Need help getting dressed

Amy - posted on 01/27/2009 ( 18 moms have responded )

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I don't know if any body out there is experiencing what i do every morning. Katelyn is 8 and every morning it is a struggle to get her to get ready for school she does not like how any thing feels on her skin, we have been to therapy and some things they suggested helped but not much.. Its so painful and frustrating to see her go thru this every day any suggestions? i cut out tags, i buy no seem socks, soft cloths,ETC....

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Kim - posted on 02/28/2011

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WOW...I just found this post. I hope some of you still check this, since I see it was in 2009. I have an almost 5 year old daughter who does exactly what you all are saying, every morning when she has to get dressed. Even though she helps pick out her outfits the night before, she has huge meltdowns EVERY DAY regardless of what she's wearing. If it's not her socks, then it's her underwear, her shirts, her hair...you name it. There is always an issue with something on her. She never wants to wear whats appropriate for the weather either. We have had to literally force her clothes on her so that she can get out of the house on time, otherwise she would have tantrums for hours. If any of you have figured out the best way to help her, please PLEASE give me some advice. Thank you!!!

[deleted account]

My 5 yr old has tactile defensiveness & has had challenges getting dressed since 18 mos. We did do occupational therapy when she was finally diagnosed at 3 - and it helped - but when she hit 5 things flared up again... We spent a lot of time looking for materials/styles that work - but this winter she started refusing to wear underwear because it bothered her. We ended up working with a psychologist... and he recommended we basically get her to figure it out for herself. We set the rule (get dressed in 10 min or we do it for you & you have to wear what we pick out)... and leave her alone to figure it out. There was one time where I had to hold her down to get dressed & she had an all-out tantrum... but the next day she was able to do it... and each day it seems to be getting easier for her.



I'd be happy to talk live or via email further if you'd like... We've tried so many different things through the years - but we eventually hit a wall where we couldn't compromise & find something that her body would "agree with" - and we had to force it - even through the tears. It's working for now... but each day is a crap shoot!

Lee - posted on 12/03/2012

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Maggie- i think we might be the same person... because i was reading your post and thought it was me writing it. my son is 4 and i think he has SPD. i spent an hour this morning trying to get him to put a pair of underwear on... followed by a melt down of how mean i am.. i am late for work everyday, i cry almost everyday. tonight we ended with.... mommy you are not right for me, you talk to much, there are vampires in my room.. oh and i cut his nails today- you would have thought i cut off a limb... i know you likely wont read this since your post was in june... but it is nice to just to get this off my chest. everyday is a battle and i thought it was just a misbehaved boy- i was so wrong..

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Jolie - posted on 02/09/2013

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We go through this every morning w/ our 7 yr old daughter as well. Sometimes I firmly rub the trouble areas like around the waiste, neck area & back. She likes to press her elbows into my thighs when I do her hair. Sometimes I give her the basket of hair stuff to distract her. Above all I keep reminding myself to remain calm & this too shall pass!. :) Oh, & the school said on a really bad day she could come in her PJ's with a change of clothes. I haven't done that yet.

Rachel - posted on 12/12/2012

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Hi all I am very new to this and at this point am not even sure thats whats going on w/ my son. He is five and while i recognize sensory issues in him its almost the opposite, he never complains about the way his clothes feel, but it takes him FOREVER to get dressed like at least an hour if I don't have to go to work. when i do have to get out of the house early i have to dress him. the only thing he complains about is that he hates when he has a new pair of shoes. I think he might be HYPOsensitive because he is always crashing in to people/things and has said twice now that "he's trying to hurt himself". we visited pediatrician today and he definitely has some neurological deficits as well as low muscle tone. anyone else ever heard of a child being hyposensitive?

Maggie - posted on 06/22/2012

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My daughter is 5.5 yrs. old. Diagnosed at 3 yrs. old. We've done OT in the past. She has periods where she does really well. She hasn't worn underwear in 2.5 yrs. but has started wearing seamless socks. Small steps! Shoes vary and depend on the day. Clothes are difficult. We had a 6 month period recently that was like heaven. She was wearing a lot of different clothes. Then about 2 weeks ago it all went down hill. I feel the pain of all that have written on here and deal with SPD. It's an awful thing to experience and you don't know it unless you've been through it. We are going back to therapy in 2 weeks, first available appointment. I cry almost every day. I'm late for work everyday, my daughter is late for school. We often miss out on the fun stuff like a swim party just because a bathing suit is bothering her, etc. It's a battle each day. I wrote on here today as I had a rough morning.... 2. 5 hours just to get one shirt and a pair of shorts on. It's nice to know that we are not alone in this... but would be nicer if we didn't have to experience it. One day at a time!

