The void inside of me

We met with Dr. Patti tonight.  The mission was to speak with Gavin about the issues with his behavioral choices.  This conversation was very honest and I mean very honest. 

Basically, Dr. Patti said that Gavin is simply not capable of caring about anyone or anything but himself and what he wants. 

As horrible as it is to hear that,  it’s absolutely the truth.

The conversation cover a great many things involving our current family situation and how his choices are hurting everyone in the house. 

Towards the end of the meeting the conversation took a turn. 

Dr. Patti wanted Gavin to know that it has become clear to her that he is no longer capable of living with his family. 

I had been stressing out about how to broach this subject with him. 


Sometimes though, it’s best to just be honest and upfront, even if it’s uncomfortable. We explained everything to him about what we were working on as far as residential care goes and he started to sob. 

It was extremely awkward because he was crying but there was nothing behind it.  I know that sounds really weird but I dot know how else to describe it.

We explained that he’s just not capable of worrying or caring about how his choices affect us.

Dr. Patti told him that it doesn’t make him a bad person it just means he’s built differently. She also said that she truly believes that he loves is to the very best of his ability.

I thought that was a great way to think about it. To Gavin, love doesn’t mean the same thing as it does to us but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t love us,in his own way.

Having said that, just because he loves us to the best of his ability doesn’t mean that it’s healthy or safe. 

Let me try to explain this in another way. This is a bit dramatic but was a very, very real concern for a long time.  We show that we love Gavin by doing everything we do for him.  Gavin may be showing us he loves us by not trying to kill us in our sleep. That’s exaggerated of course but that’s probably the easiest way to think about this.

Gavin eventually went back to playing and eating his snacks like nothing had happened.

He’s also carried on as though nothing has happened since we left as well.  It’s a bit disconcerting to be honest but at the same time, it par for the course. 

I’ll let Lizze share her feelings on this but I have to be really honest and say that I don’t know what to feel right now.  It broke my heart to see Gavin crying but at the same time, there was nothing behind it.

So at the moment, I think that I’m kind of a mess because it’s become so clear to me that the Gavin I knew and loved, truly died many years ago and will never return.

I think I’ve been holding out hope for all these years and that’s what’s gotten me through all this. 

Now I feel like the floor has been yanked out from underneath me and I can find my footing. 

Dammit, I hate this whole thing. 

My heart has been broken in a way that will never truly heal.

Now I have to look forward to explaining to the boys that there big brother has to move away, at least for awhile.  That will hopefully take place down the road.  However, I would not be surprised if Gavin says something to his brothers, even though we made it very, very clear that he was not to speak of this to them and if they find out from him, he’s in big trouble.

Sometimes I really hate that the powers that be, felt that I was the perfect person for this job.

I make so many mistakes and all it makes me do is want to stress eat. Wendy’s sounds so good right now but it will not fill the void inside of me.  🙁

This was posted via WordPress for Android, courtesy of Samsung’s Galaxy S III. Please forgive any typos. I do know how to spell but auto-correct hate me.

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Rob Gorski

Full time, work from home single Dad to my 3 amazing boys. Oh...and creator fo this blog. :-)
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@Kibblet Very well spoken. I really appreciate your words and I completely understand. We do anything and everything for our kids. 🙂


@OnyxPanthyr Thanks Onyx 🙂


@kat13 Thanks so much Kat 🙂


@Hopeful Mom I love your screen name. Thank you for the thoughts and prayers. 🙂


@GenevieveHorrall Thank you so much for your words of support. I really try to take care of myself and even cut myself some slack. It sorta goes against my nature. I'm more inclined to cut Gavin slack before I do so for myself. Crazy right?


Oh wow.  I say your latest post and had to come back through your post to find out what was going on.  So very to hear this. None of us will be able to fully understand, but know that there are many here that will be praying for you and sending positive energies to you and your family.  Just keep one thing in mind during this time in your life, to be gentle with yourself as well.  Sometimes we feel we need to be the strong ones and not allow ourselves to experience or deal with our emotions, it just seems to be easier to push them down.  Make sure that you give yourself time even if is just a few minutes at the end of the day to really let what ever you need to out.  Seriously hope that this experience is quick and that treatment will add the relief your family needs and that Gavin will thrive and flourish there.

Hopeful Mom

So sorry to hear this. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.


So sorry to hear about it, but that answers a question I posted on your later post. 
It is truly heart breaking, and I just can't imagine what you guys are going through. Knowing that Galvin's situation, his tears were perhaps due to fear of upcoming change and too many unknowns from his perspective. Nonetheless, I really hope he is still capable to some emotional attachment to his best capability as well!!
I just hope this will be over soon for all and you all will be able to take a deep breath! I just can't imaging what you all going through on the daily basis. You and Lizzie are very strong people even though it might be hard for you guys to see it, but you really are!!


So, so sorry.  🙁


Thinking of you and your family through this hard time!! Sending hugs and prayers!!


@SarahBolier thank you so much 🙂

gina valley

Raising a child with RAD is very  difficult.  When there are other  children in the house it is doubly so.  So many tough choices as you try to do what is best for all of your children.  
I will continue to pray wisdom and comfort for all of you.


@gina valley thank you very much for your kind words of support. 🙂

gina valley

Raising a child with RAD is very  difficult.  When there are other  children in the house it is doubly so.  So many tough choices as you try to do what is best for all of your children.


im so deeply sad reading this. many hugs to you and the family. praying for residential to help Gavin and heal the family too. 


