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In the last track, we discussed the double dose resulting
in decreased empathy, hyper-vigilance, and fear of retaliation that children both
receiving and witnessing abuse can experience.
Marcy, a 52 year old woman, had adopted Robbie, a 13-year old boy. Robbie's mother had been killed in a beating by her husband. Before being adopted by Marcy and her husband, Robbie had once been handcuffed to his bed for a day by his father after he had missed the school bus. As you know, Adjustment Disorder is a condition from which many children in abusive homes suffer. These children often become unable to form loving and intimate relationships and show almost no affection toward people. Let's look at Robbie's behaviors.
Robbie also exhibited abnormal speech patterns. By this, I mean as soon as Robbie entered my office, he started with a stream of nonsensical questions and incessant chatter.
With children such as Robbie
who are suffering from Adjustment Disorder, I often found, like you, that the
home environment is usually the biggest factor in the child's recovery. Marcy,
Robbie's adoptive mother, reviewed basic parenting techniques like defining expectations,
being fair, expressing love, and allowing emotions. I felt
Robbie hid his true emotions from others and himself by destructiveness, lying,
unusually social behavior to gain attention, and incessant chatter.
In this track, we discussed the three Adjustment Disorder Behaviors of Destructiveness, Chronic Lying, and Unusual Social Behavior, that many children in violent families suffer from. We have also provided you with two techniques of unfinished sentences and list-making to treat children with Adjustment Disorder such as Robbie. Would it be beneficial to consider using the Unfinished Sentence or List-Maing in the the next session you have with your Robbie? If so, you might consider replaying this track just prior to your session as a reminder about these techniques.
In the next track, we will discuss the Yo-Yo Syndrome children can experience when moving from home to home to escape danger.
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