I sometimes visit a site called chask.org.... in a big way I support their mission, which is to find a new home for these kids without putting them through additional trauma of public foster care; but post like the one below and so many of the others that end up there just continue to make me think; just home many of these kids are truly being hurt by the dx of RAD; it is like some quack can say the kid has RAD, and low a behold it is okay to give up on them... that part of the whole mess really makes me sick
5-year-old Frazer needs a very experienced family
Frazer was born November 15, 2004 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. She was born to a single mother who later died of AIDS when Frazer was 2 1/2. Frazer is HIV positive. Frazer's grandparents were able to raise her for another year before they placed her in an orphanage where they could manage her HIV+ status.
Since Frazer has been in the United States, she has had her tonsils and adenoids removed as well as extensive dental work. She has also had quarterly visits with an infectious disease specialist who monitors her HIV status. So far, she has been really healthy and doesn't require the HIV medicine - yet.
Frazer was horribly sexually abused in Ethiopia. She is presently acting-out the behaviors forced on her, including fondling, oral and predatory style behavior. She also self stimulates under stress. She was placed in a respite home for all of April, 2010 and acted out toward 4 younger children in that home. Transitions and changes make her anxious which seems to magnify her sexually acting out. This 5-year-old girl is desperately in need of a family that can help her work through these searing memories and move on.
In January of 2010, Frazer was diagnosed with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). For RAD, she has been seeing a specialized RAD therapist, has been doing horse riding therapy and just recently started attending a specialized school for kids with behavioral issues
RAD is a very confusing disorder for those who aren't familiar with it. To the outside world, Frazer is very engaging, cute, bubbly, and charming. In reality, all these behaviors are a form of manipulation that is brought on by past trauma and her need to survive. The manipulation is a form of control that keeps her safe in her own mind. As opposed to most RAD cases, Frazer is not destructive or violent. She is the opposite - "sticky sweet" and "sappy sad" and emotional. With the RAD, Frazer is not deeply attached to anyone or anything.
Frazer is very bright and intelligent. She picked up English in 3 months. She has the ability to be very nurturing and intuitive. She loves to dance and sing... and we consider these to be natural talents. She is hyper-vigilant when it comes to her environment. She often "listens" and understands, even when you don't think she is paying attention. Being that most of her positive qualities stem from the RAD diagnosis, we believe with the right treatment, these qualities will turn out to be her "real" personality and greatest strengths.
On occasion, we have seen the "real" Frazer. She is screaming inside to be a "good kid" who wants to love a family. Her past trauma is just preventing that from becoming a reality at the moment.
Our Expectations for Frazer's new family:
1. Frazer's new family needs to be educated in RAD and understands boundaries and limits.
2. With her sexualized behavior, it is un-safe for her be around younger children and even children her own age or a little older. She needs to heal from the trauma she's faced, by not giving her opportunity to re-enact when under stress.
3. Older siblings (no siblings under the age of 13) would be good to have.
4. Everyone in the family (and extended family and church family) needs to be educated and understand what having a sexually traumatized child around means. The family needs to be an "experienced" family with the resources and willingness to provide the therapy and tools Frazer needs to heal.
5. Frazer may not be "safe" in a standard school system right away.
As a placement family, we are only interested in the best interests for Frazer. We are open to communicating with potential adoptive parents who we feel could be a good match for her. We are dedicated to a smooth transition and even help down the road as needed if it is within our means.