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Topic : 08/19 Tired of Being a Mom

Number of Replies: 916
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Created on : Thursday, March 20, 2008, 12:38:55 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Dare: 03/25/08) Motherhood isn't always about the good times, like baking brownies and having game night with the family. Dr. Phil talks to women who say they can’t cope with their children, and they’re running out of resources. Robyn adopted her 10-year-old daughter, Alyssa, six years ago from the Ukraine and says she actually has thoughts of sending the girl back. Robyn says that Alyssa hasn’t bonded with her and doesn’t know how to love anyone. She says her daughter screams, cries, yells and even threatened to kill herself! Robyn’s husband, Joe, can’t imagine living without his adoptive daughter and intends to stand by his commitment to the child. What's the real reason Robyn never bonded with Alyssa? Then, Cyndi says if she’d known her 12-year-old son, Alex, had autism and Down syndrome, she may not have brought him into the world. She says he hits himself, screams, grunts at the top of his lungs and wears two pairs of diapers at a time because he’s not potty trained. Her husband, Ulis, says he doesn’t find it difficult to care for Alex, but Cyndi says she’s exhausted and overwhelmed. Should the boy be institutionalized? Find out what Dr. Phil thinks. Plus, meet a mom with four kids who’s already left home twice. Now she’s scared she may leave again — this time for good. Talk about the show here.

Find out what happened on the show.

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March 22, 2008, 2:57 pm CDT

are you kidding me??

As the mother of a son with down syndrome, I am disgusted at this womans attitude.  I am hoping that the discription of her situation and attitude is more dramatic than what it really is..  Heh, my response to her is  "Deal with it, he is your son,"  Anyone who states that they wish their child had been aborted ought to be slapped.  Perfect or imperfect. Oh well.  How can you even look at him after making such comments? 

 

Having a child with special needs is very challenging.  There have been many trials over the  years since the birth of my son.  Not once have I wished that he had been aborted. As a matter of fact, when the doctor wanted to talk to me about "options" the idea was so far form my mind that I didn't even kno what it was that he was asking me at the time.

 

I have given up my career and my husband and I gave up our previous lifestyles to care for our child. We used to be very involved in our jobs and worked long hours, we went out all the time and we spent money because we had it.   Of course, a lot of that changed but it wasn't just becuase our son has down syndrome.   We both still work, have hobbies and do things that we like to do.  What's this lady's problem?

 

Do I have bad days?  Yes, but do. I have a lot of them. I get frustrated a lot and to be truthful, a lot of my frustration comes more from other people than with the challenges with him.  The thought that this child might be "institutionalized" frightens me and it makes me want to find these people.  There should never be any thoughts of doing this to your child just because YOU can't handle it. I would NEVER in a million years consider doing that to my son. NEVER.

 

Get help. There are services available and it's YOUR own fault for not obtaining it.   No child ought to be disowned because you didn't do what you were supposed to.  I'm guessing that the attitude that these people had was bad from the start.  Seems very selfish.

 

There are a thousand places to get support from other families who are in the same situation that you are. Of course on the other hand, if you're going to be like this then maybe it's in your childs best interest to go and be with other people who are willing to care for him and work with him.   

 

Some people have the attitude that  just because he had down snydrome he was a lost cause.  Shame on you.  Due to the efforts of my husband, myself and our team of early intervention therapists, teachers etc, he is going to attend school and have a full life.  He enjoys his life.  When I look at him and see him smile and do things that he was never supposed to do, I smile and I know he was worth it.

 

There were times when I had 4 early intervention therapists in my home a week.  We gave up a lot of our time so that he could have the services and it paid off!!   He did a lot of things before "they" said that he would.

 

I don't even know if I am going to watch this episode. I'm angry just reading the preview. I can't imagine what the freak out will be like it I sit down to watch.  *chuckles*

 
March 22, 2008, 4:54 pm CDT

Reactive Attachment Disorder

I read with sympathy the story of the mother who adopted her daughter from the Ukraine and was having a  difficult time bonding with her, etc.  I hope that Dr. Phil addresses the topic of Reactive Attachment Disorder and the terrible toll it takes on these adoptive families' lives.  So many of these children have been traumatized and wounded before being placed in their adoptive homes and the scars are very deep.  I would imagine that many of these families faced the adoption process with the mindset that "if we just love them enough" we can heal them.  That, unfortunately, is not always the case and the cost to the family unit is tremendous.  Both professionals and families need to be educated about attachment disorders and how parenting these types of children is totally different from what most of us  consider to be normal parenting.  Some of these children will heal, others will not in spite of the best efforts of those involved in their lives.  Educate, educate, educate!  There are so many children who need homes; but the families hoping to adopt them need to know what they are up against.  The schools are not equipped to handle their special needs.  Many professionals are not recognizing this lack of attachment and the accompanying behaviors.  It's so easy to say that the adjustment will just take time.  For the sake of these kids, the earlier attachment therapy is started, the better chance they have of creating those crucial bonds.

