8 year old identical twin ...adhd and behavioral rages...getting worse

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by willow424, Apr 15, 2012.

  1. willow424

    willow424 New Member

    New: my son has figured out how to run away! He climbed out his bedroom window onto the roof and jumped down to the ground at 6:45 this a.m. I managed to spot him in the neighbor's yard because his twin told me about it. This is the second time he's done this.
    What do I do about that?

    Second question: How do I make him accountable for all the things he breaks during his rages?

    The other twin is also a difficulty, but more manageable...as of right now anyway!

    Hi All,

    I'm new...

    I am a single mom with identical twin boys....almost 8. They were adopted from Russia when they were 2 weeks shy of 4. They spent virtually their whole toddler-hood in an orphanage. They were both diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 5 1/2 and have been on a wide vairety of medications ever since. None of which seem to work for long. They both have some learning issues and speech, pt, Occupational Therapist (OT) issues as well. Though they are moderately well behaved in school and have always been very well mannered to other adults, home has always been HELL! More and more recently, one of my guys has been prone to violent rages when he doesn't get his way. He can be violent, dangerous and hurtful to me, his twin and even the dog. He's also attembpted to run away. His attitutde has also become very disrepectful at most times and both are beginning to show some behavioral issues in school and public. Both boys are medicated and in counseling. I've initiated the process for psychiatric evaluation but a neuro psychologiacal is not covered by insurance and I can't afford the $3000-$4000 pricetag at this time. My other guy struggles more in school and hurts himself when he gets frustrated. He cries a lot too. I feel that they are both very immature. Neither one is responsive to time out, though one will still do it...the other one has to be physically pinned down until he calms. I'm not going to be able to do that for much longer. One of the boys, though tough, is manageable and the other is often beyond my control. The weird thing, is that 6 months ago, they were opposite. The now unmanagable one, was the calmer one. As twins, they seem to switch personalities and functional abilities quite often. I've had them genetically tested; fragile x, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS),etc. and all came back normal. I do know their ibirth parents lived an "unhealthy" life style.
    I don't really know where to go from here and am very fearful about how and what they will grow up to be. I joke that I'm saving for college tuition or bail!!! Lately, I'm leaning toward the latter.

    Thoughts??? ​
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Well, older adopted kids are almost always extremely challenging. Russian kids especially seem to be challenging. Sometimes the kids were alcohol affected in utero (there is fetal alcohol effects, not the same extreme as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), but still a challenge and it does not show up on genetic tests) and most kids lived in orphanages and get "orphanage syndrome" (aka attachment disorder). Attachment disordered kids are EXTREMELY difficult. I am going to post a link and suggest you see a psychiatrist/therapist who is VERY aware of the challenges of adopting kids who were not loved as infants and toddlers. The kids will not respond to normal therpist techniques and medications will probably not do the trick. You should also seek out a neuropsychologist evaluation for both.

    I am the mom of adopted kids and two were from abroad...Korea (as a baby) and Hong Kong (at six). The baby attached to us. Not the six year old. in my opinion the article I posted is an excellent example of the problems of international older adoption. YOu are NOT alone! However, most adoptions are NOT disrupted, in spite of the problems. Most of us stick it out so that part of the article...I didn't post it to advocate that. I wanted you to see how normal it is for people to adopt older kids with no understanding of what they are going to be like and false profiles of their early lives or current issues.

    You may want to join an adoptive parent group in your area to share ideas with others going through similar things.


    Her is another article, specicially about attachment issues:

  3. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Sounds like a tricky situation. I turned down placement of twins from the USA who clearly had attachment issues (were burning their barbie dolls, police were being called to foster home, furniture was destroyed, violence and social services said they would not cover counseling that in MY home (flattery did them no good) they would be ok because I knew about kids.....duh, that is not the point. These girls were hurt (they were just five and had been taken into foster care after a drug bust, both with cocaine in their symptoms) and the county they were in (HUGE county including the city of MPLS so it was so strange), well maybe it was THAT social worker, just didn't want to admit it. I heard they had been through several homes years later....very sad. So I really admire you took two on, though your boys didn't have the serious behaviors these girls had thank heaven, and hopefully you are getting them help in time.

