She needs to stop getting physical with me

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by idohope, Jun 1, 2012.

  1. idohope

    idohope Member

    I am with difficult child 1 at a sport tournament this weekend that she is competing in. It is a 6 hour drive from home. She was melting down the night before we left, which I expected. She would not pack and started to get physical with me. Blocking my way to keep me contained in a hallway, grabbing my clothes when I tried to pack my stuff. I eventually just got in bed. She would not let me turn off the light in my room (physically blocking me from the light switch) so I just got in bed anyway. She then took a aersol can of air freshener from the bathroom and sprayed it at my face from a couple of feet away. Luckily it did not get in my eyes but I had to get out of bed because the smell was so overwhelming and I could not breathe there. I was very upset and crying a bit. She knows that I was very upset with her. We had been planning to go to an amusement park after the tournament but I told her that she lost that priveldge and needs to earn it back during the trip (hard to cancel all together because there is a sibling involved). She was fine during the car ride.

    I need to figure out how to stop her from getting physical with me.
  2. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I have had each and every single one of those things....for us it usually means a medication change (increase). I see your difficult child is not on medications, some kids just can't be so it must be hard. Can you see if there is some kind of alternative therapy that may help her? neurofeedback or other kind of thing to help her take a step back and relax when starting to ramp up? I have no good answers for that kind of situation, I have done the exact same thing, including climbing into bed.

    SO sorry, sounds really frustrating.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Im sorry. Is there a reason that you couldnt just refuse to take her if she acted up so badly beforehand? I dont think I would have had the gumption to take a kid who behaved that way to me.
  4. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    We always took Kanga, even when she acted like that because (1) sports were the only thing that mildly impacted her in a positive way (2) the team would have suffered if she wasn't there and it wasn't fair to the other girls who worked so hard (3) the negative impact on the family's reputation would have hurt the other kids (they are expected to show up 100% of the time, no excuses)
  5. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member


    Can you reschedule the amusement park trip so STBX watches difficult child and you take the siblings to the park?
  6. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Idohope, sounds familiar! My son used to do that, and now he doesn't hit me, but when he's really ramped up, he will still block me, and speak loudly and close to my face so he's spitting while he talks. I have to keep my cell ph in my pocket and lock doors behind me to get peace sometimes.
    What we did was find something that totally rocked him out of his skin, and then once we followed through, used that as a threat. For example, I have called the police, and he has been in the psychiatric hospital, and while I hate to use the psychiatric hospital as a threat, quite frankly, if I'm scared, I'll say pretty much anything to get him away from me. Mostly, I just pull out my cell ph and start typing and he stops.
    However, we spent mo's in therapy and I had to practice with-him at home, and he is much, much better. I had to teach myself not to escalate (I'm claustrophobic) and when he was spitting on me and yelling, I had to calmly say, "This is what we talked about with-Dr. R. You are too close. You must be an arm's length away. Then I will listen to you."
    Mostly, he just wants to be heard, and he's filled with-anxiety.
    That's what I see coming from your daughter, too.
    Last night, for ex, I gave my son 1/2 a clonidine and told him I wouldn't listen to his issues until after he had taken the pill and given my ph back (he had knocked it out of my hand). I don't know if your daughter is into negotiating, but my son was born with-a set of lawbooks in his arms! LOVES to argue and negotiate!

    The main thing is that if you threaten, you've got to follow through.
    That way, the next time, you probably won't have to follow through ... just mention it, and the behavior stops. The kids are still ramped up, but they are reining it in, at least.
    Is she on medications? Can you give her something as a prn when she ramps up?
    Is there another way to phrase things so she doesn't ramp up as much? Or talk to her 2 days in advance instead of the night before? Or would she have an anxiety fit no matter what?
  7. idohope

    idohope Member

    Thank you for all the replies.

    Yes, as JJJ said it is a team event and it would not be fair to the other girls.

    The amusement park is near the tournament so I cant have her stay with stbx but I have been using the fact that she has to earn it back to moderate her behavior since then and it has been acceptable.

    She was on ability briefly 2 year ago. DEX was not very supportive of medications. difficult child had chronic stomach pain while on it. He cut the dose the first day he had to medicate her (psychiatrist had said to try another week or two at initial dose and make sure difficult child had something to eat prior to medication and then cut dose if that was not working so DEX immediately cut the dose). Then difficult child refused to take it at all. DEX and I communicate a little better since the divorce. Maybe I should see if he would be OK with a prn medication and then go back to psychiatrist. If difficult child really ramps up and is getting physical I could tell her take the pill or I call the police.

    She does see a therapist regularly but difficult child is mostly in denial that there is a problem and therapist has not been getting too far. Last session difficult child refused to talk to her at all. Maybe next session we will focus on this incident. therapist and I have talked about it being a priority that difficult child must stop physically hurting me, particularly as she gets older.

    In the past I have told her that I would call the police. But I felt this time that it was not physical enough to justify it.

    TerryJ2: I think it was you posting about camping out in the bathroom...forgive me if it was someone else. I know my story does sound (sadly) familiar to you and others on this board. Sorry that we all have to be here but am so glad that you all are and that there are others that truly understand these situations.
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Yes, idohope, you have a great memory!
    One thing I wanted to add, is not to use the police as babysitters. Once the kids and police catch on, it doesn't work any more and can only escalate, because what else is there?
    Yes, using a full session for just one incident, especially when it's a repeat incident, is a great idea.
    Many hugs.
  9. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    Not that I'm using this as an excuse, because there is no excuse for getting physical with anyone, but was there a reason that she was behaving this way? Was she nervous about the tournament? I know that my son gets very ramped up when his anxiety goes up. We were flying home from vacation yesterday and husband and I wwere trying to get the last minute packing done and difficult child was just going off the wall because he was nervous about the flight and I didn't have all of the answers to the questions that he was asking.
  10. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Okay, I understand now that getting to the sports event was important. Sometimes it isnt so important.