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Tallis33 profile image

Hi all,

I am a parent of a 7 year old, 1st grade, boy who has adhd. I also have adhd (diagnosed back in Feb and recently started meds and found the correct dose age). I am also a 3rd grade teacher.

As a teacher I have a lot of "tricks" in my bag for certain situations.... Like time management and helping kiddo get ready ect. But... Where I am feeling alone and struggling is helping with emotional regulation. My kiddo gets angry and quickly. The anger is masking how he is really feeling.

Something with trigger home and he will lash out (growl, get in my face, hit, shove, ect) with anger. I have to wait out his anger before the actual emotion comes out (lately it has been anxiety or sad). And then wait out that emotion. He has a spot in our house to settle down, with various tools to use to do this. He uses this space well when we are home about 60% of the time. The rest of the time he will lay on the floor and roll around and shove chairs and scream names at me. Or he will punch the couch pillows and call me names. When he is in one of these melt downs I can't reach him.

I have no idea what to do when we are out of the house.

I am a single mom and feeling pretty alone in all of this. His dad is in denial.

Hello and help please.

10 Replies

Hi- thanks for sharing this. My son was having angry, sometimes violent outbursts. He is 9. Very scary to see. We tried different medications. We also learned that he has ASD level 1. The two meds that seem to be quieting the outbursts are guanfacine and Sertraline. Also melatonin at night. Stimulants made outbursts worse for our son. Also-- we implemented a "cotton ball system" that earns him cotton balls for positive behaviors. This seems to help a bit as well. We've been trying to listen to our son more, let him lead the way on things. When he feels heard and like his voice counts, we've noticed that really helps things. It's so hard to be the punching bag or the target when your son is lashing out. The best piece of advice I can give is to do your best not take it personal, know when to walk away and not respond, if things get really unsafe or escalate you can take him to hospital. I wonder if you all have a therapist or counselor helping you? This was really important for us. Both you and he need a place to share what's happening, to get advice. Since our son has ASD we have to make sure we are in the appropriate therapeutic setting for him when it comes to therapy. But I encourage you to find the right type of therapy that works for you all. You're not alone, many others here struggle with very similar situations as you are going through!

Tallis33 profile image
Tallis33 in reply to Auggie123

Thank you.

The outburst are scary! Now he will give a shove but then stop luckily. It used to be to the point we had to safety hold him or put him in his bedroom and hold the door (doc and therapist recommended). I never thought about going to the hospital, that is a good thing to keep in mind. He is big enough now, that I don't think I could get him there.

Yesterday we were out at lunch with my parents and he was angry he didn't like the menu options. He tried to shoved the whole table into me. Luckily I got him out to the car before he fully lost it. He kicked the car seat awhile and screamed and tried to break the seat belts. When he was done he was fine again and we went back inside and lunch was great after that.

I have a therapist to help me, mostly I talk about my son and what to do. My son used do ay based therapy but his dad and I divorced and dad won't consent to therapy for kiddo. I currently can't afford to go to court to fight that.

His dad is in denial and thinks kiddo needs a firmer hand... Though everytime he tries that it all get worse. Not just in the moment but long term.

Kiddo can hold it together at school but when I pick him up we sit in the car for about ten min as he falls apart before it is safe for me to drive.

I feel alone and it is all so exhausting.

I'm so sorry. That sounds very difficult. I don't know if you mentioned- but is your son on medication? It was a hard decision for us but it has cut down a lot on our sons outbursts. We have had success with guanfacine and Sertraline. Stimulants made the outbursts worse for him. We felt that things had escalated so much that we had no choice but to start him on meds. Having him start on medication hasn't fixed everything- but has lowered the stress level significantly. Not pressuring one way or the other- just sharing what has helped us as I know how hard the outbursts are.

His dad won't agree to meds.

I’m really sorry you’re feeling exhausted and alone. It is so hard at times. I experience most of the same things with my five year old. Sometimes we just sit in the car after preschool while he throws a fit bc he couldn’t go home with a friend but don’t stay buckled up. I have to keep locking the doors hoping he doesn’t end up breaking the locks. But he eventually calms down (only if I ignore him and stay calm!) and is fine. They don’t know how to express themselves. My older son is on medication and it has been a life saver. Absolutely. But I’m so sorry your ex won’t allow it. When you can get him on board it will make such a difference. Until then, know you’re not actually alone, it feels like it when you’re crying in the hall outside their room after they’ve exhausted you from another fight, but we know what you’re going through. And phases do change so even though it seems awful in the thick of it, your son will mature. Not a ton of advice, just wanted to send sounds like you are doing all you can and that is great 😊

Tallis33 profile image
Tallis33 in reply to Momtrying

Thank you. The driving thing I am getting used to. I can't drive yet because he throws things and one time he threw his water bottle and it hit me,followed by his sweatshirt, which almost blocked my view. We had to pull over on the side of the freeway.

The car lock game... Yes, I have to do that as well. I also just sit silently and wait. Any talking makes it escalate.

I am glad I found this message board. It is helping me feel less alone.

I am sorry to hear all this. My kids have ADHD but they are mild. I am just wondering if your therapist can give you advice on how to get your partner onboard on both therapy and medication. I am also wondering if that is necessary that you both have to agree on medication? I am not divorce but I took less work so I can take care of our children and I go to all the Dr appointments and pharmacy by myself.

Our parenting plan is 50/50 so we both have to give consent for medical stuff. If one person says no, they need a reason. If I want to fight it I can, but I need to then pay a lawyer and mediator. Which would be anywhere from 2k to 10k. I can't afford that right now but am saving up for it.

Kiddo mostly falls apart with me. He has a big perfection streek so at school works very hard to hold it all together. I know he has melt downs at his dad's, but his dad goes back and forth on admitting that and not. Kiddo tells me he does and daddy yells so he tries not to do it cause his dad gets mad.

Tough situation. I hope you continue getting help from your therapist and to find away to get your ex onboard and getting your son treatment.

Thank you

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