A cry for help

...which is coming from me. :)

I have sought professional help for C's tantrums. They have not dissipated at all. Yesterday they were at peak level with tantrums coming like so many bombs into the lives of all of us that are attempting to live in this house. He had one tantrum that lasted for 30 minutes yesterday (and many before and after that!), a constant barrage of SCREAMING. For a few days they really did get better and became shorter and fewer...but they are back with a vengeance.

While I have no prior experience, I just can't believe that it is normal for children to spend several hours a day screaming and crying, especially when their caretaker (me!) does not ever give into them or send them mixed signals in any way (that I am aware of, at least). The only solutions I can think of are a) at his mom's house tantrums are not handled the same way, so it is causing confusion and thus prolonging and exacerbating the problem; b) I am handling them in a way that is not sending the proper message to him, and/or c) there is more at issue here than normal toddler tantrums. For all I know it could be a combination of all three of these things. He is also getting 14-15 hours of sleep every day - that's a lot of sleep! I'm sure crying so much is really wearing him out so it makes sense, but it just seems like there has to be a better way.

It's to the point where I do dread taking him out in public and honestly we really don't go out much anymore at all, especially if I am by myself without my husband or another adult to assist (it's hard to carry a screaming 2 year old AND a 13 month old at the same time, plus open doors, get in and out of cars, etc.). If I have to run errands I try to do them during visits or during nap time if my husband is home.

I have read about some other methods, specifically holding children while they rage/tantrum. I'm not sure how I feel about it. Some of it makes sense, like if you isolate a child that has attachment issues in a room when he is throwing his tantrums it shows him that it is unacceptable to be angry/frustrated and that he should hide his feelings. Also I can see how it might be damaging to children that have attachment issues. But there is definitely a part of me that feels as though it is rewarding the tantrum, and honestly I don't KNOW if he has attachment issues or not. I just don't have enough education or experience yet. Last night I held him during two of his tantrums and I have to say that they stopped immediately when I held him close; however, he wanted me to continue holding him for several minutes afterward. I do hold him and give him what I think is plenty of physical time during the day - he sits on my lap a fair amount, I hug him a bunch and stuff like that. But maybe if he didn't get enough of that before he is kind of on a deficit and making up for it? IDK.

I am going to see if the book "Holding Time" is at the library and check it out, just to see what it is all about. Meanwhile I have started yet another log of his tantrums to specify the time they started, the length of time, and what the trigger was. Today he has already had two tantrums but they were very short, thankfully, and they were both over a dog bone (seriously). Ha! I am also going to talk with a therapist about it and see what she thinks. I think I am going to continue what I am doing (putting him in his bedroom during tantrums) until I get a solid log of his tantrums and triggers, and then change things up if the therapist agrees and see what happens.

In other news, D told his mom yesterday that I was not going to buy him school supplies. Nice, huh? The problem is that I have not gotten a list yet from the school. Our caseworker said that sometimes the schools provide them with all of the supplies, and obviously if that's the case then I do not want to buy a bunch of stuff we don't need. So yesterday I called the school he is supposed to attend...and he is not enrolled there. I can't enroll him because I am not his legal guardian. I told the caseworker a few weeks ago which school he was supposed to go to (his mom chose the school). But he is enrolled in a different school in LPS. And now that he is living with us in a completely different district he has to get permission to attend the other district, then once that is received his enrollment has to be changed from the one school to the other school! And school starts on Wednesday. How awesome is that? So I have sent his caseworker an email and left her a message about that. I can't do anything about it though. And no, we do not have school supplies yet since he might have to go to a different school depending on if they can get this stuff worked out!

I also took D shopping for some new clothes last night. It was pretty fun. :) Also can I just say - Why are little boys' jeans $8-$12 at Wal-Mart when jeans for my size are $20-$25? They use the same amount of fabric! I bet I could wear little boys jeans if my booty wasn't so big. I think ladies get the short end of the stick when it comes to clothes prices. Puh!

Comments

  1. Most LPS schools do provide all supplies..... but may have a "donation if possible" list. I only ask for kleenex from my students! :)

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  2. Thanks for the info! Do they even do supplies for middle and high school? I had no idea, I'm not from around here and of course have never had kids in school before! :) Where I'm from parents always bought all of the school supplies. I'm hoping I'm going to find out about the supplies on Monday...Tuesday shopping will I'm sure be ridiculous. If not then I don't think it's a huge deal for him to go the first day without much more than some pencils and paper. I hope. :)

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  3. I'm not sure about the middle and high schools. I'd say they probably have lists for those. Buying stuff for students was a new one for me too-- we always went shopping as kids-- to pick out the newest and coolest stuff! :) But yeah- I'd say paper and pencils will be good for the first day! I hope you (or rather the case worker) got stuff figured out with the schools! Good luck!

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