UGH round 2, first difficult grown and a 2nd starting up.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Farmwife, May 7, 2015.

  1. Farmwife

    Farmwife Member

    Long time no see folks.

    Sorry for this being so long, want to give some background.

    Currently concerned about a developing difficult child issue. Will be looking for a professional to go to. After my first difficult child I am going to research very well first. I learned the hard way and navigated professionals for years of wasted time…

    Since this is my second difficulty child let me give a basic rundown on the first due to similar behaviors.

    *Formative years in chaotic house due to my ex.

    *Biggest early problem was speech delay and never truly identified mystery learning issues.

    *Turned into a nightmare just after divorce and onset of puberty. Diagnosed with cyclothemia. medications worked when actually taken. Currently non medication compliant and estranged. I strongly suspect some other underlying disorder as well.

    My new difficult child:

    *Chaotic house in early years due to first difficult child. (This breaks my heart)

    *Speech delay but otherwise very bright. This is a consideration as she has very similar behaviors to her half sibling, the first difficult child.

    General synopsis of our life:

    I’m bi-polar and just trudging along in life, surviving but not necessarily succeeding. It is what it is. I’m not the most calm parent but working on it. Not abusive as far as I know just get loud when kids misbehave.

    Hubby: Works long hours but an amazing Dad.

    Things we need to improve upon:

    Consistency, sometimes we are just so worn out from everyday life and dueling little siblings that it’s hard to be consistent. Sometimes but not always we let things slide until we are pulling our hair out. We are working on this.

    Praise, I try to give a lot of praise but it’s hard to do with a difficult child.


    My new difficult child has always been moody and hard to manage from birth, it’s just who she is. Today she had an epic meltdown that has me worried. I’m not looking for a label or diagnosis. I’m just looking for some ideas from parent experts on what may be going on. I was lost and alone with first difficult child and it is a shame. Being armed with knowledge early on would have made a huge difference in his life.

    Anyway, I make comparisons between both children because they have/had the exact same speech issue. It was theorized that the eldest had an auditory processing issue but was too old when tested and likely had developed coping mechanisms to work around it.

    They also have the same “hitting a wall” meltdown pattern. Usually a small seemingly silly thing gets them “stuck”. You can just see them shut down, their eyes change and that is the point of no return. At this point, no matter what it is, no matter how hard we try to sanely navigate or help around it there is nothing that can be done. Usually within a half hour period the situation builds up into a major, irrational blowout.

    Then the routine is the same for both kiddos. Whatever it is gets “dislodged”, they feel better, you see the real kid in their eyes again and they look and act as if nothing ever happened. In fact it’s almost like a blister popping and after all the drama they feel better, are extra sweet/helpful and almost apologetic. For a while they are on their super best behavior without prompting.

    Today my 6 y.o. got in the car after school and was all smiles (unusual for her). Her seatbelt was snagged on something. She blew up instantly yanking on it in a panic, she sincerely looked like a caged wild beast. It was frightening and sad to see her in that state. Just totally out of her head and out of control. As much as I hated to I had to yell at her a couple times to get her attention so she would quit her assault on the seatbelt. (touching didn’t work, didn’t want to grab her away. This is new, I didn’t know how to respond) I had to extremely sternly order her to sit back and relax so we could fix it several times. Reluctantly she finally did stop and just burst into tears and was emotionally all over the place.

    I explained how she could slow down and just look at the seatbelt. It had been barely stuck next to the seat and when she gently tugged and actually looked at what she was doing it came up as if nothing was wrong with it at all. *sigh* All that drama within a few seconds of a smiling kiddo getting in the car. Then, when we got home she seemed extra sunny and sweet, wanted to be helpful. She’s just always moody and after a breakdown is a sweetheart for a short time.

    I just don’t know what the heck that was all about. Does anyone have a similar kiddo or have an idea where I can start researching?

    Thank you
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Well... the parenting approach is going to be different depending on the cause.

    For example... An Aspie (Asperger's Syndrome) kid will be prone to meltdowns for a number of reasons, but frequently due to "overload" - sensory, auditory, or any other level. They "boil over".

    But some bi-polar traits can result in high irritability and melt downs.

    And there are probably other sources as well. So... what to try?

    I think the first thing I'd be looking at is the schedule. How many activities? How much consistency on a day to day basis? For example, breakfast always the same time (yes, 7 days a week), same for supper, same bath routine, same bedtime... and activities work around the schedule? or... schedule works around the activities? The latter can be a problem.

    I wish I had been told to keep a journal. It helps. Write down the good and the bad and the mundane of every single day, for weeks and weeks. Keep it going. Then, when a melt-down happens, look at yesterday. And look at the last time a melt-down happened, and the one before that... look for patterns.
  3. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Glad you have come back!

    I think InsaneCdn gave a great recommendation - journaling! For us, journaling really showed a pattern to my son's meltdowns. Not that they were 100% consistent, but there was certainly a common thread which allowed us to, at first, avoid triggers and then, as he got older, mirror and teach coping techniques.

    The journal is also a great tool when visiting specialists because you don't have to remember everything - it's right there in black and white.
  4. confuzzled

    confuzzled Member

    i'm going to third the journaling recommendation--it was the most valuable tool I had--it helped jog my memory, helped show patterns, helped identifying triggers, etc.

    I personally didn't do anything fancy-I had a weekly calendar planner with two columns (its a "mom" calendar-Susan Boynton)...I used one for actual stuff and the other for quickie notes on the diff kid....could have been one word or a short description. it was an easy system for me to actually implement-at the time there were no fancy apps or anything like that.

    I still use the same planner to this day, only column two has been mostly blank :). I also kept in case, well, of what who knows...

    I strongly suggest you find a system that works and make yourself notes--no matter how great your memory is, no one ever remembers all of it, particularly when a doctor is looking to you for information. there are formal "mood charts" that you can find online, but I found they were harder to be compliant with for me-I could always use my calendar to go back and fill in if I needed to, but I don't know, it was a pain daily.

    I am also the number one fan of the parent report that I learned of here--cant recommend one enough!