The Parenting Club I Never Wanted To Join

On Monday I dropped my kids off with a friend and took a trip I never thought I would need to take. Have you ever been given access to a club that you never wanted to join? That was me three days ago.

I plugged a new address into my gps and I made my way to a therapist office to talk about my son. Scary terms and acronyms floating through my thoughts.

Hoarding.

OCD.

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I love him, but I don’t know how to help him. I feel helpless and envious of moms whose biggest concern is fighting over getting their child to wear a cute bow in her hair or how many ponies to rent for the birthday party (I don’t actually know anyone who rents ponies for birthday parties).

My days are filled with BIG emotions over things that I could never have guessed would be treasures: Rented DVD’s that need to go back, but he cannot part with. Packaging from a lunchable. Sunday School crafts. Things his siblings own and decide to throw away. Each item is mourned like a beloved friend or family member.

I feel guilty. I have spent a lot of time pleading for him to get it together and get over it. It’s garbage. I didn’t know his brain was not processing things the way a typical person does.

It’s exhausting to parent a child who is mourning deep losses several times a day.

I love him. I want you to love him. I don’t want you to label him. I don’t want you to be annoyed by him. “Normal” is gone and I’m missing it.

16 thoughts on “The Parenting Club I Never Wanted To Join

  1. <3 More moms get that than you realize. I've walked your path. Many therapies. Many tears, both theirs and mine. Confusion. Irritation. Rejection from friends. And I wanted others to know the little man I knew.

    You're not alone. And you certainly have my prayers.

    Much love!

  2. Parenting is so hard, Amy! Thanks for your honesty. What a wonderful job you’re doing as a mama in recognizing a problem and recognizing that it’s ok that you don’t know how to help your son. You’re a brave lady and we’re proud of you!

  3. Dear Friend
    Welcome to the club … i would have preferred that you didn’t have to join us but since you did, pull up a chair and have a seat. First off, allow your feelings — whether its grief, disbelief, anger, relief whatever — they are yours. This isnt easy for you or Ethan and I think it takes great courage to acknowledge the hard stuff and get help. You did that for your son, pat yourself on the back, you took the very first step. That is one of the hardest. I love you with all my heart and Ethan too! Know that you are being held up in prayer as you begin this journey.

  4. Amy,
    I miss the days Ethan would come into my office and tell me his silly jokes. We understand the great concern as a child goes through these difficult times. I remember as if it was yesterday the pain we felt when our son wept and said “why am I such a freak”. I hurts terribly when our children are caught up in these things, these cycles, that we can’t fully understand. My dear Amy, you, Nathan and Ethan are in our prayers constantly.

  5. Hi amy I dont know if you remeber me but I went to crown with you. We have a 10 year old son that has ocd, aniexty disorder and asd. He was diagnosed when he was 5. It is a hard road and feels lonely at times if you ever need to talk message me on face book and I can get you my number. Hang in there.

  6. It does get better. My daughter has OCD. God gave her to a very laid-back momma. It has been hard to realte at times. I didn’t recognize it as she became more insistant on things being done a certain way. I thought that I was a busy mom that needed to slow down and give her more. But more what? I swung from pushing her to move on to creating an environment that catered to her. It is a balancing act where the center of gravity moved everyday. Therapy (and medication) helped both of us. It helped her to see the world from both sides of the OCD. It helped her to work through some of the things that caused her OCD to ramp up. It helped me to nudge her when she needed it instead of pushing. It helped me to accomodate her in degrees rather than enable her OCD to thrive. I will send her to college in the fall and have my own level of anxiety about it. She is able to see what triggers the OCD and make adjustments to get through it. I will be 4-5 hours from her but I God will give me wings if I need to get to her. God is watching over my baby and your baby too.

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