Sunday, July 12, 2015

Self Sabotage, RAD Symptom #4

Self Sabotage: to inflict self harm or abuse ones body or possessions.

Children with RAD view themselves as bad and unlovable. This belief is based on their reasoning that there must be something wrong with them, otherwise mom/dad wouldn't have "given them up, got rid of them, abused or neglected them" etc.

This belief works wonder's when they are enduring abusive situations or when they need to come up with an explanation about why they are in foster care. But when this child who honestly believe's he is a bad person, is  confronted with love it goes against all of his beliefs. Even worse he has to confront the thought that perhaps his parents were the ones who had done wrong. This is an inconceivable idea, one that doesn't stand a chance in most children's brains'.

  When Braden received a gift he was all smiles for a few moments, then the anger came. He felt he didn't deserve a gift because he was bad so he would break or tear his gifts. Anger felt safer than the vulnerability he endured when someone gave him something.

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Sticker charts do not work for a child with RAD because they will make sure they do not reach their goal. They do this because they are certain they are bad people. Braden's MT was certain a sticker chart was the answer even though I tried to tell her it wouldn't work. In the end I made a chart and divided it into three sections morning, afternoon and evening. The idea was to have Braden place a sticker on his chart when he did a good job obeying and being cheerful. Sometimes I forgot about that chart but not Braden. If he did happen to have a good day, he always acted out in some way just before it was time to put a sticker on the chart. He never earned a sticker although, I was so determined to have him succeed that I lowered the standards substantially so it was almost guaranteed he would win. Without fail, he always proved what he believed, he was no good and didn't deserve good things.
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