My first time!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by rob#30, Aug 7, 2008.

  1. rob#30

    rob#30 hangin in there

    OK, this is the first time i have EVER done anything like this! I dont even usually talk to anyone about my son because I really didnt think anyone else could understand. My son is 12 years old. He has always been a "difficult" child. He was not diagnosed until fall of 2006 with ADHD. Last year ODD was added. Unfortunately, his Pediatrician never actually verbalized the ODD diagnosis with- me. I just found this out by reading his file @ the docs office. It problem sounds crazy but I didnt know he had ODD. Ive never even heard of it before! Ive been just thinking he had ADHD & trying to deal with that! I avoided medications for as long as I could. Finally gave in over the summer after I had my daughter in August of 2007. Started him on Ritalin. It was unbelievable the difference I saw in him! It was wonderful, for about 3 months. Slowly it seemed as if the medications werent working anymore?? Changed to adderall. Same thing, worked good but insomnia was so bad I had to take him off it. Tried Melatonin, didnt work. Now on Concerta, it "works" but Im begining to wonder if there really is any medications that can do what I thought they were supposed to do! After reading some of the threads here I think I have been looking at this all wrong. Its so hard because people act like they know where your coming from when you "vent" about your child but I cant really tell people what really goes on most of the time. Swearing at me, throwing things, constantly aggrevating me, his brother etc. The unbearable needy-ness he has with me. 20-30 phone calls a day from him all summer while im at work. His bio dad is absolutely usless. wont even acknowledge that he has a problem. Thinks he needs a "good *** whoopin" and that will straighten him out! Im at the end of my rope. I am so scared of what is coming in the future. He just got caught stealing from his step-dad(money). Last week I found out he was smoking pot. Hes 12 years old! He has had his cell taken away, XBox taken, and he has not seen the light of day since I caught him. Now what??? I will be drug testing him weekly. But how can I ever trust him again? Just looking for some input:(
  2. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Welcome! Glad you found us.

    It is important to be patient with the ADHD medications. Has the doctor considered Straterra yet?

    We tried Ritalin, Concerta, Straterra and finally Adderall helped my difficult child to focus enough at school to stop the phone calls at work every day.

    Sometimes the stimulant medications (ritalin, concerta, adderall, etc.) can make other mental health issues worse. It might be wise to read up on Bipolar. Do you have any mental health in the family?
  3. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    Welcome - I am sorry you are going through all this!

    My added suggestion is to make sure he does not have unsupervised access to the internet. Lot's of bad things he can hook up with.

    Any idea how long he has been smoking pot? I don't know much about kids and drugs but there are programs out there. I work for a Chemical Dependency facility (office support - not direct care so am not familiar with the program details). Earlier this week I called my Admissions Officer to confirm a date of birth - yep - the kid was 12 years old. Are the auhorities involved or is this something you caught and am taking care of on your own?

    What does he do while you are at work?

    We will be here for you and hope someone will have input that will help.

    Hang in there - stay strong.
  4. rob#30

    rob#30 hangin in there

    Yes we did try Strattera. That was the very first thing he was ever put on. He took it at night and once the Ritalin was added he was taking both. I really hated him being on 2 diff medications so i chose to take him off the Strattera since the Ritalin was working so well @ school which I thought was most important. I take Zoloft for anxiety, depression. His bio dad is a classic sociopath. He really makes my sons condition so mouch worse. Calls him a baby, screams & yells at him etc... Now hes stealing and experimenting with- pot. I cant even tell his dad. I just got done dealing with- family court for 3 years. His dad did everthing in his power to get custody of him & his brother so he didnt have to pay child support. He lost every single attempt but not before child protect serv was called a couple of times (unfounded) Crazy accusations were made (thrown out of court) however, there is no doubt in my mind that if his father finds out he is having these "new" problems he will use it against me & have me back in court. I feel so alone out here with this one. I cant tell my friends and coworkers about him stealing & smoking pot. I dont want everyone to think of him that way, not let their kids come around, etc...
  5. rob#30

    rob#30 hangin in there

    I am trying to handle it alone. As far as I can tell he just tried it for the first time this summer, like a month ago. Hes home with his 15 yr old brother during the day. He has access to NOTHING now that hes on lock down but he has had access to internet and already downloaded objectionable things. Its one thing after another!!!
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Welcome. I have a few questions for you:
    1/Has this child ever had a complete, intensive neuropsychologist evaluation? Are you satisfied that ADHD is his problem?

