Monday, September 11, 2006

Character: "Tammy"

"Tammy" came to us last week, and I wanted to get to know her a little bit before introducing her to you here. When I first met her she seemed a bit of a cipher to me, and I guess she still is.

She's 14, and I get the idea there is more in her background than they've told us (natch), but she seems so far to be a very nice girl. After dealing with "Josie", she seems preternaturally calm, quiet and unassuming. She enjoys quiet things like reading and playing games She has a history of cutting and has been judged by some to be a danger to herself (nobody else). We had three for respite this weekend, and the 7 and 8 year olds immediately decided she was the coolest person they knew (I, on the other hand, was "mister").

We met her mom, who struck me as a very strange lady but one who seemed to genuinely love her daughter...we weren't really told that much about the family situation but we were led to believe "Tammy" would be with us for at least a month and maybe longer.

On Saturday morning I got up and walked into the kitchen where she was sitting having breakfast. She looked up, smiled, and said "Hi, stranger." Those were the first words she spoke directly to me, I believe, and they seemed like strange ones. She had a small, friendly smile on her face as she said them, and I suppose she thought her comment was mildly amusing, as I guess it was. She said the same thing when I got home from work tonight. I was in a particularly jaunty mood, so I responded with a loud, boisterous "HI THERE!" I think I scared her a little with that one.

I don't even know if there will be many stories to tell about this one since she seems so withdrawn, but we know by now that that can certainly change quickly with familiarity, and anyway I thought I should introduce her--if for no other reason than to let you know that there is one more body now resident in Casa de Dan.


At 9:16 PM , Blogger FosterAbba said...

I think the biggest disservice CWS does to foster parents is the lack of information. There are times when they genuinely don't know background, but oftentimes they withhold information out of a misdirected sense of protecting the child.

Our home was ripped apart by our second foster child. She had Reactive Attachment Disorder, and it turned out the mental health folks withheld information from social services because they didn't want the child "labeled." Unfortunately, their attempts to protect the child caused her (and us) substantial emotional damage.

As for your shy new addition, familiarity may eliminate much of the silence, though it may not get rid of all of it. Our first placement, "Ana," was 15 when she arrived, and she was pretty silent at first. She did get more talkative, but in the end, she decided to run away rather than discuss what was bothering her.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home