Baskets and Explosive Children

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by tired Cheryl, Sep 24, 2007.

  1. tired Cheryl

    tired Cheryl New Member is the consensus from you veterans out there that Greene's book and techniques are successful for most of our difficult children?

    Just as Phoebe had written to me in previous post, I too have bought or been given James Dobson's books, Shepherding a Child's Heart, etc, ect, etc.... I can't even remember them all.

    So, It is with trepidation that I embrace the idea that I will now be purchasing and reading yet another book! and trying to implement yet another strategy.

    From what I have seem of it seems along the same lines as what the behavior therapists are trying to teach me. Not exactly the same but at least consistent.

    I've read some of the archives and seen recent post on pre-school forum just want more reassurance that these methods have helped many of you Warrior Parents. I am realistic and do not expect miracles or 100% cure but don't have the heart (or time) to invest in another approach if it only works for a few kids and not most.

  2. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    I'd say a majority here have gotten help from The Explosive Child, but not all. For some, it was a combination of medications and behavior modification. Others, just medication did the trick. Sadly, for some nothing has worked. Rarely does behavior modification alone work.

    When I first adopted my child, I had an entire shelf on nothing but adoptions. As problems progressed, I ended up with two bookcases of books! I can't say that any one particular book gave me the help I needed, but by culling out what seemed to make sense to me, I did find some techniques that helped. Greene's book did give me some wonderful insights and was well worth the read for that if nothing else.

    For me, I'm a firm believer that the more you know, the better you will be able to help your child so I don't consider any book that might help a waste of time or expense. If I get just one tip that actually makes a difference or an insight into my child's pain or mind, the book was worth it. However, do remember this is me I am talking about. As in every case, you have to do what is right for you and yours.
  3. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    I agree that you have to find out what works best with your child. In our case I'd thrown in the towel and made an appointment to trial medications for difficult behaviors when TEC was recommended. I bought the book and wound up cancelling the appointment. It didn't solve all of our problems overnight but it was a major turning point. My difficult child eventually needed medication for anxiety (short term) but TEC strategy has made the difference between long term medication and being medication free.
  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    In our case, it's a combination of medications, Greene, and Rosemond.
    Mostly, it's consistency.
    But also, I have given up a lot when it comes to baskets. It's helped my mental health and stress level (although the house is a pigsty) and that, in turn, has helped our difficult child.
    Greene's book shows a different way of looking at it, a different approach and angle, which I had never considered b4. It's worth buying just for that angle.
    Plus, I love to read. :smile:
  5. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Terry's right - to a large extent, the biggest improvement for us came simply by looking at our child from a different angle. I noticed his behaviour began to improve, even in the time it took me to read the book!

    I have found - you take what seems relevant to you and constantly keep in touch with where you are going. For us, it IS easier and we are working together as a team much more effectively.

    If you want an advance preview, I think there is still some discussion on this book in Early Childhood. I got a copy of the book from the library first, because the bookshop was going to take forever. Plus, I get so many books recommended, I just wanted to read it for myself. Then I decided I HAD to have a copy, and it took another six months for it to arrive.

    Then husband just didn't seem to have the time to read it. He tried, just couldn't get into it. He would fall asleep too readily, too many other issues. He was wanting to help, just couldn't absorb anything from the book - not concrete enough for him. So I wrote a summary for him, to make it easier. And in writing the summary, it consolidated the information in my mind as well.

    I know some people on this site find the book doesn't help them. I do respect this (although my enthusiasm for the book may indicate otherwise at times) and I think this failure is for a number of reasons - some kids are simply wired a different way, they need yet another lateral thinking method (or worse); some parents can't stop themselves from exploding and hence undermining previous good progress; sometimes one person is doing everything right but everything else in the child's environment is conspiring against them - you have to have others on the same page, for best results.

    One thing I did see - because I was the one who read the book first, I was automatically implementing it first. This made husband's situation even worse - difficult child 3 had already been showing oppositionality, and now it was all focussed on husband. Not pretty. This made it even harder for husband to come on board - he had a lot of prior parenting techniques to abandon and for a while I think he felt like a ship without a rudder. And all this time, he had difficult child 3 sniping at him and being extra difficult for him.

