New mom here with serious issues with ADHD 10 y/o son

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by ivehadit1975, Oct 28, 2013.

  1. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    Good afternoon everyone,
    I am at a loss on what to do with my Son anymore. We have been at battle for nearly 5 years now with him. He has been diagnosis with ADHD, which i knew long ago that he had but his dad (my ex) didnt believe me and wouldnt ever agree on letting me have him tested until last year.
    i'll back up a bit and tell you a little bit of our troubles.
    when son was in 1st grade is when it really started. He stayed in trouble, throwing chairs, yelling, screaming, hitting walls with his head, fist, feet, etc. At home, he would do the same. No respect for me or any other female figure. this went on for much of the year and into the 2nd grade for most of the year. I would talk to his father about it, he would constantly say that he didnt have any problems with him at his house. Well come to find out, the structure level between my home and his fathers was and still is for the most part, VERY DIFFERENT!! i've always had a set time for everything with my son due to how he acts. so i felt and still feel that he needs that structure. Where as at his fathers when he visits, he lets him run rampid, eat, drink, watch whatever and go to bed whenever he wants, sometimes as late as 2-4am playing games then sleeping until 2-3-4 oclock in the afternoon. doesnt make him bath, change clothes, brush his teeth, etc. its gotten a little (and i mean only a little) better, but nontheless, there is no structure!!
    so anyway, sorry this is so long, i'm just needing to get all this out and i have no where else to go as you will see.
    so one day during his 2nd grade year, he came home, throwing his usual fits, i walked out of the room he was in and into the kitchen. after a few minutes in the kitchen i went back in to check on him where i found him choking my yorkie!!! I flipped out!!! It was the last straw for me. He couldnt answer me as to why he was doing it. I couldnt believe what I had just seen. I immediately called his father to let him know what was going on and i told him i cant do this. I have tried and tried and with out his help, so i told him he needed to come and get him. maybe i was doing something wrong, or something. i just did not know. My husband couldnt get through to my son either. it was a constant battle between them, much like the kiddo and myself. he didnt know what to do with him either. So we packed up some bags for my son and he went to live with his father. That was by far one of the hardest things i think i've ever had to endure!! I was a failure, i've ruined my son, im a horrificly horrible mother!!! thats all i could think for so long!!
    so, with him at his fathers, we did the bi weekend visits and sometimes more during the summer, things seemed to be changing a little. he still didnt have any respect for me though, but his attitude did seem to change a little, for a short time. so after about a year and a half, the trouble started all over with my son and his father this time...he would call me asking WTH do i do!! many times over the course of the time he was there when the trouble started, myself, my husband and sons father and new wife got together to talk things out and see what we can all do to help our kiddo. nothing was helping, when i say nothing, i meant absolutely nothing. punishment was from time outs to butt whippins, to military style punishment (push ups, sit ups, running, etc etc), taking everything he loved away, games, tv, toys, etc. even emptied his room completly out with nothing more than a bed, blanket and pillow. Still it didnt matter to him. he still continued, getting in trouble at home and school. defiant, argumentative, you name it. SOOOO...after much time, talking and debating between the 4 of us and the schools help, the ex finally agreed that maybe our child needed some doctor involvement. so we set it up, he was placed on adderall...he seemed to calm quite well, could focus better, fits subsided, things started to look up. was enjoying life again. so the next time he went to the doctor for a check up, his dad said he didnt see the same signs that i saw that he was getting better. so they changed his medications to Ritalin!!! OMG, he was a zombie!! complained of headaches, stomach aches, couldnt sleep. didnt eat, it was horrid. so his father decided to take him off them cold turkey and said he was not putting him on anything again.
    so a little time goes by, about 8 months of horrible phone calls almost daily from his dad and the school, i get a final phone call from his father telling me that he was done. He said that he slapped him across the face and that infuriated me. So i told him to pack his stuff, he is coming home to me. I will not put up with him slapping him. So he came to live with me again. its been over almost 2 years now that he has been back with me. Still having issues with everything, but now he is getting older and its definitely harder. he isnt raging like he use to though. But the disrespect for me and other females is still the same. When he came back to live with me, his father agreed to let me take him to a different psychiatric and get another diagnosis for him. he finally realized that something is not right. so i found a dr. took him and he diagnosis him the same, ADHD. so he has placed him on Vyvance. which at first he was not doing so well on, so we upped his dosage. things got a little better, able to focus, did what he was told when he was told, etc. We even started seeing a therapist to see if maybe there was something going on that was making him so mad and acting the way he has been. he wouldnt talk much. we dealt with a few things, bullying and friends/teacher issues, but not much else worked. and this therapist is known to be one of the top therapist in the area for children.
    so, here we are to present day. finally!
    nothings changed, still on his medications, but wants to fight me, argue, disobey, steal, lie, etc etc etc. my husband doesnt know what to do anymore, stomps around, swings arms, argues, rolls his eyes at him. its only getting worse. I'm at a total loss. i've even upped MY medications and the dr put me on anxiety medications because i'm having such a hard time dealing with him.
    i've contemplated even sending him back to his dads, but thats not going to fix anything at all. i/we have to figure something out here at home.
    I could really use some advice, any advice at all will help i hope. thanks in advance.

