syrup. She took off the lid and stuck her hands in it and started eating as much as her little hands could hold. She got chocolate all over her face, hands, clothes, the floor and the fridge. The dirty chocolate jar would have to be tossed now.
I came in to put her to bed and I was dumbfounded. I felt like I had just left her out of my sight for 5 minutes at the most. She looked at me with the guiltiest look you have ever seen. She knew that what she had done was wrong.
I did not know how to respond. Usually we spend a nice time together when I put her to bed.
We read stories, we make the bed up with the right stuffed animals, etc. But after cleaning her and everything up I just couldn't get myself to do that. I didn't yell or get mad, my mind was racing as to what to do, how to handle it and I didn't know.
It felt like she needed some kind of consequence. I knew from past experience that she does not listen to me when I just ask her nicely to stay out of the fridge. I did not know what to do.
Our solution: I told her that I was unhappy with her choice to get into the fridge and M put her to bed because I just couldn't do it.
I feel like I need to address these behavior problems, but I am at a loss because she is still very needy and very insecure.
Any advice would be appreciated.
Labels: adoption: difficult child behaviors