This afternoon we saw a great breakthrough moment.... and in this business, that's rare! After weeks of teaching, reteaching, modeling, practicing, reinforcing, ignoring, following a complicated behavior plan, and reinforcing some more.... he walked out of the room safely and to the counselor's office...WITHOUT DESTROYING PROPERTY OR HURTING ANYONE!!!
It was a sweet victory, and even though he was very mad, I think he recognized his personal accomplishment. He did the time out, and genuinely participated in the "processing" portion of the crisis cycle. I can't ask for much more than that.
The most satisfying part: the behavior plan we created and implemented was complicated, time consuming, and intense. Time after time, we were required to follow through, even though our hearts were hurting. It's never easy to stand firm when a cute little guy is begging for another chance.
We stuck to what we knew was right... and it paid off.
We're sure to take a few steps back soon, then a few more forward. It's a long process to make true changes to one's behavior and approach to life's challenges. But today we did take a step forward.
It felt good.