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Thread: How do you handle the social effects on YOU?

  1. #1
    LL2 is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Default How do you handle the social effects on YOU?

    Not to be narcissistic, but I am getting to the point where I am at a bit of a loss and I guess I just need to vent a little bit. I've always struggled a bit with social issues but had reached the point where I had a pretty good balance. That balance is steadily, however, going down the toilet. After a pretty good start to the school year socially, DS (who has pragmatic language issues and mild PDD-NOS) seems to be in self-destruct mode. He hits it off very well initially with kids (he's very verbal, active, etc.) and then, in what is becoming a crushingly familiar pattern, I can see them gradually start to pull away as his "stuff" starts to emerge - he becomes more overbearing, controlling, etc. He "best friend" the first several months of school, for example, will now barely speak to him - kids growing apart is one thing, but this relationship is now dripping with disdain.

    Just to be the frosting on the cake, a lot of the sentiments seem to get carried over into my interactions with the parents. Yesterday another boy and DS got into an argument about a wiffle bat DS was holding and when the other boy tried to pull it out of his hands, apparently DS shoved or hit him (I didn't see the actual contact, but I do believe that it happened). The other boy ran to his mother in hysterics, and she came over to me and said, "Timmy hit Noah and I have to say, this is the second time this had happened in the last several weeks," with this "if looks could kill" expression on her face and then left while I was dealing with DS. We used to be great friends with the parents of the aforementioned "best friend" and now they have basically cut off all contact.

    The boy that DS hit is often a real monster to DS, but of course, no one sees that - they just see DS hitting him which, of course, is unacceptable. But no matter how much I talk, model, reason, hover, etc., these patterns continue. It just makes me want to grab my kids after school and go hide in the house, but my kids are the type that desparately DESPARATELY need physical activity time and DD, who does not share DS's social issues, has a wonderful time.

    I hate this town. I just want to move and get away from all these people, but I know it would just end up being the same in the end.

  2. #2
    threesnugbugs Guest

    Default Hugs-I have just a moment this morning, but wanted to

    respond. This is the hardest part, how we think it reflects on us. I feel like crap most days and it bothers me to my core. I feel for you and wish I had answers. I'll try to get back to you later today.

  3. #3
    Reese14 is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Default I totally can understand how you feel....

    My older DS is like Timmy in some ways and it is heartbreaking to watch other kids really want to play with him and like him, and then for him to self destruct and be mean to them.

    My younger DS is too young to be diagnosed, but most likely has ADHD. The social unacceptance of him (which trickles down to me...I must be a bad parent if he acts like that, they all think) is really upsetting. I've joined playgrounds only to find they continued the following year, yet me and my child weren't included.

    I'll be completely honest, it hurts like heck to watch my children have negative interactions with others, then to have other parents isolate me as well. I do have a few friends who have children who do have some similar issues, so we try to stick together. Over the past year, I have also learned to let go of a lot and not let it bother me as much. I realized the stress of being around such critical people who don't take a moment to try to understand what it is like in my child or my shoes was wearing on me and beating me down emotionally. And it just wasn't worth it. We don't do as much now, but I am much happier now when I don't even try to make plans with the shallow people.

    I really have no advice, but can offer lots of sympathy because it really is so hard.

  4. #4
    Christine S Guest

    Default You have the choice here...

    You can be upset and hurt by the other parents. Or you could keep in mind that your child IS different and they just don't get it. Likely never will. They will also likely never know the kind of joy that WE, parents of SNK's, get to see. Joy with every little baby step they take, every little bit of progress they make. No one but my fellow SNK's here knew the joy I felt the first time I heard Tobin sing (or Ansley for that matter). Or the first time I saw my son actually STOP himself in the middle of a meltdown and walk away from the situation. Or...oh this is a big one...the joy at seeing Ansley (my nonverbal sensory averse, willfully mute and incredibly shy girl) go out in front of a crowd, squeeze her way between the big girls to CHEER for a football team. And she knew each and every cheer, moves and all. No one could understand why I was beaming from ear to ear each and every time she did this (and she did it many times).

