This post from the Porter family is spot on as Christine put over at Welcome to My Brain.
I decided to linky-dinky-do these because they were right in line with what I was preparing to gab about.
Little Miss had herself a public rage yesterday, first time since Sept that we have had a public rage. Which is kind of interesting timing when you consider this article from The Bipolar Child newsletter.
Miss is attached/attaching to her family. She is most attached to Mom, no one can comfort her like Mom can. She also has an unhealthy need to be in control of Mom's attention. She is not secure that Mom will not go away, she knows Moms sometimes do go away and that her first Mom left her in a scary place and never came back.
Additionally she has learning issues and brain activity that is in harmony with FASD. Do I know for 100% sure that she had those exposures? No. Is it likely? Yes.
We know because of how she has responded positively to major psychiatric medications that her brain does not function chemically as it should. Through tracking we located very clear cycling that supports Bipolar Disorder.
We know from her behaviors that she is a child of trauma. She does not have verbal memory of the trauma because of how young she was at the time that the traumas occurred but all mental health professionals involved agree the trauma was significant.
So when I sit down and logically look at what this child has stacked against her it is amazing the progress that we have made together as a family. Some believed that she "may never" improve from her traumas and indeed she has, she has improved a lot.
Even after her public rage she now accepts that she was wrong that her behavior was unacceptable. Before she truly believed that she did what she had to and you deserved what you got. She understands that we love her even if she does rage.
So here's what happened. We were at our religious service yesterday and she did not want to be there. In the past several months she has started zoning out in the form of sleep when she wants to avoid something. Not always a bad thing for sure and much better than a rage. But this was 3:30 in the afternoon and if she sleeps then we know from experience that she will not sleep at night. We gently tried to direct her away from the sleep attempt and she was not having it. She kicked the seat in front of her and we knew right then it was go time. We tried to quietly calm her but she continued to hit Dad and we were certainly a bit of a distraction so she needed to be removed.
So we now have a almost 7 year old child hissing and spitting and kicking with high heel sandals (which did a number on Dad's leg) as Dad removes her from the building. Dad got her outside and tried to use the block and redirect technique but Miss was having none of it, she was out for blood and when she is at that point only being put in a hold will help her to regain control. One of the attendants came and got me at Dad's request and I went and stood with them and encouraged Miss to do her breathing, which she did. On lookers would peak their head around the corner to check on us and she would scream and hiss at them and they would tuck tail and run away. They got the point to stay away, we were around the side of the building where she could not see other people. She became calm with in a few minutes and I asked her if she felt in control and could Dad let go of her? With those wild animal type eyes she shook her head no she was not ready for him to let go. So he held her for another minute or so and I asked her again, she said yes. She wanted to go home and that's a tough call because in part it seems like a good idea to go home but the reality is that for a child like Miss they are always learning, we call it "changing the game". It seems to me to be a large contributor to why no specific consequence helps to change behavior in a child like this. Whatever "motivator" worked this time or seemed to probably won't work next time because they have the ability to no longer be interested in that motivator, nothing is more important than control because control means safety and so they will look to remain in control of the things that only they have control over. Also known, as I will poop my pants if I want to and you cannot control that.
With that said, if we go home this time because of a rage then we will see a public rage anytime Miss is ready to go home. Which means it is not wise to make that choice. Once she was back in control I said that I was going back inside and that she and Dad should join me as soon as they could. In part because she does not want to show this behavior to others she was embarrassed and afraid to go back inside the building. Dad was very patient and stood near by but moving toward the door back inside. 45 minutes later she and Dad returned.
I am considering making a sign in a similar fashion to a wet floor sign that says, "Child having a psychotic episode please do not disturb or offer candy." Some well meaning do gooder came around the corner with a bag of jellybeans. Really? Dad has this child in a hold to keep her and him safe and he has to say no jellybeans? Number 1 that is not appropriate even if it would have helped and number 2 those jellybeans would have become projectiles faster than the speed of light.
When it was all said and done life returned to our usual. Miss and Dad and I were able to talk about it at home. She was receptive to the talk and seemed to understand what was said. She got her shower with out any problems, ate dinner and slept well.