Our SN area is not a substitute for expert advice. While many Mumsnetters have a specialist knowledge of special needs, if they post here they are posting as members, not experts. There are, however, lots of organisations that can help - some suggestions are listed here. If you've come across an organisation that you've found helpful, please tell us. Go to Special needs chat, Parents with disabilities, SN teens, SN legal, SN education, SN recommendations.

In a mess...

(33 Posts)
neverputasockinatoaster Sun 07-Apr-13 18:49:31

Posting here because if I post anywhere else I'll get a flaming and I know I'm awful so I need advice....

DS is driving me bonkers. He is so violent when he doesn't get his own way. Now the rational part of my brain tells me he is angry I want him to, for example, pick up toys in his room because it is not part of his plan for the day and it is change.. But the limbic (I think) part of my brain goes into stress mode as soon as he starts shouting and I find myself making all sorts of ridiculous threats like if he doesn't help tidy I will tidy all his toys into the bin. (Yes, I know I'm stupid) Then he gets even more anxious and comes at me with an absoltely evil and viscious look on his face and it scares the shit out of me for 2 reasons - 1 is that he will hit and hurt me and 2 is that if I don't stop this he will hurt someone else one day..... So then I scream at him and manhandle him away from me and it all gets horrible. I don't hit. I smacked him once when he was 3 and he has never let me forget it. So if I can control myself enough not to hit why can I not stop yelling at him?

I know his temper is all my fault because I yelled at him so muhc when he was little and I didn't know he was ASC . I thought he was just naughty and was helpless at my inability to control a 3 year old... He learned to yell and shout.

So, what do I do? I realise we need a routine for room tidying so that it happens at the same time each week and it needs to be up on a timetable so he can see that, say, Tuesday is room tidying day. I can sort that easily and have begun to make a chart he can see and I can incorporate that into my weekly session of writing events onto a calendar. I can do that.

I know I need ot stay calm but I find that so hard. I am currently trying to imagine there is someone watching me....but that has a negative effective because I get so hung up on the invisible person judging me so I get even more stressed. So, that isn't the technique for me...

I don't want it to be my kids posting on mumsnet in a few years tiem about their abusive mother......

To be clear - I know I'm dreadful, I know it is wrong and I know I should be ashamed of myself and my lack of control over my temper - I am ashamed of myself. I can't talk to anyone in RL about this, i really can't. There is no one to help me. I was offered a 123 Magic course many years ago but then the HV got back to me and said it would be quicker if I just got the book myself from amazon.....

I want to be a better parent. I want my kids to grow up in a calm and peaceful household.

cansu Sun 07-Apr-13 19:01:31

firstly i sympathise. parenting children with asd is hard. my ds can kick off over the slightest thing and he is seriously hard work. I often find myself wanting to go mad, but mostly I stay calm because I find that my anger inflames the situation and makes everything 100 times worse. I often walk away and I often clear up or whatever without speaking. Not always and I am far from perfect. I think you have to see the bigger picture. I know that ds is unreasonable. I also know that if I feed into it he will spiral out of control and I will regret shouting at him later when he is unmanageable and trying to hurt me. Then I will be crying and feeling like a shit parent. When it kicks off try and see where it could lead and head it off or at least aim to make things no worse. I also find it helps if my dp is around so we can take over when the other is close to the edge. Holidays are the worse time. I think blaming yourself for how you behaved when he was little is not helpful. I was less good when he was little too because I was also learning how to cope with him and his disability.

Ineedmorepatience Sun 07-Apr-13 19:10:05

Never, the first thing you have to do is stop beating yourself up. it is great that you want to be a better parent but dont knock yourself. It is damned hard work bringing up kids and add Asd/c into the mix and its 10 times harder.

I have to say we dont really do regular bedroom tidying which is probably why the Dd's rooms are always an disgraceblush

I think one of the hardest things to learn is to chose your battles, make your life easier not harder. Walk away from confrontation and take some deep breaths.

