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Anxious little one dreading return to school already - tips pls?!!

(5 Posts)
Blossom4538 Mon 17-Apr-17 22:13:57

Evening all,

Hope you had a lovely Easter.

Just a bit worried as our DD (almost 6, Anxiety, Selective Mutism, likely Sensory Processing Disorder - being assessed for ASD) had terrible trouble with school for the final 3 weeks of last term. Twice, it took me from 7 in morning until 10:30 to help her get into school.

She is going back in a weeks time and already dreading it. We started with a visual timetable but I'm not sure how much it helps. Perhaps it does a little, but there will always be something along the way, during the morning routine, which she gets extremely worked up about. One morning she ended up trashing the house. I had to walk her up and down our road to calm her to get her in car. She wouldn't wear shoes or socks and I just hopes for the best that she'd put shoes on once she arrived at school, which she did.
She looks a mess as has wild hair and will no longer tie it back or wear anything in her hair. Teacher thinks she likes to hide behind her hair - she comes out with it all over her face.
I have met with school over it and they have been great. Dd struggles with friendship issues and sensory related issues such as touch, sound and smells at school. She struggles with emotions but is an angel at school. Friendships dynamics have shifted greatly in her class during the weeks she struggled apparently.

Hopefully, Monday will go better than expected, but I have a feeling it's going to be a challenging week for all of us.

Just wondering if there are any tips please or experiences?

We have such struggles with getting ready in morning and getting ready for bed. It's a challenge most days.

EnglishRose1320 Tue 18-Apr-17 20:06:42

Sorry no real advice, just to say hope it goes well and your not alone. Mine go back tomorrow and ds1 is currently in his room screaming about it.

It's good to hear the school are on board. One thing I will say that helps is DS has a set t.a that meets him in the mornings, they go in five minutes early and discuss the day ahead. I know schools are stretched so may be tricky to arrange but can be done for just the first week of every half term with some children.

When he was younger (current teacher useless) we also got the next terms timetable and topics given to us so we could get him ready.

Things we do at home, he normally has story tapes to fall asleep when anxious or CDs with rainforest type noise. We are always clear about when he is going back to school but try not to go on about it too much, it's a tricky balance to get.

Good luck

Jakeyblueblue Sat 22-Apr-17 03:40:21

Hi, we are in a similar boat. Heading down the path for a dyspraxia diagnosis, possibly asd. My son is 5.5 and sounds similar.
Getting to school has been dreadful
This last term. Had to physically drag him most mornings but an angel once there.
In the end I lost my temper, told the school that it was humiliating for him to be carried crying and shouting into school, especially with his peers watching! The whole school go on through one tiny door and it's manic! He said that it was too noisy / overwhelming etc so I demanded he be allowed to go in earlier / later or in another quieter entrance and they agreed for him to go in earlier. Touch wood, he's been much better since.
Just something to consider that the arriving at school may be too much on a sensory level and this could be fixed by going in at a quieter time.
Good luck!

Melawati Sat 22-Apr-17 19:35:08

My youngest has a dx of adhd, is anxious and has some sensory issues and ASD traits (my oldest has ASD). She's 7 now.
We've had similar problems with anxiety and getting ready in the morning, although things are a bit better now.
What's worked for us is:
Hair - DD now has short-ish hair, a bob. It doesn't need tying back, is much, much easier to brush (she does it herself!) and has just enough to hide behind. Her hair was awful before and a massive flashpoint in the mornings. I'm amazed how much less tangly it gets now it's shorter.
Start of the day: my DD finds the transition very hard, and breakfast club is what works for her. It's quieter than the playground, at her school the same TA does it each morning, and it's quite a gentle start to the day. She'll also eat there, so it takes that out of the getting ready problems.
Like with so many things, it's finding what works for your DD and trying to make arrangements around that. I found out about breakfast club quite by chance when I had to send her in order to make appointments for my older DD on time. She loved it and asked to go back, so now we use it when things are getting stressful, as a coping strategy.

d1150971291443b001472 Mon 24-Apr-17 13:40:21

My DD is now 11 but we went through the same thing last year before I managed to get her into a different school. She too has Selective mutism, but not ASD or ADHD , Although they were sympathetic the anxiety just was not understood by the mainstream school. She was wetting herself daily as she couldn't ask to go to the toilet but there were so many different teaching staff not all of them remembered or were told to ask her regularly.
It helped her a bit going in early ,she was made a 'monitor' and went straight into class and sharpened pencils cleaned the whiteboard or something. but when she was really upset the only thing I found that helped was making her laugh. we used her favourite toy to help her get ready, the dog would help brush her teeth ( the dog held her toothbrush) the dog had to help her get dressed but would muddle up her clothes and make her laugh. It was exhausting but it calmed her for several months while her EHCP went through. The school would keep telling me that she was perfectly happy all day but she would burst into tears when I got her in the car,she felt safe there and then all the anxiety she had held in all day would come out.She would tell the dog what had upset her during the day and then the dog could tell me.
CAMHS have been completely useless. She has been referred 3 times in 5 years by a Paed but they couldn't help her as her school placement was causing the anxiety therefore no treatment would effective. She has been in her current placement since last June and we finally have CAHMS coming to the school next week to discuss her difficulties. I'm not expecting much from them though,they still don't want to meet my DD.
She is now in an independent special school . The mainstream system is just not able to be supportive enough for her,staffing changes too often and she needs stability before she can build trust in the teachers.I dread to think what would of happened if she had had to go to a mainstream secondary .

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