Adoption gone wrong

Margaret - posted on 10/21/2012 ( 16 moms have responded )

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I need help. I adopted a 7 year old girl and she is now 10. We fostered her for 1 year and then adopted. she is the typical DCYF child with multiple disorders and multiple placements. I have 3 older boys 18,16,13. We thought we have so much love to give that we could change someones life. We thought we would always have room to love anyone. .... My family, my marriage, my health my job and my life are all suffering. I am at a loss. Our lives have become about surviving the day without crying or fighting. EVery day is a struggle and I cant believe such a wonderful thing has turned into such a horrible thing. My husband and I are educated, middle class people with 3 loving sons that are now forced to live in a home where everyone is fighting, crying and upset. I go to counseling, I take her to counseling, I spend my whole life taking her to specialists, activities, tutors, changing and filling prescriptions... etc....and I get in return aggrevation, mental and verbal abuse.. I feel sick about failing her and my family....I feel like the worst person for not being able to do this. But I swear on everything I have that I have given this my all. WHat do I do???

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At Wits - posted on 05/23/2013

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Is there some advocacy group for adoptive parents in these situations? If not one needs to be started. I am NOT talking about the touchy/feely groups where there is sunshine and gentle breezes and all children are beautiful gifts. I mean one that is truthful about this situation and what hell we ALL go through to give these children better lives when we are the ones who SUFFER. All the Counseling in the world can not take away every unbearable moment and there ARE SO MANY when you consider raising these children.

I cannot say I thought it was going to be roses, but I never thought I would have a child living in my house who takes deep pleasure angering and hurting all the members of her family. We too have counseled, medication, done special therapy (horse) and yet here we are in the same cycle day by day and years later. Yes she is in pain but someone needs to consider the casualties of the children's mental problems and that never seems to come up which disappoints me. I don't mean in this blog. I just found this blog.... No one wants to feel sorry for the "normal" generous people who open up their homes and torture themselves by choosing this for themselves. IT IS NOT A BED OF ROSES AND THESE CHILDREN ARE NOT EASY. There has not been a happy day in my life except when she was not here. At some point in the day she either yells, screams, hurts my other child either mentally or physically or continues to misbehave until I am angry and I am out of patience. These are the facts of our life, every day. I know most of you experience this. These are our realities not the sweet child who misbehaves occasionally or the child who every once and a while says "I hate you!" and does not mean it
Life is difficult to live like this. I am a peaceful kind woman and just don't want to see me and my family torn apart just because we wanted to help one person. How is that fair. The state knows what these children are capable of yet they are surprised or make you feel like a criminal for not living in their BS world of "Children are Beautiful" It is not their fault they did not do this, but OMG WE ARE ALL PAYING FOR THE MISTAKE THAT MADE THEM THE WAY THEY ARE, AND DEARLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I mean all the times she told my other child "I hate You!!!! ", for no reason. Also every time a lie was told to hurt someone and it worked!!!!!! We are into the 100's with incidents as you all are. The woman who said all she does is cry......I HEAR YOU!!!!

The more I love this child the worse she acts!!! A few months back I got as close to her as I ever have been considering the history and I told my husband she will do whatever she can to destroy it because this is what she has always done. I tried not to let it happen and the more I didn't react and tried not to be angry with her the worse she behaved and the behavior got abusive and outrageous until it could not be ignored anymore. Then she finally accomplished what she set out to do which was break any relationship we managed to form.

What we need is an advocacy group that IS REAL!!! A place where you can say what you actually feel and not fear to be judged or even jailed!!!! We need a place where we can send these kids for a break because all the normal people in the family do need a break!!!!!!!! Living in those conditions day in day out with the screaming and meltdowns. The hate meant or not. It is a sin that we as the adoptors don't get the help and understanding we need and deserve!!!!!!!!!!!! These children are no walk in the park and some days it is hell on earth!!!!! I have asked for help....and received NOTHING but some BS counseling that I already had access

We need someone who we can call to the house and speak the truth and actually help. Someone who will say" You all need a beak because this child it very difficult and you are good people to be helping him or her. We need someone to be there and shake their heads as we shake our heads in disbelief. This is the reality not "Well, Billy or Susie has issues and you have to be understanding of when Billy or Susie whacks the heck out of you or your other family members".

