I had one of my award winning parenting fails today and I’m not thrilled with myself.
Essentially, I lost my patience with Gavin. It’s more that I lost my patience with some of his behaviors, more specifically, the way he was reacting to things.
For whatever reason, Gavin frightens very easily and when he’s startled he screams at the top of his lungs. This is a newer behavior and I think it’s been since lockdown.
Anyway, one of the things that happens alot now is he startles from the most benign things and reacts in a way that’s so over the top. It screams drama and doesn’t feel genuine. That doesn’t mean that it isn’t genuine, it just feels like drama.
I fully understand that kids on the spectrum can be very awkward and even have reactions to things that are seemingly over the top. I get that, I really do.
This is something that just feels different.
Honestly, if he’s legit scared or startled, that’s one thing. I don’t want him watching or playing anything that causes him distress. Rather than just say, this is too scary from me, he screams and throws himself to the floor.
Gavin is known to have a flare for drama, and in the past, that’s made it difficult to know what was what.
His current behaviors very much remind me of those times.
Anyway, we ordered dinner tonight and Elliott has been bugging me to watch Constantine the movie. I’ve seen it a million times and I decided that we would watch it together. There’s nothing scary about it. It’s not very violent but it deals with angels and demons type of stuff.
Gavin screamed in a scene where a bus passed by in the background. He screamed when bottles were being smashed and when one of the demons came on the screen.
I’m talking hop out of his chair and almost knock the table over kind of reaction. Then he gets this big smile on his face, like he’s proud of himself or he’d just done something really cool. Yes, it could also just be an awkward reaction.
It’s incredibly annoying and frankly, quite frustrating as well. It’s upsetting to his brothers and it just seems fake.
Assuming it is fake, I don’t know what his motivation is. Assuming it’s a genuine reaction, WTF is going on? Gavin has always been a bit strange when it comes to things like this. He’s afraid of Bob’s Burgers and King of the Hill but not the violent anime that I’ve caught him watching on Netflix.
I don’t know what’s going on with him. I’m a bit concerned that he may be regressing as a result of all this stress.
Tonight however, these behaviors got the better of me and I lost my patience. It’s partly because it’s frustrating and annoying but also because he came close to cracking his head on the corner of the mantle.
I was not very understanding or compassionate. I don’t think I hurt his feelings or anything like that but I yell at him and I shouldn’t have done that.
One of the things I really miss about my life before my marriage imploded, was being able to tag out when I was overwhelmed. I no longer have the luxury, as there’s no one else who can step in.
Most of the time I do okay but today was not one of those days. I should have stepped away and given myself a break and I didn’t. It’s so hard to find balance sometimes.
Fast forward a few hours and all is right with the world. Gavin’s doing his thing and I’m hoping everyone will go to bed early cause I’m exhausted. I’m going to assume this isn’t going to happen because the fireworks are constantly going off. Ruby is freaking out and I foresee a sleepless night.
Thankfully, there’s nothing going on tomorrow and perhaps I can sneak a nap. I need some rest and to recharge my emotional batteries.
You know, maybe it was all right you lost your temper and yelled. Not the best, but Gavin does sound over the top and if he doesn’t like being yelled at, maybe he can work at stopping? Even if he’s at the level of a 6 yr old, well, 6 yr olds can learn not to shriek.