I've got nothing left(33 Posts)
Not trying to feel sorry for myself, I'm at the end of my tether with DS. He has HFA. He's 12, well into puberty, voice breaking etc. He's taller than me now. We've not had the easiest year, DH was very ill an nearly died in the summer. Thankfully he's well now, DS has started secondary school which was always going to be very difficult and it has been. Up until recently, DS and I usually got on well, I felt I was on the same page as him but over the last few months, he's so rude to me. Serious attitude and really nasty. He called dd a fucker the other day, whereas a couple of months ago he really hated swearing. Obviously I had words with him, I usually confiscate he tablet but even that doesn't touch him anymore. He's self harmed - split his own lip, keeps reopening the wound and he's bitten his arms. I've reported this to the SENCO and taken him to our GP. CAHMS won't see him as they're overloaded!! Obviously, I realise he's had a lot to deal with and that his hormones are raging (which he hates) but I just don't know what to do now, I feel weary of it all. He doesn't listen to anything I say anymore, so I can't get through to him. And it's so overwhelming sometimes dd seems to get forgotten when she puts up with so much from ds. How do I start to get through this? I feel like I've failed him.
Didn't want to read and run, to you you're doing an amazing job. Hopefully someone will be along soon with more useful advice but until then, unmumsnetty hugs from me.
Golly, how very difficult. A couple of ideas: post on the SN and/or teenage areas of mn for support from understanding people. Pick your battles with ds. Otherwise you will drive yourself insane. Agree consistent boundaries with dh so there is no room for playing you off one another.
Try to make time for yourself and for you with dh and dd as well. You all deserve time. Practice mindfulness and meditation, they really can help.
And drink wine. This storm will pass. Best wishes.
Know from personal experience that CAMHS are pretty useless lately.Have they not even seen him?
How is his behaviour at school?
You haven't failed him but it does sound like it has been an overwhelming year for all of you.
Are you getting any time without DS? Is there any respite available in your area? What about adapted CBT? Does he sleep? Have you been in touch with your local NAS? Has it been this bad before and if it has, what worked then?
I have an NT 13 year old and his mood swings are bad enough. I agree with the pick your battles. One thing I've noticed is how emotionally vulnerable DS1 is.
Can you have a set of consistent rules and consequences e.g. if he starts swearing at you; you walk away or refuse to converse if you can't walk away.
Can you book out some Mum and Daughter time each week for your DD?
Be kind to yourself it's a tough time and you sound like you are coping remarkably well
I think you should start by reporting your post and asking to get the thread moved over to SN.
Is DH off over the holidays? If so, can you take some time out with DD to recharge your battery and hers? I don't know how old she us or what your financial situation is like - but it could be anything from going out for a hot chocolate & a chat, to going away for a night or two.
As for DS, I honestly don't know. It's a difficult enough stage/age without the HFA as well. I'm not sure anyone can give advice any better than you could give yourself if you just had the chance to get away from it for a bit. It's relentless.
I've been into school a few times. He's golden in school. They think I've lost the plot I'm sure. They don't recognise the behaviour I describe at all. They've told me I'm interferring and to back off. He won't go to bed at night, still awake way past midnight, won't get up in the morning, everything I speak to him about usually results in a mouthful of abuse back. DH does struggle with DS more so than I do. His obsessions are so strong and I feel it's holding him back but I can't do anything about that. I've posted in SN but I got very few replies!! I know there isn't a magic answer really. I feel like running away
I will probably get shot down but he's young lots of hugs and cuddles and if you can one on one time ie lunch (pizza etc) just the two of you and talk to him. Hopefully he will come out the otherside when he settles down.
He's actually very clingy with me. I'm so used to his outbursts now but I see other raise an eyebrow when he goes off on one. Dd is 8. She a really good girl, she has an inset day this week when DS is back at school, we're having a girls shopping day
One of my little sisters was like this,
She was sent to a boarding school and it really helped. I'm not sure if that would be an Option.
I don't really know what to say. But I want to send you a big hug.
no no OP you haven't lost the plot. He's absolutely holding it all together in school but clearly he can't when he gets home and he's unleashing in the safest place he can. At home with you.
I know from first hand experience how awful it is for you but remember its not all him. Some of it will just be him being a typical arsey 12yo the rest will be the ASD, the anxiety, the transitions, the changes and puberty.
He sounds like he desperately needs new coping strategies at school. But first you need to figure out what the stressers are.
Stupidly simple things like being allowed to leave a lesson 5 mins early to move to the next class so he can avoid the noise and stress of the corridors if thats the issue. H
having a quiet place to eat lunch out of the canteen. If needing down time is the issue.
brain breaks if continuous 60min lesson is too much. Some ASD kids can't focus for that long and need a 10 min breather task before going back.
It sounds like he is holding it together in school and falling apart when he gets home.
Can you see the GP about his sleep issues?
Is there anything that helps him distress in the evening? If so, could that be built into his routine?
If his behaviour is really bad can you video it so professionals can see the problem?