I will watch with cautious anticipation that Dr. Phil will address this issue and bring to light what many of these adoptive families already know.....parenting these children is extremely difficult and there are no easy solutions.  Love is not enough.

 
March 22, 2008, 8:20 pm CDT

Tired of being a mom

Quote From: flbutterfly71

I can't say that I feel exactly the way these mom's do, but I really understand how sometimes motherhood can truly affect moms negatively. I am married, have four children, 16, 14, 10 & 7, (my oldest is developmentally delayed, my youngest is a livewire) three dogs, we own a business and I am a full-time college student with a double-major! We are helping to take care of my brother-in-law who is 46 and Austistic, (my husband is his guradian). Our phones never stop ringing. We own a large home and most days I wonder how I will make it through. I realize I have created this but here I am and I get very overwhelmed! I hardly ever go a day where I don't feel exhausted, overwhelmed, and daydream about running away to China. LOL. I do get a few luxuries occasionally...a massage or a vacation. Unfortunately I feel like until my children are raised and on their own and college is completed for me, I will just feel crazy. Order is not easy to keep and we do fall behind. I realized a while back that I was losing myself as a person which is why I enrolled in college (knowing it was heaping my plate) but at the same time it was something for me! What I do realize in the midst of the madness is that my commitment is to this family that I created and no matter how heavy it feels at times I could never be happy if I jumped ship. How could I enjoy serenity if I walked away? There would be no peace in that no matter where I was! I could never do it! I pray a lot for strength and for answers. One day at time is a great motto. Worry about today, today! Go no further! I try to find outlets like laughter and I do poke fun at being a mom and having kids.(Erma Bombeck style) It is pure comic relief. Sometimes mothers tend to take things way too seriously!! Maybe this mom needs a break so she can regroup and clear her mind. Maybe Dr. Phil should send her on a spa retreat, somewhere she could receive counsel and she could rethink the situation. I wish her the best of luck.

Blessings to you and a gentle hug.

I posted earlier today, it is not on site yet. (Concerning our special person.)

I don't think going to a spa retreat will "help" mom, as her brain will be on overdrive thinking of all the stuff being undone, not getting done, etc at home while she is there.  You know, we can't shut them off for an instant (one of God's little jokes?).  I, too,was raised on reading Erma Bombeck, I used that (besides my Bible) as a basis for raising MY 3 sons.  And now 2 granddaughters often.  Thing is, with family members having special needs, you need more than a day out to take the pressure off. You need permanent resources.  I too, dream of days my home would look like HGTV, but am so glad I have had experienced what I have, it has made me the person I am.  There are 'end of the rope days' that I know will be better after the sun sets and rises again.  I have a permanent health condition as well that does not sit on the back burner. Yet, I try not to make the day about me.  

Apparently mom in question does not have the support from her family, friends.  She then needs to step outside of that comfort zone to apply for what her special needs family member needs. They cannot.  We are put on this earth to take care of each other.  When that stops, so does the world we want to live in.

 
March 22, 2008, 8:27 pm CDT

tired of being a mom

Quote From: thumper84606

Dr Phil,

I am so worried abt my daughter. She was in a 20 year marriage to a man who cheated and abused her both physically and verbally. She has no self esteem and they have 5 children. Abt 3 months ago she came out of her bedroom and found him and another man having oral sex together. She finally left him. I put her up in a motel for the night and then she went to her sisters home until he finally moved out. He moved to Texas and has not sent any child support money. She cries and threatens to kill herself because she can't make it. She said what holds her from doing it is her children. She applied for help from the state of MI but because she works 40 plus hrs a week she didn't even qualifiy for medicaid. I have asked her to get help but her response is I have no insurance and can't afford it. She moved out of her home about two weeks ago because she couldn't afford the payments. She went to legal aid and they helped her fill out divorce papers and child support papers. He was served last week and is now threatening to run so he doesn't have to pay. I feels so bad for her. I am proud that she finally got him out but I live on the west coast and she is on the east coast so I do what I can from here. But its hard. He calls and promises the kids things and then never follows through with it and its my daughter who the kids take their anger out on because he doesn't follow through with it. He is an alcoholic and a drug abuser and that is when he calls is when he's high or drunk and tells my daughter off or says mean things to the kids too. I told my daughter to not allow calls from him unless he is sober. But he calls when she is at work alot. Dr. Phil can you help my daughter get some counseling and her children.

