Some evenings...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Malika, Dec 12, 2011.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    are better than others. Tonight was not good. All went reasonably well until J announced before bedtime that he wanted a drink. Having stopped wetting the bed (when he was sleeping on a mattress in my room, so something psychological going on here), he has started again now that he is sleeping in his own room. I wake him up to pee every night before I go to bed but even so he generally wets the bed again - just does not wake up himself to pee. So I am obviously not keen for him to drink before bed time. He wouldn't accept the no, just rushed to the fridge and started trying to get the juice (which immediately gets me feeling cross). I try valiantly, I think, to consult and negotiate with him, trying to find solutions - it is of course too late as he is already tired and in meltdown mode. Things went from bad to worse and he started kicking and hitting me. I just don't feel this is acceptable any more, I really don't feel that it is not that he cannot control himself - he controls himself with all other adults... I'm afraid I gave him a slap on the side of the head. I don't want to do it, don't like doing it... just could not see in the moment how else to get him to understand the boundary. I am not prepared to be kicked and hit, and what if he continues doing this, when he gets bigger and stronger?? He started saying all the things about not wanting to live with me any more, not wanting children when he was grown up (curiously, interestingly). We kind of extricated ourselves from it and managed a reasonably friendly bedtime. He told me in bed that he doesn't want to go to school any more as the teacher punishes him all the time and today pushed him to the ground. Is this true?? Could be, but I thought we had all that sorted out and she wasn't punishing him any more. But of course he's so difficult at times (compared to most other kids) and he just seems like a regular turbulent little boy so... He said he doesn't want to go to any school as they would all punish him. Is this what it is going to be like??
    Of course I feel rather wretched and hypocritical. But I really do want this hitting and kicking of me to stop and now... I am perfectly aware that using violence to teach that violence is wrong is absurd and full of holes... But. We have to get this sorted out. Apart from our stuff, there are also problems at school. I know they all find him difficult, even if sweet. He is just so larger than life, so strong-willed, so intense and forceful... Anyone would find him a handful. And this gets harder as he gets bigger, of course. Meantime, without self-pity, I feel completely alone with it - the psychiatrist who was supposed to get in touch after the evaluation still hasn't done so, weeks down the line, and no-one else is offering anything concrete.
    I don't know whether today was really a bad day at school or just an average day that was no big deal. If I ask the teacher she would either give me the brush-off or say that things were fine.
    Sorry, rant over. Not feeling happy with myself but I cannot accept the vision of me continuing to be kicked and hit by an ever-bigger boy...
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Malika, I know I have said I wasnt going to reply to you anymore but I think I am going to break it this one time. I have a feeling you feel really bad for hitting your little boy. It happens. We arent perfect. I so understand the drinking thing after dinner with kids when you are trying to keep them dry at night. Having just gone through that with oldest granddaughter, I understand how hard that can be when they get thirsty right before bed and really dont understand why they cant have anymore to drink. I did let her have a yogurt then though. Seemed to be a compromise she would live with. We have these yogurts that come in tubes that she loves...dont know if you have them.

    I agree with the no aiming for the head. A swat on the padded butt wont harm his psyche. I would be more apt to use time outs for most things. It is incredibly hard when you get into those power struggles with them.
  3. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    While I have not done so in a while, I have in the passed smacked my son and I have to say that I never felt really good about it. I understand why you get to that point. You don't expect to be hit and kicked by your own child and it's frustrating. Don't beat youself up over one bad night. How did he feel afterwards? Did he feel badly about how he treated you?

    Maybe when things are calm you and difficult child can talk about what would be an acceptable thing for him to have before bed time instead of something to drink. If you and he have a plan in place maybe that will help him.

    I'm sorry that you had a bad night. I hope he was okay today.
  4. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Just want you to know that most of us have "lost it" Figure out how to avoid in the future and don't be too hard on yourself. Regarding the thirst issue, do you have any little glasses that you could us for bedtime only on the occasions when he's demanding? It might be a good idea...but you know best. Hugs DDD
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    malika, when Sonic was little he would hit, kick, bite, spit. I would carry him to his room and keep him there, even if I had to hold the door shut, until he calmed down. I do not believe that hitting a child who is prone to hitting teaches that child anything more than "Mom hits too!" Also, there is that gray area of "how much can HE control." But you are the adult. Have you ever thought of counseling just for yourself, since you are alone and without help?

