DH spanked my SN child - UPDATE- Great dev. ped appt today!!! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 05-28-2012, 10:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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DH spanked my 3 year old with SN. We don't have a diagnosis yet, but we suspect Aspergers.

 

I am appalled that it seemed to have helped calm him down. Now DH is saying we need to be spanking him more regularly. I don't agree with it - so this is going to be a huge argument of course.

 

But I don't have any thing in my arsenal to bring up on *how* we should discipline him. We recently went to a developmental pediatrician who basically said "there's nothing atypical about him, he just needs discipline."

 

The way we have disciplined him in the past, does not work. We have tried start charts, placing him in time out, locking him in his room, taking away privileges, yelling :( , threatening, bribing with food, walking on eggshells, and he still exhibits absolutely off the wall, uncontrollable, wild and hyper, aggressive, attention seeking behavior. It takes 2 hours off fighting to get him to bed. I tried just dropping the nap and bedtimes, but lack of sleep makes his behavior worse.

 

Other times, he is calm and sociable, even speaking in language way beyond his years.

 

I'm so lost and overwhelmed now I don't even know what to do with myself.

 

Could use some advice?


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#2 of 15 Old 05-28-2012, 11:04 AM
 
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Here are a few resources for discipline and children with Aspergers:

 

http://www.myaspergerschild.com/2011/02/aspergers-child-discipline-101.html

http://www.bridges4kids.org/articles/2003/3-03/AboutAutism3-18-03.html (scroll down a bit and you'll see it)

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#3 of 15 Old 05-28-2012, 02:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you, the first article is great. Now I have to come up with some time to implement all of these ideas. I'm wondering if anyone on here has had to quit their part time job in order to meet your SN childs discipline and emotional needs? I'm so tired all the time, but we need the extra income. But many of his discipline problems didn't start getting bad until I started my job back in February.

 

The second article won't help me as much because they actually suggest physical punishment. That will just add more ammo to my DS's argument that we should spank him.

 

Thanks so much!


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#4 of 15 Old 05-28-2012, 03:28 PM
 
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Check out the fb page Autism Discussion Page. He's got TONS of good stuff.

 

I refuse to read or recommend anything by myaspergerschild.com or his fb page because when he promoted an article of his that stated aspergers adults need to have social services involved to evaluate whether they're good parents, I and a handful of other adults w/ aspergers syndrome spoke up in *civil and polite* disagreement with his information and he banned ALL of us from his page. I will never promote anything he writes again, I don't care how good it seems. Know your source, whatever you do.

 

For a kid on the spectrum, physical discipline is not a good plan because it doesn't fit the crime. Also, how often do we teach kids "no hitting" only to come back w/ a spanking? It's illogical. The key is consistency. Whatever you find to work, be consistent with it. Another thing I do is not take something away just because my oldest is speaking rudely or disrespectfully. We talk about it. We talk and talk and talk so that it'll, hopefully, sink in. 

 

You have to find what will work for your family and that's not always easy. 


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#5 of 15 Old 05-28-2012, 04:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks Harper Rose. I will check out the Autism Discussion Page.

 

I can't believe the writer of myaspergerschild would suggest that Aspie parents be evaluated. That is utterly ridiculous, laughable. Some aspies make the best parents I believe, because they can be so involved in researching and learning effective ways of parenting. Glad to know he thinks this way. I wouldn't want to get my info from someone who believes things like that.

 

Off to the A.D. Page!


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#6 of 15 Old 05-28-2012, 05:40 PM
 
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I was beyond pissed off at that. I even saved screen shots of that post and where he had deleted all the comments. He banned me and my page from posting on his. Completely rude. He said his page was a support page, not a complaint page. Um, the only complaint is that you're presenting parents w/ AS as people who are inept and unfit. Sorry, dude, ineptitude and being unfit isn't relegated to only parents on the spectrum. :p


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#7 of 15 Old 05-29-2012, 05:40 AM
 
