Tired, tired Mama.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by WildThings2007, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. WildThings2007

    WildThings2007 New Member


    I am new to this board...Googled support for "difficult children" and found this forum....Here is my story.
    We were doubly blessed with twin boys who turned 4 in May of 2011. It was a perfect pregnancy on paper but I was sick the entire time, from week 6 to the morning of the c-section and suffered insomnia practically the entire time.
    When they were born, at 39 weeks weighing in at 8 and 7 pounds, I was so thrilled, relieved, on cloud 9 and floating with joy simply because I could now move around, no longer had debilitating nausea and could go to the bathroom without having to hold on to the door as it was so difficult to move around, let alone do anything else!
    At around 2 weeks post birth, I became to suffer from post-partum anxiety. Not depression. Anxiety over everything x1000 but the worst the constant worry that I might want to hurt them. Note: Not that I WANTED to hurt them, but I was so scare that I would WANT to hurt them...
    On the outside, nobody knew. I was a devoted, caring, attentive, responsible, dedicated and loving mama. I was like that on the inside too...Just with a side of constant crippling anxiety that I would want to snap.
    Started therapy and medications at around 6 weeks and graduated from therapy when the boys turned 2.
    During this time, everything seemed more difficult for us than even our twin family friends.
    Yes, they were boys and were twins. But it seemed like no matter how much I talked, read and played they were always behind their peers.
    Having worked in Special Education for years, and specialized in Autism, I called the CDC and had them evaluated at 18 months. And then 2 1/2 and then 3.
    No diagnosis were ever given excepts: Possible red flags for ADHD and PDDNOS.
    The general consensus has always been: They are twins (mild developmental delays), they are boys (super active, they are billingual and needed tubes in their ears at 16 months) and they had a mommy who always stimulated them which has made them very very happy but also extremely curious and always on the go for exploration.
    Fast forward to 4 years and they still can't sleep a full night, EVERYTHING is a battle: bath time, brushing teeth, eating, bedtime, listening to instructions and on and on and on...
    I feel like a failure as a mom.
    My boys just don't listen.
    No matter what I try; visual cues, talking slowly and engaging in eye contact, setting limits and boundaries, time outs, praise, praise and more praise.
    I woke up this morning so tired, all I want to do is cry...And sleep.
    I am now reading the old book "The Difficult Child" and can see my boys in each chapter.
    But I just don't know where to begin...Again.
    Thanks for listening...
    Tired Mama
  2. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Welcome. You sound like a great mom! Your boys are so lucky! Have you had any Occupational Therapist (OT), Speech Language Pathologist (SLP), testing done? Are they in early intervention? Preschool? What medications have you tried? Do they see a psychiatrist? (psychiatrist) Have they been seen by a neuropsychologist, developmental pediatrician, multi-disciplinary team?

    I found reading 'the explosive child' helped me realize I didn't have to work on everything all at once. Yes, my kids are behind and I have the skills to teach them BUT I don't have to work on sitting still while working on safety. It also has a great way of thinking about discipline. Its a basket system.

    I have also found my training as a sp ed teacher to be invaluable in 2 ways. First, the way you interact with your kids is right on EVEN IF it doesn't look like it is working at the time. It took 7 years of working at it before for time outs started working with difficult child 1. (Plus we tried others things as well, nothing seemed to work.) Second, a knowledge of sp. ed. law is a must. It is very different sitting on the other side of the table. Here you hear of horrible schools and wonderful schools most will fall somewhere in between and you'll need your knowledge to get the best education for your boys.

    Again, welcome!
  3. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    What does your pediatrician say about their sleep? Have you tried melatonian? Sorry I mis-spelled that.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    They are getting old enough for an evaluation. I would take them to a neuropsychologist to see where the strengths and problems are and to get a working diagnosis.Do they speak well? Do they know how to behave with their same age peers? Do t hey have any obsessions or strange quirks?

    I would get on this right away. As a Special Education teacher (and my son had some really great ones) you know that early intervention is the key to a good outcome. I must add though that my son's Special Education teachers did NOT understand what he had, although they were GREAT teachers and had been exposed to a lot of kids. It is very hard to diagnose your own child (not saying you are, but if you have any inclination to compare them to those you have taught, don't!) It is so different when we are emotionally involved.

