Tag Archives: frustration

Antsy? Not ‘Arf!

12 Nov

No one person’s problems are any greater or lesser than our own, since fundamentally everything is relative!

My ‘tough shit’ is written here….in this little padded cell in cyberspace that I’ve claimed for myself, yet share publicly. This space is my psychiatrist’s couch. It’s where I lie; it’s where I spew guff; it’s where I whingebag my way through life; it’s my space to say what I like when I like and drink as much virtual gin (my new tipple of choice: Brockman’s Gin – Try it!!) as I like without having to suffer the intoxicating after-effects.

Right now, I am feeling frustrated. We’ve hit somewhat of an impasse in the Permanently Pickled Household. And I’m buggered if I know which way to turn.


Actually, to be honest, I’m feeling downright fecked off, Dr. T’internoob!

I lay awake last night pondering the TAC meeting that we had a couple of months ago. Going over what was said, what wasn’t said. Going over how I personally felt in the meeting.

Feeling the defensiveness and sensitivity rising up and overwhelming me and having to bottle it up while the professionals battled over who has more experience, who can blind who with their semantics, and who has the busier diary! And all I wanted to scream was this is a child, a child who doesn’t understand compliance once his mist descends, a child who will not conform to the ideals of your theory books!

Listen to me! But I stayed quiet for fear of being the inflexible, irate and witless harpy that I invariably am these days.

I listened to them preach to me about healthy eating, exercise, and yes….rewards and consequences (was that an audible scoff from the adoption community??). I was asked about my parenting and about how we are helping to control Pickle’s weight.


I. Am. Frustrated. I have been festering on this for weeks.

Can you tell, I’m frustrated?

We had a brilliant summer in terms of Pickle’s behaviour this year. Given the huge changes that took place prior to the summer and during this summer, this was somewhat of an achievement.

Grandma passed away after a long illness. He was a rock. As ever, we were unable to predict his exact response. But this time he shone. Or had we raised our game of patience? Probably both.

Prior to the end of the last school term, Pickle was removed from his ‘mainstream’ class and placed unofficially in the Moderate Learning Difficulties division. Unofficially because he doesn’t have an EHCP. He has taken the non-existent 11th place in a class of 10!

I will be completely candid. On being notified of Pickle’s move to the MLD division, I was beyond gutted! I broke my heart crying and felt like I had let him down. There is no doubt that there is an underlying capability that will allow him to do well in mainstream education. But his hypersensitivity and hypervigilance make it difficult for him to concentrate, to relax, to function, to co-exist with others without eagle-eyed adults pre-empting his every move.

He is followed around the playground!! This week he attempted to escape the playground. As would I if I were faced with such totalitarian constraints.

Not long before his transition to the MLD I had been posting about how well he was doing. So well in fact that the TAC team had decided to cut back on the meetings. We were spending our time discussing his achievements as opposed to any negative issues.

So what happened? I have my theories, I know my child. I had a plethora of information in my head that helps me understand what is going on for him. I have the supportive words of many other adopters, carers and birth parents going through similar issues. But to lambast at this stage is not going to move things forward.

Over the summer, we had our first meeting with CAMHS and Pickle has subsequently undergone the QB test for ADHD. We still don’t have the results!


We have purported referrals for speech and language, the educational psychologist, and occupational health.


He has seen a physiotherapist for his gait, though we have had no feedback from her supposed visit to school, of which the school have no record.


I am still awaiting the minutes from the TAC meeting. As well as the TAC plan and its concomitant timescales.


I’m sure you get the general gist of how I’m feeling!!! And, to boot…I’m at an age when you really shouldn’t be messing with my tolerance levels. Even my see-sawing hormones are frantically trying to escape my crabby body.


So here I sit, weltering in my cul-de-sac, with my Brockman’s gin and current malignant loathing of the system, planning which of my prey to attack first!



Jolly Routine

12 Apr

We have a family villa in Spain that Pickle has now been to 3 times. Each time his behaviour has, without doubt, improved.

The first time we boarded a plane as a foursome was just 4 months after he moved in with us. It was against the advice of social workers and how right they were. It was too soon to subject him to such a drastic change in routine, albeit a short-term one. It didn’t matter how much we explained that we would be returning home and that we would all stay together forever. The words ‘home’ and ‘forever’ meant nothing to him. How could they?

The days of that first holiday were at best filled with full-blown, shoe-lobbing tantrums. Door-kicking became the favourite sport along with long-distance, over-the-table spitting. The only blessing was that the inhabitants of the local Spanish village were quite obviously baffled by his intricate use of the English language. The empathetic smiles seem to translate universally, however. I found the aviator shades invaluable for avoiding eye contact, hiding embarrassment and masking the unavoidable watery eyeballs.

We’ve moved on leaps and bounds since then. Of course, his constant need for security is ever prevalent.

Once again, our jolly holiday in Spain – although jollier – was not as jolly as it could have been. Pickle was thrown backwards again with this latest change in his routine His inappropriate bravado and insolence bounced on the surface blanketing his fears and apprehension.

To those who loosely know Pickle, he is the bubbly, less-than-reticent cutie pie with eyelashes like palm fronds. His unconcealed affection, though ridiculously charming and lovable, is uncharacteristic of what you would expect from the average child/almost-stranger relationship. But to a child to whom strangers have always been introduced as ‘friends’ or ‘trusted adults’ (social workers, family finders, contact centre workers), his open friendliness could be considered somewhat understandable. Those who know him more intimately are aware that his terrified interior is in fact just playing out a rather brash, swaggering external role. It’s perplexing, testing and extremely wearisome.

Ashamedly, patience isn’t always the first thing to jump to the fore when his impertinent manners surface. I get frustrated, I over-analyse, I want to scream. In all honesty, I often do. Then I go away and kick myself for my lack of understanding and inability to see the feelings behind the behaviours. I berate myself for my reactions and my undeniable over-reactions.

Then I sigh, and start again.

We’re home. Routine is in full force and today Pickle’s first words were “Mummy, do you like being back home? I do.”

Then I sighed, and smiled.


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