Advice for safety during violent outbursts PLEASE??
Hello Everyone, thank you for taking the time to read my post. I am in DESPERATE need of some advice
I currently work with a young man whom is 17 years old, and built rather large. He has autism, is non-verbal, and cannot accurately communicate his wants, needs or feelings. He also has a seizure disorder. I have been working with him and his family for close to 2 years now and we have a wonderful bond!
He has always been a joy to work with, allthough does have a tendency to have occasional violent outbursts. Typically,these last for a very brief period and normally consist of hitting himself hard on the side of the head 3-4 times in rapid succession while pursing his lips tightly and biting his hand or hitting me on my forearm 3-4 times and at times grabbing my hand and attempting to bite me. Once, he did rush his father and proceeded to push him and try to bite him. We guided him to his room and held the door shut and he calmed in about 3 minutes. They have always seemed to be manageable for the most part, up until today....
He had early release from school, so I brought him out for lunch and we went shopping at a few places afterward. When we returned home, I parked the car in the driveway, got out and went to open his door for him. When I did this, he sat in the seat and stared at the floor for about 15-20 seconds, which I found odd because he usually gets right out when I open his door. When he got out and we headed up the stairs to the porch, he began to hit himself on the side of his head. I knew that he was becoming escalated and tried to unlock the door as fast as I could so that we could get insode, where he could have some quiet time in his room. When I went to put the key into the lock, he grabbed ahold of my hair and violently pulled me away from the door, and began to pummel me on both sides of my head with a great deal of force. I attempted to look up at him and quietly told him to "calm down," But this definitely did not work. He then grabbed at my shirt collar, pulled it down as hard as he could and proceeded to sink his teeth into the top of my head. When I put my arms up to protect my head, he began to pummel me with a rapid succession of punches and bit one of the tops of my arms so hard that he broke through the skin, and bit as hard as he could. When I fended him off, he pretty much repeated this pattern of pummeling, pulling and biting for about 2-3 minutes, despite my requests for him to please stop. When I was able to make eye contact with him, his face seemed to have "changed," and it was extremely obvious that he was beyond any reasoning or calming down.
I was finally able to make it off the porch and ran to my car. He remained on the porch, hitting himself very violently on his head. I took my cellphone out to call his mother, and he sprinted off his porch, rushed me and began the assault down in the driveway.I opened up the door to the car and pleaded with him to get in so we could go for a ride, but he just repeatedly came at me. This lasted for about another 4 minutes, and when he finally got in the car(which I believe was done because he finally de-escalated), clumps of my hair were all over the driveway, I had 7 full-sized bitemarks on my arms, several bitemarks all over my head and my face was very swollen. Needless to say, I was extremely shaken and upset.
When his mom came home, she was extremely apologetic and told me that he had been this violent withher before. She theorized that the outbursts such as the one he had just had were more of a neurological issue, but she was not sure.She told me the next time this happened, if we were outside, that I was to run away from him at any costs.
I guess my largest need right now is some advice about what can be done if this happens again. I honestly feel extremely traumatized right now and am petrified that this will happen again in a public setting, where he could take these aggressions out on random people. As I said before, this type of incident has never happened before and he seemed like he had completely forgotten about it as soon as he calmed down. However, the hard part about this is that others(including myself) will not forget such a brutal attack, ever. How can I better deal with situations like this in a way that keeps him and me as safe as possible?