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Discussion Starter #1
My wife and I have been struggling with our son for some time. He's a fun kid, lovely, maddening, healthy and pretty normal. To get ahead of the obvious suggestions, he eats healthy, sleeps a normal amount, and has a pretty consistent routine. He's almost 5, in Junior Kindergarten. Mom works, and he is in an after-school program until 5.

I thought I'd reach out for other's experience. We have started the process of getting him into specialists...I'm not sure how to start identifying what "he has", or if its even anything outside the normal.

Since he was 2, we had issues with his temper, with conflict or stressful situations. We wrote it off as "terrible twos". He got better in some ways, worse in others.
His behaviour at school is acceptable, according to the school. Some minor hiccups, but nothing outside the norm for a boy his age. I would identify him as an introvert. He can play with others, but often is on his own. He wants to please his teacher, and be included in class.

At home, he can have a good day, and everyone is happy. If it's a "bad day" he is off the rails. When I travel for work, my wife really bears the brunt: Unreasonable fighting over nothing: De-escalation is impossible, if he digs in: It will usually end with deliberate damage, physical fights, biting, hair pulled, screaming. He can pull the same things with me, but its worse when I'm gone.
Getting angry with him doesn't work. Being calm, and trying bring him down gently doesn't work. It's over once he blows up, and when he decides he's done.
Punishment / grounding is no threat. He does not react to anything being taken away, or "time outs". Put him in his room, and he'll tip over a dresser, rip the closet apart.

The threat of a consequence will not stop anything from happening, although he understands what a consequence is...and we follow through.

Triggers seem (but not always) to be:
Fatigue: The end of the school day, he's wiped.
Rushed schedule: Mom's busy, sister needs to go to swimming...please finish your dinner
Crowds: seem to stress him out, but not always
New social situations: dinner at a friend's house, etc. He can find a spot alone, and start to get into something. He knows its wrong. You have to watch him closely. Try to stop him, and it can end in a massive tantrum. He dug his nails into my wife's arm, drawing blood. He then collapsed in tears, and mom just held him...

What we have done:
Allergy/nutrition/health testing: (he's ok)
Language testing: His verbal expressive skills are behind normal, but we're working on it...He's getting close to the "normal" range. Comprehension is above average: he's a sharp kid.
When he was 2-3, the verbal expressive shortcomings were always a big frustration for him.

What's next: Our doctor is going to get us on the list for a behavioural specialist. Not sure what that entails.

If anyone has had experience with this, I like to hear about it. My wife is in tears, the end of her rope. He's unable to cope with his mental state, and she has to deal with the outcome.

Love him to pieces, and enjoy time with him..It's sad to have this cloud on the household.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Much appreciation here for the PMs. It's good to hear other family's experiences and challenges.

The thing my wife and I had to get over was the fear of diagnosis. You have to admit something is wrong, and the fact that it may be a life long thing. We made excuses, we tried to work within the situation and cater to his behaviour (within reason).

No real updates yet, the process has begun. Just the notion that our son is going to these sessions has improved his self-awareness, and thus his self control. :thumbup:
If he "buys in" to a process, whatever it may be, he's all in. He strives for structure and rules, but he has to believe in it. It has to be on his terms.
 

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Sounds somewhat like my great nephew. He's 4 now and up until recently he could be nothing short of a nightmare. He was/is slightly behind verbally and like you say it lends to some of the frustration. We weren't sure whether he had behavioral issues or his parents (my nephew) lack of discipline, setting rules/boundaries.
He was recently diagnosed with very mild autism, and through whatever treatment they were told to use he's turned a full 180°. My sister visited them a few weeks ago, and visited a full day with them. 6 months ago a couple of hours would have been the limit.
Good luck with your son. It's amazing how siblings can receive/process/react to input in totally different ways. 20 years from now you'll describe it as simply a little rough patch..

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
 

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Just noticed this thread and was wondering how things were going.

Been there, done that, should have written a book. Maybe a blog.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Things have been much better. He has not been categorized into any "spectrum" streams. We have been at a family counsellor that has been helping us all through it. The main point is that our little guy is on board: This is "his" appointment.
We have been all been learning how to stop, and catch the behaviour, before it escalates. He's able to stop....stew....pout....but he stops himself.

We have been structuring the day and our conversation to avoid the things that trigger his anxiety...Slowly, we will be introducing the odd "fire drill" to teach him to deal with these things.

Remember how he would not act out with others? A happy coincidence was that a woman we knew from our church is a volunteer Sunday School teacher. Our son has really bonded with her. We shared our challenges, and she has spent time with him...Of all the things that resonated with my son, the Bible stories and the plays they put on have helped him. He has been given small roles in the play, and has pushed himself to be part of it.
More than once he has told us about how "bad choices hurt us and Jesus". Odd words coming from a kid....But it's something he goes back to often.

The 2 of us went to the car show Saturday. We both had a great time. Moments like that help heal the damage.
A kind gentleman let us sit in his 65 Chevy. :thumbup:
 

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Great news! Getting them onboard and teaching them self-regulation is pretty big. Our daughter is mid-spectrum, and has a number of issues, one of which is self-regulation and poor impulse control. It's an ongoing challenge, but with time and therapy, lots of reminders, and some medication, it's better. Keep fighting the good fight, it really is worth it to see such positive change. :thumbup:
 

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Things have been much better. He has not been categorized into any "spectrum" streams. We have been at a family counsellor that has been helping us all through it. The main point is that our little guy is on board: This is "his" appointment.
We have been all been learning how to stop, and catch the behaviour, before it escalates. He's able to stop....stew....pout....but he stops himself.
Awesome.



Great news! Getting them onboard and teaching them self-regulation is pretty big. Our daughter is mid-spectrum, and has a number of issues, one of which is self-regulation and poor impulse control. It's an ongoing challenge, but with time and therapy, lots of reminders, and some medication, it's better. Keep fighting the good fight, it really is worth it to see such positive change. :thumbup:
:thumbup::thumbup:
 

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Getting our younger one to realize that he could walk out of stressful situations and take a break was the big deal for us. He's still kind of a PITA, but he's a loving and caring PITA now.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
My wife and I had a moment last night over a glass of wine, and I thought I should update this, thank those that reached out to me, and maybe give others hope.

Our little guy has been great since school started. I credit the teacher. They school had to split up the Kindergarten class into 2 splits: 8 kids went into the SK-1 split, and the rest are in the SK-JK split.

The school's teachers had more faith in my son that we did. He's in the SK-1 split. They told us he is one of the "stronger" students, and more mature...better suited for the SK-1 class.

It's made such a difference. He has learned so much, so fast. His speech is awesome, reading and writing are excellent. His social behaviour is so much better. No outbursts. He's so much fun. Talking to his teacher, he just wants to be like the older kids.

For those struggling, hang in there.
 
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