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Old 08-13-2012, 04:01 PM
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Unhappy The DCB who can't make a decision

This is another thing that I haven't seen before. I have a DCB-4 who cannot make a decision about anything without having a total meltdown. I mean to the point where he is on the floor screaming his head off saying he doesn't know what to do. It starts as soon as he gets to school. He comes in smiling and happy but when Mom leaves, it begins. "I don't know what center to go to". When he finally picks a center, "I don't know what toy to play with". If more than one child asked to play with him, "I dont know who to play with". Even something as simple as "Do you want chocolate milk" causes a total meltdown.

I have talked to both parents about this and they said it happens at home as well. At home, it's so bad that when he's about to have a meltdown, he just goes to his room and screams there. They don't know what to do. I told them that I don't want to tell him what to do every minute of the day because I want him to learn to make his own decisions and to learn from any wrong choices he makes. They totally agree. Where we at a lost is what can we do to stop this.

He also has no problem solving skills at all. Anytime he runs into a "road block", he has a meltdown. Prime example: When it is time for snack, I ask the children to go to their chairs when they finish washing up. If his chair isn't at the table, he will have a meltdown crying that his chair is not at the table. I ask him, "Well, what should you do"? This immediately makes the situation worse because he will go into full on tantrum because he doesn't know what to do. It's not like we don't go through this every single day. Even during storytime, if I ask "What should So and So done differently in the story" he freaks out because he simply cannot decide on another option. Even lunch is a problem.

I have a consistent schedule so it's not a free for all where there is something different everyday. I just can't understand it. I've been doing childcare for almost 20 yrs and I have never seen this. Thanks in advance for your advice.
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Old 08-13-2012, 05:59 PM
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Personally I wouldn't even offer to let him make his own decisions. With the chair example: "Your chair isn't there. No problem. Go get it from the playroom (or whatever)" in a matter-of-fact tone.

This tends to work well with my overly emotional preschooler girls .

"Go to the block center and build a tower." "Here's your chocolate milk." etc.
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Old 08-13-2012, 06:05 PM
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Yeah, I agree with pp. He seems to have a bit of anxiety, so unless there's a reason for him to make a decision, do it for him for a while. If he complains about not getting choices, then start him slowly.

When he does make a choice, appreciate that about him. "I know choices are hard for you. You made that quickly".

When he starts to roll his eyes at that, you know you did your job.


BTW: my friend's daughter (now 12) struggled with that. She has since been diagnosed with OCD (after nearly starving herself for fear of germs at 8), and is on a mild anti-depressent. Thankfully, that has helped her enormously, and she functions more typically. I'm just saying that sometimes there are issues, and it may take a while to figure out whether his thing is attention seeking or a real issue. Just support him were you can without rewarding the behavior.
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:24 PM
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When it gets to the point where I make the decision for him, another melt down because it's not what he wanted to do. It's a darned if you do, darned is you don't situation. At first, we thought he maybe overwhelmed in my class but he did the same thing when he was in the 3's class. I think the parents want to have him checked out by a doctor but what could the doctor say?

I don't believe it's a control issue because when I give him the opportunity to take control, he won't.
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bookworm View Post
I think the parents want to have him checked out by a doctor but what could the doctor say?

I don't believe it's a control issue because when I give him the opportunity to take control, he won't.
I think it would be a good idea if the parents spoke with their pediatrician about the boy's behavior and honestly, I'd encourage them to do it. If the dr. believes there is reason for concern, he may refer the boy to a psychologist for further evaluation.
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e.j. View Post
I think it would be a good idea if the parents spoke with their pediatrician about the boy's behavior and honestly, I'd encourage them to do it. If the dr. believes there is reason for concern, he may refer the boy to a psychologist for further evaluation.
I agree.
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Old 08-14-2012, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bookworm View Post
When it gets to the point where I make the decision for him, another melt down because it's not what he wanted to do. It's a darned if you do, darned is you don't situation. At first, we thought he maybe overwhelmed in my class but he did the same thing when he was in the 3's class. I think the parents want to have him checked out by a doctor but what could the doctor say?

I don't believe it's a control issue because when I give him the opportunity to take control, he won't.
Wow! Now that sounds EXACTLY like my friends daughter at that age....

Does he ever refer to himself in the third person or eat wierd stuff, like paper? Just wondering...
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Old 08-14-2012, 04:26 PM
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Wow! Now that sounds EXACTLY like my friends daughter at that age....

Does he ever refer to himself in the third person or eat wierd stuff, like paper? Just wondering...
He doesn't do anything like that but he is a very picky eater. When I see Mom in the morning I will tell her that I agree he should see the doctor. Thanks ladies for the help.
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