I'm Still Around...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Stella Johnson, May 13, 2008.

  1. Stella Johnson

    Stella Johnson Active Member

    Sorry I don't contribute much these days. I still lurk occassionally just to keep up. This has been a busy year for us. I finally found a job back in December. The job is going great and I love it there. I have awesome insurance now that really helps with difficult child.

    difficult child is still difficult child. She is making progress though. Puberty is upon us. I'm ready to ship her off to a convent. lol (I miss the smilies we used to have. I still haven't figured out how to use them since it was "upgraded")

    She has started getting hives. It has happened at least 5 times since January. They keep getting infected because she scratches so much. She has had allergy testing. She is allergic to EVERYTHING outside. So now she's on zyrtec and zantac daily plus steroids when they are really bad. Steroids and my difficult child are a nightmare.

    I tried to find a private school for difficult child for Junior high. She doesn't fit in anywhere. She's either too far behind in school or too high functioning for other schools. The low functioning schools are willing to take her but I think it defeats the purpose to do that and pay through the nose for it.
    I applied to a charter school for difficult child but still have not heard from them. Not sure it is the right fit for her anyway. They don't specialize in special needs.

    I hired a tutor that comes twice a week during the school year. I will probably increase it for the summer. difficult child is doing really well with him. She seems to really thrive with one on one attention.

    We have an IEP meeting Thursday and the tutor is coming with me. (He's also a teacher)
    He has a list of ideas for goals and things for difficult child.

    I am terrified to send difficult child to junior high. She is still very immature for her age even though puberty is already here. She only has one friend this year. He's a great little boy. He's so patient with difficult child. He sits with her every day at lunch. The girls torment her and make fun of her.

    difficult child seems to always point out that she can't read to the kids. Then they make fun of her for it. I don't know why she tells them. It's like she wants them to torment her about it.
    Last year we were in our community pool in our subdivision. A girl was talking to her and they were running around the pool.Out of the blue difficult child decides to tell her she can't read....then the girl and other kids start making fun of her. I just don't get why she does this to herself???

    Anyway, this is the short version of our update. :0)

  2. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    Hi Step I am not as active on the board as I used to be but I do come and catch up every once in a while and to update on my difficult child's situation. Glad the job and the insurance have worked out. The tutor sounds good I used tutors for my difficult child's also because they were high functioning and the schools gave them little support. I took my difficult child out of school and put him in a private school for middle school. I wish I had not allowed him to go back in HS. I often think he might have done better if I hadn't but hindsight is 20-20. -RM
  3. 4sumrzn

    4sumrzn New Member

    So glad to hear you like the job & the insurance has been a benefit! I heard progress.....that's wonderful! The hives....I am the proud owner of chronic hives & finally found a mix that works for me = Allegra (morning), Zyrtec(bedtime), Tagamet(morning & bedtime). I add Doxepin for one dose at bedtime if they continue on into the next day....works for me, I only "itch" for a 24 hour period at the most now & it doesn't happen as often anymore. Just thought I would pass that along ;) As far as the torment part...my difficult child is much younger and this is huge for her. These children are making fun of her all the time & she "thinks" it's "friendship" to her (she doesn't have a clue what friend really means, just knows she's getting their attention & they are interacting with her). You brought tears to my eyes when you said difficult child has one friend this year......what a special young man. That is something you should treasure & I'm sure you do......THAT is what "friend" means. All we can do is hope everything falls in place for our difficult child children & do the best we can to make that happen...sounds as if you give it your all.
  4. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    Good to see you Steph. All in all a positive update. Glad all is well.
  5. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Hi Steph. I hope you can find a good junior high placement for difficult child, it's not easy. I was talking to difficult child 3's friend's mother yesterday, her son is about 9 and they are already having to look around for possible high school placement (another two and a half years' time for him). He's milder with his autism than difficult child 3, but really having social problems now with other kids beating him up just for fun.

    High school is not a nice place for a difficult child.

