Anyone else dealing with difficult child that seems angry more often than not?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by PlainJane, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. PlainJane

    PlainJane Every dog has his day....

    I had two questions, and seperated tham into two post. :)

    Our difficult child seems angry most of the time. Being around him, is exhausting. Having him at the dinner table, is unpleasant to be honest. He goes on and on about negative things, to the pont where we are trying to teach him nice language to use. Even if its scripting. Its like the only spontaneous language he has is angry, hateful words. :(

    A dinner time example:
    We are eating, difficult child talks over us, saying things like "your dinner is yucky. It smells can't drink water with dinner...its not good for you. Why are you drinking like that? J (our toddler) is being bad. J isn't eating. J can't talk right....Its winter...I don't like winter. I don't like the food is cold, its too cold...why are you sitting like that?....

    He goes on and on critisizing, and putting things down. Hubby and I have taken a VERY close look at our communicating to see if he gets it from us. We've even made an effort to be obnoxiously cheery and positive, to set an example. Its like he programed to be like this.
    Its hard to explain, but it seems like 90% of the time his words are negative, or forceful. (barking orders at others, demanding, controling)

    Anyone else have this issue? Any advice?
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Question: Has he been diagnosed and is he on the autism spectrum? HE SURE SOUNDS LIKE

    I recommend a complete neuropsychologist evaluation. in my opinion they are the best diagnosticians and can offer you more answers than we can. Most likely you did nothing wrong, but your differently wired kid will need interventions to help him. He may just be talking to hear himself talk.

    Neuropsychs take a while to get in to see, but that's because they are awesome...6-10 hours of testing on every level. Again, highly recommend this! We can't really help you until we know what is going on. It sounds like more than just defiance and an attempt to annoy or be mean.
  3. buddy

    buddy New Member

    First, yes, i can relate once again..... When Q was younger I remember saying I didn't care if he learned to read or write or do math... I just hoped he would be happy in the future, he even rarely smiled!

    I will tell you this, once we got to the bottom of some of the issues, he did so much better.

    He was not reading emotions well. He could not really tell how he felt so we used a lot of pictures. Sometimes when kids are verbal we miss how limited their use of language might be. Also how much they may be overwhelmed by conversation going on around them. Everything in their world is so out of control that they are grumpy about it.

    My son is hugely triggered by more than one person talking at a time. He just has to interject comments. It used to be mostly negative/mean. Now he tries to make jokes and says silly things that are often really really inappropriate.

    Kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) often do not know how to be a part of a back and forth conversation so they just comment on everything. And as I said, for some reason...some of our kids tend toward the negative. It sure can be wearing.

    It is actually not a bad idea to help teach scripts by modeling etc. Forcing him to say things will probably end in a power struggle that is not worth it. But Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids often do need direct teaching which means they do not pick up the way to talk or do things by just being around it. They need us to really help them learn specifically how to handle different situations.

    He is young enough that you can do lots of social stories that you can make up ...short on a page on a computer.... use pictures (if you have not bought boardmaker might want to do that but these days you can find lots of pics on the internet) and simple words.

    He very likely has NO CLUE how his words affect you and will affect baby sib. Even if you look and sound angry, it probably does not register that he is causing it or maybe even what you really are feeling.

    These are great things to ask how they are handling in school so you can share the same types of teaching at home. They may even be willing to make social stories for you to bring home... I used to do that all the time for families if they asked.

    Getting a handle on these things is always an adventure. Rarely is it what it seems on the surface at our house. You might find the same. HUGS to you are hubby....
  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Buddy -
    That's one to add to the QUOTES thread!
    Because... for most of "our" kids... that is just SO very true.
  5. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I know you can relate to that IC! by the way Kimmie, Q DOES smile and giggle and even will sing once in a while. He even sometimes has very pleasant conversations (usually round his special interest topics but that is fine... as I said, we learn to adjust and use what we can to get to the issues). There is hope.

