Getting the Right Support
…children like Jason truly want to behave but are often missing the skills that allow them to do so…
While he was hospitalized, we were often blamed for the reason Jason was out of control. We knew that we were not and were supported in that belief when we began working with Adoptive Families Together – a group that helped us access care for Jason from Psychiatrists and support groups for our family. Finally, we had found a group of people who understood what Jason (and we) were experiencing.
We also began bringing Jason to a therapist who specialized in a model of psychosocial treatment researched and advocated for by Dr. Ross Greene called Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS). Dr. Green is the author of many highly-acclaimed books including The Explosive Child and Lost at School as well as numerous articles and scientific papers which highlight the effectiveness of the CPS model; the classification of youths with social, emotional, and behavioral challenges; and the outcomes of student-teacher compatibility.
By the time Jason entered his later elementary school years his support team and I felt like we were finally making progress. Although he still experienced issues with social skills and school work, we were seeing steady improvement. His 4th and 5th grade teachers worked with us to try and implement a framework that would model good behavior and understanding. He did still get in trouble – but less and less. We knew (through our experience with CPS and other specialists) that children like Jason truly want to behave but are often missing the skills that allow them to do so. Alternatively, mistreatment earlier in life may have created learned skills that contradict better behaviors. However, when these children are shown understanding and are guided in certain ways, these behaviors greatly improve.
Unfortunately, the forward progress slowed as Jason entered middle school.