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Old 05-12-2020, 12:47 AM
 
289 posts, read 62,512 times
Reputation: 638

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I hear similar stories from coworkers who have children at home with two professional parents who need to focus on the job duties. You got great advice here from knowledgeable parents, but easier said than done right?

It makes me wonder if two obviously educated professionals who are able to hold down good jobs (good enough to do your work remotely anyway) are at wits ends, can you imagine how hard it would be for those who 1) cannot do their job from home and 2) who are not able to pay for childcare to raise the kid, especially a dysfunctional one? Hence this may be the root cause of many of society's problems involving child abuse and children who join the wrong crowds just to be included.

More parental education is needed and should be required - even for people like you and the wife.

The other day I saw the news about a homeless couple living in a park in my city. They seemed dirty and drugged up, etc. She made it a point to tell the interviewer that she was glad they let them stay in the downtown park because she's expecting a baby pretty soon.

Can you see the similarities? Neither you or the homeless couple are equipped to raise children. I think it's a rather blaring example. No offense intended, but having children is like having pets. They are an obligation. Give this kid up to the authorities and have them raise him. Otherwise, take a class, get counseling, or pay for a responsible nanny if you're unable or unwilling to do it yourself.

If I were a kid, I'd rather be poor and homeless with loving parents than be left alone. Regardless, both children will find life-long challenges but the one where the parents care is the one who has the advantages regardless.

Last edited by DaneThornberg; 05-12-2020 at 01:20 AM..
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Old 05-12-2020, 01:38 AM
 
17,760 posts, read 21,862,459 times
Reputation: 35999
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundaydrive00 View Post
You secretly helped? You need to stand up to your wife and be an advocate for your son. She threw toys at him?! Holy S... That is not okay. Hopefully these toys were stuffed animals and not anything hard that could cause serious physical harm.. Not that throwing anything is okay. It sounds like an extremely toxic environment for your son.




8:15-9:00 That's 45 minutes where he is alone
9:45-11 1 hour and 15 minutes he's alone
11:30 - noon is another 30 minutes
2-5 3 hours

So between 8 and 5, he is alone for 5.5 hours. Over half the day, he is on his own. That's a lot of time. And is someone with him all during his school work and lunch? Or is that just structured alone time? And where is he while you're making dinner at 5? Is that more time in the playroom, meaning it's more like 6+ hours he's just supposed to entertain himself in that room?

2 hours of school and 5.5 hours of alone time seem to be pretty unbalanced. Does he do well with his school work? Is he interested in anything? Art, gym, or library? I would try to at least find some more structures activities so he's not just in the playroom all day bored and getting into trouble.



Yes, I had to stop reading and scroll up to the thread count thinking it would be a first time poster.



Yup, I've even had interviews where the person conducting the interview (over zoom) had a kid on their lap. It's part of the new normal while we're all at home.
Exactly, when I read the second post I was hoping this wasn't a real thread, but the OP has been on here a long time.

Wow 5.5 hours, thank you for adding that up. This is starting to look like child neglect leaning towards abuse. We can only hope it was stuffed animals, and if it wasn't as you said could cause harm.

I find the OP's demeanor alarming. Maybe he is afraid of her. Helping the son secretly clean up the room, the rage she got in it's sounds like something out of "Mommie Dearest", and I am not trying to be funny. There are women who are abusive to their spouses and kids.

He needs to take action now, start with the child's doctor, and get some help in there.
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Old 05-12-2020, 03:38 AM
 
Location: Sydney Australia
713 posts, read 411,854 times
Reputation: 1108
I feel very sorry for your family and all the many many families around the world who have similar problems. My grandson is five and it has been really difficult for his family as he is almost ADHD. The eight year old can occupy himself and do his online lessons well. The five year old needs someone with him constantly. The parents are in professional jobs which often have required them to be in touch with people in other time zones so it is a nightmare.

Fortunately for them, as I am a retired teacher, and now our restrictions have lightened I was able to spend last week at his side. Very fortunately his private school have brought back the kindergarten grade full-time this week. They have prioritised the youngest and the senior year because they realise how inadequate online schooling is for children of that young age.

