I decided to wait a few days before writing this post because I was upset and I didn’t want that to come out in my writing. And I will try to do that.
The day after I published my blog post His Inner World or Simple Defiance, I went ahead and made an appointment for Jacob with the pediatricians office. They had an opening later that day, or the next available opening would have been late July. I talked it over with Mickey and we decided that we really didn’t want to wait that long so we took the appointment that afternoon.
I sat down with Jacob to explain that we were taking him to the doctor but it was just to talk. He gets really upset if he thinks that there is a possibility of shots or hospital stay. I told him that they may listen to his heart, check his blood pressure, all the normal every visit things. He asked me what we would be talking about with the doctor. I let him know it was about his anger and not being able to sit still for anything. I told him that when daddy and I tried to talk to him about his anger he would just get mad even more. He seemed ok with everything.
When we got to the doctor’s office, he played in the waiting room. We tried to engage him in games to pass the time because as usual everything was behind about 30 minutes. When we were finally called back, they, as I had told him, did the whole run up of tests. Then we were shown into the exam room. His calm lasted for about two minutes then he was in hyper drive full force. He kicked off his shoes, was jumping on and off of the exam table, crawling in the space between the table top and shelf. I started to try to get him to calm down but then I thought well it’s probably better for them to see him in action. So I let him wreak havoc however he wanted.
So the first doctor (first year resident, not an attending) came in and sat down to talk with us. He asked general questions about why were we there and what were we looking for out of the appointment. We told him about the issues we were having with Jacob’s anger and all the issues going on besides the anger. And of course, Jacob is doing his thing. At one point, Jacob need to use the restroom so the two of us left the room for about five minutes. So as we return, he tells us that the attending will be in shortly to talk with us also.
Mickey tells me that he was saying that it was most likely “temper tantrums” and he needed more discipline. As he was telling me, the attending came in and asked the same questions. He also mentioned it could be “temper tantrums” and most likely would grow out of it.
No I’m sorry. I’ve been around children most of my life, in some capacity or another. I saw all of my nephews and my niece grow up. And I have worked as a daycare teacher, a substitute teacher, and worked in a fast food restaurant. I have seen temper tantrums from children. I have seen my son throw a temper tantrum. This, that is going on with my son, is not simply a temper tantrum! There is something more. Temper tantrums are outbursts, a temporary display, not an all day thing.
But according to the doctors, we are required to wait until he is in school and sent by referral from his teacher to get a diagnosis.
Wait, WHAT? I’m sorry, I have a lot of respect for teachers but they can not and will not ever know a single child in their classroom better than the parents. Not only that but since when does a teaching degree including psychiatric/psychological training. The doctor suggested telling the teacher that we needed him evaluated so that he/she could be on the lookout for stressed encounters for him. I don’t think I will be doing that. For one thing, that will set a precedent for my son to be judge at every emotional outburst. And also that may travel with him through the years.
I’m not hoping for a diagnosis of ADHD or something else, so that I can medicate him and let the medication fix everything. And no that is not a slur to those that choose to medicate. But we, as parents, decided we didn’t want him medicated. I just want to find ways to help him deal with his anger and other emotions. I want to be able to do activities with him, without the anger surfacing for apparently no reason.
I’m working on the “ME” part of the equation also. I don’t think it is all an issue of him. I know that how Mickey and I react to him has a lot to do with the acceleration of his emotions. We are both trying to pull away if we feel that things are not going to cool down quickly, to give him time to calm. I have been working on not raising my voice. I am setting aside some time each day to spend doing stuff that he wants. Each night, we do story time before bed. I have also been looking up organizational ideas to get his room streamlined better so there are not so many play options or clean up items.
So basically, we won’t be doing much more about it other than within our home. We will wait and see how school affects him. If and when it becomes an issue at school then we will decide what to do at that time. The most important thing is that my son feel safe, happy and loved. And he is loved beyond measure.