    Now, I must clarify. I would not lock a child in his bedroom, I hold the door shut, so I can monitor him. Sometimes Sonic seemed stronger than me, but I still wouldn't let him out until he was calmer. He seemed to need "alone" time to cool was often successful. In his room, because he could break things, we just kept his bed and stuffed animals that he could throw when frustrated without harming anyone.

    Although violence is zero tolerance in our house, and I"m sure in yours, J. is so young. Did you ever try empying his room so that he can't harm himself and then making him stay there until he is calmer. I think they escalate around us (or an audience) and are much more apt to be able to self-calm if they are alone. And, yes, son would start out worse at first, banging on the door and screaming for us to let him out.

    There are no easy answers, unfortunately.
  6. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes, I do actually agree with you MWM. And I am seeing a hypnotherapist at the moment, to help with my "stuff" related to past trauma and how it plays out with the stress of J when he is being difficult. Or extremely bloody difficult as he sometimes is on occasion...
    I don't believe in hitting. And I know it is counter-productive. The trouble is (and it's not an excuse on my part), time outs simply are impossible because of J's great strength (as a baby he would hold one of my fingers and I could not prise it off - seriously) and the layout of our house. His bedroom is upstairs and to get upstairs one has to go up a narrow, winding staircase - simply impossible with a child who does not want to be taken and has the strength to resist. I agree that having a room with little in it and staying by the door until the child is calm would be a good solution.
    The good days... J is a delight and our relationship strengthens. On the bad ones.. I feel everything falling apart. He is a child, like all of our children, who demands special treatment. Sometimes I'm up to it and sometimes I'm not. And, yes, it is hard on my own.
  7. whatamess

    whatamess New Member

    And if J were able to articulate his feelings he might say "she controls herself with all other children...I'm afraid I gave her a hit and a kick. I don't want to do it, don't like doing it...just could not see in the moment how else to get her to understand.."
  8. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I remember when difficult child was that age. He was very violent and it was so difficult and I even had my husband. I wish I could say I never lost it and spanked but I did on occasion; always did feel bad afterwards even though it didn't happen often. Try to be gentle with yourself. Timeouts never worked for my difficult child either because we couldn't get him to stay in one place. We had him in therapy by age 5 and seeing a psychiatrist by age 4. Wish I could say there was one thing that really worked for us. With our difficult child we were constantly kept on our toes because what worked once wouldn't necessarily work again. Over time I do believe the therapy has helped. I also know that the medications have been helpful for my son (even though it has been a roller coaster ride).

    Sending understanding hugs your way.
  9. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes, indeed. He might. I am not justifying what I did or saying "I couldn't help it, there was no other way." One sees the danger of being quoted out of context! I had tried hard to do CPS with him in that instance - defining the problem, saying I understood he was thirsty (he genuinely was) but that I didn't want him to wet the bed again so what could we do? I proposed that he wear a nappy. But it was late in the process, he was too tired and wasn't having any of it - he was just shouting and screaming and bouncing up and down on the sofa.
    The incident was avoidable. The evening had been okay to that point. I needed to have a "last drink at night" plan that I had previously discussed with him but the truth was that, as I said to IC, having stopped wetting the bed and now wetting it again, I guess I had reached my personal "I'm not washing any more sheets" threshold.
    We will talk about it this morning, as we always do. It is the middle of the night here and I have woken up to go to the loo...
    Thanks for the support. I do feel bad about it.
  10. whatamess

    whatamess New Member

    I can see that you feel bad about it. My post wasn't to make you feel worse, but more to say that as frustrating as this all is for us, it is that much more so for our children. I guess because my difficult child's perspective has gotten lost so many times in the school environment that I often jump to the child's perspective over the adult's. So, not intended to bring you down, just to turn the perspective around. I am working with a consultant whose belief is that negative behavior in our children is the result of their words failing to work. The behavior doesn't need to be the focus, the verbal communication breakdown does. Hope tomorrow is a better day for you and J.
  11. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Just wondering... was bed-time just a bit late last night?
    Because - in our house, that (over-tired) is the second most major trigger (the first being hunger).
  12. buddy

    buddy New Member

    How did I miss this post? I always catch your posts.... hmmmm.....

