A relatively successful few days! We are still getting a lot of verbal abuse, a smattering of bitten arm and boom boom jump the room but bedtimes have gen-er-ally improved and we feel like we are starting to be taken seriously by CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service) and the various local authority Social Services, so a tentative hoorah!
Perhaps I should explain ‘various’: Although our children were originally taken into care by a Northern Metropolitan Council, they now live in the Verdant Royal Borough; The Wave and I were prepared as adopters by Just Out of Town Council and you cannot belieeeeeve how much trouble that spread of responsibility has given us! Between the three of them, they will happily pass the Blue buck for as long as we allow them to. We can pretty much rule out Just Out of Town whose sole responsibility is that some of the advice they gave us has not stood us in very good stead. The other two are equally responsible (IMHO) and just need to get their act together, take it on the chin and split the difference so we can all get on with helping our boy.
Last week the Verdant Royal Borough stepped up to the mark and allocated a member of their Family Solutions team (deNice Lady) to take on our case. We chatted for an hour, went through the usual potted history and she left us some homework in the form of a few photocopied chapters of ‘NonViolent Resistance – a New Approach to Violent and Self Destructive Children’ by Haim Omer (Tel Aviv University). Yesterday, the Wave and I were assessed by their therapists (more nice ladies) before we embark on their NVR training programme: a practical therapy based on the venerable example of Gandhi and Martin Luther King – big shoes to fill but great models to follow. I am already looking forward to the sit-ins-with-friends in Blue’s bedroom (I kid you not).
We are also getting some support from Verdant Royal CAMHS, who came to the hospital last week and actually listened. They will be writing a report based on which the powers-that-wish-they-weren’t will make a very important funding decision. Northern MC meanwhile are still trying to wash their hands of us. They paid an ‘independent’ psychologist to assess whether Family Futures was the most suitable therapeutic model for Blue. Nothing to do with the cost, of course, but her report found as much fault as it possibly could. The list of corrections we have made is almost as long as the report itself but what do we know, we are only the recipients of the therapy?! Every other professional we’ve come across says that Family Futures is the right place and the ‘independent’ lady (a former employee of Northern MC, would you believe) never even met Blue. What a waste of time and money in order to wriggle out of paying more! They may regret it if and when we go down the legal route, which is the last thing we all need in terms of additional stress but which is looking increasingly likely as time passes.
Whatever. We are ready to rumble.