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Current Issue of BDINews
Caring for the High Maintenance Child
By Kate Andersen.

Anxiety and Separation Problems. Oct, 2017.
Dear Kate:
We have been trying to find an answer for my nephew for 12 years with no real success. He has been in and out of counseling with no real positive solution ....
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Coping with an Irritable Child.

In order to reduce stress in your child, you need to have a good understanding of your child's unique way of responding to stress and the specific situations that are stressful for your child. Here are some methods that have worked for other families. Be creative in finding ways to help your child.

"Transitions are Melissa's stress triggers and coming home from day care she is very tense and wired. We found that our life with Melissa improved two hundred per cent when we took some time to play with her after day care, before we started preparing dinner. She had a snack in the car on the way home to stave off her appetite and then we would play for at least half an hour".

"Raj is one of those kids who gets uptight a lot. He is what they call an 'inhibited child'. Even when he was just four years old, we taught him how to relax by playing 'raggedy Andy' with him. We taught him how to make his arms and legs go all floppy (he loved it!). Now, at age nine, he is an expert on relaxation methods!"

"Justin is a seven-year old 'high maintenance child' who has a severe learning disability. He starts his day in our out-of-school care program,goes to school where he struggles for six hours and then comes back to our program until five-thirty. His behavior after school is very challenging; he runs wildly, hits other kids, and even has severe tantrums sometimes. A consultant reminded us to stop and think about Justin's day from HIS point of view. We expected Justin to arrive from school calm and ready to jump into one of our interesting activities but he needed time to make the transition as well as to release tension. So we sat down with him and talked about acceptable ways to unwind in our program. He can choose between the trampoline or a video (because the consultant pointed out that a high activity level may mean either the need to discharge energy or, paradoxically, the need to rest!!). Interestingly, he first chose the trampoline but got more and more wound up and ended up choosing the video more often himself when he realized this was what worked better. But he said he needed to watch the video all by himself. After a long staff discussion, we decided to let him have this privilege and did some fund-raising so we could have a couple of extra TV sets and VCR's for the several children who seemed to benefit from some private time".

"At age three, Jenny could only unwind by sitting on my lap and having a story. This got to be a problem when her baby brother needed to nurse. Believe it or not, I figured out a way to nurse him and share my lap with her at the same time! She grew out of the need for my lap, and now just sitting close does the job".

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   Parenting Info:
Temperament FAQs
Get answers!
to some common questions about behavioral style.
Origins, impact on parenting, risk for behavioral issues, relationship to
ADHD, and other topics.
Goodness of Fit
Getting to know your child
How temperament is assessed.
Poor fit can lead to stress
and possibly emotional or behavioral problems
Getting help
When professional help is needed
There are qualified individuals
from several disciplines who counsel parents and children.
Books for parents
Spirited child?
Find out how to meet the challenge.
Learn how to identify and cope
with temperament traits in your child.