We are struggling at daycare. There is kicking, poking, hitting, rock throwing, yelling, running away and today we can add spitting to the list.
He has had some good days too since beginning there just over a month ago, but most days involve some kind of incident where another kid, or a teacher, gets hurt. The staff have been willing to chat with us and listen to us try to explain where things are coming from, whether they truly get it I’m not sure, but the fact that they are willing to try and that he hasn’t been kicked out yet is one that we are grateful for.
We have tried consequencing him at home after day care, we have tried a reward chart (he can colour a circle if he has a good day and once 5 circles are filled in I will buy him a new truck) but he hasn’t coloured a circle in almost a week (and quite frankly I pushed the first one to try and show him how it works and get him to buy in) and now we are trying to role play at home what to do if he gets mad.
We talk, we use our bag of tricks, we show him how disappointed/mad we are and we over-the-top-praise him…But nothing seems to be working.
He simply needs more support and somebody to help him in the moment regulate himself and walk him through social situations.
I’m getting tired, and starting to feel bad, for consequencing him for things that he can’t control right now…although there needs to a consequence for bad behaviour.
Without him having some extra support, it is starting to feel like he is being set up for failure each morning when I drop him off.
In time outs he’s started talking to himself saying repeating negative messages or just blabbing scenarios about ‘not good’ and ‘time out’. Today it was ‘Jonathan bad boy, Jonathan bad boy’ over and over. I interjected him explaining spitting was bad but he was good but I know it’s going to take much more than that to help him.
He wants to do good. He can repeat back what the rules are and is very proud when I praise him for knowing what to do (“What do you do if you get mad?” “Go tell TEACHER!!’) But in the moment, it’s just too much for this little fireball.
We are trying to get the day care extra support but it’s a bit of a process and not moving very quickly.
We fear that out of safety for the other kids they may ask us to leave soon before any supports get put in place.
He hasn’t pulled any of the above behaviours at home in a couple months…he’s got others for sure, but nothing so dramatic! I know he’s testing and pushing the boundaries and also not understanding and being understood with his language but there’s nothing we can do more to help him through the day unless we were right there beside him.
And this time next week, we get to throw kindergarten into the mix. More teachers, more kids, more testing, more not being understood.
Poor little dude!
It’s a tough pill to swallow letting him go each morning knowing that he can’t succeed unless by a stroke of luck. But what can we do but keep on reassuring, keep on trying new ideas, and keep on crossing our fingers and celebrating all the other goodness? Any suggestions would be welcome!
Maybe tomorrow will be the day it all turns around…maybe…