Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Dara, Apr 15, 2008.

  1. Dara

    Dara New Member

    The not listening is driving me batty! It is like talking to a wall. He doesnt even respond to us when we speak to him. He hears us he is choosing not to listen or respond. The tantrums and violence are at a high. Everytime he hits me or throws something or anything along those lines, I carry him up to his room to thrash and go crazy in there and then I wait 3 minutes after he has calmed down to get him out. It does not change anything. this has been going on for weeks now. They say his test scores of language are right where he needs to be. SO WHAT! Who cares, it doesnt make one bit of difference in his behavior or how he is at home. He still makes horrible repetitive noises all day long and imitates kids at the therapy school all day long. We still cant go anywhere with him or do anything fun with him because he has horrid tantrums everywhere we go. I have put a call in to the neurologist to see if they have any suggestions because his therapists no longer know what to do for us at home. His therapy never has and never will transfer into the home. I go to therapy and lead it the last hour everyday and there is still no difference. I am just fed up!
  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Dara, I'm sorry things continue to be so rough with Sammy.

    Do you think his seizures are under control? How has he responded to Depakote? When are you seeing the neuro again?

    I'm no expert on Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD), but my understanding is that kids with this disorder process language differently. Perhaps you're running into problems because of the way Sammy is interpeting the world around him. Has anyone sat you down and explained exactly how Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) affects Sammy's functioning?
  3. Dara

    Dara New Member

    The therapists have done testing in his language abilities. Both receptive and expressive abilities he scored at age level. His language is not the problem anymore. It becomes a problem when he choses to use nonsense words to avoid answering us. Our problems lie in the flat out defiance that is happening. It is unbearable. It is nothing new so it is not the medications. I dont know if it is from the seizures. We wont know for sure until we do the 23 hr EEG again since they are subclinical. We dont see the neuro until june 26th. I put a call into his office today since he is a behavioral neurologist so maybe he will have some fresh ideas for us. We have been removing him from the situation and putting him in his room to show him that this behavior is unacceptable like someone had previously suggested but it continues on and on in every aspect of the day. He battles every single thing. All day long any task big or little it is a battle and I am tired of being hit, kicked, pinched and anything else you can think of. husband can no longer run after him or keep up with him so I am physically and emotionally exhausted. We need help, we just have none.
  4. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Wasn't your Mayo appointment scheduled for April?
  5. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    I have nothing to add... I can not imagine what you are going through. I am so sorry.
    Please try to hang in there, it MUST be SO hard on you. Mentally, physically all of it... I hope someday they figure something out or you get one little breakthrough for your family!
  6. Dara

    Dara New Member

    They had pushed back the Mayo appointment because they were so backed up. I still have yet to hear from them. Our new neuro. is excellent. He found Sammy's seizures and diagnosed him with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). As he said though, we are only at the begining here so...
    I am just tired and to top everyhting else off, my grandfather died yesterday and I couldnt fly out for the funeral which was today. Just a little added bonus!
  7. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I'm apologising in advance - this is a long post. I feel justified, however, because we've been where you are, Dara - twice/three times already. And I think we can now claim a fair amount of success.

    Dara, you have the wrong mindset for this, that is why you are having so many problems here. Please be aware - I'm not meaning this as criticism, merely an observation. It's very hard to be otherwise, when you've not had access to anything sufficient to help your understanding of what is going on here. If anything, you're being told stuff that is making you MISunderstand even more (ie the language reports - I'll talk about that further on). You're also a trained teacher, and I suspect your training may be also misleading you. These kids are different, they need to be handled differently. Throw out the rule book, throw out everything you've been taught, and just stop, and watch him. Try to get inside his head. What is he doing now? Why do you think he is doing it? There is always a reason, one that makes sense to the child. What do you think he will do next? Why do you think he is doing it? How important is it to him?

    For example, you said, "He hears us he is choosing not to listen or respond". Think about this, objectively. How do you know he hears? How do you know his lack of response is choice? How do you know his 'choice' is not valid? Remember, he is only 3, for him the world exists only to do his bidding (it's how most babies and toddlers think) and he hasn't yet learned the value of compliance.

    And you've been trying to teach him this, by punishing him when his behaviour is unacceptable. But this is clearly not working. And with any discipline method, when it's not working, then you shouldn't do it. There is no point and in fact you can be making more confusion, more work for yourself, by persisting.

    With Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD), "SuperNanny" techniques generally have to go out the window. These kids think differently, their values are different and you need to go to where the child is, met them there and work back. You can never force the child to go to you (figuratively) - you have to go to the child.

