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The kid who pushes you away

Date: November 30th, 2012
By: Polly Bath

Watch this video [1:39] for a tip from Polly on showing up for highly emotional, abused, or neglected students who push you away, day after day, no matter what you do.

Kids who are highly emotional, kids who are abused, neglected – all kinds of stuff that we see – those are kids who will push you away before you can push them away. Why is that? They have to protect themselves, they have to control the situation, because for many of these youngsters, all through their lives, they haven’t had control over anything. So if you’re there every day and they keep pushing you away and swearing at you and saying “Get away from me,” and “I don’t like you,” what’s the best thing that you can do? Keep coming back. Even if you just show up in the room.

I told a teacher two days ago, she said, “But I just tried to sit next to him.” I said, “Don’t sit next to him. You just walk in that room at that same time every day and say, ‘Hey, how’re you doing, Anthony?'” and you just keep on walking. But you show that kid that you’re going to be there, every single day.

Eventually, he’s going to let you sit down next to him. But he has to control the situation in order to protect himself emotionally. Emotional disturbances are so difficult because we can’t see them. Having specialized professionally in that for years, [I can tell you that] it’s such a protective mode that our brains go into to protect ourselves from being hurt.
Click on my video above for more.