Al I have to say is "REALLY"????????? Hey.... you take her for a 6 month period and tell me how understanding you are at the end. WE ARE HUMAN and their is only so much we can take.

Bi-polar
FASD
ODD
Reactive-Attachment Disorder.....

M family and I try EVERY DAY..... but the truth is they are hard children to live with and in turn hard children to love. They all deserve a good life and love but really if I can't make it happen to my expectations (because my expectations are high for her to have a good life ) than who the heck can do it? No one likes to hear the truth..... but there it is and all the people who judge and criticize I just wonder WHAT they have actually experienced. It is easy to look over the fence and make comments about something you have never experienced!

Good Luck To All and I wish you peace and happiness!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Even though it may not come when we want it I hope some day it will find us all!

Sue - posted on 11/01/2012

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OMG!!! I know how you feel. At times, we have been there. What helped us GREATLY is a therapist who specializes in attachment disorder. She comes to our home, and helps us all. Check ot Brian Post and Nancy Thomas for additional parenting tips-and they may have therapists in your area listed on their sites. The only thing that has helped with our many adopted kids is addressing their reactive attachment disorder (regardless of their other diagnoses)-with techniques that take the anger out of the equation.



It sounds like as long as your little girl has the house upside down A) she has no reason to fear an intimate relationship with you 2) she feels like she is in control-which is important to kids with trauma backgrounds. Also, you may want to doublecheck/get her meds - sounds like she has a lot of anxiety.

Iris - posted on 05/24/2014

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Sarah I agree with everything in your post. The fact is the system is SO BROKEN and has been broken for too long they don't know how to fix it. While I was researching information for adoptions gone wrong I found a woman in Illinois who is bringing a class action lawsuit against the state and she also has written a book about what her family has gone through. Which is somewhat what my partner and I are going through. See in order to have the state take custody of our son we will be labeled by law as neglectful parents and put into two different registries where would would never be able to work around children. Luckily we have lawyers that will get that dismissed but it's the fact that we would be treated like criminals because the state where we adopted our son hid the truth about him. But in order for us to have peace of mind at night that this kid is not going to kill us in our sleep, or our pets, or the children in our apartment complex, this is what we have to go through. We have one more court date to deal with and hopefully it will be over. It is a drastic step to take but at some point when these kids become a danger to themselves and others and the police, the therapists, social services, etc are not willing to help you, you have to take action to protect others. That is exactly what we did. Sometimes the chaos and craziness just isn't worth your own sanity or your family's safety. Doing what we have done is not for everybody, but when you have done everything you could for this child and nothing helps or works, what other option do you have.

Shweta - posted on 06/12/2013

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You may take her to church. Children with mental and behavioral disorders usually carry generational curses that they bring from their families. There is only one man who can break those curses. His name is Jesus Christ. I can tell you that it will work because I had generational curses of depression broken over me. I have no problems now. Jesus Christ restored my life.

Michelle - posted on 12/26/2012

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Margaret,
I feel the same way as you. We adopted my 9 year old daughter when she was 7 and her little sister was 5. We do not have any other children. All we wanted was to have a family and give children who came from a bad situation a good life. We did not she has RAD until after she was here for almost a year, and at that point, we felt it was too late to stop the adoption, and we had already fallen in love with her little sister. We are at our witt's end with her. All she does is lie, make up injuries or illnesses, throw tantrums, and fight with her sister. I am starting to feel like they should've separated the girls because she goes crazy anytime we give her sister any attention. I really think she needs to be the only child. I definitely feel your pain. We're at a loss as to where to go from here. Nothing we do works, and she won't participate in therapy, so we stopped taking her. All I can say is good luck. I hope you find something that works to help her. If you do, please let me know as nothing we have done has worked.

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Trenise Michelle - posted 10 hours ago

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I truly understand what you are facing cause I face the same situation! When I read your article my heart went out to you all! You live my life everyday and all I do is pray and count down the days tell her eighteenth birthday. She's fourteen now so, you know I have a whole lot of days to count down unless, she rebels, and decide to run away , or placed in a girls home. She is a night mare that I can't seem to wake up from!

