by Kristine Petersen
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.