History / Mentalhealth / Toolbox

Room Wreckers

Jac is a full scale room wrecker.

She doesn’t stop at toppling chest of drawers and tearing down curtains she literally starts tearing through doors and plaster walls. Not this modern sheet plaster board no….the 50 year old thick genuine plaster walls.

We used Magic 1-2-3 it is NOT a cure, but it does help, By giving those involved really clear instructions on what to do and what not to do when dealing with meltdowns. She still had the meltdowns….but we had consistent responses.

In this video they speak of kids learning and eventually not wrecking their room due to consequences.

For us this didn’t happen, even though we didn’t know it at the time Jacqueline has Pediatric Bipolar, and so it wasn’t a conscious effort on her part to lash out and garner specific responses, for her it was more along the lines of an Emotional storm and she was merely “Expressing” in the only way she knew how, come what may.

What did happen over time was Jacqueline learned to recognise the early signs of Meltdowns, and began taking HERSELF off for time out before she would reach meltdown. She wasn’t always successful, and every 2 month long episode would result in some damage, somehow, some where, and after the 2 months was over and she was more level again we would go in and help HER clean up her room, not do it for her. We would spak fill the walls and repaint, anything broken would be removed.

At times her bedroom floor has literally been an actual foot deep in toys and detritus and we have left it that way for 2 months until she is ready to start cleaning up.

I have a cabinet elsewhere in the house which contains items Jacqueline has selected herself and brought to me when she has felt episodes incoming, Items which SHE didn’t want to risk breaking because she didn’t feel they were safe to have in her room at that moment.

We have had to keep a 1 meter buffer around her bedroom door in which nothing breakable would be kept including pictures on the wall, because there would be times she would lash out on her way to her room and when she first got in there if she wasn’t successful in identifying a meltdown early enough herself that she had to be counted and sent to time out.

Goof Off is your Friend as is Chux Magic Eraser!

and when it came time to paint and decorate her room, she helped!

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