Stealing

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by buddy, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Q often takes things, not from stores or big things but like Qtips from my sister's bathroom or if there are pencils in the hall at school etc. He has taken things they let him use and kept them too. He usually tells on himself and says, I better bring these back because I borrowed them and then brings them back. But he really does like to take things and I dont want him to develop a stealing problem. today we came close, but it was even sneakier because he asked one person for one thing then another didn't know and he conveniently didn't tell her that the first prize was not his that he came in with. Good thing he is not subtle about these things. Easy to catch him in the story....


    gosh, so here is what happened... after the Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluation (which I will post about, seemed really really good) they had a bunch of gifts for the kids for rewards. He had earlier, when the therapist was only with me, asked another lady if he could have this beanie bear and she said that could be the prize he chooses. Well later when he was done, he was told by his therapist that he could pick a prize and he still had the bear and chose a fishing rod. I asked where the bear came from and he said I came here with it. I said, no you did not so where is it from (thinking another child left it and he picked it up...he often does that and we go over the rules over and over...he always puts things back ...if that is the case.....) So, a little bit later the therapist tells me she found out where it came from and knows he lied about it. So I told him that we knew that the other lady told him it was a choice he could make. But he can't have two gifts. He was really locked in at that point and under his breath he starts the swearing chain... I just said, well you decide, we have plenty of time. He stayed in his chair and I sat on the other side of the room playing with my phone. Eventually he got up and said, come on mom... and walked out the door, I went to look on his chair and the bear was there. I gave it back. When we were outside, he said, mom that was just too hard of a choice. I said I know but it is how things work, we can't just steal things.

    Later I asked, why can't we steal things Q... because the police will get us.

    So again we talk about how it hurts people's feelings and is just not a nice thing to do. After being home, he calls up to me when I was upstairs, mom, can I have this 26 cents that is in your green coat pocket? Um, Q, that is stealing from my pocket.... NO mom, I am asking.... But you have to ask first if you can check for money. Once it is in your hand, it is too late.

    SO, you can pick to keep that money or take the 4 dollars I was going to give you for supper with Integrated Listening Systems (ILS) tonight.

    "I Want the .26" OK, that 's fine.

    about 10 minutes later.... he says here mom, and gave me the money. OK.... all is good but ..............about 15 minutes later... "mom, do you think God knows that you said it was OK and so it is not stealing anymore, I didn't want to hurt you"

    ... hmmmm, maybe developing some internal code??? Still the God thing, he is probably worried about punishment like with the police but he also knows that we focus on God wanting us to be nice to others etc.... well, I can hope it is half a baby step. (not delusional at all, I know we will be going through this probably for years, but still????)
     
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well I think you are dealing with stealing on what would be most likely a 5-7 year old level. Unfortunately, this in the body of a 14 year old. We kept going over it with my little klepto that if you didnt buy it or momma or daddy didnt give it to you, it wasnt yours.
     
  3. ready2run

    ready2run New Member

    mine goes through phases of stealing and lieing about it. it is always little stupid things, like thumbtacks or pennies. i know the right thing for him to learn is that it is wrong because it hurts people. the thing i use first and foremost is that the police could get him and stealers belong in jail because that is something he will think twice about as he could not care less about other peoples feelings at the moment of doing it. he also says 'i don't know' to everything instead of answering properly which drives me crazy when the answer is so obvious like, "difficult child, who coloured your shirt pink with marker?" ' i don't know' "difficult child, what happened to yer shirt there?" ' i don't know.' meanwhile, how could he not know, his new shirt is florescent pink on the front? obviously it was him. he does the same with stealing. he tried to take some boys hat and insisted that the teacher gave it to him from the surprise box when the boys name was right on it. if it starts to be a habit, as it comes and goes for us, i start searching his pockets and backpack (and socks, shoes, hat, ect.) when he comes in from school and when he heads out and sometimes randomly through out the day. there is no doubt though that if something goes missing difficult child will be the one who knows where to find it, usually in his room and claiming that he doesnt know how it got there. if he is fearing retribution from god, i would personally use that as a tool to help out.
     
  4. buddy

    buddy New Member

    OH for sure ready.... I think especially for many kids on the spectrum it may be too much to really think Q will take on that perspective. I didn't tell him NO , not the police issue.... just AND it hurts people and we really want to try to make people feel good because that is what makes them want to be friends with you too. Stuff like that. It does always have to have a pay off for him or be avoiding something that could happen right away. It is funny he said that about God because he doesn't usually think long term. He also focuses on the devil which, by the way, I am not into at all. Dont even know what to think about that whole subject, BUT he received a children's bible when he was baptised at age 3 and over the years he has looked at it and read stories. He goes in phases, just liking the pictures. I think between that and little things on tv he decided that himself. Really got into it when people would say things about Osama Bin L. being the devil. Asking if he was worse then him, is Hitler worse, which of the three of them is worst??? I always tell him that is totally silly. Those guys are really truly bad guys. He makes mistakes and is still learning. But that little dude said, well i heard them say he was probably always a bad guy... THAT is why I block the news etc. He just gets so obsessed with it all. But luckily he will repeat nearly verbatim what I have said when he talks later.... I am just a good guy who makes mistakes sometimes right mom??? etc. Bless his heart. But he is a KID first and will make some mistakes that kids just make so I am watching for that. Luckily I have to go thru his backpack for other reasons so that works out. I haven't had to cut any more holes in his pockets, lol.... so I will have to look in them. good plan.
     
  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    It truly does sound like he is operating on about a five yo level with the whole concept of stealing. It IS hard to handle when you are at that age/stage. You want so BAD and you KNOW you are not allowed/supposed to, but sometimes that want is just way way too strong.

