Me: A, do you wan-
JUST A???JUST A???NOT ME???
T: K, how was-
IT'S A PARADE!!!IT'S A PARADE!!!
Radio: In today's new-
We call it "blocking." He tries to intercept any attention that may go to someone else or something else. He's VERY loud.
Talking about it and consequences haven't worked because even negative attention is attention. So now we are trying ignoring.
I have two main issues with ignoring. One, he has already experienced the ultimate "ignoring" in his life. Ignoring him, especially when he's clearly feeling anxious, seems like the opposite of what we should be doing. Two, if you're going to ignore, you have to be prepared for the inevitable escalation. You're going to have to ignore ear-splitting, house-shaking tantrums.
But... it's working. We've created a point system. He gets points for "Letting grown-ups do what they need to do." We catch him allowing us to attend to other people and things and reward that behavior, and we give no attention to his attempts to block us. It's only been a few days, but I already see a huge difference. I can tell he's working it out
in his head. He says to me, calmly, "You're listening to the radio.
You're paying attention to the dog." "That's right," I say. "But I'm
still thinking about you."
It makes my life easier. I hope that his newfound calm is helping him, too.