Spectrummy Mummy

Asperger's, Allergies, and Adventures Abroad

Uh-oh, what happened?

with 20 comments

Pudding: Uh-oh, what happened?

Me: …. (I am stunned into silence)

The photo above was the sight that greeted me when I went to get Pudding from the basement to tell her that her dinner was ready.  She had been left alone for 25 minutes, while I prepared dinner.  Not content with getting out every toy she and her brother own, she had also put on a DVD by herself (kudos on that one, she isn’t 4 until December), got into the closet and pulled out all the craft supplies.  The ones that are up high and unreachable.  Hmm.  She knows I get angry when she makes a mess, so she hastened to clean up.  The liquid you can see on the floor is a fusion of glue, and water that she had attempted to clean with.  It is smeared onto her dress, the walls, the table, the light switch, pretty much any place her too-tall body could get to.  The paper towels she had also used in her “clean-up” had turned the floor into a giant puddle of paper-mache.  Spectacular.

This isn’t the worst thing she has done, but it is the most recent.  Last week there was a very similar situation with paint (washable, thank goodness).  I’d love to use some positive reinforcement to fix this problem, but when she isn’t rewarded immediately, it doesn’t seem to work.  She is all about the instant gratification.  This only happens when I’m busy elsewhere, so we looked to punishment instead.  The “naughty chair” didn’t work with the paints, so Spectrummy Daddy and I discussed taking it up a notch.  For the rest of the week, there will be no dresses, no nightgowns, and no mummy putting her to bed.  Given that this resulted in bedtime taking 90 minutes longer than usual, it may be a long week.

So, as she was the orchestrator of the mayhem, why did Pudding ask me what had happened?  The answer will be in my next post about echolalia, which will go up some time after I’ve finished tidying up down there.  Until then, because I need to know we aren’t the only parents this happens to, please leave a comment with even worse escapades- either your own or those of your children.  Tell me: uh-oh, what happened…?

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

August 30, 2010 at 8:59 pm

20 Responses

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  1. Oh my goodness! This sight is what often greets me when I am brave enough to enter my son’s “safe space” (his bedroom)!!

    And he too repeats what I would usually say to him “oh my goodness what a mess. you better clean it up right now mister!” (yes he says MISTER!!)

    I am intrigued by what possesses our special kids to get out every. single. toy. ever. ??

    More so – what goes through their mind to get them to the point of NEEDING to do this??

    nice to know Im not alone 🙂


    August 30, 2010 at 9:08 pm

  2. Ah, yes.
    I know the answer to the question, in fact I know ALL the answers!! (not really, I’m just boasting)
    No, you are not alone!
    Nor is Pudding alone.
    Echolalia is fascinating and frustrating but it does lead to other use of language – at least it did for us. Eventually.
    I can imagine a kind of map of where Pudding went in the basement, mostly traced out by what drew her attention. We have a play room full of toys and books. It looks like your basement in that picture about 99.9999% of the time. At least we have no glue or paint in there, so tidying up involves throwing things back in containers.
    I went through a phase of keeping everything in clear plastic boxes. Perky could not get the lids off, so he would have to bring them to me to ask or show me what he wanted. This worked most of the time. It helped contain the mess, too. Now, he can get the lids off, which is a double edged triumph – great fine motor strength but also “access all areas.”
    Perky used to ask ‘what happened?’ usually after an accident such as falling, tripping, knocking a drink over. He seemed to need the process broken down. I suspect Pudding is figuring out her impact on her environment. As well as echoing what she has heard under these circumstances, as you allude to in your post.
    I apologise for my lengthy ramble, but you got me thinking about some things we are now mostly past, and I like to ‘share’. 🙂


    August 30, 2010 at 9:44 pm

    • You know, the kid uses a fist grip to hold a pencil still, but can manage to open child-proof locks and bottles. At least this incident didn’t involve a call to Poison Control or 911!


      August 31, 2010 at 7:54 am

  3. When I was three, my folks took me to the house of one of my dad’s higher ups. The hostess had a nice pack of markers for me and I repaid her kindness by drawing all over her walls. I believe my colors of choice were purple, orange and black. Not quite papier mâché carpet but oh it was bad.


    August 30, 2010 at 9:57 pm

    • Oh wow, it would have to be the higher-ups too,wouldn’t it? Nowadays they sell washable markers, but I live in fear of her getting her hands on Sharpies. The last tie she found one of those, she kept saying “cheeses!” which wasn’t exactly the word I exclaimed when I saw the damage, but close enough!


      August 31, 2010 at 7:56 am

  4. Fidgets perspective, this looks like my playroom from when I was a kid. I needed to organise my own way, to stop doing this, which I found when I was about 9 years of age.
    I have so many thought and things and excitement and energy and a need to express it straight away, or I feel like I will explode. I need to be able to create to slow this down and numb the constant wants to express this frustration.

    If it is any consolation, I totally get it, but my daughter’s bedroom looks just like this, most of the time. She is getting better as she gets older and now has started to try to sort out the mess she creates. I know she will develop a structure of her own in time. She loves her things and hates seeing them messy, so I know it will change. It only really happens now with the clothing, everything else is very organised in shoeboxes. That’s my CAL’s way, ever thing lives in a decorated shoebox.

