Sometimes living with a special needs child is so hard! My Goldilocks (8) has broken thousands of items since she walked through our door 6 years ago. Of course, I know that things are not as important as relationships and children. However, I am so tired of the constant destruction. It is very important to me to be a good steward to the Earth, to recycle and reuse, and not to waste. So I guess that's why her destructiveness pushes my buttons of frustration.
The "experts" go around and around on why she breaks so much. It's the FASD or the RAD or the ODD -- or maybe she's just rough on stuff. I don't really care what is the reason. I just wish I knew how to stop the breakage. Since Christmas day, she has broken 2/3 of her gifts. Interestingly, she has not broken the gifts given from three friends, only gifts given by family members, even though the gifts from family members were exactly what she wanted and seemed delighted to receive. Hmm... me thinks I see a bit of RAD here. Today, she damaged her sister's Christmas doll carriage. Fortunately, it might be repairable.
I feel bad that Goldilocks' room looks worse than the other children's. That is because she loves to tear up paper and throw it about the room. She has a room with lots of windows and has destroyed all the shades, so they are torn. We can't afford to replace them just to have her tear them again. I'm concerned that her self-esteem is damaged by having a room that looks so bad, yet she tears up books and destroys her favorite things every single day. There is hardly anything nice in her room. She really is a little fashionista, yet she purposely rubs mud into her clothing because "it's fun". So it is even hard to keep her looking dressed as neatly as the other children.
So what do you do with a child like this? Do you throw everything away that is damaged, even though she seems upset about it having been broken? She will have hardly anything left in her room if I do. Do you have a repair time where she has to fix/maintain everything several times a week? I am leaning towards this option, but I am not sure it is worth my effort. Goldilocks is not a gentle child. She is rough on everything, and I am not completely sure how much of it is within her control. I'd really like some advice.
For example, just the way she eats a peanut butter sandwich makes it get all over her face, even her hair and eyebrows. She colors with a crayon more like a 2 year old would than an 8 year old. If she is left unattended with a bottle of shampoo for a minute, it will all be gone.
We had six casualties today...three items that were so far gone they needed to go in the trash. I hate the waste of it all. As you can see, I am one frustrated Mommy tonight. Oh well, my rant is over and it feels better to get it out here than rant at my dd.
On the upside, school is going well. I have a really fun post about our Ancient Egypt project coming up soon.