Last week was not a good week for me. I have a lot going on in my life right now, and I could handle the surface stuff if I was not getting triggered on a regular basis. It feels as if I cannot overcome one trigger before another knocks me off my feet again.
My seven-year-old son has ADHD, which causes him to have poor impulse control. His first medication has already stopped working, so we are in the process of trying a second medication. This whole experience has been very triggering to me.
For some reason, I have a difficult time separating my son from my inner child. I know logically that my son is not my inner child, but whenever I feel out of control in what is going on in my son’s life, I have a difficult time separating out his issues from my own emotionally.
For example, my son is seven years old, which is the same age that I was when I was vaginally raped for the first time. Because of this, his 7th birthday triggered me. I felt that I was free falling emotionally but did not know why.
Last week, the doctor told me not to medicate my son so his body could rest between medications. My son’s behaviors have been wild, and this triggers me because I fear that I cannot keep him safe. With no impulse control and hyperactivity, you can imagine the challenges in keeping a child physically safe.
On top of this, the doctor’s office did not fax over necessary paperwork for my son to receive the medication at school, so I had to make three separate trips to the doctor’s office last week (which is across town) to get this taken care of. This also triggered me into believing that my son was not “safe” because his doctor was not “protecting” him.
In my head, I know that my son is safe. Nobody has ever abused him, and he has me to keep him safe. However, in my heart, I have trouble separating out the two. When I see that I cannot “control” his safety (such as having to rely on others to medicate him), I feel unable to keep him safe, which triggers my own issues of being unable to keep myself safe as a child.
I can look at all of this logically and understand why I am reacting the way that I am, but understanding this does little to soothe the wounded child inside. It has been real challenge lately.
Photo credit: Lynda Bernhardt