Single Moms Raising Autistic Sons

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Thursday, August 17, 2006

Sleep Difficulty and Not Leaving the Apartment

I have decided that I would just take a break from giving Griffin the melatonin for about a week and see what happens when we start it back. I have been told that it should help make a difference. I went to the local health foods store and talked to the owner and she was quite helpful in that she recommended this tablet called Calm Child that has a mixture of several different herbs and vitamins/minerals in it to promote calmness (is that a word?). Anyhow, it does seem to help calm him before bed though it doesn't knock him out or rather help him to get sleepy. I have been enjoying some respite as Stephanie has been coming each evening and watching Griffin for me. I haven't done anything that great but it is just nice to have some alone time and peace and quiet outside the home. Griffin went to swimming yesterday and did a great job. I was just grateful that I got him out of the apartment because I have had some difficulty in getting him to leave the apartment lately. He does the limp noodle and he is too big for me to be able to pick him up and move him so for 2 days in a row he didn't leave the apartment. I have tried everything literally and could not get him to cooperate. I would appreciate any suggestions because maybe you can think of something that I haven't tried. I was able to get him out of the apartment this morning to go to my therapy session. It seems that it is easy to get him out of here if it is first thing in the morning before he is engaged in play but once he is into something I can just about forget trying to take him out of the apartment. I hope that this trend will end soon and that I can get him intersted in the reinforcers that I used to use that once worked. Tomorrow we have speech in the morning and OT in the afternoon so I am pretty sure that I can get him out in the morning and once we are out I will just stay out until it is time for OT. I will keep you posted.


Mom to Mr. Handsome said...

Is there anything outside of the home that he likes to do? For example, seeing the pets at the pet store? Or maybe a small cone from McDonalds? If he goes_____ he can have_____. Going places with both of mine go much smoother if there are rewards along the way. If they sit well in the car, they can have a small snack, pick out fruit snacks for the week at Meijers if they sit well during grocery shopping and after checking out, they can get a "penny ride on the horse" in the store.

Griffin likes to play on the computer, maybe give extra computer time if he leaves the house without a struggle. Just an idea. I hope it all works out.

Take care,

NebraskaMommy25 said...

Im so glad you tried Calm tablets - they work really well! I am thinking of starting Gage back on them to see how he does. All I can think of for the house issue is bribery - can you stop by a place he really likes going, or maybe entice him out with sidewalk chalks or bubbles or something? As a last resort you could give him the really tiny Mini M&M's one at a time in about 15 minute inciments during your outing, and let him know that if he is good he will get another M&M. Hope that helps, I am otherwise out of ideas! Good luck!

Melissa H said...

I know that this sounds really mean, but when Conor does the limp noodle stuff, I tell him, "You can walk or Mommy can drag you." And, I will literally drag him on the ground. He usually gets up pretty fast and walks on his own. We actually had that today when leaving school because he wanted me to carry him. I told him that he was a big boy and needed to walk. He fell on the ground and I told him that he could walk or Mommy could drag him, his choice. He got up and walked. He complained all the way to the car, but he walked! :-)
Each child is different, so that might not work with Griffin.
Let us know how he does on the Calm Child. The melatonin and getting worn out at school is giving us all a good night's rest around here!

Lora said...

Thank you all for your suggestions I am going to try all your techniques and I will write about it in my next post. You are all life savers, it helps to know that you care so much and that you support me and give me words of encouragement. Thanks again

Sam I Am said...

Oh yes, I too know the limp noodle routine. Happens daily for us for some reason or another, and I too resort to Melissa's technique. I don't think it is mean, because they figure it out after awhile. Hang in there. I know you want to do natural and no meds, and we did that too for a year with no success. We broke down and started Clonidine last spring and really has made all the difference, his teachers at school report him functioning better. Sleep is so crucial to all aspects of development, emotionally and physically. Praying for some zzzzzz's for you. :(

mommyguilt said...

I, too, would go with the bribery and the choice of walking or dragging when the wet noodle happens. He doesn't do it very often anymore, but SmallBoy will have his days when he wants nothing to do with anything, even if it's something he likes to do. I've had to tell him that he either gets up and walks or pouts in defiance for a few and then gets up and walks. But, I will also echo the sentiment that each child is different, so if it doesn't work, don't get frustrated. We'll think of something else for ya!

Hugs for you & the G-Man!