Only one incident that led to leaving a Thanksgiving meal early. When my Big Boy started (somewhat gently) banging his head against a tree, I pulled him away with, “I love you too much to let you hurt your head on that tree. Come with me.” Was it for attention?
It’s a new behavior, happening a few times over the last couple of months. Always when he is upset, always when I am there to see it. Made better by acknowledging whatever the cause, and giving attention. Is it being done *for* attention, or is this his new way of saying he needs something?
“I want to hurt myself.”
“I hear two voices. One is really loud, and the other is really quiet.”
“The quiet one says to not bang my head against the tree.”
“I don’t wanna tell you what the loud one says.”
Part of me feels this IS to get my attention, that he doesn’t truly want to hurt himself, but what if I’m wrong? So I err on the side of caution. We go to put gas in my empty tank, I make him get out of the car and stand beside me as I pump gas. He questions this, as I always leave them in the car, because I pay at the pump. I tell him he can’t be alone, he has to stay close to me until he no longer wants to hurt himself.
We go home, and he helps me cook for the next meal, to be split at two different homes, two different sides of the family. He crushes crackers, stirs the casserole mixture, asks to go play. Nope, not until I am sure you will not hurt yourself.
Does he truly hear voices, or is this the whole devil-sitting-on-my-shoulder thing? Because when I hear him talking about voices, the alarms sound off in my head and heart. See? I just did it, too. I’m obviously not hearing any bells or whistles, it’s an expression of concern. But if he is truly hearing voices, then we need to speed along with this evaluation. If he is banging his head and “hearing” voices for attention, I would like to know if this is progress, or just more complications. Is it better than acting out and getting conduct marks, or is it worse because it is directed inwards?
At my aunt’s house and J’s aunt’s, things were fine. Around 25 people at one, 18 at the other, lots of kids running and playing through the house. Well, I take that back… At my aunt’s, the children were eating in the garage. He did come to me, crying, and asked to go outside to talk. He said a cousin threw ice and hit him and it hurt. I told him to get his plate and come sit with me. He did, and within a few minutes, he was back to playing.
I did tell him that we need to tell his counselor about the head-banging and the voices. He agreed, which is NOT normal. He never wants to tell his counselor much of anything besides games he is playing and what kind of stress balls to order and he will sometimes answer simple questions.
To complicate matters, I am currently recovering from the worst migraine ever. I have had them since I was rear-ended by an 18-wheeler over 15 years ago, but I usually just pop some otc meds and keep going. I woke up yesterday morning with severe eye and head pain, nausea, vomiting, the whole shebang. J was at work, the boys were Lord of the Flies-ing-it. They watched a banned movie, and went through my midnight Christmas purchases. My mom came and picked them up, and J has entertained and cared for them since he got off work. My head is much better, I have kept down my first food since Thursday night, and now I just need to gain back some strength from 33 hours of laying in bed with no food.
As soon as my strength is back, it’s time to get these questions finished so we can secure an appointment to get a full psych eval.