Trauma, different ways

We’ve had all six kids in our home for just under a year now. It’s very interesting how trauma from what they experienced will work its way out every so often, generally when we least expect it.

Ani took Mayci to spend the night with her while she was pet/housesitting a few weeks ago. Mayci fully believed she was now living in that house. She even referred to our house as the Duks’ house. She was very little when they moved very often and were homeless at times, but clearly it left her not fully secure or totally understanding when we say “this is forever.” Who knows how long it will take her to truly internalize it.

The older two boys show the most signs of what DFPS calls “neglectful supervision.” This makes sense. They were almost 4 and 1 1/2 at removal and so had been in the situation longer than Nicholas who was only 6 months old (the twins were born after the older four were removed and so never lived in that situation).

Mayci, however, doesn’t show any signs. Instead she was horribly spoiled. This also makes sense. She was the only girl. At removal she was 2 1/2, but she was spoiled by her caregiver after removal as well. Being overly indulged can cause just as many problems for a kid as being neglected.

You wouldn’t think being spoiled is a trauma that needs to be worked through, but it really is. And we are very excited to see her begin to show remorse for breaking rules and understanding why sometimes she has to take a time out or say sorry for what she has done.

Trauma is a strange thing. The same experience can affect different kids very differently. One thing is for sure about trauma, though. It will work its way out eventually and that can be very hard.

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