So while my urchins were away on their sleepover with Auntie H. Auntie H. noticed all the bruises on KT's legs. Now if you go back through my archives you can read the post on stairs so you will know what really happened. Anyway, so Auntie H. innocently inquires as to her contusions and KT's response is...with emotion and tears I might add 'my mommy beats me'.
And then she went into a long list of infractions supposedly committed by me. Ok one was true but I owned up to that one. The rest were exagerated beyond what you could conceivably believe to be the truth. This should not shock you or me, in fact and unfortunately, this is a common occurence among foster and former foster children. It's just catches you so off guard when it happens to you. Although the previous day, something similar had just happened to a friend of mine. I guess it was our wake up call. After awhile you start to think that they are just normal everyday kids, which really...they aren't. As parents of these children we need these wake up calls because it reminds us of how broken these kids are. How their need for attention, drama or the escape of family life is so high that at times they create these stories. What's even more sad, when they are saying them I think they actually believe them.
So this is how I handled this: Very calmly I said,
'So KT let's see these brusises you showed Auntie H.' With a smirk she rolls up her pant legs. Sure enough, there they were.
"And you got these bruises from me?"
Yeah, that's what I thought. "So KT do you want me to demonstrate the difference between a beating and swat, so you'll know next time? Because I am not sure you understand the difference."
KT's eyes became really wide "NO NO NO NO NO." Yah I was pretty sure that she did know the difference at that point.
"KT you need to make sure what you say is very accurate...because lying about this could have VERY serious consequences." End of discussion. Very calmly I walk away.
KT responds "What does accurate mean?"
If I could spell the gutteral noise that came from me after her response I would type it but I can't. I find the lack of vocabulary of my third grader incredibly frustrating. I know she knows what accurate means, and even if she didn't she could use the context of the question to figure it out. But remember, I just asked her a question and it was sort of threatening, so with child who has PTSD....her brain will just shut down. And on top of that, she had to say something to make the conversation continue because she is getting my full attention. Her life absolutely depends on her keeping me busy with her, she thinks. Now I would hand her a dictionary, but my past experience indicates that she will then ask me how to spell it. So I say "IT MEANS IF YOU LIE YOU WILL GET IN BIG FAT TROUBLE"...So much for staying calm.