Meltdown matters

Ive talked about meltdowns before but just to make sure you fully understand and get it I thought I’d be a bit more descriptive so here goes mainly because tonight has been shit and difficult.

This would be a typical visit to the shopping centre and I cough unexpectedly for example while he’s pre-meltstrual.

Stage 1 – Pre-meltstrual  

This is bit where Reilly is just starting to show signs he’s not happy.  He becomes disinterested in EVERYTHING and growls at me and others.

Must be watched carefully for knocking things of shelves can’t afford to start bartering over breakages got to move fast.

Stage 2 – Can’t touch this

As if by magic he turns into a slippery little eel and its near impossible to keep hold of his hand, hood, arm, trousers etc.  For his own safety obviously you must hang on like a rodeo cowboy, he will run in front of cars, people, get on a bus (this has happened) and I usually drop bags, money, bank cards etc in the process.  My temperature raises by a couple of degrees and I need to get my coat off.  I have said in my head FFS a few times already.

Stage 3 – Puppet on a string

Trying to transport a child from A – B when their legs aren’t working is hard.  Especially now you’ve added your coat  to the list of things you are carrying.  It’s like someones put a Tom and Jerry magnet in his pocket and its attracted to the floor.

I take this opportunity for a breather and stand over him like the Colossus of Rhodes.  It’s at this point I will notice the first stream of tutters, judgmental bastards who’ve never done anything wrong in their lives nor have their kids or grandkids.  Angels.  They sweep past watching you over their shoulder while discussing with their friend how shit you must be as a mother. Up yours.

Stage 4 – Shaddap your face

Reilly can’t talk as you know but I bet he could smash a glass with his wailing – like a banshee.  Red faced, snotty and sweaty still on the floor.   Queue more admiring glances from passers by with the odd ‘smack his arse” comment just audible above the racket.  These people sometimes get shown the middle finger or quite simply told to fuck off or I will smack you.  I’m usually on the verge of a panic attack by this point.

giphy

Stage 5 – I can’t stand up for falling down

Ive accepted that we cannot stand here all day, i’ve mastered my bitch face and i’m moving him out of there by any means necessary.  Over the shoulder would be good but he’s getting too heavy.  So I stand him up, he crumples back to the floor making sure he hurts his knees and hands in the process and we do this until we get outside, up and down like a little angry frog.  People should know at this point that catching my glance will equal Medusa’s stare and they’d be wise to jog on.

Sometimes at this point I will clock someone who knows, someone who’s been there and they give me that understanding Deidre Barlow face and it lifts my spirits momentarily.  Enough to get to a place to regain some composure and carry on with our day.

This meltdown cannot be bought off with a new toy, an ice cream or a trip to Disneyland Paris. It can last upto an hour and they are exhausting for us both.  There is no negotiating and I do not know if my cough feels like nails across a blackboard or thorns sticking in his ears.  It’s tragic and stressful, it’s really really stressful and I hate it.  I hate myself for losing my cool with him (not always but I am human) I do not hate myself for swearing at Judge Judys,  to avoid my wrath  don’t stare at us, don’t comment, don’t judge.  It’s hard enough.

Get me a taxi or a diazepam or preferably both and I’ll be forever grateful. 

 

 

Published by

Christine Stephenson

Really busy mam who runs her own charity, has 3 sons and learning about autism every day. Contact me at alphaautistic@gmail.com

4 thoughts on “Meltdown matters

  1. I have a child too who is undiagnosed and verbal. Man did you accurately describe those tantrums. High five, it is ok to loose your shit and pour a big glass of something when u get home. Do not let those judgy pant jerks get you down.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I wouldn’t and don’t apologise for swearing at judgy onlookers either
    I can’t even think about how I would cope physically if Mimi had meltdowns like this, she will be the child under a table banging her head or picking off her whole fingernails
    You deserve a medal and the diazepam x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel your pain. My son who is now 15 had meltdowns lasting 2-3 hours at a go several times a week as a little one. Now they’re 1-2 times a month. Even though he is verbal, he really cannot articulate his thoughts or feelings at all when he’s in full swing. Fortunately for me they now happen almost exclusively at night, usually about 9-10 PM (of course always on nights when I have to get up at 4 AM). It’s absolutely draining. I feel like an emotional punching bag afterwards. But, he’s making progress, and I just have to keep reminding myself of that.

    Liked by 1 person

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