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    #206240 - 11/21/14 01:59 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    aquinas Offline

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2513
    Originally Posted By: cammom
    Saying "I want to make someone feel bad" at four, is nothing like a self aware person saying it at twelve.

    Without knowing the context of the original discussion, I can imagine the underlying thought process being:

    1. X threatened me
    2. I tried to prevent X threatening me, to no avail.
    3. X crossed one (or more) of my boundaries.
    4. I needed justice restored/to protect myself.
    5. Hurting X met my needs in 4.
    6. Ergo, I wanted someone to get hurt.

    The motive is not the harm of others, but self-protection.

    Also, maybe I'm being uptight, but why are one year olds on a trampoline? That is surely not safe. They have no sense of their safety in space or the risk associated with bouncing near others.
    What is to give light must endure burning.

    #206243 - 11/21/14 02:30 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    notnafnaf Offline

    Registered: 04/07/14
    Posts: 199
    aquinas, 1 year old can mean anywhere between 12 months and 23 months - and although I don't know what type of trampoline is at this school, we have allowed our DD in bouncy houses and on a gym trampoline when she was "1 year old" - when she was 20+ months and holding her own with her 3.6 year old brother. So it is really a matter of the child and the environment (we pulled DD out when the bigger kids came, but if it were just the 2-4 year old crowd and not too many kids, she had no trouble knowing where she was in space in relation to the other kids - but being hit in the face intentionally is a whole different ball game).

    Regardless of the rationale and history, as other posters mentioned, it is critical that this behavior is addressed especially since you make it clear that this is usually targeted towards younger kids (I assume usually meaning smaller children). We are currently dealing with the reverse situation - a child twice DS's age who has shown some angry and inappropriate behavior towards DS and his classmates and usually when it involves a specific shared resource.

    And I do find it somewhat sad - and worried - that he is still holding tight to the memories of when he was wronged - because if he does not learn to put those experiences into perspective, it only gets worse (don't ask me how I know - I have one sibling whose inability to let go of childhood incidents has disrupted our family relationships and her anger spilled over onto our children). I don't know that 4 years old is the age they can learn to put past into perspective, but it should not be brushed under the carpet or used as an excuse to allow his current behavior.

    #206244 - 11/21/14 02:32 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    Zen Scanner Offline

    Registered: 07/13/12
    Posts: 1478
    Loc: NC
    I would move away from the specific moments, and look at a larger context that may be leading to him feeling disempowered. That's a primary key to cyclic bullying, abuse, violence.

    There are many ways a bright kid can feel disempowered in a pre-school... such as pedantic baby talk from adults, interacting with age peers who are hardly distinguishable from the toddlers, being presented with instruction they already know and understand can make them feel stupid rather than smart, teachers verbatim repeating themselves to deliver a point, having younger kids get much more respect and attention, etc.

    But, the particular mechanic he responds with has to be addressed, violence begets violence.

    #206247 - 11/21/14 03:04 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    indigo Offline

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 5207
    The current thread is a "gut feeling" good enough? may be of interest.

    #206251 - 11/21/14 05:19 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    kdoelit Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 11/19/14
    Posts: 32
    Thanks for all of the insight everyone...this really is helping me tremendously! Even the hard to read things are good to consider. Oh trust me, I have feared that he is going to be a sociopath in many instances, although I do truly believe he doesn't intend to hurt anyone ever...I try to not let my mind go there too often, because as a parent it is pretty much the unthinkable. But,'s there. I do think sometimes it is attention seeking for sure. I think the trampoline issue might be a SPD issue like aquinas mentioned above because he doesn't do it except in that highly gross motor type of situation. I think once he gets gross motor going, he can't stop it and modulate it. I'm a PT so I kind of deal with this type of thing with my job also. In any event, I get that...his threshold is definitely way lower than ours for many things. I'm hoping getting him back into OT will help us work on some of the sensory things, and I like the idea of some sort of play/social therapy. Since he is in this window of time where his behavior is still malleable, before that magic age of 8...I would like to bring in all the resources we can. He has so much potential...I see it every day and it is sad that he can't let that side show more. Most importantly, aside from his parents, he has a loving adult in his life (his teacher) who believes in him and he responds well to her. She treats him differently than possibly even I do, and he behaves for her. I am in disbelief, because all teachers before threw their hands up in the air and conference after conference were at a loss for what to do. But she GETS him...He even told me "mommy, I wish you could be more like Mrs. J"....this really hurt my feelings but at the same time it made me realize I need to strive to do the exact same as she is doing for consistency. He then countered that by saying "but mommy, don't tell her that I told you that..." I think I expect total obedience every step of the way and when he gets flat out defiant I have a really hard time figuring out what to do next. Any parenting tips here?