    Well well, welcome to another club no one wants to admit they belong to. I spanked Q in the past for sure, and it was awful. Huge mistake for him because of his short term memory problems, all he got was... i am mad and need revenge becasue mom hit me. Really? that is why we do time lines in our house... to show cause and effect. sigh. it sure is not easy.

    Bottom line, I think you are right. Set a fair rule that takes into account his need for another drink... a smallish cup, or the cup goes in the fridge at 7 pm or first a pull-up then the water.

    When Q goes ape on me... well when he was smaller especially.... I would say, (sincerely, as nancy thomas can't use sarcasm, you must really sincerely want to help). Q... thanks for letting me know you are having a hard time controlling your body. I am going to help you with that. I have noticed you are very tired and for a couple of days we are going to go to bed little earlier. If you can turn it around, then on Wed. we can try the regular time of bed. (of course if it really made a difference then i would find a way to keep it, but it is really just to show him that his behaivor is commuinicating something.... If it was nto tiredness that I noticed like IC it is likely hunger these days. Or I givce him his itchy cream or whatever. Sometimes as I said in a recent thread, I have used the Time-in stuff, he has to sit with me or I may even need to hold him. We do a chore together. He needs more of my guidance, MORE mommy time. And sincerely Q, thanks for letting me know because we are team (last name) and my job is to make sure you are successful and grow to a great guy. Those kinds of statements (IF he is in a processing mood, otherwise silence until the calm and then hours later we talk or a day later as you are going to do. As we say in our family and at school (with those who do care) this is all a dance, the music keeps switching so we gotta keep up and learn new steps as much as possible.

    HUGS. I still think the thigs you say.... it seems there are some physical thing he is very sensitive to. Probably not a "disorder" kind of things but like my nephew who is adhd, for years we all knew to keep a water bottle around. This kid could not handle the feeling of being thirsty. (and often hunger too) He had these outrageous meltdowns. Now this kid is adhd, but was not on medications when this happened. He is just exquisitly sensitive to some biological things. when little it was hard to go on vacations, he was one of those kid who just did not do well away from home. Even though he was always excited to go somewhere....just too much. He is socially totally fine, a good athlete, joins clubs, has 'girl friends' and normal early teen stuff that goes on... his adhd now at this age affects academics, organization, getting chores done, stuff to make any mother nuts.....etc. Super sweet kid. I think of him when you mention J.
  13. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Yes, I think you are right, Buddy. I am still learning how J works on a physical level. I think he does have great sensitivity to such things. I was aware he was genuinely thirsty and wanted to "solve" the problem in some way to our mutual satisfaction but he just kept shouting "You don't want me to have a drink!" which is all he could understand about the situation in that moment. When I say he kicks and hits, he does not hurt me or do it really seriously, but for me there is this shadow of worry about him not grasping that he cannot do this. A lagging skill, definitely - and I unfortunately have my own lagging skills, I think.
    Bottom line is that he is, as you say, a sweet kid - very emotional and loving, affectionate. That is supposed to be typical of ADHD kids but I don't know about that, I just see it as it manifests in him. This morning he climbed into my bed and kissed me, saying he was going to be a good boy. I am going to say please and thank you all day, he announced... We were both, of course, anxious to make up and we had a nice, affectionate morning. He told me about his teacher and, with great reluctance, told me that she punishes the boys all the time and that his best friend S. told him that he is going to get a knife and cut her... This kind of imagery may well be inspired by J... He is just joking, Mummy, he said quickly. The teacher is a bit of a battleaxe really - very devoted to academic work but very strict and not always very warm towards the children.
    And... I do believe in taking a child's perspective. I think it's important. In my better, calmer, freer moments, I do do that. But... you know.