Seriously Thinking About Just Giving Up

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Bunny, Mar 15, 2012.

  1. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    My day seems to have started as well as it ended.

    difficult child came home from school yesterday and asked if he could hang out with his friend. I told him that if he went to friend's house it was fine because I had told easy child that I would take him up to the playground after he did his homework. difficult child started to melt, telling me that it wasn't fair that easy child got to go to the playground because his friend wanted to come to our house and that this was the only day that he could come over. I told him that I was going to see if he wanted to come with us to the playground and he said that was a stupid idea. Why would he want to go to the stupid playground. The playground is for idiots like easy child and that he was going to talk to easy child and tell easy child to say that he didn't want to go to the playground so that his friend could come over. I told him that no matter what easy child said, difficult child was not going to have his friend come over because of the way he was behaving.

    Then he changes his tactic to, "If you take easy child to the playground then you're doing something nice for him and it's been YEARS since you've anything nice for me! What are you going to do for me? Huh?? WHAT??" By now he has me so rattled that I can't even think straight. I kept telling him just to give me a few minutes to calm down and collect my thoughts, but he refused. I locked myself in the bathroom (easy child was in his room eating a snack, so I knew he was safe) and difficult child stood outside the door, banging on it, telling me that if I don't do something nice with him I'm nothing by a **** and a ***** and that he hopes that I die in a big black hole somewhere. Then he walked out the door.

    He came back five minutes later, still screaming. I said to him that I thought he was going to take a walk. He said that he did. I said that maybe he should take a longer one so that everyone has a chance to calm down. He said that that means that I don't want him here and that he's leaving FOREVER!! And he walked out the door again.

    Now, I'm trying to hold myself together. Tryingv to help easy child with his homework. I tell easy child that I can't take him to the playground if difficult child does not come back because I can't lock him out the house. easy child, being the easy child that he can be, said that it was okay and he would play in the back yard. He finished homework and he and I goes out back, just as difficult child is walking thought the front door. He comes in the back, tells me he's sorry fore storming off the way he did, and asks if we could talk. I tell him to give me a minute because I was helping easy child get something out of the shed. I go in, he tells me he's sorry for calling me nasty names. I accepted his apology and told him that since he was home I was taking easy child to the playground and that if he could behave I would take him to monster mini golf over the weekend (yes, we're back to monster mini golf again). The rest of the night goes relatively better.

    This morning I go in his room to check on him and he's laying in bed with the covers overhis head. He's dressed, made his lunch and just has to brush his teeth before he heads to the bus stop. I walk him and gently ask, "difficult child? Are you watching the time?" Instant meltdown. Why did I wait so long to come in and check on him? I know that he likes to leave a certain time and now it's just about that time and he still needs to brush his teeth and why can't I be a better mother and check on him sooner? Oh, and he's not going to school. husband walks in and tells him to get his butt in gear and get ready for school. I tell him if he doesn't want to brush his teeth, fine. Just put his shoes on and get ready to go, and I walked back into my room. husband follows me to say good-bye and I say to him, "I have to deal with this sh!t after being called **** and a ***** last night." OMG!! husband lost his mind! He went downstairs and asked difficult child if he called me those names and difficult child tells him that it's none of his business. husband tells him that he doesn't call ANYONE those names, especially his mother who has done so much for him and that he was going to call therapist and tell him what difficult child said to me. difficult child starts yelling that he had better not tell therapist because it has nothing to do with therapist and therapist doesn't need to know. Really? difficult child calls me downstairs and complains that husband yelled at him and why did I tell him about what happened last night since it was between me and him? I told him that it was my opinion that Dad needed to be kept updated about what goes on in the house while he's not home (I didn't say anything last night becuase I was just too exhausted to even get into it). So difficult child storms out the door, ****** off that his father knows that what he said to me and screaming that he's now late leaving the house and that if he misses the bus it's ALL MY FAULT. Actually, he leaves no early on a normal day that this morning he actually left at the time that he really should be leaving.