    2/Any psychiatric or substance abuse on either side of the biological family tree?

    3/How was his early development--speech, eye contact, motor skills, pottying, his ability to relate well to his peers, academics? Any sensitivities to clothes, food, noise? Can he transition well from one activity to another?

    These will help us help you. It may be that the ADHD medications don't keep working because something else is going on besides ADHD/ODD. His behavior sounds extreme for just that. Is he getting any school interventions?

    Others will drop by. Welcome :)
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I did not catch that he was using pot at first.
    If so, you have a double problem, and pot can actually be MORE than pot (had a daughter who was a drug addict and we thought all she was doing was pot). Many mood disordered kids self-medicate and it DOES NOT help. Are you aware that ADHD stims are highly abused? My daughter and her friends used them. They are crushed in pillcrushers and snorted, alone or along with things that are even stronger. My daughter started pot at twelve. To be honest, that is young, and alarming and a signal that something else is going on. I wish I'd known then what I know now...I had no idea she'd been using anything at that time...dummy me...
    I don't like stims for teens who tend to mess with illegal substances now that I know what I know. I think to myself, "Are these doctors REALLY that clueless about the abuse of them???" The ADHD stims were her and her crowd's real drug of choice, although they were only busted for pot...haha, if I"d only known. She is clean now.
  8. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Welcome. This is a safe haven here.

    Some suggestions.

    First, especially if you need to keep things confidential, make sure you do not have anything public on this forum that could identify you or your children. In other words, no names of people, names of places etc. Keep these as general as you can because, sorry to say, your problems then could be anybody's because too many people have similar issues. So lose yourself in anonymity and pseudonyms.

    Find a name for yourself as a pseudonym which will not identify you. That way you will be much freer to post, knowing you can't be tracked. And no matter how tempting, do not tell people you know about this website. Even other parents of problem kids. it's really hard to leave them in the cold, but you especially need your confidentiality respected. Let's just hope someone else directs people who need it to this site, or they find it for themselves. Just as long as the person on the screen can't be linked for sure to the person you are in your street.

    Second - a book that has helped a lot of us is "The Explosive Child" by Ross Greene. There are other books, other ideas etc but THIS book is something you can do NOW in terms of parenting and discipline. It's also probably easier than your current struggle. It's something you can do while waiting for all the medical stuff etc to get sorted out.

    Third - do a sig when you can (remember the confidentiality, though).

    Fourth - not that you're doing this, but when you reply to a post, you don't need to reply to everyone in a separate message. One message fits all. if you have something to say to someone individually you can either send them a PM (Private Message) so only they can see it, or you simply address them by name in the one message. For example, you might write, "BBK, you mentioned X, I wanted to assure you we've dealt with that. And Marg, I think that it's Y sometimes but we've done all we can."

    It makes it a lot less trouble and time for you.

    Following on from MidwestMom's thought on medication abuse - if the medications aren't working too well, how certain are you that he's taking them, and not cheeking them to spit out later and swap for other drugs? You might do well to also post on the Substance Abuse forum and pick their brains over there, to help you catch on fast to any tricks he might be trying on you.

    Here's hoping you've got on to him early.

    Glad you found us.

  9. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    I am glad you found us. One thing I wanted to say was that what your son does is not your fault. Do not blame yourself. I can understand not wanting the whole world to know what he is doing (drug wise) I would try to get him help now why he is young. Does the older brother smoke pot? Is that where he got it from?

    Young kids do bad things. I remember when I was in high school meeting a drug dealer who was in 5th or 6th grade.

    Good luck to you, and I also reccomend seeing a child psychiatrist. It sounds like what your son has going on is beyond a gp.
  10. So Tired

    So Tired Member

    Welcome! You are definately not alone -- we understand how bad the behaviors can get, and you are right; A lot of people will say "oh, it's typical teen (typical teen) behavior" It is hard for others to understand the enormous pressure a difficult child puts on the whole houshold. You are always wondering what the heck will hit the fan next!

