Thursday, July 2, 2009

A special message to RAD parents

A special message to RAD parents,

Not long ago, my blog has become very active, thanks to some R.A.D. parents that decided to read my meager thoughts. Those thoughts, no matter how shocking, tragic, touching or tear inducing have brought many to comment and say thank you to me.

I need not nor deserve your thanks. My deepest and most profound hope is to continually thank all of YOU for your very generous, thoughtful words of kindness and respect. I have lived a life that is far below honorable and I have engaged myself in acts that would repulse even the lowest of life forms with my struggle with R.A.D. I deserve no thanks, and I have not earned in my mind my restitution for those I hurt, those I killed (animals) and those that I took such advantage of during those horrible years.

My blog is to serve as the beginning of that restitution in hopes that my meager thoughts may serve testament, witness and usefulness to R.A.D. parents, R.A.D. sufferer's both young and old that have so selfishly given their LIVES to help children that their own families tossed aside like garbage. I feel it incumbent upon me to live up to YOUR standards and convictions, as my own have proven truly weak and fruitless upon deeper consideration.

You are the light of your R.A.D. children's lives. I know that the choices you made to adopt, foster or care of a R.A.D child is beautiful, testing, frustrating and sometimes almost hopeless. For those of you that I have spoken with personally, I know that you will not give up on these children. The road you and your child or children has been studded with rocks,
cliffs, beautiful trees, thunderstorms and different paths.

I cannot promise an easy road ahead. This, however, I can promise you. If you see your children to the end (And I know you will) your sufferings and your tears haven't fallen in vain.One day, many years from now, your child will look into your weary eyes and say "Thank you".That may be the ONLY gift they can give back to you for the years they tested both your sanity and your conviction to care to them.

That "Thank you" however, will be the sweetest gift that you have ever received. It will be the gift that your child can't burn, kill, destroy. The nights of confusion, anger, tears and anguish you feel now is something that I truly wish I could share with you. I more than anyone else know's how hard this struggle is.

Just remember this: When your child has their R.A.D. fits, it's not your child you struggling with.It's a disorder. When they act out, they are communicating years of pain and strife they only way that they know how. They truly are talking to you. They are sharing their pain the only way they can verbalize their emotions. To highlight my point: When your child is smiling, laughing with you, wrestling with you or reading with you, THAT is your child.

The pain, the struggling, the yelling doesn't enter your mind. No anger is present and you are enjoying the fruits of your very hard struggle as it was intended. Keep that in mind when things go wrong and the end of the yelling, stomping, acting out. While your children are communicating in ways that you detest, they are still communicating. Remember the times above when you feel like your hanging onto a worn out rope on it's last thread hanging over a large precipice.

Keep the faith R.A.D. parents. This post is for you and you alone. I understand and thank you for your service to so many children that need you, regardless of what they SAY.

Michael

11 comments:

Diana said...

I'm yet another RAD parent who has recently picked up on your blog. I so appreciate your words. Especially today, they were just what I needed to hear today as one of my children is having an exceptionally hard time right now...and I'm having a hard time not caving in.

I have gone back and read your whole story. Thank you for sharing your heart. Not just the happy places or the healed places, but the raw and confused and angry places too. For those of us who have never ourselves endured the unspeakable attrosicites that you and our children have, understanding and reaching out to our children is a challenge to say the least. But your words and your thoughts offer so much insight and help us be able to much more effectively parent our children, and in turn help them heal.

God bless you for sharing something the world doesn't want to see or accept. God bless you for helping us understand. God bless you as you continue your own healing journey. God bless you for helping others along the way.

One Future At A Time said...

Dear Diana,

During the hard times, it's so important to remember, it's not your child acting out, it's his/her own way of communicating the only way their brains know how.

Keep the faith sister and prepare to endure more along your difficult road but stay the course!

Thank you for your kind words, and feel free to email or call me if you need to vent.

Michael

Sheri said...

You may not want to hear us say thank you, but the reasons our kids will say thank you is mostly because of people like you who share you story and let us know how you think so that we can help our children grow to possibly avoid some of things that their future could hold.

So thanks! You are amazing!

Nancy said...

Michael,
Found your blog via a yahoo group for adoptive parents using the Beyond Consequences model.
We have 4 kids - 1 bio and an adopted sibling group of three, with us just over a year now. This past Mother's day, I had a very hard time being "honored" (could be read as "thanked")for a day. I know who I am and who I want to be. They don't always match. But somewhere in my own self-loathing moments that day, I realized my kids needed to express their love and appreciation for me, regardless of my ability to graciously accept it.
You are being thanked here, because you've given. Whether you've written for your own journey or to help others - you've given something. Something I NEED. I will continue to read your words here because I am desperate for them. I need the hope I read in you. I need to know that my little guy can and will come out on the other side.

...and I cannot take that much of a gift with out these words:
THANK YOU and Many Blessings to You.

Tricia said...

I am also an adoptive mother to two siblings, although my son is VERY mild with attachment issues, my kids have disrupted from 2 placements and they are only 2 and 5. I will NEVER give up on my kids, they are the light of my life! Like I said my kids are mild but we still have issues to over come and support is key and I'm here to support you by listening and learning from your past!

brenkachicka said...

Wow, thank-you for writing this blog. My son's birth mom essentially refused to do anything in her service plan to be reunited with him. She tried in her way, but her life was one of sorrow and disrupted foster placements. It is hard most days. He is only four and goodness, I love that kid so much! Despite the difficulties I will never give up on him. He means the world to me.
Keep writing. I feel like there is a lot I can learn from you.
-Kerry

A said...

<3

Lisa said...

Whether you acknowledge it or not, you are an astounding man. You're giving our kids a voice. A voice that needs to be heard.

Your voice for thousands of kids and the parents that need to hear it. That is very powerful Michael.

Patti said...

Thank you for sharing your story. It helps seeing on the inside. We have adopted 6 kids 2 have rad and 1 healed of rad. I cannot imagine telling my kids that we wished that we had never adopted them. We have been asked if we knew then what we know now would we still adopt our kids. I say if I knew then what I know now then we would have been more prepared and would have been ready so yes we would do it again. We have one that is more severe she came to live with us when she was 6 and we were her 14th placement. I love my kids!!!

P said...

What a tremndous resource you are providing! I am not a RAD parent, nor am I a RAD adult, but I am part of a communitythat is pursuing a lot of adoptions,a nd we are facilitating adoptive couples, especially children coming out of human trafficking as well as abuse.

We just had a fund raiser in Cincinnati and got here regularly to see my wifes parents. I would love to ask you questions or see you speak t o hear and understand more. DO you ever publicly post information about speaking or talks?

feel free to email me directly if you feel it would be appropriate....

One Future At A Time said...

P,

Thank you for your kind words. please contact me at Mike@HikingForSpirit.com


Michael