Thursday, 21 November 2013

A Fear of Christmas...

Our youngest is beginning to panic...

He doesn't like Christmas. He just can't deal with it. It doesn't help that his birthday is also around the festive season.

School have told me he is becoming emotional and needy, crying all the time one minute then shouting the next. This morning I went in to find that he had been up most of the night eating blu tac... I know that as his posters simply fall off the wall. This is a sure sign that he is 'in a dark place.'

This is a throwback to his early days with us - where he would eat wall paper, blu tac - anything really that could fill the 'gap in his tummy' when he is lonely.

He isn't hungry, but he can't tell you why he needs to do this.

I sat him down this morning and we chatted about it before school. He sat in my lap, almost like a baby, and just lay there while we talked about Christmas and birthdays and... mummy... did I know she didn't feed him?

He has so few memories of his mum (I won't give herr the honour of having a capital letter), at least that's what we thought - but one thing he obviously does recall is the hunger - the hunger that led him and his brother to eat whatever was at hand.

I wonder if much of their time spent locked in a room was over the festive period - whilst the birth parents were out getting drunk and celebrating - their kids were locked in a room and forgotten about.

Its hard for school and other families to understand - after all, what child doesn't like Christmas and birthdays?.. But for TJ and the Sprog they are not associated with memories of fun and laughter... they are associated with drunkeness, domestic violence, starvation and being forgotten about - no wonder TJ dreads seeing the trees go up in shops or doesn't want to talk about 'what he wants for Christmas'.

The Sprog is coming through it - interesingly though he won't tell me anything that he wants as presents - but for him I think that is because that he simply doesn't think he is worth buying presents for - self esteem is such a big issue for him.

I don't want us to dread Christmas, as I know a lot of adoptive parents do from the various chat rooms etc, I want us to build our own traditions - so if our tree goes up later than everyone else's, or we don't make a huge fuss over toys and stuff then its not that we are being mean parents - we are just re-introducing Christmas to our children in a gentle way - so they can learn to love Christmas and know that it is a time of love and joy - not a time to fear....

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