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To the mum whose son was having a meltdown today...

(12 Posts)
Galena Thu 28-Jul-11 13:47:50 the children's outpatients at Gloucester Royal Hospital.

You were doing a fab job - trying to talk to a doctor on the phone at the same time as trying to calm your son down, while varied hospital staff tried to 'help' and ended up hindering. I know everyone else was cats-bum-mouthing, as your DS was screaming, but the smile I tried to give you was certainly not a bragging 'My child isn't screaming' but an 'Oh boy, I think you just need a friendly face.'

I hope it came over like that.

To other mums/dads/carers of autistic children (I assume, possibly wrongly in which case I apologise, this lad was autistic and struggling to wait) what response would you appreciate in this situation? Do you want me to ignore and pretend nothing's going on? Friendly smile? Anything else?

Starchart Thu 28-Jul-11 15:13:06

LOL. Thanks for caring.

I'd want you to not comment or 'help' with the child but look at what I am trying to do and support it.

So, if I am trying to get my ds from A-B, moving any sticking out chairs, holding a door open or carrying a bag, or simply telling me that you'll watch a sibling for a minute will help me to deal with my child more effectively and quickly.

drivemecrazy63 Thu 28-Jul-11 15:39:36

thats how id feel starchart id want physical assistance but not questions or aww bless poor child or simular comments some people say or the whats wrong with him, or tuts and moans and stares just a door opened or offer of do you need anythings nice or as you say ill look after your other dc for a min while your being seen. maybe its best as i think id do it now is tell triage it would be a good idea to see ds asap as hes autistic and will meltdown if hes here hours and bored.... i take his ds & psp everywhere and often a couple action figures kept in the car for just such times.

BabeRuthless Thu 28-Jul-11 16:20:35

I think practical help is best as the other posters have said. I only have the one ds but when he was having meltdowns in the supermarket "aww, he's tired isn't he?" wasn't a lot of help whereas "do you want a hand with your packing?" would have been.

I try not to judge other people anymore than I'd want them to judge me. Sometimes people don't know how to react.

coff33pot Thu 28-Jul-11 16:28:04

Actions speak louder than words and the above suggestions of moving blockades of chairs, toys, trolleys etc is a good move.

Had a child stressed out in the docs surgery couple weeks back and just simply said if you want to take him out for a walk round the building I will shout you when your name is called that way mum didnt have the pressure of having to stay put.

rebl Thu 28-Jul-11 17:33:45

Definatly practical help. I had ds having a meltdown in the pharmacy today whilst picking up 2 months worth of his prescriptions. The lady just handed me this enormous bag (those really really big boots plastic bags) and I was like, wtf!! No one helped, no one opened the door for me and the place was full. They all just stood and stared whilst I tried to hold ds kicking, screaming and punching. The person who helped? My 5yo DD. She ended up dragging the bag of medicines to the door and then opening it and then holding it open for me to get ds out and then dragging the bag to the car where she got the car keys out of my handbag and opened the car. How hard would it have been for someone to have helped?

zen1 Thu 28-Jul-11 18:07:55

coff33pot, I would have given anything for someone like you at our GPs the other day. As soon as we walked in I noticed that the toys were not in their usual place which meant that when my DS3 went to look for something to play with and realised they were no longer there, he immediately started screaming. A receptionist walked past and informed me that they no longer have toys there due to infection risk. I then gave him a snack to distract him, but when that was finished, cue more screaming. I was surrounded by old people giving me disapproving looks and had to wait half an hr before being seen. When I finally saw the GP (appt was for DS1), DS3 started banging the GPs desk as he liked the sound and when the GP told him to "shush", he had another meltdown (he's only 2 and I don't think GPs ever read any of the correspondence he must have received about him). Was so stressed by the end of it.

signandsmile Thu 28-Jul-11 18:14:06

Galena I am sending you a grin, for me just having someone else who isn't frowning and tutting is lovely. my ds stropped and bit me at one point when having a visit to pre-school, (a while ago now!) and I could have hugged the mum who smiled and said 'its tough isn't it, can I help?' (turns out her older ds has ASD too)

Galena Thu 28-Jul-11 18:14:30

Thanks for the advice. Unfortunately today there was no practical help I could offer - she was simply trying to talk to a doctor and stop him screaming, neither of which I could help with. However, I will take it on board and offer practical help in the future if I can.

Galena Thu 28-Jul-11 18:15:16

(Stop her DS screaming, not the doctor!)

coff33pot Thu 28-Jul-11 19:20:57

zen1 What an awful time at the docs! for you and DS bless. I have to say with my DS I have kind of grown thick skinned to all the tutting and have been known in the middle of Tesco so sit right down with him and kick my legs in the air too saying at the top of my voice "I agree with you DS I hate being looked at too!" They soon bugger off and stop staring. I guess I have now developed into a mum with attitude grin

zen1 Thu 28-Jul-11 19:46:48

grin at the thought of sitting down and kicking legs in Tesco. I guess if I'd have done that at the GPs they would've come right out and sectioned me, (and cut down my waiting time by half!!). Still working on my 'mum with attitude' badge smile

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