    Now it seems easy child 2/difficult child 2 is the focus for oppositionality - she is having trouble trying to 'get' how to handle him, she comes across as a strict schoolmarm. And she is training to be a teacher! I hope she works it out soon.

    Good luck with it, I really hope it helps you.

    it's not a cure, it just makes life easier, if you can get this to work at all.

  6. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    If there is anything I've learned over the years about having a difficult child Cheryl, it's that knowledge is power!

    What works for one difficult child, won't work for another. What works for your difficult child, may not work a year from now. The recommended book is a good read. If for nothing else, it gives you more prespective into your child. Even if you decide not the use the basket method, there is also something you can take away. Check it out at the library instead of making the purchase.

  7. SRL

    SRL Active Member

  8. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    I found the book helpful. Well worth the investment.

    One of the mistakes I originally made with-difficult child behavior management plan was trying to work on modifying too many behaviors at once. It's usually better to pick 2 or 3 to work on at a time.
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Good point, Sheila!
  10. tired Cheryl

    tired Cheryl New Member

    THANKS everyone who responded. That was just the advice I was looking for.

  11. Martie

    Martie Moderator

    I was one of the early users of TEC---at that time, there were a lot of proponents on the board of "The Riley Method," which makes the child earn everything beyond one change of clothing and food.

    Some people knew (with me being very vocal about this) that for depressed kids, this approach not only would not work, it would be potentially dangerous due to increased suicidality. I very much agree with all those who mention that TEC helped them view their child differently. Baskets also help with what Sheila mentioned: working on too many things at once causes problems. However, for me, the most important contribution of the book was Greene's explanation of why punishment DOES NOT WORK with explosive children. It helped me resist pressure to punish; and helped me with my husband's need to punish, to "shape that kid up..."

    Not everything works for all children, but this board has over half it's children with a diagnosis of ODD and closely related disorders. It is not an accident in my opinion that the success rate using TEC techniques would be as high as it is because although Greene does not use the ODD label, that is the type of child the book is directed toward. There are significant differences between Greene's methods and b-mod. Greene is effective for some kids who become engrossed in defeating ANY b-mod system that is implemented. TEC cuts that route off because everything but safety (Basket A) is negotiable. I also think that some people cannot use TEC because they really are unable to get all their "preferences" out of Basket A. Tooth brushing is an example: with a child who explodes several times a day, most parents give up on toothbrushing if it is an explosive issue. Some, however, keep it in Basket A because having clean teeth is a health issue...ditto clean clothes, clean fingernails, clean anything... If you can really stick to a very small Basket A, and put a few things at a time in Basket B, kids actually do learn to negotiate and they "improve."

    Over the course of time, things that were "hot" Basket B issues just drop off the radar screen. I stopped saying anything about hygiene (into Basket C)when ex-difficult child was at his worst (13.5-14). He did not get any dire diseases and I cannot IMAGINE having a discussion around these issues now. I know he is twenty, so maybe that does not seem like a good example, but I also have not thought about it for years...maybe tooth brushing was still a bit of a problem at 16, but the filling of a couple of cavities took care of the "last" hygiene issue.

    I hope I haven't written too much, but I think there is a very specific reasons why Greene tends to work with the children represented on these boards and other methods tend to fail.

    Best to you,

  12. tired Cheryl

    tired Cheryl New Member

    Hi, Martie:

    Wow, it is like you have a hidden camera and are able to see into my home!! Yes, toothbrushing has always been an issue and although I just learned of Greene's methods, I intuitively took teeth brushing out of my Basket "A."

    Although, I am fanatical with easy child's hygiene (to the point that she brushes her teeth as soon as she get home from school-with no remeinder from me!) I knew that I had to deal with difficult child differently. Even when that nagging little voice was telling me that I was merely "giving in to him" I knew that there was more to it than that. Just like you, I figured that a few cavities would be the least of my problems if I kept up the toothbrusing battle.

    Same goes for clothes. He is very particular about the type of pants or shorts that he wears-only wants to wear ones with belt loops. So, except for the time when he was attending school and had to wear a uniform, I let him choose his clothes-even if they don't match etc.

    Like most of us parents, we were already implementing many of these strategies. In my case, since my mother in law is the one that heard about Greene's book and methods and told me about them, it will help them (mother in law, father in law, husband)understand many of the things that I have been trying to do for years. That in itself is going to be a tremendous help..

    Thanks for your input!