I do have a Very Inspiring Blog award to address, and I promise I will. But this just happened this weekend, and I need to get it down.
I was having a conversation with the mom of one of Little Man’s classmates on Saturday, K, the classmate, lives across the street. They’ve known each other their entire lives. She’s been a big help to him at school the last couple of years. She sits right next to him in class.
Little Man has been hanging in there. He still seems to struggle to keep it together at times, with the afternoon being the biggest fall-apart time. Friday, they had a substitute teacher. While he knew it was coming, it was still hard for him to adjust. He had some rough moments and had to take a few breaks, At some point, he had a conversation with K about his crying and taking breaks. He told her, “When I get upset, everyone tells me to take a break, but no one ever asks me what’s wrong.”
Hmmmmm…….I was momentarily speechless when K’s mom shared this. Wow. He can articulate, and he is aware. i think we get so caught up in helping him recover, and in keeping him from disrupting the class, we forget he also needs to learn to tell us verbally what’s causing his angst. We forget to work on the cause as we focus on getting him through the meltdown. You guessed it, I feel like something of a loser mom for not realizing this. Kudos to him for speaking up.
K makes him feel safe, obviously. I’m so glad he can talk with her, and that she shared this conversation with her mom. You can bet I will be putting into practice asking the cause when the crying starts, Now I know asking him will require a lot of patience. It usually take him awhile to respond to anything in those moments. But if something fixable is making him cry, we ask, and he is able to tell us so we can fix it, then the need for a break goes away – progress for all of us.
I have to reiterate how stunned I was we never thought to ask what was wrong when he starts losing it. I ask my NT kids what’s wrong when they start crying. Why not ask him the same? Or are we just so used to him crying for random, or uncontrollable/unchangeable things that we stopped asking? I’m going to have to ponder that one.