One of our readers had the same thought, and I wanted to share the conversation, (with the editing out of any personal information of course) in the hopes that it might start a conversation, give some hope, or at least let others who have kids with attachment disorders know they are not alone with their fears and should not feel guilty for those thoughts.
Question to Fosterparentrescue:
Am I the only one that fears one day my child may try to kill me because of RAD? That no matter what I do to love and give structure and therapy, that the emotional and psychological damage may be permanent?
I worry I adopted 3 future sociopaths. Don't get me wrong, I dearly love my kids! And there are times they are great, and we see progress, but the bad days, or the don't sleep for 2 days, or raging tantrums that last for hours to days, those are the days I worry. The looks of hatred from my 8 year old, the cold stare from my 12 year old, make me think one day when they are bigger and stronger than me they will try to kill me. Tell me I'm over reacting.
Answer from John- FPR:
Well, this is a normal thought for those of us who work with RAD kids, and you need to pray that the Lord opens their heart to you.. because the love that they will have for you is what will save them.
Do you see any compassion towards you from them? I kind of went through this myself with my one RAD child that I just let go to another facility (I talk about it in my blog posts "Knowing When to Let Go,") Keep records on their behaviors if you really don't feel safe or if they are acting aggressively towards you, you'll need it later on down the road because you do have options if it gets to that point.
When you keep records you can see whether or not their behaviors are really getting better or worse. Keep track of their behavior at school as well.
I do relate to what you are saying. If you adopt RAD children, you really have to have Faith. Do you have a counselor involved? You need one for you and the kids. Having support is vital, especially when dealing with RAD kids because they can be so manipulative.
Have you read our blogs on the house rules and building trust with RAD kids? I can send you links if you need it, or you can just search on the blog for them. I have worked a lot with RAD kids,... some success, some not, I am here for you though.... always. and thanks for bringing this up, I think a lot of people feel this way.. I know I have expressed this same thought myself.
Response from reader:
we had talk today with my sons therapist today about the behaviors still being a very big issue in the home. we expressed our concern over the trauma to us all from his behaviors, the exhaustion, and the lack of progress (not due to her lack of competence, but to his severe lack of trust and his type of RAD). she said with his age (8) it would be very hard to find a residential placement for him, and there would need to be all other options exhausted first, and there would need to be a certain requirement of behaviors before he would be accepted (like setting fires, sticking firecrackers in animals rear ends, and harming himself or others). she recommends intensive in-home therapy, and feels with his specific history and behaviors a certain theraputic approach would be the most effective. He is "disorganized", "inhibited" (in his dis-regulation, not in his behaviors towards others), and he plays 3 roles, the victim (least of the 3), the perfect adorable child (public personality) and the role reversal controlling (behavior at home, and most dominating behavior). she feels the most effective theraputic approach is the circle of security. she is going to look for the right person to take this on.
i feel a small sense of hope, she said with his type of RAD that 85% of the children can be healed and form proper attachment, when just 20years ago that number was very low and there wasn't considered to be effective treatment.
Response from FPR:
Glad that you have hope, and he is still young enough that you have a chance, I agree. I have had success with kids when I started at 6... so, you are still in there. If you have read some of our blogs about working with RAD kids, you know you have to take him back to infancy as far as his dependency on you.. and work your way back up from there, in order to build the trust he should have had from the beginning. Good luck to you, and keep us informed on how you are doing....