On Tuesday when my son stayed home he seemed really depressed so I let him go get the new Call of Duty game that day. I was really surprised that there were so many kids in that line instead of being in school! I was hoping that the game would cheer him up and in exchange he had to go meet with the case manager to discuss returning to school.
He played the game for about an hour before we had to go to the school. Even though he had an hour to focus on something else he was still upset when we went to the school. We sit down to discuss returning to school and my son puts his head on the table and refuses to talk. We tried to talk things out with the case manager offering accommodations and my son just says “I don’t care”. The case manager pushes and my son gets aggravated. I have a flashback to a time last year when a teacher mistreated him and he blew up at the teacher.
I start to intervene, asking if my son wants to do something to calm down. The case manager asks me if he can talk to him alone. I really struggled. I didn’t want to leave but I also know I can’t always be there and my son seems to really interact well with the case manager. Somehow I trust him and leave. I am standing in the hallway and I just keep thinking the case manager is going to come out to get me to say he shut down or blew up. I can’t see in the room because the windows are covered since it is a teacher’s lounge or meeting room or something. If not for my Zoloft I am sure I would have had a meltdown myself.
Finally the door opens. I take a deep breath. I am asked back in and my son is sitting up and seems okay. This alone is a big milestone for him (and me!).
The following changes/accommodations have been made (some discussed briefly before I was asked to leave but finalized while I was out):
1) He is to arrive at school at the beginning of 2nd period and he won’t be counted late.
2) Since 1st period was World History he will need to take it in a regular class room. We had previously discussed that this would be the first class that he would try in a regular class because he was really bored in the ED room. This change seems to actually make him happy. The case manager explained to me that my son is always asking the case manager to go more in-depth during lessons and the class is not set up for that type of discussion.
3) He is getting moved out of band class. Although band has meant a lot to him it has also caused him a lot of stress. They discussed that this may change in the future but for now no band.
4) The good part about not being in band is that Social Skills class is only offered at that time and now he will be in there. Clearly this is a good thing. My son is usually in the room eating lunch for part of the class so he knows he likes the class. The way it has been explained to me, they talk about stuff but they also do a lot of activities to actually model the appropriate behavior. Now he will also eat lunch with the other kids in the social skills class instead of eating by himself. They all eat in the class room together. Seems like a win-win to me!
He has now been in school for two days in a row! He was on time yesterday and about ten minutes late today for 2nd period. When asked he said the days have gone well. He also told me that the guidance counselor was in there yesterday during social skills class and they worked on a puzzle together. Maybe it is a good thing that band didn’t go well that day. I always try to remember sometimes things happen for a reason 🙂
Thank you again for your support. I REALLY hope that it continues in the right direction.