    I'm wondering if she tells the other kids, partly to test them to see how they will react. if a kid is playing with her, being friendly, maybe she is thinking, "perhaps I can trust THIS person," only to find out that again she is let down.

    She is going to keep telling them. So maybe a different tactic you could try, is to role-play with her a different way to react to the teasing. When another kid begins to make fun of her for not being able to read, difficult child needs to find a nonchalant, even humorous, way of responding. Regardless of how it makes her feel inside (and I do sympathise) she needs to make it look like she is taking their teasing in fun. Even if the kids really are trying to be mean, if he reacts with, "So what? You wouldn't have known if I hadn't told you, so what does that make you? Come on, let's go kick a ball around." Or "And you're so perfect? It's really no big deal, at least I'm getting tutoring for it. But you'll never be able to get tutoring to stop you from being so tall," or whatever.

    The classic passive-aggressive way some people bully, is to say something hurtful and then when you get upset, they say, "Oh, but I was only joking."
    I've found with people like that, you do the same back. Make a similarly 'smart' remark and immediately follow with, "I was only joking." Then if/when they still get upset, point out that you were giving them an example of how their behaviour makes YOU feel, so please can we now call a truce on both sides, and agree to be kind to one another?

    I hated my early teen years. The years which correspond to junior high - they were horrible. I was bullied, I was bashed, teachers did nothing unless I personally complained (not easy, when between you and the teacher is a gang of young thugs wielding palings ripped off the fence and you KNOW the teacher can see what is happening).

    The years corresponding to senior high/college - great. Some girls were still mean but I was able to avoid them or ignore them. And funny thing - it was only when attending school reunions that I found out that they didn't hate me or despise me as i thought. I intimidated them! ME! Purely because they thought I was smart. I didn't think I was that smart.

    Perceptions are a funny thing. Being a teen is terrible, for many. We need to believe our kids when they tell us how miserable they feel - they really do. But we also need to work with them to help them find better ways to deal with what is going to be happening to them socially. I know difficult child 3 is going to say some inappropriate things. All I can do is help him interact as positively as possible, and to know when to give up on a conversation and walk away.

    difficult child 1 did much the same thing. When he was in high school and was granted a disability pension in his own right at the age of 15, he was quite happy to tell other kids. Naturally this didn't go down too well with a lot of them. Some were jealous, because it's a lot of money (which we made sure got locked away in an investment account with two signatures needed to access it). Others saw it as a sign he was a total loser.

    I ride around our village in one of those little old lady electric scooters. I've been tempted to put a "Born to be Mild" sticker on the back. I often get hassled by local thugs, often the same ones (or the older siblings) of the ones that attacked difficult child 3 and his friend. They are the same ones who bashed my hippie friend and left him unconscious and bleeding. But I respond to them with humour. I've been out after dark and met these kids who take one look and say, "Wow! Isn't that dinky little scooter thing cool! I want one! let's take it!"
    I could be terrified and try to get away but I know I wouldn't make it. So I stand my ground and greet them as if they are my best friends' kids just making a joke. "You want one of these? Sure, it can be arranged. But you have to have the disability to go along with it. I supposed that could be arranged as well..." and then I chat to them about how we have to charge it after each use, how awkward it is to park, how the darn thing doesn't like going up hills, how expensive the batteries are and what a pest it it that it goes so slowly. I ask about their bikes or skateboards of whatever they have. And by this time they are usually happy, relaxed and go on their way.

    To them I probably seem relaxed and oblivious to any danger. Inside, my heart has been racing.

    The thing is, it works for me. Being female helps. It's not often it's an advantage, so I'm happy to milk that advantage for all it's worth.

    If you could help teach your daughter to respond to people in this way, she might be able to defuse some of the teasing before it takes a strong hold. Those who are now in the habit of teasing - it may be too late for them. This works best only if you an nip it in the bud. But it's always worth a try.

    Think - Crocodile Dundee, in the first film, when he gets to New York. He's relaxed, friendly, and not expecting any trouble. Therefore, he doesn't see it even when it's staring him in the face.

