difficult child's new 'IEP-meeting'; some progress, tons of new issues

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by SuZir, Jun 10, 2013.

  1. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    We have a meeting with difficult child's sport psychiatric/mental coach who is kind of his 'case carrier' in this situation. One who keeps it all together for difficult child. He started working with difficult child a year ago and has been extremely helpful. difficult child will be changing teams soon but will get to keep his mental coach, either paid by the new team or husband and I. This is a service difficult child really needs to navigate in his life and career and this mental coach has been really extraordinary.

    difficult child's situation has changed drastically in that year. A year ago he had a great year sport wise behind him, but lots of behavioural problems that started to unravel. Last year he struggled mightly with sport and there were also some huge blows in personal life, but apparently he has really progressed with his behavioural goals. And that is huge for his everyday life. I'm beyond pleased.

    Biggies were verbally very violent lashing outs to his team mates in unpredictable times and with no visible reason (to them.) Some sensory accommodations for most difficult situations, relaxation techniques and learning even to verbalize his issues with others a little bit have made a huge difference. Lashing out to team mates have gone drastically down and are not any more a big issue. He still have issues on standing his ground, but it doesn't end up to lashing out any more. He also learned to take corrections for his behaviour from his team mates rather well, when they brought it up a way he was able to understand.

    Other big one was related to this and was his peer relationships especially with guys closer to his age. In that there was also lots of progress. With some he still doesn't come along too well, but he is friendly with most of them and even was able to make an actual, bona fide friend from the guy who came to the team late in the season and is only two years older than difficult child. And that person being very social and well liked also made difficult child part of their younger player's clique and difficult child made friends with also other younger guy in team. And add to that two guys difficult child made friends with in local college's boardgame club he is likely having more actual, real friends than ever before. His skills with that area have bettered a lot and he is also much more confident on that area so while these friends will be left to this town, we can be hopeful that those skills will carry on and help him in the next environment. This is a thing I find the coolest.

    difficult child's relations to authority were more complex and less progress was made. He really clashed with his positional coach and his habit on splitting came up. Especially the later part of season was difficult between the two. difficult child also didn't want his current coaches to attend this meeting (which is partly understandable, some of the issues talked were very private) but did ask a former coach/important mentor figure for him. However mental coach had interviewed difficult child's coaches and had their answers on difficult child's progress. According them difficult child's attitude has been bad when times have been tough, but he did made some progress on how easily he ended up with bad attitude. difficult child's taking care of his stuff, tardiness issues and other small behaviour issues have got much better and mostly very close to average so they are not considered the problem areas any more. Schedule changes can be an issue though.

    In lying and taking accountability he also made great headways first, but tough times made those worse again. Or it changed to relationship dependant. He continued to be more honest to those he was having a good relationship, but slipped back to lying, lack of accountability with those he was having rocky relationship at the moment. So that is something he still needs to work hard for.

    But mostly it is new issues that take prevalence now. Sleep (still a huge issue), anxiety, treating his PTSD, practicalities of that in his changing situation, preparing mentally to some rather unpleasant possibilities in future, dealing with the baggage he does already have in new situations etc. Social skills of course continue to be in focus too.

    We still don't know about difficult child's future employer. He currently has two back up plans and few negotiations going on that heavily depend from things beyond him. We should be wiser a month or month and half from now.

    difficult child will continue to need some sensory accommodations and some other extra help. I also told mental coach my Auditory Processing Disorders (APD) speculations and gave him some material about it some time ago. They did test it a bit with difficult child and difficult child did find it easier to understand and focus in background noise when using the background somewhat silencing and speech strengthening walkie talkie system. But to know if that would made any difference to his issues during practises it has to be tried in that. MC hopes he can talk a new team to try it, wherever he does end up, but we will see.