    Seriously, I just want to give up. I just don't care anymore. No matter what I do it never seems to help in any way. He's doing better because of the risperdal, but then we still have to deal with nonsense like this. I'm just so done this morning.
  2. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    (((hugs))) I can so tatally relate to your day. The only diffeence is I don't have a husband to share it with.
  3. llamafarm

    llamafarm Member

    So sorry. I have shared many mornings like this. husband doesn't know all the details, wait to tell him because it really is exhausting, telling him, having him go rightfully crazy... meltdowns. What a terrible way to start the day. Days like that I go back to bed (if possible) once everyone is gone or I veg. watching netflix or get a coffee. Do something you need. Thinking of you.
  4. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not



    I am so sorry you are having such a rough time - I have been there (believe me, I have been there!)...

    Seriously - BOUNDARIES.

    In my opinion, you are too available to difficult child. You spend a lot of time explaining things to him and being patient with him - with typical kids, this makes you a FANTASTIC Mom, but with a difficult child, it just opens the door for him to abuse you. He *knows* he is not supposed to call you names. He *can* help it (otherwise, you'd be getting calls from school all the time about how he called his teacher a ***** or a *****. Obviously, he can restrain himself there.) He is taking advantage of your patience and understanding - he kNOWS you are a safe target at which to rage and vent.

    Please STOP explaining things to him. You don't need to get him to "agree" with you, or to understand, or see it from your point-of-view. You just need to respond (sort of the way you would respond to a toddler).

    "I'm sorry, I cannot understand what you are saying when you yell.";
    "I'm sorry, I don't respond to *****."
    "Is that how we ask nicely?"
    "What do we say when someone does something nice for us?"

    Yes - it will feel as if you are being really "cold" or mean to him. (It did to me, too when I first tried it....I felt like the worst Mom ever! )

    Please recognize that all the stuff he is hurling at you is meant to get you to engage. Your difficult child is probably looking for a way to release all of his angry/anxious energy - and a knock-down, drag-out "fight" in a safe environment is a great outlet for him. But of course, that is not a healthy way to cope with his anger and frustration....and DEFINITELY not fair to the family.

    Your job is to STOP ENGAGING. Do NOT respond to nasty names. Do NOT argue with illogical arguments (eg. you haven't done anything nice for me in years!) State your rule (we do not call names in this house) and turn your back and walk away.

    If he runs away - call the police.

    If he hits you or easy child - call the police.

    If he destroys property - call the police.

    And let him know that you will do these things in the same calm, quiet voice. "We don't hit people. If you hit me, I am calling the police."; "If you leave without permission, I am calling the police." If he asks you why, you tell him it is your job to keep the family safe.

    My difficult child learned very quickly that if she wanted to get any response from Mom at all, she needed to speak quietly and respectfully. (Does this mean we became great friends and had a wonderful relationship? No....but it was a start.)

    Please try it.

    And try to do something nice for you today while difficult child is at school - these kids are exhausting! (Especially when you've been bending over backwards trying to be such a great Mom!)
  5. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Hi Bunny. So sorry you are facing all this. I do agree with Daisy Face's point of view, I think, while feeling that it is incredibly hard to put into practice. Made easier, I am sure, if you and your husband present a joint front and if he absolutely backs you in any such strategy.
    Your son obviously does have anxiety/anger problems and it also isn't okay to call you these things. It must feel terrible to hear it and it seems to me you were very impressively calm and controlled. I would have lost it, I am sure!
    Wish there were easy answers to these things. Hugs.
  6. buddy

    buddy New Member

    DF has some really good ideas. I get trapped in this once in a while but mostly I just wont engage in what we call here "nonsense" talk. when he tries to negotiate and is saying you should give me this or that because I deserve it.... or I have tried enough etc.

    I dont ask or tell him what to do. I self narrate. Gosh, if I wanted my mom to do something for me, I would say "please mom may I earn some time to watch NASCAR this weekend?" and then I keep doing what I am doing.

    If he yells that I am ignoring him and he is only going on and on with insults, threats, demands... I just remind him I dont respond to nonsense talk.

    Sometimes I say something like... What a bummer to lose a chance for X today. I sure wished we could do that. Well, maybe tomorrow there will be kind words.

    I rarely direct it to him straight on.

    Dont know if that would help but maybe???

    I can really relate to this so much. I dont have to worry about another kid though, that has to be so very hard.

    If Q wants to go outside to be with friends, I do have a rule that if he can't show me nice words then for sure I can't take the risk that he might say mean words to other people. He has to show me he is in a good place before he can go anywhere, even if that means sitting in for a couple of hours.
  7. keista

    keista New Member

    I agree with DF's and Buddy's advice, but would like to expand just a tad.

