Friday, May 21, 2010

No Bowl of Cherries here

Not only would the boys have eaten them but we have issues. I've been quite honest about the good and the bad and I'm gonna vent. Big time. About that daughter o' mine.

We run into issues that obviously most people will not. I realize that. Doesn't make them any extra fun. Even if we do get three times the joy. Sister has been a snot. A real rotten SNOT. And no, that doesn't stand for Sweet, Nice, Overly Terrific. It stands for Stinkin', Nasty, Overly Terrible. SNOT. Good thing we love her as much as we do.

So what is that she has done?? I know, you are just dying to know. WELLLLL---- she decided to tell brothers that SHE didn't like little bro Cam and and that he is terrible (not perfect but not terrible either!) so that when they came here they had already decided not to like him. And he was THRILLED for them to come. SOOO looking forward to it. Now he is sad, upset and angry. Because the boys are hurting him. When I am not looking, when I am, they pretend to be nice, but they are still too rough with him. Both of them but Chance more so than Chase.

How did we figure this out? WELLL.. we skyped poor Jaxon who was a bit overwhelmed with the 3 goofs, who can't take turns talking, who can't keep from carrying on and yelling over one another, and she told him "she really didn't like her little brother". Not NICE. I mean, it's not as if she hasn't gotten along with him this past year, they have been buddies most of the time.

So then when we went out in the yard to get some pics, the boys started their usual when he got near them and I asked what was going on. I could see the guilt on Chloe's face and then Cam told me before he went running into the house upset. I even posted the pictures for you all to see, I mean do they think their mother is stupid?? If they do- WRONG ANSWER. And you can see SNOT's attitude in the picture as well, then how funny she thought is was that they chased Cam into the house upset. WOW, who is this girl?

So after we went inside and I talked with Baba, we had Chloe translate that this was unacceptable behavior and it better stop immediately. Then we talked or should I say reprimanded Chloe for her nonsense, telling her she should be ashamed to have sabotaged the boys coming here like that, she KNEW better.

We asked her how she would feel if the boys and her were here first then Cam came with a sibling and THEY ganged up on them and picked on them and made them feel horrible after they have looked forward to them coming for over a year? What if SHE had to share a room with people hurting her any chance they got?

Then I got really mad at her because I told her she was really making it harder for the boys, that her "translation" was only what SHE wants to tell them and it's going to stop. Here we are only 5 days from being home and having this BIG issue. I told her it was terrible that her brothers had to witness this and were probably standing there thinking we did not want them here and might even return them, and that made me really sad and hurt for THEM- I could see Chase was upset and I went over and hugged him and told him I loved him and held him. Chance was hanging next to sis snarling at me.

I told her it wasn't this way when she came home, she didn't get in big trouble and have to worry if we were taking her back, she was eased into issues we needed to work on. But that she is giving them a harder time of adjustment when she is doing what she is doing.

After that she was told she is grounded, she is not going to Hannah's tonight, as planned, and she is going to come up with some answers for what she is doing. She refused to speak, her usual coping method when faced with something she doesn't want to answer to. So she will get plenty of time grounded to figure out what she would like to say to us to work this out. I know it's hard for her to take on the responsibility to help her brothers but she is going to have to shoulder some of the burden, it's just how it is.

I have someone else coming to translate for us to the boys so they will understand what the issue is and we will know what is being said to them. We also want to make it clear that Cam can not being doing things to them, he is not a favored child here, a very common idea for these new kids. Chloe thought when she first came and Kat was doing stuff to her she couldn't tell us as Kat was here first. I don't want any of them to think they will be able to rule my roost and pull stunts on the others. They must become siblings, all of them. I did tell Chloe as well, I am not raising the 3 of them separate from Cam and Kat, I can't.

And funny enough, they accept Kat. No issues with her at all. Although they do the same as Chloe, Kat is very cuddly and often Chloe does not want to be hugged, so she pushes Kat aside. Kat has become used to this and doesn't take offense to it, it's just how they are. Older kids often aren't used to how much we touch, hug and are affectionate with one another. They are not told "I love you" even in a normal Chinese household. Makes me sad for them to miss out on something so essential to us, just a hug can make things so much better.