  2. Gwenage

    Gwenage New Member

    I have a unique perspective as I am a mom of my own difficult child and I work in the mental health field. As a mom I sympathize. My kid is different but I know how something like this eats in to your entire life. Hopefully you have a good support system. Get yourself into therapy just for ideas and to keep yourself sane. Talk to friends. You can't help him if you can't help yourself

    I would send your son to a psychiatrist and talk to them about all the symptoms you are seeing. While he probably has ADHD, there are some other behaviors that could be something else. Keep him in therapy. Sometimes it take a kid awhile until they connects. I don't know what kind of insurance you have but you could try group therapy too. They have them for teenagers in your son's situation.
  3. givemesleep

    givemesleep New Member

    A big hug for you. I'm dealing with a very similar situation with my 9 year old son. I currently have 5 bruises on my arm from where he bit me, I have scratches on my face, hands, legs, and feet. Things are difficult, I feel very numb and have for a little over a month. He has been in the hospital since Friday, I am hoping, no praying that it helps.

    Years ago I felt guilty because I didn't like my child, I love him to pieces, but i do not like him. I no longer feel guilty for not liking him. It's very hard to like someone who is abusive towards me.

    *I hope things get better for you.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I am wondering if he had a chaotic time in his early years. Choking an animal is a big red flag for more trouble than just ADHD. Did he have many caregivers and much chaos or abuse from infancy to age three and beyond? As a layman, but one w ho has been around the block a few times, sounds like a lot more than ADHD. Many times that is the first diagnosis a child gets, but very often it is not the last. Did he see or experience any abuse? Does he pee or poop inappropriately or enjoy fire too much? Does he engage in "crazy lying" (lies even when caught with hand in the cookie jar). Does he make good, strong eye contact with you AND strangers? Does he act inappropriately friendly to strangers while not wanting you to hug him? Does he harm his little peers, talk violence, anything that is gory? Nightmares? I don't know if you are bio. mom or not so please don't be offended. Did bio. mom, whoever she is, drink or do drugs during her pregnancy? What are the family dynamics? Any siblings? With so many divorces early on these days, many kids have varying degress of attachment issues, especially when they had to deal with so many changes at such a young age, when stability is the only thing that makes them feel safe. Don't feel guilty though because it is such a common problem. However, it does lead to sometimes serious issues. My grandson is going through this now and I wonder what it will do to him in the long run.

    The more we know about his early years to now, the more we can support you with relevant ideas. Structure helps all kids maintain, but does not, in of itself, clear up a mental health or serious neurological issue.

    The very first thing I would do is find a good home for the poor dog. I had a child who was cruel to animals and he ended up killing two. You have to think about the dog's safety and how the dog may be being hurt when you don't see. Secondly, depending on your answers, I would make an appointment. with a neuropsychologist or, if he had chaos in his early years, an attachment therapist...but that is later.