Words of advice.  Tell your daughter not to allow any phone calls to her minor children.  She must protect them at all cost.

If the father only calls when high, this is not a person anyone should be talking to. Document the date, time, demenor and then keep for the attorney dealing with the divorce.  The judge will take care of this.  Also, if he becomes jailed, you will see some child support from his jail/prison earnings.  Once the system gets a hold of him, he will stay in the system and on the child support roster until they are 18 yrs old. 

The damage of the children hearing these promises from an absent parent is worse than NOT hearing from them at all.  Discuss with the children that they will not be allowed to talk with him when he is high or drunk.  That what ever he tells them will not be carried through as a promise when he is in this condition. Unless their father gets the help he needs, they need to understand that they will need to be adults to contact him on their own.  Choose your words carefully, talk with your pastor, an attorney, public health provider, etc.  PROTECT THE CHILDREN.

 

 
March 22, 2008, 11:04 pm CDT

03/25 Tired of Being a Mom

Quote From: shadycat1

 Not all women are cut out to be Mothers, sad but true reality. Unfortunately, many of them don't find that out until after they have children.
Babies are cute, but they require 24/7 care, and then the different ages and stages can be frustrating, parenthood isn't something you "try on " like a new outfit, the new outfit you can donate to charity or return if you figure out you don't like it.
One of the biggest disservices I've seen done to international adoptees, is seeing the shows that show the happy family with few issues, sadly this isn't the case tha majority of the times.  These children usually come from orphanages where there are many children per worker, they have never been taught to bond with one person, or they come from conditions that have made them unable to feel safe and secure, I'm not saying it dosen't work, it can and does but those are the parents that go into this with an open mind and have researched the reality of how these children have been living, and what issues can come up from this.
As for the disabled, "but for the Grace of God go I", I've never dealt with it.  But for her husband to say its easy, he probably goes to work every day, and I wouldn't be surprised if she is with the child 24/7 and needs a break.  Sometimes we need a break from our so-called "Normal children" , they can be a handful and frustrating, so a child that has Down's Syndrome and Autism cannot be easy, and those parents do need help and compassion, this Mom can't leave her son with the neighbor's teen daughter and go shopping for an hour or two, and maybe the grandparents cannot physically help, or they have no other family around that can give her a break.
Mom coming and going, not good.  If she can't handle it and her husband can, then maybe there should be a role reversal, she be the weekend parent and he be the single parent.  Coming and going like that is not good for the children's state of mind or their feeling of security.
I do wish people would get to know themselves first before having children, the reality is rarly the same as the dream.
 

Yes Shady, very true. Not all women are cut out to be mothers, and not all women feel fulfilled by having children. And yes, unfortunately, some of us women are raised to never think of anything else....we have kids, get married and then feel like hell when we don't feel complete. It's a shame.


 
March 22, 2008, 11:07 pm CDT

I feel sick to my stomach

I feel sick to my stomach, after reading the preview of Tuesday's show.  I feel sick to my stomach, because of what that woman said about her disabled son.  I have Autism, myself and I care for people who have Down Syndrome.  I would never wish not to have brought a disabled child into this world, if I did have a severly disabled child.  That woman is a Pro-Choice B****.  I feel no sympathy for her.  I think that her husband is a very cool guy.  I don't wish for that special, beautiful boy to be institutuinalized.  The mother has a real attitude problem.  Give the child to me.  I'll raise him, and love him, with all the patience, in the world.  I hate the negative attitude that most people have, about handicapped people.  I think that social services should take that precious angel away from his mother, because there is no way that she would ever be able to care for him, if that's what her attitude is.  That witch should have never been brought into this world.  There are a lot of successful adults, who have Autism.  There are a lot of successful adults, who have Down Syndrome.  There are a lot of successful adults, who wear Depend's.  That mother really needs to get over herself.  I have Asperger's Syndrome and I have a soiling problem.  Does that keep me from living independently, or looking for payed employment? No it doesn't.  Does it keep me housebound?  No it doesn't!  Do I live in an institution, or a group home?  No, I don't!  I think that Alex's mother is too full of herself, to be a good mother to him.  I wish I was a millionare.  I'd adopt him, in a heartbeat.  Some women should not be allowed to have sex.
 
March 23, 2008, 1:04 am CDT

03/25 Tired of Being a Mom

Hi Cyndi,

I work at a elementary school. I am a teacher's aid. I work one on with child that is in a wheelchair. He can't talk he can't walk and he can't feed himself. And on top of it he has alot of medical problems. He does scream alot. The one thing that have learned to do about that is tune it out.