Another thing we have not really seen yet but I know Jaxon's mom has been dealing with is the issue of trust. When we ask the kids "how was your day, what did you do?" They look at us like "what did I do wrong?" They have not had to answer to anyone, I know our boys went to school, went out to play and as long as they were back at bedtime no one asked where they had been, did they do their school work. If they were questioned about anything it was because they were in trouble. Any attention toward them is usually met with concern from them.

Chloe very much still has some issues with that, it took MONTHS for her to learn if we are looking at her she is not in trouble. She comes off with "what?" when we look at her. We do not see this with her brothers, I was looking at Chase last night, thinking what a nice kid he is, and he smiled at me, then I kept looking just to tease him a little and he looked over again and then laughed. I had to laugh because I knew if he had the English to say "what?" he would have.

Chance and I are getting along a ton better than we did in China, that little bugger worried me. But other than his following sister down the wrong path, he is doing wonderful. He is very helpful to me, anything he sees me doing he will jump right in to help. It cracks me up that the "man" of the family, Chase, sits back and tells Chance to help me. Although he will help with things as well, even on his own.

Both of them are bored and want to go to school, with only 14 days left, there's really no point. I enjoy having them here during the day to myself and getting to know them without sister and it is building a strong bond with them. It also gives me the time to get to know them better and they are learning to rely on me for their needs.
Speaking of needs, we are off to the grocery store today, we need more of everything, including the potatoes, good guesses for the "2" but it was 2 servings, one for them, one for Chloe when she got home. I NEVER would have gotten that from the 2 fingers he held up to tell me 2 :)

Also loving the fun you all are having in my comment section, thanks for the laughs, I need them about now! At least I got to vent, I feel better already. It's an adventure, alright. Still glad I signed on for it:)


Suzanne said...

Sounds like Chloe is either jealous or wants to hog her brothers for herself. All very normal I'm sure given what she's gone through. Kudos to you for addressing everything so quickly and so upfront with the kids- you seem to be fast on your way to gaining their trust because you tackle the issues head on. I love reading about your family and am fascinated by the blending in of the new sons. I think you are a terrific mom and you have a terrific family and your hard work will pay huge dividends when everyone finds their place in the family. Big Hugs!

Lori said...

Bless your heart. You are such a great mom, Vickie! I'm so glad that you are keenly aware of all this, right off the bat. Sounds like you've got a great plan in place by having someone else come in to translate to help nip this in the bud.

Stay strong!!

Donna said...

Oh no! Poor Cam! I remember when I was Chloe's age, I was pretty rotten to my little brother (who was six years younger). Maybe it's a phase and its not as personal as it sounds. But she should answer for it anyway. I know it breaks your heart to have your kids split apart by something like this but you caught it early and I'm betting that you can get the big boys to understand that bullying is absolutely not allowed.

Did the boys learn any English in China? I know it's easier to have Chloe translate but maybe total immersion is better? After all, it worked for her!

Maybe you could tell her that she'll be sharing her room with Cam if she can't convince her brothers to treat him better!

I feel for ya. This can't be fun.

Our Blog: Double Happiness!

Bangs said...

Yep, Chloe and Cam should share a room. But that would be punishing Cam too... How about Chloe shares a room with big bros and Cam moves into Chloe's room....

I think Chloe is testing her "power". She clearly has some sort of control in this situation and is trying to see how far she can take it. I know you need her to translate and help out a lot, but that is probably giving her this false sense of power . The boys are looking to her to learn how they should behave so she is pushing that boundry.

Just my 2 cents... I hope the other translator provides some great assistance.

Holly said...

Oh, hang in there, Vicki! Bumps in the road. :( I feel for you too. I know that God can and will smooth all those bumps out in time. Praying for you! You are doing an awesome job!

Lori Lynn said...

I think you handled the situation perfectly! And I think you will nip this in the bud. With these new family dynamics, it will take quite awhile for each child to feel comfortable in their place and role.