But what to do? I assume you do not have someone like me to assist or your regulations do not allow it (as they did not here for four weeks) My SIL was considering taking leave to get through. They did find a white board with a schedule written up helped. The kids have had a packed lunch ( as they normally take to school) to give them some continuity. Some of the parents at their school had hired a Nanny but of course there is a reluctance to do that in a pandemic. Most people can not afford it anyway.

I am also assuming your system does not have an ability to provide supervision for the children of essential workers? If they do you need to get in contact with the child’s school and they may bend the rules.

I just about cried when our state premier went against the advice of our Prime Minister and asked parents to keep the kids at home. I knew just how hard it was going to be and how some children were going to be abused and neglected. She has actually woken up to the dangers and is currently fast tracking the return of all kids by the end of the month.

If it makes you feel any better, I arrived at their place last week, quite tired myself. Daughter had been up til midnight working, SIL up from midnight to 3am. They were both on calls, the kids were due online in fifteen minutes and were procrastinating over their breakfast. SIL related how difficult Mr Five had been the night before etc and I ended up in tears. The day did improve as it went on but I can assure you your situation is not unusual. But you need some help one way or another.
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Old 05-12-2020, 05:55 AM
 
1,959 posts, read 567,322 times
Reputation: 1505
I think it’s ok for a 6 year old to be left alone to play independently in the yard or house as long as they’re safe. I keep seeing people say he shouldn’t be left alone because he’s 6. It’s not like they’re leaving the house, but they should be able to leave a room. At 6 kids should be able to put together legos, blocks, color, do a puzzle or heck look at an iPad. They’re not 2 or 3.
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Old 05-12-2020, 06:45 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
12,946 posts, read 12,917,379 times
Reputation: 10911
So, I heard you guys. Today I'm working in the playroom with him. I'm sure I'll get less done, but this way I can see if he does anything crazy - and hopefully he'll be a bit happier.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdieBelle View Post
He still needs guidance, discipline (which is NOT the same as punishment) and love. Giving a kid with ADHD a non-specific command like, "Clean this room!" is one of the worst things you can do.
I know. We went through PCIT and I understand that you're supposed to give direct commands one by one. We have this dynamic though right now where my wife creates these sort of unrealistic expectations for his behavior (like telling him to clean the playroom/his room all by himself and leaving) and then she needs to get back to work for a conference call or something - which means she leaves it up to me to actually enforce what she says. I'm a way more laid back parent overall (she has all these household rules I don't understand, like "no singing at the dinner table"). Regardless, I'd never give a command to do something like clean a room during the work day, because it would require an hour plus of active management of him in order to get it seen through - I think that cleaning is better left till the evenings or weekends.

Quote:
Originally Posted by veuvegirl View Post
As Germaine stated, you and your wife need to have a discussion with work. Most employers are much more flexible. It sounds to me as if you bit are expecting your son to make the sacrifice of unstructured time. You and your wife need to figure out how to manage it.

I can’t tell you how many meetings I am in and someone’s child is sitting in a lap or running in the background. It’s an entirely different world right now. I can’t imagine being in your shoes, but just leaving your son for hours isn’t the answer. He’s lashing out drastically and it will only get worse.
It's weird, because while my wife definitely "rules the house" she's always been very hesitant to be assertive with her employer. She's worked at the same firm for about 15 years now, is one step below partner, gets good performance reviews and bonuses all the time - yet she's always terrified the minute work gets a little slow she'll get laid off.


Quote:
Originally Posted by in_newengland View Post
You need some kind of intervention. These are hard times anyway but if only someone could play with him for a few hours. He sounds like he needs some physical activity to help him deal with the excess energy. Kids used to play outside--maybe play ball or some kind of physical activity. He doesn't sound like the quiet type of kid who will just sit there. Probably nothing wrong with that except that he isn't getting his needs met by being told to stay alone and be quiet. Not by getting yelled at either. He might do better if he could look forward to a couple of hours of outdoor activity every single day. To earn it, he needs to buckle down and do what is expected the rest of the time.