    I also believe our kids have their own special unique talents that typical kids don't have. I guess it's like the blind child who develops an ultra sensitive sense of hearing. Our kids do have disabilities, but they compensate in other ways. And there are things they can do, feel, think, make, that are well above and beyond their years.

    I have really been hurt by other parents too. I've had parents refuse to take Tobin. But I've found there are really good people out there too. Tobin has a new friend he found in church. He sits with this lady every Sunday. He goes to her house to help her cook or clean. And you know what? They love each other. She has an older ds and this boy has taken T on as a younger sib. It's been such a blessing for everyone. I keep thanking her profusely for taking Tobin, but I'm finally understanding she really does love having him. So there are good people out there who CAN appreciate our kids. You've just got to find more of them and ignore the others.


    C

  5. #5
    pepperlc is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Default

    what a beautiful post. thank you for sharing

    karen

  6. #6
    Restless is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Default I can totally relate

    to what everyone has said so far.
    It is frustrating and painful to watch my DS, who has it all IMHO (good looks, self confidence, intelligence etc) completely screw things up socially - partially because he is immature, partially because of his personality (I recognize similar traits in his Aunt, who had a hard time getting along with people growing up). My DS just doesn't seem to catch the social cues that anyone else would pick up on and realize they are aggravating and becoming a PITA to others.
    I find myself getting exasperated a lot, and occaisionally giving in to a good cry. I've made some calls about "Social Skill Groups", however, those leads lead to dead ends.
    On the advice of 2 of his teachers (one from preschool disabled, the other from his regular kindergarten) - I give him as many opportunities as I can to be around other boys, and have to let the cards fall where they may - both teachers told me point blank that he may need to be pushed or punched to get the message. Sadly, as much as I would like to prevent this, I agree. I would love to put my Mommy Shield around him, but I can't be with him every minute of the day - he's going to have to be the kind of kid to learn the hard way. Even though I tell him things, and try to point out things he does and says, he just has me tuned out at this point.

    I don't know if anyone in my area does playdates- he has never been invited to anyone's home, and we haven't invited anyone (other than a couple of boys we've known forever). Last nite he told me that he would like a particular boy to come over, however, I don't see any interest in my son from this kid, and even less from his mother. I just can't even make the phone call - I'd rather not know if playdates are happening and we aren't included.

    I've said it before, and I'll say it again - being a Mommy sure looked easier when I wasn't one!

    (((Hugs)))

  7. #7
    KaylieS Guest

    Default {{hugs}} It's rough, I agree

    How do we handle it??? We come here and vent! Seriously, I don't know... I get really, really embarassed when dd does something mean. I wonder if I overpunish her b/c I know that people are watching.

    Girl scout outing #1 - 3/4 of the way thru a perfectly nice time, she grabs and twists another girl's arm b/c the girl was holding a branch that dd's friend wanted. The hurt girl starts crying and holding her arm. Yes, I about died. The other moms were really nice about it. I did discipline dd and all but I was really embarassed and wished like heck I had a "normal" child at that moment.

    I think people give me a bit more leeway b/c dd is younger than timmy (not by much, but she's almost 6 now, just in K (homeschooling).

    Also because of homeschooling I try to limit dd's friend interactions to supervised times (friend's house, girl scouts, dance, gymnastics, church, etc.)

    I think the other thing that is really hard is that those people who see our kids acting up don't also see them being wonderful, creative, friendly, loving,e tc. They only see the "monster". My mom even talks about how "mean" my dd is. Well, yes, she can be. What should I do about it mom? Beat her to a pulp? That ckind of criticism from my mom drives me nuts.

