The two faces of J

Here are some great things we’ve been hearing from J lately:

After the nice play-date on Thursday, “I’m going to miss my friends”  I asked “which friends?” and he named all 4 of the kids he had been playing with.

After pulling out of my parents’ neighborhood to head home this weekend, “I’m going to miss Grandma and Grandpa”

Random times throughout the day without prompting, “I love you”

For the past week, every night as I leave his room, “I really love you.  I really really love you”

The not so great things:

Last week at school after spring break, and Sunday at our church small group, Wild kicking, scratching, and hitting for no reason.  Crazy meltdowns that are completely unconsolable.

After Sunday night, we have been working on vocalizing anger.  His school psychologist suggested a key word, but I feel like he is such a literal kid that a code word would get confusing.  So we repeat the rules “No hitting, no scratching, no kicking, no pushing, no pulling, and no grabbing” before every social situtation we are about to encounter.  Now we have added, “What do you tell mommy or your teachers if you are feeling upset or angry?” he repeats, “I say, I’m feeling angry, I need some quiet space.”  Very good.  Now I’m holding my breath to see if he will implement it.  I told his teachers about it today too.

At home and in the car with just his family he has been super loving and empathetic.  Adding more kids in the mix has been detrimental for a week.  He has had small successes though.  the same kids from Thursday’s playdate came over for less than an hour while D went to an appt and all went well.  J even hurried through breakfast so he could play.  All 4 boys were sad when D came to pick them up.

Here’s a picture from Easter morning.  You’d never believe that I had to wrestle J into the unfamiliar clothes just minutes before.  I had to take this picture early because it was brown from chewing on it by the time we got home 90 minutes later.

048.jpg  Oh and they both got haircuts that night too….picture later.

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3 comments on “The two faces of J

  1. “I really really love you” How wonderful! Everyone likes to hear those words.

    Melt downs like that are really tough. It sounds like you have a plan to go with. With Maizie it was helpful to say what we wanted her to do exactly instead of what we did not want her to do. If I tell her don’t hit she will usually hit. If I say to keep your hands in your pockets she will do it. If I focus and speak the positive words she then thinks those words. Like,’stand calmly and quietly, be close to me’, etc. Just a thought.

    We are still working on vocalizing anger. It has been a long process. It is great you have a school psychologist you like helping out.

    That picture is adorable! So happy!

  2. Have you tried giving him a “I need time-out/ space” card or similar to give to you when he needs space. It’s easier than trying to vocalise when he is already feeling angry. Might be worth a try.

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