    No question about it that you are entitled to vent the difficult child goings on to husband. He's got the right to hear it. Unfortunately, if this only leads husband to re-opening a closed subject, there is nothing to be gained except an even more defensive difficult child. The boy calmly came to you and apologized. You accepted the apology. Case was closed, but husband re-opened it this morning. Poor kid. He did what he was supposed to do, but still gets repeatedly beaten over the head with his wrongdoings.

    Obviously he shouldn't have called names in the first place, but he already 'cleaned up his mess'. Why does he have to do it twice?
  8. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    That's exactly the rule at our house. The good (maybe bad) part is that I also don't have a husband to help/hinder things. Keista, I agree with you. husband needs to know that it happened but also that it was done (this time) and over.

    Bunny, I hear you. I am also "safe" for difficult child 1 to show his anxiety/anger to. I have 2 difficult children which means I take twice the blame for EVERYTHING and I am NEVER fair.
  9. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    Thank you. I know that you're all right, and I do try very hard to walk away from him, but he follows me, screaming all the way. Even yesterday I kept telling him to leave me alone so that I could calm down and think clearly. He kept telling me, "No!! I want an answer RIGHT NOW!! What are you going to do FOR ME??" And before I had to get easy child off the school bus I just sat on the couch, working on my neeldework, telling him that I was taking easy child to the park and that even if he conviced easy child not to go, difficult child was not having his friend come over. I would, at times, sit there, just working on that pillow, hoping that he would leave me the heck alone. And if I try to go to my bedroom he chases me up the stairs and hold the door handle so that I can't lock it.

    Later, after everyone had cooled off, I asked him if he thought that letting me calm down so that I could get a clear thought into my head might have been a better course of action. Did he think that it might have prevented things from spinning out of control the way that they did?

    His answer?

    No! He's going to keep going after me until he hears what he wants to hear. I got so annoyed that I said, "I don't know why I even bothered to ask. I should have known better," and I walked back downstairs. Then he got mad because he upset me again. Well, genius, maybe if you would just listen to reason every now and then you would not find yourself in the messes that you always seem to find yourself in.

    To be honest, him walking out the door is not really an issue for me. He goes out, takes a walk and has a chance to clear his head, and (usually) comes back and is willing and able to talk calmy. Most of the time he heads over the my in-laws' house, so I'll call her to let her know that he might be on his way there and she keeps a look out for him. Yesterday, though, he walked paster her house and further on up the block . Then a little while later she called me to say that she just looked out the window and that difficult child was headng back down towards my house, so I knew he was coming when I let easy child out into the back yard to play.

    As for doing something for me today, I am waiting for father in law's cousin to drop off his tax return information. Tonight is my stitch night at the needelwork shop that I go to, so I am out the door at 5:45 pm and I am leaving the kids to my in-laws and my husband. I am going to buy a birthday cake for the friend that I go to the shop with because tomorrow is her birthday and I thought it would be nice to get her a cake. By the time I get home the kiddies will be in bed and fast asleep. Usually on stitch nights I cook something nice because husband is not home when we eat, but I am not cooking for him tonight. It's leftover night! One less thing for me to think about.

    Thank you for all the support. It's just the bad night rolling into a bad morning is enough to drive me insane.
  10. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    Bunny I think DF, Budddy and Kiesta gave very good advice. I used to deal with the same stuff with both my difficult child and husband. I stopped telling husband after a while because he either would not react appropriately or wouldn't react when he should and I had actually asked him to reinforce whatever stance I had taken. We went to therapy to try to get on the same page but my husband just didn't get it. I eventually gave up and just delt with things on my own. I really hope you and your husband can do better. It is so important to have a unified front when dealing with an explosive difficult child. Maybe just saying to husband that he can reinforce without yelling or punishing would help. Give him examples of what you mean. He could say something like: "difficult child your mother told me what happened this moning and I am proud of you for apologizing and admitting you were wrong. I know that is very hard to do and I sincerely hope you never have to apoligize to your mother again because poor behavior towards her. She loves you so much."
  11. buddy