    Read "Son Rise" if you can, at least the first few chapters. The child in that book was more profoundly withdrawn and autistic than your son may seem to be (I base this on the reports of your son's language ability) but the same techniques are probably needed.

    There are a lot of things in Sammy, that I see in my own kids (apart from easy child). The noises, especially. He is NOT doing this to annoy you. I remember having this battle with difficult child 1 when he was 6. We have it on record - we were on holiday in Greece, I was videotaping as we drove through Greek countryside. This was a wonderful opportunity for the kids to experience a foreign country, I strongly believe in learning at every chance. But instead of paying attention, difficult child 1 sat in the back of the car making his "WWIII" noises, as we called them. No matter how I scolded, how often I said, "Be quiet or your noises will come out on this tape!" he would not stop it. I got very angry with him, day after day. And day after day, the noises persisted. The irony of it all - HIS noises did not come out on the video. My scolding did, and it spoils the tape! He also remembered a lot more of that trip than I realised.

    The noises - we had to learn to live with it. difficult child 3 does the same thing (different noises, though). The noises do change as the child gets older. They learn what is not acceptable and eventually find vocal stims which are less obvious. difficult child 3's currently sounds like a quiet growl in the back of his throat, as if he is clearing his throat. difficult child 1's sounds like a male emu calling his chicks.

    You cannot and should not try to punish what the child cannot help. If you stand over them, they will control it - as best they can. But it will break out, one way or another. There is so much in their lives, in their heads, that is out of their complete control, that whatever they CAN control, they try to. This is another source of conflict - he will want to control his environment as much as he can. He will be objecting to change, especially change without warning. Trying to get him to stop playing with his trucks and go get dressed - tantrum. trying to get him to stop watching a video over and over, and go have his bath - tantrum. And so it goes. Interacting with others - other kids cannot be controlled, and this causes problems. Other kids want to exert their own control, or bring about their own unpredictable changes - again, problems.

    I stress - these are things in him you cannot change, not right now. Maybe later, when you've got him further down the track. Maybe by the time he is near his teens. That's when other kids stop being so egocentric and start thinking a bit more about consequences of their actions on other people (then they stop thinking about it all, for another few years!).

    You say your biggest problem right now is the defiance. Yep, I can see that. Know it well. There are ways to handle this, but if you try, at any time, to meet the irresistible force with the immovable object, you will lose, because he is always going to be stronger than you. I'm not kidding.

    What you have to do, is get around him in other ways. Think - what is your main objective? To teach him obedience? or to get him to do what you want? They are NOT the same thing.

    What you need to do, to get him to do what you want, is to convince him that HE wants to do it, too. You need to give him time to make a change in what he is doing and you need to motivate him to make that change.

    I will give you an example with difficult child 3 - from last night. We had come home from shopping and the first thing difficult child 3 did (as always) was go to his computer games. Now, difficult child 3 has chores (we've worked our way up to this, remember). I was able to say, "difficult child 3, it's getting dark soon. I need you to let the hens out and change the water in their water bowls. Please do this at the next logical break in your game."
    I know if I had said, "Go change the hens' water NOW!" I would have got defiance and a shrieking rage from him. But by saying it the way I did, I got what I wanted, and he got what he wanted. And the hens got what THEY wanted, too.
    Later on, when I needed the evening routine to move along, I said to him, "difficult child 3, you need to go have your shower. If you go now, your dinner will be ready for you when you come out. if you delay much longer, your dinner will get cold."

    He needed a reason, he needed a NATURAL consequence and I got instant compliance.

    Our Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids need to understand WHY they need to do something. They are naturally obedient, but within their own framework. You may try to teach them the rules, but the rules the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids will learn are the ones they extrapolate for themselves, based on actual observations. For example, in school we constantly said to difficult child 3, "Do not hit other children." We made him repeat it after us, we made him write it down. We wrote it for him and left it in his pocket, along with other rules. But what he OBSERVED was very different - he observed other kids hitting (often hitting him) but did not realise they were only doing this when there was no adult to see. I his mind, other kids could hit and not get into trouble. Only difficult child 3 would get into trouble. So in difficult child 3's mind, the rule was, "Other kids will hit difficult child 3. Then difficult child 3 will get into trouble and be put on detention, probably because that's the way things just have to happen, for difficult child 3."

