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I kicked her(62 Posts)
Today I kicked DD2.
I'd had an awful morning - DD1 had got herself stuck down the side of DD2/3's bunk bed at chest height, with just one toe on the windowsill. DD3 had dissolved into tears because DD2 got dressed before her so was the 'winner'. DD1 got a shock from getting stuck and was a complete mess so we were running late.
It was 8.20 and DD1's bus comes at 8.20 then we need to hot-foot it to the school. DD2 had, as usual, completely blanked what she needs to do to be ready for school, and was sat on the sofa using the IPad. I asked her to ready herself. She ignored me.
I had my hands full of lunch boxes, book bags, etc., and I used my free hand to take the IPad from her - by this point she'd had 3 requests to turn it off, all acknowledged by ignored. Instead of letting me remove it, she started to tussle with it. It was precariously close to flipping in the air.
I raised my foot off the ground and kicked her just above the ankle I can't believe I did it. I don't think it physically hurt her (she didn't show any signs of it and I would say it was a 'tap' if that didn't seem to be trying to minimise it - I'm not minimising it, but an accidental kick would be much harder than the kick I did...if that makes sense).
I apologised straight away. I told her I'd lost my control and I shouldn't have done it.
Anyway. Roll on tonight and she says that she had to do her 'feeling chart' at Dragonflies this afternoon - they draw in a 'blob' - and she drew a broken leg and a broken arm in hers, because Mummy kicked her on purpose. She said that the others had to raise their hands if they'd ever had that and she told me that I should have 'had a breath'.
She told me that she didn't tell them why, or what happened, or anything else. Then, she pointed to her knee, where just below there is a bruise (browny colour, not new) and said 'that's the bruise!'. So goodness knows what school thinks of me now.
Oh lord what a foul start to the day. And how many of those have I had? Including more times than I care to admit when I have got physical with D2 and then beaten myself up over it.
Be kind to yourself. You are bloody brilliant.
So plan what you will do differently next time.
I'm not being smug, my DD still remembers the time I cleared her desk in an incandescent fury at stalling arguement number 193 that evening as to why she couldn't do her homework. I put my forearm on the LHS and swept everything, fragile or not into a heap on the RHS floor. She lost part of a set of ornaments that she still remembers 10 years later.
I've also thrown items out of DS's window.
You lost your temper, you apologised, and she's working through how she feels about it, with my DD she bears a grudge into the next life. So she used the familiar routines and phrases that comforted her to frame her understanding. It will take a while.
It is hard, I used to regard every birthday mine made as a personal triumph for my self control.
Oh lougle, come on eh.
You had a moment of weakness you acknowledged. Move on and up.
And don't be too hard on yourself, what a clever dd you have to say " you should have taken a breath".
You know you should have, you've apologised so don't let it hang over your weekend.
It's done, tomorrow's a brand new day.
Today was the day the routine was wrong, Polter.
Normally I get DD3 dressed first, because she can be tempermental, being just 4. If she can get dressed in the calm, before the others start mucking around, she's happy. Once she's dressed, I call the other two and encourage DD2 to dress while DD1 is encouraged/assisted as necessary.
Today though, DD2 decided to get dressed earlier than normal, which tipped DD3 over the edge. DD1 then had time to get stuck, etc.
Dont beat yourself up lougle we are human you know, we are all pretty amazing, including you but we dont get it right all the time.
I was going to suggest the visual timeline for mornings too. Starting one with Dd3 was life changing for us, yes I know that sounds dramatic but it really was.
Dd3 went from being totally dependent on me for every single instruction for every step and every instruction could be met with "No" or "In a minute " or worse "stop telling me what to do!!"
With the timeline she was able to be independent for the first time ever.
Be kind to yourself
Oh Lougle, you tapped her with your foot, while your hands were full!
Poor you Louglechalk it up and move on, but not before one or these
Oh Lougle, I don't know what to say? That you're a terrible terrible mother?
I know you are not.
But I know something else too. You are coping with an awful lot of stress and worry and right now, guilt at not being perfect in a testing situation will not help.
It might have been your fault that you kicked her, it was wrong, and I am not excusing it, but you were limited in your tools to prevent an escalation of chaos that would become difficult for all of your children.
And as you say, you didn't actually hurt her, you were just trying to engineer what needed to happen in the most efficient way to prevent further distress to your family. That was the overall motivation.
What you need to do now is make a plan for if ever that situation arises again and also think through what would have happened in the worst case of everyone being late, so that you are unafraid/unstressed by that situation if it ever presents itself as a choice again.
TBH I think you would be less bothered by it had you not subsequently learned that your DD had been telling the whole of school about it.
Could it be described as a 'nudge'?
Cat in the Hat was DD's favourite book when she was small, and one image always remains for me.
"Look at me!
Look at me!
Look at me NOW!
It is fun to have fun
But you have to know how.
I can hold up the cup
And the milk and the cake!
I can hold up these books!
And the fish on a rake!