    I would be putting alarms on all windows and doors. My son was escaping when younger and I had no clue because he actually came home before I woke. I then had alarms installed. He was going up to neighbors and assuming everyone wanted to talk to him, he even walked into one person's house.

    It is great you have that evaluation coming up. Make sure that the psychiatrist you are seeing is familiar with adoption challenges and issues. If insurance will cover a psychiatrist you can then probably look for a university clinic that specializes in international adoption issues???? Might save you some time. They could have developmental delays due to the deprivation they had and far more intensive issues than adhd. Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) (if obvious Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) has been ruled out, have they considered Fetal Alchohol Effect?)

    By the way, we all know tons of kids from Russia who are doing well too, I am not assuming your boys for sure do have this, just since you hare having problems, trying to consider all the possibilities. (One of my very favorite students ever is the kindest girl...deaf, adopted at age 10 from Russia and she and her family were meant to be. They are all deaf and very high achieving. She is generous and spends her time trying to help other people. I became very close to all of them, BUT here is the big difference, she had been raised as an infant/toddler with her grandma who got very sick. SO those early bonding/trust building years were spent with a devoted caretaker. She was placed in an orphanage/school for the deaf there when she was around 4 and yes was very hurt but that core personality development was set, bless her heart).

    There really are some therapies out there that can help and we can't possibly know at this time if what is going on is going to improve without trying. I am happy to say that even with all of my son's challenges his attachment has improved greatly, though it is still an issue.....I still get excited when he wants me to sit with him when he gets his blood drawn or asks me to come to the barn so he is safe, even if others are there.... I know he is looking to me for comfort and there was a time he would go to anyone...so ten years later I am still looking for those validating moments. I wont say it is easy, but I do want you to have hope. The key is to make sure that this "counseling" they are in is attachment focused. That it includes YOU and they are learning that you are their everything.


    dont know how I got UK link but this book is everywhere and other adoption of older child or toddler books have good ideas in them. They give good guidelines for finding and rejecting therapists who are well meaning but can do damage because they really may not be trained to work with adoption and attachment.

    Here is a link to this authors site (he is in Ohio, I am not but there are others out there too...)
    http://www.danielhughes.org/Dan Hughes Web Pages/aboutdanhughes.html

    My best to you....hope you can get alarms put on the windows/doors...

    PS, even if it is not true...you might tell them that the alarms are directly linked to the police so if they set them off the police will come right away. That worked for years for my son. Every year is a year of easier parenting...sigh.
  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member


    You are brave to have adopted older kids from a Russian orphanage. As you are discovering. :)
    And yes, birthparents with-unhealthy lifestyles tend to produce even unhealthier kids. Kids who pay a price for their parents' genetic issues, on top of drug and alcohol abuse. On top of attachment issues.

    Bravo to you for having such thorough testing done asap.

    Still, more testing to be done.

    In the meantime, I would "assume" that there was damage in utero, say, from alcohol; I would then buy a bunch of books and consult with-experts on what types of interventions can be done. Assume that their nervous systems were damaged by chemicals, so there are sensory issues, and that the myelin sheathing on their nerves is damaged, which leaves them very vulnerable to both physical and emotional issues. I would also take out all dyes (candy, cereal) to not add to the chemical issues. And I would try some medications with-the help of a psychiatrist who specializes in these things.

    Of course, living in the real world, they are going to have to learn consequences. I would suggest, in my humble opinion, that it is going to take a lot longer, and a lot more repetition, to teach them consequences. But you're already figuring that out ...

    As an aside, it's interesting that they are identical, but their issues are not identical. I would suggest that they are, in fact, undergoing identical frustrations because of their genetics and chemical exposure, but that their coping mechanisms are different (as you pointed out, one cries, the other acts out, and outward). That is an age-old question for psychologists and philosophers, as to how much the individual is capable of doing and how much is genetic.

    Many, many hugs, and by the way, I agree, "childproofing" your house in a more sophisticated way, i.e. alarms, etc. is a good idea.