ADHD Kindergartener mom fustrated and venting.. any others out there?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by michie87, Sep 4, 2011.

  1. michie87

    michie87 New Member

    So, I had ADHD. And so did his sperm donor. So when the signs started appearing it was not a big surprise to me and my husband. We did a lot of
    research ourselves and taught ourselves better responses and better choices towards teaching and helping him, discipline, and just being with him and being
    able to handle it all. I'd say we did pretty good as parents for the most part. Before he ever went to preschool, he knew his ABC's by sight and 1-10, shapes
    and colors, and much much more

    When L was 4 his pediatrician noticed he was always walking on his tippy toes. She determined that it was due to short
    tendons in his heels and ankles. So she recommended he go to kids of the future to get therapy on it. He qualified there for physical and occupational therapy
    and was aloud to attend preschool there as well. This was really good on him as far as social skills and whatnot goes. And because they were used to working
    with special needs kids, teaching him was easy to them. They informed me one day they thought he needed to be tested for ADHD and I began telling them we already
    realized this. They couldn't do the testing themselves, but recommended we see his pediatrician. So that was our next step. She informed us she didn't like to
    do the testing before 6 yrs. old and that she thought he was fine. She told us we might try a special center like the schmittings center so we did. They wanted
    a doctor or elementary school recommendation so I requested it. Next we knew the Doctors office was calling stating that they sent the recommendation and it was
    sent back because of his age. Every turn we made was a dead end. So, frustrated, I realized I wouldn't be able to get him help until kindergarten and that was
    arrogating because we didn't want him to have to go through this struggle in front of all his new classmates. The doctor also informed me not to inform the
    elementary school of any of this. That he might just "adjust" and be ok with it all. I knew different but I followed suit thinking doctors knew

    First day of school.. By 11am I had already received calls from the principal. Spent half the day on the phone with her at my work. Then
    finally at 2 they requested I come get L because he had all he could take. We had a long conference there and decided to keep him on half days until he
    could adjust. I told her my story and they said ok, we will get in touch with his doctor. When they did, she told him that he was just fine and didn't need
    help. They begged and pleaded with her and even invited her to come sit with him at the school and see for herself. Her recommendation was to send him back to
    preschool for another year. "Like hell!" I thought. So I immediately switched doctors to one that would help. The next day I had a Conners test in hand and an
    appointment 3 days later. I was so happy that I had finally found someone who believed us.

    He was indeed diagnosed with ADHD. We decided to place him on Daytrana (the patch) at the lowest mg and see how it went. We immediately saw
    changes at home. He was able to focus, he sat through an entire meal, he played nicely instead of stingily. But he was still L. The personality wasn't lost
    as it is so much with stimulant medications. The school didn't see improvement the first day and started voicing that strongly. I told them look, were seeing it,
    just give it a chance to work. The next 3 days we got great reports! He was getting better every day. Then for some reason it went down hill and fast. The
    school discussed the the doctor what was going on and the doctor called them back and made an appointment. I was like WTH? I gave them all permission to converse
    so that we can get Landon the best help out there, not permission to make my appointments. So the doctor and I, and the school and I had a very long talk. When
    we went to the appointment I made sure the doctor knew they were the only ones seeing this problem. He didn't act they way they said at home or at the other
    school (which he is still attending in the afternoons when he gets out of elementary). We came up with a behavior folder in which both schools and us
    at home leave daily reports so that all parties know what's going on and for the doctor to read as well. Plus this also gives us a chance to discuss it with
    L and let him know mommy and daddy are reading this stuff and he will get in trouble if seen fit. These notes state L's actions minute for minute..
    Which I was not expecting. They talk of him screaming out, being impulsive, hitting people, climbing on the counters and such.. This is not my son. He is
    hyper yes, and has a very hard time focusing on anything... But he doesn't act out like this. So I'm starting to wonder why...

    >One statment said "he was cutting out a design and got very fustrated, slammed his scissors down
    and said grrrrrrr" I was like ok... thats because he is left handed and you stupid people havent listened when I said he has special scisorrs he is
    suposed to be using (problem solved)
    >Another said "We were in time out in the hall because timeout in the room wasnt working. Once it was done we
    started walking back to the class and the child proceeded to hit me and say My tummy hurts." Im like hello! He is 5!! He wasnt hitting you, he was
    tapping you and telling you he was hungry. And thats violent?!?
    > We cant forget the phone call I recieved about the firetruck.. Which incidently wasn't even a firetruck it was an ambulance. Apparently one went by with the
    sirens on and L got very excited and ran to the window to watch. Then began telling his classmates to look. 5 People, 5! What 5 y.o. doesn't
    think that thats kool and exciting?

