Do you think I am doing the right thing?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by StressedM0mma, Nov 13, 2012.

  1. StressedM0mma

    StressedM0mma Active Member

    OK, I am asking here, because I know I will get honest and helpful answers. As you know, we are once again having issues with difficult child and her going to school. She panics everytime I drop her off. She is refusing to get out of the car, and tries to negotiate a later time to go to school. I have tried being nice and calm, and talking it out, but I think this is just becoming a stalling technique. I have yelled. (not one of my prouder moments) I have bargained etc. Now, I give her the opportunity to go into the building on her own. If she doesn't, I call the guidance office, and have her escorted into the building. I have done this the last 3 or 4 times she refused to go in on her own.
    Yesterday with easy child in the car she went in on her own with no issues, so I know she can do it.
    I guess what I am wondering is am I doing the right thing? I feel like it is my job as her parent to make sure she is in that building no matter what. Now, here is the next question, do you think I am over stepping by calling guidance and having someone come and get her every day? We will be starting counseling again soon to help with this.
  2. TheBoyHasArrived

    TheBoyHasArrived New Member

    You are the one legally responsible for making sure she attends school. By using all of your resources, you are proving that you are attempting to comply with truancy laws. I work in a public school district, and in two of the buildings that I've been in, guidance has been involved with escorting non-compliant children into the building regularly (one older child had to be carried into the building daily, but quickly calmed down as soon as she was in class). So, I think that it is well within reasonable for you to ask guidance for assistance.
  3. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    You are doing the right thing. It shows the school district that you are doing your best to comply with compulsary attendance laws.
  4. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    If she feels more confident having someone walk into school with her - why not invite someone else along for your carpool? Is there a friend or neighbor who would appreciate a ride?
  5. StressedM0mma

    StressedM0mma Active Member

    Daisy, I would love to have someone else in our carpool. But, I cannot ask that of someone else. difficult child is never ready at a set time, and often we are running late. She ten uses the excuse that she cannot go in because she is late, and it makes her nervous.
    I guess what I am really asking is am I being a good mom forcing her to go? I think in my head I know I am doing the right thing by her, but my heart is torn apart every single day I do this. I am furious with her and heartbroken for her at the same time. She tells me she hates me, and that I am a B**** but I tell her it is in her best interest, and I am doing this because I love her. I guess it is just one of those days where I needed the board to say yes you are doing the right thing for her.
  6. dstc_99

    dstc_99 Well-Known Member

    Yes you are doing the right thing!
  7. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Until you can get to the bottom of the issues, you are going to have to be her backbone. She doesn't have it in her, and she desperately needs it. It is, of course, really hard to be your own backbone AND the backbone for difficult child... but for now, there really isn't any other option.
  8. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    (((Hugs))) Of course you are doing the right thing for her! Please don't think I meant anything else!

    I was only thinking that if easy child walking her in gives her some confidence - it might be less stressful for everyone if there was a peer to walk with every day. I don't know what kind of neighborhood you live in (so it might not be possible anyway), but I was thinking of a scenario where a friend would come to the house every morning...and your daughter would be encouraged to get ready faster because she knew friend would be there at a certain time.

    Or - just another thought... what if, if difficult child were ready at a certain could drive through somewhere for a hot cocoa on the way to school?

    I'm just brainstorming...trying to think of ways to make the morning something to look forward to, instead of a battle.

    more (((hugs)))
  9. idohope

    idohope Member


    We dealt with school refusal for several years. I think you are doing the right thing. We worked with the school to get a couple of things in place:

    1) difficult child was allowed to walk in late and did not have to have a parent sign her into the office. (having someone walk in with her helped so long as it was not a parent)

    2) The principal was generally outside the school as students entered. If we were late he looked for her out his office window. He would come out to escort her in if he could see our car out there and difficult child not getting out.

    3) we were encouraged to call the school if we were in the parking lot and not able to get her out of the car.

    4) as a last resort, which we stated to difficult child but did not ever have to actually do, we had the contact info for the police officer assigned to the school.

    5) she did not take the bus for two years and we drove her each morning.

    So some of these are similar to you calling guidance. I dont think you are overstepping. I think that is a simple thing for the school to do to get her into the building if it is working.

    difficult child is doing better with this now. Her school is now within walking distance and she walks a girl a year younger than her. difficult child feels like she needs to be there for this girl and it has actually turned out to be a big help. I had spoken with the mother to say that difficult child might not always be ready on time etc but now difficult child pretty much gets up and gets ready for school and goes. (And I find it hard to believe I am typing those words after years of every morning being so so hard for difficult child and us). So my empathy is with you and your difficult child on this.
  10. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    Yes you are absolutely doing the right thing. I sorta envy you. You have found a technique that works for your daughter. I have yet to find out what works for my difficult child. I can't even get her to go in the car. She of course, is too big to pick up and put her in there. So she continues to miss school. If what you are doing with the guidance couselor is working then keep it up. Trust me, the school would rather see you utilize one of their staff members to get your daughter to school than have her be truant. Keep up the good work.
  11. StressedM0mma

