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Please help, nothing is working and I need advice (10yo boy with AS)(18 Posts)
DS1's behaviour has been getting steadily worse over the past few months at home - tantrums, crying, shouting etc when asked to do quite simple things or challenged in any way. We have been calmly applying rules and consequences, explaining expectations etc and just about managing to contain him and still maintain our relationship with him, but it is increasingly difficult.
On Friday dh picked him up from afterschool club and was told by the leader that his behaviour had been so bad over the past two days that he was being issued with a formal warning (she has sent us a letter) and if he doesn't improve immediately he will be suspended. He is on two weeks probation. She had meant to mention it on Thursday but hadn't had time. She said the behaviour was tantrums, screaming/temper, snatching toys from younger children, refusing to allow other children onto areas of the floor he was playing on, refusing to follow instructions/tidy up etc. I recognise most of the behaviour (although he has never really been nasty to other children before so I am worried by this). She said on Thursday she actually had to leave the room
So we took it very seriously, sat him down immediately and talked to him about the potential consequences of being suspended and asked him to account for his behaviour, we were very cross indeed. He spent the weekend doing jobs around the house, writing letters of apology, ding his homework, and went to bed straight after dinner. I had several talks with him about taking responsibility and we discussed strategies for him to control his temper and handle situations differently (none of which is new to him/us). He went to bed last night feeling much better about the coming week and promising that he was going to make a real effort to use his strategies, stay calm and do as he was asked by adults at school and afterschool club.
So this morning dh asked him to change his duvet cover and he kicked off - screaming, refusing, deliberately doing it badly, loud affected crying etc. I gave him a real telling off and reminded him of the seriousness of the situation he is in and the promises he has made to himself and others - he needs to think before he acts and control his temper. He will go to bed early tonight without his story, because he screamed at dh and did not do as he was asked.
I am starting to shit myself. If he really cannot control himself then life is going to get very difficult very quickly, for all of us. I cannot be with him reminding him all the time. I HATE punishing and being at loggerheads all the time. I want my loving sweet little lad, I know he's in there somewhere but I ust don't understand why he is so angry and miserable . I don't think he is being bullied and I can't think of anything else that could be causing distress. I am going to call his teacher today and arrange to meet with her anyway though, just to make sure we are all banging the same drum and that there isn't anything else I don't know about.
ANY advice would be gratefully received (but please don't flame me)
How old's yours Hothead? Are you having similar issues?
Definitely no flaming here!
I think there could be any number of causes tbh. In my ds' case it came down to a mixture of factors. I don't know if any of these could be relevant to your ds:
- Expectations at school being ramped up. In Yr5/Yr6 it all seems to get a lot more serious, with impending SATs and an awareness that children will need to be helped to build up to cope with secondary school life. The gap between children with AS and those who are NT also widens considerably at this age.
- Dark nights/mornings seem to mess up sleeping patterns, and the resulting tiredness means that tolerance levels for everything just drop to virtually nothing.
- Age/hormones. I think there tends to be a hormone surge at this age, which increases the tendency towards bouts of rage and meltdowns.
I think the meeting with the teacher is a good first step. It may be that even if he is coping with the work, the stress of dealing with social/emotional/sensory issues might be taking a lot out of him. If so, it might be worth looking into increasing his support at school and asking for some help or intervention with the social side of things.
Does he have a quiet corner he can use at afterschool club, when other children are getting on his nerves? If not, it can make a big difference IME.
I am guessing that you are using the after school club while you are working.
If so you cant really take him out. It could be that he has had to be so "good" all day that he just needs to vent. Could a staff member take him outside for a 10 minute charge around.
I agree that he needs a safe space to play without others interferring.
We are also struggling with the step from yr 4 to yr 5.
But if school can meet his needs then afterschool club should be able to by putting some strategies into place. Ask them to speak to the senco at school or their own senco.
Keep coming on here for support
Green sleeves, I remember you from back when we had two quirky little three year olds
Ds1 now has a diagnosis of asd, and ADHD.
I hope I can offer you some advice.
Maybe your son really really needs downtime after school because school is very hard for him to cope with. He knows the rules, he sticks to the rules. He doesn't want people near him, but he puts up with it. He doesn't want to be in the noisy room, but he deals with it. His peers have learned that there are things he Does Not Tolerate, and as they are all nine, ten and eleven, and mostly nt, they will simply leave him be.
But then he's been coping all day, and he has to go to ANOTHER place that isn't home, with DIFFERENT people, who don't know him and are too young to understand when not to wind him up, and this place is noisier, not structured, and full of irritating little turds who won't play by the rules. And he's tired! He's been dealing with this sort of crap all day!
So a smaller child gets shoved out of his face and told, in no uncertain terms, to sod off. And then your son gets punished for being utterly at the end of his tether with all this disruption.
Could you not use a child minder? Could you find one who would have some understanding of his needs? Because the after school club is going to become less and less suitable.
I remember being told needy not naughty. The behavior is an attemptsubcnciously to tell you something isn't right. So maybe he,s over loaded from a/day at school, maybe the atmosphere is too stimulating, not structured enough, too noisy or something else. Maybe he has problems wih another child. My ds certainly finds in hard to express where his discomfort has come from. The other thing to look at is the consequence of his behavior. .Is he put in a quiet space. Does he kick off to be removed to the sanctuary. All subconscious
Sorry if this all seems like gobbledegok
No advice I'm afraid, but tons of sympathy (10y old son with Asperger's and ADHD).
poltergoose - if you don't mind me asking, where did you get the weighted snake and how much was it? I've seen them online, but they are always £25+. I'd be interested in trying this with DS2, however, not keen on spending £25+ on something we may end up not using at all.
We really struggle with DS2 lately as well. He just kicks off over the slightest thing (he's 6yo). I think we need to get some type of controls into place now regarding his anger or he will be uncontrollable when he is older.
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