    Welcome to the board, but sooooooooooo sorry you have to be here. Hugs!!!
  5. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    thank you for your reply, I have tried to get his dad to get him into therapy on a bi-weekly basis on fridays, because he gets him bi weekly and the psychologist and psychiatrist that he was seeing is now an hour away from me and only 10 minutes from him. They closed their office that was close to me. He has been able to get him in for his medications each month, but no very dependable when it comes to getting him to the child psychologist. I cant find one that is close to me that actually accepts his dads insurance. So i'll push more for his dad to get him in.
    I truely believe that difficult child has a lot more going on than just ADHD. My whole family, and his fathers family are full of members that deal with being bipolar among other things. I myself deal with being Bipolar, having PTSD, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), ADHD, and Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). however his father doesnt believe it one bit. His words are always the same, "we arent nuts like your side of the family". BS i tell him. But anyway, Like i said, i'll push him into getting him in and if he cant hold up to the appointments, then i'll drive an hour to take him myself. Thanks again.

  6. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    wow, im so sorry that you are going though what you are. thats horrible. ive been very fortunate that he has not become abusive to me or anyone else. its only been towards himself at one point and the dog. he has actually grown out of the self abuse stage and mostly all he will do now is stomp off to his room and maybe throw something. still i dont like that either.
    Much like you, I love my son more than anything, but sometimes i dont like him, being around him. I hate coming home from work some days because i never know what i'm going to be dealing with. I absolutely hate that feeling because he has always been mommas little man. very affectionate and loving. He still is to me, but when that switch flips, he just turns into a real handful.
    I will keep you and your dear child in my prayers!! I hope and pray something amazing comes of what he and you are going through and he grows out of it or something dramatic happens in a grand way!!! Huuugs!!

