difficult child finally found something he likes to do - and then BAM!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Jules71, Oct 17, 2010.

  1. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    So those who are familiar with my difficult child, know he has been more aggressive lately and was getting into fights with his friends in the neighborhood. As a result of this we have pretty much kept him in with the exception of going to his organized activities (Scouts, soccer, unicycle). He turned his attention to poker games on the computer, but could not handle the disappointment of losing - which sent him into major meltdowns. So for now - no more of that.

    He got a trumpet this summer when we were out of state visiting my husband's family. It was husband's trumpet when he was a boy. He has been playing his trumpet on the corner of our street. He hasn't had lessons and can't play in tune, but regardless he loves it and passerby's seem to enjoy his enthusiasm too - many have given him tips. Actually he made $18 yesterday and $18 a different time. AMAZING! People are so cool. Well - our neighbor yelled at him yesterday and told him to be quiet you can't make noise after 5 pm. Then again today, he yelled go home and play that somewhere else. This is the same neighbor who complained numerous times that our 2 year old golden retriever barks at him and they feel like prisoners in their own backyard of which they have lived for 34 years. As a result of his repeated complaints and my lack of energy to deal with it, we ended up getting rid of her recently (which now that I think about it may be some of the reasons difficult child is exhibiting so much anger).

    So here we are with difficult child in the house on a beautiful sunny fall day because he can't play with his friends (they don't even call or come over now) and he can't use the computer - and now he can't play his trumpet on our street. What the heck. Anyone want to come over and wait for the time bomb to go off? Poor kid. Arrgggh!
  2. Jena

    Jena New Member


    hmmm my neighbors would absolutely freak if my difficult child was out there blasting away on a trumpet! lol. they deal with-my insane dog running away and getting stuck in their garages and on their lawns due to him pulling his lead out of the ground. :)

    too bad you guys didn't go take a walk? or go get a pumpkin. that's what we did today for a a bit. good to get out now for walks before it's really cold out. hope you guys survived your day. i always find air to help difficult child's behavior or just a walk. i mean it isn't great fun for us, but such is life :)
  3. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    Jena, that's what we did yesterday. It was a beautiful sunny fall day and we went to the pumpkin patch and corn maze, then out to lunch to celebrate husband's birthday. difficult child needs CONSTANT action going on. He can't handle any down time. We just came in the house from decorating the front yard with Halloween stuff. My hands are freezing! Now we have to figure out something to keep him outta trouble for 2 and a half more hours before bed.
  4. Farmwife

    Farmwife Member

    I wonder if that "no noise after 5" thing is bull hockey? I know there are ordinances about noise but they are usually "zero noise that disturbs others" or "no noise after 9 or 10". It just depends on the municiplaity. I would look up the law in your town/county.

    I realize that these people have lived there since the dawn of time but that doesn't mean they own the whole block. They bullied you once and I suspect are trying to get by with it again. Even IF they were right all that would happen is a cop would come and tell you to keep it down unless they were busy with real calls. lol I am willing to bet if you told the dog story and brief difficult child story the couple would look like evil boogie men.

    You know what is real quiet, a kid carrying a picket sign up and down the sidewalk that says "shhhhh, mean neigbhors". : )

    Can you get him a permit of some kind to be a street performer?
  5. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    Can he play the trumpet on your front lawn? The neighbor might have a leg to stand on if your son is on the street corner, but if he is on your own property, maybe that could make a difference? It's the only idea I have. I hope that you find something to keep him occupied.

  6. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    I did look up the ordinance and it does appear he has a right to complain if it disturbs his peace --even if difficult child stood in our front lawn. What I should do is get him lessons and look into what Farmwife said about a permit for a street performer. What he likes about it is that people have been giving him tips. That wasn't his idea at first, but after the first person did it he thought - hmmm I could make some money doing this! That is what draws him to it. He has a very entrepreneurial spirit. He loves doing things to make money. He rakes peoples leaves, shovels snow, sells lemonade - even at our garage sales, he sells bottled water, pop, donuts, chips. He absolutely LOVES it. If I could get the kid a job (making money), he would love it! Oh - I am surprised the neighbor never turned him in for selling lemonade since apparently you now need a permit to do that!

    Here is the way the law is written:
    Any loud and raucous sound made by use of a musical instrument, whistle, sound amplifier, or other device capable of producing or reproducing sound which emanates frequently, repetitively or continuously from any building, structure or property, such as sound originating from a band session, tavern operation, or social gathering, and which unreasonably disturb, or interfere with the peace, comfort and repose of possessors of real property in the area affected by such noise.
  7. thunder

    thunder Guest

    Hi Jules71,

    I'm new here, and mostly am just reading the varied and helpful topics and advice, your post caught my attention.

    Your difficult child sounds so much like my own. He is 11, ADD-Inattentive type, dyslexia, sp ed classes, has agression issues/social ineptitude, 2 mg Intuniv 1xday. He has many of the same issues as yours. He has alienated all neighborhood friends through past episodes of bullying (except 1 8 year old boy who is a worse influence than my own), he is the worst loser in the free world, many times he will cry/stop/scream, snot and all if he loses. Bad thing about that is he plays football, baseball and basketball each year! I will say that as he has gotten older, he is more able to control these emotions, but at times its difficult. He has alienated most school friends due to his aggressive "competitiveness." I had a psychologist tell me he is equating his own self worth with winning or losing. I choose to believe this. He also has to be "moving." Cannot sit still and watch tv/video games. Summers imparticular are tiring, finding him something to keep him active everyday....all day.