What kind of storage does your Ds have, Dd3 has some ikea cupboards with coloured draws with lids [trofast]. When we tidy her room we just chuck everything in the boxes or in a bin bag and then vacuum once the floor is clear. Actually Dd3 is the tidiest of my 3 and I think it is because she likes to put things into boxes.

Why dont you just say sod it for the rest of the week and try to do something nice instead, I know thats a cop out and the work has to be done at some point but hey, it will still be there and you sound as if you need cheering up.

Good lucksmile

AgnesDiPesto Sun 07-Apr-13 19:13:40

I shout at my NT kids all the time, they are infuriatingly lazy. DS3(ASD) is actually the easiest to get to tidy up as he is so rule driven.
We are v.v. lucky to have ABA so all we have to do is not mess up too much the work they have put in. Without that we would be lost.
But its important to remember the shouting generally comes from a place of total exhaustion, not abuse, so don't be too hard on yourself. If I were not so tired all the time I would cope better and shout less. I also never get a break - other people go away for weekends and grandparents have the kids - we can never get a night off as no-one can have DS3 and even if they did he would be so distressed it would not be worth it
I've lost count of the times I have thought my neighbours probably want to report me to SS for shouting all the time.
Do you get any help at home eg Direct Payment worker - if so I would suggest getting them to help him clean his room. My friend's son obsessively hoarded stuff for years and would never let her clean up but now he's an adult and has a helper he will clean up with them.
Sometimes getting other people to tackle it and then hand over to you once the routine is in place works when all else has failed
Thats what I do with ABA - I tell them I need a programme for x - they do one, get DS to do it (he complies brilliantly for them) then they fade out as I fade in
Maintaining it and not slipping back is really hard (for me) because I have to be consistent all the time and am usually so tired I'm not good at consistent, so sometimes we have to go back and start again but thats another story...

Ilisten2theradio Sun 07-Apr-13 19:22:07

DS used to hit our a lot out of frustration. We together with school spent quite a lot of time working on anger managment issues. I bought several books from Amazon and there is a website called something like get your angries out which school used too.

I was worried too, about how he would be when older if we didn't get a hold of it and stop the violence in its tracks. He is now 12 and will shout and look evils at us but is no longer violent.
We are working at the moment on this too - but I also shout and so it is hard. I am also working on not shouting.

When I can remember, it is so much more effective to use a very quiet calm voice and speak to them without raising yours. ?The situation does not escalate so much.
I find myself saying things like " I know you don't want to but I need it done because......" a lot - usually about how horrible a messy house makes me feel, or a good one since we had mice in the house (from the understairs cupboard - endemic along our terrace) - that I need to be able to see the floors to hoover to keep the crumbs away that might attract mice.
You need to think creatively when finding reasons and they need to be logical.

We all loose our tempers and ASD children seem to push those buttons that bit more. It is a long slow process to learning to control your own shouting, as I well know.
I also find that reading things about ASD over again will remind me about how they think and that I must be more symmpathetic to it and I must be in control. It works for a while, then needs re-doing to make me think again.

Mckenngp1 Sun 07-Apr-13 20:23:40

I have learnt that when I'm getting too shouty, it is because I really need a break from the kids. We have no help with the children at all and dh works long hours for himself so it is difficult to escape especially in the holidays. I have taken to using Bach rescue remedy which actually works for me and I really didn't think it would do jot. When the children are quite happy watching a DVD I have a 10 minute bath or paint my nails. I have downloaded some free relaxation apps and I use those to get me off to sleep. Oh and I have just bought some maca capsules as they are reputed to give you endless energy! I know it sounds patronising but I have found making a little time for me to be quite refreshing!

neverputasockinatoaster Sun 07-Apr-13 20:27:53

Thanks all.

Regarding storage DS has oodles of trofast storage and tidying just involves chucking stuff in boxes! The biggest issue is books - he has hundreds and his bookshelves are over stuffed so he struggles to put them away..