    An example of how they need to understand in their own way - difficult child 3, with difficult child 1 & easy child 2/difficult child 2, were involved in an important scene in the feature film, "The Black Balloon." Amazingly, difficult child 3 had been chosen to start off the scene (a school stage production of Noah's Ark) with one line. This meant he had to stand on the stage where he was told and deliver the line. He had been coached to say the line at the right speed and clearly. The rehearsals for the whole scene took three months, once a week.
    On the day of filming - difficult child 3 stood on the stage and delivered his line. Then he got down again. "I did it right, it's only one line," he said. Now, even though they had hired someone as "difficult child 3 wrangler" (and also to wrangle the other Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids in the cast) this person just wasn't handling him right. She tried to cajole. She pleaded. I finally said, "Let me talk to him." (thankfully, the director was busy and hadn't yet noticed we had a problem).
    What I had to say to difficult child 3 - "Honey, you did that line just right. Yes, you know you got it right. And the other people who were doing their jobs - nobody stuffed up, there is nobody to be angry with. But there are good reasons why they need you to do it again. When you delivered the line, the lights were in the middle and high up and the microphones were on the left. They need to do it again, with the lights on the left and the microphones on the left still. Then they need to move the microphone. Then they will need to move the lights again. The cameraman needs to do it with his camera still. Then with the camera moving. Then with the camera still, but on the right. Then maybe the sound guy will need to record the line again because a plane flew overhead.
    Honey, there are many reasons and the director is the boss of it all. He knows exactly what he wants and he won't make you do any more than he absolutely needs you to. They just need to do this over and over, lots of times, because each time they need to make a little change in everything else, so they've got as much as possible from as many different angles as possible. That way when they put it all together, they will have more than enough to choose from. OK?"

    difficult child 3 was now fine. He waited for his cue, got back up on the stage as and when directed and performed like a pro. He was right on cue for each take, over the next couple of hours. No questions, no whining, because he now finally understood. Meanwhile he watched the cameras move, the lights change position, the sound guy in his booth and finally understood.

    That is what you can have, when you give your child the chance to understand WHY.

    When your child is only three, his ability to understand at that level is very limited. His frustration level is very high and most of the raging (if not all) will be his response to frustration and sometimes fear. The more things escalate to raging, the bigger the problems. At first we would find that after the first rage of the day, the rest of the day was a write-off. After a while, as difficult child 3 saw that we were trying to help him stay in control, he began to start his good day over, each time he calmed down.

    The screaming, the tantrums - these are not acceptable. But they are understandable. We stopped punishing for the rudeness, for the noises, for any raging that was clearly the result of frustration. That doesn't mean we condoned it - far from it. But we ignored it, then continued to move on. Part of ignoring it means removing yourself from harm. If he's kicking you, move away. If he follows and this is a routine problem, either put yourself in your room, or set up a playpen or other barricade, and get on the other side of it so Sammy can't reach you to kick. If possible, find another way for him to vent physically - a swing, a hammock, a trampoline.

    Sammy's language now tests as normal, but I bet it's not, not right at the fundamental day-to-day basis. I remember when difficult child 3 finally tested as having language in the normal range. I think he was 7 or 8. He's STILL not 'normal' in his interactions and in the way his mind manipulates language. In some areas he's superior. In other areas, he's very literal.

    Language testing is a blunt tool. It can only tell you things in large. You're going to be living with the fine detail problems for years.

    Sammy may take longer to process what he hears, for example. He will take even longer if he's concentrating on something else. If he's concentrating so hard that he has shut out all other sound, he won't hear you at all - not consciously. And yet he would hear a chocolate bar being unwrapped in the next room.
    This is normal, for Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids. Even for severe ADHD kids. It is not disobedience and shouldn't be punished. Instead, to get the attention of a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid, you should make sure you have eye contact. be gentle about it, because sometimes a touch on the shoulder can startle them into a rage. It will depend on what he is doing.

    Watch him, Observe. Go back to your teacher training and treat him as your own case study. But you will handle him best, if you consider him to be an alien changeling who you need to understand in order to more effectively interact with.

    Somewhere in there you have a beautiful, loving, bright child who will bring you delight. Inside he wants to fit in, he wants to please you, but sometimes it's all just too hard, there is just too much to try to do, a lot of which he just can't manage just yet.

    He will get there, but he needs you to meet him where he is and slowly show him the way.

