Saturday, December 23, 2006

no advice, please

Oh, gosh, I don't know how to say this without sounding like a total witch. So I guess I'm just going to say it. Hopefully nobody will take this personally, and will understand that I'm just feeling particularly vulnerable about this stuff. Here goes.

I LOVE that people want to offer me advice, that they want to share what worked for their kids, that they want to help ME.

But I don't love getting advice about things we're having trouble with. First of all, I've read about it all, trust me. Most of it doesn't work for my kid, much of it has caused more problems than it's solved, and some of it is not supportive of our RDI program, so I would never try it to begin with. Secondly, I'm TOO EXHAUSTED to try anything new right now -- I already have some "answers" to some of our problems that I've just not had the energy or resources to address yet. I would love to hear what worked for your kids, truly I would! So in the light of, "here's what we did", please feel free to share. But please, PLEASE, don't tell me that I should try this or that or whatever. To me that feels like pointing and criticizing my "mothering inadequacies". Even though in my head I know that most of the folks who offer me advice are doing it from a "good" place, in my heart it wounds me, makes me feel defensive and inadequate. I don't want to feel that way, nobody does.

I truly believe that I am doing the absolute very best that I can for my kids. I've put a lot of effort into researching all the possibilities, have implemented what I can, and will implement what else we need when I am able. I write here to share where we're at and what has worked for us. I'd love to read about what works for you. But I try not to presume that I would know what would and would not work for anyone else's child. Please show me a similar courtesy and assume that I've researched the options and am doing my best.

Believe me, when I want advice, I'll ask for it! In the meantime, let's just stick to open sharing. I think that's what will best preserve all of our feelings of adequacy.


At 6:49 PM, Anonymous Another Mom said...

Argh - hoping, hoping, hoping my post didn't offend. I posted about my daughter's food issues (just so you know who the heck I am!). We're still mired in food issues and don't presume to offer much advice - I often feel better just knowing that others out there are dealing with the same !@#$% that I am, and that was the place the post was coming from.

You know (and I'm just throwing this out as food for thought as my addled brain tends to ping crazy ideas around a bit) I'm wondering if working on the big "issues" indirectly, i.e. through developmental growth, isn't the best way to work on the particular areas (toilet training, food stuff, etc.) anyway. What I'm trying to say is isn't it best that we're working on the underlying developmental areas - flexibility, problem solving, initiation, appraisal, etc. so that our kids can work through these issues in a developmentally appropriate way, rather than using behavioral techniques (yes, the behavioral ones work faster, but to me are just a bandaid). For instance, isn't the main goal that we move our kids forward developmentally (which by all appearances you're doing an uberfantastic job of), such that they can verbally comment on what the heck bugs them about particular foods (do they scare them?, is the smell repugnant?, do those peas feel like they're going to slip down their throats and they're going to choke on them?, etc.) Obviously, it's a slower method and more indirect than that of a more behavioral approach - i.e. a reward for trying something, etc., but globally isn't that what we're looking for?

And yes, it sucks, sucks, sucks, to change diapers, etc., but I always remind myself that you don't meet many adults in diapers who only eat three foods! We'll get there eventually......

Anyway, enough of my ramblings. Just wanted to say I meant absolutely no offense, and it's obvious (and I mean this from the very bottom of my heart ) from the pictures on your blog, that you have done tremendous work with both your boys - you can tell by the gleams in their eyes.

Best wishes for a restful and happy holiday.

At 7:24 PM, Blogger Virginia said...

Reading your post, my mind wandered back to a conversation I had with some woman a couple of weeks ago. Apparently, she just HAD to put me in touch with this AMAZING mom who was doing SO much for her TWO children with autism. Oh yes, they were on a GFCF diet and the dad had actually created a product line based on the diet. They were at a private school with 1:1s; I really MUST check it out.

I tell you, I was just ready to scream!

Here's hoping for less (ideally no) unsolicited advice!


At 4:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just wanted to send you BIG BIG hugs!
This certainly is NOT an easy journey.
You're doing your very best.

"To those who understand, no explanation is necessary; to those who don't understand, no explanation will suffice"

Enjoy the holidays and thanks so much for your blog!


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