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To address the "it calmed him down" statement - sounds like he was having a sensory issue and the spanking settled his system.  It's still wrong and still violent and you should really look into implementing a sensory diet.  If you don't have one - feel free to PM me with your email address and I'll share mine.  You can use a sensory diet in place of violence (sorry - that's what I consider spanking) and head off a lot of problems.  If he's melting, giving him a bear hug or squishing him between some cushions can be an effective means to settle him.  {{{hugs}}}


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#8 of 15 Old 05-29-2012, 10:50 AM
 
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I have quit my job in the past. I was a SAHM with DD1 for several years because of her multiple issues. She isn't severe SNs, she does attend school now and functions with meds and lots of accommodations but everything with her has been VERY time consuming. I returned to part time work when she was 7. A couple years later and now my third child is is not doing well. We head to the developmental pedi next month. I am "working" still but barely, 1-2 hours a week actually is all I am managing. My big problem is that I have a niche specialty job, I am the only one that can do it, I quit and they close the program which lays off several other mothers. So I am basically just trying to hang on even though the couple hours a week is a serious reach for what we have going on currently. 


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#9 of 15 Old 05-29-2012, 01:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by SpottedFoxx View Post

To address the "it calmed him down" statement - sounds like he was having a sensory issue and the spanking settled his system.  It's still wrong and still violent and you should really look into implementing a sensory diet.  If you don't have one - feel free to PM me with your email address and I'll share mine.  You can use a sensory diet in place of violence (sorry - that's what I consider spanking) and head off a lot of problems.  If he's melting, giving him a bear hug or squishing him between some cushions can be an effective means to settle him.  {{{hugs}}}

 

 

Hey Spotted Foxx, thank you for the reply. I would like that info on the Sensory Diet. I will PM you.

 

We do the bear hug, pressure massage and sandwich, but says it hurts him. Any type of restraint or pressure on his body hurts him. He starts screaming in pain and saying "It hurts" and "I feel hot".

 

He does like those things when he is already calm. But it doesnt do me much good then!

 

 

 

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I have quit my job in the past. I was a SAHM with DD1 for several years because of her multiple issues. She isn't severe SNs, she does attend school now and functions with meds and lots of accommodations but everything with her has been VERY time consuming. I returned to part time work when she was 7. A couple years later and now my third child is is not doing well. We head to the developmental pedi next month. I am "working" still but barely, 1-2 hours a week actually is all I am managing. My big problem is that I have a niche specialty job, I am the only one that can do it, I quit and they close the program which lays off several other mothers. So I am basically just trying to hang on even though the couple hours a week is a serious reach for what we have going on currently. 

 

Yes, it is very time consuming to take care of my DS. And thankfully, others will not be laid off if I quit. But I think it may be more of an issue with me and the way I process things. I don't have tons of extra energy or time to give. I am just barely keeping my life together, chaotic and unorganized as everything may be. Throwing an extra activity into the mix, I find I need more downtime. And that is not happening since DH is now taking the kids on the nights I work. Then I wake up to a wild, stimming, yelling, aggressive boy and I don't have another ounce of energy to give and I want to die. We need the money -seriously- but I can't do this to my DS. I feel I have to be present and full of energy for him.


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#10 of 15 Old 06-01-2012, 03:34 PM
 
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DH spanked my 3 year old with SN. We don't have a diagnosis yet, but we suspect Aspergers.

 

I am appalled that it seemed to have helped calm him down. Now DH is saying we need to be spanking him more regularly. I don't agree with it - so this is going to be a huge argument of course.

 

But I don't have any thing in my arsenal to bring up on *how* we should discipline him. We recently went to a developmental pediatrician who basically said "there's nothing atypical about him, he just needs discipline."

 

The way we have disciplined him in the past, does not work. We have tried start charts, placing him in time out, locking him in his room, taking away privileges, yelling :( , threatening, bribing with food, walking on eggshells, and he still exhibits absolutely off the wall, uncontrollable, wild and hyper, aggressive, attention seeking behavior. It takes 2 hours off fighting to get him to bed. I tried just dropping the nap and bedtimes, but lack of sleep makes his behavior worse.

 

Other times, he is calm and sociable, even speaking in language way beyond his years.

