Our 6 weeks off have come to an end and they have been relatively meltdown free.
What is a meltdown? Isn’t it just a tantrum?
One of the main differences between a
meltdown and a tantrum is that tantrums usually have a purpose, for example, if the child wanted an ice cream and you said no this would result in a tantrum as the desired outcome would be for you to give in and the child would get an icecream. A meltdown is usually a result of factors the person has no control over. You can stop a tantrum if the child gets what they want.
How did we keep it relatively meltdown free?
Well, if you follow us on social media you will know that just before the summer holidays our Finn was excluded from school twice. Once for smashing the classroom up and then for hurting a teacher. Both of which happened during a meltdown, which he cannot control.
This means that he can’t just go into school on the first day of term like normal children, we will have to go in after everyone has gone in, sit in a room and be spoken about by adults and then go into his class after.
So, of course off the back of the awful behaviour at school we were dreading having him home for the 6 weeks! I didn’t want my house smashed to bits. Or his siblings hurt.
But it never happened. Maybe because at home we work with him, he has clear firm rules and if we are going to do anything different he has plenty of warning.
I have to admit, we haven’t really done anything spectacular during this school holidays this year, mainly because of money. I also tore my MCL and Cartilage in my knee so i haven’t been mobile or able to drive for 3 of the 6 weeks.
We have been swimming a lot, visited the Blue Reef Aquarium in Hastings, went to Dreamland in margate and visited family and friends.
Don’t get me wrong, we’ve had a few tantrums. Mainly fights over iPad use. But then the meltdown happened!
Here is what triggered it:
We had decided to take the girls and Finn to mini golf with my cousins 3 kids who are similar ages to my girls. We got 17 holes out of 18 without incident then all hell broke loose! Cousins oldest son, who had been playing with Finn the whole way round accidentally kicked Finn’s ball straight into the final hole which retains the ball, and that was it. Total fluke, huge meltdown. Screaming, Breath holding, he was inconsolable. Sometimes when he has a meltdown you can talk him round and redirect him but this time it wasn’t going to happen.
After a 10 minute screaming meltdown, parents looking and tutting, commenting and saying horrible things the lovely girl in the ticket office gave him a new red ball and said he could go again. Had he of hit his original ball into the hole it would’ve been fine. But it was a freak accident, wasn’t done in malice as the kids all get on really well and they all love their little cousin.
I always feel like an awful parent when Finn melts down in public. It always feels like I’ve let him down. I could’ve seen factors which could’ve caused it, but it is so tiring!
However, looking at the 6 weeks the kids have been off, and the 1 significant meltdown he has had in the whole of the 6 weeks, I feel we have triumphed. A small victory in an ongoing battle in which we will never win.
Then it begs to question. If we can keep him so calm here then why is he melting down so severely every day at school! I don’t know.
This last picture is 5 minutes post meltdown. He is a bit red and a bit sweaty. But he is fine!