Is it erratic, pre-teen hormones, or perhaps just my son’s particular brand of Asperger’s that has brought on an overwhelming load of negativity into our home the last few years? He astounds me by what he can find to whine about. And whine he does. This is draining, to say the least. I know many of his outbursts stem not from behavioral issues, but from a real sense of frustration and overstimulation. Many still believe that people on the spectrum do not experience a variety of emotions, or that they cannot sense what another is feeling (theory of mind). This is just not accurate. I see with my son that he feels too much, at times. His feelings are bumping into one another, and he has no method of categorizing them.. So, frustration ensues. Unfortunately, he has also allowed himself to develop the habit of lashing out with no real filter on his speech. And much to our chagrin, he does this almost exclusively at home.
How do I teach him to handle anger or frustration? What do I do to model a calm spirit even when I don’t like what is going on around me? Well, apparently, this past Monday, I yell back. I threaten. I lose my patience and exacerbate the problem until he no longer understands what he was upset about to begin with. How is it possible to exhibit patience and peace when you are being sorely tested on a regular basis by a pre-teen about to explode?
We both need peace of mind.