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ADHD - issues with respectful behaviour.

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hi, 

I have three kids, two diagnosed with ADHD, both parents diagnosed with ADHD. 

 

My two older ones have serious issues with respectful behaviour at the moment. They don't ask, the DEMAND. If they cannot get their way, they scream and get fits. They use swear words like old sailors (I never use swearwords, except the occasional "sh*t")

They use really strong words towards themselves but to others as well. 

 

They get angry really quick. Esp DS is having a melt down after melt down after melt down. He is very hyperactive and has NO impulse control. 

 

I don't know how to cope with this (the swearing and disrespectfulness towards other people) - I tried simple behaviour charts. We had a family conference (more than one, actually) Nothing makes a difference. 

 

Ideas?!

post #2 of 12
A couple book suggestions: The Explosive Child. I recommend this for its philosophy, "Every child does well if they can". No child (or adult for that matter) wakes up in the morning, planning to have meltdowns, antagonize their family and friends, or be angry. There are some lacking skills (generally in the realm of executive function) getting in the way of having a pleasant day. Remember, the meltdown is no fun for them either. The book discusses a long list of specific skills that need to be learned to get by, and addresses living with the child until they develop. Although the book is intended for families with older kids (if your signature line is current), the philosophy and attitudes apply. Smart But Scattered. This book offers concrete suggestions on helping ADHD kids develop the kinds of skills discussed in the book above. Also consider The Out-of-Synch Child. Addresses sensory issues, often hidden, that interfere with functioning in the world. Often paired with The Out-of-Synch Child Has Fun - pleasant ways to work on sensory issues. I don't believe any discipline methods teach these kinds of skills. If a child couldn't read, would "consequences" (thinly veiled punishments), behavior charts, rewards, or time-outs teach them how to read? No, you would probably start with the ABC's, then easy picture books, then progress to more complex, challenging stories. Likewise, the needed skills can be broken into their most basic components, and consciously taught. From your post, it sounds like the problem isn't the bad words or disrespect. The problem is the anger and how to deal with it. A 2-pronged solution would be to avoid anger-producing situations when possible, and for them to learn to cope with angry feelings when it isn't. I think if the anger is addressed, the swearing and disrespectful behavior will go away. Please excuse that my post lost its paragraph breaks. This was originally 6 paragraphs.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hey mamarhu, 

 

I love u :) 

 

I actually own all of this books. And I guess I found someone who has the same philosophy as I do, that's quite rare. 

 

I need to go through "Explosive child" again, carefully. I am so busy at the moment, that I kind of not get a chance. 

 

DS has SID, and is treated for it, but it is difficult. The day starts with meltdowns because I make him wear underwear to preschool ;)

 

I have a difficult time to find therapists for the kids, to work with, since I do not believe in charts and time outs. We actually have a letter from the child psychiatry department saying: Parents refuse to use recommended therapy. (It's like 1-2-3 magic for ADHD kids - and yes, I do refuse, plus ritalin for my four year old - no, thanks) - they just don't get when I say I don't believe in punishment and time outs and stuff. 

 

I am actually convinced that the high rate of suicide and depression in teenagers with ADHD is due to the fact that they are not trained to solve the problem themselves with help, but trained to jump when asked (might sound harsh - don't mean it harsh) - and a healthy teenager will refuse to do so, and than they are lost. And loose all confidence in themselves. Kind of happened to me. 

 

- But back to topic. My problem here is less the meltdowns, more the casual disrespectful manners, as in "Get me the drink, stupid!" (DS talking towards his sister or the other way round) 

 

I don't like it, I tell them I don't and they do it anyway. I am not sure if ignoring would be the right path or just telling them one million times, and someday it will sink in (hopefully :) ) - or if  I should "do" something. 

 

Thanks for your input, anyway!

post #4 of 12

We started making DS write apology letters for being disrespectful, it helps him reflect on what he has done after the fact.  I also refuse any request that is not asked politely.  It was REALLY difficult for the first month, but it has eventually sunk in.  It still crops up, but it is sooo much better.

post #5 of 12
I wonder what would happen if you answer rude with rude? Jokingly, as a caricature of themselves. "No, get your own damn water, mushroom head". In my family, silly, exaggerated mockery is a time-honored discipline tool. I don't know if it ever improved the Dumplings' behavior, but it lightens my mood. My kids are so used to it, they roll their eyes, but generally get the point. Of course, I often get this turned back on me, but it is all in a fairly playful spirit.
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Love both your ideas, really fun and creative! I'll try it and let you know. Esp. DD1 is totally into writing letters (she is writing them on the iphone, on the laptop, on the computer, even on paper, sometimes ;) ) I'll make a brainstorm for funny words that are not too harsh. Thank you!
post #7 of 12

I never would have tried diet for behaviour modification ever - I started to research about diet in order to figure out what to do about DD.S constipation.

by now we're grain free (except for rice, so gluten free), legume free, minimal sugar, minimal dairy. Even though I do not bother monitoring what they may eat in school or at other peoples houses, my kids are SO much calmer.

 

I'd look into it. Books like Cure your child with food (formerly What's eating your child), the Perfect Health Diet, Primal Blueprint, It starts with food - it is amazing what one can learn. And I formerly would have run a mile if anyone had suggested to me to get into this.

