Meet Robbin’/aka Cookie Monster. Cookie’s M.O. is stealing and hoarding. He is a wizard at it..and his darling good looks, beautiful eyes and kissable lips are his biggest tools against you laymen.("Wap", "Biff", "Oof") Nay citizens they are his tools of disguise, and he has everyone one fooled, almost everyone…but the MOMENATOR knows, she can see through that force field of cuteness and tomfoolery and see into the core of those “sad” eyes to the REAL pain, and fear that his behaviors speak in.
Cookie steals everything, food is NUMBRO UNO on the list…and no it is not that we have all food under lock and key. ALL of our kids’ bedrooms are stocked with Giant economy bags of cereal, for easy snacking and stress soothing. This is about his NEED to take, his compulsivity to have something that is someone else’s. His NEED to control.
I will NEVER forget, about five weeks ago, Hubs had bought old-fashioned, Sour Cream Chocolate doughnuts Friday night, for us to enjoy for breakfast Saturday morning.
3:00 a.m. and I hear Scoobs come in. Scoobs is type one diabetic, so he gets up to potty often in the middle of the night.
”yeah Scoobs, you O.K.?”
“Yes, but I am pretty sure Cookie is in the Bathtub right now, eating chocolate doughnuts.”
Sure enough, my hyper-vigilant little guy was in the bathtub, shower curtain pulled to hide, eating five scrumptious doughnuts. My first thought actually reminded me of the scene in Matilda…”the Trunchbull” making Bruce Bogtrotter eat a WHOLE chocolate cake…
A year or two ago, that may have been how things would have gone “You LIKE CHOCOLATE DOUGHNUTS EY”SONNY?......CONFESS!”….and maybe there was a teensy part of me that lived that fantasy…hey I’m not perfect.
But, his eyes. My little boys’ eyes were terrified. My lil’ chocolate fella,was covered in Chocolaty crumbs…I wiped him off lovingly, said “boy it must have been hard trying to sleep, knowing those doughnuts were there, huh buddy?”
I put him back to bed, and he went to sleep, AND SO DID I….months ago there would have been a scene. I would have been so mad, my adrenalin would have started pumping, I would have yelled, and shamed…cause I would have thought it would make me feel better, and scare him enough not to do it again. Fear doesn’t work, it just re-traumatizes. sooo...to that Trauma, I say "Zoink","Zap","Zing."
When we woke up, we woke up to hugs. Naturally, there were not enough doughnuts for everyone to have one, bummer. Did he ever steal a doughnut again, nope, not since..will he? Probably. Did it ruin our night and morning, nope. Did he learn anything? Absolutely, he was sad he didn’t have a doughnut that morning…and I pulled him away later and asked him if he noticed, if anyone else felt sad about the doughnuts like he did.
With my kids that have experienced trauma, they are not empathetic. The world does not relate to them in “how, other people feel.” It is a “how they feel, and what THEIR IMMEDIATE NEEDS, sometimes warped, full of holes logic mythology” works, and if it has that has kept them alive this long, they are going to keep on keeping on in that cycle.
So I join Crazyland long enough to speak their language. I have to relate to their feelings first, and then ask them if 'they think so-and-so felt that way too?'...THAT IS THE ONLY WAY I CAN EVEN BEGIN TO GET MY KIDS TO RELATE, OR ACKNOWLEDGE OTHER PEOPLES FEELINGS….sometimes it works ..Often times I am met with a cold hard stare. They don't get it.
Worst things Cookie has taken:
Ripped up $40 cash
My ID (still MIA)
Scoobs Medical diabetic kit
Bugs MP3 player
The rubber part of my faucet (it now leaks)
ALL of my FORKS (they were missing for 3 weeks)
My debit and credit cards
Any food item you can imagine….
Saturday I could not find my phone…..here is the remnants of what I found.
Here is the darling face I encountered when I simply asked if he had seen it?
Guilt, shame and stress….fake tears…are his next weapon, ”if I act REALLY sad, and SWEAR that I did not take it, maybe she will back off and follow another lead.”
I did back off….and changed my approach. I gathered the youguns and announced, “Whoever finds ALL of the parts of Mommy’s phone, can earn a quarter”.
And gosh darn….you would never believe who showed up with my phone….and all I had to say was….”Next time Cookie, how bout you just ask for the Quarter…and leave Mama’s phone alone”. “O.K. Mom”.
Many will argue he didn’t get a real “punishment”…in love and logic world, maybe not. But, there is no way (right now) for his brain to process a BIG punishment, right now the biggest message I can give this little guy is, “My Mama knows me, she knows I steal, and lie, and she still loves me, and did not give me away, even though I do bad things.” I have to have that connection and trust built, before we add the next level. It is the foundation that is lacking.
Let’s be honest. I deep down believe,his compulsion, his NEED…is an addiction. It is such a deep seated fear, it is chemical. His brain reacts to the endorphins released when a compulsion is fed.
We have to heal, before we can teach. Screw the light bulb in, before we can expect light.
Tonight Cookie brought in a “new tool” to his bag-o-tricks. He brings me packages, or stuff “he finds”…that “somebody” got into. Tonight it was the case of the Ramen Noodles being stolen out of the Food Storage Room. BLECH!
So I shrugged my shoulders and said….
So moral of the crime fighting?
ROBBN’ you can have all the Superpowers you need baby boy, cause the Momenator loves you ,and knows BOTH your weaknesses, and most IMPORTANT…. your SUPER strengths! Together we can beat ("POW", "ZONK") the evil Professor R.A.D.
I LOVE YOU FOREVER!
P.S. If ya'll want to read an AWESOME post on Attachment and R.A.D. check out my friend Diana's newest Blogtastic post here.