  7. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    I agree midwestmom,
    a little bit about his childhood. When i got preg with him, His father and I were both in the army. After I found out i was preg (which when the war broke out in iraq) i started papers to get out of the service. So we moved from ft campbell kentucky to ft hood, killeen where as soon as we got there, his father was deployed 1 week after we moved. He was not even home for the birth of difficult child. gone for a year, didnt see his son until he was actually 3 months old. so when he came back, we moved into a bigger place (when we moved initially, we had to take what we could which was a one bedroom). so once we moved, things started with his father and i...fighting all the time. but we really tried not to do it around difficult child. But you know how that works, they still hear things, but he was an infant. Anyway, not long after being home from deployment, we had to move again because the trailer we were in was falling apart. once we moved that time, his father was in the field A LOT, gone for weeks at a time, home for a few days, then off again. So pretty much i was the only one that raised him from birth until he was 3. His father deployed again for 18 months, then i got an email from him stating he wanted a divorce. So once that happened, difficult child and I packed up and moved back to my home town. Where we got an apartment and started working and he started day care. His father was not really around a lot once he got back to the states. It wasnt really until difficult child was almost 5 that he actually came back around and got out of the service. It has always been a real struggle between his father and I with him visiting his son. He gives more excuses as to why he cant get him or going to be a day late or whatever than anyone i know. difficult child now sees it and when his father tells me he isnt going to get to come, difficult child says "im use to it, he does it all the time and he spends more time with his car friends than he does me". I have no doubt that difficult child's father loves him, but he really is a selfish man and that is in part of what caused our divorce, among other things.
    So in the proceedings of our divorce, I met a man, which now is my husband. He loves and cares so much for my son, he has a 14 year old daughter himself, but never gets to see her. He is very strict on my son though, and there was a time that when he would be so difficult on my son, i would get really upset over it. But you have to think, my boy is all i had for 5 years. he was my everything every day without stopping. So having someone come in that actually was more of a disciplinarian parent, was difficult. my son loves husband too. sometimes he has thought that husband didnt like him just because of how hard he is on him, but its only because he was/is so use to me letting things go. (which i did for way to long, i spoiled him rotten!!)but there is also another reason behind that i wont get into right now. perhaps that is due for some help too in another post/thread).
    so as far as abuse, no, there has never been any sort of abuse done to him other than the fact his father wouldnt come around much for a while there. Also as far as my dog, he is no longer with us. We do have two dogs and a cat now, and he just adores them and they him. i've never seen him hurt these animals ever and if he had, i think it would be clear by their actions towards him and i've never seen a fearful bone in their body when he is around.
    Fires, no interest, Loves everyone he meets. Makes great friends, Talks to anyone and everyone. social butterfly is what i call him. Makes good grades, hates school, but what kid actually loves it lol. He's a very spiritual little fella, loves God and speaks of him often with everyone, witnesses if you will.
    anyway, last year i did finally ask my son if he wanted to know why his father and i divorced. he had been asking me for a couple of years, but i didnt feel he would really understand. So he said yes and I explained to him and was very honest and the whole time, he said that he has always thought it was his fault. i assured him that by no means was it him that caused our divorce, if anything we tried to work out our differences so that we could raise him together, but we just got to a point it was not feasible and had to split. He now understands, however he still doesnt like it. We dont talk about it because he says it just makes him mad. So that is something that I think needs to be addressed during therapy. his therapist is aware of this too.
    you mentioned talking about violence or gory stuff. Well when he has gotten mad at the boys that live across the street, which have bullied him quite a bit, he did come home one day and said "if i had a gun i would blow all their heads off". to say the least, that floored me and we talked about it. i called his therapist immediately after we talked and let him know that this needed to be addressed asap. so we went in for a session. son told the dr about what he said and he said he didnt mean it and knew that it was very wrong for him to say that, but he was just really upset and angry. ive never heard him say anything else regarding hurting someone else or himself.
    I have noticed over the past couple of years that he has become very attached to me, more so than he was. constantly around me, up my butt, doesnt play by himself, gets bored super easy, has to be doing something and wanting me or husband to play or whatever. So we do. but use to he could sit and play alone without a problem. i've always been close to him, read books with him nightly (still do sometimes) play games, snuggle and watch cartoons or whatever. ive always tried to keep him close, but it seems the older he gets its like he is missing something or afraid of missing something. i thought maybe i wasnt doing enough for him, ignoring him or whatever, but sa i've looked more into how we spend our days and nights, that wasnt/isnt the case. So i'm not sure what is going on there. I do know that when he is at his fathers, is dad doesnt do hardly anything with him. which in my initial post, i described how they are with each other.
    So i dont know. Hope this background and early years description helps in you guys helping me.

  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Not understanding personal boundaries, difficulty entertaining themselves... there's a chance this is more than ADHD. For a lot of "our" kids, the real problems don't show up until they are pre-teen or teen... when their developmental differences become more obvious.
  9. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    I agree there has to be more going on than just the ADHD. If we cant get to the bottom of this soon, i'm afraid to see what happens as a pre-teen/teenager.:nervoussmiley:

  10. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    We didn't get to the bottom of our difficult child's long list of dxes until high school... so, while sooner is always better, it's definitely not too late!
  11. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    How old was your son when you introduced him to husband?

    Onto stepfather. Here are my thoughts. First, how long did your son know him before he moved in with you and started being a disciplinarian? It worries me because husband is not his parent. Not so sure I'd allow him to step in and change everything if it were my kid. Especially if he is too strict or spanks, which he shouldn't do anyway...he is not legally a parent to the child (I know this because my son is going through a custody battle...his ex's new husband is not legally related to him and can not touch him or my son will get nasty and probably take him to court again. He has already won in court). Also, I do know my grandson is resentful of this new husband, but his ex married the guy after only being divorced for a year and she met him while he was still married and never explained anything to him. by the way, why *can't* your husband see his daughter?