I can hold the toy ship
And a little toy man!
And look! With my tail
I can hold a red fan!
I can fan with the fan
As I hop on the ball!
But that is not all.
That is not all...."
That is what the cat said...
Then he fell on his head!
He came down with a bump
From up there on the ball.
And Sally and I,
We saw ALL the things fall!'
Sometimes you just can't balance everything at the same time, however hard you try.
So you pick yourself up, fix what you can and move on.
lougle the defining factor here, IMO, is that you realised right away that it was wrong, you spoke to her about it, and you changed your approach. Recognising it, admitting it, and changing it. I'd be willing to bet you're furiously thinking of other strategies (and discarding them and thinking of more...) that you can use the next time this happens.
You are, aren't you?
Because you made a mistake, you learned from it, now you're changing your approach. That's what good parents do.
This is miles different from STBX that hit DS2, lied about it repeatedly, then verbally attacked me when I confronted him with the evidence and insisted it was DS2's fault as he wouldn't listen. When I told him it was unacceptable behaviour (he didn't even apologise or ask if he was okay), he said I was overreacting and "I hit him, so what?"(which is why he is now STBX, among other things)
Huge huge difference.
Lougle your doing amazingly I have a screaming fit every morning when dd 2 refuses every item I try to dress her in and ds is still sitting in his pants like you I have to be at a school bus pick up point at 7.55 . My eldest is fifteen so she deals with herself so your doing amazingly
Thank you all. You're very kind.
Star I wouldn't call it a nudge, I kicked her 'gently' but definitely kicked and it wasn't a kind 'ooh come on darling lets get things moving.' It was a 'oh my goodness if you don't let go the IPad will break and I can't afford to fix it.'
The usual routine is:
DD3 dressed (DD2 occupying self; DD1 watching tv/IPad/colouring)
DD2 & DD1 called to get dressed (DD3 free to occupy self)
DD1 assisted, DD2 encouraged
DDs 1, 2 & 3 sit at table to have breakfast
While DDs have breakfast:
-get lunchboxes ready
-get book bags/coats ready
-get DD1's school bag/contact book, etc.
-take lunch boxes, book bags, etc., to car.
Bus comes - all take DD1 down to bus (DD2/3's choice, not necessary)
I shut door of bus
DD2& DD3 get straight in car
I go back to house and lock the door, quick sweep for any forgotten gear.
Leave house for school.
Lougle, we're all just floundering along anyway, and the fact that routines and being proactive smooths the path a little doesn't take away the sheer exhaustion of having to keep it up, hour after hour after day.
You have a routine, it went wonky and the resulting mess meant that you didn't cope well for a moment. A nanosecond.
But you are back to managing again, and next time you will be aware.
Try throwing something inanimate, or swearing in Russian, or having a breathe.
I know, you're right and I'm sorry for going on. The thing is, normally I take the IPad and that's what DD2 needs to realise that I meant her and I meant now and I didn't mean 'do what you want to do'.
SO I had no expectation that she would cling for dear life - or I would have done things differently.
Star is right, it's the fact that she's told the school with no inkling that there was another side to the story, and of course it makes me look like I'm thumping my kid, when nothing could (normally) be further from the truth.
Added to that the fact that they think she's 'fine' and she's so flipping not fine that I could scream with frustration at the injustice of it.
You can go on as much as you like, just realise that it's no use beating yourself up over a slip.
What's your relationship like with the school?
How well do they know your DD and is she like my two, who used to have a very specific slant on events and often saw themselves as victims? So I always knew that there would be a different opinion out there, and I didn't have all the facts.
And yes, we can tell an old bruise from a new one.
Relationship with school is superficially fine. Probably fine, tbh. Even good. I am never complacent though. I speak with the teacher and she knows that DD2 has reinterpreted her words on many an occasion. I have a good relationship with DD3's teacher/TA. I help at the school each week.
At the end of the day, she can say what she wants and it's the truth as she sees it.
So, an alien comes down from Mars to do a bit of agency social work.
Gets a call from a mum of 3 kids. Admits morning chaos, iPad imminent breakage crisis. One inappropriate physical contact. Mum admits, good insight, puts sensible recurrence-prevention bits in place. No other issues.
Alien vows only to take shifts on Earth in future, where families with SN form online communities to calm such 'good-enough' parents down and help them realise that a few parenting fails are not the end of the planet.
And some of the teachers might have similar experiences.
Number of times I've had to superglue my gameface on before work, thousands.
Lougle, I find it difficult enough to do one girl's hair before school - let alone three! Mornings are hard going, and none of us are perfect. Hope you get a good night's rest
I'm not sure I routinely remember to do dd's hair tbh.
Are you asking to much of yourself? Can you put bowls cereal where they can help themselves?
Can they put their own book bags in place on the way to bed.
I've given up supervising Ds getting dressed. He goes as he is. T-shirt back to front, both legs in one leg-hole of pants. I ask him to check and look in the mirror. If he says he's fine then he's fine.
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