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  #1  
March 13th, 2013, 07:24 AM
alittlelost's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 6,905
So, my daughter has been in gymnastics for a while. She's pretty good at it. At her last competition she got 1st place on beam, 3rd on floor, 4th on bars, and 4th place overall. She loves it, and generally, she is very well behaved, even when other kids are bouncing off the walls or not doing as they are told.

The problem, however, is that when SHE has a problem, it's always a BIG problem. I've talked about this here before--everything comes out as anger. Whether it's fear, embarrassment, sadness . . . she just ACTS angry. And then she ends up getting in trouble for her behaviors while angry. Worse yet, when she gets angry, she STICKS to it, won't let it go.

It's frustrating to me because I want to help her, and because as I'm watching this unfold, I'm thinking, If she would just SAY What is bothering her instead of being mean and angry about it, she would be getting HELP not be getting in trouble.

Example from the other day. A kid kept cutting her in line. Over and over again. So DD wasn't getting her turn. Instead of going and telling someone, she stalked off. In this case, she didn't get in trouble with her coach, but she was hurting herself because she wasn't getting to have fun. If she had told someone, they would have helped her. (I know, because we've been over this with the coaches before). 10 minutes later, she accidentally cut another girl in line. The girl said, "Please don't cut in front of me." And my daughter got angry. Then the coach got involved, and my daughter ended up getting a time out because she was just being so mean about it, arms crossed, etc. Meanwhile, the coach was trying to explain to her that it's not a big deal. That all she has to do is say "Sorry, it was an accident" and get back into the right spot in line.

We've been working with DD about using words instead of getting angry for a long time now. I mean, she's still only 6, but she seems to be the only girl in her class having this problem, and I can't understand why! She HAS made progress, don't get my wrong, but there is a lot of pressure because her coaches say things like if she doesn't stop she will be off the team or if she doesn't stop she can't come to the next practice. I understand wanting to set limits with her, but I feel like that is a lot of pressure. Don't get me wrong, they are trying to work with her, but I think they often forget that she is growing up in a house with two boys with emotional and behavioral problems that stem from autism, and that has to be affecting her.

I'm upset that my daughter can't seem to learn these very simple things and I'm upset with her gym for getting threatening with her about it. If the next closest gym wasn't almost an hour away, I think we'd switch. Now that I would stop trying to get her to express her emotions, but I don't like the added pressure from them.

Anyway, I've been working with her using role play to try to get her to understand the right response to have in certain situations, and that seems to be helping, but that doesn't mean she'll never get angry again, and it's becoming stressful for me. Obviously if anyone has any ideas on how I could help her talk about her emotions instead of just getting angry, I'd appreciate it. Right now I'm at a loss. Emotions are hard to deal with because they tend to be pretty reactive by nature.
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