Maurin - posted on 07/01/2010 ( 4 moms have responded )
I'm not sure how many post have been made about this issue, so I'm sorry if you all have heard this before. My daughter, Haylie, is 11 years old and she has been diagnosed with Aspergers. I'm not sure how much I agree with this diagnosis, but that's a different post entirely. I've seen her attitude and behavior change and get worse over the years. She was diagnosed early 2009 and it was by our therapist. No tests were done. I'm not even sure there are tests for it. We are in the process of getting a second opinion. Anyways, the reason for this post is my daughter's temper tantrums over the smallest things. The best way I can explain this is by giving an example. The other day I gave her a time out because she was purposefully being overly bratty to her brother. I know it's a typical thing for a little sister to annoy her older brother, but this was a bit extreme. Once I told her she had a time out she immediately started questioning it and saying I wasn't being fair.....which is how they all go. I told her that she may not think it's fair but she still is going to serve the time out....which is only 11 minutes (one minute for each year she is old). This is where she starts getting defiant. She will sit down and flat out tell us "NO, I am NOT serving the time out"! This is also where I think she may have been misdiagnosed. She is so defiant when she's asked to do something she doesn't want to do. Once it gets to this point a temper tantrum is inevitable. I don't get how she does NOT get that if she would just serve the stupid time out she could go back to doing whatever it was she was doing in the first place....besides annoying the snot out of her brother. What could have been taken care of in 11 minutes turns out to be an all day or night thing...depending on when she gets the time out. We don't back down from anything. Once we say she has a time out, she will serve that time out before she gets to do anything else. She runs to her room to avoid it. Aside from her bed and her dresser there isn't a single thing in her room. Yes, it got SO bad that we removed every toy, every piece of furniture that wasn't necessary and every decoration out of her room. So when she runs up there all she does is sleep. She will come down hours later (usually around dinner time cuz she smells the food) and ask if she can eat dinner before serving her time out. We said yes to this ONCE and what did she NOT do? Yep, the time out. So we don't make that mistake anymore. She doesn't get to do anything until that time out is served. This then restarts the temper tantrum and she runs back up to her bedroom. In the last 3 months we have done that maybe 3 or 4 times so it's not like we are depriving her of food on a nightly basis. Come breakfast time she will eat and usually serve her time out right afterwards. We ask her if it was worth it and she always says no, but she never learns because a couple days later the same thing will happen again. Not necessarily to the extent above, but it takes an act of Congress to get her to do something she doesn't want to do. Anyone else out there going through the same thing? Any advice would be welcomed!