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Having a great deal of difficulty w/ds starting kindergarten (long & involved) - Page 3

post #41 of 55
Just wanted to say if you take the slow route, that these were some strategies a friend of mine did.

The stages went like this:

stay the whole time

stay the whole time, shift body either so you're looking at the wall or your side is to the wall, not in a line of direct eye contact

do the same with body position, but reading a magazine or book so that you are not present as far as attention

take trips to the bathroom in between reading, saying goodbye and leaving a purse or bag he can see

take trips of longer duration leaving the purse

leave the whole time with purse there
post #42 of 55
Quote:
Okay, so am I doing the right thing by making him go to kindy? I'm going to work out some way with the teacher that we can get my kid to stay in school without me. It wouldn't be beyond him to shriek his head off and insist on waiting in the parking lot until I return. Is this behavior in the normal range, or is something "wrong" with my kid? Oh, and I cannot home school him, but I will take him out of school and start kindy next year if he truly cannot handle it. But then I may not be able to get him back into this school.

Thanks a million to anyone who made it through this post
Are the teachers supportive? Will they let him cry in the class as many days that are needed and work to make him feel comfortable?
post #43 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by zinemama View Post
You have tried talking. You have tried reasoning. After five years of your son screaming to get you to stay with him there is NO WAY that more talking and reasoning are going to prevent him from kicking and screaming when he is presented with the fact that it's time for school. "Taking it slow" is only going to prolong the whole sorry process.

Pick him - up no matter what he's doing - and take him to school. I would be very surprised if he doesn't calm down very quickly once he sees that his usual tactics aren't going to work.

Sometimes the problem isn't "discipline." Her son is past the age where it is typical to have such severe anxiety and it is not going to disappear by "force."
post #44 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by MommaMoo View Post
Yes, the teacher is quite willing to work with us to figure out a strategy. He shows every sign of being capable of handling kindergarten. He did awesome in class and was really jazzed by it. It's just the separation thing. He really needs to do this, and he CAN do it. I just need to figure a way to get him out the freaking door and on the school campus.
You may want to post on the special needs board; I have seen posts regarding child anxiety before.
post #45 of 55
Thread Starter 

We did it!

So today was the big day. DS got pretty upset before we left the house, telling us that he loves us so much that he doesn't want to be away from us He wouldn't get dressed, so we had to help him. We didn't have to force him because he didn't fight us. DH carried him to the car because he didn't want to walk. He calmed down and was quiet on the way to school, and walked bravely into class. We did the transfer a half hour before school started. Of course he cried when DH and I left but we did it pretty fast so he couldn't grab on to us. I called the school a half hour later and was informed that DS was doing great and walking around outside with his teacher and smiling I really his teacher. DH and I agreed that we couldn't have done this with a less competent teacher. We felt awful enough just walking away from DS this morning, but we had no reservations about the loving care he would receive. I just hope it gets progressively easier...
post #46 of 55
It gets easier. What usually has helped my students like that is finding what they love doing and doing it with them. I had one student who loved to water plants, so I gave that to him eright away when he came in. For a few days, he watered plants crying. After a while, he walked in with a smile going right for the watering can.
post #47 of 55
With my son, we tried going slowly. We really did. He had to go to daycare when he was 3 and we tried to make it a gentle transition.

It really made it so much worse. He really like daycare, but he liked it so much better when I was there too. It was like his perfect world. Fun activities, lots of playmates and his mom! What else could he want...

After trying for 3 weeks to stay with him and then leave with him always having complete meltdowns, I finally changed tactics. When we were both calm I told him that we were going to have a new plan. I told him that I would come in with him, read him 1 book and then I was going to leave and he was going to eat snack. I drew it out on a small piece of paper that we could both reference at daycare. We talked about it alot over the weekend. Then, on Monday morning, I did it.

The first time it felt like it went against every single parenting ideal that we'd held. It felt so anti-AP that it was insane. But I did it. I had to work. I had to actually go to work or I was going to lose my job. They said that he threw an incredible angry tantrum when I left. He wasn't really sad, but really really mad. The director was on hand to help out and he ended up spending the morning as her office assistant.

But over that week it got both worse and better.

The next week was much much better.

