My regular readers must think that either I or my daughter have Multiple Personality Disorder. Sometimes I post about her as if she had a trail of cartoon bluebirds following her, and other times I hint at the hellishness of living with such an emotionally unstable kid.
Both are true. I try, try, try to focus on her positive qualities, but things are deteriorating quickly around here.
This afternoon I'm dropping her off with my friends, and she'll spend the night with them. Sometime tomorrow I will have to pick her up and I am already dreading that. DREADING.
Right now I am wondering what it would be like if she returned to her mother. (Before you panic - it's probably not even possible.)
Like many children adopted at an older age, my daughter views me as her kidnapper. She rages at me mostly because I am the wall standing between her and her momma. Her older siblings are also missing from her life, and I am to blame for that too. She may never forgive me for causing this ache she carries.
I have heard that her mother is now clean. It could be true. I have also heard that she misses her little girl, and I know her little girl misses her. Who am I to stand in the way? I mean, who do I think I am: Jesus Christ? Am I so sure that living with me is such an outstandingly beneficial experience for this child that it is worth all the grief and rage it causes her?
Knowing my daughter as I do, I envision her happily reunited with momma & new step-daddy--for a week or two. Then I can see her restlessness start to settle in. Momma never sent her three older kids to school, so it's likely that my daughter will not be academically encouraged. Momma is also not likely to enroll her daughter in sports, although the child is quite active and athletic.
But are school & sports good reasons to keep her hostage in my home? Given her emotional volatility, it is quite possible that at some point while living with me her enthusiasm for these things will dissipate anyway. Quite possible. She is also likely to engage in self-injurious behaviors, experiment with drugs, etc. no matter who she lives with. These are the outcomes that we are trying to avoid by having her live with me, instead of the family she misses and adores. Are we really so sure that living here will lead to the best outcome for her?
Her mother's financial stability is another concern, but I have never believed that poor people are less worthy of being parents than those with money.
Her mother's emotional stability is shaky, but let's face it: so is mine. Even though I am more stable than momma, there has been almost constant turmoil in this house for some time now. Again, am I so sure that the advantages I can offer will lead to a better life for my kid?
Her mother's boyfriend was a big part of why the authorities removed her from the home in the first place, and that boyfriend is now long gone. I have heard the new husband is not as terrible. Hell, he could even be a nice guy for all I know.
So given that theoretically the reasons for the mother and child being separated are now gone, is it even ethical for a girl and her mother to still be apart? The mother does not appear to be evil. She has never been accused of being physically abusive or outright mean to the child. Perhaps my child is right to think I am wrong in keeping them apart.
In a way, sending my child back to her mother would seem like sending her to her doom. But her future is uncertain here, too. And here she has that deep ache of longing for her mother and siblings that she would not have there.
Her mother never showed up for any of the court dates that eventually terminated her parental rights, and she has never asked me to be reunited with her child. I have heard though, that she has expressed this desire to other people. Who am I to stand in the way?