  6. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Hi Steph!

    Glad you are in a job you enjoy AND that it has great insurance!

    Middle School (or junior high where you are) was a nightmare for us. I am glad the tutor has goals and ideas, AND is a teacher! maybe he will be able to help the school see that cooperating is a good idea?

    The only solution we were able to find to help Jess was homeschooling. I don't think that would provide your difficult child the kinds of support she needs - wish I had some suggestions.

    I hope you pop in on us more often, I was getting worried about you.


  7. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    Hi Steph, nice to see you. Glad the job and the tutor are working out.
  8. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Steph it is nice to hear an update.
    The school things are things I worry about with K... She does a lot of the same things, tells other kids things about herself. I am going to look into a tutor if her School doesn't end up being helpful. They are thinking about bumping her up to 2nd grade. I think we will have to play catchup...
    Keep us posted when you can on how you and difficult child are!
  9. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Good to hear from you, Steph! Ugh! Junior High! I hated it when I was there, and I hated it when my kids were there. Does anyone really like Jr. High?

    Sorry to hear about the hives. L still gets them. No scents allowed on anything, no acidic foods. Steroids are awful, as is itching the hives. Is she seeing an allergist? I hope that they will find something less harsh that will help her.
  10. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member


    Thanks for stopping in. I'm glad you're still around.

    I know how frustrating it can be trying to find a school that is a good fit for your difficult child. I'm going through this with difficult child 2. On a social level, even though he is 16 years old, he acts like he is about 5 or 6 years old. Academically, with the exception of writing, spelling, and grammar, he does well and is on target for his age. I've decided to concentrate on daily living skills, social skills, and vocational skills rather than his academics. It is so difficult!!!

    I'm glad the tutor is going with you to the IEP meeting. I hope it goes well!!! Update when you can. I'll be thinking of you Thursday... WFEN
  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi Steph,
    I'm glad your job is working out.
    So sorry for your difficult child and her issues. It is going to be hard, so all you can do it dig in your heels and do what you have to do. She is very lucky to have that special friend. I hope she realizes just how special he is.
    I have no idea why she would tell other girls that she can't read. In your/her bio I didn't see anything about Asperger's or kids who otherwise blurt out the truth like a fact, regardless of consequence. Others here would have more insight.
    I agree that Marguerite's use of humor is a useful and necessary tool for potentially risky situations. I hope that your daughter learns to use it.
    Hugs and support.
  12. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Good to see you.

    Glad the job is going well, and, especially, that you like it! Awesome.

    Hope the school search goes well.

    by the way - WHERE did difficult child find a goldfish on the ground??? How strange (but so cool she saved it!)
  13. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    Hello Steph,

    It's good to "see" you -- it's been a long time.

    Glad to hear about the job. And best of luck with difficult child.

    Love, Esther
  14. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911


    So good of you to stop in and join the gang. And with such good news. And about Jr. High? It only lasts 2-3 years. lol :surprise:

  15. Stella Johnson

    Stella Johnson Active Member

    I wish I could find a private school where she fits in. It just astounds me. I know she isn't the only one.

    We haven't tried allegra. Do you think it works better than Zantac? What is Doxepin? What triggers do you think bring your hives out?
    Her little friend is a great little guy. I'm going to write a letter for his parents before the end of the year.

    You always have the best suggestions. I will have to work with difficult child on those. Thanks again!

    There is NO way I would survive homeschooling my difficult child. If I survived, she probably wouldn't. :0)

    She is seeing an allergist.She has done every test in the book. She is allergic to everything outside in Texas. Guess we need to move to the desert.

    She isn't asperbergers. She has some of the same traits but all the doctors said she isn't.

    She found it outside of her grandmother's apartment. Some jerk dumped his whole fish tank out on the lawn. difficult child found two. One was covered in mud. She brought them both in. The one covered in mud last a couple of weeks and then died.

    This is going to be the longest 3 years of my life. Longer than my own middle school years.