Lately, parenting has been harder than usual for me. I can never tell if I’m having a hard time, therefore my daughter is as well, or if she’s having the hard time, and I’m incapable of finding a deeper well of patience to draw from. My frustration level with sensory-seeking and defiant behavior feels to be at a low. Meanwhile, we’ve all noticed a ramping up of these behaviors at home… louder, rougher, repetitive behaviors… a driving need to make a mess… a knee-jerk “no” reaction when reminded to do something routine, like wipe up a spill or put away a dish.
I know other parents of special-needs and/or trauma-affected children can relate. There are just times when I feel woefully inadequate at coping with it. I’m very sensory-avoidant, and I have a loud, rough, high-energy child. This can sometimes result in my shutting down, rolling into a prickly ball, and yes, yelling at my kid all day.
I really hate yelling at my kid. I feel out of control. I feel taken over by rage and sensory-overload, unable to behave the way I know I should. Or even the way I truly want to. It doesn’t feel like me, and wow, I guess that’s exactly what she feels like when she’s out of control!
The thing is, I feel so at a loss as to how to change things. Naturally, I want her to just be different. You know, just stop making noises, just stop yelling, just stop making messes. That would be easiest for me. But she can’t do that, so how do I cope? How do I get my calm back?
How, how, how do I enjoy being a parent again???