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Hi All,

This is my first time in me positing, so a tad nervous as to responses etc.

We have a 7 year old daughter who we have on a special guardianship order and have done since she was 1 years old. After a long spell of just getting used to her ways/tantrums etc, after watching the programme last year that was aired on ITV, I decided to contact our educational psychologist to refer us back to the paediatrician. We had an appointment last august and a follow up in February with a different Consultant, who straight away has diagnosed her with FAS. I would say that she is not as bad as others that I have read about, but when the littlest thing sets her off, this can be the most horrendous 1hr/2hrs ever. What's even worse is that I react to her, so the pair of us and shouting and screaming together. When she is in this moment she can be the most vile person ever but then something will happen and she reverts back to the most loving girl I know and a few hours later will always apologise. We are trialling her on medication at the moment which is helping in school but doesn't really seem to have that much of an effect at home and have even stopped giving her this on the weekends. Does anyone else have the same experiences?

7 Replies

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  • Hi, please call us on 01608 811599, the FASD Trust's helpline and get some specific advice, as the problem is that children with FAS get "stuck" in behaviour, so you have to help them calm down by naming the emotion and helping them calm down, otherwise they will scream for an hour or two, which is not helpful to anyone....

    There are also issues with medication and FAS, so someone can talk to you about that; you won't see a difference at home as the medication has worn off by then and you are seeing the meltdown as the medication wears off which is compounded by the end of the school day letting off steam.

    A good book to read is this one - amazon.co.uk/Foetal-Alcohol...

    You might also find it helpful to locate your nearest support group - the current list is here and the number of locations does keep increasing, fasdtrust.co.uk/cp8.php

    There are also lots of lovely people on here who will encourage you!

  • Thank you, I will call and also look at the book. Unfortunately there are no support groups in my area south wales.

  • Hi, my name's Rachel, I have a 9 year old daughter diagnosed with fasd, I'm in the Rhondda.

    I'll be starting a south Wales supportgroup for the FASD trust once all my checks are completed.

    In the mean time definitely order the book it is priceless.

    If you ever want to meet for coffee or just have a chat, I'd be more than happy to catch up, I can do RCT Bridgend Merthyr Cardiff or Newport.

    It would be wonderful to meet someone else who understands :)

  • Ah fab! let me know when its all set up, I will defo attend, as Im in Treharris. I ordered the book as soon as I had the message.

    Ill be in touch :-)

  • Great!!

    Im hoping to get a coffee morning in place early September.

    It'll be advertised on here.

    Also if you're on face book there's a good group called the friends of the fasd trust, LOADS of people like us muddling through and everyone is lovely and happy to share all the ups and downs x

  • Ah fab ill have a look now thank you :-)

  • Hi there,

    Meltdowns are really hard to deal with and can be frightening for the child and those around them. It helps more when you understand the reasons for the meltdown. If your child is having a meltdown, this simply means that your child is overwhelmed and cannot control her emotions.

    What you have to try to do is not focus on the reason they are overwhelmed and try to correct their behaviour eg. your child may be having a 2 hr meltdown because they expected to have strawberry ice cream after their tea and you only have vanilla. Therefore, the meltdown will seem totally out of proportion to the incident causing it and of course it is! However, in your mind remove the reason, and just focus on the fact that whatever the reason and no matter how small or silly it seems, it has in fact made your child feel very uncomfortable and totally overwhelmed. So deal with soothing and relaxing the child first and discuss her over reaction when she is calm (and as you said back to her lovely, little self).

    FAS children want you to stay with them when they are feeling out of control (because this is scary for them) so stay with her but don't react, and just calmly and very matter of factly, tell her what she is doing (because in a meltdown children don't know what they are doing because they have lost control) eg. you are very angry, you are banging your fists on the floor, your are throwing things, and repeat the same instruction over and over about what she needs to do ie. sit down on your beanbag, sit on the bed. Your calmness will help her to self regulate her own emotions. This takes lots of practise but the sooner you start doing this, the sooner you will make both your lives much more settled.

    Normal parenting techniques do not work with FAS children, therefore eg sending her to the naughty step would only make the situation much worse for you and her. When she has calmed down she will agree with you that she over reacted but might not be able to explain to you why she over reacted, but the reason is simply that FAS children get very easily overwhelmed and their bodies get flooded with emotion (it helps a lot if you explain this to her because she probably has no idea why she is over reacting herself).

    As parents/carers/guardians for these children we have to try our best to minimise the pressures they are faced (always plan ahead) with to reduce the likelihood of meltdowns occuring, which in turn is beneficial for the whole family.

    I hope this helps, and we do all understand your present difficulties, so please do not worry about asking for help.

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