Public outings

by Kristine Petersen
(Florida)



My son has SPD (sensory processing disorder) so he gets overstimulated in large crowds or noisy places. It is very hard to go out to eat, walk through the mall, or basically do anything outside of the home. I have learned the best way to manage his behavior when we go for trips to the supermarket, ect, where I can strap him into a cart and bring along a portable dvd player to keep him entertained while I try my best to finish the shopping quickly.

However, that doesn't last too long, and I am finding myself declining when friends ask me to bring him along to go out to lunch, take a stroll down to the beach, or just about anything these days. I am getting into the pattern of realizing it is easier to leave him at home than to take him when I go out, and I am feeling really guilty. He likes to go out, and experience new things, he just has a tough time adjusting when we are out, and I find myself getting frustrated, exhausted, and discouraged from taking him out again.

He is 6, and really getting too big for a stroller. I have a newborn, so it is really tough to manage his behavior when I go out alone while I have baby in tow. He is a runner, and will take off running into the street, or down the aisle, and it's tough for me to keep up with him.

Any advice on how I can get him to learn to cope and behave better in public?

I don't want to keep leaving him at home, b/c he will never learn if he is not exposed to the situation. But its very unpleasant for me when I take him along, and I have a hard time getting anything done.

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Sep 01, 2009
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Ankle Weights
by: Anonymous

My son uses ankle weights to help ground him. Depending on your sons sensory needs, this could help.

Sep 01, 2009
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Outings
by: Angie

I so----understand what you are dealing with. On on hand you don't want to miss out on outing and you don't want him to miss out on a new thing. On the other hand- it is very stressful taking him out and sometimes not worth that stress.

My son has an ipod that I have put movies on and that has helped but the best investment that I have had is and Nintendo DS. You would think maybe that he would zone out in the game but that is so not what my son does. He plays a game but will interact and talk while he is doing it. I think that the game relieves some of his anxiety.

If you ever need to talk my email is
ngldickey@yahoo.com


Sep 01, 2009
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by: Anonymous

I know he can't learn to not have SPD, and I am not looking to cure him of it b/c I know we can't do that. I am seeking advice on how he can COPE better when we are out so he can enjoy the world on HIS terms. Keeping him in the house and away from society will only make him less social. I want him to experience new places and things, and help him to be comfortable while doing it.

Sep 01, 2009
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Learning Not to Have SPD?
by: Anonymous

I don't think you should not "leave him home" because he can't "learn" to not be SPD. Let him be most comfortable at home.

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