Originally Posted by Stephenie
Stephandowen, we tried to kind of follow that idea today. I brought him to his room after every episode, to his beanbag chair with some books. He calmed down, but had several violent outbursts. We're planning on setting up a better area for him later in the week.
I emailed his developmental pediatrician and he is suggesting Risperidone. Anyone have any experience with it?
We did pick up the rescue remedy sleep spray but it didn't seem to work. About an hour after bedtime should have been we had to move the kids into the bathroom b/c of tornadoes (We are safe!) and he did crash two hours after bedtime with melatonin.
Sadly, he likely will continue to have these violent outbursts for a little while. There is no "quick fix", instant solution (at least, there's none that I ever found!). This is more about giving him the tools to take control of his own actions. He WILL have outbursts. You just have to teach him what to do in those moments. If you are consistent, he should even get to the point where he can tell he's going to be out of control and he'll excuse himself to his quiet place. DS is 7 1/2 and he can now see when he's getting really upset by something and will (sometimes, not always) go to his room. He tells us "I just need some alone time". Sometimes he still has outbursts (dh got bit twice this weekend, unfortunately) but it's a million times better than it was 3 years ago. Sometimes he just needs a little reminder from us ("it looks like you're having a rough time, do you need some alone time?") to remember what to do when he's getting upset. Very rarely do we have to carry him to a safe spot anymore (which is good- because he's too big now!). I encourage you to stick with it. It's HARD. I know. Sometimes you'll feel like it's easier to just ignore the misbehavior or tantrums, but you really do have to be consistent. Every. single. time.
I can't help with the medical/drug side as we've never tried any of that with ds.
Oh, one more thing, once he's asleep at night- does he sleep all night? Does he wake up during the night? Does he snore? The whole story about my ds is around here somewhere, but I will say real quick that at 6 1/2 years old- my ds had never slept through the night. He woke every single night, multiple times. He had horrible snoring issues (you could hear him snoring in his bedroom, which was upstairs on one side of the house, if you were downstairs on the total opposite side of the house- with the tv turned on). It turns out he had obstructive sleep apnea. At 6 1/2 years old we had his tonsils and adenoids removed. It was, literally, a miracle. In the last year since we had it done, he's slept through the night almost every single night (except when he's sick or has a bad dream). He no longer snores. Since he's sleeping through the night now, his daytime behavior improved dramatically! You know how when you don't get much sleep at night, how you're off the next day and kinda cranky? Now imagine that every day for your entire life! No wonder ds was so crabby all the time! We had the surgery done during his spring break. When he returned to school, everyone was shocked at the transformation. Even people who didn't know he had the surgery were coming up to me saying how wonderful ds was being and wanting to know what had changed over spring break Anyway, I wanted to throw that out there just in case it sounded like your ds. If I had known the complete transformation it would have had, we probably would have considered the surgery sooner.
Originally Posted by Stephenie
We do have immediate consequences for some things. If he hits, etc there's always an immediate consequence. The warnings thing was more about ending a preferred activity. TV is the only one with that many warnings... we warn him when it starts that it's only one episode. Then a 15 min, 10 min, 5 min, and 1 min warning. If we just turn it off he gets really upset screaming "You didn't tell me!!" so I know we need some warning, though I may be over doing it.
An emotions poster sounds like a good idea, I will have to find or make one.
Ah, yes. We've been through "warning h*ll" as well. You have to find the right balance between "not enough warning" and "too much warning". I've found that if I stray too far into "too much warning" then ds is just stressed through the whole activity and then flips out at the end because he feels he didn't really get to enjoy it. If I don't give enough warning then he claims I never told him For us, we use a timer. Right now we have a little tiny timer that we can set for however many minutes we decide. DS can watch the time counting down (a colored visual timer would have been better when he was younger, but now he understands the counting down so can do a regular timer). Another thing we've done, we let ds decide how much time he gets sometimes (usually). We will give him a choice "do you want 20 minutes of tv time or 30 minutes?" and let him decide. Then he can help set the timer. During that time I may casually ask "how much time is left?" so that he looks at the timer and can see how much time. It doesn't seem to stress him out as much as if I'm telling him how much time is left.
Another idea that we used when ds was younger is we made him "tokens". Really they were just pieces of paper that I had cut up and "laminated" with clear tape. Each of these little tokens was worth 15 minutes of screen time (computer or tv- very much his preferred activities!). He had to turn in a token to get his screen time. We set the timer and when it beeped he had to decide whether he was done or whether he wanted to use another token. We found that this helped him because he could see how many tokens he had left and he knew that that he was in control of when/how they were used.
With non-preferred activities, we found that if ds was in a good mood then we could "race". He would do his non-preferred activity (which was homework, though your ds is still a little young for that) and I would do dishes or cooking dinner or whatever. Whoever finished first, won. Of course, ds always finished first even if it meant I had to clean the same bowl 5 times We are really animated through this and I would run into the kitchen table (where he was) and peek to see how much he had left. He would run into the kitchen and peek to see how much work I had left. I would make a big scene ("Oh no! I can't believe you got that page done already! I'm still washing this dish and then I have all this left to do! I better go even quicker if I want to win!").