There may not be too many of us who are parents of a child with Reactive Attachment Disorder. But for those of us who are I thought I would share my Survival Guide for the Holidays as the Adoptive mother of a RAD kid.
Secrets and Presents: Due to the fact that our children are hyper-vigilant it is advised to keep all gifts at a different location such as a storage room, or family members house as long as it is a family member the RAD kid will not visit at any time before the gift giving moment arrives.
Do not attempt to hide them in the car trunk because for some strange reason the trunk will pop open in the driveway at noon with the child standing in plain view.
Do not try to hide it in any location inside of the home, shed or master bedroom closet. It will be found no matter how unlikely it just will be if there is a RAD child in the home so just do not even bother.
Treats and Sweets: If your little RADlet should ask for a cookie say, “No, but you may have a cookie.” If the sweet child should beg for candy say, “No, but you may have some candy.” If the darling should be so greedy as to want seconds on hot chocolate say, “No, but you may have another cup of hot chocolate.” We cannot afford to have our Reactive Attachment Disorder child hear too many “yeses” so by remembering to say, ‘No” each time our child’s brain will continue to be conditioned to hear the answer no but, then receive information that takes all the power away because they got what they wanted, we gave them what we want to give them and the power was all ours. Remember we have to stay one step ahead of them all the time.
During the Holidays EVERTHING is a surprise: Keep all the holiday plans to yourself and make sure the RAD kid does not over hear any planning. They have enough anxiety and excitiment about the Big day there is frankly no reason to forecast the little things that are going to happen from one day to the next. When it is time to get dressed and go someplace just get dressed and go. It a RAD child knows there is a big event the next day then plan for some kind of RAD blow out situation just in time to really mess with the plans. It is a much smoother holiday it you just leave the RADlings in the dark and let every moment of the holiday be one journey of surprise after another.
These are but a few of the ideas there are for surviving the holidays with a Reactive Attachment Disorder Child. Maybe other families might have a few survival tips and want to share them on the forum? If I think of any more great ideas I will be sure to post them Here: