I'm so tired of being embarrassed

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Olligator, Sep 30, 2012.

  1. Olligator

    Olligator New Member

    It's been a while since I've posted. Tonight my son went to his best friends house for dinner and a birthday celebration, and he was asked to leave by his friend's dad. I'm so embarrassed. These are good neighbors of ours. I'm not entirely sure of what happened, but it seems difficult child was getting rude and out of control.

    This type of thing seems to keep happening. I recently got a call from another neighbor accusing difficult child of being mean to her son. Does this ever stop? I know that difficult child has issues switch social skills and we are working very hard on it, but it never seems to sink in. Every time he leaves the house I cringe wondering what he will say/do next. I have been having a real problem with anxiety because of all of this. difficult child's mouthiness, and lack of social skills is a real problem. I get so much attitude that I am worn down. He is only eight and has no compunction about calling me stupid, telling me I'm a horrible mother, and just general surliness.

    I'mabsolutely exhausted by living on eggshells around him. I'm ashamed to admit I'm embarrassed by him. At this point I don't know what to do. Talking to him and his social skills therapy doesn't seem to help with the nastiness. And how will I face the neighbors tomorrow at the bus stop? I've had about all that I can handle.
  2. greenrene

    greenrene Member

    I don't have much advice, but I do feel your pain. My difficult child has embarassed the hell out of me on many, many occasions. She's gotten a little better as she's gotten older, but still there are times when OMG I could just fall through the floor...
  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Shippng you a new Rhino skin... I still need mine all the time, or I'd have sent that one.
  4. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I remember those days. It seemed to get worse before it got better. Hugs.
  5. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes, another one that can relate. My own difficult child seems to save up his worst behaviour for when he is alone with me, in private (seems conscious that other people judge him for his "bad" behaviour) but I've had embarrassment a-plenty all the same, from the constant hyperactivity and the not listening to me.
    For your son to be asked to leave by good neighbours is difficult for you, yes. And for him, too - is he aware of it, embarrassed himself after the event or completely unaware that there is any problem? In terms of how to handle the neighbours, I guess you just have to be honest. Apologise on his behalf and explain, if they do not know it, that it is because of his problems. Does he have a diagnosis?
    People have said things get better as they get older. I do wish this, for all of us...
  6. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    I've been there. It's hard to do, but you have to just start not to care what other people think. You know that you are doing everything that you can for him, but sometimes these kids are just going to behave the way that they behave.

    difficult child had a tiff with other boy on the school bus one time (difficult child said that the other boy was ****** off because difficult child wouldn't play tag the way he wanted to at the bus stop that morning and was demanding an apology. difficult child refused (naturally) and the other boy told him that if he didn't say he was sorry he was going to tell his mom and his mom would believe anything bad that she saud about difficult child because she doesn't like him anyway. difficult child took it as a threat and threatened him back). The mother went onto Facebook and posted that I was the "usless mother of an f'ing bully". Embarrassed? A little, but I was more hurt, especially since I thought we were friends and she knew everything that we had been going through with him. Honestly, that was several years ago and it still bothers me.
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    (((((hugs))))) it can be so hard to handle the embarrassment, sometimes as bad as handling the other stuff.

    What would embarrass him if you did it? Would that be a way to get through to him? It works on some kids, not on others.

    We had a friend who's teenage son said some really out of line things at his grandmother's during a family dinner. Parents, esp the dad (it was the dad's mom's house), were mortified. A few days later they were at Walmart and the son saw a girl he liked. Dad walked up to him, put his arm around him so he couldn't get away (should have been the kid's first warning!), and asked if he had found the Superman underroos he was looking for (remember those - underwear for kids that looked like costumes?). Dad has a naturally booming voice and he did NOT keep his voice down at all. The kid was mortified and not happy, and the girl thought it was hilarious.

    Dad then, in a whisper, asked him if it was fun to be embarrassed? Flat out told him it was the consequence of his behavior at Gma's. The kid never again acted up at his grandparents.

    People used to tell husband and I that it was 'abusive', but we told Wiz that if he embarrassed us when at our workplaces or in front of our peers then we would go to school and sing Barney songs over the loudspeaker dedicated to him. His jr high LOVED it. The office ladies and principal said they would be happy to let us do that. He was SOOO well behaved during jr high, in public at least. I don't think it was abusive at all. Esp given the things he liked to do to make people uncomfortable. He actually would PLAN ways to embarrass us. We know because we found notes about the plans in his room before he did them - and he did carry out the plans until we made sure he knew we would return the favor.

    My kids know they may be creative and smart, but I have a LOT more experience and am not as easily embarrassed as they are. Except for unplanned mistakes, they don't embarrass me in public if they can avoid it.

    BUT if your difficult child cannot see that his actions were not appropriate, maybe some social stories would help? Simple stories that you create to help him learn the social rules that most people learn by osmosis can be very helpful. You can search amazon or google for some (I think one author is Carol Gray, but I could have the name wrong) and once you know what they are you can write your own fairly easily. We had to do a LOT of training on how to behave at parties, in stores, etc....

