Some days it feels like nothing’s changed. I’ve removed K from her afterschool program after she continued to have behavioral problems. Instead of getting better, her behavior seemed to get worse when we tried several changes to accomodate her there. I think she felt that the changes were rejections, and so things got worse. Luckily, I can have her in an alternate program by next week, but it brings back home the issue of her inability to control her impulses.
Just as I’m digesting the changes I’ll have to make as a result of the childcare issues, I receive notice from her teacher that she hit two of her friends at school. She claims it was “friendly”, but the girls are afraid of her, so clearly, it’s not.
True, she no longer exhibits the level of violence of last year, but she still pushes, and hits on occasion. She usually explains it as a misunderstanding. She didn’t mean to hit, she meant just to “lightly touch”. We’ve told her over and over again that she’s lost the benefit of the doubt, and there should be NO touching anyone else, for any reason. Then again, I see all the kids pushing and shoving, and feel sorry for K, because she feels she’s only doing what other kids do. She fails to realize two things:
1. She’s much stronger than the average child, and what may feel like a light push to her, is actually a forceful shove to someone else, and
2. She has an angry streak that scares people. When she gets really angry, even if she doesn’t raise her hands, she is capable of saying some really awful things to other people, both children and adults. In any case, she’s mastered the art of scaring people. It’s almost funny how no one at home is afraid of her. Even Matan loves playing with her, and shows no fear, even when they fight.
She has such a keen understanding of these issues, and keeps telling me that she is controlling her behavior, it’s just that she’s misunderstood. I so want to believe her, but I know that she simply loses control and has no valid explanation. She insists she has control, even when I show her that she clearly does not. I do think she understands, but that she’s afraid of her own lack of self control. If anything, Karen is a control freak, and hates not to be able to accomplish what she’s set out to do. Often she has to reject something in order to let go of going for perfection.
The horseback riding didn’t work out. The fall sort of put an end to it. She’s afraid to go back. Now I’m considering emotional therapy with the help of small animals. I’m also considering a new therapist, one with whom we’ve spoken before. I liked her and I think it will be a more positive environment than we had with the last one. We’re also looking at some sort of workshop to help her with social skills. I’ve heard of two that sound ok, but I’m trying to hold off until summer when she has fewer activities.
People who meet her often report a charming and intelligent young lady. She can sound very mature when she so wishes, and enjoys holding conversations with adults. She’s capable of being extremely polite when she’s trying to make a good impression. She knows how to behave, she just can’t always control her impulses.