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Hi, just joined the forum & looks like there's lots of goood advice out there so here goes!


We have an BD aged 9 and around six months ago adopted an AD aged 6. Over the past few weeks I have started to find things so stressful & draining & I'm getting to the stage where I'm finding it difficult to like our AD. She is ok although at times testing when my husband is around but when I am with her on my own she is the demon child. She completely ignores me when I ask her to do anything & gives me this horrible glare & stare as if to say "yeah right if you think I'm going to do what you say then you've got another thing coming!". She bickers constantly with my BD & is alwys trying to get her into trouble. She does not have any diagnosis or underlying medical issues. Maybe this is all normal & just part of the journey but it would be useful to hear of your views. At the moment I'm beginning to dread Christmas & spending any time with her but at the same time don't want to ruin it for anybody else.


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Hi Adopters2016. Firstly welcome & congratulations! I'm sure someone will come along soon with good advice. We have a much bigger gap between our BD and AS (9yrs), I guess without a little background it's hard to know but I would look at how many moves your LO had had and is this some kind of test to see if you'll 'send her back' also what have her relationships have been like with 'mother figures' during the past 6years, 6months in is still very every early days - did you have a honeymoon period or has it been like this since day one? How is your BD? We try to ensure that once a week we have some 121 with posey (BD) so she has space and normality as its such a massive event in their lives and pootle (AS) can be very full on at 3yrs old! I hope things improve and you get some support from pas x


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Thank you for your reply. AD was taken into care shortly before her 4th Birthday ; was placed in foster care where she stayed until she came to us earlier this year. She had formed quite a close bond with her FM & I do believe there is an element of testing at the moment like you say. BD sometimes can't understand some of her actions & at times is frustrated by them but we tell her to ignore them as any reaction whether positive or negative will be a reaction in AD's eyes - something I keep telling myself as well! I do spend time with BD just the two of us as I feel this is important - at the end of the day she did have us all to herself for almost 9 years so feel we need to keep that bond.


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I'd firstly, that's quite a small age gap so it's quite likely there will be issues around jealousy. Are they in the same school? Your birth daughter has a forever shared history with you - your other daughter doesn't and at 6 she's old enough to understand that. Plus it's around 6/7 when thinking becomes more concrete and understanding clearer so it can be a tricky age even for children who've been in placement since they were much younger.


I'd forget her chronological age and think younger. Much younger. Presumably she's suffered some trauma - substantial trauma? Her behaviour will be that of a much younger child, likely to match the age she was when she was traumatised. Her behaviour is her feelings, her language.


This time of year is particularly difficult for children for so many reasons. What was Christmas like for her as a baby, toddler, pre placement? Think of sensory triggers - sounds, smells, strange people, lack of routine in school.


May help to try and fill in the gaps - assume toddler age - if she were 3, how would you manage her behaviour? What has she missed out on? What gaps? Thinks Maslows Hierachy of needs. AUKs The Wall.


She needs to feel safe with you. Sure of you. And that's not going to happen in six months.


You say no medical needs? Does birth family history indicate drugs, alcohol, domestic violence, psychiatric conditions, ADHD, ASD etc? Don't assume everything will be trauma or attachment related - there may well be something underlying.


Referral to camhs? Paeds? Post adoption support?


And this is her first Christmas with you - quite possibly different to others she's had. Maybe give her a narrative about it works with you and do some wondering with her about how she's feeling - scared, anxious, excited etc etc?


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http://www.simplypsychology.org/maslow.html


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http://www.adoptionuk.org/different-kind-parenting/wall


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Thank you Donatella. Some very useul points.


There is some post adoptive support by way of a therapist being planned for the new year so we're hoping that may help both us & her.


I think alot of what we're seeing at the moment is because of the time of year as it is also triggering her ticks which we haven't seen in a while so there is an element of anxiety. I just didn't fully appreciate how tiring the whole process would be so it nice to have this outlet.


Must take a look at Maslows heirarchy! Thank you


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Don't beat your self up about how you feel, towards AD, we feel how we feel!. Its not wrong to hate or dislike.

i'm not a professional, but it would not surprise me if this feeling is coming from AD, she wants you to feel her pain. its her way on making a connection with you.

Lots of advice out there, but do what you feel is natural for you and your family, don't let AD run your life. Set strong boundaries, make time for husband and BC. They are your rocks.

Our AD wanted to be in control, she was always looking for number 2 spot, unfortunately she was number 5 in the pecking order.

My wife went through exactly the same experience and feelings. She was also the target of AD hate for birth mum.

AD would try and play each of us off, and very lovey dovey to me when I came home..


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