Life On The B Side

Taking all that life throws at us one moment at a time

Back At the Crossroads February 7, 2013

We’ve taken a step back.

*Deep Breath*

Following a full week of yellows (bad behaviour reports from school) and a really bad therapy session and constant getting yelled at at home for being silly and behaving badly, I got the following e-mail from Ace’s teacher today.

 

Good Morning!

I wanted to email you with some concerns that we are having with *Ace.  *Ace is having a very hard time paying attention in class.  He is not following teacher directions and is making noises that are disturbing the other children.  He is falling out of his seat or laying down on his chair and has to be asked several times to get him to sit appropriately. In the past we were able to turn the behavior around but the past couple of weeks his behavior has gotten worse.  It is starting to affect his class work as well. He does not seem to take us seriously when we redirect him.  We have taken him off the green team in hopes that he would try and correct these behaviors or at least try to be more aware of his actions but we still see little improvement. Any suggestions you can give would be greatly appreciated.  We just wanted to explain his current yellows and removal from the green team.

Thanks!

 

*Sigh*

I’m frustrated that we haven’t made more (or any real) progress where his behaviour is concerned.  We’ve tried punishing bad behaviour.  We’ve tried talking to him/reasoning with him.  We’ve tried rewarding good behaviour.  We’ve limited his sugar intake.  We’ve tried providing him with more time to run around (to release energy).  He gets occupational therapy twice a week.  We’ve tried large group (10 kids) and small group (3 kids) therapy.

 

We do have stretches of what seems to be improvement but then we end up back here.  At a place where I have no idea what to do to help my child succeed.

I could try talking to his occupational therapist about this but I don’t know if or how that would help.

He’s not scheduled to see his neurologist until the end of March.  Even then, what good does seeing her do?  He’s not on any medication and we do not want to put him on any.

Are we doing him a dis-service by not medicating him?  Maybe

Would we be doing him a dis-service by medicating him?  Maybe

 

And that’s where we are.  I look to the left and I’m scared.  I look to the right and I’m lost.  I look straight ahead and the fog is too dense to see.  I look behind and it’s full of land mines.

Caught in the middle is my Ace.  I know he doesn’t like to get in trouble.  I know he worries about us getting mad at him.  I know he loves getting praise and awards for good behaviour.  I know it’s hard for him to always do what he’s supposed to do.  I know something needs to happen.  I know he can’t go on like this.  I know everything we do/try is with his best interest at heart; not what’s easiest for us.  I know we haven’t found the right thing yet and I know it makes me sad and fretful.

 

 

I guess the only other thing I can say at this point is … *To Be Continued*

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10 Responses to “Back At the Crossroads”

  1. solodialogue Says:

    Medication is scary because we don’t know how our kids will react or if they will have side effects and it is a personal issue for you for sure. For me, we had recommendations from our ABA director to try it. The ADHD meds commonly used do not last long in their system. My son takes a dose before school and it is worn off by 11:30 in the morning. He has a second smaller dose at school to make it through the rest of the school day. Almost instantly, his teachers saw a huge improvement in his behavior with no side effects. It did take a few tries to come to the right dose- where he was not too tired. The thing about the meds is that you will be able to tell right away whether or not they can help Ace and if you don’t like his reaction on the med you can stop and it’s out of their system the next day! Don’t rule it out because of fear. It could be a very valuable thing for him. Of course, if you don’t medicate due to some other reason, I don’t mean to stick my nose in, but I just want to share our experience so you have something to gauge your choice with. Hugs for both of you as you figure out what’s best.

    • Hi Karen. I really appreciate your comment. The biggest issue with meds is that we’re scared. I hate the idea of using our kids as guinea pigs. There is so much that’s unknown about the meds and brains etc. Everyone seems to go thru a lot of trial and error. Your comment did help me to feel calmer about the possibility. Big thanks.

  2. Lisa Says:

    ((Hugs)) I know what that feels like. I am sorry to hear that he’s struggling so much. Is he allowed to have sensory breaks in his day at school? Both of my boys benefit from these. Could he be hungry? I know some kids really need a small snack (protein) every couple hours.

    I know how hard it is to want to fix the issue but not even really know what to do. Oh, do I get that.

    Thinking of you all…

    • Thanks so much Lisa. I didn’t mention it in the post but yes he does get sensory breaks. I haven’t thought about him being hungry but I doubt that’s it because he acts up all day sometimes. Before, during and after eating included.

  3. Cyn Says:

    I wanted to add to what Lisa said…..if you want to try a different route talk to your OT about a sensory diet for Ace (if he doesn’t have one already). He might be having troubles regulating his body re: all the input coming in at school and in other situations etc. I can only go on what my son is going through when he becomes dis regulated and can go into what is known as “flight or fight” and/or shutdown. Signs of this for my son is floppy, falling out of his chair, lying on his side in circle time, making funny noises, clearing things off of a table quickly. One of the things an OT can do for sitting at a desk is to put these large rubber like bands on the legs of the chairs for him to bounce his feet on to stay alert. Another thing they use is to place a little wobble cushion on their chair to keep them alert, Why? It’s actually more work for our bodies to stay alert and still on a chair hence the need to walk around every once in awhile not get floppy etc. I thought I’d share that we have had some challenges with our son (especially last year) and the behaviour approach didn’t work only made it worse until we let the OT’s investigate and light bulbs started going off. Good luck and free to ask any questions and hang in there .

    • He does get sensory breaks and we’ve tried sensory diet stuff. They didn’t do much good and in some cases made it worse b/c he spent more time playing with the fidget toys or wiggle chair than anything else. Thanks tho.

  4. Neil N Says:

    Echoing some of the others. We held off on meds for 8 years so I understand the hesitancy. We have seen some benefit from them, but I’m hardly a promoter of meds as some sort of miracle cure, and it took a lot of experimentation before we found something that worked without awful side effects. Our son did also benefit from a sensory diet. He would take breaks, do jumping jacks in the hall, chew gum or starburst etc. Also, when we specifically had issues with sitting upright and being “floppy”, two things worked a little bit. One, put a book on his lap, which forces him to sit upright to prevent it from falling. Later they progressed to just a napkin. They also tried a weighted vest a few times which seemed to help a little as well. I know that his weighted blanket has worked wonders with his sleep, so I’m a believer in pressure as a viable aid for some of these issues. Best of luck. It will get better!

  5. rhemashope Says:

    Oh friend, hugs. I get it – the not knowing how, why, or what to do… and the discouragement of taking a step (or 2 or 3) back. I don’t have any advice to offer besides what’s already been said… meds helped us get out of a horrible behavior period with Rhema. We also seemed to have some success with a pressure vest. You and your sweet boys have my heart and my prayers.

  6. Yep! Agree with what everyone has said. I am also about to start a meds trial with my boy. To be honest I’m less worried about him taking the meds (very confident in our doctor plus I have seen the amazing impact they can have for some kids – when it is right for them). The thing I am most worried about is his appetite. He has never been a good eater and he is in a good place right now (except he would be happy to exist on up&go) and don’t want him to lose his appetite. But, would LOVE him to be able to focus long enough to be able to learn. That will make a huge difference to his happiness (and mine).

  7. I am so sorry! Sometimes we just use a great big hug and some help with an answer. My son has been on a long acting pill for 2 months. He has ADD and is doing much better in school. It certainly is not a fix all and it definitely makes him moody. However, we do not see the swings many of my friends do on the short acting pills. Hang is there. You will figure it out. Every day seems to fix some things as well as introduce news challenges. It is frustrating to say the least. If only we could fix our kids with love….


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