Friday, September 2, 2011
Temper Tantrums or Autism??
Pin It Let me paint a picture for you: I'm standing at the kitchen counter, slicing strawberries for dinner. Little Buddy comes over and starts tugging at my pants. "Dinner will be ready soon," I say. He continues to tug at my pants, getting more and more insistent, even stomping his feet while he whines and points. I hand him one small strawberry to tide him over. He smacks my hand away. He doesn't want strawberries. He starts genuinely crying now. Louder. And louder.
I stop what I'm doing. I pick him up and let him reach out for what he wants. He can't talk yet so he can't tell me what he wants. He goes straight for the knife. He's getting so strong and fast that he almost jumps out of my arms. "You can't have the knife Little Buddy. It's too dangerous." I put him down and try to turn to go back to my strawberries.
Unfortunately, Little Buddy is now in full-blown tantrum mode. He is laying on his stomach, banging hands and feet and crying hysterically. Now I have a few options that I consider:
1. Abandon dinner and run around the house frantically trying to find something else that will make him happy.
2. Wrap a towel around the knife, followed my masking tape so that it's not sharp anymore,and carefully supervise him while he plays with the knife so that he stops crying
3. Ignore him
But here is what my doctor said:
"Katie, he interacts with you and is playful. He doesn't have autism, at least at this point. He is strong-headed, you have a tough one. Ignore him completely when he has a tantrum. Go into another room. Act like you don't even hear him. After a few weeks, you should start seeing a difference."
Oh, so he's just being a brat! Lightbulb!! Sure enough, I did see almost a 180 degree turn-around. No longer did I have the kid who was kicking his legs and screaming at the top of his lungs in the mall. He settled down after a few weeks and now I'm not even TEMPTED to let him play with knives!! :-) Now, here is how is life looks: