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Son who is 'different' - I'm feeling down and lonely ;(

(24 Posts)
MummaBubba123 Fri 17-May-13 23:33:43

I'm sure that there are lots of other mummies / daddies feeling sad and lonely because their child is seen to be behaving in an unacceptable way.
But I don't want to talk to parents in his class about it (scratched and hit this week) as I don't want him to be labelled and alienated.
I've seen it happen to other children who misbehave.
He is only 5 1/2 but his behaviour is a little more than immature. He seems unable and unwilling to follow another's lead -be it a peer or a teacher.
Head in hands hmm

Meringue33 Sat 18-May-13 08:25:03

So sorry to hear this. I don't have any experience of this age but bumping for you til someone better comes along.

MummaBubba123 Sat 18-May-13 23:15:12

Thank you ;)
Perhaps I've posted in the wrong section - or maybe I really AM alone in this!

mymatemax Sat 18-May-13 23:21:37

it is horrible when your child is the one doing the hitting & scratching. Is it just a phase or do you think there is a more complex behaviour problem going on?

In any case all children are different and all parents at some time compare & worry about the things their child is not so good at but dont forget to see the things your ds is good at or the lovely side to his personality.
i have a (sometimes stroppy) teenager & a younger child who is disabled it is very easy to get dragged in to seeing the negatives especiallyb when you think other parents are judging.
It is of course essential to sort the bad behaviour but dont forget to enjoy the good bits too.

defineme Sat 18-May-13 23:22:59

No you're not alone.
There could be any number of reasons for this behaviour.
Do you suspect special needs-if so post on special needs board.
Are there issues outside school-ie at home?
What do the teachers say?
Could it be issues with the school? Is it particular children he has issues with?

My ds's best friend used to hit/scratch and strangle, but the school dealt with it and I told my ds to be kind because it was common knowledge his gran had died and his parents were divorcing.

Another child spat and hit too-again I told dc to be kind because he had a dx of autism.

I would talk to other people-you need the support-talk to friends/gp/teachers/anyone you can think of.

dietstartstmoz Sat 18-May-13 23:34:26

Have you spoken to the school? Does the teacher have any concerns about his behavior or social skills? If you have concerns post on the sn boards. My son has autism and is very different in his mainstream school.

MummaBubba123 Sun 19-May-13 09:01:18

Yes, I do suspect special needs - but because he has excellent eye contact, communication skills, etc. it's difficult to pinpoint and the GP and local children's peace centre have refused to help as it's not bad enough!
I'm just mortified as, although rather controlling, he had never been aggressive before- ever. He is 5 and a half. Thank you for your helpful messages and tips - I will post on the SN board.

Dilidali Sun 19-May-13 09:27:57

Before going and labelling a child, could it be that it is just too much for him at the moment? You say he hasn't acted that way before. They are little people, even grown ups lose the plot from time to time.
I haven't been in your shoes (yet) but what I did notice is that at some point in their school terms they just become really really tired. Mine's been going to school for 4 years now and every single year, just before the summer half term she gets really tired. This coincides with massive growth spurts, tests etc, she just has a meltdown. It's like her head can't cope with stuff anymore. She hasn 't been physical about it, she's a kid that overthinks stuff. So she will retreat in her room/head and have very little tolerance towards anything. We learnt to give her space.
Maybe your little boy is just tired. If I may suggest, try having a very chill half term. Don't cram activities, just give him time and attention and be very chilled and patient and try to talk about his scratching and hitting.
We 'discovered' pets recently and whenever she needs head space she goes and talks and strokes and cuddles the guinea pigs. It is working for us.

HotheadPaisan Sun 19-May-13 09:34:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

aladdinsane Sun 19-May-13 09:45:51

I would get a meeting with school for starters and see how they can support him
Is there a trigger and can they put strategies in place
My DD can't cope with endings so she goes with a TA to do some jobs just before the end of play time
You can also discuss his development with school, is this a blip or something deeper
Both my DC have SN and one can harm other children. It is so isolating and upsetting - I really feel for you. You start to think all other parents 'know' and are talking about your DC. This is probably not the case. My dc school is very inclusive and supportive which makes all the difference
If it is SN you can still be happy. Our lives are far from 'normal' in the traditional sense but we have found our own normal and are happy
Its different from our friends though, I could never sit chatting while dc play happily together

MummaBubba123 Sun 19-May-13 13:29:30

Aladdinsane, that's exactly how I feel ;)
So lonely and prone to feeling paranoid and excluded. I so want him to have friends- and so does he. However, no end of explanations, consequences, rewards, etc seem to have effect at school

Kleinzeit Sun 19-May-13 14:19:47

Not much advice, just sympathy and to let you know you’re not the only one! One thing to hold on to is that the aggression should make the professionals take your son’s difficulties more seriously. You could go back to the GP, explain that what’s been happening at school, and ask for some proper investigation.

If your DS is “different” then it may well take him longer to make friends and find a social life but he’ll get there in the end. It'll be easier to help him once you know for sure what his real issues are.

aladdinsane Sun 19-May-13 15:56:02

My life saver book is 'unconditional parenting' by Alfie Kohn
I often re read it - it reminds me to accept and love my DC just as they are and not for the life I thought we would have
Rewards and consequences do not work for my DC either, they just can't control how they act and not getting the reward reminds them of that

MummaBubba123 Sun 19-May-13 19:16:17

Thank you, Kleinzeit - good to know I'm not alone. Makes ME feel better.
Iwillgo back to the doc as I agree that may make them sit up and listen. We will see!
I'm onto amazon now for that book!

piprabbit Sun 19-May-13 19:31:48

Hi, I'm sorry that you and your DS are having a tough time, you've had some really helpful advice here and I hope it helps although I know it can take a while to get support sorted out.

