Wee difficult child slipping...any ideas?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Shari, Feb 13, 2008.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Wee difficult child is starting to consistently challenge me again. As of now, its just verbal, but this is usually a precursor to more physical stuff, if history repeats itself.
    This morning, he yelled at me to get him some milk. The milk carton is over half empty, and the dishes are in the rack on the counter, which means he can reach a cup and do this himself, so I replied that he could handle it.
    He immediately shouts back that I'm mean. I ignored him.
    Later, I told him he needed to get ready for school. He asked if I was going to get his milk. I said not right now, I was getting ready for work and he's a big boy, he could get it himself. And I surely wouldn't do it if he wasn't ready for school. Again, he yelled that I was mean and began spitting on me and throwing things in the living room.
    I said "you're right. I am mean." This infuriated him. He started sobbing, huge sad sobs, told me not to say that, screamed at me angrily, then immediately apologized, crying huge sad sobs again...
    He finally calmed down and got dressed and came back thru the kitchen. I happened to be standing by the sink, so I handed him a glass, and he got his milk. He hit his head on the fridge. For a kid with his level of pain tolerance, normally he wouldn't even have noticed, but today, he was bawling in an instant and ran to daddy for comfort (obviously more going on than pain there).
    He calmed down again and went to his room and laid on his bed. Then he ordered me (still in the kitchen) to get his socks. I said no. The mean mom routine again, spitting, throwing things started. I ignored it.
    Meanwhile, I'm thinking that this has gone on for more than a few days now and will probably escalate soon to things I can't ignore (hitting, breaking things - safety concerns for me and him). Any suggestions what more I can do before we get to that point?
    Amazingly, once shoes and socks were on, we made it to school without incident, tho I'm questioning whether it was a good idea to send him...
  2. daralex

    daralex Clinging onto my sanity

    Shari, what did you do the last time it happened? I only ask because you said you know what this will lead to - again. Have you been able to find any method that works when difficult child gets this way?
    Mine likes to break glass - does yours have a particular thing he likes to break? I would remove all "breakable" items from his room as prevention - unless he breaks things everywhere?! Is there someone he talks to that seems to clam him down?
    I wish I could be of more help - but if I had the answers I would actually have at least one glass item left in our home!! I hope it doesn't escalate! My only suggestion is to keep talking to him in a calm tone and to not engage as tempting as it is. My thoughts are with you and let me know if you find an answer - I could use one!!!!:goodluck:
  3. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Sometimes when my kids were your difficult child's age, we would trade jobs. For example, if my difficult child asked me to get his milk even though I knew it was something he was capable of, I would say, "We're both hurrying to get out the door this morning. If I get your milk for you, will you get the newspaper from the driveway for me?"

    It actually sounds as if your difficult child was attempting to connect with you this morning, albeit in a demanding and immature way. Is there any way you could build into your morning routine a few minutes of quality time with your difficult child before you head out the door? That kind of positive one-on-one attention at the beginning of the day may actually buy you cooperation throughout the day.
  4. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    I was thinking along the lines of Smallworld--sometimes the obnoxious behaviors translate into "Slow down Mom and see my need." Of course, at other times they're just plain old obnoxious behaviors...

    Sometimes my difficult child or even my easy child's feel the need to be a little babied and I've found a little goes a long way when served up with some humor. Instead of "get it yourself" occasionally I'll strike up the servant pose and get the milk (or whatever) with language like "Here you are, Your Royal Highness". They usually smile and that's the end of it.
  5. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    The original demand for milk came from his bed at 5:30am, screamed to me while sleeping in my bed...

    I don't mind doing things for him, but when I do one thing, it turns into a crazy chaos of demanding more/more/more, so BT has us pushing him a bit to do for himself.

    I guess, tho, when I don't do them, it eventually turns into war.

    Dara, wish I had an answer for you, too! We'd be rich. I guess I'm just questioning what sense it makes to ignore these behaviors when you're 95% sure that in 2 days, they'll turn into behaviors you can't ignore...I dunno.
  6. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    Shari, I remember difficult child would start a pattern of behaviors that indicated a downward spiral. It started with sleep time being shorter and interrupted. Pants that were messy, irritability,sometimes pressured speech etc. I would try to get difficult child a good nights sleep and try to keep him from excess stimuli. If it were really bad, I would keep him home because I knew it would not be a school day. It usually required a medication boost. It's the only thing that turned the tide.
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    We have dealt with some of this, especially at times whe thank you's or b's brain was processing at a higher level than they could really express. The screaming demands, interrupted nights, early early mornings, etc....

    We also would try to make a very very calm day, often keeping the child home from school or really lowering the pressure on any homeschooling assignments. Often in the next few weeks we saw a huge leap in the ideas they were able to handle, the mental processing and communication.

    However, if I did NOT insist on some better sleep it took MONTHS and restructuring our lives to be VERY strict to stop things. We would even give benadryl to induce sleep (NEVER with-o the OK of the psychiatrist/developmental pediatrician/pediatrician). Melatonin was sometimes recomended to use WITH the benadryl, and when B was at his worst they had us even give him phenergan because it knocked him out when he just couldn't sleep, and it kept him asleep.

    We also often found that within 10 days or so each boy had an ear infection. I truly believe that the pain and infection started at the time of the insistent behavior and sleep disturbance, but the pediatrician wouldn't be able to see it yet. The ear doctor confirmed that this is very common. Of course, it took YEARS to get either child to the point where they could recognize that they were in pain, and to be able to tell us where the pain was. Often, up to about age 6 or so, they just were not CAPABLE of telling us that they hurt, where they hurt, and that they needed help. So the horrible behavior insisting on MOM doing everything, tantruming, etc would occur until we fixed the pain. This was especially tough with B due to his extreme sensory issues AND his urinary and ear issues.

    I hope things get better for you. If at all possible, create an atmosphere where he can get better sleep. Maybe call the doctor about a prn for sleep. We found that this REALLY helped.

    Hugs to you, it is NO FUN to be MOM during this!!

  8. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I was so close to keeping him home this morning... some day perhaps I'll learn to trust myself.

    My ENT called this morning and actually had a cancellation for sinus surgery for Monday. difficult child's grandmas' are out of pocket - one is down with knee replacement and my mom is gone to HA for a wedding, so I don't think I better even think about it.
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am sorry. It sounds as if you are in lots of pain from the sinus problems. Wish I could help watch him so you could get this taken care of.



    ps. BIG HEARTS to YOU for Valentimes!!
  10. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Not so much just pain as just battle-weary from all of it. Like we all get from time to time.