After two years of hearing nothing but shit from Karen’s old therapist, it’s so great to have her again meeting with our original adoption social worker, and getting fantastic feedback that indicates that all our hard work has helped Karen become super self aware and very mature in her thinking.

A few months ago, the psychologist at Matan’s special education pre-school suggested he would benefit from working with someone on emotional issues that may be holding him back. We’ve always sensed that he enjoys being a baby, probably because he never got to enjoy a real baby-hood. After trying to work something out with the school resources, we finally decided to invest in having him see Ruti, our adoption social worker, the woman who helped us so much when we first brought Karen home, 5.5 years ago.

Matan took to her immediately. She’s a gentle, grandmotherly-like woman, who speaks slowly, clearly, and always knows how to talk to children at their level, whatever their level may be. He’s never been able to sit for more than 10 minutes on any craft project. His attention is usually diverted within minutes. She managed to sit with him first 20 minutes, and now 30 minutes. She works with him on a lot of tactile crafts that “feel good” in his hands. She has him wear old clothes so he can roll around in the finger paint if he wants to.

Karen accompanied him to a few meetings and enjoyed seeing Ruti again. She worked with Ruti during one year of pre-school, before we felt the need to up the ante, and move to a more intense clinical therapist. That may have been a mistake. In any case, Karen’s now in good place to really talk to Ruti, not just play. When we discovered that girls in her class were teasing her about being adopted, we mentioned to Ruti that if she felt Karen was interested in meeting with her to talk about it, we thought it would be good for her.

Karen was eager when we first mentioned it, and today had her first full meeting with Ruti. Wow. The feedback has been amazing. Ruti said that Karen often seems older than 8 in the way she expresses herself, and said she doesn’t remember working with another adopted child of Karen’s age who is so aware of her own fears, strengths and capabilities. Karen told her that she sometimes does mean things to others. She said she doesn’t want to be this way, and that she knows she can stop if she works hard enough at it. She said, she can achieve any goal if she puts enough effort into it! That’s a message almost directly out of my mouth.