Best way to deal with tantrums (12 year old girl).
Posted 02 July 2016 - 11:14 AM
Posted 02 July 2016 - 01:52 PM
I'm no expert but my daughter has Asperger's and she had terrible tantrums at the same age.
You don't say what other problems your daughter has, but mine has problems with social skills and communication and with hindsight, I think this was exactly what the problem was.
In the same way toddlers do this because they can't cope with feeling things aren't going their way and they can't voice their distress any other way than to throw a tantrum.
I think it is as equally scary for the person who finds themselves in an explosive rage they can't contain. The way I handled it was to try to make sure she was safe and then had some time to cool down. I would ask her to unpick what happened when she got into a rage. It may be 'I lost my trainer' and I would ask her, 'how can we avoid that happening again?' and she would decide, next time, she would put her trainers where she could find them.
I've also had to suggest appropriate phrases to ask for help as she can't always think what to say. Sometimes she communicates better by text. Back then she used messenger and could send me a sad face to let me know something was wrong.
You might talk to her about minimising stress. Does she like the exams? If there are too many things going on in her head, it will only make matters worse, so discuss what makes her happy and what causes stress. It is a difficult age. Is she in first year at secondary? Is there stress there?
Whether your daughter has AS or not, I think it's good to acknowledge what stress can do to us, and how to manage it in a way she can understand.
She still texts me when she can't talk direct and she's 20 now.
Posted 02 July 2016 - 09:53 PM
But normally it's not just the one thing that you see that 'appears' to cause the meltdown. More likely it's been lots of little things and that last one just takes it too much. They could have been building up over the day or even a few weeks.
You most likely won't get any sensible response until she has calmed down. Though everyone is different, for me being left alone and allowing me to settle in my own time was about the only way. If there is anything that has a calming effect (even if it's something that wouldn't work for you, people on the spectrum can find the most unusual things help) then just leave it near her. She'll pick it up when she can. Once she's past the stage where she might hurt the dog, that is good one for calming people (or any pet) because they don't rely on language.
Posted 04 July 2016 - 10:36 AM
"When my autism gets too big" is one but might be a bit young for her.
"Aspergers and adolescence"
"Aspergers syndrome and difficult moments practical solutions for tantrum rage and meltdown"
"People with autism behaving badly" (although I really dislike the term behaving badly this book is really understanding towards autustic minds).
Hope some of these books hekp you.
Posted 16 November 2016 - 01:41 PM
Posted 18 November 2016 - 01:55 PM
jojoba04, although I can't advise - I've never been a parent - I'd just like to say that your daughter is very fortunate to have a mother who cares so much about her and is trying to find the right solution. If I project myself back forty-odd years to when I was 12, I can identify with aspects of your description of your daughter's behaviour. I too was "sweet, quiet, polite, painfully shy" (perhaps even more unusual for a boy) but when I got home from school I'd have terrible rages, once slamming a drawer in my bedroom desk so hard it broke. One evening I told my mother I was going to kill myself - and for a moment at least really meant it - but her reaction was merely to become very angry, taking my suicide threat as a personal insult. The trigger incidentally was my spilling ink over a new maths textbook when doing homework - though obviously there were far deeper causes underlying that. These were never investigated by my parents or anyone else.
Although I was academically gifted, I was a very slow worker, especially on my own, so homework was a source of great anxiety for me - a mountain to be faced every evening and one which seemed to become bigger as the schoolday wore on with two, three, four subjects being piled on, all to be done at the end of an exhausting day. In the 1970s there was no internet to consult, I was an only child and between the ages 11 and 16 I had no friends whatsoever. (I didn't even live in the same area as those in my class.) In most subjects I was always terrified of misunderstanding the question or getting everything wrong. Asperger's was virtually unknown then, at least in the UK, and there was certainly no help ever offered to me either in terms of socialising or approaches to schoolwork. As far as all the teachers were concerned, I was a very bright boy and the fact I had no friends, solitary interests and was rubbish at sports and practical subjects gave them no cause for concern.
I managed generally to conceal any meltdowns from the wider family, but I remember on rare occasions when they did occur aunts or grandparents would be shocked and say, "I've never seen you like this!" But there was no real attempt, as far as I know, to understand what might be wrong with me. I wasn't diagnosed with Asperger's until recently, at the age of 55 (and even then only after years of persistence on my part) and I think my life would have been a lot easier if I'd been offered the specific forms of help I needed much earlier. So if a diagnosis is available for your daughter, and she does prove to have AS, I believe you'd be doing her a great lifelong favour by allowing her to access the support which seems to be provided now - at any rate, it would be more than I ever received! If she doesn't have AS, at least you've ruled it out.
Edited by Oblomov, 18 November 2016 - 02:00 PM.
Posted 18 November 2016 - 07:10 PM
Being a parent isn't easy, by any means, but getting a little reassurance from someone who has experienced the same things as my daughter in their childhood means a lot, thank you.
Thank you for sharing your personal experiences.
I do hope that your diagnosis has allowed you to understand yourself a little better and now get you the support you may need.
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