Okay, let's be honest here. One of our munchkins is struggling. For the past 7 months he has been a hot mess. Here is a bit of a rundown on his behaviors that we are seeing and trying to deal with.
1) He came within a fraction of not passing third grade. In fact, he wouldn't have passed except his teacher didn't enter a bunch of zeros into the computer and therefore his grades barely passed. Why was he flunking? He didn't do his work in class or he did the work but put in non-sense answers. He actually ATE his spelling test one time. He is a smart kid, very smart, and it took a determined effort to rise to this level of failure.
2) He threatened to kill a classmate. He hurt classmates physically. He said and did mean things to his friends and brothers, but always away from adult eyes and ears. He stole things. He denied each and every instance even in the face of multiple witnesses.
3) He has clogged the toilet multiple times with so much toilet paper that it is sticking out of the seat. Then he flushes and flushes until it all flows all over the bathroom. Then he shuts the door, walks away and denies it was him.
4) Be breaks everything he touches. At current count there are 5 broken sets of headphones, at least 7 sets of broken goggles, two broken RC cars and one RC helicopter, pool floats, his computer, his iPad, two chargers, the painting in my entryway, his watch, a curtain rod, and much more I can't even remember. Just yesterday he tore a pool noodle into three pieces. We keep taking things away and not replacing them, so he breaks other people's stuff. He came home from camp one day with a pair of sunglasses (not his) that he had twisted into a pretzel.
5) He has zero impulse control. I subbed at school one day and took him with me (no way I could leave him home) and he was out of control. He hit a 4 year old in the head with a tennis racket, got in trouble for wrestling multiple times, knocked over and then walked on a space divider in the library, knocked books off the shelves, repeatedly threw the playground balls at peoples heads, and used the large balls to ram and knock over people. I made him sit out over and over again and he then sat there and gave me the death glare. Really, if looks could kill I would be dead a million times over.
6) Everything is 'Sorry, it was an accident.' He wanted me to smell his soup today and managed to pour it down my shirt. He went to give me a hug and bent my arm backwards hurting me. He is walking through the dining room and knocks over a chair. He smacks his friend in the head with pool noodle. He breaks something. 'Sorry. It was an accident.' Okay, he's a kid, accidents happen. But after the 50th or 60th 'accident' of the week you have to wonder what his real agenda is. If it is to drive me insane, then he is succeeding.
We have greatly reduced the amount of stimulation he gets. Very few playmates and only at our house under my watchful eyes. No birthday parties, no trips to the zoo or movies or anything fun. We have made sure he is getting enough sleep (he is a monster if he is tired). He goes to therapy. The only thing we haven't done is put him back on medication. It has been almost 2 years since we got him off of everything. Well, it is time to revisit the idea of meds. He has an appt next week. That will give us enough time to get him used to them before school starts. No idea what meds we will use, that will be determined after we see the doctor and have a long talk. The child is not going to be happy. He hates meds. They are the source of a massive power struggle between us. I wish we didn't have to go there again, but this cannot continue. He has a very tough, no-nonsense teacher this year. His life is going to be absolutely miserable if this behavior continues. My biggest fear is that they will kick him out and send him to the alternative school. Honestly, after he threatened to kill a classmate they had every right to do exactly that. He is on borrowed time already and their tolerance for his actions is gone.
So there it is. The ugly truth. We are struggling but not giving up and not quitting!!!
Oh, I forgot to add, when our traumatized kiddos behave the most unlovable, that is when they need the most love.