 

I'm so lost and overwhelmed now I don't even know what to do with myself.

 

Could use some advice?

OK, I think that your DH is thinking that spanking=happiness and calm. NOT TRUE. In fact, while it might make him calmer, it'll make the child worse. Tell him that. I know. I had a physically abusive father as a child- I should know. Tell him that spanking makes the child scared and distrustful of him, so if he wants a positive relationship with his son, it won't work via spanking. Plus, explain to your DH that the Aspergers diagnosis means that he is highly sensitive to certain things, and that will often cause the meltdowns- it's a problem with the brain, not demonstrative of too little discipline.

 

And don't yell or threaten or anything else unless your child is clearly pushing your buttons from typical kid behavior, and not because of something to do with his disabilities.

 

Continue with the charts and schedules, and reward him for his good behavior so he's encouraged to do it more often, explain to him what's going to happen throughout his day through social stories- often helpful by teaching the child to anticipate what will happen better- and explain to him specifically what he can and cannot do- i.e., you cannot throw blocks at your brother, but you can throw clothes in the hamper.

 

And make sure he gets lots of sleep, and maybe get him involved in sports? Just a thought- some have a lot of energy to burn off, and can appear off the wall as a result. Maybe avoid sweets? Some kids have a negative reaction to anything with sugar in it like candy, etc. that makes them even more hyper.

 

Get him involved in calming activities like taking a walk or getting a massage- good bonding activities that will make both of you calmer. Don't have him play games or watch t.v. before bed- it will make him want more and disillusion him into thinking that he's not tired simply because it's fun for him. Pick something else to do. Check for a possible ADHD diagnosis- a lot of kids are comorbid- meaning two DAs or more at the same time.

 

Change your pediatrician! He doesn't seem to be sensitive to kids' needs, especially Aspie kids, so get someone else who has experience with those kids and knows how to doctor them properly without dictating your parental methods.

 

As for your DH- I think you should research first about Aspergers and how it works in the brain and then explain to him, because if you don't he might be thinking that you're trying to pick a fight with him instead of trying to help him be a better parent.  Also bring him to seminars to make it more clear for him to understand, and you can work together to try to help him instead of against. Also talk to him about child-rearing practices- research together and decide what works best for the child and both for you.

 

As for your DH- whenever he blows up, let him know he can leave the house and take a walk or something- riding bikes, etc. If he feels the need to beat up his kid, then he probably has a lot of other problems too. Ask if you can go to couples therapy together so you can both seek help together.

 

Hope this helps! As I said before, I know how it feels to be on the other side of the fence, and it isn't pretty. Today, I have nothing to do with my father, and don't trust my kids with him, or myself. He was just a big verbal and physical bully who tried to control everything I did, which destroyed my self-esteem and confidence in myself and the world around me- and because he was my father, I had no choice but to give in to him and take it. Fortunately, I knew it was wrong- like you, I had a really supportive mom who taught me right from wrong, and that was one of them. Make sure you tell your child that you're sorry about how your DH behaved, but that make sure to come up with solutions with him so that both of you can prevent his meltdowns.


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#11 of 15 Old 06-01-2012, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you. That was very helpful advice. Just wanted to update and let everyone know that we had our developmental ped appointment today and it was a success!

 

Now, normally DS is very adult like in new situations such as doctors visits. But today was different. We got there a half hour early and so I went in fill out paperwork. When his father tried to bring him in a little later, he did not want to leave the car and I had to carry him in mid-meltdown. Ironic, but I had just finished telling the doctor that when DS comes in, he will seem very "typical", calm and adult-like.

 

Well he came in screaming and bucking out of my arms and crawling toward the door yelling "I wanted to stay in the car". It was a sight - to say the least. But I am grateful that he happened to have a meltdown in the doctors office. Now someone finally sees what we are going through day after day.

 

When I told her about the behavior, I was hesitant to say he is unvaccinated and that he's already been tested by the school district (negative for ASD) because the last doctor rolled her eyes at these and basically told us to rough our kid up when he misbehaves. But this doctor was very open minded about these things and it didnt seem to bother her at all.

