Dealing with children who display ODD or Oppositional Defiant Disorder can be quite a frustrating job. It may seem to you that you have tried out every possible methods but nothing seems to work to make your child comply with you. This can make the relationship between a parent and a child quite stress filled. Whatever you do seems to have no effect on your child whatsoever which can be a reason behind your anger, frustration and disappointment.
Parenting a Child With Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) is Not Easy
Children who suffer from Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) are not like the regular children and hence handling them requires different tactics as opposed to regular kids. Regular children have an idea as to what the society and their parents expect out of them. They have an idea of the limits that are there. So while they may try and test the limit from time to time, they are not entirely regardless of the rules and regulations. Children who suffer from oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), on the other hand, totally defy society and its rules. They do not care about any limits imposed on them and are always on the lookout of new ways to break the rules which exert quite some strain on the parents.
Children suffering from oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) create chaos on a daily basis just for entertainment. If they are bored they will create such chaotic situations which are bound to push a parent’s emotional buttons. It can be quite difficult to deal with an oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child in such a situation which may lead to the parent in blaming themselves for such a disaster. Even the society judges they parents of an oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child harshly which can be a source of quite an emotional and psychological strain on a parent. It becomes very easy to blame oneself for the chaos.
Normal Consequences Do Not Work With Children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
Have you noticed that normal consequences do not seem to work on your oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child? Why is this case? This is because an oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child is unlike a normal child and do not care for any consequences that you may have in store for them. Even if you take away privileges they will give you a “don’t care” attitude. This can be quite harassing for a parent. You are bound to feel desperate and furious that none of the controlling measures are working on your child. ODD children want to play the control game and they are usually the masters of controlling the situation at the expense of their parents’ mental sanity. So do not expect them to respond to any of your emotional or logical pleas.
Unlike a normal child, an oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child would not let you have any kind of control over their behavior. When you punish a normal child, they will more or less listen to you. But an Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) child will never listen to you. Ground them and they will escape from the window in a few minutes. Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) children get pleasure from the power struggle and thus they are very creative when it comes down to getting his / her way around the consequences. This is a difficult situation for a parent as nothing they ever do seem to work with their oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) kids. They feel almost no discomfort on being punished by their parents and will do the same things over and over again.
Fail Proof Consequences Might Work With Children Having Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
Fail proof consequences are something that experts have devised, that helps the parents of oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) kids to deal with their behavior in and effective manner. These are fail proof consequences because the full control of the consequences in such a scenario lies entirely in the hands of the parents. We show the parents how to exactly use these kinds of consequences.
If we consider internet usage, for example, you need to have full control over the situation. If you just tell your child that he is banned from using the internet services, then he will just go on to surf the web when you are asleep. They will even flaunt it on your face unlike a regular child because they get pleasure from breaking the rules. Such a consequence is not fail proof because you have no control over the situation. However, if you stop paying the internet bills and suspend the internet services, then it is a fail proof method. Your child may go on to surf the internet at some friend’s house. But your consequence stands firm he cannot use the internet service from home until and unless he rectifies himself. You may get your own internet access from the Wi-Fi connection to your phone, but suspend the internet services of your home as a consequence for undesirable behavior.
Another example of a consequence is suspending the child from using his phone. But, it is hardly a fail proof method as a child can use the phone easily when you are asleep or not looking. However, if you decide not to pay for his phone bills anymore and suspend the services then it becomes a fail proof method. The oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child will still have his phone but will be unable to call or text or even use the internet services. He may resort to using a friend’s phone, but his own phone would not work unless you pay for the bills.
A Different Approach of Thinking about the Outcome of an Action
We tend to think that consequences will result in the change of behavior of a child. However, in reality, consequences and change of behavior hardly goes hand in hand. It is not necessary that just after a consequence an oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) child will change his behavior. He may become more stubborn just to play the power game. However, what we want to do is to prepare a child for the real world. In real world, there are consequences for undesirable behavior, whether you learn from it or not. A child should know that if he engages in activity A then consequence B is about to follow regardless of his manipulative strategies. Slowly the child is bound to change his behavior in order to avoid the unfavorable consequences which might disrupt his life.
From Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) to Conduct Disorder
After reading this if you are thinking, “But even the fail proof results don’t work with my child. My kid is threatening and damages my house.” In such a scenario, your teen has probably crossed the limits of oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) and has moved into Conduct Disorder. Such kids destroy property and violates others rights and nothing but the legal system can act as a fail proof consequence for them. There are some tips that can help you to make the police and the judicial system to listen to you and you no longer need to be frustrated while dealing with this.
Teaching Strategies for Children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
Educating children with oppositional defiant disorder or ODD can be pretty demanding, but with the help of these approaches you will find that things can progress a lot more smoothly. Teaching a child with oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) is quite an exhausting job. It can be quite frustrating as it may seem that the child is not willing to listen to you. However, it would do well to keep in mind that these children act like that because somewhere they are suffering too. Though it may seem like they are just creating chaotic situations in order to cause misery to others, it is not always the case. Children suffering from oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) have mental deficits as a result of negligence, economic disadvantages or neuro chemical imbalances. There are some useful teaching strategies which might help you in the long run to teach the children the need to act properly.
Establishing Expectations is a Good Teaching Strategy for Children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
If a teacher can establish the expectations they need out of an oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) student, then it becomes easier for the children to follow it through. Teachers will do well to start the day by placing 2 or 3 goals in front of the oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) children which will, help them to know exactly what is expected from them. These targets may incorporate expectations such as “I will comply with the word ‘No’ “or “I will follow instructions.” Monitor the progress of the child right through the day after placing the required expectations in front of them. Restate the expectations as many times as required to get the desirable result. So, establishing expectations is a practical teaching strategy for children with ODD.
Praising the Child Occasionally is an Effective Teaching Strategy for Children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
Children who suffer from oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) may seem to give a “Don’t care” attitude. But if you praise hem from time to time then it can be an incentive for good behavior. Some words of appreciation from the teacher mean a big deal to such students and make the education process much smoother. Moreover, rewarding good behavior is essential for making the oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) children act in a proper way. Praising the child occasionally is a productive teaching strategy for children with ODD.
Making Children Learn About the Natural Consequences of Undesirable Behavior is a Powerful Strategy for Children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
Students with Oppositional Defiant Disorder or ODD normally respond well to praises and flexibility but they should know that any kind of undesirable behavior will have bad outcome. The outcome have to be logical and meaningful and something that the children will always wish to avoid.
Consequences have to be such that it will help the children overcome disruptive behavior. A teacher has to know her student well in order to meet out such consequences which will be meaningful to them. Some students, for example, love doing activities in the classroom, so this would not be an effective outcome for incorrect conduct.
Working with children who are victims of oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) can often involve more work and might be frustrating at times. But nonetheless it can also be enlightening for the teachers who have taken extra time to recognize the student’s illness. Establishing clear expectations from the oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) students and providing them with anticipated positive and negative outcome for their actions can go a long way in making them responsive towards the path of right action.