Monday, March 14, 2011

Triggers

One of Layla's big triggers is black men.  We obviously don't know all of her past, but the parts we do know usually involved a black man (since she is also black... or BROWN as she says).

We've been working on that trigger in therapy using EMDR therapy.  It's not 100% but by golly it is way better now.    When she first came we couldn't even take her to a store for fear of her being triggered into a full-on rage.

When I was in a store with her for the first 4 months at least, I would find myself panning the room and avoiding anyone with her skin tone.   That may seem strange, but a rage tantrum is not something any parent wants their child to experience.  When you have PTSD you are often subconsciously triggered by things you don't understand.  It could be a smell, a sound, a person, many things can trigger a child with PTSD.

I wrote all of that to write this.  Our fantastic friend we will call him "Uncle B" is a black man.  He's like a big teddy bear with a kind heart, and he is great with the girls.

Saturday, I had to film for my show, and the girls were with me because my husband was "teaching" some computer geeks that day (I wrote that for his entertainment).   So "Uncle B" entertained the girls while I filmed my scenes.  He showed them that if you color in tiny circles it is easier to stay in the lines.  My girls just really adore him.   He is a great male influence of their same race.   I am thankful to have someone like that for them to see, because prior to "Uncle B", there were not many black men they could look up to or trust.   When Layla first met him almost 5 or 6 months ago, she wouldn't talk or even sit near him.  Now it's like they are old pals!

So we're certainly seeing some progress there.

2 comments:

Last Mom said...

L considers herself to be "brown", too. She also considers African American people to be "brown". She's going to be excited to see your girls and say, "They are brown just like me!"

QuackenBaby said...

I can't wait!!! My L gets VERY UPSET when people call her black. She told a boy in her class, "My hair is black, my eyes look black, but my skin is BROWN!"

I'm going to the tanning bed, so soon maybe I will look a little "browner".