Since my last pulling-my-hair-out post, I took a lot of advice to heart. I've contacted a social worker that does parenting classes and also "counsels" families who are struggling with behavior issues. I hope that having an outside perspective will help us see things in a different light and give us some new strategies to use. I know it's not just Porter that is the problem... I know there are things that we, as parents, are doing that are reinforcing his behaviors/actions.
I also took the advice of Nicole (Fishsticks and Fireflies) and researched a little about Red Dye 40 (aka Red 40... an artificial food coloring found in some foods). A lot of the "research" (I'll use that term loosely) suggests that the artificial coloring can act as a stimulant to some kids and can bring out more impulsive, naughty, hyperactive behaviors. I discussed this with a couple of my co-workers and quite a few of them fully believed it... they'd seen it with their own two eyes in their years of working with kids. So, last week we started watching what Porter was eating and making sure he wasn't eating anything with the artificial coloring in it.
I didn't notice a drastic difference but I did notice we had quite a few good days in a row. And then this morning he woke up before us and chowed a bowl of Trix (aka.... loaded with Red 40) and when I got up he was literally bouncing off the walls.... skipping through the house, jumping into furniture and just plain hyper.
Coincidence? I'm not sure. But, I'm curious to see how things go in the next few weeks with keeping the Red 40 out of his diet.
So... what do you think? Is the Red Dye 40 a myth or do you think it does have some effect on some kids?
Here are some articles I found interesting and informative: