11-Year-Olds Have Meltdowns Too: Navigating the Storms of Childhood

Here we find ourselves, my eleven-year-old daughter, and I, in the midst of a storm of emotions. She’s hurling words I can’t put into writing, aimed at both my husband and me. She’s sprawled on the floor, her fingernails tracing lines on her arms, tears flowing uncontrollably, and her breath is coming in rapid gasps.

“This is not okay,” my husband says. “We should stop.” I assure him no; it’s okay and remind him this is where we see a central nervous system disability, the thing that others don’t see, the thing she masks hardest.

It’s been a relentlessly stressful two weeks, culminating in an overwhelming fight-or-flight response, pushing her to breaking point.

How did we arrive here, and more importantly, how did we then navigate our way out of this turbulent sea of emotions?

Our journey began when my daughter’s hamster and two beloved cats passed away during a six-week adventure in Bali. Just when the heartache...

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“Navigating Kids’ Screen Time Agreements: Striving for Balance in the Digital Age”

It happened; we fell from our healthy screen time boundaries and got lost in arguments where phrases like “I need 10 more minutes” and “You don’t understand these llamas need to spawn” became daily issues.

The cat trauma of Christmas left my 11-year-old daughter in deep grief, so I allowed her to binge-watch Young Sheldon and lose herself in Minecraft. My husband was away, and I was spending hours caring for our nine cats.

Unlike those of you who go “back to school,” we had a slower start back to our learning routines, so screen time lingered a bit after Christmas. Then I suggested we needed to sit down and plan our screen time agreements for 2024. This was met with huge resistance. HUGE!

Screen Time Agreements

She knew that any new agreements were going to feel harsh after this lapse, so she fought it, until suddenly I realised we were in a bickering-over-screen-time cycle. This has NEVER happened before because, in my Positive...

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