    Then they sent home homework (which was class work that they said he couldnt focus on to do) We sat down and worked out
    the 2 worksheets. One was on patterns and the other on diferenciation numbers and letters. He blazed through them like nothing. Then we moved on to the color,
    cut and glue activity which took a lot more time to do. There was alot to it. He managed just fine and didnt even get fustrated with cutting it out (which is
    unusual before the patch) The only part he struggled on was cutting out eyelashes because if you cut too far it'l cut the eyelid in half. A normal kid
    would have had a hard time with that..He sat for 45 min undistracted and unfustrated and did his homework with very little direction from me. I know
    theres less distractions at home but never-the-less 45min is a lo0ng time.

    Knowing all this, the doctor (very skeptically) bumped him up to the 15 mg patch to see if it would help more in school. He instructed me that if
    for any reason it looks like too much or changes his personality or causes him to be robotic then to just pull the patch off and let him know and we would go
    with the plan B we came up with. The very first day of the patch they call to inform me that there is no change. Once again I have to explain to them that it
    takes a few days to fully get in his system to reep the benifits.. Im very fustrated with having to AGAIN explain this to them. Im fustrated with the fact
    that we are seeing the changes at home and the other school is too but the new elementary isnt. We were so excited to have a support group wit this school and
    some people to help us out because usually schools will just send them back for another preschool year, not wanting to deal with it. But, not Im seriously
    starting to question their judgment and their idea of misbehaved. When he tries hard and still getting in trouble after awhile wouldnt he just get so fustrated
    that trying isnt an option anymore?

    Well, L made it to the special Alternative exucation class finally! So thats exciting. Its just a class no bigget then 12 kids with 2 teachers so that theres less ditractions and more one on one time. He startes that tuesday and I hope this does well for him. Between work and hom and caring for my grams and the school, I'm spent. I knew it was going to be this dificult and thats why I tryed to get it done before Kindergarten so he would have an easier time of it all. I fear the other kids
    will shun him away as the bad kid now and I fear the school will continue to have their expectations for him way too high. Its just all fustrating. I just
    wrote this to vent a little to people who might be expierencing some of the same things. Comment if you'd like. Give ideas or advice or just share your storie
    too. Id love to have a small group of people to talk to about stuff like this.
    Lasted edited by : Sep 12, 2011
  2. keista

    keista New Member

    Welcome to the board!

    Has the regular school given him an IEP yet? I"m guessing that it will be on deck since he's being placed is the sped class. The reason THEY are not seeing the good results you and the other school are is because THEY are indeed clueless, and not accommodating him. The other school accommodates by design, and you accommodate because you are used to him, and if you don't, you know there will be great chaos.

    Has he ever been evaluated for anything else? Developmental delays? Fine and gross motor skills?

    Welcome again.
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi there and welcome to the board. I'm also wondering if there is more going on than ADHD. Also, although you are used to him, in my opinion you have to understand that he IS disrupting the class. Maybe he can't sit still...I totally believe that he can't, but it's still disruptive. I think that the fact that he is going into an alternative classroom is a good idea.

    I also think it would be a good idea to take him to a neuropsychologist who will go beyond the Connor's test. That alone is not really definitive. Kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and bipolar also score high on the Connors. A neuropsychologist is a good diagnostician who covers every area of development and behavior. I think it's worthwhile. I wouldn't trust just a pediatrician to diagnose a childhood disorder like ADHD. It really isn't their specialty.

    Keep us posted on his progress and good luck!
  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    You're going to need MORE than the neuropsychologist. (bear with me, MWM...)
    The neuropsychologist is the most in-depth one-stop evaluation you can get.
    But it does NOT cover everything. And it does NOT cover some things that click for me on this one.

