Sunday, April 25, 2010

A RADish makes progress...

For those new here, RADish  is not a type of food I'm referring to.  RAD stands for Reactive Attachment Disorder in the medical field.  It is the one thing parents fear most I think in the adoption world.  Unfortunately, or fortunately(depending upon how you look at it), I have two children with this disorder.  This disorder is what causes many families to disrupt.  I won't lie, it is very difficult to deal with and it took us many years of successes, failures, ups, downs, etc. to get a real handle on RAD and what all comes with it.  Still don't know if we're doing it right but hey, if it works, we go with it.  RAD children can overcome much.  They have to.  Recently(this week), Yana wrote a letter to me.  I will copy it here, unedited, even down to the spelling and punctuation.  Here goes:

Dear Mom,

 Im really sorry for everything that I did this school year.  I do mean this because I love you so much mom!  You saved my life by bringing me to America the best country!  If it was not for you who knows what would happened to me.  Im sorry for lying to you about everything mom.  I should tell the trufe the first time like you say.  That is going to be my goal for this year! (lol)  I love you mom.  Love, Yana Boyd

There is much to say about this little note that came out of nowhere.  She actually feels remorse for what she did.  Still can't talk with me face to face much but this  note is huge progress for her.  Huge.  She actually said I love you!  Again, huge.  She recognizes that lying is wrong.  Though her lying was petty, for RAD kids, even the little things count and have to be dealt with.  Give them an inch and they take 10 miles.  So, we have the same punishments no matter what the lie is.  We have never said to any of them what would have happened had they stayed in Russia.  However, Yana was 8.5yo when we adopted her.  She had to have a pretty good idea of what would have happened to her had she stayed.  So, for her to express how she feels made my day.  I want to let folks know that there is indeed hope for a child suffering from RAD.  It may take years, but never give up.  This is the same child who has threaten to kill me in the past, hit me, punched me, kicked the walls in, etc.  You name it, she did it.  Now look.  Look at the love and the progress this child has made.  Just look at it.  She has taken it upon herself this year to imporve her grades.  She has asked on her own for extra credit and tutoring.  She is excelling in school now due to determination and motivation.  Teachers are impressed w/ academic progress.  So, very happy with it all.  Night and day from almost 5 years ago.  Parents of RAD kids, do not give up.  YOu can make it.  Because the day you have your daughter tell you she loves you (even if on paper) is worth all the heartache. 

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