complete meltdown today

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by panda, Apr 17, 2007.

  1. panda

    panda New Member

    I think I just really need to write all of this and get it off my chest. difficult child 1 went into a complete meltdown today. he used everything in the book to get to me so that i wouldn't make him go to school. from saying that i hated him down to that i wished he was never born. but i still made him go to school. he is upset because husband grounded him from the computer for a week for calling his brother a cheater. difficult child 1 wants me to intervene and take the punishment away, and i won't. he also is upset because the psychiatrist put him on adhd medications today, and he doesn't want to take them. after i got him to school, by the way the meltdown happened in the parking lot, i talked to the principal. we are now going to set up a staffing for an IEP and a 504 plan. she was very helpful, but she said that they might want to do their own testing with the school psychologist. i don't know if i understand that one he was just tested 6 months ago. but i will know more later. my question is to anyone that might be able to help is, how can you keep yourself calm when your difficult child is screaming at you and telling you how much he thinks that you don't love him? i am very frustrated with him, he will be home in less than an hour and i hope that school has cheered him and put him into a different mood. the good thing is that he sees his psychologist in the morning and hopefully that will help. the reason why i'm asking for advice on how to keep calm is because when i get frustrated and he knows that he feeds off of it and gets worse.
     
  2. lordhelpme

    lordhelpme New Member

    how do you keep yourself calm? very good question!!
    i have days when i have my own meltdowns but for the most part i take deep breaths. they just love to push our buttons and as the person who is supposed to be in control that can just send you over the edge.

    i just started a thread asking about our own mental health. we need our help too!
     
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I have some suggestions and my own layperson's opinion. First of all, with his alphabet soup diagnosis., I'd want him to see a neuropsychologist to see if he can put them all together. It is not uncommon for our kids to be misdiagnosed, and NeuroPsychs tend to take the time and testing that most professionals just dont do. That makes them more likely to find trouble areas, and diagnose more correctly. I hope you consider this option, if you haven't had a neuropsychologist evaluation first. I think you'd find it very worth your while.

    Secondly, I would purchase "The Explosive Child" by Ross Greene. Personally, calling a sibling a "cheater" wouldn't warrant a punishment in my book, even with my easy child. An apology would do it. You kind of have to pick your battles with these kids, and that isn't a "bad" word or a particularly horrible name, and, worse, YOU will suffer if he is grounded at least as much as he does and likely, unless he is stable, he won't learn from it. Sibls call each other names sometimes. In the Cleaver family, the boys never said "cheater" or "liar" but in real life these lables come up a lot and if the kid is grounded for A WEEK each time he says something like that, he'll be grounded often and you'll be dealing with the fallout of the grounding. in my opinion until you are sure exactly what you are dealing with and, until he is stable, it's best to let the little things slide so that you have family peace. If hub is their biol. father, talk to him. If he's not, you may want to tell him that you'll take over the discipline until your son is stabilized. Those are the things I'd do, especially the neuropsychologist evaluation. A neuropsychologist finally sorted through the alphabet soup diagnosis. and figured out why our son was so different. It made a world of difference and my son is without his old behavior problems today, and everyone in the family is happy, and, best of all, we know our son isn't "bad" or "defiant"--we know he just perceives the world differently. He is doing a much better job at perceiving the world the way others do, since he's had so many school interventions. You can keep yourself calm by reminding yourself that your son isn't trying to make your life miserable--that he is different and frustrated and needs help. That's what I did and I found it effective. Also refuse to get into a ticking contest or verbal battle. It just fuels the fire of whatever is causing your son to "go off." I don't believe kids wake up each day and think "How can I make everyone hate me." I think they need tons of help. I wish you luck and big hugs. Not easy, I know. been there done that.
     
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I noticed you see a psychologist. Again, in my humble opinion (and some will disagree with me) a psychologist is mostly into behavioral therapy and you're better off cutting to the chase and seeing a neuropsychologist (a Psychologist with special training in the brain) or at least a Psychiatrist (with the MD). Our experience with psychologists is that they tend to blame our parenting style for the child's behavior, yet behavioral mod doesn't work. Also, I saw lots of psychologists (I have bipolar) and not one ever diagnosed me right. So I'm biased, but have also had tons of experience with mental health professionals. I'm sure you'll get other opinions and I promise to shaddup now :smile:
     