    Oh, I remember Kindergarten. And grade 1.
    If we could have had gne answers we have now, back then - we'd never have gotten to the stage of difficult child. Ever.
    So, I could be wrong. But... if it were my kid, I'd be pushing for:

    1) a comprehensive evaluation - neuropsychologist or other - that will be screening for all sorts of developmental, emotional and learning issues. You need to rule in or out as many conditions as possible. Some will need to be delayed (i.e... testing shows "some signs" but its too early to realy diagnosis) - that's fine for now, it means X diagnosis is "not ruled out" yet - so allow for it.

    2) Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluation - specifically, testing for motor skills and for sensory issues. Both can exist. Either one will make it hard to get through a day of school - and either one will lead to bullying by the other kids.

    3) Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) evaluation - this is going to be critical, but the test you really need is so new it may be hard to get. He may have auditory processing issues - these typically fall into two general camps - difficulty processing verbal language, or difficulty processing "important sounds" (like what the teacher is saying) in the presence of background noise. Ask specifically about testing his ability to hear through background noise - if he screens for this, you'll be sent to specialty audiology for further tests... If he has this, there are accomodations and interventions that help, but you need them as fast as you can get them.

    Just some ideas to try on for size...
  5. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Hi just for privacy you might want to edit his name out. I think think its a great idea that he is going into the sp ed class. Have you met the teacher and seen the new classroom? High expectations aren't a bad thing as long as the supports are in place that the kids can actually do the work. From what you said he can do at home it sounds like he can do the work. He might excel in this class.

    Sometimes its a personality conflict between teacher and kids. Yes, even in kindergarten I have seen it. The school I used to work for had a kindergarten kid the teacher described as awful. They got him on an IEP, had me develop a behavior plan, from what the teacher was telling me I was worried about next years teacher. Got him in a new class for 1st grade and the new out-of-college teacher didn't have any problems with him.

    It could also be something or someone in that class is setting him off. A stressor that isn't in the other environments. If he has sensory issues it really could be anything. Or it could be the expectations and work are harder and the supports are weaker so he loses it more in that class. Any way, the new class will be a good thing.

    ADHD can be a part of many other dxs. Some you wouldn't ever consider. I never thought difficult child 1 would be on the autism spectrum. Toe walking is a flag for autism. You might want to get more testing done by a neuropsychologist.

    Ditto on what the previous posters have said. Plus, you'll probably want to get some one other than the school to do the testing. I has been my experience that the person (or school) who pays the piper picks the tune. I'm not saying the school's personal is bad its just better to have your own done and then the school can do testing too, if they don't want to go off of yours. I'm sure some other parents here have had good results with the schools. I have not. For us there testing wasn't invalid. It was incomplete and they didn't always interpret it right and they don't always know what accommodations are needed after they do the testing.

    Good luck and you have found a wonderful place.
  6. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! Welcome to the crowd! I took the liberty of changing your son's name to "L" for privacy sake.

    I agree with the others about additional testing. I'd definately look into sensory could be that he's getting overstimulated in the classroom environment. It also sounds like you've got an incredibly bright child on your hands - uh-oh!!! lol!

    The neuropsyche and auditory processing testing would be great...if there are add'l issues, it'll really help if they're addressed nice and early.

    Bravo! Warrior Mom for standing up to the pediatrician - what a box or rocks!

    It's a great group here - a lot of experience and strong shoulders!

  7. kspiro77

    kspiro77 New Member

    Hi everyone! I just found this group this morning and I am already feeling better. I am another frustrated mother of a kindergartner.

    I have a 5-year-old and he has been having "behavioral issues" since day 1. The first day of school I received a phone call from the teacher. The 2nd day I received an email from the art teacher. It has been a daily problem since.

    I have requested an IEP and all I get is "well its being worked on, we need to do a thorough evaluation first". But in the meantime I keep hearing about his awful days and how he's defiant and disruptive in class. He is putting holes in his papers, scribbling, flailing his arms and hitting others. He slapped a teacher in the hallway on her hand for trying to help him, he pulled on a kids backpack and almost knocked him down, he took his shoes off and refused to put them back on, he spins in circles, and on the bus he is now trying to trip others and stands on the seat to reach out to other kids.

