We almost had a great day yesterday but Patches was determined to ruin it for herself. She loves the TV and will often try to spend all her waking hours in front of one. I am constantly trying to find ways to keep her away from it. We put a TV in the girls' room quite a while ago but they are only allowed to turn it on Friday and Saturday nights. She sneaks in there and watches it every time I turn around. Friday she fell asleep in the afternoon doing it and so yesterday I made it my mission to keep her occupied. After swimming the girls were changing their suits and she turned it on. Emma (a bit whiny and bossy on a good day) informed her she wasn't allowed and reached to turn it off. Patches grabbed her arm, twisted it hard enough to leave a large red mark for several hours, and shoved her to the ground while screaming in her face. Lovely. I tended to Emma and quietly told Patches she had lost the TV for the rest of the weekend and for each time I caught her on it she would lose an additional day. She apologized and promised to find other things to do to entertain herself. ROFLMAO! You know better than that. She screamed for about 3 hours about how much she hated me and when she didn't get a response from me she began her letter writing assault. I received 6 letters, 4 were all about how much and why she hated Emma and myself, the other 2 were death threats and details of what she wanted to do to me. Good times.
Eventually, I made a wrong move thinking she had calmed enough to discuss her threats and she punched me. I held her arms tight for a minute explaining that she had a choice to make, it was one thing to me nasty to me and another to attack me physically. I got up and left the room. A few more minutes of her screaming and I told her to move it to the porch. She did but began screaming she was going to kill her self and run away. In an anger induced lapse of judgement, I suggested she choose between those options and let me know. I assume she decided to run away to the ditch in our front yard b/c that is where my DH found her when he came home.
Then I did something that I do not suggest anyone else do. It worked for us but if it didn't you would do damage to your child that you may never be able to fix. I informed all the kids that I would be giving Patches a dose of her own medicine. They were to believe nothing that I said and be truthful when I asked them anything in front of her. Patches entered the house and refused to join us at the table for the best Chili Cheese Fries ever. I made several comments about hating Patches b/c she hates me and that must be what she wanted. When I asked her to put her book bag up she said some horrible things to me that I brushed off and explained that since I hated her her opinion about me didn't matter. She went over the deep end and told me to call DFCS to get her. I continued as long as I felt I had things under control and explained that she has been adopted and DFCS is no longer involved. I showed no emotion and just responded to her many complaints, assuring her that I felt the same way she did, she was not my real child and I was not her real mother. When the tears began to fall I asked the kids to tell her what, if anything, I had told them before she came back in. They all jumped at the chance to inform her that I was tricking her. I had told them all to remain calm while I lied to her about my true feelings, she was my real dd and I loved her no matter what she did. I could see she was relieved and she began making eye contact when asked. After a couple of minutes I suggested a warm shower to cry it out and a snuggle after. I waited until she was in and sent Cyr up to talk to her. (Patches is completely safe with Cyr b/c Patches will beat anyone that tries to sit next to her if she feels threatened) Cyr has to be forced to show empathy and make any effort to help anyone. I actually gave her words to use, it is that bad. It helped a lot and when Patches came down to snuggle she told me Cyr helped her calm down. We rocked and talked about what we both said. I reassured her that I really love her and need her in my life, she is my real child and no amount of acting out will change that. She agreed she knew that and she has been fine since. She now knows how awful it feels to hear someone tell you they hate you.
Her and I have had to go down this road about other hateful things she used to do. I feel she is attaching in her own very slow way and I do not think this has done any damage. She is one of the few kids that needs to feel something before it clicks, none of my other children need it like this. She has made huge progress with this type of "back in your face" response at a very calculated time. I am sure she will not do that to me again, she will find new and more interesting ways to torture me.
On another note, someone has accidnetly locked the girls' bedroom door. Ruthie, Michael, and Ella are very concerned that they will never get back in there. I am such a prankster, I told them that they could sleep in the barn. If you could have seen their eyes, they were huge. They are all scrambling now to open the door. The best part is that Michael locks his door all the time and I have a "key" that opens it. They should know better. This should be fun....