In the meantime, I'd recommend going back to basics and checking his routine. It might not make much difference to his behaviour, but it might be worth a try. In particular, make sure he is getting loads of sleep - aim for 12 hours a night ideally. Is he in Reception class, that first year is very long and tiring. My DS is a lovely lad with a tendency towards stubbornness and he struggles to compromise and deal with transitions (from place to place or from task to task) and when things don't happen exactly as he expects. He is gradually getting better as he grows older, but I find that tiredness and getting out of synch with his meals/snacks (so getting beyond eating) can make the difference between him being able to contain himself and him losing control. He doesn't act tired, just gets more and more over-excited/over-stimulated until we have a big explosion. Luckily, it tends to be me that gets walloped and I can deal with that and punish him appropriately, it's much harder when it happens in school.

MummaBubba123 Sun 19-May-13 20:20:53

I haven't noticed any change in routine EXCEPT that last Monday, all children were moved around (different chairs and tables in classroom). I'd like to think that this unsettled him and that it'll calm down.
I'm forever faced with a 'situation' (teacher complaints) and then a period of calm - I therefore go from choosing the expert to take him to, to sticking my head firmly back underground.
My current quandary is whether to use private insurance to get him assessed as then it'll go through GP records and be on his medical records. A friend warned me against that. Not sure what to do wink

MummaBubba123 Sun 19-May-13 20:22:53

And I'd love to think he will grow out of it but who knows! He is desperate to make friends but us too soft - unless someone wants to do something other than what he wants to do ;(
It's v controlling behaviour but executed very nicely. Aggression has, so far, only been 3 times and all this week ;(

aniseed Sun 19-May-13 20:33:08

I have been in your exact shoes. My son has always been 'difficult' but we didn't realise how bad until he went to school. The year R teacher quickly idenitified SEN. We then spent the next few years being sent from pillar to post trying to get a diagnosis. He is coming to the end of year two now and we are edging closer to a diagnosis of ASD but are yet on another waiting list. It is a very frustrating time and has taken over our lives somewhat.
1. I would go back to the GP - you have to be very pushy in this financial climate - if you suspect there is a SEN then there probably is. People will tell you that he is fine but you know him the best.
2. Do your own research online and read everything you can get your hands on; particularly parent forums; knowledge is power.
3. Keep talking to the teacher and identify possible triggers. Keeping a diary may help as well.
4. While all this is going on, keep loving your child and raising his confidence.
5. Use books, social stories etc to help him to understand the impact of his behaviour on the other children.
6. Ignore other playground parents who may want to give your child a label. They are not important.
It may just be a stage but I believe that all behaviour is communication.

aniseed Sun 19-May-13 20:35:26

Oh and number 6: Keep strong as a family. You sound like a lovely mummy and I'm sure you are doing your best. This is not your fault.

DeafLeopard Sun 19-May-13 20:37:07

OP if you suspect any SN I would strongly suggest you post on the SN board. There are lots of very supportive and knowledgeable posters on there.

Kleinzeit Sun 19-May-13 20:40:26

You want it on his records! It will be on his records whether you go through the NHS or private. The downside of doing it privately is that the education people don’t always accept private diagnoses, because different experts apply different standards and the education people like to work with their familiar local experts who use the same criteria that they know and understand. I would go back to the GP and ask for an NHS referral first; if they refuse or are impossibly slow then ask about going private.

Did the peace centre evaluate your DS and then refuse to help because he’s not bad enough, or is it more that they would expect him to be evaluated first by someone else who would then refer him if appropriate? That’s the way most services work but it took me a long time to figure that out smile

MummaBubba123 Mon 20-May-13 22:06:41

'It's not your fault' almost made me cry!
Thank you- I'm learning that through my second child who is so v different to her lovely brother. She follows instructions for a start - she's only 2, though so let's see! Lol
The Peace Centre had a looooong chat with me on the phone having been told by my doctor to contact them. In the end, they just said his behaviour didn't warrant their support/ intervention, muttered about budgets and apologised, wishing me well (and hoping I'd stop crying!).

I will go back to the doctor. Today, he was a good boy at school. No aggression, "no major incidents" said his teacher. Putting head firmly back in sand.
I will try to post under SEN topic. Head will have to pop out of sand for that smile

Anomaly Tue 21-May-13 10:42:32

School needs to do more. Ds1 had issues in reception. The school did work with him and other children on social skills. The teachers got very good at rewarding positive behaviour. He's now year 1 and much more able to cope with school. It took pressure on our part for the school to do anything though.

So I would organise a meeting with school to discuss the strategies they will use to support him. They are the professionals and his behaviour does not sound very extreme for a child that age and they should be managing his behaviour.

schobe Tue 21-May-13 10:48:10

Use the private insurance if you have it. That's what it's there for.

Sadly your GP might well fob you off again when you go back. Or at best refer you to some service who will put you on a waiting list for 12 months then tell you the same as the 'peace centre'. What is that btw - whereabouts are you?

My son has severe SN. While I would give my own life for his needs to be less severe, I can wholly sympathise with parents of children who are just 'not bad enough' to get proper attention, assessment, support etc. It can be a massive battle and you need to get your battle armour on, starting with a skin as thick as a rhino.

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