Sunday, 24 February 2013

A Matter of Trust

Sorry not to have posted here for so very long - I have lots to say but no time to write it all down!

However, something came up a couple of weeks ago that gave me pause for thought.  My daughter is approaching 25 years old now, so no longer a child and most of the time she behaves like a young lady should.  As an adult, we have to have a varied activity programme for her to take part in during the working week - partly to give her a good quality of life and keep her busy and give her a social life, and partly to enable me to go out to work.  One morning is taken up with a careworker coming in and making sure my daughter gets to go to places she fancies visiting - usually involving local garden centres, particularly those with a varied pet selection, a buit of shopping and perhaps a visit to a park to feed the ducks, weather permitting.  Simple pleasures but I know my daughter really enjoys her three hours out and about and plans it meticulously.  Therefore, you can understand that she might get upset should anything go awry.

I am pretty sure that all mothers feel nervous about leaving their child in the care of others.  I think I have said before about my anxiety every time a new carer is appointed - I have to quell the fear that they may be a raging axe murderer or human trafficker!  Our current careworker is fairly new, a few months now, and a lovely lady.  I personally have no problem with her at all.  However, we have had a couple of quiet serious hiccups from my daughter.  The first was over not being able to stop off at the nearest Sainsburys in order to buy a paper as they were running out of time before she had to come home.  Apparently this caused a bit of a meltdown and some rather bad behaviour on my daughter's part I am ashamed to say.  She is usually very placid and her bouts of temper are very few and far between - I'm talking an annual event. Of course she gets annoyed by things and can be a bit sulky or stubborn on occasion, but then can't we all.

The second occasion was a week later and we think due to the fact she had planned her morning and written it all down, talked about it with me, but had possibly got the names of the garden centres she likes to visit the wrong way round.  So when she got out of the car at the place she hasd said she wanted to go, it wasn't the place she actually did want to visit.  Apparently her mood radically changed and she was difficult to handle and very stroppy for pretty much the rest of the morning.

I don't blame the careworker, but obviously we have to monitor this situation very carefully over the coming weeks - I do not want my daughter to be unhappy, nor do I want this behaviour to become a habit, which is a strong possibility. 

My point is, it is very difficult to reach a happy medium when leaving your child in the care of someone else.  You may be fine with the carer and see nothing wrong with them, but you have to take into account that your child may not feel as comfortable about it.  If your child has difficulty in vocalising their feelings, as my daughter most definitely has, then it is easy for the situation to get out of hand through their sheer frustration. What is construed as bad behaviour is actually a very loud protest that something is not going well and they don't like it.  It is never wise to get complacent - many years ago my daughter used to go to a lovely family for a coupole of weekends per month.  Little did I know she was very unhappy doing this as they had about 5 children of their own plus took in another little girl on the same weekends, and my daughter just hated all the comings and goings involved in a large family's life.  She made her feelings known by writing a letter to her LSA at school begging her to tell me not to send her there any more.  You can imagine how bad I felt that I hadn't noticed her feeling this way - but then she had given no outward indication.

We have a different lady this week- I think the care organisation are trying someone new out to see if the match is better.  Fingers crossed it isn't that axe murderer!

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