I just came across this article and it is spot on. It’s fairly long, but is awesome information to go over with your school, your kid’s teachers, assistants, and anyone that has regular contact with your child in school. It explains their behaviors very well, the whys behind it, and supports the parents.
The Attachment Disordered Child and School
Oh yeah, and it’s from The Institute for Attachment & Child Development, and some something you’ve written down and sent to the teacher/principal. After all, you’re “just” the parent, what could “you” possibly know about child-rearing and your child in particular? (shaking head) Or maybe your child is in a good school and they actually listen to you and respect what you have to say. If that’s the case, hurray! and here’s more info to give them. I like how it explains things out in layman’s terms and details the common behaviors in school vs. home.
I kind of laughed while I was reading this, because I was in the middle of the passive-aggressive portion of the article when my attachment challenged child went into the living room and started watching a show his older brother had requested to watch… something maybe a bit old for him, maybe not, but certainly something he needed to ask if he could watch, since it wasn’t on “their” tv (which is locked down six ways from Sunday as far as channels go). I said that he needed to ask before watching that program with his brother. In typical form, rather than just ask right then if he could watch it (the answer would have been yes), he got up and went back into the playroom and turned on cartoons. That’s such a typical example of “You’re not in control of me”. Passive-aggressive, not in your face defiant, but I am certain that will be added to his list of infractions he keeps in his mind and he will “get even” later, even if later is a year from now (providing he hasn’t made a breakthrough by then).
We are lucky that his teacher is on board with us and does everything we suggest (like not repeated warnings, not buying into the “poor me” crap, victim thing he plays at school so much). I had hoped that it meant he would do well this year, because instead of spending the first part of the year charming the teacher, playing the little games, then seeing how much he could get away with and upping the ante every week, so by the end of the school year the teacher is pulling her hair out and calling me every day (even though she’d been warned!), I thought that maybe if the teacher was on board from the get-go, and his little charm games didn’t work, that maybe he’d focus on the work. It’s halfway through the school year and I can say this year, with this child and where he’s at emotionally/mentally, it’s been a failure. He’s not the biggest or worst behaved child in his class (usually by this point in time, he really pours on the juice). So for me, that’s a win. For his teacher, OMG, that poor person! But academically, he’s not doing well at all. He “can” do well, as a lot of our kids are, he’s quite bright intellectually, but thinks he knows everything and has no need to learn what they are teaching him in school. Some days he does above his grade level, other days, it’s like his first day in this country not understanding the language. And I’ve watched it long enough to know it’s not based on events, things happening at home, traumaversaries, none of that. It’s something he turns on and off at will. And he can even verbalize that.
I’m not sharing all this with you for any other reason except to commiserate with you. Same boat, we’re in, rowing as hard as we can to get to the other side, but a bunch of jerks on a speedboat named Trauma keeps throwing us off course!
Hang in there.