  8. Dara

    Dara New Member

    Marg, I have to say that I do disagree with you a bit. I dont have the wrong mindset. I am simply frustrated and stating so here in a safe place. We have no help from other people. Sammy goes to therapy 3 days a week. It doesnt work in the home. We have been video taped watched and so on but the fact remains that therapy does not transfer in the home. I myself am a person with many different processing disabilities so I am very understanding to that. I do know first hand what it is like not to comprehend things properly. I do not put him in his room as punishment per say but I do need to stay without injury. He comes after me in violent attacks when he is mad and raging. He hits kicks punches scratches pinches and throws things at me so him being in his room keeps us both safe. I dont yell at him for the noises. They do however grate on my nerves after hours of hearing them. I do not punish him for that. I do try to distract him into maybe singing a song or engaging in conversation or a game. I do understand that Sammy goes about things in a different way. We embrace that and love that about him. I do think he is a wonderful sweet and funny little boy. I too agree that he doesnt fully comprehend things no matter what the tests say. All I am saying and have been saying is that we are frustrated and tired and running out of steam. We have no support. We have nobdy to watch him. We have nobody to help us when we are at the end of our ropes. All we hear is what we are doing wrong. My mother in law said that it is Sammy's fault that husband has Multiple Sclerosis. husband has a hard time keeping up with Sammy due to the illness. I have been to therapy for myself and they say I am doing well and everything we can possibly do for a child.
    I do explain the why's and everything with everything. He is very strong willed. He will not give in to anything. very thing we do is a battle. Taking his medicine, changing his diaper, getting dressed and so on and so on. I have tried everything to help him with these things so it might be easier for him and me. I know that he wants to fit in and play with the other kids and has no idea how. We have been discussing this with therapists for months. Are they doing anything about it, no so we keep bringing it up. We are taking him out of the day treatment center in june and putting him back in the normal school so he can be with the friends he has there and let him learn from the "normal " kids. THe director of the school knows Sammy well and he will be in her class. She has a lot of experience with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids.
    YOu have to understand that he also has been classified as having ODD so that adds a whole different mindset on top of the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). I know when Sammy is being defiant and choosing not to acknowlege and when he flat out has no idea what we are saying. There is a definite look on his face which shows it all. It is not something I can explain. ALl of his therapists doctors, and teachers agree. His therapsits have seen what I am talking about first hand. He is very difiant and that is why I come in everyday to the last hour of therapy to learn how to get him to listen which has yet to work at home. I cant help but be a little offended to the comment that I dont have the right mindset and need to meet him where he is. I know exactly where he is and have gone to every specialist and therapist and school and anything I can think of to help him properly. I am very frustrated and emotionally and physically exhausted and just exploding in a safe place.
  9. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member


    I is a painful and exhausting place to be. I seem to dwell in that place too much. One thing that sometimes will work for me is to try and focus on the positives and the accomplishments my difficult child has versus the negatives. I also have to make an effort everyday to be positive. My easy child daughter told my husband i am not happy any more. I use to be fun and no longer am. husband asked me if that was true. I just wanted to cry. Yes it is true....I have the weight of the world on my shoulders everyday and no one notices except for easy child.....

    I love my difficult child with all my heart and want so much to do what is best for him. I read that in your post too...that is why you are so tired and frustrated...I am sure caring and worrying about your husband adds to the stress.

    I want you to know that at least for my difficult child it has gotten A LOT better with age. At three he was a lot like your difficult child. Now he rarely gets into trouble and is cooperative for the most part.

    Take it one day at a time..and don;t forget to breath and enjoy the moment.

    I am sorry about your grandfather..that just adds to the stress...

    This is a safe place to vent...and we all care about you and want to help.
  10. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Dara, I'm sorry if you felt I was being critical. It wasn't intended. Of course you should feel free to vent here. The physical violence you describe - short of what you've been already doing, which involves removing him, all I could suggest was alternatively not removing him but instead finding a way to remove yourself, or protect yourself. Maybe cricketer's pads for the shins? I'm not entirely joking here, they might help. Trouble is, you can't do the housework wearing a sumo suit, which is probably how far you'd need to go.

    At three years old, all the usual frustrations you get with the average kid get multiplied - I can't say how many times, with a kid like this. It's really not easy. And you mention nappy changing - we had delays in toilet-training with difficult child 3, too. I think he was 6 when we finally got things happening there.

    The ODD - difficult child 3 never got that label officially, because it's almost unheard of over here, but it would have applied. Probably still would, only now he's 14 and he really does try to be compliant. However, as soon as anybody tries to push him, we see his opposition really stiffen to (our) screaming point. We can reason with him a great deal more, now, but still have problems at times especially with the stuff he just can't handle. But when I think back to when he was 3 - I never thought we'd get anywhere near this far with him, he just amazes me. And the reason I mentioned mind-set - I was also at the end of my tether with him when he was little. I had the wrong mind-set, in a lot of ways, until only a few years ago. I thought I was doing things as right as I could have, I've had teacher training and was already an experienced mother - but nothing can prepare you for this.

