At what point does it become a worry?(11 Posts)
Apologies in advance, this is going to be a long one.
DD is 5.5 years, almost at the end of her first year at school, an only child. She's always been needy, has still only slept through a handful of times, wants to be permanently physically attached to me during the day. She's bright and her teacher has no worries on that score, but socially she's struggling.
She didn't go to nursery but went to a number of clubs and activities instead. She would only stay at one of these alone, and only once she'd been attending for 2 years. She's not settled at school this year and often cries going in. She says she has no friends (which seems to be quite common) but I'm not sure how true this is. Her teacher is no help, and just makes vague statements about her having friends but can't tell me who. While I see other kids go for play dates and get party invitations she's yet to receive either.
I've invited kids to our home, but things don't always go well. For example, recently a child fell and grazed their knee on the way back. The child cried and DD lost it. She was screaming at them to shut-up and ran away and screamed and cried for over 30 minutes. This is a fairly standard reaction from her to a child getting hurt.
When we've been invited to parties in the past she sits on my knee and cries until we leave. She can't stand the Happy Birthday song.
I took her to a fair at our local park this weekend. She's wanted to go on a carousel for about 2 years. As soon as we got to the fair she wanted to buy something from one of the stalls and leave. I suggested the carousel, she refused to even go over to look at it. We spent the rest of our time playing in the woods away from everything - she was happy with this and hasn't complained of missing out on the fair at all.
Today I got a new doormat. I knew she would be unhappy about this, but I didn't anticipate that it would cause 2 hours of tantrums when she got home from school.
That's just a snippet of things that have happened over the past couple of weeks. It's exhausting constantly second guessing how she'll react to a situation. Are these ordinary 5 year old things? At what point do these stop being typical kid behaviours?
Not really. You shouldn't have to anticipate a five year old being cross because you bought a doormat!
It sounds like she likes everything to go her own way. How she anticipates it to be I mean. Not in a spoit way. Control I suppose it is.
Can you do some unpredictable things with her? Some science experiments. Make a mess. Also, make mistakes yourself. Drop an egg when you are making a cake that sort of thing.
It sounds like she's highly sensitive. There's a good book about it (I found it helpful anyway):
Understanding the Highly Sensitive Child: Seeing an Overwhelming World through Their Eyes www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1507880022/ref=cm_sw_r_apa_XzEvxb1TKVV7T
My DD (5) also got annoyed when we got a new doormat. The next day she was all "ooh I love the doormat"
OP go to the GP and ask about having her assessed by a paediatrician. She's obviously suffering from a few different things and you need answers.
I would agree with approaching a GP with your concerns and requesting a referral to a Paediatrician. I hope you get some support and answers OP
I agree with asking for a paediatric assessment. The issues you describe could be signs of being on the autistic spectrum (although obviously this might not be the case). In the meantime, Google social stories and see if using this technique helps with any issues.
Thank you everyone (for some odd MN reason your usernames aren't visible to me!)
I think you're right about her liking everything to be very predictable, and wanting to be in control of situations - she's certainly adverse to new situations. I am going to give some of your 'messing up' suggestions a go and see what happens. I have a feeling that so long as I don't make a big deal of it she'd be fine, but if I got upset about it she'd not be able to cope...
Highly sensitive in an overwhelming world sounds spot on - I will get hold of a copy of that book, it sounds really interesting.
I've tried the GP (and previously HV) before, but when they see her she's calm and usually quite happy to talk to them completely sensibly about anything. One-on-one with a grown-up she seems at ease and they send me away with a bee in my ear about being over-protective. School are the same. She works hard and does well in class and they're happy with that. It's only once she's out of school that she looses it. I'm not sure I know how to approach them when it seems as though I'm the only one to see these things.
And yes - I can totally see her coming home tonight and commenting on how lovely the new doormat is
Obviously none of us can possibly know, but some of the behaviours you describe do sound quite extreme, especially if it happens every time. All children have off-days/melt down when hungry and tired, but I would worry if they weren't coping most of the time.
How about if you kept a diary for a few weeks about things that are ott (and also things she copes ok with), then make an appointment with the gp without her - so that you can be completely open about her behaviour (I imagine you were holding back in front of her).
I'm sure you're aware that ASD presents differently in girls, and is harder to spot. Also that children with ASD sometimes put in huge amounts of effort to cope at school, and then fall apart when they get home, and that this gets harder and harder for them as they progress through school and the pressure increases.
You know your daughter. If your gut feeling tells you that there's a problem, then keep following it up. If she just grows out of it, great. If she does need help, then the earlier that's identified the better for her.
My little one has sensory processing issues, and some of the things you describe sound like she could be have sensory overload which then leads to behavioural problems.
Trying looking up sensory processing disorder to see if any of it rings a bell, another great book available from Amazon is The Out of Sync Child. Good luck
Check for Asperger's.
I don't suppose you would, but please don't blame her for any of this. She's not being awkward or obstructive - these aspects of life are hurting her.
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