Reactive Attachment Disorder – attach to everyone but family.

"The mother"
“The mother” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We have known that David has Reactive Attachment Disorder for a while.  It is a fact of life.  In the current residence, David had been doing well.  Until.

About 10 days ago, David’s primary left employment at his facility.  David evidently was pretty attached to her. As his behaviors have gone down hill since she left.  He apparently likes his new primary, but is still coming to terms with the “loss” of his last primary.

Since the primary he attached to left, they have had to call in the Event Support Team a couple of times for David and put him on a modified plan.  He eats by himself with close supervision by the staff, among other things.  He is still doing well in school. At night, he has difficulty sleeping.

On one hand I am happy that David can establish relationships, close relationships to people.  It is nice to know that he has that ability.   The residence where he lives is supposed to simulate a family environment.  While I understand the logic, I find it to be something of a dysfunctional family at best.

I don’t hold out hope that he will ever form an attachment of any real kind to his family.  I can live with that.  As long as he is able to establish appropriate relationships with other people, I will consider it a success.  How I feel about my relationship, or the relationship of the rest of the family to David doesn’t really matter at this point.  What matters is that David is on his way to achieving a life goal.

He has to learn to deal with the loss of people in his life.  He has to learn how to recover on his own without letting his anger take control.  People are largely transient in the lives of others, unless there is a family involved, and even that can be transient.  Hopefully, he won’t let the fear of loss of healthy relationships dissuade him from establishing any type of appropriate relationship.  Friendships are difficult enough to nurture without having Autism or Reactive Attachment Disorder thrown into the mix.



2 Responses to Reactive Attachment Disorder – attach to everyone but family.

  1. You might want to look at the book, Creating Capacity for Attachment by Dr. Arthur Becker-Weidman and Deb Shell