    Especially in the beginning, even after diagnosis (and it was much worse before) we had no support base. Even close friends were critical of our parenting, blaming us. mother in law was refusing to accept that there was anything wrong, other than my being a slack mother trying to find excuses. It took her living near us and therefore seeing a lot more of him, for her to finally get the message.
    Friends would say things to my face, suggest stuff which I'd already tried and I felt so cranky and frustrated (so if I made you feel that way with me, I apologise - and I DO know how it feels!)
    But what my friends were saying behind my back was even more hurtful.

    People kept telling us to put him in respite, but we never did. I suspect it would have been a nightmare for us. Even now, when we have to go away to adult-only family things, we either don't go or we make it clear that difficult child 3 has to come with us.

    Having mother in law blame Sammy (and therefore, indirectly, you) for husband's illness is cruel and very unhelpful. I really hate it when that happens. I suspect she's not exactly rushing to offer to mind him for you though, is she?

    I wish there were something more I could say to help you NOW; all I can say is that for us, despite my mistakes and eventually because I had to be so plugged in to him, he's been constantly improving. If you already are plugged in to Sammy to this extent then with time you should see improvement. The trouble is, if you're already doing everything you can then all that is left, is time.

    One area with Sammy that I simply have no experience with at all, is the epilepsy. Is there any way this could be aggravating his rages, do you think? Although in your original post you did say you felt all this was totally independent of medication.

    You mentioned he runs away and husband can't chase him - has he ever got lost? Do you worry he might? A suggestion (if you're not already doing it) - get some adhesive mailing labels (or similar) and write his name, maybe his diagnosis and your phone number on it, then stick one on his BACK whenever you go out anywhere. If it's on his back he won't know about it to peel it off, but if he gets separated from you, someone will have the contact details to let you know he's safe.
    We also had a wrist tag for difficult child 3, it was a band of brightly coloured elastic with a laundry label stitched on, and it fasted round his wrist with velcro. We wrote the same details on the tag and especially on holidays, we'd leave it on him permanently. Would he wear it, though?

    You mentioned in your original post that he copies the other kids in his special school and this upsets you. By taking him out of this environment (which you just said you will be doing) I hope you will find what we found - he learns to copy 'normal' behaviour.

    Back when difficult child 3 was 5, we had the chance to put him in a Special Education class of other autistic kids. Although it would have been intensive support and therapy, we chose not to primarily for the reasons you've found - we were concerned he would imitate the more problematic behaviours. He was extremely imitative (still is). (We had to do it when he was 5 because we had NO Early Intervention offered at all, before then - a crime, I think).

    What we found - he did better with the kids he knew, but it was a much bigger group and so there were times when he had to be left, while the teacher attended to the others. We had support funding for a part-time aide and that helped a lot. I still think that even with hindsight, that mainstream class was valuable and we did the right thing. When he was two years older, THAT is when I would have wanted him back in a Special Education class for its smaller numbers and the increasing gap in his social competence.

    If, on top of that, you know the person in charge of that class and you also know her experience - then roll on, June, is all I can say. From the sound of things, it can't come soon enough for you and your husband.

    I'm sorry about losing your grandfather, not being able to say your goodbyes to him, on top of everything else, is just not fair. Do look after yourself especially now, you've already got a larger helping of stress than any of us should ever have to deal with.

    I really wish I could help you more. I remember what difficult child 3 was like at 3 and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

  11. Dara

    Dara New Member

    Sammy's epilepsy could very well be cause for the rages and behavior. The thing with that is it will take time to know for sure. We are just getting up to the theraputic dose of medications and then after the seizures stop, we wont know until we do another 23 hr EEG, the brain has to heal itself. It could easily be 18 months before we know anything for sure. Sammy has never run far enough away that I couldnt get him. It really is a test to see what we will do. His social skills really are a worry to us. He has already been teased while playing in Mcdonalds and I felt horrible for him. We are really worried about the future that because he just follows and imitates that he can get into a lot of trouble by following the wrong kids. We are trying to work with him on that through therapy but...
    My mother in law infuriates me because she flat out does not like Sammy and wants nothing to do with him. She is destroying a future with a great kiddo. It truly upsets me. She so out in the open favors my niece it is horrible. I am not going to get into that because it is a whole other can of worms.
    As for myself, I am working out and trying to lose weight and get myself in shape. With how violent Sammy can be with me, i need to build those muscles to be able to protect myself. I have degenerative disc disease in my neck and need surgery but cant have it because Sammy will destroy any progress with that so I am trying to build strength.
    Like you said, June cant get here fast enough.
  12. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    A couple of thoughts for you - if he copies others as much as you indicate, this can be a good thing,if only you can surround him with good examples. it also indicates that he wants to blend in, that at some level he is aware that he is uncertain of how people tick and this is the fastest way to at least be able to fudge things. If so, it also indicates that he is very bright indeed (not surprising, in Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) especially if his language skills are already as good as they are).
    Long-term, this is good news. Doesn't help much now, though.

