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Help! DD behaviour going out of control! Tips? Techniques?ABA?(7 Posts)
I'm quite new to this site.
I posted this thread on SN chat as I wasn't sure if it was this thread, or there that receive more posts. But --
I have a 5 year old DD who has severe verbal dyspraxia and has a speech and language disorder ( Understanding and speech is of a three year old).
Her behaviour is getting out of control. She insists on doing everything her way, and if this does not go in her way, I will expect a huge meltdown.
A few years back, many professionals have commented that she is very self directed, I've never really understood what this meant and it didn't effect our daily life. So I (regrettably) shoved this off. But now I can fully understand what they mean!
As an example, we went to a playgroup thing the other day. I told DD "let's do some painting", she refused, no coaxing or persuasion would change her mind. She wanted to go home, no if's no buts! If I refuse, she will run away! hit herself and have massive tantrum.
But yesterday was when I saw it in action. I wanted to get her foot measured, we did eventually measure it, but previously, she was not allowing the foot customer guy to measure her foot, she was crying, wailing, making weird noises. She was bored! and wanted to go outside. I then told her " I would take her to Nandos ( her favourite) if she would be quiet". She immediately kept quiet and allowed the customer service man to measure her foot.
This was a Big Mistake.
As soon as we left the shop and walked past the Nandos. Her rage began. She was screaming, hitting herself, lying down on the floor, biting me. When we got on the train, she was worse, she banged on the windows, wailing, screaming, dropped on the floor in front of the passengers.
I'm crying as I type this.
I don't know what happened to her! She wasn't like this before the summer. It seems like she has regressed. The hitting herself, just came out nowhere and she does it when she's frustrated.
How can I teach her to not always follow her own agenda and do what I say!
How can I help her to stop hitting herself.
Everyday I worry about DD's future, would this behaviour continue, will she gain more functional words. I'm just at lost sad
I think first of all you should give yourself permission to feel shit about this. I have had many occasions of sobbing because of the behaviour of my kids and tbh I think you would have to be some kind of Saint to take this behaviour without feeling awful. Then maybe start thinking about using strategies that might reduce risk of meltdown. I know your dd doesn't have Asd diagnosis but you might find some of techniques used with children with Asd helpful. Things like first then boards, timers to show how long activities will go on for, picture symbols of where you are going and in what order etc. also make sure you can deliver the stuff you have promised. Tbh if I had promised my dd something in exchange for good behaviour during a chore then she would expect it to happen. Yes her behaviour was OTT but this is typical of children with poor language and understanding. I often do use bribes to get through difficult stuff but you must be able to deliver your side of the deal!
Did you never have any intention of taking her to Nandos? My NT 5yo would find it very difficult to cope with being promised something he really wanted and then finding out it was not for real.
I agree some structure could help your DD. A symbol board with 'wait' 'foot measure' and 'nandos' might have helped get you through the shoe shop scenario, maybe plus a tub of fiddle toys etc for the wait. Preparation for doing something you know is going to be tricky is really useful. Won't get you through everything, but might cut down the number of 'incidents' you have.
NEVER promise something you have no intention of delivering - I really don't blame her.
If she has limited language, all her frustration etc. will be being communicated through behaviour.
My DC have all at times had an issue in a shoe shop. DS bursting into tears because he didn't like the shoes they were trying to sell me - we walked out and went somewhere else. The youngest one not agreeing to get her feet measured, except with warning and in our local Clarks (the one with discounted shoes is a definite no no).
I recently had to warn someone who needed to talk to my youngest, that I couldn't guarantee her co-operation, it depended on how she felt and if she liked the look of you (she didn't like the Violin teacher with a beard).
What support is she getting? Is she seeing a SALT? How regularly? What support does she get in school?
Be kind to yourself. Give yourself more time if she insists on getting herself ready to go out. Talk to her lots about what is happening and will happen next, even if you are not sure she understands. Use visual timetables, make them with her. Do you have Makatan to communicate with her?
Thanks everyone for the comments.
I didn't have any intention to take DD to Nandos. I suspect the reason why she was like this was because she was very hungry.
I just found out that when I picked up DD from her aunty's house, to take her to get her foot measured, when I spoke to the aunty on the phone about the incident with DD. She was suddenly over apologetic and began to tell me that DD refused to eat anything whilst she was at her house and ate an apple instead ( which DD loves to eat).
DD was acting gritty and unstable before we got into the shops. But was distracted by the toys ( they sell a collection of toys at this shoe shop), she felt a bit better when she was playing with the toys, but was acting up a bit, not waiting for the shoe guy, that's when I promised her that I will take her to Nandos. We were still waiting for the shoe guy and she was acting up again, saying "bye bye" to me, which meant she wanted to leave. Finally shoe guy came, she refused to allow him to put shoes on and vice versa...
That could be the reason. I'm definitely going to the behaviour diary that Polter Goose suggested. I do feel terribly now, now since his aunty mentioned that to me.
She now goes to a speech and language school.
Lack of food certainly doesn't help.
But you might also want to look further back - why did she refuse to eat? Was she already stressed?
I saw a brilliant video about Autistic meltdowns on youtube once, which explained how the melt down at 3 pm could have a whole trail of causes which could lead back to 9 am or even earlier. ASD is of course also (in part) a communication difficulty.