Chloe is clearly feeling in control of the situation and will probably continue that as long as the brothers don't speak fluent English.

Those pictures really touched my heart. Cam needs to know that he is not losing his status. He must really feel outnumbered right now. I would do my best to allow Cam some one on one time with each of the new brothers, if possible, to build positive relations.

I wouldn't be too mad at Chloe. It is so easy to see why she is acting the way she is. I think your tough love may take awhile to sink in, but she will eventually get it. Anything you can do to let her know that YOU are the one in control, will help her settle down.

I love how you are direct and clear in explaining your expectations and I think it is a great idea to bring in an interpreter, instead of relying on Chloe.

Kat seems to be such a doll through all this. My Chloe (Kat's Qinzhou cousin) is also a real affectionate and loveable child. I have been thinking a lot about Kat, as she has been rarely mentioned in most of your recent posts.

Amy in Arizona said...

Thanks for being soooo honest about everything. It really helps those of us that might consider older child adoption in the future. Sounds like you are handling things really well and you really seem to know your kids quite well. Kudos to you!!!!!!!

Jennifer said...

Hang in there Mom! Once again Chloe sounds like a grown up version of our Xinyang girl. She shuts down and sulks when corrected. Praying for you all.

Dawn said...

Chloe is certainly worried about loosing her brothers to Cam...and enjoying her power over her brothers as well. It would be good if you could have that translator make some regular visits so she would know she might get caught more often. You are right on top of this mom and it will be worked out... good job! ;-)

Nancy said...

Stay strong. Vickie. Sounds like you are. My heart breaks for Cam. Chloe certainly is acting the BRAT. Hope everything gets ironed out. I think once you have a translator you can rely on, things will get much better. Praying for you.

Krista said...

I agree with Jennifer. Our Xinyang girl reacts the same way to being corrected. {sigh}

It sounds like you all are being very proactive and doing what it takes to get it worked out!

Motherbird said...

I admire you in so many ways, and I know you are a very strong woman. Thanks for keeping it real with us - the good, the bad, the ugly.

I'll be praying for Chloe to have a change of heart, and for her to figure out that momma knows what she is talking about.

Hang in there! I know that you RULE YOUR ROOST!!!


*Overflowing* said...

I love your willingness to be's a breath of fresh air! I am praying for your family. It will all settle down, it just may be bumpy for a bit. Blessings!

Dori's Mommy (Diana) said...

I've been reading your blog and really fascinated by your family. I thought it was the neatest story I've ready. This post wakes me up and I realize the sibs are TEENS. Adjusting to a being in a family, new country, etc and they are TEENS. We have 1 teen right now and he's driving us batty. God's blessings on you has you raise 3 at once!

Hunan Mommy said...

Just had to stop in and tell you how much I have enjoyed reading your incredible journey. You are doing a phenominal job! So much is different with teenagers but there is so much that transfers to mothering an adopted toddler to a lesser degree (Hunan - 2 years) like the lack of affection and eating! Your story proves that love truely conquers all!


Lori Smith said...

Praying for you here. We have 6 children altogether. 3 birth, 3 daughters from China. Our son, 17, has Asperger. We are a family with lots of noise, fun, love, and chaos AND special needs issues. I see families with what looks like the "perfect family" with the perfect China adoption. I know there's NO such thing as perfect, but well some families try looking that way really hard... I love reading your blog story since your lives are just real with hard and happy mixed together- what real life really is! Somedays I'm overwhelmed, but I'm glad I'm not alone in keeping on "keeping on."
Keep up the good hard work of loving and guiding your kids !
LoriSmith in CO

bbmomof2boys said...

I can't even imagine how hard this is for you. I know your heart is breaking for not only Cam but all of them. Things will settle down. Great idea to get someone else there to translate for you. If she told the boys that she didn't like Cam I wonder what else she has told them. Of course, I can remember whispering to my brother different things we were going to do to our sisters!! wheeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!!!

Hang in there - you are doing wonderful!!