    One worse thing that came up, difficult child didn't say it right out, but it is what I gathered, is that difficult child and his girlfriend are in rocks, maybe for good. They have not split, but it could be close. Okay, I'm not really a fan of his girlfriend and I can well live with them breaking up. But I, very selfishly and thinking the best of my own, am not too happy with timing. difficult child has had a horrible last nine months. He really wouldn't need anything more. And in this situation being in relationship and living with girlfriend most likely made him feel much more normal and being a man, and all things considering loosing that hurts a lot.

    difficult child had also given his therapist and psychiatrist talk with his sport psychiatric and now we have more than just difficult child's version of their recommendations in this situation. Apparently his therapist really thinks it wouldn't cause too much damage for difficult child to take six months or a year break from exposure part of therapy and to do just the stabilizing parts if he will not have a stable therapy contact available for that time. Stabilizing parts are much less intensive, don't require the same amount of trust from difficult child and can even be done partly through Skype. difficult child absolutely needs to continue also exposure parts, but it doesn't need to be just now, if things get too complicated. It looks like difficult child current medications could be a hit and those and stabilizing parts should keep him stable for the time being.

    And something I found funny: I did voice my worry about difficult child being able to find a new therapist he will click with and trust. You should had seen difficult child's deep, deep sigh, literally rolling his eyes and telling me that "Mooooom, it is not psycho-dynamic therapy or analysis, it's not about transference and my relationship with therapist" and other long suffering sigh. I'm proud of myself I didn't laugh onto his face but managed a "Yes honey, but..." husband found something extremely interesting from a roof but also manage not to laugh. I don't generally appreciate it when I'm eye-rolled at, but goodness gracious it can be funny when your kids are growing up and almost there ;) (Okay, to really understand the funny in this, you should know my pouting, passive aggressive, reserved boy, who absolutely declines giving even a smallest bit of himself if he doesn't totally trust the authority figure other side of the table and to whom trust really don't come easy.)
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2015
  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Wow, sounds like you "Insolent Whelp" is doing his best. More importantly, perhaps, it sounds like he is making progress on the maturity road. When I read your posts I often find myself wondering "where would he be if he did not have his sport talent?" I rather imagine you and husband would be signing up for intensive therapy pronto. LOL DDD
  3. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    It sounds like he has made amazing progress. I'm reminded of what happens with the little kids. Big progress in one area means going backwards or stalling in another for awhile. His sport will get worked on but not just right now. I'm impressed with his progress. :)
  4. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    DDD: Motivation is a beautiful thing ;) And yeah, we would be so screwed, if difficult child didn't have that motivation. Of course I could hope he would had had other passion to give him motivation if he didn't have his sport, but... Yeah, not likely. We got really lucky in that.

    I'm rather proud momma over hard work he has done. And made sure to gush over the matter when we had a short private moment after the meeting before we had to head home.

    While many of the biggies are left, some of these smaller things can make a big difference on his everyday life. Not always being the one in trouble but being better able to keep up and fit in would mean a lot for his quality of life. And making friends skills of course are a biggie. Huge quality of life matter.
  5. What a great report! Thanks Suzir for sharing all of that with us.

    It really sounds to me like he has made huge progress in some areas this year, many areas, actually. I'm glad you have this occasion to be so proud of him and that you got that moment to tell him how proud you were of him. :) It sounds like he is really on his way forward.

    Another way to think about the possible break up with girlfriend is that maybe this will be a weight off his shoulders because it must be tense and difficult a lot of the time if things aren't going well for them. Sad yes but a relief too (maybe).
  6. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    Yeah, breaking up with girlfriend could turn a good thing especially long term. I'm sure they (have) love(d) each other in their own way and how they are capable in this point of their life. But I don't think it is a relationship that would be good for either of them in the long run. And even in the short term, I'm sure it has been stressful for them lately. And getting rid of his girlfriend's expectations for him could be good for difficult child both personally and career wise. On the other hand, nature of some of difficult child's issues are such, that having a steady girlfriend is a big thing for his self-confidence and how he sees himself. And on the other hand, if he is single, and because athletes tend to be much too popular in bars for their own good, it is all too easy to develop some new bad habits. Both hanging in bars more than he needs to and to develop some womanising behaviours I would not be happy at all with. (I'm not a prude, but I seriously despise how some guys in difficult child's sport treat women.)