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Thread: Anger issues

  1. #1

    Default Anger issues

    Well, my dear son lasted a full 2 and a half days at day camp without any problems. When I went to pick him up on Wednesday afternoon, I was told he had a lot of "hands on" and would need some reminders before the next day.

    That night, we had a discussion about how to deal with problems, and other kids, etc. I even had him go to bed an hour earlier to ensure he got a good sleep.

    Yesterday - lunch time - the dreaded call comes in to work. Problems, young kids, he is so big, really not comfortable with him being here... So I offered to come and get him. They said he could stay for the remainder of the day. I could tell she really didn't want to say it, but I knew he wasn't welcome for the next day (today). I didn't make the poor lady say it - I just offered to keep him home for the day. She was very apologetic, and said that although she understand about the anger issues, she just can't risk the chance of a young camper being hurt or scared by my son's upsets.

    I'm so frustrated right now. It has been so nice for the past month (since school ended) to have NOT been getting those types of phone calls. Now, only 2 days of camp, and it begins yet again. Why does this happen? Why can't he just get along with other kids? I know there aren't any real answers, and I guess I really don't expect any from anyone here, but I am SO tired of hearing how horrible he can be. He's not really a bad kid, but very few others are given the chance to see the wonderful child I know he can be. Child...not really the right term for a 13 year old, but he is emotionally immature, and will always be my 'baby'.

    Well, thanks for the opportunity to have a little "poor me" time. Between my two sons, I've been dealing with STUFF for almost 11 years, and I think my strength is waning.

    Hope the summer is going well for everyone.

    Be well,
    Jori

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    5,943

    Default Anger issues

    Jori,

    Anger issues and rage reactions seem to be a part of Tourette which requires some special strategies.

    It seems that when a person with Tourette is subjected to additional stessors, bearing in mind that the baseline stress or anxiety level of a person with Tourette is higher than the general population, then the added stress seems to provoke these reactions.

    Also requests for the person to multi task, such as "make your bed, brush your teeth, wash your socks, do your homework" where the multiple requests are stated all at once, seem to trigger a rage reaction.

    We are told that there is sometimes difficulty to compartmentalize tasks in the mind, and so multiple requests create and a mental overload, causing the thinking process to block and the result is a rage reaction.

    How to deal with them requires some creative thinking as well as patience and understanding by all concerned.

    If those living with the person with Tourette understand the triggers, they can help avoid the situations by making single requests.

    Dialogue with your son will probably be the best approach, to allow him to articulate how he feels in these situations, and to help him figure out ways to recognize the rage reaction developing and to abort or curtail the reaction.

    Some people have found behavioral therapy to he helpful to recognize and limit rage reactions.

    Has your son's doctor had any suggestions as to what treatment strategies could be considered?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    962

    Default Anger issues

    Jori:

    Steve provided a sound response to your experience and some good advice.

    Personally we have been through the same troubles. Not only does my son have a lower tolerance level but the anxiety issues rise when he is in a group.
    Oddly enough the younger kids tend to be drawn to him and this too causes a poor reaction. He feels like he is their keeper instead of having fun and he does not really want that responsibility. Initially his approach is gentle and I think that is what draws the crowds. But when he can not get away from the situation he can just pop.

    Hopefully you can get some professional direction to help you. WE were not able to and had to teach him to redirect and learn when to walk away. We even used code words he could use with adults to let them know he needed to leave.

    A list of triggers is always provided before dropping him off and even our school keeps a list and did a in service program this past year to help staff and the other students better understand.

    I did not sign my son up for any camps this year and am hoping if we can get through the next school year without any major issues he can take the Quebec trip with the rest of his class. I am sure I will have a seat on that bus...

    Fingers crossed...

    In short, I understand your frustrations but there is light at the end of the tunnel. My son had to learn to "take responsibility for his actions" which is a hard task for any 13 year old to do with or without TS+. With a lot of cooperation from adults and guidance from us he has learned how to manage better and life is a little easier now for all of us.

    The statement about safety of other children we have heard before too and it can hurt. My son is also emotionally/socially immature and this can happen, so we work on developing him at a steady pace and have seen some real progress over the past year.

    Most importantly I had to dig my own heels in because my son will always be my youngest and my baby boy but I found I was empowering his behavior and social skills issues by not having the tools to make it better. This was a bitter pill to swallow for me but I got past it and I am glad I did because he has made some real life changes this year and we do not see the melt downs or rage reactions like we use too anymore.

    I wish you the best on this topic and you will find more of the same concerns in this forum that may provide some direction for you.

    You are not alone and it does get better.
    PJK

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    St. John's NL
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    1,147

    Default Anger issues

    Hi Jori

    I am sorry to hear things are not working out. The level of immaturity is common with our kids who live with TS ... there is a 2/3 rule that refers to the fact that due to the lck of social skills and awareness kids with TS are typically only as mature as 2 thirds of their age, hence being drawn to play with younger kids and the immature behaviors.

