The Preemptive Tantrum Attack

This morning was emotionally rough, at least for me.  I did get up early and take care of myself first.  I went and got the clean laundry upstairs, so that everyone could get dressed without asking me where anything was.  Yay!

I presented it as fact that my oldest was going to school today.  He tried to tell me he’s sick like he did yesterday, and I simply gave him medicine for his cough and said he’s going to school.  I finally talked to his therapist last night, and she very nicely told me that I’m coddling him and to send him to school.

I do agree that he was avoiding the test, and avoiding the bullies at school, but I’m annoyed that he doesn’t have the tools to cope with them.  And basically, I feel like everyone’s telling me that all I can do is push him out into the world so he’ll learn how to cope.  I’ve been doing that for years now, and I end up with a sad, anxious kid to cope with.  Thanks y’all.

I really did try to prepare my oldest to go to school, try to review the coping strategies he can use to get through his test.  But he really didn’t want to listen.  When I finally got him to come and sit at the table and talk to me, his little brother decided that it was time to run around the table and play with the dog.  (He’s part tornado, did I mention that?)

Once I kicked the 8 year old upstairs to brush his teeth and finish getting ready, the 10 year old, whom I’m trying to help, is sitting at the table crinkling the wrapper of his snack.  Crunch, crinkle, crinkle, crunch, crunch.

Gone….too much…one crunch too many….I lost it.  And, while I didn’t scream, I did snatch the granola bar from him and make a noise that indicated pretty well, that Mom had a very loose grip on sanity.  I almost calmly said, “Talk over!  You don’t want to talk.  Go brush your teeth!  Go find your shoes!  Get. Out. Of. My. Kitchen.”

His brother helped him find his shoes, he went to school, and he didn’t throw even one tantrum.  He couldn’t, because I had one for him.  

There wasn’t enough room for TWO tantrums in that kitchen.  My tantrum was quiet and I tried not to cry on the turkey sandwich I was making for lunch.  But I think I was clear that I was the crazier of the two, and he backed down.  Standardized test is far less scary than crazy mama.

Interesting technique.  Preemptive tantrum used as tantrum prevention.  Yeah, I meant for that to happen, I planned it that way.