‘Muppets Most Wanted,’ therapy intake and marshmallow triumph

Princess spent the night at BFF’s Monday night.  Hubster’s childhood best friend was in town and we had dinner.  She said hello, gave him a high five and a hug then was thrilled to be allowed to escape to BFF’s.  She’s extremely shy and has high social anxiety.

Hubster was so cute about his friend coming.  “He hasn’t been to my house since 5th grade!” he said.

I picked both girls up at BFF’s yesterday morning.  Princess had plans to spend the night with one of my Orlando retreat friends an hour away to help her care for her small children, but she chickened out.   She told me she wasn’t feeling comfortable and wanted to back out first thing in the morning.  I complimented her for telling me instead of letting it eat at her all day and then exploding when it was time to go.  My friend’s kids had been looking forward to Princess sleeping over, but she understood.

I took the girls to see “Muppets Most Wanted.”  I was really disappointed.  I thought they really phoned it in.  The girls didn’t care for it much either.

12466423865 9c815b94ef z Muppets Most Wanted, therapy intake and marshmallow triumph

Then we went for Princess’s therapy intake appointment.   She was nervous about it, but didn’t give me a problem about going.  They got us in quickly.  BFF hung out in the waiting room.

I wasn’t impressed by the intake counselor.

At. All.

He had little personality and even less tact.  He didn’t do anything to try to make Princess more comfortable or lighten the mood and he definitely didn’t take any signs from her.

Hey dude, if the kid is having trouble answering questions like ‘how old are you?’ what makes you think she’s going to answer ‘were you sexually abused?’????

But we got through – after the intake counselor made a snide comment that he sure hopes she talks more to her therapist or the last 45 minutes was pointless.

It will be another few weeks before we get in to the therapist.

As we were walking to the car, Princess told me a couple things I said hurt her feelings.

1.  “You said I had two friends.  That made it sound like I only had two friends, like no one likes me.”  (“Oh, Sweetie, I’m sorry it sounded that way to you.  What I meant was you have two really great friends, which is awesome.  Not everyone has two strong friendships like you have with BFF and Shy Girl.”

2. “It hurt my feelings when you told him my anxiety is an 8 out of 10.  It’s not that high.  An 8 sounds really bad.   I wish you would have told him a 7 or less.  That sounds better.”  (“Well, that was a tough one, because when it’s high it’s VERY high, but it’s not like that all of the time.  We can explain it more to the therapist when we meet her.”)

Then we stopped by the store because BFF’s soon-to-be-stepfather commissioned Princess to make him a strawberry pie and they needed cornstarch.  (She’s becoming quite famous for her baking.  The ladies at the retreat were addicted to her salted caramel brownies.)

She picked up a bag of giant marshmallows.  I simply said, “No.”  She laughed, put them down and kept going.

BFF whispered to me, “She never does that!  I thought there was going to be a tantrum!”

So even though “Muppets Most Wanted” was a letdown, there was a lot of good in the day.  The girls were pleasant and kind to each other all day.  Princess talked to me about things that were bothering her instead of acting out.  They baked a great looking strawberry pie.  And Princess accepted a “no” with grace.  There wasn’t even any begging for treats at the movies!

Hopefully we can do it again today!

I give spring break a big thumbs up!

Have you had it yet?

 

 

Comments

  1. says

    And you know, any girl with a history of sexual abuse is going to feel really comfortable telling that to a man, too. Hopefully he got all the crummy care out of the way and things will just go up from there :-)

    I wish I got a Spring break! But, I’d just settle for Spring. We woke up to 2 inches of snow this morning!

  2. Liesel says

    I’m so proud of all of you…

    And thank you for the last article about therapy and also about your and princess’ feelings here about the intake officer…. In your observations about the intake officer, you give me hope that there are some basics that can be learned in order to hurt less feelings. And in the last article about therapy, I think it was very interesting to learn that everything has to be done in its time, also therapy, and that it might be counterproductive if done at the wrong moment.

  3. Liesel says

    Everything you write inspires me so much hope that things can be done about big, negative feelings, in the long run.
    I love it, how you stand behind princess, how you are at her side, how you put yourself in her shoes and take her side instead of critisizing her.

    I think every parent should learn this.
    They should learn that there are so many things their children don’t do on purpose, to spite them, but just because they can’t help themselves. And let’s face it: adults too often can’t help themselves. Not everything they do is well thought over, appropriate and rational…
    And I love knowing that there are people like you out in this world.

  4. Helen says

    I love hearing how she’s made so much ground in being able to communicate with words, to be able to say ‘that hurt my feelings’ and talk it through – magic. Learning how to use language to help is something I try hard to do and it’s a real motivator to see how well you’ve been able to help Princess handle stress through teaching it and practicing it with her.

  5. k says

    wow–Princess is amazing. i’m so proud that she told you about her problems ahead of time and accepted the no so well, and kudos to you and her for maing it through that intake-that kind of snide comment would have lost me completely. i either would ave melted down or more likely would just never have gone back, but you all stuck it out and kept it togeter. i hope the actual therapist is much better.

    she is really coming so far. you are both amazing

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