Saturday, April 9, 2011

DD roller coaster!

I wanted to thank everyone for their thoughts regarding DD.   Yes, I do think that she acted out because she was afraid of the freedom and responsibility that coming home would mean.  I am sure that she was not consciously aware of that, but I think you are right.  Despite this, however, she did not handle the news well.  There was, as I anticipated, a lot of screaming and drama.  And a lot of rudeness towards DH and I.  DD was of the opinion that DH and I had made the decision, not her.  She believes that we don't want her any more.  I feel awful about that, but if she is going to be physically and verbally violent, there is just no way that we can do it.

So here's where things have been this past week: After they broke the news to DD that she wouldn't be going home, we learned that the RTC wants DD out as soon as possible.  They said that it's because she is still not stable, and that she (as of yesterday) has turned 18 now, and if she assaults a child in the RTC, the RTC will have to press charges to protect the children and they don't want to do that.  So now, they don't even want DD to stay until her funding runs out in June.  So I guess all the "planning for discharge" and whatever has been flushed down the toilet!   It's really weird.  And I'm angry about it.   Nobody, in the entire 10 months that she has been in the RTC, knowing that her 18th birthday was coming up, told us that things could happen this way.  It has been very sudden and abrupt.  We knew for several months that DD would either be coming home or going to a "group home" after discharge, but we figured the timeframe would be the same either way--just the destination would be different, and we would all have time to get used to the plan.   I feel like they weren't realistic about what she was capable of , and now that expectations have not been met, they're washing their hands of the entire situation as fast as they can--it's extremely disconcerting and frustrating, but it doesn't sound like there's much to be done at this point.  They are giving up on her.  Her discharge meeting is April 14!  We did not have a say in when she would be discharged, or how fast this happened.  Nobody consulted with us at all until they told us what was going to happen.  Makes me want to scream and act like DD!!!!

Then we found out that due to budget cuts in MN, the group home funding is very limited.  In fact, according to the county, a current group home resident will need to die in order for DD to get the funding allocated for that person.  They are not giving out any additional funding.  The funding that the state provides for residential housing is not enough to pay for DD to be in a corporate group home (like the ones that I work in at my 2nd job).  In our small and poverty-stricken county (and I'm still not sure I understand this completely), the best thing they could come up with was to place DD in a child foster home for violent kids about 7 miles away from our house.  Supposedly DD can stay there as long as she stays in school.  This is our ONLY option in the county.  If we do not go along with giving this home a shot, DD may be placed in one of the more urban counties in the state that may have funding available quicker.  DH and I will still be her guardians, but she will live with another "foster family".  I don't really understand how it works, as I've never heard of a situation like this before, but we, as DD's legal guardians, will be electing for her to stay in this foster home, just as we would if we were electing for her to stay in a group home.  There would be no court hearing, and supposedly we will still have a great deal of input into DD's life.

I have a lot of mixed feelings about this.  I know we said we can't handle her any more.  And I believe that is true.  But I still feel like this placement into this foster home is somehow saying that there is someone out there who can be better parents than we can (which is really probably true, but it hurts).  I hate the thought of someone else being her "mom" and "dad".  And I'm worried that they will do a bad job.  And I'm worried that they will do a good job.  And I'm worried that since there are other kids in the home, and it is undoubtedly less structured than the RTC, DD will assault one of the other kids in the home and get kicked out, or worse.  There is no backup plan right now.  This is the only option in the county until/unless someone dies. 

As I stated before, part of me wants to just give up and move on, have her be someone else's problem.  And part of me knows that she will run back to her "real" mom on a moment's notice, make bad choices and end up in jail, despite my best efforts to keep her out of trouble.  So sometimes I just feel like "well, let's get it over with--it's gonna happen anyhow..."  But dang, I still love her.

There's been so much emotion this week.  And I feel like I'm being swept along on this wave....and I can flail my arms, and look to see where the wave might be going, but I really don't have much control over what happens.  And as a parent, that's a terrifying feeling.


Anonymous said...

Carol, the fact is, there does come a time when we no longer have control over the lives of our children, and sometimes we have to exercise tough love. I have an adult daughter who got involved with drugs, and my husband I stepped in and made sure she got the help she needed before the drugs completely destoyed her. She has been clean now for a little over 5 years, but she knows that if she relapses back into that lifestyle, she will be on her own, as much as it will hurt her as well as me and dh. Remember...even God had to 'divorce' His own children and leave them to make their own decisions, even to their own destruction. We can't let the bad choices our children make destroy us along with themselves.

Mel~ @ Lifestwistedstitches.com said...

Honey this is so heart breaking to read and we KNOW you love DD. The feelings are real and raw, but you are being true to both of your needs despite the limitations of the system. You are strong.