    One of the things I have done with my boys to help manage difficult situation is use social stories. Are you familiar with this type of strategy? These are often used for kids with autism to teach them how to respond in specific situations.
    Janet, mom of 4

    TSFC Homepage


    "Intelligence is always increasing; accommodation allows your intelligence to do what it has always done." Cassie Green, Washington College

  5. #5

    Default Thank you

    Just wanted to take a moment to thank you all for replying to my post. I think was having a bit of a 'poor me' moment. :oops:

    My son started showing behavioural problems around his 3rd birthday, I would say. As I look through his school records, etc., almost every report card is indicating behaviour problems. He saw a behavioural therapist at the age of 4. He was assessed for learning abilities then, and also saw a speech therapist.

    We have "done" Kinark - anger management group classes, one on one sessions, coping strategy classes, social skills classes - to the point that when our worker actually discharged my son, she was telling me that they didn't have any more classes for us as we had taken so many we would be able to start teaching them! (This was said in fun - she said I had learned a lot and was coping well)

    I have purchased The Explosive Child, and I guess I will need to get back in to reading it, and trying harder to figure out his triggers. I know his head goes crazy with ticcing when he is stressed, so that is a visible sign to mention. The problem is that I think the school thinks I'm just making more excuses for him - but I'm not. I know he can be difficult!

    Anyway, I'm rambling. I just wanted to say thank you for your support and kind words. We have our second appointment at the end of the month, so I'm not sure if we will have a dx then or not, but I have been in touch with a local group that would be able to do in-servicing at the school should we need it, and I am REALLY hoping that would be helpful. In the meantime, it is very nice to know I have this great forum and people "in the know" here!

    Be well,
    Jori

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    St. John's NL
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    1,147

    Default Anger issues

    You are allowed to have a "poor me moment" that is how we cope... but we haven't got time to stay there very long : ;)

    In-servicing the teachers and the students makes a world of difference. Once you put a name on what is happening with your child or you give those around him an explanation for some of his behaviors, then the environment around him will change. You should see a different level of acceptance and tolerance and ultimately understanding.
    Janet, mom of 4

    TSFC Homepage


    "Intelligence is always increasing; accommodation allows your intelligence to do what it has always done." Cassie Green, Washington College

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    962

    Default Anger issues

    Janet is right and you will enjoy the book very much.

    When I read it to help us with my son it was like reading our diary so I settled in to it pretty quickly.

    It has some wonderful tips and is the reason why I took a step back to reevaluate myself in the picture.

    The tools provided can help and you will even see your own child take a step back when the approach is different. Thats the part I enjoyed...

    Don't ever worry about venting here. It helps..

    Take care,
    PJK

  8. #8

    Default Anger issues

    HI

    I am having major issues with my son he is so aggressive and angry he is not even the same this last month. I dont know if it is the frusturation of his tics he tries scratching me hiting me I feel like he is out of control then minutes later he is back to his soft spoken kind little sweet boy I know. I am so frusturated and tired. I feel completely alone and do not know what to do. Does anyone know of a support group in langley. I am in desperate need o f help.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    5,943

    Default Anger issues

    The TSFC Chapters in are listed HERE

    However you can also call the National Office at (800) 361-3120 to find out if there might be a support person in Langley.

    Have you discussed your son's outbursts with his doctor?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    557

    Default Re: Anger issues

    You didn't mention how old your son is. If he is in school, and especially if he is younger (elementary school) some of the problems can be a change in routine. Many kids with TS and related disorders thrive on routine. When school ends for the summer their routine changes or disappears. Most kids enjoy the freedom of summer so it is difficult to understand that some kids seem to do worse in the summer or at other times of the year when routines change (Christmas, weekends, etc.)

    Some kids with TS have anxiety problems when they don't know what to expect. In school there is a set routine. School starts at a particular time, they know which class comes first, second, etc., when recess is, when lunch is and so on. In the summer, there can be much less routine. Even daycares and summer camps may not provide much structure and routine.

    Think about how your son responds to changes in routine. If you are planning to do an activity and then, at the last minute, change your plans, how does he respond? Is it easy for him to make the switch or is this a major deal? If he has problems with this it may be a clue that he finds security in structure and routine.

    You can set up a routine in the summer that will help lower your child's frustration level. For some kids simply enforcing a regular time to wake up, have meals and go to bed is enough structure and routine for them. Others may need a bit more routine. If your child does certain chores around the house then have them 'scheduled'. For example, he can walk the dog right after breakfast, or always change the sheets on his bed on Monday morning. Posting the daily/weekly schedule helps with enforcing the routine. Also posting a calendar of upcoming events (doctor appointments, outings, etc.) can help. There is more information on this in Understanding Tourette Syndrome: A Handbook for Families. The book is available through the TSFC.

    I hope you can connect up with a support group in your area. You can also continue to connect with other parents on this bulletin board.

    The upcoming TSFC conference in Edmonton is another place to connect with parents and to get advice from professionals who deal with TS on a daily basis. I have always found it a good place to 'recharge my batteries' and to get lots of advice and support to carry me through the following year.

    Let us know how things are going with your son.
    Cathy
    Forum Moderator
    TSFC Homepage

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