3 steps forward, one giant leap back

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

  1. luvmyottb

    luvmyottb Guest

    Well, we have made it through almost 4 weeks of no hitting, kicking and screaming.

    But last night, we took a giant step backward. difficult child doesn't like to use the toilet or brush her teeth at night. Dad asked, and then I did too. She refused.

    I should have said OK and walked away. But instead, I dug in and held my ground. The shoes, books, fists started flying with me and husband ducking and trying to remain calm. She called us maniacs, crybabys, stupid idiots, etc. etc. etc.

    Oh, I wish I would have handled it differently. husband taped the whole episode so difficult child can she what she looks like when the temper tantrums appear. I know the right thing is just to back off her, but I get so tired of her lying when I know by her yellow teeth she hasn't brushed them.

    Hindsight is everything.
  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Sorry you had a rough night.

    Have you read The Explosive Child by Ross Greene? If so, is brushing teeth in Basket A (non-negotiable), Basket B (can work together to resolve) or Basket C (not worth working on until things are more stable)? Once you decide how you want to treat brushing teeth with your difficult child, Ross Greene offers a lot of good advice on how to handle the situation. It's definitely worth considering.

    Hope things are better tonight.
  3. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    Ohhhh I feel your pain. I know just what that's like. With our difficult child it's like walking around on egg shells just so he won't blow. Sometimes I get so sick and tired of feeling like I have to do that. Just last night in the car on the way home from swimming lessons I was trying to give him a choice of what he would do when we got home - either 1) finishing his class valentines, or 2) doing a page of homework. He got so angry and blew up yelling and screaming and saying he wasn't going to do anything, he was throwing many insults my way, then he took off his shoes and threw them at me while I was driving. Of course then I lost it and blew up and started screaming - which I guess is where he gets it from. Sheeesh. I just don't know what to do.

    With the teeth brushing thing - that is in my basket C (like SW mentioned). I want him to do it, but if he doesn't then I drop it. There are too many other things we need to get right first.

    Good luck - sending some peace your way.
  4. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm sorry-I know what days like this are like. Hugs.
  5. navineja

    navineja New Member

    It is soooo frustrating to see them just lose it over what seems to be such a small thing after doing well for a long time. N and J's therapist always reminds us to look at the big picture, seeing the longer periods between blowups and taking comfort from that, knowing that progress is being made. And also remembering that we are just human (despite being warrior moms) and will make mistakes, but see the longer periods between our mistakes as well.
    Hang in there!
  6. daralex

    daralex Clinging onto my sanity

    I'm SOOOOOOOOOOOO in touch with that feeling!! I think it's great about the 4 weeks - don't minimize that - it was a great step forward. I fully understand the difficulty of not being able to back off sometimes - we are human after all! It's not a step backwards, it was another lesson on this insane roller coaster we call life. Sometimes you speed forward and other times you do the loop d loop! You are definitely not alone! We haven't made it more than 6 days in a row so you're obviously doing somethiing right - keep at it! ((((HUGS))))
  7. tammyjh

    tammyjh New Member

    I agree with those who said to still consider the 4 weeks as progress. It really is great that she went 4 weeks without being physically aggressive. It shows that she can do it and hopefully you'll see another period of time where she can hold it together that well again. My difficult child has gone a little while without being physical as well and we're very thankful for it although we see her slipping back some as well so I know your frustration on this. We've recorded difficult child from time to time but it really makes her irate so we haven't done it in a long time.

    As far as when to push the limits. For some people teeth brushing is a non negotiable and for others its ok to skip once in a while if they feel the situation calls for it. Ross Greene's book is good although we're mostly the plan A or plan C people in his Collaborative Problem Solving method. My difficult child is super concrete so Plan B hasn't worked so far. The mood gets in the way.
    good luck though...it sounds like she's been doing well so maybe this will just be a minor step back in the long run.