We all learned alot. He learned that sometimes we really did mean what we said. He learned that sometime our needs (mine to earn money so that we could eat and have a place to live) did actually outweigh his needs. We learned that it didn't break/hurt/destroy him for us to follow through even though it made him very sad/angry with us.

It really made out relationship much healthier. We made sure to have alot of reattachment time over the first few weeks.
post #48 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by MommaMoo View Post
So today was the big day. DS got pretty upset before we left the house, telling us that he loves us so much that he doesn't want to be away from us He wouldn't get dressed, so we had to help him. We didn't have to force him because he didn't fight us. DH carried him to the car because he didn't want to walk. He calmed down and was quiet on the way to school, and walked bravely into class. We did the transfer a half hour before school started. Of course he cried when DH and I left but we did it pretty fast so he couldn't grab on to us. I called the school a half hour later and was informed that DS was doing great and walking around outside with his teacher and smiling I really his teacher. DH and I agreed that we couldn't have done this with a less competent teacher. We felt awful enough just walking away from DS this morning, but we had no reservations about the loving care he would receive. I just hope it gets progressively easier...



Congratulations! That's just wonderful!
post #49 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by JL83 View Post
With my son, we tried going slowly. We really did. He had to go to daycare when he was 3 and we tried to make it a gentle transition.

It really made it so much worse. He really like daycare, but he liked it so much better when I was there too. It was like his perfect world. Fun activities, lots of playmates and his mom! What else could he want...

After trying for 3 weeks to stay with him and then leave with him always having complete meltdowns, I finally changed tactics. When we were both calm I told him that we were going to have a new plan. I told him that I would come in with him, read him 1 book and then I was going to leave and he was going to eat snack. I drew it out on a small piece of paper that we could both reference at daycare. We talked about it alot over the weekend. Then, on Monday morning, I did it.

The first time it felt like it went against every single parenting ideal that we'd held. It felt so anti-AP that it was insane. But I did it. I had to work. I had to actually go to work or I was going to lose my job. They said that he threw an incredible angry tantrum when I left. He wasn't really sad, but really really mad. The director was on hand to help out and he ended up spending the morning as her office assistant.

But over that week it got both worse and better.

The next week was much much better.

We all learned alot. He learned that sometimes we really did mean what we said. He learned that sometime our needs (mine to earn money so that we could eat and have a place to live) did actually outweigh his needs. We learned that it didn't break/hurt/destroy him for us to follow through even though it made him very sad/angry with us.

It really made out relationship much healthier. We made sure to have alot of reattachment time over the first few weeks.
I think a large part of the reason going slow didn't work was b/c you were going into the class and interacting with him. When I did the transition with DS, I only went into the classroom and interacted with him in there during tours. Once he actually started school, I was out in the hallway. If he wanted to go into class and work with the other students, he had to leave me. All I did while there was sit and read or knit or chat with the other mommy who had an anxious child.

DS's separation issues from me were truly about anxiety, not about it is nice to have mom focusing on me and playing with me. DS really wanted to go to school and do the activities there, but he also was terrified of being in a room full of strangers. DS would go into the room and work, but as soon as a loud noise happened, or someone jostled him, he came running to me. Basically, I couldn't leave till he was sure he was safe, was comfortable enough to talk to his teachers, trusted his teachers, and so on.
post #50 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JL83 View Post
With my son, we tried going slowly. We really did. He had to go to daycare when he was 3 and we tried to make it a gentle transition.

It really made it so much worse. He really like daycare, but he liked it so much better when I was there too. It was like his perfect world. Fun activities, lots of playmates and his mom! What else could he want...

After trying for 3 weeks to stay with him and then leave with him always having complete meltdowns, I finally changed tactics. When we were both calm I told him that we were going to have a new plan. I told him that I would come in with him, read him 1 book and then I was going to leave and he was going to eat snack. I drew it out on a small piece of paper that we could both reference at daycare. We talked about it alot over the weekend. Then, on Monday morning, I did it.

The first time it felt like it went against every single parenting ideal that we'd held. It felt so anti-AP that it was insane. But I did it. I had to work. I had to actually go to work or I was going to lose my job. They said that he threw an incredible angry tantrum when I left. He wasn't really sad, but really really mad. The director was on hand to help out and he ended up spending the morning as her office assistant.