Just because he screams does not give you the right to be mean to him. He might be screaming because he is happy about something. It may also be pree worning sigh of a seizer coming on. The little guy that I work with does have seizers. His pree worning is crying and then has a long period of laughing. He is a 911 all the time.

The one thing you can do is going into his school classroom and see how they are dealing with his behavior. If they have him on a behavior program at school, then you need to be doing the same thing at home. You can also ask to have an IEP meeting with the teacher and go over his behavior and what to do about it.

When your son does have a seizer make sure his school has a plan in place of what to do. The little guy that I work with is a 911 all the time. That is the plan in place for him.
 
March 23, 2008, 8:42 am CDT

Children from former Soviet territories.

Here it's very well know that older children adopted from orphanages in the former Soviet territories have a lot of physical and emotional problems.

 

This is no place to go into all the reasons why, but aren't people in the USA aware of this?

 

Don't they know that if they adopt these children it is a wonderful thing, but it is also a difficult lifetime commitment. We are talking about a child. Not a puppy that came be returned to the pet store.

 
March 23, 2008, 10:27 am CDT

Yes...

Quote From: rainpainrain

Yes Shady, very true. Not all women are cut out to be mothers, and not all women feel fulfilled by having children. And yes, unfortunately, some of us women are raised to never think of anything else....we have kids, get married and then feel like hell when we don't feel complete. It's a shame.


 

I agree with you both.

 

My mother went through a depression after my brothers were born.  One of them was born with numerous problems and  was in the hospital for a couple of weeks after birth, which affected his bonding with my mom.  I often took care of him and tried to deal with his behavioral problems.  When you're not cut out to be a mom (I don't know if my mom ever was), and then you throw in a child with a disability and various physical problems, it really put a strain on the marriage, and because the kid required so much attention, a strain on my relationship with my parents.  It's a big reason why I've put off having children so far, and why I may not have any at all.  I just can't deal with the possibility of bringing a child with so many problems into the world....I'm not up for round 2 of the same. 

 

How does one know if they're not cut out to be a mother?  Is there a way to know without getting pregnant and going through the experience? 

 
March 23, 2008, 10:46 am CDT

Well...

Quote From: kinksfan

I feel sick to my stomach, after reading the preview of Tuesday's show.  I feel sick to my stomach, because of what that woman said about her disabled son.  I have Autism, myself and I care for people who have Down Syndrome.  I would never wish not to have brought a disabled child into this world, if I did have a severly disabled child.  That woman is a Pro-Choice B****.  I feel no sympathy for her.  I think that her husband is a very cool guy.  I don't wish for that special, beautiful boy to be institutuinalized.  The mother has a real attitude problem.  Give the child to me.  I'll raise him, and love him, with all the patience, in the world.  I hate the negative attitude that most people have, about handicapped people.  I think that social services should take that precious angel away from his mother, because there is no way that she would ever be able to care for him, if that's what her attitude is.  That witch should have never been brought into this world.  There are a lot of successful adults, who have Autism.  There are a lot of successful adults, who have Down Syndrome.  There are a lot of successful adults, who wear Depend's.  That mother really needs to get over herself.  I have Asperger's Syndrome and I have a soiling problem.  Does that keep me from living independently, or looking for payed employment? No it doesn't.  Does it keep me housebound?  No it doesn't!  Do I live in an institution, or a group home?  No, I don't!  I think that Alex's mother is too full of herself, to be a good mother to him.  I wish I was a millionare.  I'd adopt him, in a heartbeat.  Some women should not be allowed to have sex.

 

I have to say that I DO sympathize with her.  She is probably depressed and feels alone,and hopeless in trying to care for this child.  I'm sure that she feels like things are harder for him because of the handicap, and that he's going to be judged and limited by it.   Trying to care for a handicapped child can be very frustrating and I'm sure she just has care-giver strain.  She needs help and resources for this child so that  he can assimilate to this world, and she can be a better mother to him. 

 

Caring for disabled children can be very HARD, it can dissolve marriages, create loads of stress and burn out for the care giver.  Maybe social services SHOULD get involved, at least to get Alex the care he needs, or maybe find a nursing service that provides relief care, and they could teach her how to handle situations more effectively.  In addition, I think the mother should see a psychiatrist to treat any possible depression and anxiety that keep her from being able to care for her son. 

 

Most Autistic and Down's children are usually very sweet.  Maybe the mom could join a support group with other women in the same situation so she doesn't feel alone.  There are resources out there to help her with this, she doesn't have to be alone in this.

 
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