What would you do if your 6 year old tried to jump out of a window? — The Bump
School-Aged Children

What would you do if your 6 year old tried to jump out of a window?

 I am talking to his therapist about it today, but I want to get your input as well. 

 On Friday last week my son and I got into an argument about cleaning his room. It escalated to him slamming doors, throwing things and screaming so loud is made my ears ring. Lo was witnessing all of it. I ended up spanking my son.

 About 20 minutes after the spanking, I looked toward his bedroom door and noticed there was bright light coming from the bottom. He had been quiet so I was thinking he fell asleep before I saw the light. When I went into his room, he was standing on his bed trying to get the screen off the window. When he saw me he started to cry hysterically. I asked him what he was doing, hoping it wasn't what it looked like. He couldn't even talk, he was so upset. I finally got him calmed down enough to tell me he was trying to get the screen off so he could jump (we are up 3 stories, and below his window is cement). I asked him what he thought would happen to him if he jumped, and he said he would die.

 My world crashed around me. I asked him why, and he said he wanted to die because I hate him. I have no Idea why he would think that, because I tell him I love him all the time, and I have never said i hate him.

 I held him, told him what would happen if he left us. How he would never see his baby brother grow up, me, his daddy and all of his family and friends would be so sad, etc..

 Now what can I do? Besides keep him in counseling, I am at a loss. He seems fine now, and was alright soon after the incident, but I am so scared. The fact that he even considered killing himself scares me so much.

Effing crazy people.

Re: What would you do if your 6 year old tried to jump out of a window?

  • Is he already in counseling?

     

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  • Yes, he is in counseling because of an incident at school last year having to do with inappropriate sexual behavior. We still have yet to find out what that behavior stemmed from.
    Effing crazy people.
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  • I'm so sorry you are going through this.  Reading the part where you held him and told him what would happen to you if you lost him made me get goosebumps and tear up.  A million pieces of advice come to my mind but I do not feel comfortable telling you what to do. You did the right thing going to see a counselor. They would know far better than any of us what his intentions were, if he truly deeply understood what he was doing, if you need to watch for future attempts, if he needs medication. 

    The only thing I can think to tell you from my own experience is that self-confidence and self-love are intrinsic and you can tell him a million times a day that you love him and need him in your life but he had to internalize that and love himself.  I'm sure this is what the counselor will work on with him.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you!!!! 

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  • OMG, my heart goes out to you.   He needs to see his therapist as soon as possible(move up his appt if necessary) so the incident is fresh in his mind.  How often is he going, you may want to increase the frequency.  Make sure you have a very good therapist too.  Just because they are licensed does not mean they are qualified to help you.  This is not normal behavior so I would be taking it very seriously.   I would also go to the extent of securing the windows so he can never open them again on his own.  You cannot go throughout your day thinking that one wrong word is going to make your child an emotional basket case that he wants to jump out a window.   
  • imagelittlemermaid:
    OMG, my heart goes out to you.   He needs to see his therapist as soon as possible(move up his appt if necessary) so the incident is fresh in his mind.  How often is he going, you may want to increase the frequency.  Make sure you have a very good therapist too.  Just because they are licensed does not mean they are qualified to help you.  This is not normal behavior so I would be taking it very seriously.   I would also go to the extent of securing the windows so he can never open them again on his own.  You cannot go throughout your day thinking that one wrong word is going to make your child an emotional basket case that he wants to jump out a window.   

    Yes I agree with all of this.  I would immediately secure all windows in your apartment.  I'm so sorry you are dealing with this, and I hope that DS gets some help.

  • What a terrible situation for both you and your son.  I would strongly consider that you seek counseling as well with someone who can coach you on how to cope with your son's behavior and also help you fine tune your approach to discipline with your son's special needs (e.g. spanking does not seem like the right approach).

    You should also consult with a child psychiatrist because your son's behavior may require more than just counseling.

     

  • Thank you all for your support. I am going to ask for references for a psychiatrist for us both. I am also thinking of family counseling for all of us.
    Effing crazy people.
  • OMG MONJ!!! How awful! Sad

    WHY would he think you hate him?? That is horrible. Poor kiddo and poor mama. I am so scared for you. I don't even want to think about it.

    I think you're already making the right steps. It sounds like you just need a big BIG BIG hug. Left Hug

     

    And I agree with PP's, LOCK THE WINDOWS or something! Eek!

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  • The part about inappropriate sexual conduct made me pause.  If he has been subjected to anything like that, something as intimate as spanking may have set him off.  I really think you need to speak to a behavioral therapist to find out the best possible approach to dealing with your sons behavior.  He doesn't need to think he can get away with bad behavior but you may need to modify your techniques to deal with his special circumstances.  I also agree you need to secure the windows, sounds like he is acting on impulse and if he had been able to fling the window open there is no telling what he would have done. 

    My daughter said I hated her too at that age, so I'm not sure that factors into it as much...kids say those things...but definitely get some help for your family, you may not know the full load he is carrying on his shoulders, find that out and you might have a different kid.  Hugs!

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  • imagejuniper19:

    What a terrible situation for both you and your son.  I would strongly consider that you seek counseling as well with someone who can coach you on how to cope with your son's behavior and also help you fine tune your approach to discipline with your son's special needs (e.g. spanking does not seem like the right approach).

     

    I strongly ditto this!  I'm so sorry you're dealing with this situation.

    I would work hard to develop an arsenal of disciplinary tools to use in place of spanking.  His therapist should be able to help you with some behavior modification strategies that help him to feel more positive about himself.  It's hard when children are very frustrating, isn't it!

    Both my kids have at times thrown out a "You hate me" or "You don' t like me!" in an attempt to manipulate me.  My sense is that what you're dealing with goes beyond that, so I would not chalk his statement up to normal kid stuff, especially not when combined with an attempt to harm himself.

     

    High School English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

    DD, born 9/06/00 -- 12th grade
    DS, born 8/25/04 -- 7th grade
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