Newbie - Introduction and Q - What are your coping strategies?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Penguin, Jul 22, 2011.

  1. Penguin

    Penguin New Member

    I'm new here but very relieved to have found this site. Such great advice and support - I wish I found you guys sooner. Anyway my difficult child is 9 yrs old and has been diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) with possible ODD and Aspergers. My difficult child tantrums all the time - when going to school, parties, soccer etc any activity that he feels anxious about and is defiant when asked to do every day things-eat breakfast etc. We are not using medications as yet, but seeing psychologist for CBT.

    Anyway my question is - what are your coping strategies- as cares/parents? Since I can't control my difficult child I really need to handle my own life. Sometimes my husband and I are so over whelmed with the bad behaviour we feel like we are hanging on by our finger nails. I feel I cant even appreciate my easy child (who has her faults but miniscule compared to difficult child) because we are constantly dealing with difficult child. It feels like he drains all life out of us.

    Anyway if you could offer any strategies we would be grateful. You have provided such great advice dealing with various difficult child's I was wondering how you guys handle it all? We don't have the option of family support for a break so other advice would be great.

  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    I also live far away from family support. Right now Kiddo is doing well at a summer program for kids, so I don't have to pick her up right after work. This gives me a little recharge time, grocery shopping time, etc. If there are any supervised activities you can find yours will cooperate with and enjoy, take your you time when you can get it. Find out what local services have to offer as wrap-around services, too.
  3. Penguin

    Penguin New Member

    Hi HaoZi

    I'm impressed you got your difficult child into a program. I guess that's our problem. We need separation but difficult child freaks out if we try. No family member wants to take him and he wont go to camps etc. So what do you do at home to handle it???
  4. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    Our difficult child is a lot younger, but lately has been pretty intense. My husband works outside the house and is gone days at a time, so basically he has time to "escape". He is not resting since he is working (very hard), but don't have to deal with difficult child issues. Me, I'm with the kids everyday, all day (except once a week when they go to daycare so I can catch at my home office). What I found has helped me is to let husband home with the kids while I take a break alone: go grocery shopping alone, take 1/2 hour to care for my animals alone (with no kids' help). It does take some time away from being with husband, but allows me to unwind a little. We have no family around us either.
  5. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Does the CBT seem to be helping? From the sound of your post, it isn't. Depending on the REAL diagnosis, "cognitive" therapy may not work at all.

    When you say you are not using medications, can I ask why? I don't think all kids should be medicated but given what you've shared so far, do you think the quality of his life is good? I feel sorry for him having to try to deal with what is going on in his head. I dealt with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) for several years and it is the WORST feeling in the world. Trying to force someone with real "FEAR" to do things they are "AFRAID" of without helping effectively is cruel. He desparately needs to be seen by a child psychiatrist or neuropsychologist. If it really is Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and it is that bad, medications are essential until he learns to handle the anxiety without them. been there done that personally. If it turns out to be something else like Asperger's, you might need to deal with it differently.

    Do him, and yourselves, a huge favor and put your efforts into getting an accurate diagnosis. It would also be in everyone's best interest if you allowed the kid some relief with medications. That is just my opinion but as an adult with extreme Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), I can tell you that if I had such a hard time dealing with it, I really can't imagine a 9 year old having to deal with what I experienced. I really do feel sorry for him. Give him a {{{(((HUG)))}}}} for me.
  6. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    And those of us who do, may not have the support of family...
    So, its not an uncommon problem...

    Tag-team parenting... is important. Not just for yourself, but for your daughter. Each parent needs to find ways to do stuff just with daughter... take turns going with her to activities, take her out for "coffee", go for a bike ride... daughter will be feeling the stress, too, and it takes HUGE efforts to make the time, but its worth it.

    Often, we don't get a break - things are too intense - so, we create stay-breaks... like, after the kids are asleep - hot bath, or nice cuppa something with a good book (YOUR interest, nothing to do with difficult child), or whatever it is that is YOUR enjoyment and not being done because it has to be done. Have a friend who's greatest relaxation is baking... doesn't do it because the rest of the family wants it (they don't mind, but don't have a sweet tooth) - so, when she's stressed out, she waits until the kids are asleep... and whips up something special.

    The biggest coping mechanism? is to get to the bottom of it all, and start finding answers that work. But that doesn't happen overnight (as you already know).

    The next biggest? connect with people who actually understand.
    So... welcome. Grab a knot for your rope, and hang on!
  7. Penguin

    Penguin New Member

    Thank you all so much for your responses. Will try some time out when I'm able and try and do more with daughter. I am not anti medications at all and if CBT doesn't work this time (it did last time we did it a couple of years ago) then we will be off seeking help. I and our psychologist didn't really see the need for further diagnosis as I was lead to believe the treatment was the same. Now reading what you guys have said I will go for a diagnosis.

    Thanks again for your insight - you guys rock!
  8. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Kiddo goes to a local Boys & Girls Club. They've been made aware of her issues and diagnosis's. Her local talk therapist's office also works with local SpEd office. They have a summer program that's 3 days a week for social classes, anger mgmt, etc. She's been going to those as well, and she's more willing this time than she was before. She had gone to similar programs after school previously but they were a waste at the time because she simply wasn't willing to accept the help.
  9. BeachPeace

    BeachPeace Guest

    welcome here!
    I wanted to add that CBT is often not helpful in Asperger's - we tried for a couple of months and Indigo just got more anxious, more withdrawn.
    My coping is a good hot bath when the kids are asleep - even if it is at 2am lol
  10. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    If your psychologist LEAD you to believe that regardless of the diagnosis the treatment is the same, I would find a new psychologist. Anyone with any real knowledge of all the various diagnoses and all the various treatments would know better than to even imply such a thing. It sounds like the psychologist is so wrapped up in CBT that diagnosis doesn't matter. How sad for the kids he/she treats. Great idea to get an accurate diagnosis. That is the only way you will TRULY know how to approach it.
  11. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    You wouldn't be the first member to have to find a new psychiatrist that's more open, more knowledgeable, a better fit, etc. We switched once already and got a third to do testing. I was worried new doctor wasn't going to work out but since the testing she's been more open and less wary with a multi-diagnosis kid like mine. Being a neuropsychologist herself I thought she'd be experienced in this but it seems most docs aren't, even ones that in theory should be.