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Need help with violent 8yo DD

485 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  LynnS6
Not sure if this is the best place to post this (maybe I should have put it the the special needs forum) but as I'm desperate, here goes...

I am having MAJOR problems with DD2 (who will be 9y next month) I feel like the worst mother in the world and really, really need some advice


She has always been very tempermental/emotional and a lot more difficult to deal with than any of my other kids. I just thought she would grow out of it. But these past few months she has got a LOT worse - screaming and shouting, getting angry over virtually nothing (more than usual) all day every day. Flying at her brother and sister to hit/kick them over nothing. She is always saying she wishes she was dead and she wishes us dead and she wants to kill herself. She told me a couple of weeks ago (after I told her off and she stormed upstairs) that she put a carrier bag over her head to kill herself but it got too hot so she took it off!

It was after this episode that I took her to see the GP as I just couldn't deal with her behaviour anymore. He referred us on to the child mental health service and we had our initial assessment visit yesterday. The dr thinks it is very likely she has aspergers or something on the autistic spectrum and is putting her forward to be assessed properly. They asked me to get a report from the school and when I went to speak to the head (small school so she knows all the pupils well) she didn't seem all that surprised and said it did explain a lot (she said she has done a course in aspergers). I'll admit when I did an internet search on aspergers it does fit my DD

I did use some homeopathy on her when she was at her worst (thanks to an online friend/homeopath) which did help calm her intense anger/irritability down a bit.

But I have one big problem which I am finding very difficult to deal with ...

Over the past few months she has become obsessed with DS1 (6yo) and won't allow him anywhere near her. She won't touch anything he has touched or allow him to touch her. If she has to touch something he has touched (such as the sofa/door handle) she will have to use a cloth or baby wipe to touch it or wipe it/herself. She won't let him even look at her - she makes him turn his head the other way if he has to walk past her (at a distance). We went on a 2hr car journey at the weekend and she made him look out of his window all the way there. She says she doesn't like him because his breath smells, he makes funny noises and he doesn't wash his hands! She will fly at him to hit or kick him for no reason other than he's there a lot of the time. And she screams and shouts at him a lot of the time too to order him about.

I feel like a useless mother as I can't stop this behaviour. My poor sweet DS is being bullied in his own home and I can't protect him. I tell her off or I send her for time out but it doesn't change anything. She just yells that she hates me and I don't love her. She doesn't think she's doing anything wrong, even when I explain it to her when she's in a calm mood. You just can't reason with her - at all. I tell DS to ignore her when she tells him to look away or move away etc but he is so scared of her that he does what she says.

She is generally ok with the 2 little ones and is on/off with DD1.

I desperately need to get control back but don't know how. Please help me.
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That sounds incredibly challenging. I don't think you are a "bad" mom by any means. You sound like a very loving, very concerned mom, doing the best you can with a difficult situation.

I really think your family needs professional help to deal with this.

In the meantime, I think the best you can do is keep trying to protect your son, while also recognizing that your DD cannot voluntarily change her negative obsession with him, and that any kind of punishment or firm words are contributing to her self-hatred.

Maybe set aside some one-on-one time to reconnect with each of them. Doing something that they enjoy, with little to no correction, just being connected and loving, will go a long ways to helping offset the hurt and pain each must be feeling.
I don't know if I can give you any great advice but I did want to commiserate. My 4dc are the same ages as your older kids and my 8 yo dd has an extreme time trying to control her emotions. She has the screaming fits and the melodrama. The best advice I ever received was to treat her outbursts as a cognitive issue rather than a behavorial issue. Teaching her how to respond to stimuli as I would teach her to read or do math. This has helped some but with her home for summer vacation it has definitely presented an enormous challenge.
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I would DEFINITELY post over on the special needs board. There are several parents there who are very knowledgeable about asperger's and related conditions.

I know from my reading that anxiety often goes with Asperger's, and so she might have that - which would explain her depression too (they are often linked). I'm wondering too if there's a touch of OCD? Don't remember if that goes with AS or not, but I know that kids with Asperger's can get 'locked' into routines, etc.

I would HIGHLY recommend therapy/counseling for your dd if you can get her some and family therapy for you too. Kids with special needs create special dynamics.

If she turns out to be diagnosed with Asperger's, you should look into social skills groups for her and also sibling groups for your kids. It might help your ds a lot to talk to other kids who have sibs like this.

Keep your ds close to you so you can protect him. For now, I would tell her that if she doesn't want him to look at her, she needs to absent herself. That's her problem, not his. Make sure that her room is 100% safe and send her there CALMLY. "If you're bothered by ds, you can go to your room until you feel better."
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