One of the (not so) fun things about raising a RAD is trying to stay one step ahead of them at all times. Actually, you need to be two steps ahead if you hope to keep any semblance of sanity. Since RADs can be ever so sneaky, they are masters at hiding things they don’t want you to find. Of course, this applies to any teenager, not just RADs! One of the things we’ve had to do on a regular basis is go through our RADs room looking for contraband. Think about all the wonderful hiding places there are! So, in order to be helpful I have put together a list (with the help of other RAD parents over at the Attachment Support Forum ) of hiding places that our RADs have used. Some of these weren’t surprising to me. Others? I never would have thought about them! Some of these parents put prison guards to shame..
So without further ado, here is a list of places to check when tossing your childs room:
Bed frames, any hollow part of a head or foot board
Look for slits in the seams of a mattress or box springs,
between the mattress & box springs
also look for the lining of the box springs to have been loosened to
provide a hiding place
In boxes or storage bins under the bed
Check the "legs" of plastic storage modules or cubes
Look in shoes, especially the toes, and again, especially if under the bed
Look in dirty socks left around, or if stuffed in shoes
Check pockets of clothing in hanging in the closet
Check to make sure a baggie isn't hung on the hanger with a clothing item hung over it
Check to make sure moldings haven't been loosened and contraband hidden
Check drawer bottoms by removing the drawer completely and ensuring
nothing is taped to the bottom
also check the inside of the dresser unit with the drawers removed, as
well as under the dresser and behind any mirror
check lamps. Some have a paper or felt bottom that easily comes off and
is not noticed as the lamp sits on it. Inside of some lamps this area is hollow.
check to make sure screws are tight on switch boxes, outlet boxes and
lighting fixtures as they make a good hiding place
Check to make sure smoke alarms in bedrooms have the battery in place, and not something else.
Check inside electronic devices, especially those that can run ac/dc and are plugged in. The storage compartment for the batteries or alternately, the cord, are great stashes. Also check to make sure the device isn't "cracked" open. Inside them is a great stash
Look for "Strings" coming out of openings. Pull on the strings to see
what is attached
Check inside chapstick containers or Altoid and TicTac containers.
Make sure TicTacs ARE Tictacs
Check M&M, Skittles and PEZ or other candy containers to ensure that they in fact hold candy and not pills.
Check makeup and especially lipstick containers. Empty ones are often
used as stashes
Check bottles of cologne or lotion to ensure they don't have booze in
them, if you find an empty shampoo bottle in the bedroom, or mouthwash
bottle, sniff for booze rather than shampoo or mouthwash
Check trash containers for "lumpy" wads of foil or tissue that can contain pills, powder or gummy tarry substance
Check inside the clothes hanger rod if it's hollow
Also check the inside of closet ceilings for taped envelopes etc
Check that books are actually books, and not been razored out of the
middle of the pages to create a stash
Also check behind rows of books in the book case.
check that tampon carriers actually have tampons in them, also check
feminine "supply" boxes to ensure they have only supplies in them
If you find Eye drops, nose spray, or Hemmoroid ointment or suppositories,
suspect "sniffing" or "huffing"
If your child has "Whiteout" or "Canned Air" or any kind of spray can in their room, especially if they go through it quickly suspect huffing.
Check "tool" kits and makeup bags as well as art supply and craft kits to ensure they're what they appear
If you find blackened spoons, or blackened aluminum foil, look closer for evidence of other uses.
Make sure that Pens have ink cartridges in them and not a joint or pills or a "rock"
cdplayers....pills can sit quite nicely on a loaded (pun?) cd disc......
Make sure that all meds in the house are kept in a locked box or cabinet and that only the parents actually have the keys. Many times, kids get their drugs from the bathroom medicine cabinet
In bathrooms, check all liquid containers to ensure they contain the
labled liquid. Any clear booze such as vodka with some scope or Listerine in it takes on the appearance of mouthwash
Also watch for nite time liquids or vanilla extract bottles due to their alcohol contents
Check the toilet tank and tank lid for stashes as well as under any seat cover as nobody thinks to look there
Money can lie flat taped under a toilet lid...only works for stolen money
Check the toilet paper tube. Most are two pieces with a spring
inside, leaving plenty of room for a stash
Towel rack tubes are another stash as many are hollow
Make sure and check heating and air vents and cold air returns. If the
grills are loose or screws are missing they might be used as a stash
Also, make sure that carpet is stretched and tacked down, if it's loose or has "cut" places, usually under a bed or piece of furniture, the pad can be removed and a stash can be under the carpet and in a cut out section of the padding
The arms/legs or even heads on baby dolls (and action figures) are often
removable - revealing a hollow body inside.
Also any stuffed animal toy that has moving parts. There is usually a
battery compartment. When the moving parts stopped working, child threw
those away and used the extra space inside the stuffed animal to stash
things. These are easily identified by velcro closures.
Hand puppets have large cavities inside with nooks and crannies to hide
Tissue boxes. The rectangular ones. They take out the tissue and add
thngs then put the tissue back on top. It does not matter if the opening is on the top or down the side both work.
Inside of picture frames, between the pages of a calendar. CD cases, inside computer towers.
Look along the top of door frames and along the bottom of any door in the room as so many are hollow or can easily be carved out.
Gloves or hats are another favorite along the inside brim or in the fingers.
The tops and bottoms of venetian blinds. You can pull of the
little end tabs and hide stuff in the bottoms.
A 6 ft bookcase can be emptied silently and moved silently to find things underneath it.
*** Do not oil squeaky drawers. Squeaks are your friends at 3 am.****
Tucked between the layers of folded clothes. Inside pockets of folded
clothes. Some jackets have hidden inner pockets. Inside the coat or
Unused pads. They can open them, put pills in and reseal.
At the bottom of the dirty clothes hamper, under the dirty clothes.
In hall closet behind stored items rarely used; back of closet under the
'cubbies', in storage containers that you rarely look in e.g., holiday
Be sure to search your OWN stuff. Your purse hanging besides you makes a great place for someone to slip stolen candy into at the store and then retrieve it while you're busy putting groceries away.
Behind your own dresser. All child has to do is discreetly bend down and
grab it as they walk past the bedroom door.
School folders or binders with pockets or that are covered in plastic.
Tied into hair.
The hems of clothing. It's very easy to take a couple stitches out of the hem on the underside of a skirt or pair of pants.
Your plants...the stuff will be wrapped in a plastic baggie if needed and shoved down into the dirt.
Contact lens cases.
And Last but not least…
You will be AMAZED at what you find in the inside and on the outside of
your car. There are a zillion places to hide stuff in there. The ash
trays, the pockets, the space between the back and the seat, there's a
hollow space that can be pried off and used that surrounds the lock and
window controls, storage spaces built into the floor, there's light covers in there, floor pads, underneath the carpeting, in air freshener containers, in magnetic key containers that can be filled and then attached underneath the car (always get suspicious when kid drops stuff on the ground and has to kneel by the car to reach what looks like beside/under it), stuff shoved under the handle of the outside door, stuff wedged into the small bit of open area around the glass of the sunroof that you can feel into when you pull back the cover to expose the glass roof.
Is there anyplace we've forgotten? If your child has a favorite hiding place that isn't listed here, please share in the comments section below!