I have three children, each of which is extremely unique. Each has their own personalities and quirks about them. I love them each and love their uniqueness. Sometimes this uniqueness is a little much though. Each throw their own type of tantrums or fits. My oldest son is very emotional, as I hear a lot of 11 year old boys are. He gets mad quickly but he’s pretty easy to manage. My youngest son is 5 and very easy to manage. He will cry if he thinks he has disappointed us and if he’s being mean or bad, we can tell him to go to his room until he’s happy and he does. Now our 8-year-old daughter is a completely different story. Let me explain….
We have been having issues with fits. Not just a normal fit, but a lay on the ground, kick, scream, hit and anything else bad you can think of fit. It’s tiring. This used to happen occasionally and lately it has been happening more and more….let’s say 2-3 times per day. These types of fits make life miserable. I can hear her screaming and crying in my head, hours after it has stopped.
What have we tried:
While we have not been crazy enough to make her run for three hours straight, we have tried many different things, that work on most kids.
- Reasoning with her (nope, there is no reasoning, she just screams to leave her alone)
- Time out
- Writing sentences (you’d think 400 sentences in one day would make her change her attitude…nope!)
- Ignoring the behavior (that just makes it worse)
- Grounding her to her room
- Removed everything from her room. (just a mattress on the floor)
- Took away her normal clothes and replaced with uniforms.
- Positive re-enforcement
- Removed Red Dye from her diet
- Quality one-on-one time
Okay, so I know we’ve been doing more, but that’s what is on the top of my head. This has been going on for quite some time. We’ve tried everything that anyone has told us…..nothing works. The outbursts are getting worse. She’s a perfect angel at school, but at home it is a whole different child.
I decided it was time for counseling. Maybe they could figure out what is going on with her, right? They are the professionals. My son’s counselor, about 2 years ago, said she didn’t know what to do with Kylie and didn’t want to see her…so I wasn’t sure counseling would be the right avenue. I’m desperate..I’ll try anything! I called around and got in with the quickest appointment possible. After our first visit the advice we were given was to spend more one-on-one time and ignore her fits. Uuumm…sure, easier said than done. We did it though. She helped me make dinner, we played games and then she threw a huge fit because it was bed time. Ugh, okay. Second appointment and guess what? They don’t even know what to tell me to try. We’ve tried everything.
Research it myself!
When my oldest was younger he was diagnosed with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). He grew out of it but now Kylie obviously has it as well. Great.
Let me explain what ODD is…..
Children with ODD show a pattern of uncooperative, defiant, hostile behavior towards people of authority. It can interfere with day-to-day functioning. Symptoms may include:
- Frequent temper tantrums
- Excessive arguing with adults
- Often questioning rules
- Active defiance and refusal to comply with adult requests and rules
- Deliberate attempts to annoy or upset people
- Blaming others for his or her mistakes or misbehavior
- Often being touchy or easily annoyed by others
- Frequent anger and resentment
- Mean and hateful talking when upset
- Spiteful attitude and revenge seeking
This is a fairly common disorder, effecting 1 in 16 children. Some children that are diagnosed with ODD may also have other disorder
My next step:present, such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), learning disabilities, mood disorders (depression, bipolar disorder) and anxiety disorders.
I am taking my daughter to have a full assessment completed by a psychiatrist next week. We’ll see what they have to say. The screaming, fighting, yelling, hitting, kicking…..all needs to stop. There are days I could just cry all day long because I am so hurt, so upset that my child is acting this way. When you have a child that acts this way, it can make you feel as if you did something wrong…like your parenting skills are not up to par. I mean, other people’s children don’t act this way…..so it has to be something I did…right? No. There may be something psychological wrong that causes your child to act the way that they do and there is nothing you can do or say that will correct their behavior.
Sometimes you must call in the experts for a resolution.
Have you dealt with a child that was diagnosed with ODD or other behavior issues? How did you handle it?