Judy - posted on 07/16/2014

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I'm truly sorry for what you are going through.... one can suggest therapy {you most likely have done this} giving 'in' to her & not, and a host of other remedies that haven't brought success or stability to your household. I feel for you in every sense of the word I may not have any answers legally- but morally, your family cannot continue to be destroyed. I was adopted as a baby to a wealthy, childless couple who went on to have 2 beloved biological children. Therefore, right there was my transgression- I could never be 'one of them.' I wrote and published "Not One of Them" A Story of Adoption, Alcoholism and Abuse. I will say this, Mother absolutely despised me &saw me as an intruder in their home. I required over 10 operations to repair childhood physical damage throughout my young adult life. I've always wondered- when adoption doesn't work out, either with the family or the child's placement - what is or can be done to rectify the situation? No one benefits, for certain 'Mother' would have been elated to rid herself of me, and I... wouldn't have suffered severe child abuse. The bottom line I believe is this, it doesn't always work out, some children don't do well in a 'permanent' forever family- allowances must be made when the situation warrants it. As sad as this sounds, we live in a society that an adopted dog/ cat can be returned if it doesn't work out in a family unit- yet a child must stay under any and all circumstances. Something is wrong with that, very wrong. If there were an allowance that allowed 'my' parents to 'return' me, I'd of been elated. While this is a very touchy & sensitive topic, it does happen much more often than people wish to take heed of. I do wish you well and a life of peace. What does the child, your daughter herself want? To stay with you or to go? If she chooses to leave it is no reflection on you... it's a life she is comfortable with and in the end, if she isn't willing to cooperate- your lives will be miserable. It's time laws are enacted to prevent problems with adoption- if an adopted child isn't working out, no one but no one will ever win. You're in my thoughts and prayers. :}

Iris - posted on 05/24/2014

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I hear all of you. Now I want to add my story. First reading your stories has me feeling like all state agencies do is lie and bury the truth so their kids can be out of the system and adopted. My partner and I adopted a boy 5 years ago. There has NEVER been a honeymoon period or a quiet moment in our lives. Every time he opens his mouth, he lies, he steals, he has bullied younger children, etc. Now I'm not going to tell you guys everything because I would be writing a book. But at 12 years old he exposed himself to a teachers assistant. He was suspended for 15 days and sent to a diagnostic school for the rest of the school year, this happened in early October. We had to go through MST/PSB therapy for 6 months, 3-4 times a week, 2-3 hours a night.
Not to mention he has been in therapy since we've had him. after the therapy ended he went on a porn spree, ordered $100 worth of porn on our cable at 6:00 am every morning during school vacation. Accessed porn sites on our electronics at night while we slept. Continued to try to access porn after we put pass keys on EVERYTHING!!!! ALSO we had to hide all our electronics!!! Lets see, he held a Huge rock over our neighbor's daughters head as she was laying on the ground, he was laughing saying he was going to smash her head in. Have I mentioned that everytime he opened his mouth he lied. The teacher is lying, the principal is lying, the assistant is lying, the neighbor is lying, etc. Also we have several pets, one cat he grew fond of but always made him meow when he wasn't in our sights, when asked what he was doing he would say, nothing mom i don't know why he was meowing. The FINAL straw was when he pulled the tail feathers out of one of our pet birds!! ALL the tail feathers!!!! Oh and not to mention throwing a fully healthy salamander into a fire pit in front of other adults and children!!!. Five years of therapy, five years of different therapies, different therapists. And at the end Not one wanted to address the animal cruelty. Yes he is going to a therapist for his sexualized behavior although all he does is lie an parrot back what he has heard in other therapies.
What my partner and I did was call DCF and told them we could not do this anymore and he is a danger to himself and others. I haven't even told you EVERYTHING this now 13 year old boy has done. We are now terminating our parental rights to him and putting him back into foster care. This may sound drastic to some but when you have a child that has been diagnosed with so many issues including RAD there is no other option. He was not only effecting our mental health but our physical health. He has effected our relationship not only between us but also both of our families. No one wanted to be around him or knew how to deal with him. We as parents, not just adoptive parents, have not been trained to deal with kids that have the enormous amount of issues these kids have. But no one should have to endure what chaos these kids put our families through. My partner and I are currently going through counceling to help ourselves heal through this situation. We will heal through this.

