Bad end to a bad week

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by JKF, May 10, 2013.

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  1. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    I go to get easy child/difficult child up at 6 this morning for school. He instantly starts complaining that he's tired and doesn't want to get up. Not the norm for him but it has happened a few times recently. I go into his room and as I'm looking around I notice toys everywhere. Now I know these toys were not there when he went to sleep last night because one of our rules is that he has to clean his room up before bed and I physically checked last night to make sure it was done. So I put two and two together and realized that he must be playing with these toys AFTER I tuck him in for the night. I asked him and he reluctantly admitted that - yes - he waits until we're asleep and then plays. Uggggh! What? And I now realize that this probably happens pretty frequently.

    I have to admit - I lost it. Screamed, took all of the toys out of his room, and gave him a swat (ok 2 swats) on the rear end. I really don't lose it like that much anymore but he's been pushing NONSTOP for over a week now. He was already in trouble and grounded for lying 3 times since Sunday. He was going to get privileges back today but nope.

    When I took him to school we calmly talked. He realizes why he's in trouble but what next? He really is a good kid and a really nice kid, but he'll push and push limits and boundaries until there are none left. He likes to see what he can get away with so we have to be constant and strict with him most of the time. His ICS teacher and I have a standing joke that he has a talent for zoning in on the weak - god help substitute teachers! LOL

    So - give me some advice wise warrior moms. How should I go about dealing with this? Perhaps some of this is typical teen stuff and I'm so caught up in difficult child land that I can't see that? I really don't know but I do know that I need new methods for calmly dealing with this stuff. I don't know how to move out of the "you're grounded and have zero privileges" pattern that we've been stuck in lately. I tell him all the time that I hate having to ground him and that I'd much rather he had every privilege available but when he acts poorly he gets grounded. This sucks for me too. Uggggh!!!!
     
  2. Bunny

    Bunny Active Member

    I think this is a pretty typical teen thing. Both difficult child and easy child have done this (easy child still does it!). I made a rule with difficult child that helped us because difficult child used to have a really hard time falling asleep. He had alot of trouble turning his mind off of he could relax and sleep. We would let him have two or three things on his bed. Toy, stuffed animal, book. They were his choice. If it was on his bed he could play with it to help him relax and sleep. He could not get off his bed to get anything else, so he needed to choose wisely.

    A funny aside to this. A few times difficult child was punished and had to sit on his bed. He would get angry and throw EVERYTHING off his bed. I just let him do it. Then he would say to me, "We'll, can I at least play with..." and ask for something that he just threw across the room. I would respond with, "Is it on your bed?" He would say no, and I would remind him of the rule: if it's on your bed, you can play with it. If it's not, tough luck. After a while he stopped throwing things off the bed!
     
  3. Dixies_fire

    Dixies_fire Member

    Having same issues. Hugs- I know it's frustrating.
     
  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    He's how old? and what dxes? (makes a difference in how I'd respond)
     
  5. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    IC - he's 12 and 1/2 and his diagnosis's are ADHD (diagnosis'd when he was 6) and Mood Disorder not otherwise specified (diagnosis'd within the last 6 months). He has regular psychiatric and neuropsychologist evaluations. He sees the psychiatrist once a month, the neuropsychologist once a year, and has therapy weekly. Since he started the medications for the mood disorder we've noticed a difference in his mood but he's still having problems with impulse control. When I ask 'why' he does certain things he says he doesn't know - he just does them without thinking.
     
  6. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Bunny - I love that idea! Letting him chose 3 things to keep with him. That way it also gives HIM some control over the situation. I think he'll respond well to that. Thanks!
     
  7. Bunny

    Bunny Active Member

    My son responds well when he is given control over things, too, which is why this idea helped him alot. I hope it helps.
     
  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I'd be addressing why he has trouble sleeping. Could be a range of things... from some sort of sleep disorder, to a degree of mental/emotional fatigue that makes sleep fitful at best. The "playing with toys" thing may be - in his view - better than laying awake half the night thinking about stuff and getting into worse knots.
     
  9. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Yes - I definitely need to figure out why he's not sleeping. I never realized it and maybe it's a new thing but definitely an issue. I feel bad about screaming like I did and swatting him on the butt this morning. I should have kept better control of my temper but it was 6 am and it's been a long week and he has been pushing boundaries every single day all week long. I will apologize to him later for my lack of control and talk with him again about solutions to his problem. He's definitely entering his teen years and I know I need to start giving him more control over things like this because I won't be there to "hold his hand" forever. It's just hard for me to let go of the control because I feel like if I do things will fall apart.
     
  10. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    been there done that... as in, still have to do some "hand-holding" and mine is a LOT older than yours.
    We needed 2 or 3 more dxes and two additional medications...
    We started with "just" ADHD, but... there was a LOT more going on.
    And ... this time of year is always the worst, if they have some sort of fatigue/sleep issue going on, because it seems to accumulate across the school year.
     
  11. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    I too would be most concerned about not sleeping part. I mean I assume you put him to the bed a bit before you go yourself (he certainly needs more sleep than adult) so either he is waking up middle of the night or he stays awake a long time after going to bed. People really should normally fall asleep rather quickly.

    Other thing I would work hard on would be not swatting him. I mean he is pre-pubescent boy who will soon grow like hay and be bigger than you are and have all that excess testosterone in his body. It really is a bad idea for you to have a relationship with any kind of physical aggression with him. If you keep swatting him a chance is that he may hit back when very out of control. And that will be a tough situation.

    Basic rule is never hit something bigger than you or soon to be bigger than you. It can turn ugly.
     
  12. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    The rule in our house is on weeknights he has to be showered and in his room by 8, he can read for an hour, and then lights out at 9. He gets up at 6 so that's 9 hours of sleep which he needs. I go to bed at around 11 and he's asleep (or at least acts like it) so I have a feeling he's waking up in the middle of the night.

    I agree 100% about not being physical. I haven't been in a very LONG time but today I snapped. It was so early and I was so tired and achy and he was tired and whining, but I know that's not an excuse. I know it was wrong. Being physical with someone only teaches that person to be physical with others. I know that and I regret losing my temper like that. I have printed out all of my anger management tips again to read and re-read because I feel like I'm going to be relying heavily on those skills for a long time to come.

    Like I said, I will talk with him again after school and hopefully we can come up with a solution that will suit us both. Maybe if he feels like he's got some control and I feel like I have some control we can meet happily in the middle.
     
  13. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I do know how much it can itch your hand just to swat them. Been there. I mean, really, sometime it feels like they would want to be slapped. No one behaves like that otherwise.

    Trying to find compromise sounds good. And maybe finding that compromise and letting things settle few days before tackling the not-sleeping/waking-up part? So that he will not feel so defensive any more and is maybe more honest about the sleep issue. They so easily lie when they are afraid they are in trouble and in the end you mostly want to just find out the truth about his sleeping troubles.
     
  14. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    I definitely think I'm going to let things settle down for a few days and "start over" come Monday. You're right about the response thing. He definitely lies when he's confronted and he thinks he's going to get in trouble. It's a whole vicious circle - I get mad because he lies, he lies because I get mad. How does that stop? I need to find a way to end this pattern.
     
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