I'm at the end of my very short rope

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Jenniferleigh1672, Mar 17, 2012.

  1. Jenniferleigh1672

    Jenniferleigh1672 New Member

    I am new here, luckily I found this site yesterday while using Google to find ways to calm my son down.

    I have three kids, a 14 year old daughter, a 4 year old son, and a 3 year old son. My 3 year old was diagnosed with Autism on 2/21/2011. He is in preschool at the local elementary school in the Special Education program, which has done wonders for him. I have no doubt that he is going to be okay, assuming that he will continue to receive the support he is getting now. My 14 year old is a typical teenager...She hates EVERYTHING. It's too hot, too cold, too sunny, too cloudy, etc.

    My "problem" is my 4 year old.
    He is fine if he is alone with me. If I ask him to do something, 75% of the time he does it, no questions asked. I spend time alone with him 4 days a week, for 4 hours. As soon as my 3 year old comes home all hell breaks loose.
    He will do the oppisite of what I say. He throws things. Yesterday he was eating edemame. When he finished he threw the pods on the floor. I told him to pick them up, which caused him to run away, me to chase him, and him being put in time out until he picked them up. Things like this are normal here.
    We were outside yesterday and he was riding his Big Wheel. A neighbor was leaving their driveway, so I told him to get out of the street (we live at the end of a cul-de-sac). He just started pedaling faster, weaving around, looking behind him to see if the car was near him. I always tell him to look ahead, never look behind you when you are riding..The car ends up waiting for me to get him to the sidewalk so that they can back up. I told my son that because he didn't listen we had to go inside. THIS caused a huge temper tantrum. He screamed for 17 minutes. I would leave the room and he would follow me to whatever room I went to. I read online that ignoring the bad behavior was the best way to eventually end it, but it was so hard to do! 17 minutes of glass shattering screams can really pluck at the nerves! It is becoming more hostile at home...He is making everyone miserable, and my 14 year old hates having friends over now because of his behavior. He never, ever does anything the first time you ask, he is argumentative, and he loves to annoy you.
    I think that he has ODD, which would not surprise me at all. My husband has ADD, and with my other son having Autism it kind of makes sense to me that my 4 year old would have something along those lines.
    I am into homeopathic remedies whenever possible. I have tried BrightSpark and Omega-3. I read online about Bach Flowers, hoping to try that next. I will do anything to calm him down. I want to enjoy him, I want everyone to enjoy him, but right now we don't.
    I would love to hear advice, especially from anyone that has been in a similar situation.
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi there and welcome to the board. I am sorry you had to find us though. It is great that your 3 year old with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is doing well. I have a son with that.

    Now to your four year old...can you tell us about his early history? How was he as an infant? Did he cuddle and make eye contact? Did he reach his milestones on time? Does he act out or get stressed around other children, aside from his brother? Is he sensitive to crowds or noise? Any info will help us out. Has he ever been evaluated for the early education program? Has he ever been evaluated at all?
  3. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Hi! Happy you found the CD board. I was thinking the same as MWM, especially since you already have one with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and it can look so totally different in another child....is there any chance that your four yr. old is on the spectrum? It seems natural that he would do better when you are one on one with him because you can anticipate (as we all do for our kids, especially when we are alone with them) and he is not challenged socially by other kids, etc. Does he play with other children? Has he ever gone to a preschool or daycare where you can see how he does with other kids in a bigger setting??

    Regardless, you are among friends here who know it can be a rough ride when your life is limited and people have to avoid activities due to the behaviors of a child. Come by frequently, this is the weekend and it can be slower so make sure you check in again and post so you can bring this thread back up to the top and more people can meet you!
  4. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    Just want to say a quick welcome. Glad you found us.
    Like others: how does he do socially? does he go to preschool/daycare? has he ever been evaluated?
    V does A LOT better one on one as well. Every person we add, the worse he gets. It is just too much for him to handle, and it hard to always have to plan or avoid activities so that V won't be overstimulated... I get it.
    But overstimulation can come from different issues. Let us know a bit more, maybe we can give some practical advice.
  5. Jenniferleigh1672

    Jenniferleigh1672 New Member

    I'm so glad y'all answered! I feel so less alone:).

    He is awesome playing with other kids. Eye contact is right on with everyone. He was at a Montessori school for about 3 weeks last fall. I pulled him out because of two reasons. The first was I never had a fuzzy feeling about it and felt that the student to staff ratio was not quite right. The second was he cried so hard whenever I dropped him off and my heart was crushing! He is generally a happy kid, until his brother is getting attention or until he doesn't get his way. I know all kids are that way at times, but he seems that way more. My main problem is that he just doesn't listen. Last night at the playground he was told over and over to NOT pick up mulch. So, of course he picked it up, which meant we had to leave, not fair to my other son.
    I know the signs and warnings of Autism, and he doesn't seem to have any. I'm thinking more along the lines of ODD. I would never change my Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) son for a million dollars, but I would also hate to have that label for both of my boys.
    Is this site good for end of the day venting? I could use it every day if so!
    I haven't even touched on my 14year old! How do sweet little girls turn into such spiteful teens overnight? Being a parent is exhausting.
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    The problem is that ODD rarely stands alone and is a rather unhelpful diagnosis. ODD means defiant kid and it doesn't explain why there is defiance. Therapists use it more than the more highly credentialed professionals such as Psychiatrists and Neuropsychs. ODD is often used when the professional has no clue what is going on.

    ODD also is not situational. He would be that way all the time if he had it, even with another diagnosis with it. I would take him for a neuropsychologist evaluation to see what is going on, rather than guessing.

    Not all Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids are delightful and charming and sweet. Some are. Many are too frustrated for that and very angry. No two are the same, but it does run in families. Maybe something harder to detect is going on...again, I'd use the neuropsychologist as a diagnostician.

    Good luck!
  7. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I'm going to second/third/nth the suggesting for a comprehensive evaluation.
    Because... there is a whole range of possibilities... Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is only one of the developmental disabilities. A person can have a number of separate developmental issues, and not be anywhere on the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) spectrum. But... every developmental issue is best caught early.
  8. buddy

    buddy New Member

    not to beat this to death, but give you added he will not listen... are you sure he WILL not or is he not really able to fully listen. He is really young so it will take time to find out but he could be only getting part of directions. Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is a spectrum as you know but it also has related conditions and there are some in families who have just the sensory integration parts or just the auditory or language processing issues. So in addition to the neuropsychologist, given the direction following issue, I would go to an Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) for an evaluation looking at comprehension of language and auditory/language processing . It may take years to sort that out but it is good to get a baseline and keep the data in case it is very subtle and just showing as behavioral issues now (and in many years may look more like an Learning Disability (LD)).

    Since you have such good experience and knowledge, your kiddo is lucky you can begin to give him the benefit of checking this stuff out and helping sooner than later.

    I agree that ODD tells you next to nothing in terms of now to help your very young child. I do believe you that it looks like that though and that it is SUPER frustrating (I lived and live it, so I promise you I know it is crazy making at times).

    AS for evening vents.... GO RIGHT AHEAD!!!! This IS the place for sure. One thing I love about this board, if we are looking for input then we get it, if we are looking for hugs, we get it, if we are looking for a strong listener (reader) then we get that..... and of course we like to give as much as receive.

    I hope you can find this a safe haven. You deserve some sisters (and bros...there are some cool ones here) to hang out with and we are here for you.
  9. Confused

    Confused Guest

    Hello, and yes, always know you can come here! As the other said, get those evaluations done ASAP. Also keep everything documented of how he is before during and how he stops his outbursts. Hugs.