And you are right - I am exhausted. I don't sleep well due to my weight and I never feel rested. DS isn't serious enough to get DLA or anything like that and I can leave him with my mum when she comes but her coming here is another flash point because the thiings that work for us are not things she approves of and I crave her approval (long boring story) that I get stressed about not doing things her way and .......

DS craves routine and I find routine so very difficult!

I shall endeavour to stop beating myself up and I shall dig deep for my calm voice when all is chaos!

neverputasockinatoaster Sun 07-Apr-13 20:28:51

Also we have an ant issue so I shall use that as the reason why we need clear floors for frequent hoovering!

Badvoc Sun 07-Apr-13 21:01:10

I think picking your battles is a major learning curve (or at least it has been for me)
So the room doesn't get tidied a very day?
Is that the end if the world?
Is it that bad?
Is it less bad than the shouting and violence?
If so, then dont tidy!
Using a quiet voice is so much more effective ime as they don't expect it.
It can, of course, drive them even more mad smile but it can help you feel in control which is important at times.
Stop being so hard on yourself.

CouthySaysEatChoccyEggs Sun 07-Apr-13 21:27:18

I've recently discovered Bach Rescue Remedy too. It IS helping, more than I thought. As is vanishing into the kitchen for 5 mins...or the loo, as the loo has a lock!!

The constant exhaustion IS what causes the shoutiness - that and I have realised that I have a SERIOUS PMT issue.

I try not to ask too much of the DC's when I'm due on, because the inevitable refusals because it's not in their plan for the day escalates too quickly as I CAN'T control my shouting then.

Do you find it's worse then, or just all the time?

I agree that a timetable can help.

Also, if he has too many books, let him go through them with you to 'thin' them out. Either put them in the loft for a younger sibling / cousin / friend, or ask him to do a book sale or something to raise money for ASD research...

(Am currently in the throes of trying to get two DS's on the Spectrum to thin out their toys and books...VERY stressful, for both he AND them!!)

Make sure you only have in the room what you have storage for.

Pick battles wisely.

I know that the fact that I haven't had a break in over a decade isn't helping the exhaustion levels and therefore shoutiness levels.

CouthySaysEatChoccyEggs Sun 07-Apr-13 21:28:12

Oh, and I only ask for the room to be sorted once a week, at the weekend, in a Saturday. Any more often than that is just too often! It's not worth the rows and violence...

Ruggles Sun 07-Apr-13 21:43:50

Please don't be too hard on yourself. I did quite a lot of screeching at my DS who is 4. So did my DH and everyone else! We've been doing the 123 Magic for a month and it really works - or at least it has for us. I bought the two dvds as don't have to persuade DH to read a book wink. I really like it as its a very clear-cut system and because I know where I am, I don't need to lose my temper. DS wasn't too impressed with the new routine, but it worked quite quickly. Problem will be sticking at it... We haven't watched the second one yet.

Badvoc Sun 07-Apr-13 21:45:01

Hmmm..is rescue remedy any good?
I need something that's for sure!

Ruggles Sun 07-Apr-13 21:47:39

Its wonderful grin. Nelson's do a very good one too with no alcohol in it and our local flower man makes his own too. I really think they help.

justaboutalittlefrazzled Sun 07-Apr-13 21:54:33

Yes I find rescue remedy helps.

Oh, and this bit -

"I know his temper is all my fault because I yelled at him so muhc when he was little and I didn't know he was ASC . I thought he was just naughty and was helpless at my inability to control a 3 year old... He learned to yell and shout."

- total crap. Not your fault at all. Lose that thought.

Badvoc Sun 07-Apr-13 21:58:03

Op.
I told my son on one very fraught day (I was trying to HE him and also had a very clingy 15 month old to look after ) that he was lazy.
My severely dyslexic son.
Not my finest hour and something I am very very ashamed of.
Give yourself a break.
X

Badvoc Sun 07-Apr-13 22:00:04

I am amazes at stuff I once thought mattered...Honestly.
I used to iron handkerchiefs fgs!!
(Yes I had that much time on my hands!)
I am a slattern now compared to what I used to be like.
And you know what?
The sun still rises and the world still turns.
My house is just a bit dustier smile

AgnesDiPesto Sun 07-Apr-13 22:01:02

my rescue remedy is a glass of baileys blush

CouthySaysEatChoccyEggs Sun 07-Apr-13 22:03:48

grin Baileys is calling me too - and I very rarely drink due to my other meds!!

