Typical outburst

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Malika, Nov 22, 2011.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Tonight we had a typical outburst that makes life so stressful and difficult at times. Late in the evening so J is tired... which never helps. Tuesday is his roller skating class which he loves (though he's much clunkier and less flowing than most of the others, I notice - could also be because they've been learning longer) as its geared to his love of speed and excitement. He wanted to skate to the car rather than changing his shoes - fine, pick your battles. But then when we got back into the village (on a cold, dark night and he has a bad cough), he wanted to get out before our house and skate home, something he sometimes does when we get back, him running on ahead. A battle I wanted to pick - I said no. And then... the outburst. Crying and shouting, with phrases such as "You have two choices - either I get out or I get out!", him trying to open the door, and then tantrum type crying when we got home... As it happened, there were two people visiting our neighbours just at that moment and he stopped in his tracks, fascinated, declaring that they were burglars... he's somewhat obsessed with burglars.
    The two year old outbursts continue. And continue. Will they ever dry up?
     
  2. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Arghhhh.... how frustrating and draining...
     
  3. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    I feel your frustration. When things start slipping, could you redirect him to an activity or topic he likes?
    You might really have to think to keep things fresh, but the "burglar scare" shows that he can get off track.
    It could be a story game (can be done anywhere) and you could start with "I see some suspicious" and he has to keep going "Isee some suspicious, it could be a thief...." and you keep going "I see some suspicious, it could be a thief, he is dressed in black...". etc.
    Or as things head south, you could say "oh, I feel like cookies tonight, how about you?" What ever is doable and catches his attention.
    Will they ever dry up... I am sure they will, but when? ;)
     
  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    We had to drop out of all sorts of activities for these reasons... difficult child was just too tired to cope. If he could have had classes half as long, it might have worked, but he wasn't going to quit half-way through and look "stupid" to the others there...

    Its a tough call. Good to burn of the energy, good to build motor skills, good to have social interaction... but if this happens with any sort of frequency, attached to a particular activity... I'd be rethinking the activity.

    JMO.
     
  5. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Thanks all. Alas, I can't blame it all on tiredness though I think tiredness aggravates it... Today so far we have had an "outburst" first thing this morning because J wanted to put his roller skates on instead of shoes (!!), then later because he didn't want to go to the childminder's for a couple of hours - I had an important meeting with the bank - then because we passed a fun fair and he wanted to go to it straight away. All that gets him out of these fits is distracting him with something else he likes or wants or humour... he is never far away from a laugh so I can usually make him laugh, sometimes by satirising the tantrum itself (which he finds funny), and that shakes him out of it... It's hard work. It's the way it is.
    This morning I took him for the evaluation with the 'psychomotricien'. After an hour alone with him, giving him various tests, he said at the end that he has some of the signs of ADHD but is untypical in that he concentrates well on tasks once interested and sits still to complete them without movement - he said this is not what he usually experiences with hyperactive kids. He says his writing and fine motor skills are not bad for his age. Intelligence, functioning, all normal, he says. I'd honestly love to know what is really going on for J, what is happening in his brain, if that is where the "damage" is...
     
  6. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Are you keeping a little journal daily? Sometimes amazing patterns show up when you can have a cup of tea and review the week in retrospect...or better yet a month. As I just posted on another thread I discovered that there were alot of peaceful times that I somehow overlooked as I was preparing myself for the next eruption of emotion. In my case I also found clear data that the closer to the schedule of activity I stayed on in parenting the easier life was for difficult child. Sending hugs as I have been there done that. DDD
     
  7. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes, DDD, that is a good idea... if I can get it together to do it every evening (you know what it's like)... Such a journal would, in any case, make for interesting reading later I think... I do agree that there are many instances of calm and enjoyment that don't merit the same attention - why do human beings always fixate on the negative?? I do try to point out all the positive things he does to J as much as the negative, but I have to confess that there is more emotion on my side invested in the negative - with J, as I've said (and I'm sure we can all recognise something of this?), I'm really fighting with my own nature as much as his. Away from the heat of battle, I can be as calm and reasonable and mature as the next (wo)man, but when under fire, emotional and impulsive reactions emerge... So we kind of have the same problem in a sense.
    About the predictability, you really are right - have noticed so many times how a change of routine or something unexpected will upset and destablize him, usually manifesting in temper tantrums. Which does beg the question of whether it's better to accommodate that or to try to introduce the possibility of spontaneity and change, and handling those things?
     
  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I was raised by parents who believed very strongly that we had to learn to deal with spontaneity and change, and threw us for left curves constantly. To this day... I do not handle change well at all.

    We've tried to raise our kids the other way... with far more structure, far more planned ahead, only a few surprises (there are always a few). daughter handles the left curves far better than I do. DS... varies, but he still does better than me. DS is learning his own limits, and is turning down opportunities that would be too much of a left curve... I didn't have a chance where my limits were, so I've set up walls that are probably far higher and more restrictive than they need to be... but I know I can live within them.

    Just one family's experience... something to think about.
     
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Malika, do you think it was the so-called spontaneity of not being able to skate home in the dark that set him off, or just the word "no"? Or both?
    I agree with-the others, that you will notice patterns, eventually.
    In regard to when it stops ... in my case, the outbursts tapered off around age 8, in regard to running errands at the last minute. In regard to saying "no," the outbursts continue. Our sons do not seem to be that much alike, but all I can give you is my experience.

    by the way, I did try an experiment one time, where I told difficult child 1st thing in the a.m. that I was going to go through the day and say "no" to everything he wanted, except for one, and that it would be much later in the day. I refused to tell him what it was. Just to see how he would react. He did not explode as much, because he was curious and waiting for that one "yes." FWIW.
     
