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Ds isn't coping, I'm not coping. Any tips to get through the next few weeks?

(40 Posts)
PhilPhilConnors Tue 08-Dec-15 10:37:29

Ds (ASD/PDA) is still holding it all together in school, but at home is going through meltdown after meltdown with anger in between.
Every night is spent making my other dc stay out of his way as he can't tolerate them.

Last night he stayed on at school (out of choice) for a Christmas film night. He then spent the journey home singing/screaming Christmas songs out of the car window with very rude words. I ignored this (mostly because I couldn't physically stop him, and he wasn't being dangerous and interfering with driving)
At home this immediately turned into a trashing-the-house meltdown, punching, biting, etc.
This lasted for ages and was followed predictably by him sobbing and begging me to kill him.

School are not putting any strategies in place (suggest they don't need to as they can't see any behaviour), which I think I'm going to have to ignore for now without backup from somewhere.

We're trying to make sure he has a snack as soon as he gets in the car, then quiet time at home so he can wind down, but I think I'm missing a trick here, as he's melting as soon as he gets in the car.
Any tips how to deal with it?

Thank you cakebrew

bbkl Tue 08-Dec-15 17:40:14

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PhilPhilConnors Tue 08-Dec-15 17:47:20

We tried that, he wants to get in the car as quickly as possible to get everything out as soon as he can.
We do that when things are calmer, but it's not working right now, but thank you!

PolterGoose Tue 08-Dec-15 18:00:16

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PhilPhilConnors Tue 08-Dec-15 18:11:01

I'll try that Polter, thanks. He'll like the bug puzzle.

We've decided to keep him off tomorrow. He came out today, held it together until he got in the car then sobbed all the way home. He's really not coping with all the Christmassy stuff and is being told off for sensory seeking behaviour.
He has a CAMHS appointment on Friday. He said (through his sobs) that he's going to tell the lady there exactly how he feels, so they can make things better. I hope they can. Some support to get school listening would be good hmm.

PolterGoose Tue 08-Dec-15 18:44:23

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bbkl Tue 08-Dec-15 18:44:53

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PhilPhilConnors Tue 08-Dec-15 18:59:33

I remember you posting about that SALT assessment.
I'll try to ring her tomorrow or leave a message to make sure this is acted on. I hope he does tell her how he's feeling!
Thanks bbkl, it's so ingrained to feel wrong about keeping dc off school unless they're ill, but he is on a massive decline at the moment.

My plan tomorrow is to ring the dr to explain why I've kept him off (he's regularly saying he wants to die, so hopefully they'll understand that his mood is particularly low at the moment and keeping him in school regardless will be counterproductive), then write an email explaining why he's off, that the gp knows, and that the bloody useless gits are letting him down by not supporting him even a tiny bit! (I won't write it like that grin)

PolterGoose Tue 08-Dec-15 19:05:01

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PhilPhilConnors Tue 08-Dec-15 19:18:04

Polter, I've explained to him how it looks - me saying he's not going on xyz trip, them quizzing ds and him smiling and telling them how much he's looking forward to it then coming home and having a meltdown about it.
I have to be quite careful how I word things or he thinks I'm telling him it's ok to go in and punch people grin
I have said that if he feels that bad, maybe he'd feel a bit better if he showed someone that he was feeling bad.

PolterGoose Tue 08-Dec-15 19:21:49

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Youarentkiddingme Tue 08-Dec-15 20:27:17

polter I have exactly the same conversations with ds about telling people also ok when I've just argued with them it's not makes me look like a liar and a twit!

Phil keeping him home sounds good and I really hope for him and you and the rest of family he feels able to tell Camhs what the problem is and ask for help. How marvellous he is advocating for himself what he needs. (I'm sure you need to hear all the positives right now!).
I also use to have to go with distraction before destruction with da as getting the car seemed to be a trigger. What usually helped was me saying something like "oh I can't wait to get home and have a drink, I fancy a cold lemonade and maybe some chocolate, and I think I'll have a play on the iPad too" (all things that he would love to do and calmed him and he'd only have to use a few words like "me too". I'd then get him into talking about what he do on iPad and allow him to monologue as that calmed him somewhat.
It took a lot of careful input from the ELSA at school to break the cycle of him holding it in and getting him to release each little bit of stress throughout the day rather than holding it in and exploding.
School did things like running up and down the stairs or delivering messages, carrying boxes for teachers etc, helping move PE equipment. Although he doesn't see or have a sensory diagnoses we worked out sensory stuff worked for him and incorporated it.

