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Old 03-23-2010, 08:18 PM   #1
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frantic temper tantrums

My nephew is 4 1/2. He was diagnosed with ODD w/ Asbergers a few years ago. I am not around him very much but when I am I see that there is no discipline from his parents. he can push and hit the younger kids and all they say is '**** dont do that, its not nice'. There are no consequences for his actions. I have questioned this and I am told that he doesnt understand what discipline is, so it isnt worth our time to try. I especially questioned this when he pushed his cousin down and made him hit his head and he needed stiches. I have also witnessed an almost psychotic temper tantrum in the middle of the night and he was 100% inconsolible (sp) for almost 2 hours. Screaming at the top of his lungs. It was like he was in a trance. It was really scary. has anyone experienced anything like this? Is there something else going on? He goes to pre K and therapy. but he has been missing school and therapy because he is up all night throwing a tantrum and when he finally falls asleep they dont want to wake him. Then when he wakes up in the morning its the same thing for another 2 hours until he finally calms down, then it is 'give in to **** all day so we dont make him mad..'.. The parents are going to have a long haul if they dont figure something out. he is only 4 1/2.. Please help

 
Old 03-23-2010, 09:42 PM   #2
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

I strongly encourage you to reccommend to your sister that they have your nephew seen by a child neurologist. Those horrible night crying spells where he is inconsolable might be able to be relieved by appropriate medication. He should not have to suffer like that and it sounds like he is getting aggressive and harmful to the little ones and this should also be discussed with a dr. There is help for him - I hope you can convince them to see a child neurologist.

 
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Old 03-24-2010, 02:05 PM   #3
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

Seems I am banging on at the same thing, on all my posts here this evening.

this is my experience of a mum of an autistic child, 5 yrs old

Autistic kids are really hard to discipline, especially if they are going nuts. It is up to the parents to supervise their autistic kid 24/7. This can be very tiring, so any support without judgement is greatly appreciated. If you have kids, then just supervise them all the time when they are with their cousin. If you dont have kids, then help with the supervision of your nephew when you can.

The solutions in a nutshell
Caesin and Gluten intolerence causes autistc kids to go nuts.
Eliminate these foods from his diet and he will be much more calm, great reduction in both the frequency and amplitude of hysterical fits.
Give him a couple of squirts of liquid melatonin at night and he will sleep;
Read up on ABA to manage the behavioural problems. Spend as much time and money as possible on getting this intervention as soon as possible.

Dont know if your sister in law is ready to hear this, but it might save her lots of heartache if you bring it to her attention as gently as possible.

 
Old 03-24-2010, 04:41 PM   #4
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

Thank you for all of your advice. I am definitely not judging her or my brother at all in this situation. It is hard for the rest of us to have a good balance when we are all together because we cant supervise 24/7. It has gotten to the point where we dont even have get togethers because it is mass chaos and one of the younger children usually gets hurt or should I say terrorized. Sad part is, my sister in law doesnt want to hear our advice or our concerns. She gets really defensive and says 'You dont have a child with autism and you know nothing about it, so you have no place to tell me what to do' . None of us are telling her what to do, we are just wanting to help. Fact of the matter is, this is affecting our families too. This is dividing our family big time

 
Old 03-25-2010, 12:06 AM   #5
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

I don't think you are judging at all. I think you are trying to help. Why don't you just ask your sister in law if they have thought about having your nephew seen by a child neurologist for help with the temper problems.

Say you read about the suggestion on a message board. And btw the other poster's suggestion about melatonin is very good. We used that for years when my son had such a difficult time when he was younger with sleep issues.

 
Old 03-25-2010, 04:35 PM   #6
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

Thank you everyone! I have tried to interject little pieces of advice here and there... But she just does not want to hear it. She instead just makes excuses as to why they cant come visit or whatever. Besides him going to school, they very rarely leave the house. I honestly think that it is going to get to the point that she home schools him and they neve leave the house. Funny thing though, when he is having behaviors and his mom or dad tell him to stop, he looks at them and screams at the top of his lungs, but when someone else (me or one of my siblings or gma or gpa) asks him to stop or diverts his attention, he doesnt scream at all. He quits what he is doing and behaves.. Why is that?

 
Old 03-25-2010, 05:17 PM   #7
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

hmmm, if he doesn't scream when others tell him not to, then he probably knows that he's loved and that with his parents he can get away with this. this would lead me to think that this is behavioral and that something like ABA (applied behavioral analysis) therapy would do wonders for him. you might casually mention to your sister that you have heard that ABA therapy is very good for young children for these kind of behaviors.

i know families who have brought ABA therapists in and the results have been excellent. if she's interested, i can do a computor search and get the referral information to you. in the past, the ABA psychologists would come from different states, stay with the family for two days, do the evaluation and make the reccomendations for therapy. it's not always the right therapy for a child with autism, but in your nephew's case with what you just described, i think they would be very happy with the results.

