Helicopter Parents, Lawnmower Parents and Smother Mothers

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blondeambition
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17 Oct 2011, 6:26 pm

Mama_to_Grace wrote:
Janissy wrote:
Mama_to_Grace wrote:
One of the WORST experiences I've ever had with my daughter was doing what a child psychologist told me to do to handle my daughter's meltdowns. I'll never forgive myself for following his instructions!
:x


Forgive yourself :heart:

I am curious what was the bad advice. I just got the useless "be consistent". Did you get something specifically disastrous?


They told me to hold her in a bear hug and not let go until she calmed. A few hours later I had been peed on and thrown up on (not to mention felt like I had just gone through a WAR) and she NEVER calmed (because I was triggering her fight or flight response). She ended up passing out in exhaustion. Want to know what the child psychologist said when I reported this? He said "next time it won't take as long". I wanted to punch that guy! Instead I said "there will NEVER be a NEXT time!" and I never went back!


The child psychologist sounds like an idiot! Whenever my older son with classic autism has a meltdown, only three things work: 1) distraction--watching a favorite video alone, 2) make him laugh (if the meltdown is not that bad), or 3) medication--a small piece of one of the clonidine pills he takes at night for sleep and anxiety (especially if it is bad).

My younger son with AS responds better to hugging and soothing words.

What works for one child does not always work for another. I think that it is important to know this. Treating every child with ASD or AS the same instead of figuring out each child's individual needs can cause a lot of needless stress.


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jojobean
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17 Oct 2011, 6:51 pm

blondeambition wrote:
Mama_to_Grace wrote:
Janissy wrote:
Mama_to_Grace wrote:
One of the WORST experiences I've ever had with my daughter was doing what a child psychologist told me to do to handle my daughter's meltdowns. I'll never forgive myself for following his instructions!
:x


Forgive yourself :heart:

I am curious what was the bad advice. I just got the useless "be consistent". Did you get something specifically disastrous?


They told me to hold her in a bear hug and not let go until she calmed. A few hours later I had been peed on and thrown up on (not to mention felt like I had just gone through a WAR) and she NEVER calmed (because I was triggering her fight or flight response). She ended up passing out in exhaustion. Want to know what the child psychologist said when I reported this? He said "next time it won't take as long". I wanted to punch that guy! Instead I said "there will NEVER be a NEXT time!" and I never went back!


The child psychologist sounds like an idiot! Whenever my older son with classic autism has a meltdown, only three things work: 1) distraction--watching a favorite video alone, 2) make him laugh (if the meltdown is not that bad), or 3) medication--a small piece of one of the clonidine pills he takes at night for sleep and anxiety (especially if it is bad).

My younger son with AS responds better to hugging and soothing words.

What works for one child does not always work for another. I think that it is important to know this. Treating every child with ASD or AS the same instead of figuring out each child's individual needs can cause a lot of needless stress.


Wow...hug therapy is really outdated and has proven to do more harm than good. What a quack!!


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Mama_to_Grace
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17 Oct 2011, 9:56 pm

We have a much better child therapist now and she has seen a meltdown first hand. She knows discipline or trying to reason is the WRONG way to go because she has seen first hand that there is absolutely ZERO higher level brain functioning/reasoning ability going on. I now know to keep myself safe and try to keep my daughter safe-that is my priority. I have had to put her in her room and hold the door and lisen while she destroys things and self abuses-but she will always calm down faster alone with zero external sensory input. It is impossible to redirect her at these times-even making eye contact worsens things.

The strange thing is when I can sense an impending meltdown-before it actually occurs-some extra sensory attention like hugs or squeezes work to calm. But once she is in the "storm" there is no approaching her at all.

I realize the bear hugs probably work with defiant NT children who maintain some level of higher brain functioning during their tantrums---but that that psychologist had NO IDEA what I was really dealing with.



aann
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18 Oct 2011, 5:40 am

Momsparky, unfortunately, there is a huge trend for NT parents to be helicopter parents. College campuses have had to hire people to handle parents, and they have special meetings for parents at the beginning of the year. In years past, never did parents call a proff, dean, or RA to handle matters of the students, but now they do all the time. In lower grades, parents do homework as never before. The term helicopter parent is a good one.

Just can't be applied to us, most of the time. It can be applied to me at times. It was wrongly applied to me when my son was younger. I knew he needed protection. Protection is my job as a parent.

Now that he is 10, he is doing better in many ways, including socially. My therapist is trying to get me to let him loose to make his own mistakes. Too strong a hand will keep him from opportunities to make good decisions and work things out in his own mind. Making too many hard and fast rules will shut him down from communicating also. I can't teach him if he doesn't share what's going on. So there are ways I need to pull back from hovering too much. There are situations where I need to hover, and others where hovering is detrimental.

Not to negate what anyone has said here. Been there, and have the emotional scars to prove it.



zette
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18 Oct 2011, 6:20 am

What is a lawnmower parent?



momsparky
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18 Oct 2011, 8:03 am

aann wrote:
Momsparky, unfortunately, there is a huge trend for NT parents to be helicopter parents. College campuses have had to hire people to handle parents, and they have special meetings for parents at the beginning of the year. In years past, never did parents call a proff, dean, or RA to handle matters of the students, but now they do all the time. In lower grades, parents do homework as never before. The term helicopter parent is a good one.


I don't know - even in that situation, labeling and blaming still does not solve the problem. These parents need to understand that they're doing their children harm, which is obviously the opposite of what they want to do. I think this still comes down to a lack of communication of expectations, and an unwillingness to understand the parent's side of things.

In the old days, we referred to the behavior rather than the parent, by saying "you are spoiling your child."

zette, a lawnmower parent "mows down obstacles and smooths the way" for their child.