Showing posts from October, 2016

A day in the life

Today, one of our new Social Workers (the lovely one who is carrying out our assessment of need) emailed to say she needs to include something about the emotional impact all of this is having on our family, what a typical day is like, and the reality of parenting Tickle.

Here is my reply:
Hi Lovely Social Worker,
OK I'll do my best..! It's not always easy to talk about I think, because if we stopped to admit quite how much of an impact it is having on us it would be too overwhelming and we'd struggle to get going again! I think most of our daily life at the moment is gritting our teeth and getting on with it.
A typical day would be Tickle waking around five, when he will come in to our room and ask dad to come back to bed with him as he's scared on his own. Sometimes he wakes in the night but will usually accept being settled back to sleep, though any time after about 4.30 he's unlikely to go to sleep again. Husband will stay with him, sometimes listening to …

A story about a Policeman

Yesterday, we had a visit from a Policeman. On the whole, it probably went about as well as it could have done, not withstanding the fact that 'it went well' is about the least appropriate way of describing it. Perhaps 'it went smoothly' is better.

The Policeman was very nice. Softly-spoken, reserved, but happy to get his nice suit down on to our slightly grubby floor and put cars down the slide with Tickle. He asked Tickle a couple of questions like "How do you spell Tickle" [he had no idea] and "When is your birthday" [got the month, no idea about the date] as a fairly rudimentary indication of Tickle's level of comprehension. He also asked whether Tickle would like to tell him about the things that happened to him at his other house that had made him feel sad and worried. Much to my astonishment, it seemed that Tickle did want to tell him. He didn't say much, just one brief but illuminating sentence, then he sort of... folded up, like he …

More crazy

Our tough time is continuing. Since Tickle made his disclosures his emotions have been consistently heightened; he's scared of everything, all the time. He'll wake up any time between 3am and 5am, and will be too scared to stay in his own bed, so either Husband or I will take a duvet and try and kip on his bedroom floor until about 6, when we really can't contain him any more. If he wakes earlier he will sometimes go back to sleep (though will wake instantly if we dare to leave the room) but after about 4.30 it's basically a write-off and it's just about keeping him quiet and calm. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes I worry he's going to wake the whole neighbourhood screaming at the top of his lungs.

This is every day, by the way.

Once we give in and let him get up, he's reasonably OK for 45 mins or so while he's playing and having his breakfast. Sometime towards the end of breakfast the eyes will start to glaze over, the head will …

World Mental Health Day

Today is World Mental Health Day; the irony of this is not lost on me as I am yet to force myself out from under the duvet. I've struggled with my mental health periodically since I was a teenager, but then, I really don't think I know anyone who hasn't. (Though I do know people who haven't admitted it...) For me it's particularly linked to my menstrual cycle. There are certain days of the month where I just don't function properly. I have one very strong memory of being a teenager, curled up in a ball on my bedroom floor, sobbing, knowing that although this would all pass within a few days, it was just going to come back again next month.

I am struggling a bit (a lot) at the moment. I can force myself to do the essentials - get the kids fed and to ballet class on time, any urgent work deadlines, chasing up the latest referrals we are yet to hear from - but until I'm needed to do those things mostly I just stare out of the window, or read mindless novels to…

One week on

Its been one week since the disclosure that changed everything, and nothing. Everything, because it finally confirmed what we had been suspecting for months and pushed us across the line from 'what we think we can cope with' to 'what we really can't cope with'. Nothing because... nothing has changed. We still haven't heard from the police, haven't got the extra support in place, and feel totally in limbo - waiting for something to happen but not quite sure what.

I do know that in real life it takes time to get stuff sorted out, but for us at the moment every day is like a huge looming mountain to climb. (That's what it feels like to me, anyway; Husband seems to be very stoically getting on with it.) From the moment Tickle goes to bed at night I almost dread him waking up. I'm anxious around him, on edge because you never know when he might decide to tell us something else. My brain re-plays the video of his disclosures whenever it gets a quiet momen…

Dear God there's more...

This post was supposed to be all about the meeting we had yesterday, and what we are doing to move forward, and I will get to that but I am in shock because there is more. It seems that the damn has opened and Tickle, having discovered it's good to talk, now wants to keep doing it. I'm struggling to find the words... been staring at the computer screen for at least ten minutes trying to work out what to say.

I'm not sure that this will change anything in terms of what happens next - I will have to report it to the social workers obviously, who will go back to the police again. We are starting to do a bit of preparation work with Tickle about talking to the police - trying to explain who they are and what they do, as at the moment he just thinks they go nee-naw nee-naw. So far I have told him that the police are there to help people who feel worried and sad, and that they are they for when adults make 'bad choices' (a phrase he has picked up from school) in the same…

Putting the brakes on

I wasn't quite sure how to title this post, as we're dealing with something pretty immense at the moment, and it's kind of hard to know where to start with writing about it.

I wrote in my last blog post about being rushed in to applying for the Adoption Order, but how I was ready to move on, for Husband and I to have control over our own decisions for our own family. However we've just spent the last week discussing whether we should ask for an adjournment.

We had so many plans for where we were going to get our support from post-Adoption Order, and in the last week or so every single one of those plans has completely disintegrated.

1) We had asked about 6 months ago for a referral to our local CAHMS service, to see if they could help us to unpick which parts of Tickle's behaviour were actually due to the trauma and abuse he has suffered, and therefore whether he would benefit from play therapy. This got bounced straight back, with an accompanying note saying we ne…