I'm new here. :)

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by saman, Nov 30, 2007.

  1. saman

    saman New Member

    HI! I'm so glad to have found this site. I've been reading a bit and wanted to let you know I'm here!

    My name is Steph and I have a wonderful 5 year old that is (undiagnosed formally) ADHD/ODD. ODD wins out in his personality. He's been a challenging kid since he was one-ish.

    He started Kindergarten this year and while most parents are sad and nostalgic about the start, I was scared and apprehensive because we knew what we were in for. We hoped for the best, but we didn't get that! I met today with the SST (school support team) to get the ball rolling for an IEP or 504 for him. So far they have determined he qualifies for services.

    A little background: When Parker was 3.5...he was scary. He was just so full of hate and we didnt know why and we always knew he wasn't 'normal'. (who's normal? LOL) But we couldn't handle him anymore and needed some help figuring out what made him tick. We thought structure...enrolled him in the local montessori school. That was a DISASTER. Pulled him out and took him to a child psychiatric who ran baseline testing so we knew what we were working with. He's not had a FORMAL diagnosis of ADHD or ODD, but we have the charts from 3.5 that show that's where he tests. We didn't want a formal diag. at 3.5..we wanted help. With some behavior modificaiton, we could at least cope at home.

    He went to preschool last year and he did alright, but he was always poking at kids, pushing them, in the teacher's face for attention. He learned some, but he annoyed more.

    Now in kinder (half days)...he's so bright it makes me ill. But, we got his report card today showing that he couldn't count to 100 by 10s (he can..I had him do it when I looked at the card), didn't know his letter sounds (he does...made him go thru the abcs...a uh apple, b ba ball...and he went all the way thru), didn't know how to sort objects...he's been doing that since he was 2. And he couldn't count how many circles, squares, etc are in a picture..and he can. SOOOO. LOL that's the ODD coming out...he won't perform.

    Parker's biggest obstacle...he's a very big kid for his age. He's 5.5...will be 6 in june. He stands 51 inches tall and weighs 85 pounds. He looks like he's 8 or 9...so when he tosses himself on the floor in the mall...well, we get looks. And I just stare back. I never thought I'd be the mom that had to fight for their child like this. (who does!)

    But here we are. His IEP meeting went well today...the testing begins after I sign the forms next week...and hopefully we are on our way to better tomorrows.

    We are not at a point that I want to medicate him...we've done a complete diet overhaul for him and are supplementing naturally. It's a lot of trial and error, but we also know he's come a long way from last year.

    And I think only parents in this forum could possibly understand this...his teacher does behavior charts for him #1, so we know how he's doing and #2, so he can earn something tangible for good behavior. Last week he came home with his first ever all thumbs up day. I hugged him so tight and just sobbed. He looked at me and said "But mom...I had a GOOD day!" And then he came home the next day...same thing! He had another one today. 3 in a term! Most parents can expect that type of behavior from their kids...at our house, there's a PARTY for that kind of behavior! LOL

    He has a 2.5 year old sister that he is sooooo good with. He's such a loving boy when he wants to be, he hates to disappoint anyone, and never stops to think before he acts. He's seen the inside of the principal's office once already this year (luckily our principal looks mean, but he's a really good guy!)..he doesn't want to repeat. His teacher is absolutely fantastic...and for that I'm so grateful. I know how important a good understanding teacher is right now. he LOVES school...loves it...so we just have to channel him correctly.

    Like many here...no one understands. My mom says "he's being a normal 5 year old boy." Um, no. My 'friends' think I can't parent him...if they had ANY idea how much we've done for/with him just to give him a more normal childhood...they'd never say that stuff. Most aren't so much friends anymore!

    I quit my full time professional position this summer to be at home for him to provide structure. So now I'm a full time with-stay at home mom (I own my own business..very small)...and I'm loving every minute of it.

    WOW..epic. I'm just so thrilled to have found this place. Looks like a loving awesome community...so would you have a new joiner? :smile:
  2. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Welcome!!! It sounds like you are in a good space mentally and prepared to deal with this. Good for you for fighting for your son.

    If I were you I would seek out a Nuero-psychiatric evaluation. They can pinpoint any positives and deficits in different areas for your child. They are very good, most feel the best at directing you to the correct diagnosis for your child.

    My daughter K had 10 hours of neuro-psychiatric evaluation testing, it was great. He gave us his assessment and he was correct. He gave us recommendations and a list of steps we should take to get help, who we should see, etc.

    We took all of this to our school when we had our IEP meeting.