I hope there's a way someone can come over and play some sports with him or otherwise get him active and wear him out.
We tried to get him to spend some more time outside on Sunday when the weather was fairly nice (it's been cruddy here). He's holed up in the house a lot though, because unlike his sister he refuses to wear a mask when he goes outside, and we don't want him to get COVID-19.

I'll say I was very much like him when I was a kid - just as ADD and carelessly destructive, though not as angry, and a lot more self-reliant. I remember spending hours alone reading and playing with legos.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundaydrive00 View Post
You secretly helped? You need to stand up to your wife and be an advocate for your son. She threw toys at him?! Holy S... That is not okay. Hopefully these toys were stuffed animals and not anything hard that could cause serious physical harm.. Not that throwing anything is okay. It sounds like an extremely toxic environment for your son.
My wife is one of those people who believes she is in the right about everything. I can literally remember times when my wife has broken something - in front of me - and blamed me for it, then gotten furious when I wouldn't accept responsibility. We were in marriage counseling when my daughter was little, but things got better. Though I'll admit part of it is she's just shifted the yelling from being 100% directed at me to only 33% directed at me.

Frankly both my kids take after her when it comes to that, and are also very opinionated/argumentative/think things should always go their way. I don't think my own happiness is as important as trying to make everyone else in the household happy and minimize conflict, so I just try to put out fires however I can.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundaydrive00 View Post
So between 8 and 5, he is alone for 5.5 hours. Over half the day, he is on his own. That's a lot of time. And is someone with him all during his school work and lunch? Or is that just structured alone time? And where is he while you're making dinner at 5? Is that more time in the playroom, meaning it's more like 6+ hours he's just supposed to entertain himself in that room?
I am with him for all his online classes. He is ADD. I feel jealous of the other parents who have kids who will sit still during the videoconferences. He rotates the chair around, slumps down, gets up and walks away, etc. But when I'm there he constantly ignores his teacher/classmates talking, instead turning to me and talking over whatever is going on (so I have to mute the mic). Often I need to physically restrain him in order to stop him from wiggling away, and I'm always worried someone will see the camera and think I'm abusing him or something.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundaydrive00 View Post
2 hours of school and 5.5 hours of alone time seem to be pretty unbalanced. Does he do well with his school work? Is he interested in anything? Art, gym, or library? I would try to at least find some more structures activities so he's not just in the playroom all day bored and getting into trouble.
This is the curriculum the district put together. Kindergarteners do not get graded, but his teacher had no issue with his work, called him advanced, and was going to suggest him for gifted. His only real issue is his handwriting is terrible (and he can't draw really either - his drawings look like a kid half his age).

The 11:00 class is always some sort of enrichment thing (music/gym/art/library). By this time, unlike the 9:00 meeting, the Vyvanse has kicked in and he'll usually sit still, but he doesn't really want to participate in anything for some reason. Yesterday I finally cajoled him into clapping along a bit during music, which was the first time he did anything other than just sullenly sitting there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dysgenic View Post
I would make the 10yr old sister watch him for the alone time...i can't believe no one else suggested this.
I offered last night to double my daughter's allowance if she'd watch him during the afternoons. She said yes, but then my wife told me I couldn't do that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayekaye View Post
A six year in no way shape or form should be left alone. He is 6. You need to change your schedule yesterday and take care of your son. Ask your boss if you can have family leave, get laid off, take a leave, or take vacation/sick time. Or just quit. But do something now. Whether he is ADD, ADHD or not, he should not be left alone at all. Your wife is not right about his needs or discipline. Do you have any extended family that could move in and help out? If you will be in financial straits get public assistance. Figure something out. Your children are more important than this.
We typically relied upon the grandparents to provide support for us prior to all this going down. My mother has been in isolation due to COVID fears for like two months now, and hasn't seen the kids except through glass. My in-laws did come over this weekend for the first time in months. Actually my daughter spent the night over there and was thrilled to have an escape from all of us. Basically there was a family emergency the previous week where we had to help my wife's brother move out of an apartment and back into his parents. As a result, we were all cross-exposed anyway, so we figured having the kids see them right now wouldn't make much of a difference.
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Old 05-12-2020, 07:07 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
48,404 posts, read 46,677,077 times
Reputation: 94774
Quote:
Originally Posted by seain dublin View Post
I think it has gone well past "appear". Wife is getting violent.