    StressedM0mma Active Member

    Thank you all for the kind words. Daisy, easy child didn't even have to walk her in! That is the crazy thing. We were all in the car, and when I got to the door and told difficult child goodbye, she started with the I can't... I said yes you can, go on in. ANd she started to refuse. Then easy child chimes up from the backseat."Go into to school difficult child it is time now." and off difficult child goes. It was one of those bang your head on the window kind of moments. And, I would love to take the neighbor girl with us, but no matter what time I have difficult child get up, it is always the same time when we leave. She is self sabotaging. We have 3 more days this week, and only Mon. of next week. I am hoping that the break from school will help, but I am fully expecting it to make things worse. Sigh. On the bright side, I had my health screening at husband's employers today, and my blood pressure was no where near as high as I thought it would be!
  12. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    I'm not an expert in the subject, but I think that you are doing exactly the right thing. She needs to know that she has to go to school and that you will make her go. Yes, call the guidnace counselor and have them escort her into the building. This way they see that you're not making up what is going on. School needs to be a non-issue. If she will not go in under her own power then she needs to be escorted in.
  13. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    You are doing the right thing. Usually the right thing is the hard thing and it hoovers to be the mom at those times.

    In absolutely no way are you overstepping. this is pretty much part of the job for the people at the school. Even if they tell you that difficult child is the first/only kid to ever have this problem, she isn't. Well if the school is only 1-2 yrs old then MAYBE she is, but I highly doubt it. Our middle and jr hgh schools have a routine for school refusal. I think most school do.

    So don't feel bad in ANY way for asking the counselor to do this.
  14. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    I am wondering if she is being bullied in school? Check to see who has lockers near her and who she sits near in those first few classes? Maybe she will open up to easy child on this?
  15. buddy

    buddy New Member

    She could be being bullied of course but this is a long standing pattern and I think I remember the bully theory was being checked into but that didn't seem to be it????

    Anyway I agree you need to document your efforts and she needs consistency so yeah I think you're doing right by her.

    But more importantly I think are your efforts to work on figuring things out and to resolve things through therapy and checking out side effects of the medications like you're already doing.

    Do you think it would make sense to take the option to walk in alone out of the equation for now? What if an approach to up the success rate started---like......they just plan to meet the car daily till things go smoothly for a month or so....(like 90%of the time for example ) ....then they walk out and wave to her to her from half way so she comes out and walks the rest of the way for another month or so then they move further and further away. Take you and all the encouragement or arguing completely out of it. Just say by, have a great day.....(or.whatever ) and sit there waiting.

    I.think sometimes "errorless learning " works better and is a more positive method, because there is a low opportunity for things to go wrong and.people are not coming attention on the days she is in a negative mode. Eventually (hopefully ) her brain has worked through the anxiety and neg pattern she is in.

    May.sound stupid but its just an idea, smile!
  16. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    I was also thinking if you could make escorting her to school a regular practise for now? For me the 'you need to walk from car to school and if you don't co-operate, I will have to call someone to escort you' sounds little punitive, if for her it's can't, not won't-matter. Would it be possible to sell it to her as her needing some extra help with this right now and as an accommodation instead of 'if you don't co-operate, we do this and that'-thing.

    If she is frequently failing in the simple task of walking from car to school alone, that has to be quite disheartening for her. Not getting her to school is of course not an option (every day away would just make it much more difficult for her to go again) but taking away an option of walking be herself would also take away the option to fail in that. If she is successful in walking to the school escorted, maybe that should be an only option for some time. Instead of having to start her school day often by failing, she would be able to start it with successfully doing the preplanned thing.
  17. StressedM0mma

    StressedM0mma Active Member

    Buddy and Suzir, that is exactly what I was thinking. I actually emailed her Guidance counselor yesterday to ask if we could just plan on having someone meet us for the rest of this week and Mon. of next week.(then we are on vacation for Thanksgiving.) I of course did not hear back from him. I figured if it was too much for her to even think about, then I would just take it away from her at this point. She says she will be on time today, and will go in on her own, I am just not counting on it. I hate anxiety. And, I hate that things were going so well, and we tanked again. (Small self pity party here.) Well, off to crate the dogs and see what happens.
  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I am sending hugs. I have no advice, but you are doing the right thing, and have some great ideas here.
  19. Bluenose

    Bluenose New Member

    ((HUGS)) You are doing the right thing.
  20. StressedM0mma

    StressedM0mma Active Member

    Well, I forced her up and out of bed earlier today, and she still stalled some. (plucking eyebrows REALLY?) But we made it out of the house earlier, and when we got there I asked her if she could go in on her own, and she said yes. She started to panic because she doesn't have her pictures for photography done, but I told her that was something she needed to handle. And, she actually got out of the car, nervous, but she did it, and walked into the building on her own!!! I think it helped that we were there a few minutes early too.
    But, I will take what I can get right now. One day down.