    I would also suggest "The Explosive Child" as well as to go through some of the forums here and read through what others have been through, other diagnosis's others histories, etc. You can learn a lot here!!!
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi. Not much to add other than I'd do a neuropsychologist evaluation too. They are far more intensive and cover all areas and many of us on the board feel they are the best way to find out what is really wrong with the child and lead you towards help. Are there are psychiatric or substance abuse issues on the family tree?
    I would go slow with medications too. If he's not really ADHD (it has many mimickers) then stimulants and Straterra can make him worse, not better and you aren't sure what you're dealing with yet. From long experience, I take school evaluations with a grain of salt, but they can get your son in the doorway for interventions. Does he seem sensitive to fabrics, noise, change, crowds? Does he make good eye contact and play appropriately with toys? Does he know interact in a give-and-take way with his peers? Has he had any speech delays or motor problems? Others will pop in. Weekends can be slow. One last word: I'd take family "advice" with a grain of salt too. Focus on helping your child and store away "helpful" comments from parents, friends, sibs, etc. They don't know any more than you know and I think you're right to pursue answers to your questions.
  4. saman

    saman New Member

    To answer some questions:

    No substance abuse, but my mother was diagnosed depressed at one point in her life...and recently after divorcing my father (of 35 years...Ugh!)

    Honestly...We really don't want him medicated. I know this piece is a VERY sensitive subject and very personal. We aren't closing the door completely...but He'd have to get MUCH worse for us to do that. Knowing that diet change and behavior modification have helped, we hope to continue down that path. I want to make sure we are at the root of his problem and know there isn't anything else that can be done naturally before we're agreeing to medicate him.

    Fabrics, he's fine with. Noise...well. He seems to get worse when there is a lot of activity around him...he definitely feeds off the noise and upbeat sort of situations. Change is hard for him...we really have to let him know what's coming. It's not so much things like transitioning from playing to bathtime. But things like...He needs to come in from outside because it's time to go to choir. He enjoys a lot of things, but he REALLLLY lkes the outdoors and riding his bike, so anything that takes him away from that...that's no good. Crowds...He just gets really rambunctious. He's never scared of that stuff...he just gets wild trying to get everyone's attention.

    He's very social, so the eye contact is fine...but interaction with peers is problematic. He always wants to control the situation and most other children really don't like that. He's very demanding.

    No speech delays at all. And motor wise, he's always been ahead. He was RUNNING at 9 months old. Training wheels came off his bike when he was 3. LOL He's a big kid, yet very agile and athletic, believe it or not! He's been jumping off our curbs by our house over a year now on his bike...so, at 4 years old. :smile:

    I did want to say that I have had help from a very good friend that has almost fully recovered her autistic son using natural 'remedies' a naturopath...and her older son is ADHD, so she's had some really great things to help me with. We actually have Parker on a very small dose of caffeine in the morning...it has the opposite affect in him...he instantly calms. He also receives a high dose of fish oil and a great multivitamin every day. We give him melatonin at night for a good night's sleep. We've removed a lot of 'kid foods' (LOL) from his diet and the whole family is on a more whole foods approach. Am considering removing casein from his diet as well. We had b12 with folic in his regime as well, but my husband forgot it one day...and it made no difference...so we're leaving that out and now looking at adding in Gingko...we'll see. :smile:

    He is not fully vaccinated at this point...and probably won't be. And I know this is controversial as well, but I firmly believe that the MMR that he received at 1 was the tipping point for him for a toxic level in his body. He changed. Then, we decided that for his kinder shots, we would allow the booster MMR because I know that's a big one (we didn't do the 2 others cocktail style that they wanted to do). We ended up using a VitaminA regimin on him to try and get the toxins out...he was WILD after that shot. We're back to his old baseline now, for which I'm grateful. And I do want to say, I'm not anti-vax at all..my daughter is fully vaxed, but I do believe that there are some kids that simply can't handle it.

    ANYWAY! LOL Thank you for the warm welcome...and I do want to pick up that book, it sounds great. We are going to pursue the neuropsychologist as well. As for the school testing...yeah. I"m not thrilled at the testing idea at all, but if it means that they have to make adaptations for him to learn...I'll sign on! :smile: But that's about all I'll use it for. And I want to be able to observe the testing (I think i've become *that* parent...never thought that I would be!) We've done everything on our own to this point...and I know my kid, as we all do. No school district could even touch on what these kids go thru or how frustrated they are that they can't just do the things they know they should do!

    Anyway...THANK YOU!
  5. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    Hi there, just wanted to add my welcome!

    Also wanted to reassure you. Don't ever second guess yourself about your choice in medicating your child or not. in my humble opinion, some kids need it, some do not. You're the mom.

    I think, you know best.

    Glad you found us, but sorry you had to.
  6. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! Can't agree more about the neuropsychologist and the Explosive Child. Remember: the evaluation done by the school board has an educational thrust. It's not meant to "diagnose" the problem. A private assessment has the intent to work on the actual situation as hand, but a neuropsychologist really looks at the whole child rather than "snippets" of behavior.


    Beth :santa:
  7. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Just wanted to add my welcome!