    One thing we found was a HUGE factor in Wiz' behavior in social situations was hunger and the type of foods he ate in those situations. If he was hungry he had a much harder time remembering manners. If he mostly ate sugar then his behavior became atrocious because he lost impulse control and became grumpy when the sugar crash hit. I kept a supply of the Balance brand protein bars around or got a snack with protein for him as soon as I realized he was hungry. He often ate deli meat or chicken or a protein bar on the way to a party or friend's house because then he could have the soda or juice and cookies or whatever was offered/provided without suffering the aftereffects of hunger and/or too much sugar.

    It may sound odd, but it really made a HUGE impact on his behavior. I got criticism from teachers, other parents, my father, etc... for 'spoiling' him by feeding him a burger on the way to a party or whatever, but I blew them off because it was just something that my son needed in order to be able to function with any semblance of appropriateness.

    The Balance brand bars and Zone brand bars not only taste good to him (and the rest of us even ultra picky me!), they have a balance of 40% carbs, 30% protein and 30% fat. Many, if not most, of the 'nutrition' bars out there are basically cookies and have very little protein. We might as well have given the kids a big bowl of frosting as one of those low/no protein bars - it had a similar effect. The really high protein bars were much more expensive and didn't really make any difference than the Balance or Zone bars did.

    Given that your difficult child is only 8, it would be worth trying the social stories and protein and working on any sensory issues to try to help him learn how to behave more appropriately. even when Wiz knew how to act and chose deliberately to embarrass us, making him go back to the stories and other things that taught good manners helped. He was abut 8 or 9 when I sat him down and made him watch Barney's Best Manners twice and discuss what the specific behaviors were that the show was teaching. He loathed Barney by then, but had 2 much younger siblings so it was still part of our lives and video collection. The specific manners issues were not a problem again for quite a while because he didn't want to have to sit through the video again if he had to pay attention to it. It also showed him that it wasn't just his mom who said these were good manners.
  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Susie my dear... you're absolutely totally 100% bang on the money about the blood-sugar issue. difficult child? can't cope with ANYTHING, if his blood sugar gets low. And it doesn't matter if it's low because it's three hours after a meal, or if it's low because he snuck sugary stuff an hour ago and the spike wore off. Low blood sugar is a MAJOR (and often overlooked) trigger.

    The second one is fatigue. We can't see it, can't measure it, tend to blow it off because "the kid just wants to get out of doing X", but... is it really? Or have we conditioned ourselves NOT to be aware of fatigue?

    (the third one is pain)
  9. Bluenose

    Bluenose New Member

    Thank you for this story. It was very helpful.
  10. FLC

    FLC New Member

    WOW... I would have imagine that diet and for instance sugar levels are important but I had never thought it would directly affect behavior, specially the ability to cope with the environment. This opens for a us an entirely new line of things to consider, specially since our diet is a complete ****, partly because my two kids, and to some extent my WF, are terribly picky and pretty much don't eat anything unless it's a juicy (and fatty) burger or a pizza or such.
    So, where do I learn and discuss about proper diet, sugar levels, etc...? We have "nutritionists" here in Argentina but in my humble opinion they just want to sell you organic meals and such.

  11. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    You dont have to go onto any crazy diet, just think about the food pyramid. How many servings of fruits and veggies we should eat each day and so forth. There are other things like vitamins and supplements like omega fatty acids that you may want to look into if you dont eat much fish but you may eat fish, dont know. In the US they have gummy Omega vitamins now so thats being pushed.

    I would be leery of anyone wanting to sell you a boxed set of a meal plan. Read up online and maybe get your kids interested in helping pick up the groceries and cooking. They might eat what they cook!
  12. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I don't think the food pyramid is a world wide thing. It was devised by various agencies of the US Govt like the USDA, etc... There is a LOT of politics that went into the food pyramid, but it is a halfway decent place to start.

    Are foods required to list nutritional info on them? here foods MUST be labelled with total calories, total carbs, carbs from sugar, calories from total carbs and from sugars, total fats, calories from total fats, various nutrients, and the % of your overall daily allowance of those things (of each of the items listed) that the food item contains.

    A good rule of thumb is 40% carbohydrates, 30 % protein, 30% fat. For many of our kids, the protein is one of the most important factors. shoot for 40/30/30 for every meal and snack, as close as you can, and it will help. If you go a bit higher on protein, that isn't terrible. For some kids it is actually helpful. There are 2 brands of nutrition bars, Zone and Balance, that stick to this ratio. For more info, look for books on the Zone Diet. I am about as far from a dieter as it gets. I flat out think that dieting is dangerous and foolhardy and a great way to mess up your metabolism and body. I go for overall lifestyle changes. Not 2 weeks of none of this, a week without that, and on every third Tuesday you get to eat as much as you want of every junk food you want. I know how it messes up your metabolism and that it simply doesn't work to do the dieting thing.