    (and he DOES read and write too, lol)
  6. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Duckie's difficult child behavior often manifests itself as anger; but, if you look real carefully, you can see her anger is usually caused by frustration. I imagine that he is overwhelmed at the dinner table (my Duckie isn't technically on the Autistic spectrum but a noisy, messy toddler would most likely be frustrating and off-putting to her due to her overly sensitive disposition), the taste or texture may be difficult for him, having to focus on the hand-eye coordination needed to feed himself is tiring, he already had a long and presumably overstimulating day at school and his (probable) low muscle tone means he'd rather just lay his head down on the table. And, by the way, the way his chair rocks ever-so-slightly when he moves (obviously I'm assuming here, lol!) startles him. All this means that you have one very cranky and miserable boy at the table.

    You'll need to figure out an after school, evening and bedtime routine that allows him to decompress between "events" that are difficult for him. Most kids on the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) spectrum react well to having short sensory breaks to help keep them feeling balanced. I'd speak to your Occupational Therapist (OT) about setting up a sensory diet for your difficult child so that he can start to feel better. It isn't a cure but it should help him feel less miserable.
  7. lovelyboy

    lovelyboy Member

    Yes, we need to deel with alot of this with our drains all the positivity out of situations!
    Unfortunately I dont know your sons diagnosis, age, exct.......but I assume he is preteen?
    From what you describe......relating it to our son: my son is very sensitive to I dont even take it personal if he says food stinks and makes as if he wants to vomit! What I now when I know something might bother him, like sause, garlic, ginger, brocoli, exct.....I ask him if he is ok with the smelll.....even if it did bother him, the fact that I asked him and acknoledge his feelings makes it better.....I also warn him, like saying I am going to put boiling water on the doggies food.....if the smell bothers him he must tell me and I will close the door.....or even.....after we have eaten food that smells yucky to him, I make sure to first brush my teeth before I hug him, otherwise he will "rudely" push me away and say I stink......
    Regarding drinking water with food....this sounds VERY autism like.....? Maybe you have mentioned to him in the past not to drink water with food because it is bad for in his mind this is a rule....and you guys are braking the rule, causing increased anxiety in him and this leads to anger.....
    Regarding drinking or eating " not right"....when he critisize our case this is because of my sons anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) traids.....things need to be done in spesific ways.....otherwise again increase in anxiety.....increase in rude behaviour!
    Regarding food being to cold and winter to cold......this is typical with sensory integration problems....but luckily easy to solve.....just heat up the food, give him a nice warm relaxing bath before dinner and make sure he has nice warm pj on and slippers! My son is like that with his porridge! He is worse than goldilocks! It must be just right!!!
    Regarding being mean to little one....if your son is on the autism spectrum.....he might not realize little one is younger, he sees him as being he asumes little one must be able to do the things he can.....
    I dont know if you also struggles with difficult child not wanting to use knife and fork......after discussing it with kido he said he doesnt like the weight of the fork, the coldness and even the tecture! He likes the feeling of the food on his fingers.....maybe it gives more sensory feedback? He also doesnt realize or cares how bad his mouth looks like after eating.......
    Good luck with all this....its tricky......but a do think maybe plenty of the behaviour roots from anxiety and not reading all the social cues right......
  8. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Yes. We used to refer to Miss KT as "Negative Nancy" because she was so negative about everything and hypercritical of everyone. Unfortunately, she still does the Negative Nancy thing, and being home on this way too long break has just reinforced it.
  9. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes, it struck me that most of your son's "criticisms" are to do with sensory issues. It seems like a pointer.
    My son, who is not on the autism spectrum (conventionally speaking; some people class ADHD as part of autism), is not negative all the time but he does complain a lot about sensory things not being "right". He is also something of a hypochondriac, making an enormous fuss about any "bobos" (cuts or grazes) or symptoms of illness (well, he is a man-to-be :)).
  10. greenrene

    greenrene Member

    My difficult child is cumpulsively negative too, and it drives us BATTY. She has no understanding of the concept of "if you don't have something nice to say, then don't say anything." I can't tell you how many times someone (usually a cousin) will say that they like something, and difficult child chimes in that she thinks it is AWFUL, even if it is something she likes too. It makes no sense whatsoever and is quite maddening at times.