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
We tried that - once. Not very long though. It was really hard on me. But - I plan to try again with the starting summer holiday. Dairy free and gluten free. I am TRYING sugar free or low sugar, but it is so not working :( I guess - I am too addicted. I don't know what to offer instead, the kids ask for sweets 24/7, even the 18 month old knows where the sweets live, and they are offered sweets like everywhere - every dr.s visit, every shop, even in school for dressing up fast (what the h*ll?!) - and I feel like a big fun breaker with constantly saying : No, no sweets. NO sugar. Their Dad tends to buy them sweets when they ask for it or icecream or stuff... Tigerle, what do you offer instead? And what does no sugar mean anyway? Is natural cane sugar, honey, maple syrup okay? Do you use artificial sweeteners or this other stuff that gives you diarrhea? (forgot the name :) ) My kids don't get any form of artificial aromas or glutamat or stuff, and I cook everything from scratch, they get organic meat and butter and milk and stuff, but at the moment we are more traditional than everything else. Except the sugar. I love baked goods. I love to bake for my kids. I don't know if I am emotional ready to give that up ... but I might need to, right?
post #9 of 12

No, just keep baking!

 

Check out baking with almond flour and coconut flour (I love the former, am not so crazy about the latter). If you bake with almond flour, the natural sweetness of the almonds combined with fruit (such as mashed banana or apple sauce) or raisins (or, ahem, dark chocolate, which isn't exactly natural but close, right?) will be enough to make muffins and bread tasty. 

 

This one actually works:

http://simplybeingwell.wordpress.com/2012/08/09/yummy-basic-cake-recipe-gf-grain-free-can-be-cf-gaps/

 

This one sounds like something I want to try out:

http://www.runningtothekitchen.com/2012/08/almond-zucchini-bread-paleo/

 

We offer macadamia nuts, cashew nuts, rasins, coconut flakes, apple slices, banana slices, strawberries, yoghurt, cheese, salami slices, eggs. (Some kids react to dairy. Still hoping mine aren't among them. Too scared to try it out).

 

Once you have transitioned your kids from sugar burners into fat burners, they will be much happier with fatty snacks as opposed to sugary snacks. Same goes for you. O the freedom from cravings!

 

Yes, no sugar means just that, including honey, natural cane sugar, agave syrup, maple syrup...but the good news is that once you have managed thre transition, you can incorporate some of that back into your diet, in small steps to watch out for behaviour changes.

 

The transition isn't easy, took us months. Also took months to convince my husband. When he SAW the transformation with his own eyes, he was sold.

post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
I guess I am a bit in denial here. How do I manage school and preschool? They get lunch there, a warm lunch, I totally depend on that. And all the social issues as in: What do you do when they visit friends? What about birthday parties? I will try it out starting next week, when they are in holidays from school and preschool. I guess if the changes a really big, than I'll just find a way (maybe). How about baking without sugar? Does that work?
post #11 of 12
I work with older kids, so take this with a grain of salt. Eliminating sugar helps soooo much. You have to come up with replacements to make it stick-- it's a long term strategy. Also with the rude requests, as a teacher who works with teens, I get that a lot in the beginning...then I train them that nothing happens until its a polite request. I like the playful method mentioned above. If they start yelling/pouting/tantruming, I either walk away, or tell them I'm gonna go pop some popcorn and sit back and watch the show...after a few days they realize the behavior is getting them nowhere and it gets better. I never do sticker charts or rewards--just teach behavior in small steps, and set up the environment to make it more desirable to cooperate. Forgive the impulsive mistakes, and praise the small successes and wise choices made--and provide a lot of outlets for that boundless energy.
post #12 of 12

I know and respect that some families swear by it, but dietary changes had exactly zero effect for YoungSon. After a perceived choking incident at age 8 or so, he put himself on a 100% clear liquid diet (apple and white grape juice, and homemade chicken/vegetable broth, strained through cheesecloth) for about 9 months. Really, no exceptions. And no noticeable behavior changes. I would never mean to discourage a family from giving it a try, but don't beat yourself up too much if it is too much to manage.

 

It is a VERY slow process, but I believe many of these behaviors will simply be outgrown. Modeling good manners, appreciating when things are going well, and ignoring bad behaviors as much as possible are the things that seemed to help in my family.

 

One active step I suggest to families is to do whatever fun activities you enjoy together. Not intended as a reward; more in the spirit of building bonds. And not taken away as a consequence. YoungSon and I used to go to IKEA, and use their display offices to play "job interview" and the living room sets to play "elegant, rich family". As in, "Jeeves, please bring me more caviar". We got some funny looks, but it was free and fun. Nowadays, we shop in antique stores together - although we never buy anything. It is more like a museum trip. I try to share some light, casual bonding time with him every day - even if it is just to watch Family Guy on Netflix together at 7 AM, before school and work. I believe these silly shared experiences do more to build the bonds of respect and love than any number of behavioral interventions. Leave the therapy to the therapists.

 

And time. Lots and lots of time. Now 17, YoungSon is showing little of the typical sullen teenager moodiness, and generally is respectful and cooperative. No drug or hoodlum activity, very independent and trustworthy, with realistic plans and dreams for the future. You should have seen us ten years ago - this kid was a mess. I didn't mean this as bragging about my boy (well, not much!) - more in the sense of there really is an end in sight. These are rough times, but it won't last forever.


Edited by mamarhu - 7/7/13 at 9:02am
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