Sunday, September 12, 2010

Taming Tantrums: Professional #2 says...

After E's last nighttime meltdown, I went crazy looking for help. One of the resources I found was at the University's School of Education, where they have child (?) psychologists. We started seeing someone as a family, primarily for E's sleep issues, and secondary for how to cope with Elena's self-realizations regarding her disability.

The family counseling is going okay. I guess I say okay, b/c things at home are going pretty smoothly. I told the therapist that my end goal was to put E to bed, no problems. Meaning, I tuck E in, smooch, goodnight, leave. Everyone rests until we wake up the next day. If E has to get up for some reason (bathroom, etc.) she takes care of it herself and then goes back to bed herself.

RIGHT NOW, we are in such a good place...E goes to bed by one parent (usually me) tucking her in, smooch, then reading books. She falls asleep during the books (she isn't looking at them while we read, she's "resting her eyes and her voice"). Since school has started, normally it's a 5-10 minute reading session and that's it. Rarely, it's a 40-minute reading session. Some nights she needs help in the bathroom, but she gets there herself, and then we help finish up and then put her back in bed and read another book to her while she falls back asleep (but this hasn't happened in a while).

Comparatively speaking, this nighttime routine is NIRVANA. It's a world away from hours of screaming every night.

Well our therapist wants us to go for the end game. Tuck in, smooch, leave. I am extremely apprehensive...we've come SO FAR. Things ARE GOOD. The therapist says we need to Ferberize her for her own good (and ours). Deep down, sure, I think it would be better for her (and us) if we could get it to work. But why rock the boat when things are SO CALM?

I don't want to be negative...but you all get me.

1 comment:

Chrystie said...

We are struggling with bedtime routines a bit lately too. Ellie (same age as your E) is starting to cry over the smallest things, in an effort to keep us in her room longer (it *used* to be the tuck in, smooch, leave routine for us). I think a LOT of her issues are due to all the changes with school and routine, etc. Like your E, mine also went to pre-school, etc, but they obviously know that kindergarten is ramping it up and much more rigorous. I notice that E's crying is worse on the days where she has therapy. She's just SO.TIRED.

All of that to say that you're not alone! I voted "status quo", mostly because I am envying your bedtime routine if it includes only 10 min. of reading and no tears!