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Friendly advice wanted please

(14 Posts)
DjDebbieD Mon 29-Oct-12 18:30:12

Hi, I have a 5 year old son who is Autistic and more recently been diagnosed with ADHD also. He doesn't talk. Recently he has started to scream and cry uncontrollably once the outside street lights come on, he sees this as wanting to go to bed. His regular bedtime is 6:30pm and soon became 6pm once this behaviour started. However, now the clocks have gone back an hour it now starts at 4:30pm, he won't eat dinner because he's too distressed that the lights are on and trust me he does not stop. I'm at a total loss of what to do and have plucked up the courage to ask for help.

coff33pot Mon 29-Oct-12 19:00:24

Dont know if it would work but black out curtains/screens maybe?

I know somewhere online I saw a clock that had faces that were asleep and then awake iyswim. I try and look online.

Maybe you can then distract via the clock and insist that the clock says its not bedtime yet. Be consistant with that and maybe just maybe he may get the routine of it smile

coff33pot Mon 29-Oct-12 19:04:08

There is one and there are a few different ones there. Thought you could use it as a night time alarm sort of thing x

coff33pot Mon 29-Oct-12 19:04:50

Try that blush

DjDebbieD Mon 29-Oct-12 19:13:17

Thanks for your reply and advice. Unfortunately he stands waiting for the street lights to come on and knows they are going to by the fact that its getting dark. Nothing seems to work and he is absolutely hysterical until we give in and put him up to bed. Blinds etc dont work as he lifts them up to look. I'm at my whits end because I can't see anything that may work. I've always been sceptical about forums etc but thought maybe someone on the outside could suggest something I hadn't thought of!
Many thanks :-)

DjDebbieD Mon 29-Oct-12 19:14:18

I may still get one of those anyway as they look good!

coff33pot Mon 29-Oct-12 19:20:01

You need to be sceptical we are a funny lot ere grin

Welcome btw smile

Ok how about introducing him to a timetable? Bedtime routine one. Laminate some pictures/photos. Do two one for Summer one for Winter.

Ask him if the lights have come on and put the picture of a lamplight up.

Next picture of DS having a bath while mum cooks tea (get it ready beforehand and keep warm smile

Next would be jim jams on then sit down to table for tea.

Meanwhile put clock by the side.

Next is story and bed and alarm goes off

Might be a able to drag it out till 6 that way?

DjDebbieD Mon 29-Oct-12 19:28:20

Thank you for the welcome!
Your plan sounds like a good one, it's all about trying to get him to understand, definitely worth a shot tho so thanks!!!

Ineedalife Mon 29-Oct-12 19:30:26

Hi DJ and welcome to the board.

I just wondered if it would help or be possible to give him his main meal in the middle of the day and just a sandwich at teatime while you try to sort this out. At least then you wont be worrying that he hasnt had a decent meal (if he will eat one).

When he goes to be does he want to go to sleep or would he play or watch a.dvd for a while.

I know its not ideal but if he could cope with being in his room in his pyjamas that might gradually lead to staying downstairs in his pyjamas.

This could take a while. Be kind to yoursrlf and keep coming on here if you need to vent.

Good lucksmile

DjDebbieD Mon 29-Oct-12 19:37:31

Hi ineedalife and thank you for your advice.
When he goes upstairs to bed he usually plays about by himself for a bit and then goes off to sleep but to be honest we've been putting up with the screaming so that he don't go up before 6pm. Your suggestions sound very good and ill try them out, see what happens if I do put him straight up when he wants!
Thanks very much :-)

GhostofMammaTJ Mon 29-Oct-12 19:39:27

I used to look after a lady with severe learning difficulties and schizophrenia and non communication. She used to want to dash off as soon as she had had breakfast to her 'job'. She would get very distressed, as she would at other times of the day when she could not move on quickly enough to the next part. We did a chart with pictures of activities and clocks next to them and she calmed considerably.

I think it could work very well, if it did for her, it could for anyone.

mymatemax Mon 29-Oct-12 20:02:32

Was going to suggest the same, visual timetable including the lights.

Also could it be because he cant see the cause and effect... who is switching on those light, could be scary?

Very simple visual explanation/social story

DjDebbieD Mon 29-Oct-12 20:03:07

Thank you very much for that, gives me hope! Work on a chart will commence in the morning! :-)

DjDebbieD Mon 29-Oct-12 20:04:48

Mymatemax thanks for your reply. We have tried explaining to him but unfortunately he don't seem to understand.
The visual chart seems to be the way forward!
Thank you

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