Thursday, April 25, 2013

Lightening Strikes Again

Yesterday my oldest son went into a small rage. It’s been a long time since he’s done this, I can’t even remember the last episode. It was triggered by the bullying he faced at school earlier that day. A boy shoved him against a wall saying, “You wanna mess with me?” after the same boy tried to steal his drink and money earlier in the week.

We addressed the bullying with the school principal and today the school is going to look into it, but the stress was too much for my son to handle and he unfortunately took it out on us. At one point he cried out, “I can’t help it, it’s all because of what happened at school.”

I believe him.

He’s been doing so good lately. Just the day before I was hugging him in the kitchen and was telling him how proud I was of him. He’s become so much better at handling stress and making wise choices. But yesterday’s episode reminded me that he still has an illness inside and he’ll be struggling with this his entire life.

During the rage I became physically aware of something. My son is a lot stronger than his younger years,  he’s almost 100 pounds (I’m 113) and now he’s as tall as me. This complicates things.

When he was younger I could pick him up during a rage, but that’s not possible now. As he got older we were advised to move him out of the house so he could cool off on his own, thus de-escalating the situation. This has worked like a charm, but now that he’s bigger, getting him outside has become extremely difficult. Yesterday it was almost impossible.

I’m concerned about this as he gets older. Soon we’ll have to remove the entire family and let him rage alone in our home. I have visions of my son locking us out for hours like he did last summer, or attacking the car if we try to drive away. None of this sounds good. Instead I hope that as he continues to mature, he’ll gain more self control and he’ll be able to deescalate without our enforcement. But yesterday reminded me that we’re not there yet.

After the rage was over my son fell asleep. The surge of chemicals ran their course and my son returned to me once again. It’s moments like these when I have to focus on all the progress we’ve made and know that the road ahead will still have some ups and downs. We’ve come a long way and one episode doesn’t take that away.


7 comments:

  1. Hugs to you and famiy. The rages are the hardest on me.My 16 year old bipolar daughter had a rage last night too. She was fine all day, we were all laughing and having fun then her she felt her 12 year old brother took her lollypop and she flipped. She started screaming then hit him hard. She then was uncontrollable for about 45 minutes and at one point was talking to someone not there. I have never seen her so delusional. My husband got her to finally calm down. When it is over, she acts like nothing happened. I am still upset over it this morning. Her hitting her brother really bothers and concerns me. Living with someone who has this disease is so hard.

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    1. Thanks Kristen, hugs to you too. It still surprises me how fast they can flip. My son was screaming too with no control over himself, it feels like a train running through the house and everyone is trying to stay out of the way.

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  2. Have you ever thought about the days before and/or after the full moon having any effect on your kids' moods? I have started to intentionally notice so that I am prepared for, and therefore react better, around that time period with my family.

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    1. That's very interesting, I have wondered that myself!

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    2. That is interesting. My son didn't have a rage yesterday, but he was off all day. He seemed aggravated and irritable.

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  3. It's so easy (so desirable) to embrace the good times with a "We Solved It!" perspective, though we all know this sort of thing is not actually solved. I am very sorry that you had a rough day. Our son is almost as tall as me and might already weigh as much as I do (or close enough that there is little way short of hurting him to physically coerce him) so I completely understand your concerns.

    You are not alone. Though we may never meet, we are all in this together.

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    1. Thanks Halbert! I agree with what you shared about feeling like "we solved it", it can be easy to slip into that.

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