Shelley - posted on 03/14/2011

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Dressing is also very hard for us & as my boy gets bigger & stronger its becoming even harder I wonder each day if it will ever become easier. I will be happy when summer is here & I do not have the struggle of winter clothes on top of regular ones. My son is almost 4

Mary - posted on 05/12/2009

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Hi Amy, I totally understand what you are going through! I have an almost 5 year old son and we go through the same thing just about every morning! I got to a point where I felt I just couldn't "fix it" for him and told him that if his clothes were bothering him, he would have to figure out a way to fix it himself. I felt that was putting a lot of responsibility on the little guy but, for the most part, seems to work. Tags in his shirts used to bother him so when he was putting the shirt on, I would tuck the tag down and give it a firm pat. Now he does that little routine himself. Transitioning from summer to winter and back again is always a challenge, switching from long to short (or the opposite). I like the idea of giving a time limit because it seems to work in our house for other things. I let my son pick out his own clothes and we go with whatever he wants to wear. I do have restrictions on what he can wear to church but other than that, we go with the flow. Our latest issue is with jeans. He wants to wear them all the time but the bottoms around his ankles are "too wrinkly". I haven't figured this one out yet other than changing into sweatpants that don't have elastic at the bottom. I think the best I can tell you is that you are not in this alone and hope that you can take a little away from everone's responses. -Mary

Kathryn - posted on 04/22/2009

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I go through the same thing every morning! My daughter is 6 and I've always thought she had sensory issues but we are just now getting the help we needed several years ago. She was also put on Vyvance last week for ADD which seems for some reason to have made her sensory issues with sock and clothes worse?? To help with the mornings, she picks out her clothes the night before; and we are trying to get up early so we are not running late when she decides to have these episodes; we are trying to stay calm also so she doesn't get overwhelmed. Also, check out these two books that give ideas: The everything parent's guide to sensory integration disorder and the out of sync child. Sorry I can't be of much help, but at least you know you are not alone:)

Taunya - posted on 04/11/2009

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Oh my gosh!...I feel like I am listening to my own story here! Don't give up! It does get better...if they are giving up then it is time to find someone new! I totally get it and completely understand! At one point I just had to call the counselor at school and explain (had a meltdown) to him what was going on and why she was always late and why she might have a horrible day...he was the one who suggested SI and got me on the right track!

Taunya - posted on 04/11/2009

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Quoting Amie:



Hi Michelle and Amy,






Wow, do I ever know your pain!!!!  My daughter is 6, she will be 7 in May and we go through the struggle in the morning as well.  What a way to start everbodys day!!






As well as having a child with SI, we have a very strong willed little girl!!  I am not so sure that the timing thing works the best for her.  I am so glad that you have found a way to help you get through your mornings!  Her OT had her doing relay races to try to get her to wear shoes.  We had a huge problem when my daughter was cheerleading last year.  She had to wear certain shoes.  NOT MADDYN!






 






It got so bad that her therapist said to me, at one point, "you know in gymnastincs they don't have to wear shoes."  I thought, are you kidding me??!!!  You are not allowed to give up on us!  You can not tell me that this is impossible, my daughter HAS to wear shoes!!!






We have gotten over the shoe thing, at least for right now, but I have found that the focus often switches from one object to another.






We allow Maddyn to dress herself.  She picks out her outfits the night before and lays them out on the floor.  She is a great one for wanting to wear a tank top in the winter, and we let her.  I tell her that the school will not let kids wear tank tops in the winter without a hoodie or something over it, that it is against the school laws and she is okay with it. (probably because her dad is a police officer!?!?).......so......we are okay with it.  (Granted, we still have days that HER outfits still are aweful and we go through the battle, however, our mornings have become more peaceful.)






I understand how heartbreaking this is!!  We have been late for school a number of times due to her innability to get dressed!  I have found that it is often more important to have her unwind before we tackle the clothes issue again, than it is to stay on schedule.  Granted, I get that she needs to be in school!!!  I also know that to send her to school in the midst of a meltdown, often times results in a very unproductive day for everyone in her class.






Sorry if I am rambling!!!!  I guess I just wanted to say that I GET IT........and sometimes, most of the time, it sucks!!!






Thanks for listening and for starting this conversation!!  God bless you both and your wonderful, spirited, quirky, innocent and awesome children!!!






