Meltdown in the Community

The other morning I was at my favorite coffee shop and noticed a Dad having coffee, accompanied by his teenaged son. The son was flapping a straw and rocking. I was happy to see that both of them had a chance to be out in the community, each enjoying the moment.

However, it didn't take long before the young man started to growl and shout out and become very agitated. Instantly, the father packed up his stuff, left his coffee and took the boy out of the coffee shop.

I felt badly for everyone. The dad didn't feel comfortable, and obviously he knows his son best. Perhaps only walking would soothe the young man's agitation. But, I did look around at the other people. Of course, the first thing we do is look. Does someone need help? What is going on? Some people looked annoyed, but most people looked concerned. We all felt somewhat relieved that we didn't have to deal with that.

So, my point is. So, what if the young man was making noise. Surely, we could have put up with it for a while. Neither of them came back, and I am sorry for that. Hopefully, the son could have been soothed and returned, so that the dad could finish his coffee.

Each child has different things that calm, and we have to teach self-calming strategies. A weighted lap blanket, a different fidget toy, a different colored straw, a texture bag, a visual with calming strategies, or a visual that showed breathing techniques.

I wish every parent had the full support of the community to give it a go and stay while trying strategies to avoid the full meltdown. We need to not give the annoyed looks. This is truly a time when we need to put ourselves in someone's shoes!

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