Here we go again

Questions about behaviour.  Stilted awkward questions while the other parents come and go.  Are they listening?  Are they asked questions too?

We’ve been down this road before when someone told me you weren’t normal.  Six months later and they called me to ask where you’d been.  They were quiet, they said.  You were just a normal, busy boy they said.  Did they know the path they set us on?  Pediatrician waiting rooms, googling disorders late at night.  All to be told you were just a very busy three year old boy.

And now we’re here again.  “Have you had his behaviour checked out?” they ask.  “Can we have the paperwork?” they say.  I’m trying not to be defensive.  I tell them about the improvements you’ve made, the health nurse who calls you smart and inquisitive.  But all I hear is “hopefully”.

Are they wishing something on you?  Will it make their job easier?  Do they know every time they say “hopefully” they are planting a fresh seed?  ODD, ADHD, ASD, OD, SPD – I know all the acronyms.  I sit and ask myself “Did I neglect you?” “Did I punish you too harshly?  Not enough?” “Will you suffer at school?” “Am I just a lousy parent?”.

I used to relish these three hours but now all I do is worry.  Are you playing nicely?  Are you being too rough?  Are you rolling around on the ground again at story time?  Do they care about you or have they given up already?  They don’t bother with an art smock anymore.  They don’t greet you with a hug or a smile anymore.  Do they know of your sweetness?  Your light?  Do they relish your affection like we do?

I’ll be picking you up soon.  We will sing your new favourite song in the car.  I will acknowledge the naysayers but I will hold you close.  I will be defensive because sometimes someone has to.


  1. says

    Oh Carli it sounds a little bit heartbreaking! I have no advice, just hugs. And sometimes being defensive is entirely necessary. xx

  2. Pretty Sister Savage says

    What’s “normal” anyway?? I work with many children and they are all different, they all have the positive and negative parts to their personality…speaking as a very proud Aunty…You have a beautiful, loving, hilarious and yes very active 3 year old…we wouldn’t have him any other way either xx

    • Mrs.Savage says

      Thanks :) – It does help knowing despite whatever label he might or might not end up with he’s still the same child.

  3. says

    Your post has moved me nearly to tears :( You know we have had the same thoughts about Moopy, and came to the conclusion that there is no point in having a label for his behaviour unless it would change something about what we are doing. If he had ADHD what would I do? Not much different to what we are doing now. Certainly no medication, maybe a little less junk food. I like to think of them as highly intelligent, bored little boys. I don’t know if you’re after advice, but if I know you you’re doing reading and researching – maybe look at strategies for older kids? I really think they’re both a bit ahead of their time, and understand a lot more than other kidlets. With Moopy “age appropriate” things don’t really work. Hope you find that helpful, it’s not meant in a judgy way at all. FWIW I look forward to his greetings and sometimes cuddles on pickup days!

    Kids are wise enough to choose parents equipped with the tenacity to deal with their challenges – this is something I tell myself LOL Sure as hell most people would have left Moopy on a doorstep at 8 weeks old….. ;)

    • Mrs.Savage says

      Oh sorry, probably not what you need right now. I know early intervention is key with a lot of things but there’s a fine balance between that and waiting some things out. I’ll check out your tips about the older kids. In the meantime I’ll just keep praying we don’t upset any of the other parents x

      • says

        Oh no, it’s all good! :) You’re right, there is a balance. I wouldn’t stress too much about the other parents, as far as I have been able to ascertain some of the other parents will be upset no matter what happens (oh how wise you were to time Baby Savage’s arrival so you could easily opt out of a committee role!

  4. says

    We are going through the same thing with No. 1 Daughter, and my heart goes out to you. Nothing about it is easy, and even when they do give you answers, how do you know if they’re the right ones except in hindsight?

  5. says

    Twenty years ago everyone would have shrugged their shoulders and said ‘boys will be boys’. WTF happened that we now need to label any kid who doesn’t ‘behave’ like they ‘should’.

    Chin up. I bet he’s an awesome kid. He’ll show ‘em.

    • Mrs.Savage says

      Thanks Tam, I think you’re right. Three year old preschool is a fairly recent thing and I think it’s a bit unrealistic to expect them to sit still and play nicely at that age.

  6. Kim-Marie says

    My little chap had one particular preschool teacher who insisted he wasn’t “school ready” because he was four-nearly-five not six. He also used to roll around a bit, couldn’t sit still, didn’t like colouring in and was very happy playing made up games on his own. He also had speech issues. Just not clear enough.

    Turns out he has low muscle tone and mild oral dyspraxia. Nothing a bit of speech therapy, occupational therapy and a bouncy cushion for his chair couldn’t sort out.

    He rocked Kindergarten, slid a bit in Year 1 (teacher issues) and is now happily sailing through Year 3.

    He’s got lots of friends, but still enjoys playing his made up game happily by himself. He still has issues sitting still but so do many small boys!

    Trust your instincts, get him assessed for your own peace of mind and know that you’re a kickarse parent! X

  7. says

    Oh Carli! I wish I knew what to say. He sounds like a perfectly happy, healthy, loving little man who has great parents that love him right back. I know the feeling having quite a spirited little one, too. It can be confidence rattling!! This parenting gig is hard. You’re doing great x

  8. Tracey says

    My now 29 yr old was labeled by all and sundry,tested at school in grade 5 so they could discover what sort of learning disability he had and surprise surprise NOTHING.He was labeled gifted bad behavuor because he was bored out of his skull lol.He was a handful always moving into everything never quiet and could run on 5 hrs of sleep.He is now a wonderful man, has a trade and thriving in his army career.I made it through it all by being that pushy defensive mother.You get there ,I am so proud of that little boy who refused to fit the mold

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title="" rel=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>