to ask if you had a child that hit how did you stop them.

(8 Posts)
thomassodorisland Thu 14-Apr-16 08:56:48

I have a dc with asd he's 4 and has little understanding, he's not sleeping and not coping with that.
Every hours there are things being thrown and me and dp being hit.

We are awaiting psychological input just been referred but we know it will be a while the last time he was referred took 14 months they also won't give melatonin until then, we have also asked ss for help with respite but that's going to take a while to.

If any of you have had experience can you share what worked as I to am not coping and crying all the time with little sleep and need things to change asap as I hate waking up dreading what's going to happen next as life here is so unpredictable.

Fizzielove Thu 14-Apr-16 09:25:08

Could you buy melatonin over the counter in a health food shop? Won't be as strong but may help?

So sorry you're going through this it must be so hard. flowers for you and your patience.

Wantagoodname Thu 14-Apr-16 10:16:48

Sorry not much advice for you here, my 7 1/2 year old still hits when in a tantrum/meltdown she is very upset by it after she's calmed down. Best thing I find is literally taking a step back and also being to her side instead of front on

thomassodorisland Thu 14-Apr-16 12:45:43

Fizzle it's not licensed to be sold in the UK, I know in other places like America they can buy it.

Dc seems to go for my face, he'll turn to hit my face. It used to me my legs.
I have tried turning him around when he's doing it but it seems to make his anger worse.

I wish I knew away to get him to sleep as I do think a majority of his bad behaviours are from exhaustion.

BarbarianMum Thu 14-Apr-16 12:50:21

Is he hitting out of anger and/or frustration (made worse cause he's tired)? If so, then I'm guessing this is his way of communicating these feelings to you. Is he verbal? How's his communication generally?

Improvements in understanding/communication tend to lead to improved behaviour because the child is less frutrated, so this may be an area you look for support to develop.

LittleLionMansMummy Thu 14-Apr-16 13:09:20

I have a very verbal, communicative ds. He was talking very early. What he struggled with was labelling his feelings and appropriate outlets for his anger/ frustration. We focused on saying that anger isn't bad, everyone gets angry sometimes. But our behaviour when we're angry is what is important and we wouldn't accept violence. We actually enrolled ds in taekwondo classes to provide him with better focus, respect for others, boundaries and an outlet for his energy. The instructors helped reinforce the message that kicking and hitting was only ok in the controlled environment of a taekwondo lesson. It helped ds hugely, along with us watching for triggers, intervening early and helping him describe his feelings before they consumed him in a raging ball of emotion. That and consistently enforcing consequences when violence did occur (loss of privileges for example). Persistence and consistently reinforcing boundaries worked for ds but he doesn't have asd, so no experience on that front I'm afraid.

TimeToMuskUp Thu 14-Apr-16 13:21:30

DS1 has ASD and from a young age struggled with his emotions and his temper. As LittleLion mentioned above, martial arts can be a huge help. DS1 is 10 now and has done Judo (and lots of other sports) for 6 years. It's been an enormous help in terms of controlling himself and learning how to focus himself and burn out his energy.

When he began school he had a long period where he simply couldn't switch off at night time so would be pottering about til the small hours and the exhaustion meant meltdowns were much more frequent but also more intense. It sounds mad (and it is mad) but another parent of a child with ASD told me to try treating him the way you would a puppy; look at exercise and fresh air and make sure they have plenty, look at diet and ensure it's the best it can be, look at boundaries and be firm all the time, don't bend or break the rules because it really doesn't work with ASD children. It wouldn't work for all children I know, but for DS1 I made sure he did physical exercise every single day, even if it was just a couple of hours gardening or bike riding or even feeding the ducks and jumping in puddles.

We also reduced any sort of screen time. Not in a mean way; he was still allowed to watch tv when we were at home, we just made sure he wasn't sat indoors on rainy evenings watching telly for a couple of hours as it would make his brain far too fuzzy and active to try and then switch off at bedtime.

If he's not sleeping you're bound to be exhausted, but try getting him out more in the fresh air, get a huge trampoline for the garden if you can, anything so that he can physically burn himself out and you can start catching up on your own sleep. flowers If your instinct is that the exhaustion is causing a lot of the behaviours, trust it. You know him so well, trust that knowledge. Tire him out physically to the point where he can't avoid sleep and see if it helps.

MrsBobDylan Thu 14-Apr-16 13:34:46

I'm so sorry for you as I've been there and it's terrible. Melatonin made the most massive difference to our lives - we called the paed who diagnosed our son even though we hadn't had contact since then (two years) and told her we were desperate for some sleep and she sent us a sleep diary to fill in. After we'd returned it, she issued a prescription to the hospital pharmacy and we went to pick it up. We didn't see her in person at all, although he did have follow up appointments after.

DH and I were literally at breaking point sleep wise and ds behaviour was radically worsened by exhaustion too.

Re the hitting, it is a way for your son to communicate his unhappiness and anxiety. It is worth telling him that you know he is angry/upset/worried and you are going to fix it but you need his help. I often say to my son, 'show me what helps' that way he can lead me to the item he wants or point at something that he's frustrated with.

No perfect answer, but my DS hits less now he's 6, but swears at me instead. I'm not sure which I like less!

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