  10. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    LOL, based only on my own experience I would not try to teach spontaneous tolerance to a child who is struggling with impulse control. in my humble opinion it's a lesson that either will or won't be learned with maturity. by the way (just me...not true of everyone) I had to learn to not only react calmly but to speak less. I'd always been very extroverted and talkative and after awhile I realized I was adding overload. That was one of my hardest challenges. DDD
     
  11. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    I'm not TRYING to teach spontaneous tolerance :) It's just... life is life, the unexpected happens, and it's much better (in my view) if we can go with the flow rather than having a meltdown because it's not the usual thing... Since we live between cultures and routines (wildly different) in any case, I'm trying to avoid overly rigid routines that will just cause problems when they are broken during the holidays. But you're all quite right - he definitely does better on routine and predictability.
    Terry, the word no is like setting a light to a dynamite fuse for J (and all those like him)... But it's not just the word no - it's the concept no, the not getting what he wants at any time. This will always lead to a "fuss", to protest, and sometimes to a meltdown. Ha, ha... am intrigued by the "no" experiment. I could try it on a Monday and rechristen it Meltdown Monday...
    I'm finding it hard not to react to J's defiance at the moment, particularly around food. Tonight is typical: I asked him what he wanted for supper, giving him three choices. He chose cheese pizza. When it was ready, he refused to touch it, claiming he was going to be sick, etc, etc. Does he do it to be deliberately provocative?? Anyway, it kind of drives me crazy, even though I wish it didn't. And things escalate... I think J would be more helped by my being calm and consistent more than anything else but... I feel so very human and flawed at times :)
     
  12. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Of course, life has a way of throwing curves. Your required lifestyle changes would make it more difficult to stick to a schedule. I guess the best you can do is avoid unexpected trips to the store or for visiting etc. to attempt a schedule.

    I'm curious....what was the outcome of his refused dinner choice? No, lol, I don't have "the" answer for that either but I've been there done that too. Fortunately it was a rare event. DDD
     
  13. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    What did I do about the refused pizza? I got upset, he got upset, I got more upset, he got more upset... spiralling quickly upwards to mayhem and meltdown, I finally took control of the situation, calmed us both down, he got teary, sat on my lap, we had a cuddle, then he slowly ate a small slice of pizza... Then we had another big meltdown about brushing teeth and I kind of insisted, no CPS because he wasn't having any of it, and I brushed them for him, really against his will (but he was opening his mouth...)
    Hey ho. I am not writing that Guide to Perfect Parenting just yet.
     
  14. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Malika... maybe too many choices? Just something to think about... keep it in the back of your mind when you're reviewing your journal on New Year's Day...?
     
  15. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes... but the choices are precisely because I reckon that if I ask him what he wants to eat beforehand, he is not going to go through all the crisis and drama about not wanting to eat what I've prepared. A theory that is clearly redundant :)
     
  16. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Even now, I have to have supper "on the table" by 5:30... or within 10 minutes of walking in the door, which ever is later. I can't actually "cook" ANYTHING in under 30 mins. So... most of the time, we plan life for a 5:30 supper. If we can't... supper is in the fridge waiting, requiring just a re-heat in the micro of a few key items. Delay in supper = major behavior problems. Giving them a choice when they are already tired and hungry? ummm... tried that twice - the second time because I didn't really believe it the first time. It just doesn't work - at least in our house.
     
  17. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Hmmm.... if ever you fancy a year's sabbatical in France (family welcome), the west wing awaits you :) Yes... even though this has not actually occurred to me, I think you are onto something... If I had something pre-prepared that I could just take out and reheat as soon as we got through the door (tonight at about 6.45 pm), it would probably solve this problem. Which would involve a culture shift for me because I don't think about preparing supper before we get there...
     
  18. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I cook on weekends and the odd (known ahead of time) weeknight where nothing is going on before supper. Ground beef... plain (with rice), taco meat, meatballs, patties... extras go into freezer, in meal-sized portions, for future meals. Roasted chicken (after the main meal of it) becomes chopped chicken... into meal-sized portions and into freezer, except for maybe ONE container for a known "quick supper" in the next day or two... chopped chicken here becomes wraps... shred/grate/chop veggies a day ahead, grate the cheese as you need it, put chicken on warmed tortillas, add veggies, cheese, (sour cream optional)... roll up and eat. If there isn't enough left-over rice, it doesn't take long to cook potatoes in the micro - just have them pre-scrubbed before you go.

    Now, Malika, let me warn you... this is NOT because I'm organized. Seriously. I'm the absolute worst. (good thing there's no video on this site... !!!) This came about out of sheer necessity. difficult child kid + low blood sugar = meltdown. Here, that is 100% of the time. Totally predictable. husband said... no way he was living with something THAT predictable with THAT obvious of a solution. SO... I came up with a handful of "stow-away meals".

    If I can do it... anybody can.
     
  19. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    By the way... you ARE taking carrot sticks and such along with you, right? So that J gets part of his supper before you even get home?
     
  20. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    But of course, IC (winking face)...
     
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