  5. panda

    panda New Member

    well we did have a neuropsch evaluation, that was one of the first things we did. the reason why my difficult child 1 was disciplined for calling his brother a cheater. well that is a story, my husband likes to play games with the 3 boys, easy child, difficult child 1 and difficult child 2. everytime they try to play as a family, it ends in screaming at each other(the boys) and they are all very mad. it starts because difficult child 1 thinks that difficult child 2 is cheating, and won't let up on him till the point that difficult child 2 is in tears and thinks that his brother hates him. so before they tried to play, husband said to the kids, lets have fun, no name calling during game, and whoever does will be grounded from the game and computer for a week. this is one of the major issues we have with difficult child 1 right now. he goes after his little brother(difficult child 2) with no sympathy until difficult child 2 is crying or trying to fight with him. this happens at least 5 to 6 times a day. all my boys are 13,12,11 yrs old and that by itself has always been hard. what me and my husband are trying to teach, is to listen to the rules 1st. i know that they call names and tease, that wasn't the whole issue. difficult child 2 self-esteem has crumbled because of the constant being mean and hatefulness that difficult child 1 throws at him. don't get me wrong, difficult child 2 is not all innocent, but we had to start somewhere. because it has made a huge problem in the household, keeping difficult child 1 and difficult child 2 from fighting with each other and having meltdowns because of it. when difficult child 1 said cheater, he looked at my husband and said i guess i am grounded now. he just is used to me being weak and giving in when he starts to get mad.
     
  6. panda

    panda New Member

    we see the psychologist once a week, the psychiatrist once a month, and whenever we feel he needs to be tested again we still can go back to neuropsychologist
     
  7. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Panda,

    While I tried counting and deep breathing, etc., etc., etc., the above is *exactly* what got me to finally keep my calm. I'm a very Type A/competitive person and when I really realized how my loss of cool just fed into thank you's junk, I was finally able to stay calm.

    Most of the time. The last time I really lost it was probably 3 years ago, over a candle of all things. I became completely unhinged, ranting and raving like a madwoman. The louder and more hysterical I got, the calmer and calmer thank you got until he finally looked at me and said "You don't have to yell, Mom". LOL - by that point, I was ready to send him into orbit. But, the very small part of me that was still rational (very small part) really got a good look at how my reaction was totally blowing the point I was trying to get across *and* there was absolutely no question that thank you was the "winner". He's pulled some impressive stunts since, and I just am complete calmness - on the outside anyway.

    I am the adult, I am in control of my reactions, and I will *not* allow thank you to push my buttons. Until I am alone and can vent to husband or the board. :wink:
     
  8. panda

    panda New Member

    thank you everyone, he is home from school now, he apologized and has been hugging me since. once again thank you
     
  9. dreamer

    dreamer New Member

    just a thought, and this is "just me" but, I might be more inclined to use a punishment more along the lines of stopping the game as soon as it sounds like anyone is getting intense at all in any way.......and limit the punishment to ending the game?
    Years ago, I remember using disciplines and punishments that began to overlap and stack up on each other so much that it did not take very long before there no longer was any discipline or punishment left to hand out, and no incentive or motivations to use anymore. I mean we had reached a point where our oldest had NO personal possessions left at all, and was grounded so long, and so severely......and truth was- she did not seem affected at all, anyway.
     
  10. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Panda, is your difficult child on any medications? If so, are they helping or making things worse?
     
  11. panda

    panda New Member

    yes he is on lamictal 100 mg. melatonin to help him sleep 3 mg fiber/laxitives for constipation problems, allegre for severe allergies and they just started him on an adhd medicine but i can't remember the name of that one just yet. the lamictal has helped a lot, there is not so many meltdowns, maybe one a month, and he sleeps a lot better, no more sleep walking, so that helps things in the morning before school. difficult child 2 is on 60 mg of metadate. but i think that one will be changing soon, it doesn't seem to work much anymore.

    dreamer: we have tried to just stop the game, but he will continue badgering his brother all night till bedtime. he is very bothered by losing the privilidge of having the computer. but it is starting to work, he had a very productive conversation with me about an hour ago, he said that he understands and that he will try to do better next time. this is the first time he has been grounded and/or disciplined how ever you want to phrase it for probably at least 6 months. we really do try to make it count, and if he is always grounded for something it loses the impact and he doesn't seem to care anymore. once again thank you, everyone on the forum has really helped me to stay focused on what and how i parent
     
  12. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I do think in this case, the punishment has to stand. You can't go back on it now. Besides, this was with a warning and is a serious repeat offence.

    And most important of all, it seems to be working.

    For future games, I would simply try stopping the game and remind him of how he didn't like being grounded last time. Try for an apology, and ask HIM how he would like the problem handled. ie before the next game with both boys and husband, get husband to ask difficult child 2 what punishment would be appropriate if he upsets his brother and starts screaming at him again. This gives difficult child 2 more control where he needs it and where it's no skin off your nose, which may also help him use that control on himself.
    Also, don't automatically use what difficult child 2 suggests - chances are he'll be too optimistic and set an unrealistically severe punishment ("Cut out my tongue if I say anything nasty to my brother."). Negotiate it with him ("no, that's a bit harsh - how about if you upset him, you have to apologise to him and give him a hug?"), but make sure he accepts the final choice completely.

    Marg
     
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