Thursday, February 25, 2010

I need help.

Is it a behavior issue...or is he not feeling well...or a combination of both?

About three weeks ago, Logan started getting very upset when he sits down to eat and I put his food in front of him. When I set the food down in front of him, he immediately pushes his plate of the table onto the floor and yells or cries. If I force him to eat a bite (which really seems mean), he will usually resist the first few times, but then will start to eat (most of the time, but not all the time).

At first it was just every now and then, but it now happens at every meal. Last week, Logan came down with croup and a bad cough and I blamed his crabbiness at meals on that. I figured it was hard to eat when you are congested.

Now, he is getting angry everyday, all day. Everytime you want him to do something or even when he is just playing alone, he constantly gets mad and throws whatever is in his hand. Just like he throws his food.

A couple of days ago, I noticed that he is getting two teeth. They broke through his gums, but are just starting to come in. We thought he had all the teeth that he was going to get because his dentist said he was probably missing his upper canines. It has to be painful because there really is no room for them. Could his anger during meals times be because of his teeth, or is it a behavior problem?

Today, I took his to his first day of a class a the YMCA. It is a class for two year olds and I thought that he would do ok because he is typically so easy going. I was very nervous because of his recent behavior, but I was hoping he would be ok and have fun. Boy, was I wrong. His behavior was awful. He cried and threw everything he got his hands on. That is nothing like him!

I do know now that he isn't ready for this class, even without the behavior problems. This was the first time I have put him with typical kids his own age for a class...and it was very eye opening for me to say the least. He isn't ready to sit and listen to books being read or to sit and do art projects. I wanted to give it our best shot, but he's just not ready.

I don't know if I am going to give the class another chance...I'm not sure I could get myself to do it again. I have already contacted the YMCA to see if we can transfer to a different class for younger kids.

My hope is that we can just wait out the behavior stuff...maybe if it is his teeth, then it will pass. Or maybe it's a phase that will also pass. All I can say is that I don't know if my patients will last...I'm already to the end.

On a more positive note....
I have been meaning to post about a speech therapy session that Logan had a couple of weeks ago. His speech therapist recorded the words he said during the session. The stared words are ones he said spontaneously and the rest were imitations.
ooh ooh ah ah

I wish I could get him to talk to me the way he talks to her. He also followed many directions during the session.


Heidi said...

This sounds so familiar! I have been dealing with similar behaviour from Joel for the past year - on and off.

Every now and then he will act the same way during meals. I set him down and give him his food and he throws a fit. At first I too thought it was behavioural and tried to give him time outs and everything. That didn't really seem to help and I was so frustrated. Every meal time I felt so stressed just wondering if he would eat or if he would throw a fit. It was awful. He would be like that for a week or more and than one day he would be fine for at least a week or two. The only thing that I have been able to link to his behaviour is teething. Each time I would notice that his gums were either bulging or that a tooth had broken through. That must be the reason. I really hope that is the reason. He has 3 more teeth to go and is currently working on an eye tooth (which seems to be the worst).

I also notice when he is teething that he is just grouchier and has no coping skills. I have been in tears many days because I just can't handle his behaviour.

So, take heart that you are not the only one experiencing this and I really do think it could be related to teething. I hope Logan is feeling more like his old self soon - both for him and for you!

Oh - and thank you for sharing all of the words Logan is working on! He is doing so great! Joel is starting to talk more and more and I was wondering what other words he could start working on!

Tina said...

Hang in there Mel! It sounds like his behaviors are related to physical symptoms/ changes....teething, croup. Hannah gets crabby too when she doesn't feel well. It may also be the age. You have been blessed with such a sweet, even-tempered boy, that maybe this is just another phase....all kids go through them. Nonetheless, we will keep you and the family in our thoughts and prayers. If you need to let off some steam, or just a shoulder to cry on, give a call anytime.

Anonymous said...

I could have written this post 6 months ago!!!! I'm serious - we had the *exact* same issues with Eric. He was just so angry and miserable all the time. We had no idea what was going on, and was referred to a psychologist for what we thought were behavior issues. Of course, being in Canada and our wait lists lol, by the time the psychology department had an opening for him the phase was over. It lasted about two months, but it was a very trying time for us. We couldn't really take Eric anywhere or do anything as he would flip. His sleep was also affected and he was up all night in fits. It was almost like he was in pain. I am not sure if his teeth had anything to do with it, or just a stage, but he DID get past it and life is awesome now! The best advice we got at the time was to ignore his bad behavior completely (like when the plate with food gets thrown on the floor)and praise him while he was exhibiting good behavior (eating nicely, playing with toys good on his own). ***hugs*** I know it's hard but it will pass I promise!

Felecia :)

ParkerMama said...

I don't have any other ideas than the ones that have already been shared. However I can send lots of 'may this pass quickly vibes!' :D

Tammy and Parker
@ParkerMama on Twitter

Chris said...

Haven't you heard of the terrible twos? :) Did you think that kids with Ds didn't go through them? For awhile there, I did, and then they appeared.

Mealtime with John is such a challenge. He is a picky eater so when he refuses to eat foods I know he likes, I really lose it. I basically hold his face and force the food into his mouth. Once he realizes he likes it, he is fine. I hate doing it to him, but he is so small that he can't let him not eat. We get the food dropped on the floor, or the plate pushed off the table. I tell him that is wrong, and make him pick up the plate. I keep telling myself that we just need to forge through this behavior. All kids do go through it, but I think with typical kids it comes and goes more quickly. It also seems worse if the child is usually so laid back. I have found that bad behavior often comes before hitting a developmental milestone. If you haven't already done so, ask his OT about it, eating issues could also be sensory related.

So keep focusing on the positive. Logan is doing great with his speech! Maybe he is just showing a little more of his independence and testing his boundaries.

外國人 said...

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Lisa from Chicagoland said...

Hi Melanie-

Like the others, I'm so glad you posted this... and am going through the same thing with Cody at the present time... although it isn't eating related, he's still acting up in a way that I haven't seen before- and it isn't good!

I liked seeing the other comments that this is perhaps just a stage... I am going to hope for the best that this is all it is.
And I'm also going to pray that it ends before baby number 2 comes along in June.

On another note, I wanted to let you know that Cody is in day care full time with typically developing children. He has been there since he was 3 months old- and I have to tell you, being around the typical children makes a world of difference in Cody's development. There are many times I "sneak" in the room so I can observe him and he never seizes to amaze me how he interacts with others and with toys. He has been with the "preschool" aged children since the beginning of December- and the kids in that room are 2 1/2 to 4 years old. Cody transitioned to that room on time and so most of the kids were a lot older than him at the time. While he is FAR behind them all, he still learns a lot from them each day. Don't give up on putting Logan into classes with typically developing kids! They'll adjust and Logan will surprise you!

All the best-