I have been talking to Lynda a bit about my seven year old daughter, Amber. The comments were getting a bit long, so I figured I would make a post out of it.
I don't know any other way to start this post than to say that Amber has issues. Lots of them. I love her to death, of course, but the girl has problems. It started out as behavioral problems when she was just 1 1/2 years old. At home she would behave fine, but at daycare she would exploit any opportunity she had for trouble. We had many parent/teacher meetings, and Amber improved, but the problem was still there.
One day, when Amber was 3, the school had scheduled another meeting. I showed up, only to be bombarded by EIGHT people -- 2 daycare staff, the director, 2 psychologists, and I don't remember who the other 3 were, I just know they weren't from the daycare. I felt ambushed. Why didn't they just tell me? I've been to all the other meetings, why shouldn't I know about this? To top it all off, a few minutes after discussion began, one of the people there asked, "And where's the mother in all this? Does she just not care?" Talk about blood boiling!!! Someone in the room politely mentioned that "her mother" was sitting right there. Open mouth, insert foot -- the lady apologized and didn't say another word the entire meeting. The only thing that came out of that meeting was that perhaps Amber should be drugged. Drugged! At 3 years old! ... That's why nothing ever came out of that situation.
Fast forward 4 years. I work very closely with Amber's teachers, and the behaivoral problems are pretty much gone. These have been replaced by socialization and emotional problems. Amber simply cannot interact with other children. Her idea of playing is telling everyone EXACTLY what they have to do. "Put this here -- no, that goes there. No, we shouldn't be a kitten. Let's be cats. No, YOU be the mom, I'll be the kid ..." Thus it's no surprise she doesn't really have friends.
Along with not getting along with anyone, she flies off the handle emotionally if anything does not go her way. And this isn't because she's used to getting her way. No, she doesn't get her way many times a day when she's at home. So, she just flies off the handle numerous times an evening. And she cries, and cries, and cries.
I don't know what to do. I give her affection, lots of it, but Amber doesn't respond well to that. She's never been very affectionate at all. I tell her I love her, I praise her accomplishments. I try to ask her how she feels and what's making her upset, but nothing pans out. I try to help her learn how to play by interacting with her and her sister. Her sister, by the way, is the complete opposite. She loves everyone and everyone loves her and she gets along splendidly with everyone but her sister (not for lack of trying). If it were both of them, I'd think that I was doing something terribly wrong. But it's just Amber.
This past week I have seriously considered a child psychologist of some sort. There are a couple problems with that: (1) I'm afraid they'll want to drug her, and I don't think that's appropriate for this situation (2)Money. My copay for a psychologist is $50 a visit (yes I looked this up because I'm seriously considering it). That's a lot, especially if she's seeing this person multiple times a month.
I could write a ton more about this situation, but at the moment I don't have time to. I didn't even explain the problem very well, did I? Oh well. Suggestions are still welcome. Has anyone been there, done that?