    buddy New Member

    That walking thing is something programs and we at home work pretty hard to teach them to do, so It is great you are cool with that. Since he doesn't seem to know to do it early enough, maybe you can make up a bunch of tickets that say take a walk, cool off or some such thing. And again, dont let him see you sweat. He may have been upset he made you angry but he also got what he wanted....control over the situation. I bet he has mixed feelings because he is not getting his ultimate goal but he is getting what he thinks is payback or some reaction he was looking for. He sounds like he has no ability to delay gratification at all. My son has this issue from time to time and it is very intense. Then add limited frustration tolerance and it is a deadly combination. Q follows me around too and will even try to sit on me if I climb in my bed. I tell him he is not allowed in my room but he still does it. He always gets a consequence but it doesn't change it because in those moments he wants what he wants when he wants it. Very toddler like. Eventually I am able to think of some thing he wants to do that is not the demand thing and I again say something like, gosh, I really wanted to see if I could buy Q some shorts today.... that would be so much fun. His mind starts to shift and I know even if he says I dont care ... I dont say anything like "yes you do" or "well you have to show me respect" or anything because it just makes him need the last word. I just wait and usually within ten minutes he is saying, ok I will show you we can go shopping today to get some shorts. Last night when that happened, he ended up cleaning his room, all his idea. I HATE how long it takes and how impatient I feel inside and sometimes resentful that I have to spend so much energy on the most simple requests, like just give me five minutes to calm down and think.

    So we have these words that are laminated (and I have copies because I simply expect he will rip them, I do not make that a power struggle) and I just hand him the card. If I can't get to them I still do the backwards finger counting and for some reason he gets the message probably 75% of the time that he needs to leave so we can work it out later.

    I dont know if any of this would help you but even if it doesn't, please know I really do get how relentless they can be and how wearing and frustrating it is to live with a kid who just does not have better skills to get what they want. It is intense and I think at times it would be nice to quit too. I think most parents do at some point but we surely must feel that way more than the typical parent. Is there any chance for home services so someone can be there and take him out some days???
  12. remclick

    remclick Guest

    Just want you to know we are living the same scenario too. difficult child and I have a blow up and then husband gets mad at him all over again because he was mean to me. I do think not engaging them is the only way I know to go with it. I can't always find a way to get away either (and there are 3 younger PCs in the house usually too) but I do what I can and I say I need time away for a while and walk out front or back. Those door struggles just get me into more trouble so I have abandoned them.

    I would like to go back to work too but after mornings like those that happen a lot I just want to sit and watch tv. They exhaust me.

    It helps me to read this board and know that I am not alone and you are not alone either. It also reminds me that a lot of these people have it way worse than I do.

    Good luck and you do deserve some down time.
  13. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hugs, Bunny. been there done that.
    He sounds very much like my difficult child, especially following you around and yelling and screaming. It's your fault ... that he's following you and screaming at you? Uh, yeah, right ... ;)

    I swear, I live with-these two sentences: "I'm sorry, I cannot understand what you are saying when you yell.";
    "I'm sorry, I don't respond to *****."
  14. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I actually think your husband did a good thing. He needs to tell your son in no uncertain terms that NO ONE is going to call HIS WIFE those names anytime and he means it. He doesnt care if it is his son, a homeless bum or some stranger on the street. He simply will not tolerate it. Now the best time to tell him this may be at a family meeting instead of in the morning when he is already upset but your son needs to hear this loud and clear. And the wording truly has to be HIS WIFE not your sons mother.

    Your son sees you as his personal slave and puppet. You belong to him alone. You are to do his bidding and everyone else can go to hades. He needs to find out fast that he isnt number one in the family. You and your husband are the head of the family and are a team. The children are are just that...children and are one is better than the other. No one gets to have more attention than the other or gets to make demands just because they think they have power. If they try to exert power, they lose power. He needs to have some sort of punishment imposed on him for every time he follows you around and screams at you. Now this is going to have to get creative because you cant just get into it with him right then. I would use some form of behavior mod thing where you start with a jar full of ping pong balls and every time he does these kinds of behaviors you simply go and remove a ball. Dont say a word. If at the end of the week he has a certain amount of balls left, he is able to turn them in for a reward you have set in advance. You would have to do this for both boys though and get different colored balls. Write everything out so he understands. 5 balls means a mini candy bar. 10 balls means he gets to ride his bike for x amount of time, 20 balls means a trip to the dollar store. 20 balls means he gets a friend over.

    I think you are going to need like a hundred balls for this for a week because he is soooo tough.