Meltdowns

It's starting again. The sleepless nights, the sudden fits of rage, the screaming. I always talk myself into thinking that Daniel is progressing and in some areas of his development, he does. Then he has his major setbacks and I feel like I'm back at square one. It feels like it happens overnight, he stops verbalizing, he doesn't want to feed himself and the meltdowns come more frequently than I would like. Before the meltdowns felt as if it was a weekly or  biweekly thing. Now it's about three times a day, everyday.  And all the feelings that I have been suppressing for the past few months, are so overwhelming that I feel like my brain is being crushed from the inside out.

I worry about that kid so much, much more than I worry about the girls. Sure Chloe is also on the spectrum and she receives therapy and the whole nine yards but I don't worry about her as much. She's like a nonverbal go getter. I feel like nothing will nor will she let it keep her down.

But Daniel is a constant worry. And it's unfair to everyone else because they need me too. It's just that he needs me more. I remember earlier in September of this year going to Daniel's school meeting and his teacher telling us that as parents we have to set the bar high for our children if we expect them to want to get there. So is that the problem? Am I not setting the bar high enough? I don't even know. It's so frustrating not knowing what to do or how to help him.

Everyday I have to change his pamper I wonder,  "Will I be doing this for him for the rest of his life?" "Does he seek comfort in not speaking nor doing things for himself because he knows I'll do it for him?" "Is he even capable of understanding any of it?"

It is tough to deal with the meltdowns too because it is more than just crying. Do you know what it is like for your child to be happy one minute and then in a blink of an eye out of nowhere he's trying to smack your face or kick you anywhere that there is a clear shot? It is a hard thing to take when you don't know how to help your child when he is clearly in distress. Those are the moments when I feel most like a failure. Sometimes I sit there numb and take the slaps and the kicks because maybe it'll knock some sense in me and trigger a way to help him. But of course that doesn't happen and all I'm left with are a few scratches.

The tears are another weakness of mine. Oh how I hate to cry but the tears fall so easily, too easily sometimes. I used to think heartbreak would come only from your partner. I never thought it to come from my own child.

Comments

  1. I'm sorry to hear that Daniel is having a setback.

    My son's name is Daniel, too. I'm sad that things are so difficult for our boys; I, too, relish every single positive milestone, and feel crushed when he takes a huge step back in his progress.

    Not "setting the bar high enough" as a parent? Don't let them cast the "guilt spell" on you, I don't know why they think taking that tact will be helpful. It isn't motivating, it's defeating. If only changing my expectations of my child were enough for them to overcome their obstacles! It takes energy, strategies, focusing on just a few important goals, and picking your battles along the way-- NOT PLATITUDES!

    When I hear teachers say stuff like this, I think they suppose that I'm a deadbeat parent, and that I'm not pulling my weight in supporting my child's education. Screw that--Nobody gives more than we parents do. Other people's roles, while necessary, are still supplemental.

    I'd love for smug teacher to have a dose of what it's like to be in Daniel's shoes, let alone ours.

    Hope things start looking up for your family. :)

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    1. Thank you so much for the support. It's just one of those times when you feel so let down with every decision. But I'm grateful to be able to speak on it.

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  2. hi...I feel like we are living the same life, minus the third child....my other son is "normal" but since he is mostly pushed to the side to focus all my attention on my ASD son.....While reading your story the water works started....The tears just don't stop.....your story is very encouraging for my family.......I commend your husband for sticking around and giving his family his support....support system is key......I m doing this all alone......I too have the marks to show...The bites, grabbing my glasses throwing to the floor....just bort him a helmet for home use because f the banging of his head......keep the faith....that's the only thing I can do now...

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    1. Everyday is a different day. That's what I focus on to get me through. I also lean on teachers and therapists because they give me tips on how to alleviate a meltdown and it can be the simplest thing. But trust me, some days are harder than others.

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