    Divorced parents walk a fine line. Our own happiness matters, but excess, serious change is often NOT good for little kids and can cause additional problems to just knowing that they are divorced. by the way, my grandson is also five and very smart, but he still doesn't really understand or accept the divorce. Not in the adult sense anyway :) Unless your son has far worse behavior and does things that you don't know about when you aren't around, it doesn't seem like he has the full attachment disorder spectrum...I'd see a neuropsychologist to get him diagnosed. I assume you have full legal custody? If you share legal custody, then biological father has to agree before you can do it. I *am* guessing that if you took him for a total neuropsychologist evaluation, other issues would show up beyond ADHD though. Could be wrong...but he has done a few things that would have my Mommy Radar up, and I wouldn't trust a plain therapist to be able to handle the "heavy" stuff.
  12. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    he was 3 when i met husband. as far as when husband started disciplinary actions, they started about 6-8 months after difficult child met him. we moved in together with in months. MY son has always had a man around him, my dad lived with us before i moved back to my home town after ex asked for divorce.
    I have full custody of difficult child. As far as husband disciplining difficult child, Ex is full aware and encourages the help. he has spanked my child maybe three times, and thats only been as of late and as a last straw thing.
    (i was spanked as most of the children my age growing up were, and we all turned out just fine (this no spanking **** disturbs me. to much red tape if you ask me when it comes to a parent being able to discipline their children anymore) that being said, there is nothing wrong with spanking here and there (months and years in between in my case), now beating a childs tail on a daily basis and taking it to other extremes, thats just udderly ridiculous and would never be stood for in my home nor my ex's) other than the few spankings he has had, most of the actions are physical exercise, as in sit ups, push ups, lunges, running, sitting on the wall (which means back on the wall, knees bent like youre sitting in a chair, but your not) and also taking things away, grounding, the usual punishments. those punishments were always determined by age as to how long he would stay there, run, how many he would do, etc etc. never worked, but we kept trying. By NO means has my child ever been in any danger nor has my ex ever been in the dark on what punishments are being administered. He does/did the same things. So...that leaves us where we are now, NOTHINGS WORKING and thats why im here. trying to get passed the punishing stages into more of the psychological/neurological causes that could be happening and working towards a more peaceful wake up each day for everyone, especially my son!

    As far as my husband not being able to see his daughter is much like why i'm not able to see my daughter (which i stated in prior post that might be worth starting a new thread over), my daughters dad and my husband daughters mother BOTH have illegally kept our girls from us per our standard order of visitation agreements. But because they both come from money, live upstate NY and the other in north carolina, they have the upper hand financially on us. Our daughters are both of age to contact us and want to come live with us. however, until husband daughter graduates from school (which she has been going to since she started kindergarten and wants to finish school there) she will be coming to live with us. They speak on the phone. However, my daughter whom is 18, has been literally brain washed and kept in the shadows of her fathers family. the last time i saw her in 07, she flat out told me that she wants to come live with me and misses me, but her father wouldnt even allow me to speak on the phone with her nor did she even know that i called every single day for 5 years straight, I had printed out phone records of it and showed her. he wouldnt give her the gifts and letters, cards, nothing. Why you might ask, well lets just say that because of how controlling he is with her, he was with me and I left him high and dry when i was 19. He's never got over that and has stated that he will always hold my daughter over my head as long as he possibly can. All because he was abusive to me and i wasnt going to put up with it anymore and i left. so, without going into anymore of the story of my daughter or either of our daughters, because that is not why i wrote this post, lets get back to why i'm here.

    As far as how my husband and difficult child are together, there is a lot of love there, my sons always loved dave and accepted him and i've asked him personally recently if he just didnt like husband or he felt hurt that his dad and I were not together anymore. He said no, He doesnt like how strict husband can be sometimes, but he understands why he is that way, because I cant be. His father is just as strict when he needs to be. For us being divorced, he said that before our talk last year, yes he hated the fact we were no longer together and he tried several times to try and get his father and i back together. Which was just not going to happen. He struggles with his fathers wife as well. No respect for her, treats her much like he treats me. she's at wits end too. We all are!!
    Full attachment disorder, no, he doesnt have that. however if he has any type of attachment disorder, reactive attachment disorder seems to fit him in some cases. but not all. But i'm not a psychologist (although I received my associates in psychology). so i shant dare diagnose by any means.
    I will be speaking with his father about checking his insurance and seeing if it covers seeing a neuropsychologist, hopefully it does and we can get started on having other things tested for diagnosis, if any. (which i am pretty certain there are)

  13. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    insecure attachment, maybe?
    search on this site, for that phrase. We had a great discussion about it a year or two ago.
  14. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    When I searched that phrase, it brought up A LOT of post about it. No idea which one you're speaking of.:(
  15. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

  16. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Here are my thoughts and you can disregard them if you like.