    I do not want to defend him for the aggressive behavior. I guess I just always felt like the other kids were unfairly excluding him because of how "quirky" he is. I can't shield him from the ways of the world, I know that...and they aren't totally to blame for sure. He is just soooo incredibly sensitive.

    Another frustrating behavior that he has is that he has a hard time when I talk to other adults...when I drop him off and pick him up from school and talk to his teacher, he loses it. She says it is so odd because he will be having a fantastic day with her, no aggression, listening well, following rules. And as soon as I walk in the door he grabs his bookbag and throws it across the floor, starts yelling and acting loud and disruptive to cancel out what we are saying so we can hardly hear each other. Again, the totally opposite child thing. I feel this must be attention seeking, but it is incredibly frustrating. He does it sometimes when my husband and I are trying to talk to each other also. How would you address this? Simply telling him " you're being too loud, that hurts our need to go outside if you are going to be that loud...threatening to take away a privilege etc just falls on deaf ears. In these instances I am embarrassed and want to disappear. If you give him no attention and ignore him, he only gets louder and starts doing worse things to get attention like trying to break something he ordinarily wouldn't pay any attention to...It makes no sense to me and his teacher. We have started just doing brief drop offs and pick ups and that makes a world of difference. She even says, during the disruptive times during drop off once I leave and she gets him engaged he is a joy to work with and listens to her and works on his activities for hours and she has no trouble with him whatsoever. This is something he needs to work on though, because it happens at doctor's offices and places like that as well. I'm pretty sure the new doctor we got established with (since we moved) thinks he is full blown autistic. He didn't speak at all in the room to her, yelled and shouted over us while we talked...jumped from chair to chair like a lunatic and it made me break down crying...she is pushing for the psych eval but I know he is not usually like that! When the appointment was over he then started asking me tons of questions, conversing like a normal human and calmly walked out of the office like nothing had happened. It's times like that I just want to crawl under a rock. After episodes like that I explain to him why xyz was not appropriate and that he needs to allow adults to talk sometimes. He will say "I'm sorry mommy, I just didn't know what to do." Would you recommend getting him a tablet or something to curb his excess mind energy? His excuse a lot of the time is that he was looking for something to do. I have been trying to keep him unplugged mostly aside from some educational children's programming because I see so many kids addicted to it, but I am starting to think maybe during those "down time" moments I should have something like that to keep his brain engaged so that those behaviors stop being the norm? I need that insanity to is upsetting to his baby sister as well, who I am trying to teach how to properly behave and he is making it incredibly hard to show her correct examples. Ugh...

    So any help or insight is appreciated, no matter how harsh. We have to make some changes. My husband is on board totally also. Our whole family agrees something needs to be done about his behavior. It's just what exactly works for him, we simply cannot figure out. It would be nice to know if he is gifted, will help us understand him better...I just wonder about the other diagnoses also and those worry me more...

    #206252 - 11/21/14 05:31 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    kdoelit Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 11/19/14
    Posts: 32
    aquinas - I totally get you on the 1 year old shouldn't be on the trampoline but she is almost 2 and a very big almost 2 year old also. My 1 year old doesn't set foot on it because she isn't stable enough and shows no interest, but for some reason that other little girl is crazy coordinated and tries to keep up with the big ones so she lets her on there with supervision of course and a net all around

    His class being a home school program has only 7 kids ranging in age from 1-10. 4 of those kids being her own. Just in case anyone was wondering why he is around such young kids while at school. The twin 10 year olds are great role models for him though as they are gifted themselves but are very socially grounded well rounded boys. He enjoys working with them and I think they have much to teach him...She said they weren't always that way and he reminds her very much of how her boys were at his that gives me some hope also

