First the good news. I took my 6yo off gluten 5 months ago. That one simple change has completely eliminated the hyperactivity and reduced his autism symptoms by roughly 80%. Last week we noticed that the screaming, inconsolable meltdowns he's always had, have stopped entirely. Now if he gets frustrated or has a problem, instead of throwing a 5 star meltdown he just cries or asks for help like a normal kid.
But as his ADHD/autism symptoms improve we're noticing a new problem emerging. He's becoming very Oppositional. For example, when I tell him to hurry he'll purposely dawdle. The slight smirk playing around his mouth and the exaggerated slowness in his response is the giveaway that he's aware of what he's doing, and he's enjoying it. Whatever I ask him to do, he'll either do the opposite, or he'll make a display of doing it oh. so. slowly. He delights in "misinterpreting" what I say, such as when I tell him to wash his hands in the bathroom sink because I'm cleaning chicken in the kitchen sink, he tries to argue that there are NOT chickens in the bathroom sink. He also likes to push his sister's buttons and cause arguments with her. And on and on all day. His teacher says he's "argumentative" at school.
I would really like to think this is a temporary reaction that he's cycling through as his brain heals and gets back to "normal." However, having raised a child (now 22) with autism AND raging Oppositional Defiant Disorder, I am really alarmed and dismayed to see my son coming out with such clear signs of ODD.
I'm hoping there's a mama here who has some experience with this and can share some insight?
And if this is the wrong forum for this, I'm happy to have it moved elsewhere. I'm hoping that this issue might be something that other mamas have experienced as part of the healing process with GAPS or a traditional foods diet.
Are you sure this is ODD? Because as maddening as it is, it also sounds like life with my kids. They dawdle, they're silly, and they purposely start arguments. Mostly with each other. Also, there's this stage where they develop a sense of humor, but have no judgment about what's a good joke. The chickens in the bathroom sink argument sounds like that to me (from here, with almost no details). Your description seems pretty mild, but it's possible for this to actually be pretty extreme behavior.
I find that mine are at their most oppositional when they're bored. Is it possible that that's what's going on, especially at school?
hmm, that's interesting. I'll give that some thought. It also could be that I'm having flashbacks and over reacting. I'm also 55 and menopausal and short-fused myself these days.
The thing is, he carries it to the extreme where it ends up with anger on both sides. If I say no, there are no chickens in the bathroom sink, he'll say "but you SAID" and he carries on arguing about it just to argue. If I withdraw, hoping to avert a blowup, (and so I can continue to think I'm more mature than a 6yo) he blows up because I won't argue and lose my temper. He's purposely trying to provoke arguments.
The dawdling is not just ordinary kid dawdling because he's preoccupied, it's a purposeful "You want me to hurry? I'm going to go in slow motion until you can't stand looking at it" kind of thing. I don't know, maybe you're right and in some way he thinks it's a fun joke. You would think that after a dozen times of doing it and ending up with everyone upset, he'd think it's not so fun anymore.
And I know the obvious answer is to never rush him, allow plenty of time, and don't pay attention when he argues. But it continues into everything we do. If I won't participate he finds a way to annoy his sister. Or he'll stand in the hall and play with an annoyingly loud toy until we're all yelling at him. He gets a lot of enjoyment out of that too.
My DD is like this, diagnosed with ADHD - but mostly oppositional. And than we fight, and than she is sooo sad and hates herself.
I tried the "Transforming the difficult child" program, and it does make a difference.
I try to see it as a lawyer or politician in the making ;) She can argue you out of anything!
But, do post in the Special needs forum, I guess there are more people with similar problems around ...
Trin with DH , DD(7) and DS(5) , DD(2) , , (due 5/14)
I am not regularly online at the moment due to the above ...
The thing with ODD that I found with my older daughter, and now my son, is that it responds very well to the ADHD medication. His hyperactivity is totally gone now, but I still have to give him the medication on school days or the other kids can't stand him. He does stuff like showing off his chewed up food in the lunchroom or repeating "thank you Joey farts" over and over until poor Joey complains to the teacher. HE thinks it's funny but he can't see that the other kids don't like it and don't want to be around him. I am so eager to get him off the adderall. But without it, he's the kindergarten pariah.
Thanks Trinity, I'll post over there. I was kind of seeing it as a bump on the dietary journey.
Yeah, I definitely see that kind of dawdling in my kids. They're not distracted, or busy, or anything. They're just slow. There is no amount of "plenty of time" that is enough, sometimes we just really are in a hurry.
Does it help to engage in the chickens in the sink kind of thing in a more playful way? Treat it as a combination of misheard/misspoken things, and a game.
It sounds like he's maybe pushing for interaction. Yeah, everyone's annoyed, but he's the center of attention.