Sarah - posted on 05/12/2014

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Margaret thank you for screaming your story out loud. We are 12 years down the line with 4 years of visible breakdown and 2 years of intensive, BS, intrusive patronising, well intentioned, well meaning gloves and rose tinted glasses off social services expertise support. Just when I think it can get no worse we are imprisoned with a child who we cannot help, who hates us and his siblings, just as Jodi described. But it does not get better, I have gotten so good now at hiding and managing my anger I am as cold as ice. What I realise is that society and social services need parents for these children so badly that they don't tell the truth to prospective adoptive parents, they BS when there are problems, procrastinate and cynically allow time to go by as slowly as possible with waiting lists and 'lets see how you manage now for three months or so' approaches that eventually the adoptee becomes an adult and someone else's problem. I believe that is the main aim of any post adoptive support for the really in need children (by that I mean the mistreated, broken, more than 6 months old before removed child) because no research suggests any of the attachment theory therapies, CBT in this population or counselling works. The truth is 'come on, come all those with the arrogance to feel you have enough love, let us hood wink you into taking on a child, we will tell you its hard of course we will but we wont let anyone near you with any break down stories, any nightmares to tell or siblings who lost their childhood to the altar of adoption; so come, come on, listen to our spun adverts of big eyed emaciated little ones, so little and vulnerable anyone with a hint of thought about adopting will be charmed in, guilt played, enticed in' then bye-bye let the nightmare begin once you signed the documents there is no exit strategy.......Oh you mean you've been threatened? oh that's normal teenager behaviour, Oh you mean he steals, in trouble with the police, drugs, punched at you or out at you? where's the police report where's the numerous repeated arrests? oh yes you got it normal teenager behaviour. The fact that you use all your skills, all your experience to move out of the way, limit the consequences for him Oh that's great well done, means you don't pass the imaginary threshold trigger where we will take him out! Rather a case of show me the body and then we will agree the situation is sufficient enough to implement an exist strategy!
So thank you for sharing the horror stories, at least I got to scream out loud too! Thirty per cent adoptions break down? Our team told us it was rare and now we know why ....because they wont have them back!

Michelle - posted on 04/15/2014

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Has anyone considered homeopathy to help these children in their healing process? Also there's never any mention of addressing previous nutritional deficiencies...which really plays into how a person thinks, acts, and responds to daily stimulus & surroundings.

At Wits - posted on 05/23/2013

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How long did you have to do this before you saw the difference? Because I have taken that route and she will do everything and anything to invoke my anger. The calmer I was and walked away she turned violent and destructive breaking things and throwing things and being dangerous. It was so much easier just to get mad at least she would stop and it was over and not dangerous!!!!!

J M - posted on 02/03/2013

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do sincerely hope things are going better for the little girl she must be a in a lot of pain.

Yes its a selfless job, not for everyone, common thing people feel Love is all you need, well yes and no, you need more than Love , you will need 24/7 care she deserves to get for her to cope.

She needs to be in a family where no other distractions are EG: competing for love etc will only frustrate her, even then she may of had so much in her past she simply may not be able to understand even how to receive Love, thus more reason she needs 24/7 carte for lest first 1-2 yrs.

Do hope things are working better, as pumping drugs in them for emotional issues, is never the answer. She needs time and patience with out distractions.

Jodi - posted on 11/13/2012

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Margaret, I feel your pain!! We adopted a wonderful girl with attachment disorder and she turned our family upside down. I had already had two older kids by birth and thought I really had this parenting thing down, but parenting a child with attachment disorders is a completely different ball game! We, too, had a counselor who came to our home. The strategies she offered were invaluable to us. After about six months of counseling, we are back on solid footing as a family again and peace again reigns in our home. Like Sue said, taking the anger out of the equation is imperative. Our counselor explained to me that every time my daughter was able to make me angry, she was hitting the jackpot... In the beginning I had to simply control my actions so my daughter couldn't SEE my anger, but that anger was definitely there... and initially my control only made my daughter more angry and it felt like it wasn't working AT ALL. But after a while, the fact that I was no longer getting angry ended up making all the difference in the world.

Margaret - posted on 11/05/2012

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Thank you for replying. I know we need to look at this from a different angle and I know we need a lot of help. I will definately look into the RAD more. That was something I had put aside. I am so angry now and I need to get past that.

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