    The Zone Diet books explain how the 40/30/30 ratio is helpful, and there are lots of recipes and guidelines to help you make this part of your normal life, not part of a diet that you will do for a month and then quit. I NEVER thought I would praise any diet other than common sense. I first heard of this diet from some coworkers long ago. They talked me into trying it after I read some of what it was about. It truly helps your body and brain to work better. We had steady blood sugar levels with-o the peak and then crash and we all thought more clearly, got our work done faster and with far fewer errors, and we were not guzzling coffee all day. We still enjoyed coffee, but we didn't NEED it to feel alert, not even first thing in the morning.

    So I got my mom to try it. My mom has an inherited liver disease and the docs all said that once it was damaged the body would not be able to fix it. This was the prevailing wisdom on her disease. She had to have a routine biopsy of her liver about 9 mos after she started the 40/30/30 and cut her stress levels. Her docs were truly shocked. Areas that they KNEW had been damaged at her last biopsy were normal looking. The doctor really grilled her to see what she was doing differently as the damage had clearly been there on 3 previous biopsies. Then her doctor recommended the Zone to other patients. He was shocked even more when they also showed serious improvements if they followed the eating plan.

    It made a believer out of me.

    There are quite a few Zone books in print and many are available used if you want to look for them. I know that it makes a BIG difference in how I feel, and in how my kids act and react to life, if we have enough protein to balance out a snack. Heck, half a snickers candy bar and 2 oz of lean deli meat qualify as a snack in the Zone book I read! A big part of the author's message in the book is that you don't have to deprive yourself, but iwth portion control and balancing the nutrients you can still enjoy favorites and feel better all around.

    Hope this helps!
  13. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Some "rules of thumb"... we've done the formal Zone stuff, and found it a bit expensive to stick to really closely, but it provides a good basic balance of macro-nutrients (protein, carbs, and fat). And from there... micronutrients are also important (vitamins, minerals, omega 3 fatty acids, etc.)

    Whole grain is better than white... brown flour, brown rice, whole oats (e.g. rolled or steel cut), etc.
    Pound for pound and cup for cup, veggies have more food value and more fiber than most grains. Where possible, use more veggies and less grains.
    Meat isn't your only source of protein... legumes and dairy are also good sources.
    Make sure you have a good calcium source in your diet... dairy (some who can't tolerate cow milk products can tolerate goat milk), almonds, etc.

    2% milk (that's what we call it here... whole cow's milk is 3.5% milk fat... 2% milk is "partially skimmed") is a balanced snack by itself - ditto for yogurt made from 2% milk.

    Pizza is usually a bit light on veggies. Between the meat and the cheese, though, it isn't usually too far of the mark in terms of it's effect on blood sugar.

    Where possible, use healthy fats in place of animal fats. I've found that almost anything that calls for "melted butter" turns out great with olive oil... but not if it calls for "solid" butter. (e.g. you can't make good pastry or bisckets with oil!) Examples? frying eggs, making bread, browning meat...

    Fat doesn't have to be obvious, and can be enjoyable: almonds, other nuts, nut spreads (peanut butter etc.), avocados...

    We use dried meats (jerky, pepperoni sticks) as a travel-friendly protein source for snacks. Kids have after-school activities? lunch bag gets... a meat stick and a whole-grain muffin, for an after-school snack that doesn't need refrigeration (ice pack is melted by then!)
  14. lmf64

    lmf64 New Member

    my son also suffers from low blood sugar from time to time. When he was born he had low blood sugar and until he was in his teens I could tell when his blood sugar was low due to his attitude.
    The Zone diet (or something similar) may help your child. With mine we added Abilify to his medications and it was a lifesaver. I could let him go out (even going out to play with neighbor kids would result in me being totally embarassed) The only thing I didn't like about the Abilify was the major weight gain.
  15. buddy

    buddy New Member

    my guy too....not sure if it is low sugar (not a nutritionist but....) or just hunger in general but he has always been way out of control, beyond anything else, when hungry. I always tell people to give him food if things go down hill even if he doesn't say he is hungry. Now he is having more trouble after lunch so wondering about a crash of some kind. This may be a good new thread! So many of you have good experience in this.
  16. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Buddy... what does Q get for lunch?
  17. buddy

    buddy New Member

    lol, well he gets standard nasty school lunch which I have tried to stop and provide better but it is way out of his comfort zone so I send good snacks. The bigger question is what of that does he eat? And it turns out he may just eat the snack I send all at once right away in the morning. I used to stock the classroom but this teacher??? just not sure it woudl work well.
  18. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Sigh. Our resource room will stock parent-provided snacks and hand-out at specified times (i.e. scheduled for RR at 11:00, can have snack at start of class). Even here in dinosaur land, we can get that much. (If it doesn't cost additional money, and doesn't really take time, they will accommodate pretty consistently.)