Tears of Frustration: Party of 2

While a majority of my days with Oliver reflect growth and happiness, today was one of the  off days. I always try my best to keep my cool; I aim to be persistent, understanding, and encouraging for him.

He is still drinking from bottles, despite working on it in his autism class (and his occupational therapist and at home with me). When he isn’t biting off the tips of the nipples, he is shaking and/or pressing it into the floor to make it all spill out. After yet another puddle this morning, I took it away and gave him a sippy cup and figured if he got thirsty enough he would drink from it. This was not the case.

He is also still having issues with feeding. He’s allergic to a lot of different foods (see my post on “Allergy Test” to read about his allergies) and also happens to be extremely picky. In addition to feeling the need to give him his sippy cup, I also decided that he was going to attempt GFCF waffles, carrots, rice crisps, and almond cheese this morning. I know that one food needs to be introduced at a time, but I have been attempting to introduce foods slowly for so long now with little to no success (aside from the single occasion where he took a bite out of a carrot a few weeks ago). I woke up feeling determined, so I went with it and hoped for the best. He ate all of the cheese and rice crisps (yay!) and then cried when I tried to feed him the waffles. After two attempted bites of waffle, I tried the carrot out and he just kept trying to throw it on the floor.

After cleaning up and washing dishes, he signed that he wanted a bottle. I sat him down and told him that he would need to drink from his sippy cup if he was thirsty. He proceeded by throwing it on the floor. As time passed, I attempted more non-fruit/carb foods and then eventually caved and gave him his beloved toast, fruit, and cereal. Throughout the next couple of hours, he cried between hitting me, hitting himself, throwing himself onto the ground, flipping his table over, knocking the baby gate over, and breaking his nana’s crystal window hanging — all because he wanted his bottle. I knew that if he was truly thirsty and not just wanting a bottle nipple to bite off, then he would drink, so I stayed consistent with my word. The cries and hits began wearing on me before I caved yet again and fell into tears. I haven’t felt quite that frustrated in a while, so it was rather overwhelming. I want to stick with it so that he will learn that I mean business, but it becomes so stressful that all I can think about is how badly I want to end his meltdown by giving in. I know that cutting him off cold turkey probably isn’t the answer, but I have been trying for nearly one year and felt suddenly fed up with the lack of change in this area.

I took a deep breath and cuddled him, feeling like somewhat of a failure. I plan to touch base with his early intervention team on Monday, but for now, I wanted to share a tough excerpt from our day with all of you since I often forget to do so.

Have any of you dealt with this or something like this? I’d love to hear suggestions.

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7 thoughts on “Tears of Frustration: Party of 2

  1. SJ, your frustration is SO normal! I had days like this with my kids and they didn’t have autism. Some days are just difficult. As a mother and grandmother I would tell you that life is messy. I would tell you that just going with what he is comfortable with is not a failure on your part. Giving him the option of a sippy cup or a bottle is the right answer but if he chooses the bottle it shouldn’t surprise you. There will come a day when he will decide he wants the sippy cup. The messes are tiring, I get that, but he doesn’t. I remember my granddaughter didn’t eat anything but noodles or pancakes for the first five years of her life – really. It took me a year to get my son off a bottle. My point is, our timetables as parents seldom match that of our children’s regardless of conditions. If I had a dollar for every time I tucked my kids in bed and said “tomorrow I will do better”, I’d be sitting pretty. You are doing your best and on those days when you don’t feel like that cut yourself some slack. Be gentle and patient with yourself just as you are with your little guy. Tomorrow you can start again. Hugs!

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  2. Hi! My son has autism too. His name is ice. He is 8years old and non verbal. Thankfully we had no problem letting him drink from a bottle to a glass now since he does not like to drink in a bottle. When he was younger, during breakfast or lunch or dinner we would seat him on the table with us and give him his own plate with rice (as i am from the philippines 😊) and his favorite hotdog or chicken, and he would eat on his own regardless of how messy he could be. 😀 and a glass of water or iced tea on his side. I guess i am just lucky my mom helps me out with ice especially that im a single working mom. It’s really not easy raising a child with autism. Everyday is a challenge. Today at his age the only food he would eat are fried chicken, fish, hotdogs, and french fries. We cant get him to eat vegetables! We tried soooo hard till now but to no avail. With fruits he can only eat pineapple (thinly sliced), bananas, mangoes i guess thats it. Oh and he loves peanuts! 😊 We don’t force him anymore because it will just ruin his day and start a tantrum that never ends! Today, if me and my mom would like him to do something or want him to eat something, we would make sure he is in a good mood and first we show him how to do it or how to eat it. It helped you know. He would get curious! And do it. Or eat it. Though when it comes to food, if he doesnt like the taste or how the food looks, he would never eat it or he would vomit! 😢

    Now at his age i can already bring him to the grocery store but we had to bring extra money cuz he will also shop on his own!!! 😂 He will find his fav. milk, biscuit, chocolate, icecream, hotdog etc… He enjoys going to the grocery!!! Me and my dont! Haha! I guess exposing them to places you go to mostly would help. Ice isnt always like this. He easily gets bored when he was younger but when he got older the tantrums lessened. We exposed him to children. Made him play on the park with the other kids though he doesnt really play with them. Lol! But being surrounded with many kids or people helped him. We are Roman Catholics so we go to church. My mom would always bring him to the church with her every sunday. Before he would always run around the church and it is really a struggle as he wants to go to the altar with the priest! And the people would look at us. 😢 He would sing on his own, shout, start a tantrum and we would all go home. Today he can finish the whole mass for 1 hour without making a raucus! If its time to sit he would sit, stand, etc. He is a work in progress. Your oliver is a work in progress! Just believe! Nothing is impossible with these kids! It just takes time and more patience and more effort. And if you give in to him remember you are not a failure!!! Oliver may not be ready yet so give him time. Tomorrow the day after tomorrow try again! And one day you’ll just be surprised! 😊

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  3. Dearest love,
    You are a wonderful mommy for doing all these things for your son. He is so blessed to have you. Please do not loose heart. You will find a way forward with him and together you will find peace. I love you both very much and pray for you daily. Thank you so much for taking such good care of my grandson. He is in the best place possible for his journey through this life. You are amazing, please don’t forget that!
    Blessings and love,
    Erin

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