I am looking forward to some much needed time out this weekend. You see it is my birthday and my lovely friends are taking me out for dinner and then some dancing. This usually sounds like a great idea to me anyway, but this week I am desperate for it.

I need a break from being a Mum to a child with ODD. I need a break from being a Mum and to just be me.. you know.

I am lucky I guess that we are on the lower end of the scale when it comes to Oppositional Defiance Disorder, but it is a daily challenge that we are faced with and sometimes it feels like I am not really cut out for it.

It doesn’t help that I am an emotional person and very much an over thinker. I worry to much about the future and what it has in store for our son.. for our family. I worry that it is going to be like this for the rest of his childhood. I don’t want this for him – I know how amazing he is and how amazing he can be. My wish is for everyone else to see him this way instead of seeing the loud and defiant child.

For those who don’t know much about ODD, then don’t worry I had never heard of it until our son was diagnosed either. The name pretty much sums it up – a child who is overly defiant and oppositional to authority figures. They generally don’t have any concern for consequences and will usually become defiant the more you try to discipline.

We have been working hard with our son to get him to a point where it is manageable. At home and school, he is going much better when you compare 12 months ago. But you know there are just days where it becomes too much.

Today’s episode was over the fact that he didn’t get a donut. I was going shopping with my Mum and had given both boys ample warnings that if they didn’t listen or played up that we would go straight home and there would be no donut. That was my bribe for good behaviour.

Anyway, fast forward to not listening and being too cheeky to warrant a donut I took them home. The fall out that happened on the way home was just insane.

I wish I could say I was a calm parent who doesn’t get angry. You know where all the books tell you how you SHOULD be handling things. Stay calm and avoid power struggles is two common pieces of advice.

That is all well and good, but when you are out and you expect certain behaviours it can’t be ignored. So that sets of the defiance.. it is hard to keep calm. The most annoying thing is usually once in this state he will do what he can to get a rise out of me.

And the worst part, watching other parents with kids who are behaving. I get jealous… crazy, ridiculous jealously. That is what I dream of. Simple things like going to the shops and my child behaves. I know you should never compare as you never know what others go through. But on the days where things like this happen it is hard to not get jealous.

I don’t expect perfection of my child – I know one is perfect and that they can’t behave all the time. I can handle that but the consistent one step forward, two steps back is exhausting.

And then I get back to where I am mentally now and know I am grateful for my family and that I truly am lucky. It is just that there are some times where it is harder to remember that.

More than anything I just want to know I am not alone in this journey.

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