    #206253 - 11/21/14 05:39 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    kdoelit Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 11/19/14
    Posts: 32
    And in response to the trampoline hitting when I asked why he did it he did say "she hit me first" but like others mentioned this could have been earlier in the day or obviously not intentional but interpreted as such by him....2 of the times were also during times that his teacher and I were trying to talk...the first time was not, however...but the second time she had just gotten done telling me how he had hit that child earlier on the trampoline but that he hadn't been allowed to jump all day...seemed to understand why this was inappropriate and was given a second chance. It's like maybe he heard us talking about it, the thought came into his head again and he couldn't push the impulse away to hit her again right then. He already has such trouble behaving when we talk to each other already...I don't know, there are multiple angles to look at this and I don't want to over analyze it.

    His other excuse was that he was hungry. Sounds strange, yes...but I have noticed if his blood sugar is getting low he can start getting grumpy and lashing out so I have to make sure he has access to healthy snacks all day long

    #206258 - 11/21/14 07:36 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    aeh Offline

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 4034
    If you think the disruptive behaviors at pickup are attention seeking, you could try preemptively giving him attention when you first walk into the classroom, before you address the teacher. Also, I would not be surprised if he is bothered by the perception that you are talking about him in front of him, and he is not part of the conversation. Children have so little control over their lives on a day to day basis; listening to someone discuss your fate without your input just highlights that lack of agency. It might be worth investigating whether that is a factor. If it is, you could look for ways to give him some level of participation in the decision-making process, or at least a chance for his voice to be heard. And respected.

    I have one who is extremely protective of this sense of agency, and has been since six months old. Also not particularly trusting of others. (Not distrusting either; just reserving judgment. ). We have to be discerning about talking to others about this child, when in earshot.

    I forget which thread it's in, but the physical needs factor in behavior has been extensively discussed elsewhere, so it's certainly not a strange idea.

    And one more thought: some of you may be familiar with the marshmallow test, as a measure of impulse control and maturity. Well, there's a variant of it, done in slightly older children, which found that successful impulse control had some correlation to the child's experience of their environment as being reliable and consistent. If the experimenter first kept a promise, children held out much longer on the marshmallow than if the experimenter first disappointed them in something else.

    A consistent, reliable environment gives children a better basis for impulse control and delayed gratification.
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

    #206266 - 11/21/14 08:32 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    kdoelit Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 11/19/14
    Posts: 32
    Good point, I do believe that maybe I talk too much about him while in earshot. He may be a few feet away fiddling with something and appearing not to be paying attention, but I bet he is listening to every detail. It's tough because sometimes we do need to talk about things. I will try just reserving those conversations for phone or text/email. We like to bounce ideas off of each other but I know that may be counter productive. Lots of times it is positive things, like "he totally figured out how to read today!" and doting over his achievements...which maybe he doesn't like either. I don't get many opportunities to talk to her when he isn't around because we also have become friends and do things outside of school with all of the kids as a group too. So he is always with me when I am with her. We may need to set up some times to meet and discuss him in depth. Maybe he has heard us talk about him some before so he starts yelling to prevent any more talking? He did tell me once "don't talk about me with Mrs.J" so I know he is sensitive to this...I will make a conscious effort

    On that note, how do you go about having doctor's appointments when behavior and such needs to be discussed? I bet that is what he didn't like about the last appointment and why he started acting so out of control...I would like to have a chance to talk to this doctor one on one without him present, but they of course are going to want to see him also...what have ya'll done? I don't want him to think he has a problem.

    #206268 - 11/21/14 08:39 PM Re: Suspected gifted 4 year old...what do I do? [Re: kdoelit]
    bluemagic Offline

    Registered: 03/29/13
    Posts: 1489
    If you need to talk with the doctor without him in earshot call the doctors office and mention tell them you want a chance to talk with the doctor without your son present. You may be able to talk on the phone, or perhaps they will set a meeting. Unless they have seen them recently, they might want to meet your child before or afterward. And they might charge for such an event.

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