April - posted on 03/04/2015 ( no moms have responded yet )
I just moved my whole life, my husband, my son and we moved into my sister's old house. Until October my little brother was in my sister's custody, before that he was with my drug addicted father who suddenly decided he could care for him and took him out of my older brother's care. Before that my mother, who is not related to this child in any way, took him in and sought the help of an occupational therapist. For the first two years of his life, he was with my father and his drug addicted girlfriend. So by the time my mother sought help he was seriously emotionally stunted. There are times when I think we make some good progress, but he still sees his mother. By law, I am obligated to let his mother see him for two hours on Saturday. I cannot prove that she is still using, but her life circumstances indicate that she is still living that lifestyle. He has been diagnosed with reactive attachment disorder which means there was no real bond formed with his.mother during infancy. He retreats into fantasy and is passive aggressive and manipulative and I think it comes from the fact that his mother always showers him with gifts and fun experiences. She spends no time or effort getting to know him. She makes elaborate promises and constantly talks about how she raised him and blames my sister for his faults. She is quite delusional. Out of guilt and the best of intentions I used to allow extra time and one or two times, I let him stay with her over night. This was against my better judgment. She recently told him that she is now pregnant (her third, 1st two born addicted)and could not understand why he was not happy about it. She has an education that ends at eighth grade and has never had a job. She is on disability after she wrecked her car with my brother in the car, no one was injured, but she claims to have a serious back injury.
My brother often uses the fact that he wants to live with his mom, or that he is sad over the death of our father as a way to get out of simple tasks. He is seriously immature for his age and claims he cannot do simple things without help. I have tried to be supportive and encourage appropriate behavior, but sometimes it feels like I am going in circles.
My son is a very sensitive and caring boy, who is always generous with his things, my brother steals, lies and takes things and doesnt share. He seems to believe the world is all for him everything is all take and no give with him. It is very draining for my family. We moved our entire life and changed everything in order to care for him and sometimes it feels like a bad decision. I dont expect him to show much gratitude at eleven years old, but I would like him to start to understand that he should treat us with respect and not be sneaky or dimissive. I would never abandon my brother, but I dont know how to get through this without it having negative effects on my son. I love my brother, very much, but my son has to come first. I recently had to tell his.mother that I have to stick to the letter of the custody order. No more extra time and no overnight visits. This weekend she is taking him to chuckie cheezes. He is 11 but that is what he wanted. So he asked me to give extra time, but I cant just go back on this. it doesn't seem that he wants extra time to be with her specifically, but because he wants as much fun and entertainment as he can get. He needs constant attention or entertainment. He has an endless list of things he wants and it is never enough. He was demanding gifts for my son's birthday and my son couldn't even think of anything to ask for, he was content with a museum visit and a nice dinner and cake.
I had a fight with his mother about having him be a part of my son's birthday plan. I ended up calling out a bunch of things that I kept my mouth shut about before and told her I would give her only what I was required to. When I give an inche she wants more and then fights when I say no, so I figure I have to end that by sticking to the order exactly. I have told her not to contact me unless it is to schedule for her visit and that I will.not force him to call her, if he had plans with a friend or we have some family event she will.not get her visit. If she cancels, which she does often, she will not get extra time or a make up visit, it is her responsibility. I feel bad because of how he acts sometimes, but he was very upset with her and didn't even want to see her for two weeks. He asked specifically not to see or call her and said he was angry with her. However, he forgets all that the minute toys are involved. Last time I said he was sick and instead of asking how he was she said "does he know toys r us in in the picture for today" he associates buying things with love. Her text messages are.often completely incoherent, not just a few typos or grammatical errors. There is so much to this story and I have done lots of research and I am working to get him back in counseling, he doesnt want to, but I am doing everything to get him to a place where he can be emotionally healthy. Sometimes I feel like it is too late but how could I give up.. Perhaps I need counseling as well.