    My dd has so many talents, so many areas where she shines...that I hate for people to not like her just because she has self-control issues. And also she has come so far but they don't see that, do they? They see her talking mean or being mean, but they didn't see her at 2, hitting, kicking, spitting at everyone.

    And then the guilty part of me...when something happens and I automatically blame dd (and 99.9% of the time, I'm right)...and then I start to worry that she's the "bad seed". I must be a horrible person to think that way, right?

    Over christmas break, my nephew's hamster died. Somehow, dh and I knew dd was at fault. Sadly, we were right. It was VERY hard to get it out of dd though...Finally I got her to admit that yes, maybe her and nephew did give it a little bath. Well, turns out not the nephew, just her, although maybe or maybe not he knew about it. AT that moment, I was terrified that she had drowned it on purpose. She wanted to go somewhere w/her cousins that day and I wouldn't let her and she was mad...so I was afraid she had killed the hamster in retribution. Now what kind of child does that? AAnd what kind of mother thinks that????

    We have concluded though that it truly was an accident - that it was stinky and she wanted to bathe it. But the lack of emotion from her was scary. I think it was more due to scared of getting into trouble than anything else. at teh time, though, I didn't know.

    Anyway, I don't know what to tell you except I know how you feel. We want our kids to be liked so much...and yes, it is hard when we feel like we are being blamed. That's what I get from my m om - like she thinks I am a bad mother. And I hate it when I feel like other adults don't like my dd - they only see her bad behavior and don't look for the good stuff.

    Well, time to go to girl scouts, wish me luck for a good evening!!!!!!

    Kaylie

  8. #8
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    ITA....

    We have withdrawn from society to an extent. We focus on our friends, who know we have two SNKs. Dd's soccer coach and the parents on her team know her issues...same with ds' soccer team. We did have to pull ds out of gymnastics b/c he was uncontrollable there. Win some/lose some.

    We do have great joys like the adorable pics of ds participating in his last soccer game in the fall after he refused to play all season, even at practice and he scored one of the goals. We also silently "enjoy" when the other 11-year-olds on dd's team get in trouble for being nasty and back-talking with each other and the coach. We always know that dd was not involved b/c she rarely talks to anyone but us.

    HUGS to you,
    Charlotte

  9. #9
    mickey2's Avatar
    mickey2 is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    i ditto what others said but will share what i do as well.

    we hang out with moms of 2,3,4yo girls mostly. for some reason, ds gets along best with that age and gender. we also have a few moms with boys age 7-9 that love mckevor and hang with him too. the moms all know that mck has issues and why i request playdates from them. their kids love mck and they get a break. we have similar parenting styles too.

    sadly, he just doesnt get it when it comes to his 4-6yo boys. one cant explain it, you jsut have to witness it. so i rarely try to do a "planned playdate" with that age/gender.
    i see others his age forming tight bonds of friendship but mck isnt there. hes still socially clueless.

    i also make a point to have friends of my own (w or w/o) kids to do things with. such as movies (even if dvd on home tv for money saving), having a cup of coffee/tea somewhere, etc. i also try to attend at least 2 support group meetings a month for the various issues we deal with.

    another thing, i keep 1 day per week for a FREE day, ie no therapy or hidden agenda. just a fun free day that we pretend to be normal. sometimes i meet my "normal MOPS moms" at parks, do playdates, go hiking, etc. my real friends know that i crave and need this day to keep sane and rarely turn me down.


    we are looking into a home social skills program with some friends and neighbors kids. i have the books etc to implement it but havent yet. i guess its my way of still ckinging onto hope that he wont have my social skills issues.

    as far as helping him cope...we focus on teaching him "networking" skills vs fake friendship skills that jsut upset him. networking rules are finite and make sense to him so we are seeing progress there. of course, a glass of wine always helps!! hugs

  10. #10
    anniemc2000 is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Default Hugs

    This is my first year with both girls in school, so I have no great advice, but I just wanted to give you hugs.
    Ann

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