One of the biggest issues with daughter (which is also a trait found in PDA children) is that she just cannot cope when she feels out of control. I said we were having friends round last night, it didn't go very well to be honest. Daughter had written a 'play' for all 3 of them to do, however, two of them didn't want to do it. It didn't go down very well. In a split second, she went from feeling happy and in control to feeling stressed, anxious and frustrated. She hid in her room, banging on the wall, blowing a whistle and generally trying to wind the boys up. No amount of warnings or consequences were helpful. (They never are.) Once we have reached 'out of control', she really does become 'out of control'. I did take the whistle away from her. I did take the toy she was banging on the wall away too. She just screamed at me, picked up a bigger toy, started banging that against the wall and began whistling by herself. Amazingly loud for a 9 year old. Then she put some music on her phone and volume on full blast. All to get the boys attention because she couldn't cope. The boys did really well at ignoring her, considering. On my second trip upstairs, I took the phone away. This didn't go down too well. She chased me down the stairs and went into full blown meltdown. Right in front of our friends. She used to keep all her behaviours just for daddy and I but because she is finding it harder and harder to cope, she is becoming less worried about who sees her. Two of our friends had never seen her do this before, and were quite surprised. They had been warned though! For a meltdown, it was a reasonably short one which involved a fair amount of kicking, hitting and screaming. All at me, obviously, because I took the phone. Once she had calmed down, she wouldn't leave me. Sat next to me on the sofa being all silly and immature. Eventually, she was back to herself, but stayed with us and refused to leave to spend any time with the boys.
This morning, we went to Costco. Daughter likes coming there, she gets to taste lots of foods! She wasn't impressed that the only cake on offer had nuts on it though. And she didn't like the tomato soup they were tasting. I had to eat it for her. It was lovely!! She was noticeable immature throughout the trip. Hard to describe, but her behaviour, whilst isn't extreme most of the time, is much more immature than you would expect for a 9 year old.
It all makes her such hard work, the unpredictability, the treading on egg shells around her, trying desperately hard to 'parent' her without upsetting her.
Daughter is very sensitive to various things, brushing teeth causes huge issues. She doesn't like the feel of the brush, flavour of toothpaste, temperature of water... any excuse really not to bother. We have been luck since Christmas day, Santa brought her hello kitty tooth brush and toothpaste. The toothpaste is strawberry. So, for 3 days now, she has willingly done her teeth. Its been bliss but PDA children need variety. I don't expect this bliss to last, it wont be long before she doesn't like the toothpaste, or the brush will be dirty, or the bathroom to smell of deodorant too much to use. I have to plan the next step in teeth cleaning, much as I have to plan how I am going to get her to hang her clothes up without a meltdown, or tidy her stuff away from the lounge, or what ever else that I need her to do.
Daughter has been good today, but is tense. She is getting very quickly grumpy over little things, which is not a good sign. We are off out tonight as her dads band are playing in a local pub, we thought we would go along and watch. For those who know PDA, you will know how brave this is of me...we have ear defenders, Ipad to play on, phone to play on and food to hand. Hopefully, I can watch at least half of the show!
For anyone who doesn't know, I am fighting to get PDA diagnosed through out the NHS along with blogging my Christmas holidays, in the hope of spreading awareness. I believe there are hundreds of children, teens and adults who have been misdiagnosed and I am determined to fight hard to change this.
Please sign my petition, and share my blog. We have to fight for our children. Nobody will do it for us.
Have a good night. x