Monday, August 2, 2010

Back at It

Webby and Sweetie Heart returned home last night at 9. She got to bed around 10. It sounds like they had a ton of fun, lots of late nights and laughs. All great things. She said she missed me though. Funny that's what she says about when she's in school, too. I think I need to dig a little deeper.

Everyone was up by 7am. The fighting commenced at 9. It's been on and off since then and it's only 12:30. I have no idea how it started. Maybe me mentioning that she needed to take a shower because of the salt water in her hair. And she needed to wash her hair. All I remember is she started by telling me she was NOT going to take a shower. I didn't respond. Que picking in Sweet Girl to get my attention. She yells at me that I hate her, and that I don't listen. Blah, blah blah. You know how it goes.

So I took Vicki advice and picked her up to connect with her. Took her downstairs and put her in my lap and hugged her. Talked to her about how she was feeling. How it must be hard to come home from vacation. She said she wished she and I could go back, just us. Wished she had her own room. Wished she could sleep on the inside porch. Wished we could build a house. I wished all the stuff with her, too. Then I asked her what kind of house she would like. She told me a little and then wanted to draw me a picture. So we moved on. Great!

Until she started picking...again. I just get so tired of it. Finally she got in the shower. I decided it would be good to ask her about what she feels her place is in the family. We talked about who she was in the family (daughter, sister, artist, singer, cooker, good with babies, has more responsibilities.) How she feels in the family (angry, frustrated, a little aggressive.)

I dug a little deeper. I grabbed a notebook and while she was showering I asked her some questions and wrote down the answers.

When she's angry she gets aggressive to punish because she feels like that person deserves it. Angry when Sweet Girl bosses her because Sweetie Heart is older. Feels like Sweet Girl gets away with stuff and she only does sometimes. Sweet Girl gets away with things because she doesn't tell the whole story and omits when she did to instigate it or retaliate. Sweetie Heart doesn't bother telling me what happened because I'll just tell her to put it on the problem board.

She gets frustrated when Sweet Girl doesn't let her in their room to get something when (I love this part) she was probably would have left. IE she doesn't leave to punish her. So there is unfairness. And gets frustrated when Sweet Girl tells her she's not nice, etc. (Acts older)

One thing she said was, " Because she made me mad I feel like she deserves something." Then she asked me, "Do you ever feel that way?" When I answered in the affirmative she said, "Good that means you understand and I'm very glad." She really needs understood.

I asked her about the Problem Board we use to problem solve for Family Meeting. She doesn't like it. When I tell her to put it on the board she usually doesn't because in her words, "It doesn't work!" We will agree on solutions but when there is a problem they won't do what we all agreed to do. I even look stuff up our Problem Solving book when there is a problem.

Here's what she says about it. It's like solving problems on her own because the parents give silly answers that we know won;t be chosen so it's like she is solving the problems by herself. She doesn't feel like her answers are that great. She doesn't know what to do, that's why it's on the board. And she wants it to be like homework. When she has a problem and asks she gets help, but when there's a problem at home or with her sister she doesn't get help solving it. And on a personal note Sweet Girl will only vote yes for her own solutions.

Lots if good information to process. They are now playing (mostly) quietly upstairs. If only I could get the fire out of my belly and relax from this morning's fights.

1 comment:

Lori S. said...

WOW, you got TONS of information to work with! Way to dig deep, deep, deep. I wonder - does she feel like she's getting better at solving problems? I understand her frustration -- when you identify a problem, you want a solution NOW, and you want it to start making a difference NOW. I remember feeling that way during the first 4 weeks of PonT when we were identifying problems, and once we'd ID'd ways to handle them, it could take a while to see some results. Encouragement from fellow bloggers helped me see that progress was being made in small steps, and helped me know that we were getting somewhere. How can you help her feel encouraged that her problem solving *is* making a difference (even if it is gradual) and that she does know how to solve problems?