    I'm so irritated with the school system. They call me for answers, but I thought they were supposed to be helping me. I call everyday to see how he's doing. I'm always asking why the IEP has not been done yet. I say he needs an aide in his room to help the teacher. They all treat me like I'm crazy. Ugh. He's already been diagnosed with ADHD and the doctor has started him on Focalin XR. Apparently his mornings are better, but the afternoons are still iffy. I have been considering having him see a child psychologist, but I don't know if that will hurt him or help him. He's so smart, but the school work sent home is all scribbles. He says he doesn't like art because he can't do it. I have also considered maybe putting him in the Special Education program at the school to get him in a smaller group. Maybe more one on one could be beneficial.

    I'm just going nuts with the phone calls and emails and letters daily. Its very difficult to see his cute little face be so upset because he hates school already. Its only been 3 weeks.

  8. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome (you might want to start a separate thread for your own situation). Some of the things you mention - putting holes in his papers, scribbling, flailing his arms, pulling on a kid's backpack and almost knocking him down, taking his shoes off and refusing to put them back on, spinning in circles, and on the bus and standing on the seat to reach out to other kids - seem to me not that shocking behaviour for a 5 year old. But what do I know - I'm just a lax British woman :) Clearly the school does not understand ADHD enough or take it seriously enough. Your son isn't doing these things because he wants or is choosing to be naughty or disruptive... easier said than done to truly accommodate that, of course, but it is their job (presumably) to do so. Is his teacher sympathetic and can you talk to her/him directly? Can you do what I have done which is bring in material for the teacher to read? You are going to have to fight your son's corner here, it sounds like (and sounds like you are really doing that already). I am not familiar enough with the US system to know but who is responsible for deciding whether an IEP is suitable and for then creating it?
    Hugs. You need and deserve greater understanding and help than you are getting.
  9. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Hi, and welcome.

    You should probably start your own thread - you are in the right forum. You will get more attention from others that way.

    But, while I'm here anyway...
    Oh, I remember... Kindergarten wasn't "quite" that bad - grade 1 was worse for us.

    Who did the ADHD diagnosis? And when? When did he start medications?
    I'm guessing that there is more going on than "just" ADHD.
    It might be ADHD plus other stuff (our situation).
    OR... it might be something else entirely, like something on the autism spectrum maybe??

    Here's some of the red flags I see in the info you provided...
    1) he hates doing art, and just scribbles on his papers... maybe some fine motor skills issues going on there? Can he tie his own shoes? how well does he handle buttons?
    2) taking shoes off and refusing to put them back on, refusing a teachers help in the hall... maybe some sensory issues?
    3) the whole "downhill as the day goes on"... something is overwhelming. It might be the noise - in which case, there may be auditory issues to look into later, but you need to start watching for this now.

    For starters, you might want to look into an Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluation for motor skills and sensory issues. The Occupational Therapist (OT) does not do dxes - but they do a really good job on these two areas, AND they have therapies to help. Info from an Occupational Therapist (OT) report is also of use to others - like a neuropsychologist.

    I'd be a little careful how you interpret what the school tells you is going on. Too often, school staff attribute things to "attitude" even at that young age. There may be more than one interpretation for any one behavior. "Tripping" others on the bus... maybe he's just clumsy? Or, maybe its been done to him already, so he thinks it is "the way its done"? Or... other reasons. See what I mean?

    Any chance of volunteering in the class and seeing for yourself?
  10. forkeeps251

    forkeeps251 Member

    I'm in the same boat, pretty much. I'm not sure my son quite falls into the hyperactive category, but a lot of the other behaviors are there. I'm getting frustrated as well because no matter who I've talked to previously, they all say "he is too young to be evaluated". I knew there were problems before he started school, and only now do I have a real reason to push for help (the fact that he is in the principal's office... repeatedly). I wish that I could have gotten him at least looked at before he started school, and this would have been a lot easier for ALL of us.

    Does anyone else with a Kindergartener with problems worry that this is going to ruin school for them? I'm half worried that my son is going to hate going to school after this experience.
  11. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    Your situation is not unusual at all. Schools tend to wait until the 3rd grade to take a parents concern seriously. The child has now built a negative feeling about himself, school, and the parent is consumed by just as many overwhelming feelings about school as well. Seek outside testing and push the school to do the right thing. Sometimes, it helps to get an advocate involved. The schools position is that they do not want to label the child at such an early age and that perhaps he just needs time and maturity and will magically become the child that every teacher dreams of.