    You are NOT NOT NOT a bad parent. You have two little boys who seem to be wired differently than most other boys and you are doing the best you can and better than most people could. Never doubt herself. Just get help and move on.

    I have found that pediatricians are pretty clueless about childhood disorders. I'd do the neuropsychologist.

    good luck, whatever you decide!
  5. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Hi, I have often said my kid was like having multiples....but to have multiples EACH of whom is like having multiples...WOW. Your feelings are so normal and I do think having a sp. ed background makes me feel like I should be able to handle things better...but kids in school we only see for a short time....we do our best but it is not the day in and day out battles about every single thing in every single setting. The parents here are experts in this. I feel blessed to have found them and I hope you do too.

    Even though you do not have an official diagnosis, you know some of those tools you use with your Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids in the school setting and that you recommend to parents at home? They are being found to work so great even in EBD settings. Use the picture schedules, and social stories etc. for brushing teeth, bath time, transitions, etc. It is a lot of work to get it all pulled together (if you haven't already been doing this, sorry if you have just ignore me, smile). ....anyway it is so worth it. I used to bring a picture schedule and simple pictures of what to do to McDonalds play land, parks etc....so I could just point to the picture in the middle of an uncomfortable situation. (and by then my kiddo was fully verbal, but still responds better with little verbal input and more visual)

    I hope as you find support you will feel free to share some of your ideas with us that you have used! It really helps us all.

    I ditto getting onto private evaluations and maybe doing some Occupational Therapist (OT) and SLT if the qualify in the private sector. Really can make a difference. I always did both school and private therapies for my son.

    Glad you are here, wish I could come and babysit for you to give you respite!
  6. WildThings2007

    WildThings2007 New Member

    Thanks for listening and taking the time to write back :)
    I forgot a couple of details...
    They reserved Speech and play therapy from 18 months to 3 years of age (per my pushing...Pediatrician NEVER acknowledged my concerns really) from the Family Center.
    At 3, they "graduated" to the school district and have been attending preschool since the Fall of 2010.
    Last year they attended 3 mornings a week and this year they are attending 4 days from 11:30 to 3 pm.
    As far as quircks, they sure have some...But it doesn't seem to be on the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) but more on the sensory processing disorder (SPD), perhaps.
    Their language is definately amazing to what it used to be...But everything else still seems "stuck".
    I have been on the waiting list for the Boston's children's hospital developmental evaluation for over a year...
    But now I will call the neuro-psyc tomorrow...
    P.S. Been using PECS, Social stories and visual schedules (ect) since they were babies...It was for them at the time but also for me as I had worked in this sort of environment for so long I needed some visuals ;)
  7. buddy

    buddy New Member

    So cute! Yeah, my son is 14 and I just pulled a PLEASE symbol off my rug where the velcro had stuck--just yesterday! We dont even use them now but they are everywhere after all of these years. Some I think he pulled out of my stores of school symbols, smile. I know what youre saying. Just keep it up because you dont know how far down hill it can go without that and it can only support them even if they were not difficult child's! I assume you stick to a really rigid routine too? (hard to do with active four year olds!) I spent YEARS doing the exact same thing every single night starting at dinner....eat, bath, books, then bounce him on a big ball until he fell asleep while singing the SAME song (I still have that song in my nightmares). It morphed into my tickling his feet till he fell asleep instead of bouncing. Now he puts himself to bed, thank heaven!

  8. keista

    keista New Member

    Hello! Just wanted to add my welcome and support.
    Normal, but I hope you truly know that you are not a failure. You are doing a great job - better than most. and considering your background, deep down, you know that the deficits they are exhibiting have nothing to do with you as a parent. The just are. Of course, being the awesome parent you are, you are diligently working to get them caught up and "in line", but it sounds like their 'line' is not in the same place as everyone else's, so remember to cut yourself some slack.
  9. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Have you taken them to the Occupational Therapist (OT)? Do you know what their sensory issues are?

    You are a great mother.