Kind Regards,






Amie






 





 

Taunya - posted on 04/11/2009

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Hi Amy~ I went through that with all three of my children. My daughter was the worst! I would sit and cry after she left for school, it was exhausting! I did send her to SI therapy and it seemed to help tons! She has also seemed to grow out of it a bit. She is twelve now and we no longer have any issues! I think there is hope! Hang in there!

[deleted account]

We found one spesific longsleeved shirt-style that our daughter agrees to wear, and now I try to buy only that shirt in different colours. It's just a little bit hard, because the brand is Next and they don't sell it here in Finland, atleast not in our region. Lucky for us there's eBay..



Also it helps, if the clothes are very much used. I have to wash new clothes over and over again to get them feel soft enough.

Kelly Smith - posted on 03/27/2009

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Have you tried having her go to the store and kind of "feel the clothes out" before you get them? Maybe she can find something the feels ggod to her. I've sometimes get a couple different shirts, etc and take them home for my son to feel. And I take back the ones back he doesn't like.

[deleted account]

I struggle with similar problems with my 3,5 year old daughter as well. Now there seems to be an easier period, but last fall it was terrible, and by then I didn't even know about SI...

We got her to keep clothes on by turning them inside out. The seams are the biggest problem for her. Also we let her tell what lenght of sleeves is good. mostly she wears sleeveless shirts, but she now has two longsleeved shirts that are okay insideout. Here in Finland it is necessary to have warm clothes in winter, and thank God, the winter overalls, snowsuits (what is the correct word?) do not have seams inside, so she can wear them the right way.

It seems to be very difficult for her to find fitting trousers, which are not too long and not too wide, because if they're not straight, they can not be worn. Mostly she wears tights (insideout) and skirts when we're not home. At home she wears only panties.

It is hard to cope with these problems, because she is also in her "princess period" and would want to wear beautiful clothes, but not any of them feel good. These things bother her as well as me. Well, we are promised to get to neurological policlinic in March or April and then hopefully to SI-therapist. My cousin is autistic 5 year old girl and her clothing-issues got much better with SI-therapy.

Amie - posted on 02/02/2009

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Hi Michelle and Amy,



Wow, do I ever know your pain!!!!  My daughter is 6, she will be 7 in May and we go through the struggle in the morning as well.  What a way to start everbodys day!!



As well as having a child with SI, we have a very strong willed little girl!!  I am not so sure that the timing thing works the best for her.  I am so glad that you have found a way to help you get through your mornings!  Her OT had her doing relay races to try to get her to wear shoes.  We had a huge problem when my daughter was cheerleading last year.  She had to wear certain shoes.  NOT MADDYN!



 



It got so bad that her therapist said to me, at one point, "you know in gymnastincs they don't have to wear shoes."  I thought, are you kidding me??!!!  You are not allowed to give up on us!  You can not tell me that this is impossible, my daughter HAS to wear shoes!!!



We have gotten over the shoe thing, at least for right now, but I have found that the focus often switches from one object to another.



We allow Maddyn to dress herself.  She picks out her outfits the night before and lays them out on the floor.  She is a great one for wanting to wear a tank top in the winter, and we let her.  I tell her that the school will not let kids wear tank tops in the winter without a hoodie or something over it, that it is against the school laws and she is okay with it. (probably because her dad is a police officer!?!?).......so......we are okay with it.  (Granted, we still have days that HER outfits still are aweful and we go through the battle, however, our mornings have become more peaceful.)



I understand how heartbreaking this is!!  We have been late for school a number of times due to her innability to get dressed!  I have found that it is often more important to have her unwind before we tackle the clothes issue again, than it is to stay on schedule.  Granted, I get that she needs to be in school!!!  I also know that to send her to school in the midst of a meltdown, often times results in a very unproductive day for everyone in her class.



Sorry if I am rambling!!!!  I guess I just wanted to say that I GET IT........and sometimes, most of the time, it sucks!!!



Thanks for listening and for starting this conversation!!  God bless you both and your wonderful, spirited, quirky, innocent and awesome children!!!



Kind Regards,



Amie



 

[deleted account]

Good luck!! All I can say is try it for a few days to see how it goes... The first day is brutal - when you are literally in a physical battle to get the clothes on... but then they realize it would really be better if they got dressed before that 10 min is up.... you might even be able to use a timer given she's 8 & can probably understand the ##s. Good luck & don't hesitate to reach out ... especially if it doesn't go well... it's so great to know I'm not the only one out there who has to go through this!!!

Amy - posted on 01/30/2009

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Thanks so much Michelle.  Theres  finally someone out their that understands!!!  I love the 10min rule i am going to try that and see how it goes.  Ill let you know how it goes.  Wish me luck.

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