    On the plus side, it seems like you are addressing difficult child's problems early, I wish I had taken things more seriously earlier. I kept thinking he would improve with maturity. WRONG!

    I hope you find the help and support you need here....
  11. Christy

    Christy New Member

    Glad you've posted but sorry you needed to find us. You will not be alone here. We understand!!

    I just wanted to pop in to offer support and second a few of the recommendations made to you already.

    The Explosive Child is a must read. It will help you deal with the ODD behaviors by helping you put things into perspective. You can then focus on the more severe issues.

    It sounds like you are dealing with more than ADHD behaviors so I would consider taking him for a neuro-psychiatric evaluation. While I know ODD is a dianosis, it is more of a symptom of other conditions and since the ADHD medication does not seem to be effective, a mood disorder might be the root of the problem.

    Good luck in seeking the help you nees. I look forward to hearing more from you.
  12. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    I want to add my welcome, also.

    I second the recommendation to getting The Explosive Child by Ross Greene. There are other good books too, but that one is such a great resource to have in your parenting arsenal.

    I completely understand about not wanting your personal business being broadcast all over the place. Keep pertinent details out. Such as exact locations and first and last names. I also don't give the name of this site out to anyone I know in person. I like my privacy.

    It's not uncommon for medications to work for a short time and then see the positive changes begin to evaporate. Yes, some medications do take time to see changes.

    Has he ever been seen, or diagnosed, by anyone other than a pediatrician? Though great for routine child medical care, they are mostly out of their sphere of expertise when it comes to our types of kids. I would suggest a psychiatist with experience treating children. However, in all honesty, it can be a challenge to find one that is up on their game. Many times, the really good ones aren't taking new patients!

    From what you describe, there is more than ADD/ADHD (which is an initial diagnoses most of us get) going on. A neuropsychological evaluation is also very helpful. Those are done by a psychologist who has a specialty in the brain. It's a grueling process of tests, but you also get a wealth of information. The first I found through a children's hospital. The second I found through a pediatric neurologist at a university teaching hospital. They usually have a list of them. If you can connect with one of those, it's another great resource.

    I don't have any experience with a uncooperative x. My husband has made butt whoopin' comments when he's very frustrated with our difficult children.Though, it is common that others, especially those that don't have to deal with a difficult child on a daily basis, think that a good butt whoopin' would cure all their ills. How I so wish! You have to learn to tune out and do what you think is best. I know it's much more complicated when it's your kid's father.

    Though none of us on this forum are trained experts, our experience comes from being in the trenches. You do not have to take our advice. You are free to follow your own path and do what you think is in the best interest of your child.

  13. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi Rob,
    so sorry about your son's issues (I can commisserate, believe me!). And mostly, I'm so sorry about your ex. I have to say, no matter how much I may complain about my husband, it's nothing like what some of you here have to go through.
    I would limit visits with-bio dad as much as possible, to lessen his impact. I'd do it in a
    nice way, so he has no idea it's because he's a jerk.
    It seems clear that ex isn't going to learn or be taught anything, so why bother?
    I can't imagine how hard it must be to deal with-a difficult child and an ex like that. You seem to be doing a good job holding your head above water.
    Wish I coud offer advice. But I can send a cyber hug. {{{hugs}}}
  14. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    I haven't read through all of the other posts completely - just skimmed them - but I do strongly agree that you need someone other than the pediatrician in this case. They are way out of their league when it comes to brain disorders. A lot of disorders have a lot of overlap symptoms and what looks like ADHD can actually be something else, like anxiety for example. Anxiety mimics ADHD in a lot of ways. Because of all of the overlap, you really need a psychiatrist, therapist and possibly a neuropsychological evaluation. Further, as you'll see as you spend more time on the board, most of our kiddos start out with an ADHD diagnosis and then other diagnosis's are either added or the ADHD is replaced. ADHD seems to almost be a catch-all diagnosis these days. As is ODD.

    Welcome to the board.
  15. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Hi and Welcome!! This is a safe place to get support and advice. I don't have advice other than to strongly suggest you read The Explosive Child, get an appointment with a psychiatrist, drug test and continue to do so randomly. If and when more than pot shows up you may need to think about a "dual diagnosis" program to address mental health issues and substance abuse issues.

    Keep your chin up - remember we are here for you and we have been there done that, so we really understand!