    I don't think it's a good idea to make a child do Army-like stuff when he is being disciplined. Also, you did move in with your husband when son was at a tender age and you are assuming that what he says is really what he means. My grandson says one thing to his father, another to his mother. Young kids want to say what pleases whoever is in charge of their well being.

    Kids that young just know that there is chaos in their lives. In my humble opinion, stepparents should take it easy and not get into the disciplining the way your husband did, but even if he hadn't your son has still had a lot of chaos in his early years. The "chaos" is that many different men have been in and out of his life in three short years...his real father, his stepfather, your father...lots of change in caregivers, regardless of the sex being the same, can cause attachment problems in children. And, although you are both his parents, he has lived both with you and new husband and his father and new wife (another new person). This makes a child have insecure attachment and the child can and often does start acting out and having strange clusters of behavioral issues in various degrees.

    I do not know if your son only abused your dog one time or if he is now kind to animals because we adopted a child with insecure attachment and when he was around us he loved on all the dogs. Then he killed two. Your son was caught. He didn't expect you to walk in on him. I don't know if your son really understands the divorce or accepts or resents the stepfather. I do know he has had three men in his life, a divorce, and many moves in his early years and my suggestion for you is to move forward looking for a neuropsychologist who understands attachment issues. And don't sugar-coat it when you see the neuropsychologist or he won't have a clear picture of what your son went through. If he has any sort of insecure attachment, this can cause major, serious even criminal problems when the child is older unless he sees an attachment therapy specialist. To me, as a layperson parent who has lived with attachment disorder twice, it sounds like he has some form of insecure attachment, but, even if it is something else, or many things he needs a neuropsychologist evaluation.

    Most of us here do not believe in spanking our differently wired children. Our kids have enough trouble keeping it together. Spanking doesn't help and often amps them up even more and lets them think it's ok to hit. You may have turned out fine, but your husband is not his father and in my opinion should not be getting physical with him nor doling out Army-like discipline that doesn't work anyway. Stepparents who waltz into a kid's life, at any age, and take over, do not help the children. They need to be a friend first and back off the discipline, which should be your discipline and his father's...he sounds like he pretty much took over and is a larger than life figure in your son's life. JMO, but that isn't helping him any. You need to get husband on board with learning how to creatively parent this "differently wired" child and his therapist can step in here. Your son has had a very tough life so far with many people coming and going and many moves. Was it your fault? Life happens. Divorce is not odd, but it can disrupt a child's development if a lot happens in the very early years. Your son needs help and in my opinion your husband needs to back off and if your ex's wife is also very vocal in trying to discipline your differently wired boy, she should probably back off too...

    I'm glad you found us. We all come here when things are tough and sometimes we hear things we'd rather not hear. In your case it seems you are downplaying how chaotic your son's life has been, but from his point of view I am thinking he has absorbed life differently than you have. If you don't take it seriously, in my opinion you will have problems down the road that could be quite severe. Now is the time to get him all the help you can and to learn how to best parent him from a professional who understands children who have had a lot of discourse in their young years

    Others will come along. I'm glad to "meet" you :)
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2013
  17. ivehadit1975

    ivehadit1975 New Member

    thanks midwestmom, I've talked to my sons father and my husband and we are going to extinguish every avenue possible to get to the bottom of what is going on. They are a little reluctant to more therapy a little, but with my persuasion and them really wanting to make a difference in our difficult child, my Ex is getting me info on a neuropsychologist that is in his insurance plan.