    As for the news, we don't watch it either. We just now are getting the newspaper for the first time since Wiz was 3. The OJ trial was big then and we discovered Wiz could read the day he came and said, "Mom, what does deca, decap, decapitshun mean?" The headline on the paper had the word decapitation and Wiz had turned three just a couple months before. No. More. Newspapers. I did NOT know how to explain that to him!

    It is so hard when they are exposed to things they just cannot handle emotionally yet, isn't it?
     
  6. lovelyboy

    lovelyboy Member

    This sounds a bit familiar! My kido also sometimes try his luck.....he will tell me his friend gave it to him.....But I started to realize that he sometimes misinterpret others intentions....like with your example of the bear.....my son might have thought that he had to choose twice and he would think he is being disobedient by not choosing twice.....dont know if this makes sense? I always leave a door open so he can correct his steps, like sayng I think he by accident forgot he has to give it back or I will give him money and say he musnt forget to pay.....and then the no stealing talk......regarding the prison.....I tried it the other day....my son said great, because in prison he can have peace and quiet! Say no more.......
     
  7. liz

    liz Guest

    My son steals also.... in Kindergarten he didn't steal at all. Then in 1st grade, he stole Bakagon's at least 3 separate times and 2 of the 3 Susan B. Anthony coins the teacher had shown at school. I returned 1 of them and when the teacher asked if I had seen another one that she was missing, I said no. Then that summer, guess what I found when I was painting his bedroom. The other coin! I was ticked! I returned it to her the first week of school next year. She was like, "WOW! Thank you! What are we gonna do with him?!" She was very good to me as a mom to a difficult child and good for him about making him responsible for his choices without traumatizing him!

    Then the next year, he stole a video game from a friend's playroom and get this - He traded with another child at the YMCA where I work evenings and he attends in the playroom while I work. Fortunately, my husband noticed he had a different game. he returned the game of course and I took him to the police station as a last resort! The police man talked to him - he did not break! When I brought him home and told him to write 25 sentences I will not steal, he broke! He cried in my arms and I asked " Why are you crying?" He admitted he was scared of going to the policeman. Thank goodness he was scared at least enough to cry; albeit after the fact!

    When we were there, the policeman took me aside and said, "I can tell you're too easy on him. He should've cried! Do you spank him? You know spanking is not illegal in GA." I am not KIDDING! He really said that!! I explained that I felt bringing him here was extreme; but I wanted it to stop NOW! He said bring him back if you have any more trouble and I will talk to him again; but consider being tougher on him.

    I would like to say my son never stole again; but no... he still steals and I have to give him a consequence... he knows it is wrong and the psychiatric thinks he has a "hoarding" issue and that it stems from the "5 foster homes he was in from age 12 to 17 months". I am SO over it!

    I feel for you buddy! It is a tough thing to deal with! ((HUGS!!))
     
  8. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Susiestar: yes, it really is so tricky. I agree with you and Janet, he is operating on that level for most things.

    Ready2run: that crazy lying makes me nuts too

    Lovelyboy: I agree, even thought it surprised him at first, I think he did think she said he could pick one for her and then the other lady said (and I heard it) since you did so well you can pick a BIG prize. I am sure the thought "too" but then when we asked...where did you get that...he assumes he is in trouble with those kinds of questions...also with WHY questions and many times he just tells a lie even when the truth would be no big deal.

    Liz: poor kid. That does sound like Q. He will act like he doesn't care and even act tough when he is his most scared. major "I dont care" attitude and statements until the adrenaline and panic wear off and then he asks how he can fix it, is sorry, etc. I think I told you guys once after seeing the end of one of those teen scared straight shows, he asked me to send him there so he will stop being bad. A few years ago he asked if Dr Phil could fix him. makes me sad.
     
  9. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Well, to add to the litany, J also steals... in that he has several times taken things from the school child-minding service - just put them in his pocket and brought them home because he wants them. Not to borrow but to have... and then has got upset and oppositional when I insist on him taking them back the next day. He still seems to have the notion that if he wants it, he can have it (and I know peers of his who have bypassed that stage by now). In fact, J is right now playing next to me with his toys and cars spread out on the floor and I happened to ask him about a van I didn't recognise. Oh no, it wasn't from the garderie, he said cheerfully, it belonged to a little girl... More contraband! When I asked, he said it was naughty to take things that did not belong to him. But it seems he forgets about this in the moment of desire...
     
  10. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Liz....when Cory was 6 or 7 I cant remember his exact age all these many years later, I took him down to the juvenile cops place. Back then it looked very scary to a little boy. Heck it looked scary to me! I told the woman at the desk that I had a young child with issues with "shoplifting propensities" and asked to speak to one of their officers. I winked at her above Cory's head. She nodded. She took us back to this very strict and tough detective's office. He had me sit in one chair and Cory in another. Cory's feet didnt even touch the ground...lol. The detective asked me for the details and I gave him some outlines and then he turned to Cory and it was as if God himself was talking. He wouldnt let Cory move one muscle. Every time Cory twitched he called him on it. Cory couldnt wipe his tears...lol. He made him explain his actions without moving an inch. The man had me leave the room for a few minutes. Then when he opened the door Cory was still sitting there still as a statue and he asked Cory if he wanted to go home with me or go to foster care. Cory said home with Mommy. He asked him if he was going to steal anymore. No...in a trembling voice. He then told him if he saw him again then he would take him away from his mommy and daddy. Did Cory understand that? yes...trembling voice. Okay young man.

    We left. Cory cried all the way home.

    I would love to say that worked. It did for quite awhile until he was a teen.
     
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