Anger and SPD

by Maggie
(Knoxville)

My son just turned 5. He has been in OT for 1.5 years. He is quite a ham, on some days, and easy to get along with, playing interactively with older sister. But some mornings he wakes up and my husband and I both know it is going to be bad. He is whiney, goes into full blown tantrums, hits his sisters and gets physical with Mom and Dad, says things to his older sister to scare her, becomes disobedient and mouthy to his parents. When I look at the list for ODD, I think well that pretty much sums it up, except that he turns back into an angel the next day. We know a few things for certain, Astronaut Training and Brushing technique if done early in the morning can turn his behavior around and we know if we drop doing it for a few days then we are destined to see negative behaviors. If he has even a little sugar, it sends him over the edge and if we play music and he starts dancing and spinning, then he will get aggressive. If he starts becoming aggressive or impulsive and touching his sister's face then I have him carry a half gallon jug of water to water the blueberry bushes in our back yard and it seems to bring him back again for a while.


My question to you all is this, Can SPD be so intense that is makes your whole personality change overnight? I am really guessing that his good days may just be a result of us doing the astronaut training, and getting adequate sleep but for the life of me I can't pinpoint it enough to replicate every day.

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Aug 28, 2013
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You're telling my story!!
by: Frustrated in Colorado

Wow, your situation is almost identical to mine, even down to the older sister issue. Your entire post is relatable to how my son is and I feel your pain and frustration. This has been going on for about 10 months with my now six year old son (he turned 6 in July). Even at the end of Kindergarten, things weren't too bad, not even so much as to raise him to a Tier 2 on the level of attention needed in the school system. Things changed dramatically over the summer and now I wait for a call every day telling me that he is out of control and I need to pick him up. I get that call a lot, or just wanting me to talk to him and try to get him to calm down over the phone. We did behavior therapy for 5 or 6 months and he flew through that program and did great! The following Monday, he got kicked out of Summer School on the first day because he got violent with other kids. We have been doing OT for about three months and are just starting regular therapy and have a medication evaluation in about a week. I know he has major anxiety issues and ADHD that make it hard for him to slow down so that he can process things better. Every day is trial and error to see what will work with him that day. It's really hit or miss.

The question I have (sorry this turned out to be so long) is what is the astronaut therapy you mentioned in your post. I think I know what you're talking about, but wanted to clarify it. Thank you so much and I wish you luck on your journey. You're in my prayers!

Jul 10, 2013
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Angry Girl
by: Anonymous

I have an 8 year old with SPD who just gets so angry and uncooperative. She doesn't want to get out of bed, get ready for school (she wants me to dress her!) and any request leads to her shouting and saying "you can't make me".... She loves to read and refuses to put her book down.... reading the whole walk to school..... When I remind her that her teacher will want her to put the book down and that she needs to do so without grunting or shouting ... she shouts at me that she will. I end up sending a quick email to her teacher, to warn her that my daughter had not woken up in a good mood and will spend the whole day worrying and waiting for a phone call from school that their has been an unsuitable behaviour. Very challenging.

Jul 05, 2013
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Same issues with our son
by: Anonymous

My son is 2.5 and we have similar issues. The good days are great, he is smart, funny, fun and just a great kid to be around.

The bad days, not so fun. We can tell too when he wakes up crabby that it will be a bad day too. He never hits his older sister but he will hit, push, poke his younger brother. He will cry or tantrum over the smallest things and sometimes things you have no control over (He bit his cracker and it broke, his big car wont fit in the dump truck, etc) and it is a day long of stress for everyone around. When he is in one of those moods it will be hard to go anywhere or do anything but life must go on for the other kids. It is so hard. I have started looking to see if there could be something else going on- Aspbergers, Autism, etc. I just dont know. Wish I had answers too. It is so sad to see him like this as he is miserable. I know it doesnt have to be this way because he has such great days too. I do not know what triggers it (sometimes if he wakes up too early) but other times I have no clue. We have been in OT for a year and we have not seen much progress. Going around a bunch of people like parties, restaurants, DisneyLand are very hard on him and the whole family. We tried brushing which did not seem to help. I will look into the astronaut method and see what I can find, maybe that will help??

Wish I could give you answers as we are at a loss too. Sometimes removing him from others, going into his room and reading a book can sometimes get him in a better mood. Sometimes he will fight that too.

Our OT says he has mild SPD but this behavior doesnt seem mild to me at all or normal. I never see other kids (family, friends) act like this on a regular basis. The family that is close to us already knows and asks when they get there "How is he doing, is he having a good day" and we all know who they are talking about because our other son never has those kinds of days. Its really sad. I am struggling with having an OT that is not the most helpful, trying to get another one (the last one we had was amazing but moved) now we are trying to find other ways to help him.

Good Luck.

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