Untangling the Knot 1. Screaming

October 25, 2017

I have difficulties writing lately, as I cannot make sense of tied up together emotions and half-baked thoughts. I feel the obligation to pull separate strings from that knot to understand causes and consequences of Robert’s behaviors.  Unfortunately, the byproduct of those behaviors is a heavy load of mixed emotions that all too often leave me confused.  Of course there are brighter moments, shinier threads but it is almost impossible to write about them when I am overwhelmed with Robert’s current difficulties that seem to place his future in a very depressing context.

  1. Screaming. The frequency and intensity of screaming increased over time. I hoped that it was a passing phase.  Then, I though it was the result of stomach discomfort, acid reflux, or asthma.  So we tried to address all those conditions. But then I noticed prolonged times of increased anxiety.  I noticed that during the walk in Castle Island, Robert became agitated every time we walked closer to a man in a red shirt and a school age boy. When they stopped on the side of the boardwalk to look at the open ocean, Robert passed them quickly  and from that time on, he seemed relaxed and happy.  Robert screamed when a dice, from the game we played, fell on the floor.  He seemed relaxed just before that. Robert started screaming in Costco, when three shoppers pushing their shopping carts seemed to aimed for him blocking his way.  But he continued screaming also after they dispersed. Robert screamed at home when nothing seemed to happen that could trigger making distressed noises. There were times, when he screamed, patted his cheeks in quick, light motion then froze for a few second as if he were listening to his own body.  He did that a few times. Screaming and freezing. Was he in pain?  I assumed, he was and intervened with pro air for asthma, Metamucil crackers for gases and Omeprezole  for acid reflux.  But of course, it could be something completely different.  Maybe that was the suddenly active memory of the past event.  Maybe that was because he wanted to share something with us but didn’t know how to communicate. Maybe that was the environment who changed without any consideration for Robert’s OCD. Maybe, he felt obligated to do something, he didn’t want to do? As for the man in a red shirt, it is possible that Robert knew that person from a different place and thus became confused when he  appeared in a different environment.  It has been my past observation that meeting someone Robert knew from a particular environment in a new place triggers anxiety as if the structure of the whole idea of how the world is constructed was broken.

Just this one behavior involves so many possible causes and consequences.  How to untangle that?

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1 Comment

  1. You are an amazing problem-solver, and I hope that these behaviors become understood and reduced with time.


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