@KarimanElgoharyShama thank you very much 🙂


I know a family that has two of their three sons in residential care.  I knew little about their life, just that their boys were there.  About a month ago, I saw the parents and the three boys out at the diner, so happy, just like everyone else there in the diner. I don't know if it was just a weekend visit home, or if they are back home 'for good'. (They are older now so they may even be independent.)  Given a choice between having a miserable family 7 days a week, but having them at home every day, or having them gone most of the week, but being happy at home AND having wonderful family bonding time together, I would have to choose the latter. But then, I also said, if someone told me that my son would be able to talk and live a 'normal' life if I just sent him off to the South Pole or something for a year but I couldn't contact him, I would do it, even if it killed me inside.  I would probably say, too, that if he could 'be ok' but I would have to give him up forever, I would have to let go.  It would probably push me over the edge and I'd never be ok, but he would. That's what parenting is.


How heartbreaking for you all…  


Wow I'm in tears.  no words. cyber hugs


It almost seems like it'd be a better idea to tell the other kids before Gavin can, that way when you tell them you know the first things they hear will be the right information and not skewed. As hard as it will be, it might be for the better. That's not up to me to decide though of course. -hugs-


 @Silachan @lostandtired  I have to agree with Sila–tell the boys as soon as you can–because you know that Gavin is going to sabotage and undercut you if you don't!  And this is not saying he doesn't love you and Lizzie, but that this is how he functions in the family unit.  You give a direction to NOT do something, his function is to figure out how he can get around your directive. He likely doesn't think of this as disrespectful or undercutting your authority as Dad, but rather as a test to see how smart he is.  So to keep him in check, you need to share the information with the Es in as mild and honest a manner as possible.  The important thing with the Es is to make sure that they understand that this IS NOT a punishment, but like a very long doctor's appointment where Gavin will be getting the treatment and help he needs that you cannot get for him at home. That will stop the spin that Gavin will use to increase the anxiety levels of the Es by making them think of this as a punishment and they are next to get "shipped out" away from the family.  
I absolutely understand where you are.  Last fall I started down the road to get my younger girl placed in residential treatment.  The guilt and anguish that I felt and still (to some extent) feel even now is allayed by seeing the difference in our home.  There is no sense of anxiety in the children or me and no sense of having to walk on egg-shells as well as watch every word that comes out of my mouth.  When she visits the atmosphere changes, but the rest of us work really hard to NOT let her come back and drive us all back to where we were last fall.  So, Rob, don't try to delay his admission to residential care.  That is where he so desperately needs to be.  That is the only way you can bring peace to your soul and the family's soul.  Let Gavin have the help he is crying for. Love him enough to let him go.  

Suzi Satterfield

 @Batty  @Silachan  @lostandtired  I have to agree with the above comments.  Don't let him have the opportunity to tell his brothers before you can.  I really, truly hope that this opportunity helps Gavin get on better footing and for his brothers to improve without Gavin sowing the seeds of discord whenever possible.  Best wishes to all of you.


So sorry for you and Lizze,I can not imagine how you both feel,Now that it has been addressed I pray that it will be soon for placement , you are the perfect person for the job,you love Lizze and the boys,and God has used imperfect people since the beginning of time,Can I suggest a book,The Shack it about faith and tragedy and I found the book when it was right time,and it helped me forgive myself and dare I say It helped me find and forgive God . Try to take care of yourself,and try (yes this laughable but try to protect your sleep ) everything is harder when your bone tired.I pray for your family every day, and i am hoping for better days to come.


 @ChrisCrane Thanks. I really appreciate your thoughts and prayers. I'll check out the book when I can. 🙂


 @lostandtired  @ChrisCrane I highly recommend it.  I found it at a time when I needed it too.  I think it is by William Young.  But I could be wrong. 


I know what it's like to live with this kind of pain.  I just want you to know that you are not alone, and that my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.


 @RebeccaNastasia Thank you. My thoughts are with you as well. No one should have to experience this. 

Lauri Golonka

I'm at loss for words…. I can't begin to imagine what you all are going through.  It burns me to the soul to know that this child was affected in a way so horribly due to abuse/neglect.  


 @Lauri Golonka Thank you. We fought so hard to protect him and did everything we could do to help him through this. Even though we did everything we could, it still feels like we failed him. Thank you so much for your support. 🙂


Families come in all different ways. I have one child that dies not live here with us. He can handle it about two weeks before he really would like to throw his siblings off a cliff. Its alright. His sibs understand and it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. Don't stress too much, kids are very resilient and understnad far more than we give them credit for. 🙂 Glad things are progressing well with Family Council.  I did not have a lot of luck with funding for my guy and did hte next best thing which has been an amazing thing for my family and even the "problem child" You will be amazed at how your relationship with Gavin will change and become much more pleasurable.


 @MariaHall thank you. I'm not sure how things will go with family council but I'm trying to remain hopeful that we've earned enough credit to have something finally work out in our favor. 🙂


Rob, I know what you mean when you say "there was nothing behind it." Marc could give Academy Award winning performances with tears, and pleading that would be worthy of any Oscar.  Sadly, that is all it is – a performance. 
We found the best way to deal with Marc was to be brutally honest. I can't say that would work with every RAD kid, but it seemed to work with Marc.  He didn't always believe that we would do some things, so follow through is very important. 
My thoughts are with you my friend.


 @Carlyoung I think this is so hard for people to imagine. Honestly, it's still hard for me to believe and I'm living it. We learned a long time ago that empty threats are worthless and that we have to be extremely consistent and show absolutely no weakness. 🙁
Thanks Carl, I know your heart is heavy as well.