Sometimes I can't say how I really feel, because I chose to adopt child 4 therefore it's my responsibility to cope. Although I have a wonderful support network I am aware that they don't always "get" where I am coming from. How can they, they haven't completed the training I have or live the sometimes very long days that I live.
I also think that we tend to hide away from the realities of the damage poor parents, the courts, social services - the system has on children in care. We tell ourselves that these children are better off fostered, adopted or in care and then avoid looking at what these children have suffered. If a child loses a parent to illness we view their loss in a very different way than we do those children removed from their parents. I don't think we should, both children have suffered a traumatic bereavement and we need to address the issues of bereavement just as much with children in care as those who have a parent that has died.
Now that child 4's speech is maturing, he is able to articulate his fears better, last week he became very upset at nursery saying "my mummy has forgotten me" yesterday he asked me when he was going home - we were sitting at the kitchen table, today he asked "are you my mummy?" Sometimes he is just so angry, full of real rage, he doesn't like anyone taking something from him, he reacts by hitting and kicking.
I often don't really comment on his behaviour anymore as the general response is, well he's two or it's just terrible twos and so on. I know that some of the behaviour is normal two year old stuff but a lot isn't. A year ago he was moved from his long term foster carers into emergency care, the trauma of the event must be deep seated and could explain his unsettled behaviour at the moment. He has a lot to lose now, a family of siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. He has a dog, a cat and chickens. He has lots and lots of little friends and adoring teenagers who play with him and take care of him. He attends a nursery he loves and has favourite places to visit - the farm, the beach and the secret garden. It shouldn't really be any surprise that he over reacts when he doesn't get his own way he just must be so full of fear and anger that he doesn't know what to do.
As I write this I recognise the need to be able to share my fears even on the days or maybe more importantly on the days that I am not coping. I need to sit and explain, educate those I rely on to where I am, what I think is happening. They don't need to do anything, probably just listen to me offer a shoulder and share a bottle of wine.