The upturn – Dealing with a child with behavioral issues: Our Journey with the Total Transformation #12

The funniest thing happened this week.  Littlest Dude was preparing to spend the day at a friend’s house.  We sat together and reviewed the lesson on how to not get angry, and what to do if he feels something’s unfair.  We practiced the anger relief method the “help line” coach suggested.  I kissed him on the head, and sent him on his way.

After Daddy picked him up quite a few hours later, they both walked in the door laughing.  Apparently, Littlest Dude’s friend got mad at his sister, and started beating her up and pulling her hair.

Littlest Dude intervened and made him stop.

Did you get that?  Littlest Dude did not jump on the bandwagon with his BEST FRIEND.  He made the right choice, and helped someone, even though it might not make him popular with his friend.

The little boy had to go to his room for a time out, and Littlest Dude played with the sister for a while.

Oh!  I love hearing wonderful things (Less than a month ago he was thrown out of a friend’s house by the father for acting out) What a wonderful change!


Last night while I was reading a funny book before bedtime, Littlest Dude got a little excited and kicked me in the kidney.  OUCH.  It knocked the wind right out of me.

“I am such an idiot,” he said, but not at the loud decibel that he normally would have… almost like it was a pre-programmed saying that popped out on his mouth.  He then jumped up and ran out of the room, and came back with an ice pack.

Pretty good problem solving, huh?  Instead of yelling about what he’d done, he found a way to “fix it.”

I used the ice, and continued the story.  Everyone won.


The last lesson:  The Workshop DVD.

I must say that I realize we are at a critical juncture right now.  I’m not getting friction from my kid, I’m getting resistance to continue from my husband.  My fear is that if we stop focusing on the program, that everything will slip back to the way it was.  I cannot cave in and allow us to slip up now.

Despite pre-arranging time to do the DVD, and my husband agreeing to do it at an exact time… He forgot and started planning all these other things he wanted to do.  Now watching the DVD was “in the way” of getting things done, and we had a fight about it.  He got really angry when I used the lessons against him “I’m sorry that you made other plans, but this is what we agreed on.”

I must admit, that I fell into my “negotiator” role and agreed to only do part of it, since it was 1.5 hours long.  We watched only the first two lessons.

(And if you read this dear, I love you and I understand that you have so many other responsibilities and you are totally right that there is not enough time in the day to do everything that we need to do… but this is working, right?  Aren’t you glad we kept going?) 

To be honest, the DVD isn’t all that great.  It would not make me want to go to one of the live seminars.  What we both agreed was good about it though, is that it reviewed the lessons in a very high-level way.  What we got the most out of was when we stopped the DVD and said “I tried that and this happened” or “That really worked for me” or “That didn’t work for me”.

I found out that he had been using the program a lot more than I had realized, and where I had trouble with some things, he had success– so we discussed that.  I highly doubt we will finish the DVD this week, but even if we keep our once a week slot and discuss things, I think it will keep us on track.

29 responses to “The upturn – Dealing with a child with behavioral issues: Our Journey with the Total Transformation #12

  1. Loving that the program is still working so well for you. Keep it up! 🙂

  2. It’s so fascinating following this process. Good work, guys (and dudes)!

  3. It’s wonderful to read about your son’s successful play date and his improved problem-solving skills. I think the coping methods you have been using are beginning to sink in, which is fabulous. Although it may be tempting, quitting the program now might be a mistake. It’s also great to read about how you and your husband are talking about what works and what didn’t. You are a team and need to remain on the same page. Congrats! 🙂

    • Thanks. It’s been a trying road, but overall, it really has not been all that long. It’s amazing what qualified attention can do to change a bad situation

  4. I would think that letting up now is similar to not taking all of a series of prescribed antibiotics just because you feel better, a recipe for relapse or for creating some form of superbug resistant bacteria. :O Stay the course! it sounds like he’s doing so well that your husband is tempted to reallocate priorities. I remember how desperate you were only weeks ago, so please stick to it. But I am in awe of your ability to see it through this far. Maybe your son will become a mediator. Wouldn’t that be a testament to your parenting?

  5. I am so thrilled for all of you. I am glad you found something that worked. If only I’d known then, when my 21 year old was just a wee thing.

  6. Way to go, Jennifer and family. I am excited for you. little Dude has stolen my heart.

    Celebrate each person in you family!
    Never Give Up
    Joan Y. Edwards

  7. Your commitment makes my day every time I read your posts. How many parents there are who just can’t face up to a problem with a child, or have the drive and insight to really work to solve it? AttaMom award for you Jennifer!

    • Thanks so much. Sometimes I’m in a store and I see moms struggling and I want to let them know they can take back their lives- but I know that a freaking out time is not a time for a parent to be thinking clearly.

  8. Love these updates! So proud of you and hubby for sticking to the program, and for Little Dude for his HUGE milestones~round of applause for everyone!

  9. Sometimes it’s easy to ease up after having some success with a difficult task—losing a few pounds, being better about exercise—anything, really. But maintaining success over the long haul is a lot harder. I’m glad you’re resisting the temptation to think, “everything’s fine now.” That attitude will really help everyone over time. So glad to hear you are seeing real success for your son!

  10. That’s awesome! Little Dude is turning a corner!

  11. You have really wowed me with your commitment to this, and I say that as a mother and a pediatric health care provider. Some children challenge even the best of parents, and seeing you take such active measures to get him on track, especially considering how time-consuming it is (24/7 really), impresses me. If only all parents would do so, then more kids would have a fighting chance in this tough world. He may not look back and remember how much you invested in this, but he’ll live his life better as a result.

    Hang in there! What you’ve accomplished this far is amazing.

  12. I’m tickled the little guy has picked up the ball and running with it. A HUGE step. Warms my heart. Wonderful news. Keep up your GREAT work!

  13. Even if you stop listening to the DVDs, won’t you still be able to apply what you have learned? It sounds like your son has internalized enough of this to make a big change in his life.
    I’m skeptical of these types of programs, but the changes you have worked to make happen are encouraging.

    • I was skeptical too– but desperate. I still find it a little hard to believe that this stuff works. Most of it seems ridiculous. But for some reason it works for kids with this “challenge”

  14. So great! He’s mediating and resolving for others now, wow!

  15. Keep going – this is such good news despite the hiccups.