    Also, re mother in law - if she is such a shallow person, then perhaps it is a good thing for Sammy that she is not in his world much. Her presence would be unsettling for him and could be also very frustrating - for him, as well as you. And if he gets frustrated, he will rage all the more.

    So, thanks to her attitude, she is barely on the fringes of his existence and for him this is probably a very good thing. She is going to really miss out on the positive aspects as he begins to grow and improve.

    Be gentle with yourself, good luck with the weight loss. A few of us are posting on Healthful Living, supporting each other in weight loss etc., especially where we have other health problems complicating the picture.

  13. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Have you gotten a chance to read Temple Grandin's books yet? They are life changing perspective worth taking a little time to read.

    Have you looked into respite within your social services community for Sammy?
  14. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Have you looked into Hippotherapy? It has been wonderful for both of my children... For N who is only 3, we call her our little Temple.. she had SO much Anxiety over animals, I know this is different, but she is not diagnosis'd Autistic at all... She is diagnosis'd sensory processing disorder (SPD).
    Who knows? Well she toe walks, self stims, very smart, hums, tongue thrusts, makes weird noises all day. Has huge sensory issues- noises, lick things, taste things, feels things all of that. Spins...
    She was SO scared of animals, we worked on it ourselves, because no-one new what to do... we had people with dogs come over, we caught bugs, (she screamed, she cried) we continued on.
    This led up to her going to her sisters Horse Therapy!!! just watching.
    This led up to us getting a dog. Something about that, clicked for her. She lays on the dog, humms to it, she holds her ear and does this weird thing with the fur... she kind of shakes when she lays on the dog and tongue thrusts... but the dog lets her. She has to hold the dogs ear. She smells the dog...
    This led up to her touching the horses... brushing, painting... then she got to ride bare back with me!!! She has never smile so hard or laughed so freely!!!
    She was in heaven...
    Now most of the riding is 4 and up, but because I have had horses and can ride they let us... now she gets to ride by herself with us on the sides once in awhile!!!
    I can't tell you what it does to her and for her... and for K and for all of the kids I watch- Cerebal Palsy, Seizures, Autism, Sensory etc. We are the only Mood Disorder...

    N was the only kid to be ably to touch Abby's ears... she just sat there and held one! Stroking it and rubbing it. It is so amazing to watch.

    In Tucson near were we are moving to, they have a Horse ranch were little kids can go with Issues, and just work with the horses. Not ride.
    I would recommend this Therapy to everyone.
    Our's is only 10$ a session after the initial training! We go once a week.
    Maybe you have already tried it? I am just grasping at straws here...
    I am sorry for your loss and I am thinking of you...
  15. Dara

    Dara New Member

    what is hippotherapy?
  16. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    So frustrating sometimes.....

    Ironically, I stumbled across a website today that may be helpful in searching for more appropriate services for your child.

    Also ironically, this particular organization is in the Houston area.

    I know absolutely nothing about them except what's on their website, but I was wishing I could have found something similar near us several years back because I'd certainly have checked them out.
  17. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Dara, hippotherapy ("hippopotamus" = "river horse"; the Latin names for some of the prehistoric horses include names like "Eohippus", from the Latin) refers to therapy using horses and horseriding. Sometimes having an animal to connect to can help these kids, especially with social skills. They have to learn to trust the horse and also have to learn to work WITH the horse, to treat it so the horse will trust the rider in turn. The horses they use are well trained and used to problem kids. I'd love to use it for difficult child 3, but we haven't got anybody in our area and to just go private with local riding schools would be too expensive for us. One is starting up soon, I was told a few years ago. No sign of it yet.

  18. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Since you are in Texas I know there are a lot...

    It looks like it is pretty big in Houston area and not very expensive...
    I would look into it.