Well done for staying! I think teens look and sound old, but they can be as vulnerable and lost as toddlers inside. Got no great ideas for altering behaviours, but do know that there's a lot of transference in behaviours. His fear of your DH being ill and worries for how it will turn out for everyone, could lead to the acting out. It's common in a family that's had a big stress,like illness for the focus to be transferred to another member when the crisis is over. I also think that in these misogynistic times, the boys and men are given licence to be complete *****s and the girls are opting out.
Only thing I can suggest is compassion and gentle strictnesses and praise for anything for him(being nice, clearing up, helping, getting a good grade). Even if he's sarcastic to praise, keep it positive. Sneak him out for a burger on his own for one on one time and encourage DH to do the same. And compassion and kindnesses for yourself and DH. Hope his health continues well.
Any possibility of private art/ music/ drama therapy within your area? I guess the school don't provide it. It might be helpful if you found a well trained practitioner. Your DS sounds as if he needs some outside help. Very hard for you all. I'm sorry.
School have said that?? They should be offering you support & be grateful that you are a parent who actually cares for your child.
If your GP is supportive then I would be asking for a referral to see a paediatrician.
could you write him a letter.post it under his door. just write what you feeling.let him know your there.that your struggglin but are trying your best but might still be getting it wrong for him so how can you work it out together.
does he have any goals.something to work towards.
with the daughter make sure she knows shes important but also what really important is also not to give her the feeling that you think shes hard done by or forgotten. illness comes in families.it doesn't push other to the side but it just comes in waves through time. she needs to be able to understand that. because sometimes if they then grip to being forgotten or hrd done by and that you yourself think this she could grasp on to negative beahviours and thinkings herself. I'm not saying don't think sympathetically on her but it can cause more problems if you play on the fact that one child might be getting or needing more attention.this jut is the way thing happen in families. youll get through if you know this and so fight together for the balance.
could you watch a film together.or pick a film let him know your going and want him to come and then go anyway.
don't stress if he pulls and pushes in all directions. you've almost got to let it be to a point because getting stressed will cause you pain and then him pain and then more upset.this then leads to more pushing and pulling and so the circles continue.
keep trying.dont give up. you sound like your doing the best with a horrible situation.
can you run away for an afternoon. just go out and be with you. run and scream at the top of a hill or something
what if on day all the things you try you come up with a solution. don't give up there can be a happy medium.
and never forget your trying you best. if you love him.and you love them both then sometimes that's the only thing that will getyou through anyway.all the rest of the things might fail but love gives a strength nothing else ever will to come through
one night after a massive blow up my brother slammed his door. wouldn't allow mum in.she went away grabbed a book and some dorotos told him what she was doing and that she wasn't moving because she loved him. also that opening the door wasn't a win for either of them but both and shed be ready whenever. it was a game changer. it took twenty minutes my brother open the door and sat and nibbled a few crisps and stared at mum. she said she loved him and shall they go downstairs or could they talk. this time they just wen tdown and watched tv and the talking happened.
but it was huge.
Thanks for all your replies. I really appreciate you taking the time out for me. Yes, school really said that, his keyworker in an e mail to me, so that 'relationship' is now fractured to say the least. She told DS that I wa worrying too much and that my anxiety was making him worse. ASD is so overwhelming sometimes even when it's HFA.
I wish I had some answers, OP. My DS is 14 and going through exactly the same. Hormones raging, won't listen to a single word I say, in the last few months he's dislocated my wrist, given me a concussion and more bruises than I can count. CAMHs are pointless, we've spent 2 years on the waiting list already and are nowhere near getting an appointment, no overnight respite services. He gets direct payments which we pay for a career for a few hours a week but that's spent making sure my other DC have done homework/reading/had a little time to play without him around.
It's so hard, support is desperately lacking everywhere at the moment and families are really suffering.
its a very hard job. Try to have some strategies in mind that will keep things as calm as possible - like 5 mins fresh air, melatonin for sleep or a drowsy antihistamine to take the edge off ( DS, not you!) The cold shoulder can work with the swearing but if it's all ' cry for help' behaviour then try to get as much help as possible from social worker, NAS, support on line and any expertise you can find. Ask him to be patient while you try to help him. It's a long road - well done getting this far!
let you have your say then.if you worried about what being told to him make sure you sit with him and tell him. don't hide or lie.he'll no. tell him yes your anxious but its because you love and and so fear for him and getting it right.its not his fault and how can you come up with something to sort it together. remember also with hfa they can get anxietys over things more than others too so your probably bouncing off eachother.xx
I'd do anything for him and dd and whilst I said I felt like running, I never would actually do it. I know they need me. DS has been identified as being exceptionally talented at golf so he now has golf lessons but he's not bothered really, he's just into gaming. It's so frustrating as he's bright, I've tried loads with him - martial arts, hockey, running (he's sporty) he was player of the week in hockey two weeks running within the first month of going. He's just not arsed though. Thanks for your replies, I know there's no magic wand, I've just got to keep going
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