But over that week it got both worse and better.

The next week was much much better.

We all learned alot. He learned that sometimes we really did mean what we said. He learned that sometime our needs (mine to earn money so that we could eat and have a place to live) did actually outweigh his needs. We learned that it didn't break/hurt/destroy him for us to follow through even though it made him very sad/angry with us.

It really made out relationship much healthier. We made sure to have alot of reattachment time over the first few weeks.
Yes, our situation is a lot like yours. I felt like, "How could I leave my child when he needs me?" But he didn't need me. He hardly ever looked at me while I was in class and had a blast. He handled himself fine in a variety of situations.

Our family learned lots of lessons from this incident. Now I can clearly see that DS had gotten used to me not meaning to follow through with what I say, like on the second day of school when I said I would be outside. Well he turned on the waterworks and I went in the classroom with him. DS has hopefully learned that he is safe in other people's care and can be more independent.

He is still in school today, but I spoke with his teacher on the phone earlier. She told me he cried for less than 10 minutes this morning, then worried for a while longer. Then he just let go of it and became engaged in the day. He even forgot about the stuffed animal that he brought with him for comfort. I am so, so proud of him
post #51 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattBronsil View Post
It gets easier. What usually has helped my students like that is finding what they love doing and doing it with them. I had one student who loved to water plants, so I gave that to him eright away when he came in. For a few days, he watered plants crying. After a while, he walked in with a smile going right for the watering can.
His teacher knows about his favorite things, so that's helpful. The kids all get to pick out a job to do, and DS was very excited to get to water the garden. He is a budding botanist (pun intended) so it was perfect that he got to do that.
post #52 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by MommaMoo View Post
Yes, our situation is a lot like yours. I felt like, "How could I leave my child when he needs me?" But he didn't need me. He hardly ever looked at me while I was in class and had a blast. He handled himself fine in a variety of situations.

Our family learned lots of lessons from this incident. Now I can clearly see that DS had gotten used to me not meaning to follow through with what I say, like on the second day of school when I said I would be outside. Well he turned on the waterworks and I went in the classroom with him. DS has hopefully learned that he is safe in other people's care and can be more independent.

He is still in school today, but I spoke with his teacher on the phone earlier. She told me he cried for less than 10 minutes this morning, then worried for a while longer. Then he just let go of it and became engaged in the day. He even forgot about the stuffed animal that he brought with him for comfort. I am so, so proud of him
Yes. My son would be totally interested in playing or eating until I would go to leave. Then he would freak out. I'd think that he needed me to stay, so I would.

I think that AP is really about a child's needs not their wants. I think that some kids will hit a wall with being able to move forward on their own. They need a push occasionally.

If I'd left my son and he'd spent the evenings completely miserable we would have reeavaluated. But he was basically fine. For a while he was a bit more clingy, but nothing serious.

He just needed a shove. And I'm glad we did it. Since then he's needed a few more shoves, but he always responds well to them. He's old enough now that we can talk about it. We can tell him flat out that it seems like he's hit a wall and he just needs to do it. He even agrees now.
post #53 of 55
Hooray!! This is wonderful. It sounds like he's a spirited little guy (you might like to check out Mary Sheedy Kurckina's books) who has some moderate separation anxiety.

My dd1 was more like eepster's dc, with true severe anxiety. It was pretty horrible and lasted throught at least half of kindergarten although it did get better and better over time.

So glad he did well today. Fingers crossed for many more good days, too.
post #54 of 55
Congratulations Mommamoo!
post #55 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by beanma View Post
Hooray!! This is wonderful. It sounds like he's a spirited little guy (you might like to check out Mary Sheedy Kurckina's books) who has some moderate separation anxiety.

My dd1 was more like eepster's dc, with true severe anxiety. It was pretty horrible and lasted throught at least half of kindergarten although it did get better and better over time.

So glad he did well today. Fingers crossed for many more good days, too.
I think "Spirited" is a good term for DS! It sure gets tricky, trying to figure out what will work, not wanting to do the wrong thing. That must have been so stressful to have your DD upset for so long. Glad she got better!
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