 

She is totally on our side. And before we even mentioned what we thought it was, she said that "He's on the spectrum, high functioning - its Aspergers". Now I'm not sure if thats an official diagnosis yet, since we haven't done tests, but thank God we finally found someone who will help us! She ordered a chromosome test for him (since Aspergers runs in our family) and wants to see him again in two weeks. She is going to print out a recommendation to the school district to get him tested aiming for help with Aspergers - but she did say that she thinks he will score well on the cognitive tests so it may be hard to get help from them.

 

I was thinking that once someone recognized the issue that we would automatically get set up with OT and other types of therapies. She did mention that she wanted him to see an OT and an ST, but she never gave us the referral. I guess that will come later.

 

I want to thank all of you for your support. We've worked so hard to get to this point, but without your support and advice we wouldn't have even known where to begin. I know the journey has just begun - but I'm so glad to have friends who care.

 

Oh - and the doctor also told my husband that DS shouldnt be disciplined for issues related to his disability. So no more spanking here either. What a wonderful day!


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#12 of 15 Old 06-01-2012, 08:17 PM
 
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I am SO glad to read this!  You must be so relieved!


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#13 of 15 Old 06-02-2012, 09:26 AM
 
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She is totally on our side. And before we even mentioned what we thought it was, she said that "He's on the spectrum, high functioning - its Aspergers". Now I'm not sure if thats an official diagnosis yet, since we haven't done tests, but thank God we finally found someone who will help us! She ordered a chromosome test for him (since Aspergers runs in our family) and wants to see him again in two weeks. She is going to print out a recommendation to the school district to get him tested aiming for help with Aspergers - but she did say that she thinks he will score well on the cognitive tests so it may be hard to get help from them.

 

I was thinking that once someone recognized the issue that we would automatically get set up with OT and other types of therapies. She did mention that she wanted him to see an OT and an ST, but she never gave us the referral. I guess that will come later.

 

 

If you want (or need) referrals or specific therapy recommendations, ask--don't guess that it will come up later. It may be that the Dr. expects parents to ask if they want referrals. Our DP did not directly arrange any therapies/services but they did have a sheet of referrals available. We also ended up with a "prescription" (the Dr. actually wrote this on her prescription pad) for ST.

 

Scoring well on cognitive tests should not prevent him from receiving services as symptoms of ASD can significantly impact school (and life) functioning and aren't necessarily related to to intelligence.

 

Who’s eligible for services?

 

Finding Help for Young Children with Disabilities (Birth-5): A Parent's Guide (PDF)

 

I would find out what evaluations are typically done by the school district and read up on them. I would also request a copy of the evaluation about 5 days prior to the meeting to discuss the results; the meeting can be rescheduled if you feel unprepared because you didn't receive the evaluation early enough.

 

Early Intervention (Part C of IDEA) - Articles, Cases, Resources, Info ..

I recommended reading "Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy"; the information from the book can be found on their site as well (Table of Contents). Reading "Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition," would be a good idea as well). I also recommend printing out a copy of your state's special education law. You can't count anyone to tell you what you need to know; you need to acquire enough knowledge of the law to know if your child is getting the evaluations/services he is entitled to and when these things are legally required to happen.


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#14 of 15 Old 06-02-2012, 10:41 AM
 
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YAAAY!!!!!!


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#15 of 15 Old 06-02-2012, 01:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Early Intervention (Part C of IDEA) - Articles, Cases, Resources, Info ..

I recommended reading "Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy"; the information from the book can be found on their site as well (Table of Contents). Reading "Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition," would be a good idea as well). I also recommend printing out a copy of your state's special education law. You can't count anyone to tell you what you need to know; you need to acquire enough knowledge of the law to know if your child is getting the evaluations/services he is entitled to and when these things are legally required to happen.

Wow - it sounds like I have my work cut out for me. I did start the Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, but it was a little hard for me to have the needed focus at the time. I am really going to have to become one of those parents who seem like they have everything together.

 

Thanks, Emmeline. Now on to some research!

 

... and I'm totally relieved. Thanks for being happy for us everyone!


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