 
Old 03-25-2010, 06:40 PM   #8
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

SoulySue, I have to agree w/Gaelfish, that eliminating casein and gluten are extremely important. And dyes.
My son is 13 and cheats on his diet like you wouldn't believe. I tell him he is poisoning his body but he is just too impulsive to "get it." I have repeatedly told him that he won't have to take the Adderall he's on if he could learn to control his impulses but he won't care until he's middle aged, I'm sure.
At first we tried to go totally natural, but his hands moved so fast I could not take him to a friend's house, a party, anywhere because he would shove any and every food into his mouth. You'd have thought he was a POW.

Anyway, yes, I have experienced those terrible rages, glassy eyed and all. It is terrifying. It's like they're possessed.

In regard to discipline, yes, of course you can discipline (aka teach) an Aspie/autistic but not while he's raging. You have to wait for him to calm down (my son's longest rage was about 4 hrs) and afterward, while the episode is still fresh in his mind, but not sending him over the edge, calmly talk to him about what happened and what he can do to avoid it. He's way too young to come up w/his own ideas, so just suggest a couple of obviously good ideas so it's a win-win situation.

These kids need consistency and repetition. The things that my daughter learned by osmosis, took my son yrs and yrs to learn. It is so disheartening, but eventually, they come around. Many will never understand or empathize, but they can still learn which behaviors are expected and how to behave in society.
At the very least, I expect to teach my son how to stay out of jail, LOL!

Is your sister open to suggestions? Is she coachable? If so, you're lucky--you can help her and show her that she can and should take the responsiblity of disciplining her son. To not do so implies that he has no brain. It's insulting. These kids are smart, believe me. Unfortunately, they're usually smart in regard to things we don't want them to do! LOL! But eventually, as adults, they learn coping and adaptive skills, all which begin in childhood.

Your sister and her family must have a serious routine, especially at night and at bedtime. I have to admit, my husband and I were reluctant to change our ways, because we felt we shouldn't have to tailor our lives to our son's behaviors. But then we realized what would happen if we didn't tailor our lives toward his needs--meltdowns that would make Mother Teresa have a nervous breakdown.

Aspies need strict sleep schedules. I have to say that sleep is probably more important that the wheat issue, although they're pretty darn close. If my son has wheat AND goes without sleep, AND plays unlimited hrs of video games, it's like inviting Attila the Hun into the house.

He is now on a couple of meds, and it really, really helps. We ended up putting him on Adderall and THEN cutting out the foods, because only then could he slow down his brain and hands enough to have him sit down and listen to us explain that we were not ever going to have wheat in the house again, that he could never have ice cream, and never have red dye.
Of course, now that he's older, he can have a tiny bit, as it is cumulative, and he is learning, but I can guarantee you that when he's 18 and out of the house, he will go on a binge more than once and regret it.

As long as your sister keeps her head in the sand, there's not a whole lot you can do except hand her the biz card of a good therapist who can deal w/Aspies.

Best of luck!
__________________
Married 31 yrs, 18-yr-old NT daug in coll, 13-yr-old Aspie, adopted 2 days old. Poss mood dis. LD but only 1 gr behind; priv school; wheat/gluten-free, milk-free diet; Adderall, Imiprimine, Clonidine.

Last edited by TerryJ2; 03-25-2010 at 06:43 PM. Reason: typo

 
Old 03-25-2010, 06:42 PM   #9
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

I just saw Mira's note. ABA is a great idea.
Maybe you (SoulySue) can offer to babysit one night while your sister goes to a movie so she doesn't lose her mind? Then she will be more receptive to suggestions. Just a thought ...
__________________
Married 31 yrs, 18-yr-old NT daug in coll, 13-yr-old Aspie, adopted 2 days old. Poss mood dis. LD but only 1 gr behind; priv school; wheat/gluten-free, milk-free diet; Adderall, Imiprimine, Clonidine.

Last edited by TerryJ2; 03-25-2010 at 06:45 PM.

