Friday, 8 February 2013

Sound of a slap..

I've gone my whole life without getting into a fight. No physical rough ups, no cat fights, no bitch slaps. I've survived till the grand old age of 34 without experiencing the sting of a slap.

When it finally came I didn't expect it to be my 4 year old son who delivered the blow. He proper lamped me. The sound reverberated round the room as his palm met my cheek when I tried to dress him. It couldn't have landed more perfectly to produce the biggest pain response. I expected when that moment came I would scream out, lash out but I didn't.

I was stunned. Stunned into silence. I looked him in the eye and evaluated what had just happened. I looked him deep in the eye to see where my beautiful little boy was in that moment.  He stared at me back, like he too was in shock. He didn't understand what he'd just done and you could see the confusion in his eyes. You could also see the realisation that he did that and I stopped doing what he was objecting to. I quietly told him he had hurt mommy and that wasn't nice. Mommy loved him so please don't hurt mommy again. I then carried on trying to dress him and he relapsed into screaming and grunting again.

As we drove him to school..with him screaming the whole time I thought about what had happened. Does this mean he will be violent in the future? Does this mean he will get worse? Surely he would have been far more aggressive in the past? Does this mean he's going to be a school refuser? How much will he hurt me? What's going to happen when he's 15? I know I shouldn't scrape through the whys and wherefores of the situation but you can't help it....

I said to hubby as we drove away "how does it make you feel?" I looked over and he was covered in scratches. He replied, "I wonder what it's going to be like when he's 15..I try not to think about the
future because I think I'm going to be a carer instead of a dad."

It's so so sad to see your little baby boy lose it so badly but to be the brunt of his frustration in such a violent out burst. Only now, 2hours later has my cheek stopped throbbing but my thoughts are still racing. Is what lee says true? Will we still be parents in the future or will our life start to be about defending ourselves and fighting to get Cody to conform? I don't want my baby to be like this. I don't want to be hurt by my children. You know they can't help it but nobody would want to be hurt by the hand they love. Nobody would want to feel pain inflicted on them by a child they bought into the world to cherish and care for.

I know other parents get it far worse and I know that muggle mommies get walloped too but it's the feeling that life will continue to involve slaps, kicks and scratches that hurts more than my cheek.

I wanted to add to this before I publish it. Its the following day now...this morning I got slapped again and so did lee and tonight we've had more meltdowns and mugs thrown down the stairs to be smashed. No one tells you what to do? No one can make a sturdy suggestion..ignore it, don't ignore it, hit back, don't hit back, tell him off, don't tell him off...we're hopeless and helpless to stop what's inevitably going to happen. But as we blocked him into our room to stop the smashing of mugs he finally dropped to the floor in despair. He was drained. He was confused and he was frightened of what was happening to him. He can't tell us what's going on in that tiny required brain of his but whatever it is he doesn't want it to happen either and I think.."what if he's trapped in there?" 

What if somewhere in that happy detached world of his something has connected and behind the autism is a little boy screaming to get out? What if that's what's happening? As he finally crawled up from the floor into his daddy's arms he looked bewildered and scared. I can't bare the idea that my boy, my muggle son is caught in a cage of autism and I don't have the keys...I'd rather think he had no awareness at all than be terrified of himself.



Liz Madge said...

Rachel attacked me when we were on holiday, she clawed my neck during a meltdown, I cuddled her afterwards (you're right, no-one has a quick fix answer) and she looked at my bleeding neck and said "What happened" I told her that she'd done it, quite calmly, and she looked at her hand and said, "Naughty, naughty hand" - she had completely disassociated herself from her actions. Scarey!!!

Oya's Daughter said...

This is a very difficult situation to be in and there is a lot of conflicting advice. The time when my son was between 2-5 was terrible and I got a lot of abuse. It does happen, whether some people in the ASD community want to admit it or not, and yes, the "what happens when he's 15?" came up repeatedly as I had to keep insisting to the LA that I would not be able to control a raging teenager.

Breathe through. This is the tough time. I know it's hard but I would just put my son in a room with things he could throw around and then sit against the door until he was done. Then, once he had exhausted himself, I dug in deep and put on a smile as if nothing had happened because, to my son, that was true. He was done, and it was as if someone else had done it, so he now wanted a hug and a biscuit and to talk about something else. It's really hard to shake off the fact your kid has just pummelled you, but for us it was vital otherwise he'd just wind himself up again. "Think about what you've done" is IMO the WORST advice ever. I don't think they can. The guilt they feel means they just disassociate.

What I then did is insisted on getting my son into a special school which could deal with the reasons beneath the behaviour, because it wasn't the behaviour itself which was the problem and it took...well, a long time to convince anyone. But now I can say my son rarely hits and attacks anymore. Still gets angry, still yells, sure. But nothing like he was.

Breathe, dig deep. Endure.

Anonymous said...

my son too was like this as a young child and i spent many anight crying myself to sleep scared for him and what the future held but also scared for me and how i could find the strength to cope .my son is now 15 and almost 6ft tall and although we still have melt downs hes discovered his own ways to cope with them . i know he could do me a lot of damage if he wanted to because of his strength and size but im pleased to say hes grown into a very loving and gentle giant that still likes to come to me for cuddles every night .im so glad i had the support from friends and family that gave me the courage i needed to give him the love and support he needed . I wouldnt change him for the world and can see a bright light at the end of a very dark tunnel . all my thoughts are with you . x

mama said...

thank you so much everyone. its very comforting to know that because its happening now doesnt mean it will always be this way x

Looking for Blue Sky said...

My son is 11 now and still has meltdowns and I don't cope very well with them, but he stops short of attacking me now, after I followed through with a threat to lock all his consoles and his laptop in the shed for a week. So my child has had to learn new ways of coping with frustration, and most of the time it works, at home anyway x

lynne mckeag said...

My son used to bite me every place possible when he was younger his psychologist commented on this at one meeting. He never physically slapped ar kicked me but he did this to his brother and dad nearly ever time they went near him. We always said to his elder brother don't hit him back but this changed as he got older and more violent with him then he was allowed a gentle shove back or a small tap on the behind. He did eventually grow out of the slapping and biting when he was about 10. He is now 17yrs old and 6'2" tall and stands way above me. I don't think i could handle him if he were to attack me now and thank goodness he has never shown any signs of being violent to family members in the last 3 or 4 yrs but has gotten into trouble at school for agressive behaviour to people who were tormenting him and calling him names. He was excluded for a week after one of these episodes and i complained bitterly about this and it was lifted and removed from his record.The only thing i can say is he is still the same wee boy that he was before he slapped and scratched and you have to try to remember this after the incident. Please take care of yourself and try to stay safe x

Anonymous said...

MY son does this quiet often he will be 5 soon, and trying to control the situation is the hardest, im trying to explain to him when he gets that arghhhhhhhh feeling he has to reach for a cushion and he can punch the hell out of that i dont mind x We are getting there and seems to help sometimes x

mama said...

I do wish professionals would be more forthcoming with help but like everything else, we'll do it on our own!

Bright Side of Life said...

Ask us parents for guidance. Read what we have to say and then do what you think will work for your family. Right at this very minute I would say that your boy needs some sensory integration big time! xx

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