I don’t know how it happened. I don’t know where it came from. We seem, lately, to be dealing with a lot of anger and downright rudeness from Little Man. Did we get lax in our parenting of him? Has he regressed? Is he in a new phase? Whatever it is, I’m not a fan.
Every response to a request is generally one of anger. And then if you correct him, he will rudely interrupt and yell out, “I know!” which gets me even more fired up. I will admit, I’ve lost it a couple of times in the last few weeks, and yelled back. Logically, I know it doesn’t solve anything, but darn does it feel good to just let it fly when you’ve been holding it back so long. We’ve talked with him when he’s calm. We’ve made him aware what he’s doing is inappropriate. We’ve disciplined, taking things away, adding chores, removing him from the room, none of which seems to be helping much.
We are six weeks into the school year, give or take. He’s settled in as well as he’s going to, and yes, he is having a much better year, at least from all reports I’ve received thus far. But the anger, oh, the anger….he just seems to be mad at the world all of the time. It seems he is only happy when he has the iPad, his iPod, or his DS in his face and everyone is leaving him entirely alone.
I never know what I’m going to get when I tell him to finish something, clean up after himself, do one of his chores, or attend to a conversation. He could be perfectly fine, or he could respond with the fabulous anger and rudeness. It makes me a little hesitant, but I refuse to cave. He is old enough and capable enough to contribute to the chores of the house, and pick up after himself. And I refuse to cave to letting him just stare at that screen for hours and hours on end. He is different, yes. He is autistic, I get it. But as another autistic mom states often, we must presume competence. And he is fully competent in this regard.
There are days I just look at him in bafflement. How can my sweet boy, the one who hauls around a giant stuffed shark, the one who almost-nightly crawls into my bed and snuggles close, the one who will grab my hand when he’s sitting next to me, how can he turn into such an angry, mean, rude person in an instant?
We have decided to just continue with what we’ve been doing…..point out his rudeness in the moment, make sure nothing else is wrong, and talk with him when he’s calm. If you ASD parents have any other suggestions/ideas, I’m totally open, because I’m so over the anger.