Badvoc Sun 07-Apr-13 22:05:32

Agnes...do you spray it on, or just pour and gulp!?
smile
I have ordered some (rescue remedy, not baileys)
Being of Irish extraction, I am afraid I rather view baileys as a waste of good whiskey smile

neverputasockinatoaster Sun 07-Apr-13 22:06:01

See I found 1 2 3 Magic just induced more panic stricken rages in DS! I stuck it out for 6 weeks and was more bruised and battered by the end of it than I had been at the start.

Rescue Remedy on my shopping list.

I only ask for his room to be sorted once a week. More than that is too much for me! When we are on form it is a 20 minute job to pick up toys, change bed, dust surfaces and hoover floor. So actually he is only involved in about 10 mins of that. The problem comes when the routine slips a bit ie when I am in the throes of work based pissed offed ness and I can't face the house work!! Then if it doesn't get done it becomes a huge undertaking!

And yes, whoever asked, things are worse when I am faced with PMT! I feel as if I am about to boil over!

We do ask for the living room to be cleared of toys each night and actually he doesn't kick off at that... I think that he, like me, sees the enormity of a task and can't see how to break it down (just like his mum!) Hence the tasks I need to do each day to keep the hosue under control!

Thanks for the support. Now I need to go and rescue the washing I left outside (I'd leave it but DH would go into an spin about laundry thieves grin ) and then I shall crawl into my bed. Tomorrow I have to take the tv and digi box back as they have both catastrophically failed!

AgnesDiPesto Sun 07-Apr-13 22:10:10

You may be entitled to direct payments for you as a carer - most LAs only do one assessment - of the child - decide not disabled enough and therefore not eligible for any help. legally they must do two assessments - one for child and one for the carer.

Don't understand why any child with ASC would not be eligible for any DLA? Have you tried applying?

I am rubbish at routine too.

neverputasockinatoaster Sun 07-Apr-13 22:28:09

Agnes I have always assumed that DS would not be eligible for any element of DLA... I look at the hoops that people with DCs with really severe problems have to jump through.

DS is diagnosed with Asbergers, is not on an IEP or IBP at school (although I am fighting that one tooth and nail - he is at school in Notts and getting SEN support there is nigh on impossible), he doesn't need excessive supervision nor is he a 'flight risk' when we are out and about...... He just needs a structured life and help managing his emotions...... (Just - hah!)

I kind of feel they would laugh if we even tried... plus I'd feel a bit guilty when I know of people who are being turned down.

I work so assumed I'd not be counted as eligible for Carer's.

Just been in to DS who has kept himself awake reading........ Tomorrow will be such fun!

MareeyaDolores Sun 07-Apr-13 23:19:31

DLA is simple: how much extra care is needed (3 bands: some / quite a lot / 24 hours) and whether outdoor mobility is affected (2 bands). Calculated by adding up the time spent looking after the dc compared with an average non-disabled dc of the same age. Same with how far they walk / amount of supervision needed outside. That's it. Simple.

The form isn't at all simple, however, and that's what lets people down. Either cos they struggle to complete it, or cos the DLA office people misinterpret their answers. The cerebra guide helps.

MareeyaDolores Sun 07-Apr-13 23:24:49

We haven't sorted the mess issue though. Eventually I realised that all the dc really do with their toys is 'container play' (tipping them out) or 'advanced container play' (arranging them nicely, then losing interest)

So I hid most of them for 2 months, got rid of the ones they hadn't mentioned, and kept anything with 'bits' locked away. Cruel? yes, a bit. Necessary, proportionate and essential for my sanity? Definitely.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now