Saturday, April 06, 2013


I had forgotten how completely exhausting having Sweetie home can be. We had our first over night visit today and she is trying her same old tricks. I knew this would be a trying visit. They have taken Sweetie off the Risperdol this week. I am glad they did! Not only did she gain 60 pounds on it, but it elevated her cholesterol and her liver enzymes. Now the trick will be finding what she can take that does not have those major side effects. The psychiatrist and therapist think she will have to be on a mood stabilizer. Yesterday she had a pretty significant episode while I was there for a therapy session that Sweetie was not involved in.
I was learning about play therapy and how to facilitate the play therapy sessions myself. Sweetie has never liked it much if I am in with the therapist and she is not. While I was in there, she had a major meltdown that included her running away from her mentor and having an order called to have her restrained. When the mentor went to restrain her she could see the terror that takes over Sweetie when someone is going to touch her when she is in one of her tantrums and decided to not do the restraint. She felt it would cause more trauma to Sweetie. I can agree with that from the one time I restrained her. It brought her right back to one of the bad moments in her life when she was being abused by her father.
Even though it was most likely my presence that brought on this event it was good that I was there to see first hand the process of how they debrief after. Everything that is done by the staff at the PRTF is to keep Sweetie safe, even if it is from herself. She doesn't have rational thinking when she is in one of her tantrums. Sequences of evens get jumbled and she does not pay attention to her surroundings. She easily could have been hit by a car when she darted up the middle of the road to get away from her mentor.
 This was the first time the PRTF has seen this out of Sweetie. I am glad she is starting to show her hurt self to them. She has been "honeymooning" for the last 6 weeks. It was starting to concern the therapist that she would not have enough documentation to keep her there longer than 6 months since she was not having major unsafe behaviors. The therapist has said that Sweetie is the most significant case of Reactive Attachment Disorder she has seen. And that she is worried that if she is discharged in 6 months that we may not get very far with her.  I am pretty sure that now that she has showed them that side of her that she will have no issues doing it more. And that will hopefully get her to be able to stay long enough to get the treatment she needs.
I had no idea how much constant stress I was under before she left until she came home today.
It made me think of a speaker that I really like to listen to Holly Van Gulden. She says if a frog jumps into boiling water, he immediately jumps out so that he will not die. But you can take that same frog and put him into a cool pot of water and slowly increase the temperature and the frog will not move and he will eventually boil to death. That is exactly how it was living with Sweetie from the beginning. The increase in behavioral issues was so gradual that it was really bad before we realized we had to do something. But now I have been out of that boiling water and it feels not right to jump back in. I won't jump back in like it is. Today showed that she really is not ready to come home yet. She can not handle the most basic of instruction with out an argument.
She intentionally tried to sabotage dinner, she tried to triangulate Cris and I . Both things were to create arguments. I wont go for it. I am sure that being back here makes her feel out of control and unsafe.
She has to try to regain that control so that she feels that she will not die. Even though I understand it, it is completely exhausting. It makes me doubt my ability to help here heal in the long run  I know I do not have a choice and I have to try. But I have doubt that I will make a difference. Is the damage that has been done, so grave that she may never recover? Will she ever be able to love me or anyone? Will she ever be able to truly feel safe? I pray she can.

1 comment:

  1. Loved your blog post!! One of our favorite songs too. What a special journey. Sending prayers from our family to yours!