    Anyway, yours and mine seem similar. My son would be happy to stand on a street corner and play a trumpet (or anything else for that manner). I love how so many of "our" children DO march to their own drummer...so to speak. He is doing what makes him happy! I have a mental picture of him standing out there, playing that trumpet to his heart's content. Something that many of us wouldn't have to nerve, energy or drive to do! I for one, am glad to hear of a little one that faces so many obstacles in his daily life, find something he enjoys, even if its only for a short time.

    I wish I had some advice to offer, but I don't. Seems you have your bases covered. Maybe take him "downtown" once a month to play for tips? Whether he can play or not?

    Just wanted to let you know there is someone out there that would love to have a child play a trumpet as loudly and incorrectly as he wanted to on my street corner. As long as he's happy.....
  8. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    Thanks Thunder - that is so sweet!

    My difficult child is VERY competitive. He only plays YMCA sports because they are non-competitive, no one wins, no one loses. He has been asking when he gets to play "real sports" but I can just see it now - throwing a fit and going off on someone when he doesn't make the goal or the team loses. He also does unicycle at his school which is pretty non-competitive - but he gets mad at someone if they can do something and he can't. He isn't happy for them like he should be. His pediatrician also suggested swimming as a good sport/activity for him. I like what you said about equating his own self worth with winning or losing. I think that is right on! He is very determined and wants to be the best.

    Thanks again for your reply and welcome to the board!
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I never ever would have given my dog away for the complainers. I would have instead kept the dog inside except for his potty time. However, the trumpet is another story. Sadly, he probably CAN complain and he doesn't sound nice enough to listen to you explain about your son. I'm really sorry.
  10. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    Thanks. I feel absolutely horrible about the dog and I really think he may be acting out because of it. I know he is very sad about it, but won't talk about it. The dog was very hyper. She was a purebred golden retriever with a TON of energy. It was getting to the point where she was mostly kept in her kennel all day because if she was out and that neighbor was around, she would bark at him. If she was inside the house she was all over and eating everything. It was way too much to deal with. It was like having another difficult child!! She wasn't getting enough exercise and I felt bad for her. difficult child would not go out and play with her or pick up poo and husband resenting having to pick up poo and take her for walks. It was just too much dysfunction - and then with all the complaints from the neighbor, we made the decision to sell her. I know it hurt difficult child and for that I feel TERRIBLE. He said you don't get rid of your family and she was our family. :sad-very: I feel like the worst Mommy ever!
  11. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Jules - how awesome to have a kid that LIKES to make money!!!!! Yeehaa!!! Wish I could instill that in my children.

    LOVE the idea of the picket sign - that is hilarious!!!!!!!!

    Cranky neighbors s*ck.
  12. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    Ha ha! Yah, I forgot to mention I also LOVE the idea of the picket sign. That is hysterical! I could totally see him doing that too!

    One thing he told the therapist in his first session when she asked if there is anything he worries about and he told her he worries about being bankrupt. She asked if he meant in his game and he said no, in real life - when he is an adult. I find that interesting. We have never considered or discussed bankruptcy. We have very limited money because I am a stay at home mom and my husband is the only one bring home a paycheck. I often say we can't do this or buy that because we don't have the money - I guess maybe I should not give him that info. I think he wants to earn his own money so he can buy what he wants. Poor kid should not have to worry about money problems.
  13. shellyd67

    shellyd67 Active Member

    Those mean old neighbors ! I am sure that if difficult child is on your property he can trumpet away. I have never heard of a noise ordinance in the late afternoon ??? In my town it is 10pm, but every town has different rules I know. Call your town hall and see exactly what your/difficult child's rights are. I have seen many a child marching up the street playing some kind of instrument and my teenage neighbors across the street have their own band and drum away but I encourage it knowing they are being creative and staying out of trouble ! I guess it all has to do with what each person can tolerate. Good Luck and I hope difficult child can resume his trumpeting soon !
  14. Farmwife

    Farmwife Member

    I'm curious is the trumpet is about the instrument itself or just the attention, tips and fun?

    Reason I ask is that there are some more benign options. Juggling, mime, magic, dancing, standing very still like a statue (very eerie to see that kind of performer) ect. It takes some creativity and maybe some online tutorials if a special camp (with scholarship) is not an option. I looked into a scholarship for my difficult child to go to clown camp, he really is talented in that way.

    Anyhow, there are lots of ways to have fun, use energy, be wild and silly and not poke the crabby ole dragons next door.

    Plus, maybe some research and serious practive during the winter months to prepare for the spring "performance season" will keep your difficult child focused on a goal and looking forward to something positive.

    Robin Williams started out as a mime. Everyone seems to hate mimes and I have no idea why, that type of expression takes serious skill...very quiet too ;)

    Unless of course the grinches next door want to outlaw fun and happiness in general.
  15. thunder

    thunder Guest


    Thought about your son and trumpet again last night. If he is motivated by the attention, maybe you could video his performance and post it on YouTube. Don't know that much about it. I know my son would get a huge kick out of seeing himself "on the web." Although I would also be somewhat leery of strangers being able to watch my kid. He plays football for a large organization in our town, and I know lots of parents post the games on YouTube for relatives to see. Just a thought....
  16. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    FW and Thunder - He is motivated by the attention, but mostly the money I think. It's funny because he does have things on YouTube (anonymous of course)! I like your ideas Farmwife - maybe we can come up with some quiet things for him to do. I do think though the neighbor would still find fault with it. Like if we had a lemonade stand, I think he would call and report us for not having a license and food handlers permit! My goodness!
  17. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Have him ride the unicycle on the corner while playing the harmonica...lol.
  18. Jules71

    Jules71 Warrior Mom since 2007

    Or ride the unicycle while juggling with the tip bowl on his head! :rofl: