That was the big question I was asking myself at the beginning of the six weeks holiday. Do I let my ‘keen to know everything’ daughter our plans for the school holidays?
I know all too well what its like. Once you let the cat out of the bag, you don’t hear the end of it, with the same questions circling day after day. So first off, I went with “We have some things planned but I will tell you nearer the time (like an hour before!)” This didn’t go down too well. We had attitude and meltdown of how bad this holiday was going to be, how it would be the worse ever, I was a rubbish mum…. you get the picture.
So, after an hour or so, I switched tactic, thought ‘sod it, can’t be any worse than this’ and decided to tell the kids a couple of the things we were doing. BIG mistake!
Of course, they were overjoyed to hear that our friends would be visiting from Wales in four weeks time and that we would be visiting my brother and family down in Poole. It felt like we’d done the right thing. Until it started. The constant questions.
What time are they getting here? What are we doing? Will the boys play with me? What will we eat? How many nights are they staying? Are the boys going to leave me out? Will you ignore me? What are we going to eat on Saturday? What will I say when they get here? Will you be happy? What time will I be going to bed? What time will we get up? Are you excited? I’M EXCITED! (whilst looking stressed right out!), on Friday will we do…. on Saturday will we do ….. etc, etc, etc.
Since the holidays started, we have seen a big increase in the stress and anger Ellie is experiencing on a daily basis. When we try and go anywhere, if she doesn’t like it in the slightest, it will result in a meltdown/getting angry and stroppy and us wondering why the F*** we bother. To be honest, its made us have a very low key holiday this year, mainly meeting up with friends and family and chilling at home. I can’t help but feel envy, when I see lots of family snaps on social media of families doing exciting things, thinking there is fat chance we’d be able to do that because its too busy, too loud, etc etc!
The last two weeks have been pretty horrendous. Nightly meltdowns of crying and screaming, saying things she clearly doesn’t mean which is then followed by her writing a letter of apology. Now, I know you’re thinking… that’s really good…she has the thought process to write her feelings down and express them. However, when this happens every time, every day and nothing changes, you kinda lose your enthusiasm for it!
In the final days of last week, I’d adopted a new tactic. When behaviour was ‘not acceptable’ (as Supernanny would say!) Ellie was asked to go to her room for 12 minutes to calm down, have some quiet time and think about how she speaks to people (or whatever the problem was). Whether this is the right thing to do or not I don’t know, but it at least gave us all some breathing space.
So, Friday came around and our friends were due to arrive around 5pm. To help matters a little, I told Ellie that they were arriving at 6pm, so at least that gave me an hour’s buffer to allow for traffic!
As expected, there were a few wobbles over the weekend, worrying about being included, losing her temper with her brother etc, etc but it wasn’t anything like the build up we had experienced… though I’m sure there were other hormone factors playing a part there (see previous blog!). I didn’t let myself get too worked up… just did a lot of deep breathing and smiled!
So, we survived it.. and had a lovely weekend catching up with our friends, eating, drinking, chilling and had a couple little trips out with the kids and the dog! It really did George good as he could have some proper ‘boy time’… he has to put up with a lot as well and it was lovely to see him running around and getting all rough and tumble! But now we are back to Monday, and already the questions have started for our next trip!!
Until next time,
Love & hugs xxxx
2 thoughts on “To tell or not to tell? Is it best to keep plans a secret or not?”
Kudos for you being able to stay calm when so many things are going on at once and the questions are never ending! I have 3 autistic boys and they always want to know what’s coming next. Their anxiety over their routines changing presents in different ways. My middle son constantly repeats questions. Say my mom is coming to pick them up to go to the movies..”Is grandma coming? When is grandma coming? Is grandma bringing me to the movies? Will I get popcorn?” And if those plans change and grandma can’t come…disaster. So if it’s something happening on the day, I wait until the person comes so it’s a surprise. And if anyone in the family starts to talk of who’s coming for him I motion at them, trying to get them to change the subject, or move the conversation in a different way. My oldest is nonverbal, so he types his requests on a speaking device, if that’s not available he’ll write, sign, or try to say it. Thanks for sharing!
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Thank you so much for your message Tiffany. That motion thing… I do that too! Usually a slicing motion across the neck!
Three AS boys must be so exhausting, you are one super mum.
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