 
Old 03-25-2010, 08:48 PM   #10
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

Gosh, these are all very good ideas and suggestions! Problem, sister in law is NOT willing to give him medication of any kind to help with anything. She has already said that she will not medicate him. I personally think this is a huge mistake because it sounds like there are meds he can take to help him and right now he is so out of control and it is very apparent that this is going to continue on forever because what she is doing is not working. Sometimes I think that it is a pride thing with her. She wants to "cure" him all by herself. I think this is very unfair to my nephew because he deserves to live a "normal" life - please dont take that out of context. I too believe that consistency and repetition and routine are very important to him. BUT, isnt that really important for every child, autistic or not? My nephews routine at night, brush teeth, read and go to sleep. For whatever reason, and Im not sure why, but they have not been doing this at night. Sister says its because Nephew is so bad during the evening that he is put to be and cant read (as a punishment). He sleeps until about 130 am wakes up and rages until 330/4 about wanting to brush his teeth, they take him in the bathroom and he rages about wanting to go to bed, they take him in his bed and he rages about wanting to read, so on and so on, and then finally falls asleep in front of the tv watching cartoons. then sleeps through school (they dont want to wake up the Bear (sisters comparision - not mine), so he has missed about 2 - 3 weeks of school so far, then wakes up late morning early afternoon and rages about it being light out and not dark. it just goes on and on. I honestly dont think that they are equiped to deal with him by themselves, but dont want to ask for help because they think that will make them appear weak. It is so frustrating for me to watch. I would offer to watch him more and help out but they live 4 hours aways so that really isnt an option. I have tried to give advice to them millions of times that the is when I get ripped a new one because I dont have a child with autism, so I shouldnt judge them and tell them how to parent. its a vicious cycle. We are expected to just suck it up and live with it, get togethers are just mass chaos and by the time you leave you dont know what hit you. I just cant get out of my mind, him pushing my 1 yr old nephew into the corner of the wall and the 1 yr old having to get 10 stiches in his forehead, and the only thing that was done, was sister said "***, that was not nice and that is not okay to do to someone"... I was in absolute awe. I could not believe that is all that happened for discipline. My other siblings are afraid to have him around the rest of the kids. Sorry that last part was just me venting. Really, thank you for all of your helpful hints.. now if I could just get sister on board.. maybe i will send her an anonymous letter..

 
Old 03-25-2010, 10:24 PM   #11
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

Gosh, that's so sad and awful about the baby being pushed into a wall and needing 10 stitches and your sister blowing it off. That's so wrong and especially since this could happen again you sister has an obligation to do something about his to protect the baby. I hate to tell you this but if she's not getting the boy the help he needs and the baby is getting hurt, that could be child neglect.

Your nephew with autism needs help and maybe you can approach it from the standpoint of how he hurt the baby and that if they show up at the ER again, the Drs. will have to file a child abuse form and this is the truth if they are not doing something to help the situation. I know you don't want to be so strong, but think of it as helping your nephew and the baby, the poor little thing. She needs to get medication for the boy and behavior therapy.

I'm not telling you to call Children's Services but I can tell you that with a baby in the house who has already gotten so injured, it is something to consider if your sister refuses to get help. I feel for this family but it's not fair to the 4 year old and the other children for them not to do whatever they can to keep their other children safe.

Last edited by Mira11; 03-25-2010 at 10:24 PM.

 
Old 04-04-2010, 12:32 AM   #12
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Re: frantic temper tantrums

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoulySue View Post
My nephew is 4 1/2. He was diagnosed with ODD w/ Asbergers a few years ago. I am not around him very much but when I am I see that there is no discipline from his parents. he can push and hit the younger kids and all they say is '**** dont do that, its not nice'. There are no consequences for his actions. I have questioned this and I am told that he doesnt understand what discipline is, so it isnt worth our time to try. I especially questioned this when he pushed his cousin down and made him hit his head and he needed stiches. I have also witnessed an almost psychotic temper tantrum in the middle of the night and he was 100% inconsolible (sp) for almost 2 hours. Screaming at the top of his lungs. It was like he was in a trance. It was really scary. has anyone experienced anything like this? Is there something else going on? He goes to pre K and therapy. but he has been missing school and therapy because he is up all night throwing a tantrum and when he finally falls asleep they dont want to wake him. Then when he wakes up in the morning its the same thing for another 2 hours until he finally calms down, then it is 'give in to **** all day so we dont make him mad..'.. The parents are going to have a long haul if they dont figure something out. he is only 4 1/2.. Please help
Children with developmental disorders are difficult to discipline, but disciplined they must be or they will never be able to attend school or have any type of normal interaction with other human beings. Other parents are not going to tolerate your nephew splitting their child's head open, and your brother and sister in law will have their hands full when their child grows older and turns his aggression toward them.

I strongly suggest consulting with a psychologist and neurologist as others here have suggested. Your brother and sister in law need help with parenting and your nephew likely needs treatment. He may need a combination of medication and other behavioral therapies, and the parents definitely need parenting help if they are allowing a four year old, autistic or not, to do as he pleases.

Actually, children with autism, particularly Aspergers', can understand discipline very well.

Sounds like a job for the Super Nanny.

Rose

 
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