I shouted at my disabled child

13 Apr

Oh yeah, I shouted at her.

She threw a shoe at her brother because she was angry with me for turning off the tv.

I turned off the tv because she was screeching at her sister.

Mind you, these siblings did NOTHING to earn such responses from their sister.  She was just being moody and awful.  She was already heading for a time out when she took off her shoe and threw it straight at her brother’s face.

I will say, her aim was excellent.  I was kind of impressed.

But her over-the-top reaction needed an over-the-top-in-her-world reaction from me.  Which was me saying very loudly and very sternly “MAURA!  NO! You do NOT throw shoes at your brother! You do NOT throw ANYTHING at ANYONE!”

She started to howl, and I said “HUSH!”

She hushed.

Because while my child is cognitively disabled, she does have the bare basics of right and wrong down.  Shoe throwing is wrong.  Even she knew she had crossed a line with that.

It’s hard with Maura at times, because she doesn’t get so many concepts.  I can’t take something away for a day or a week, she doesn’t have a great grasp on time. If she is in trouble, that point has to be made at that moment, or else it’s forgotten in her mind.  Her moods can come and go so quickly.  She gets basic things – like “If you can’t control yourself, we have to leave” and time outs.  Even then, time outs are more for her to calm herself down.  If we try to stay in the situation, she will stay in it emotionally, which is why you’ll see me walking her out of somewhere quickly as she is carrying on.

If she’s upset because something isn’t working right, I try to talk her through it.  We try talking through things first.

But sometimes…she’s just being a bratty little sister, and should be dealt with as such.

Like yesterday.  Throwing shoes at the brother who had the bad luck of being right there.

And you know what?  It’s okay to shout at her for being a bratty little shoe throwing sister.  She learned a lesson and hopefully won’t be using her siblings (or anyone else) for target practice. She spent some time in a comfy chair, Monty Python Spanish Inquisition style, and we hugged it out afterwards, all was forgiven.

In a weird way, it was a bit of a normal moment.  She was being horrible, I shouted at her, we hugged it out afterwards.

No one said all normal moments would be fun.




4 Responses to “I shouted at my disabled child”

  1. franhunne4u April 13, 2015 at 1:57 pm #

    Ah, yeah – don’t you love puberty?

  2. Robin April 13, 2015 at 2:04 pm #

    oh goodness, tough moments and redefining Normal! Totally get this though, my husband and I were having a conversation last night about “not being able to give our son a pass….” regarding stuff that’s tough for him. So often I do, because it’s easier to let things go and avoid even more conflict, but it is starting to bite me in the bum as a parent….so many more things to worry about as they get older!

  3. Kelly April 13, 2015 at 2:57 pm #

    I feel like you just wrote “a day in the life of” our family. I know our friends don’t understand why we raise our voice at Annissa sometimes, but you described it to a T. She doesn’t understand a lot, but she does understand basic concepts of right and wrong. While it might not stick for more than a couple of minutes we only hope something will trigger before she attempts to do it the next time.

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