Acceptance

Finally a post that’s not all about me feeling sorry for myself. In fact, I plan to gloat a bit, LOL.

My family has always tried to be supportive of our struggles with Reed. They are sympathetic, but I don’t think they really “got it” if you know what I mean (and I’m betting you do). Because grandparents often see a different side of our kids, they often have a false impression of what parenting these kids entails. Reed has always been good as gold at Papa and Nana’s. They never have any problems with him when he comes to visit. Because of this, Nana is always ready to offer me lots of parenting advice. Things like “You just have to be consistent.” and “Make him responsible for cleaning up after himself and he won’t want to make such a mess anymore.” Um, yeah. ‘Cause I obviously never thought of trying that.

After today, however, I think she finally gets it.

As I mentioned a few posts ago, Reed loves my grandparents and was disappointed when his spring break visit was canceled. So, now that Papa is feeling better, Reed was invited to spend the weekend. After a difficult evening with him on Thursday, in which I threatened to not let him go at all if he couldn’t get himself under control, he finally settled down and went to sleep. He had a great day at school on Friday, and I was optimistic that the worst of this week was behind us. I dropped him off after OT, with dire warnings of what would happen if I got any unsatisfactory reports. We ran through our daily script of “How are you going to behave?” “Good.” “How good?” “The best kid ever.” We run through this script every morning before school, and it seemed appropriate under the circumstances. Owen and I headed home for a peaceful night. And there was much rejoicing. I got a call a few hours later that I had somehow forgotten to pack his pajamas. Reed had begged her to take him home to get them, but she convinced him to wear some sweats. She further appeased him by calling me and asking that I drop some pj’s off the next day. I assured him I would bring them over the following day, and he was happy. Crisis averted. Problem solved. He went to bed without a problem. In fact, he was pretty good most of the day, only having a brief problem when asked to clean up his toys just before I dropped by with the pajamas. I had a talk with him, and reminded him that if he couldn’t listen to Papa and Nana, he would be coming home. He promised me he would be on his best behavior, and I left, not wanting to infringe on his special weekend any more than necessary. Then at dinnertime, I got another call from Nana. She sounded like she might burst into tears at any moment. She informed me that she would be bringing him home as soon as she gathered up his things. I apologized profusely for his behavior, but tried to point out that this is just how he gets some days, and there’s not much you can do about it. 45 minutes later, he came bounding into the house. Turns out that she had asked him to help clean up some toys so he could get a bath in before bedtime. He refused, and when she insisted, he started throwing things and screaming. He threw a shoe, which knocked a painting off the wall. While she was retrieving the painting, he ran into the kitchen, and swiped everything off the table. By some miracle, her favorite crystal vase didn’t break, but it could have been bad. That was the final straw. She told him that he would have to go home, and he laughed in her face and refused to put on his shoes. That’s when she called me.

I know it’s really petty of me, but part of me is laughing inside. For all her advise, for all her opinions that there was something I wasn’t doing right, she got to see one of his nuclear-grade meltdowns first-hand. I feel some subliminal “I told you so”s are in order.

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3 Comments

  1. May 1, 2006 at 1:19 pm

    I’m sorry, but I have to laugh. I have to laugh at how people pass judgement without having the faintest clue about what they are talking about. I can SO relate too! Here’s a quickie. Gabe’s grandparents believe I am a nut case, I just know it by the looks they give. (They soooooo underestimate things that I am surprised that my husband is alive)Anyways, Gabe and Boo spent a week with them last summer without SD and I. In every picture of where they went, Gabe had on a child harness. A child harness! They would always roll their eyes when I insisted on bringing a stroller where we went. He was everywhere from 1 -2 years old! Now they know why! I smiled, not because I liked seeing GAbe in a harness (No Way!), but at the fact that they HAD to admit defeat and accept the idea that his behavior was NOT all in my head :o)

    Kristin
    I hope Reed’s grandma can look past this one instance and have him over again. Maybe she will ask YOUR advice about how to make it go more smoothly next time!

  2. supermom said,

    May 1, 2006 at 5:18 pm

    You know what I love….when people that don’t have autistic kids try to tell me what to do. I’m pretty blunt, I tell them that they could never know what I go through if their kids are “normal”. I had 6 kids before him and trust me….it’s not the SAME!

    He has sensory problems, a significant speech delay and a high tolerance for pain (he’s 4 and already broke his leg). I lie not when I say….
    My life never has a dull moment!

    Doesn’t it feel good to know that someone validates your feelings and KNOWS exactly what you are going through? I love the autism ring and mommy bloggers. I think we help each other out just by writing the truth…it’s like a support group across the miles…

  3. June 17, 2006 at 12:59 am

    I love when “they” finally get it and sometimes even then, they still really don’t but, atleast we’re all closer…right?


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