Let's not sugarcoat, this needs to be addressed tomorrow.
I'm not known for sugar-coating here.

The OP knows this situation is bad. There's no need to pile on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dysgenic View Post
I would make the 10yr old sister watch him for the alone time...i can't believe no one else suggested this.
Probably because she's only 10 and she's not magic.

He has issues that she is not equipped to handle properly, no matter how much she's paid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bridge781 View Post
I think it’s ok for a 6 year old to be left alone to play independently in the yard or house as long as they’re safe. I keep seeing people say he shouldn’t be left alone because he’s 6. It’s not like they’re leaving the house, but they should be able to leave a room. At 6 kids should be able to put together legos, blocks, color, do a puzzle or heck look at an iPad. They’re not 2 or 3.
Well, he's been plenty busy when he's alone. Being able to occupy himself isn't the issue here. He's not a typical kid, and "leaving him alone" leads to his being destructive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post


My wife is one of those people who believes she is in the right about everything. I can literally remember times when my wife has broken something - in front of me - and blamed me for it, then gotten furious when I wouldn't accept responsibility. We were in marriage counseling when my daughter was little, but things got better. Though I'll admit part of it is she's just shifted the yelling from being 100% directed at me to only 33% directed at me.

Frankly both my kids take after her when it comes to that, and are also very opinionated/argumentative/think things should always go their way. I don't think my own happiness is as important as trying to make everyone else in the household happy and minimize conflict, so I just try to put out fires however I can.
This is bad, OP. You know that, right? This dynamic is not sustainable. You cannot sacrifice your own mental health to hold up a broken set-up. There's nothing heroic or even admirable here ^^.

You need family counseling immediately, and if your wife won't go, you need to go alone so that you can learn how to assert yourself in this relationship.

Right now you're both setting a very bad example for your kids, mainly your daughter, who will learn to placate others to avoid chaos. Or she'll likely feel that toeing the line and doing what she's told won't really matter, since negative behavior gets most of the attention in her house. So she probably will start mimicking her mom in order to feel some control in her life.

I appreciate that you've moved to the playroom today, but please understand that nothing else can take priority over this, for the long-term health of your family. Please call the pediatrician today.

Y'all aren't the only people going through this, but the approach of the adults in YOUR situation needs intervention immediately.
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Old 05-12-2020, 07:51 AM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
5,631 posts, read 6,032,207 times
Reputation: 14539
My heart hurts for these children.

OP, any chance you'll leave your wife and take the children with you? The yelling, the blow-ups, throwing things - you realize this is abuse, right? And while ensuring the well being of your children should be your priority, you need to look out for yourself as well - I believe she is abusive to you.

OP, please seek professional help for your children.
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Old 05-12-2020, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
48,404 posts, read 46,677,077 times
Reputation: 94774
Quote:
Originally Posted by HokieFan View Post

... you need to look out for yourself as well - I believe she is abusive to you.
Absolutely.

She has him walking on eggshells all day and night to keep her from blowing up.
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Old 05-12-2020, 08:37 AM
 
14,307 posts, read 5,903,511 times
Reputation: 33781
I don't see any exercise time in his day, or yours or your wife's? You mention he won't wear a mask outside, but does he have to? Are there areas in your community where he could run/ride his bike/walk with you a half hour a day?

Do you have a small trampoline? He can jump on the trampoline while watching his online classes, and my guess is he'd pay great attention.

Your wife sounds like the problem, in my opinion. If she were a little creative and loving it seems like the two of you could have come up with things he could look forward to during the day besides being alone in the playroom and being sporadically yelled at to break the monotony.
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Old 05-12-2020, 09:03 AM
 
Location: interior Alaska
4,941 posts, read 3,698,333 times
Reputation: 15701
Hire a babysitter who has experience with hyperactive children. And when your kids goes back to school, give his teacher a hell of a back-to-school gift.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dysgenic View Post
I would make the 10yr old sister watch him for the alone time...i can't believe no one else suggested this.
Unsafe and unfair. If his parents can't get him to behave decently, how is a ten year old supposed to?
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