bbkl Tue 08-Dec-15 20:48:42

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PhilPhilConnors Tue 08-Dec-15 20:57:45

I'm a little worried that this will trigger some school refusing, but the way he is at the moment I don't feel there's an option.
If he does ramp up school refusing, presumably school will have to help then? Or am I being naïve?

bbkl Wed 09-Dec-15 00:09:28

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PhilPhilConnors Wed 09-Dec-15 00:11:10

Good idea. Ds may be looking a bit off colour and running a slight temperature tomorrow!

PhilPhilConnors Wed 09-Dec-15 17:17:49

He's had the day off, has been angry all day (keeps chuntering about the teacher) but has been in control of everything today so did seem to relax a bit until we had to go and pick up ds3, when ds started to get more angry and threatening.
I spoke to the CAMHS lady who is going to try to ring school before ds's appointment on Friday.
I spoke to the gp who agreed that keeping him off sounded like the best plan and said I could say from him that he will authorise this from a medical point of view and will write a letter saying so if necessary.
I've emailed the HT and haven't had a reply. Again.
I'm either sending these to the wrong email address (which I will check tomorrow) or she is rude, or is still believing that we are making things up. Despite his diagnosis. And it being accepted by the cdc.
Ds's teacher is lovely, but rather than doing anything to help just looks sympathetic and says something like "I do feel for you, he's wonderful here" which on the one hand is a relief that they don't get sworn and spat at or punched, but on the other hand it's not bloody good enough! He has needs and they're completely ignoring them.

PolterGoose Wed 09-Dec-15 17:56:27

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PhilPhilConnors Wed 09-Dec-15 18:11:32

We're taking it a day at a time. He wants to be in the school play next week, so needs to be in ideally, but tbh at this point, if he needs to be home I'm happy for his term to end now - at least the GP is happy to back me up on this!

When I spoke to the CAMHS lady she seemed a bit taken aback that I asked for action so that ds can see it pays to be open with people, so I won't hold my breath, but if nothing else, I'm listening to him and will keep him off if he's still finding it too much.

I do wish school would listen though, they don't even have any ASD strategies in place. We're not asking for much, just more thought with language used, choices instead of demands (the teacher seems to naturally teach like this, so it shouldn't be difficult to ask the TA and PE teacher to at least try), a visible timetable for the day (they are flexible which ds can find difficult) and a home/school diary. Oh, and to understand that he also has spd, and any giddiness is probably down to this, not being deliberately silly, so please don't tell him off!

We3KingyOfOblomovAre Wed 09-Dec-15 19:21:07

Oh Phil. My heart bleeds for you because I was where you are.
Hope Friday at camhs goes well. I so hope he tells them.

PhilPhilConnors Wed 09-Dec-15 19:51:13

Thanks Oblomov.
I think I've read your posts in the pasts and thought our ds's sound similar.
How are you getting on?

PhilPhilConnors Wed 09-Dec-15 22:24:49

We've spoken about school today and he's seemed positive about going in, no pressure but seemed fine.
Until tonight, big brother seeing his arse and comments that he's stay off as long as possible. And kept saying it until it had the desired effect.
Anxiety levels have shot up again for ds2, meltdown at bedtime, sobbing that he wants to die and says he's not going to school again. hmm

PolterGoose Wed 09-Dec-15 22:28:31

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bbkl Wed 09-Dec-15 22:33:33

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PhilPhilConnors Thu 10-Dec-15 07:54:06

Apparently he's not going to school this morning.
I'm fine with that, and I do think at this stage in the term this is the right thing for him.
I'll ring the dr again this morning and see if I can have it in writing, and I'll email the HT again and ask for a response this time, to see if she's actually getting the emails.

I was meant to be Christmas shopping and sorting out what I've already got. Not sure when that's going to happen, but ah well fsmile

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