Friday, February 15, 2013

A Swing and A Miss

By:  Marc Deprey

In my last entry, I listed a number of potential subjects to talk about on this blog and of course, I’ve decided not to talk about any of them today. I just want to talk about the heartbreak of never really being close to your kid.

For those who have normal kids (without trauma) along with their kids with trauma, I have a certain envy. Seems to me having something is better than not having it at all (unless you’re talking about a disease or something). Our two kids are both afflicted pretty deeply with trauma they experienced before we adopted them. They are blood brother and sister and are only 11 months apart.  But they are not far apart on the level of developmental disarray they display with us. We’ll never know what its like to have a kid who is isn’t explosive, inflexible, and mean. I’m not sure it’s a better bargain to have tasted the better stuff, when most of your meal is going to pretty nasty. But I do envy the experience of closeness that I think most other parents seem to have with their kids.

Maybe I’m assuming too much when I say that, but it’s hard to feel good about being a parent to these kids. The specter of being a bad parent always looms over you when you have no other example of doing a “good job”. I know I’m doing a good job by the way, but it doesn’t always feel good. If I had a parental relationship with a normal child would that help? Sometimes it feels as if that would be an oasis in a very dry desert. But for us with only RAD kids, there isn’t an oasis. Its just sand, sand, and sand (with a frequent windstorm.) I’d like to hear from other parents who have both normal kids and traumatized kids what they think. I guess it’s a grass-is-always-greener thing, but it gnaws at me that I’m not very close to my kids and I really don’t think I ever will be.

I guess that isn’t the Dad they need. But maybe it’s the Dad I want to be and can’t.

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