    Pudding is so amazing….. just look at how much she managed to do in such a short time. Now imagine that with a focus….sheer awesomeness. Love and hugs. x


    August 31, 2010 at 1:12 am

    • I’d say she is pretty good at expressing herself, if a hurricane can be said to express itself! With focus, I think she’d take over the world, call it Puddingland and makes us all wear pink.


      August 31, 2010 at 7:58 am

  5. hahahaha,
    I’ve emailed my sister and asked her if she would allow me to post the photos of what HER daughter did when she was only 4.

    My sister slept in one morning and went into the bathroom to find her daughter sitting on the bathmat COVERED and I mean covered! in nail polish. Not just a few painted marks on her body…oh no, she tipped 2 entire bottles of nail polish into her hands and smeared it ALL OVER her legs, tummy, feet and hands like you would with suntan lotion.

    It was even on the soles of her feet so everywhere she walked was a purply colour!
    The bathmat was ruined as were most of the floors and her nightgown, the towels in the bathroom and the basin were all beyond repair.

    But, for this beautiful little girl – it wasn’t a one off.

    Another time, she decided to make her face into a “ladybird” by colouring her entire face with red lipstick and used black PERMANENT mascara for the black spots!!!

    And when my sister was pregnant with her younger sister, she was asleep on the lounge and her daughter “brushed” her mum’s hair………………with the toilet brush!!!!!!

    Aren’t kids fantastic!!!

    I do have a similar problem with the upending EVERY toy thing. My kids each have a “crap box” under their beds and they now know that anything that’s left on the floor and doesn’t fit in the crap box- is mine until they buy it back!!! Mwuhahahahaha!

    (but yes……Pudding is a little young for that kind of evil parenting!!!) LOL


    August 31, 2010 at 7:25 am

    • Oh my goodness. I’ve always lived in fear of nail polish, because when I was a carer a lady I looked after with Alzheimer’s would put it on her face as lipstick, eye shadow, or blusher. She hurt herself so badly. One time when I was in her house I tried to find it all, but never could. I was so terrified of what would happen when I left her alone (all too familiar again). So yes, on the other side, at least I have the hope with Pudding that she’ll grow out of it. Hopefully before too much damage is done. And yes, I’d love to see the pictures of your niece!


      August 31, 2010 at 8:03 am

  6. I had many ‘behavioural’ issues as a child. Mostly in the trashing-everything-department. This meant that my mother put a stairgate on my bedroom door to contain the mess to one room (I had a habit of getting up at 3 am and emptying the fridge and all the kitchen cupboards onto the floor in a George’s Marvellous Medicine gloop-like fashion).

    The best day was when I was 3. I piled everything in my bedroom (shared with my 2 year old sister) into the middle of the room. I started with clothes, then books, then toys, then the matresses from my bed and my sister’s cot. It looked like a bonfire.

    I then opened my window – thankfully ground floor – and mounted the window ledge like a horse saddle. Swinging my legs backwards and forwards, I gleefully exclaimed to the neighbour (who was up perversely early) that ‘Mummy had locked me in my room.’

    Of course, she looked through the window, saw the mess and assumed I was being neglected. Needless to say that my mother chose to ring Social Services and ask for help before the neighbour did it for her.

    The result was that they changed my diet and put me into school early so that I could be stretched.


    August 31, 2010 at 2:20 pm

    • Yeah, there is definitely a correlation between Pudding being under-stimulated and these behaviours. Roll on school next week. Out of curiosity, what changes were made to your diet? We haven’t seen any difference since removing Pudding’s offending foods, but many people report huge changes. It is interesting.


      August 31, 2010 at 5:19 pm

  7. When e-man was an infant he barely had any hair. One day Mr. Blue Eyes decided a yellow highlighter would solve that problem……lets just say infant scalps take a long time to come clean from such a christening. I’d take a messy playroom any day over a glowing baby’s head.

    Pudding's Aunt

    August 31, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    • For some reason, this reminds me of Van Gogh’s love of yellow. I’ll bet his mother was always at him for using yellow paint too!


      September 1, 2010 at 8:03 am

  8. Well, we’re talking 26 years ago. There were hidden E numbers in tons of food. Mum basically went to cooking everything from fresh but also cutting down on fruit! The excess sugar wasn’t helping.


    August 31, 2010 at 7:25 pm

  9. Oh – and I did my first half a year at school with children older than me; loving it and eating my way through the school library. When September came, my older friends moved up and I was kept behind – the LEA (or whatever it was called then) had changed its rules and I had to remain with my same-aged peers, repeating the curriculum – the school made no provision for my situation.

    That didn’t go down very well. I reverted to my old ways – getting into a lot of mischief. Devious mischief. There was a bully at school who was hideous… Michael. When we had PE, we had a hook to hang our uniform on and a metal cage under the bench to place our shoes in. I popped back in to the changing room after the lesson had started and mixed up everyone’s school shoes. (I was 5). The deviousness was that I included my own pair in the show swapping but left Michael’s untouched.

    It meant he was immediately suspected and his parents were called in to the Head’s office. Mwah hah hah.


    August 31, 2010 at 7:31 pm

    • That is devious, I’m impressed. More impressed that knowing how devious children can be, you still became a teacher. That takes guts!


      September 1, 2010 at 8:07 am

  10. […] Uh-oh, what happened? […]

  11. […] asperger's, autism, Clothing, Dress, Fashion, parenting, Undergarment So you may remember that she made a big mess, and we decided to make a meaningful punishment of no dresses or nightgowns until the end of the […]

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