New to board

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by JamieM, May 2, 2008.

  1. JamieM

    JamieM New Member

    I ran across this site today as I was looking for info/support for parents with children with ADHD/ODD. My son was diagnosed at age 4 with ADHD. He takes 54 mg Concerta. He is now 6 and has been having issues at school this year. He has started having issues at home as well. His dr. has recommended that he is seen by a pyschologist and has a pyschoeducational screening done. He has an appointment for that on the 22nd. After researching on the internet and reading ODD sxs, I really feel that he is displaying ODD behaviors. husband and I are extremely frustrated. We feel like we spend more time having to put out fires then we can spend with him and have a pleasant time. I feel that my 16 yo is missing out on our attention as well. I am glad that there is somewhere you can go for support and know that you aren't the only one dealing with this. Any advice from others going through this will be greatly appreciated.
  2. ChefPaula1965

    ChefPaula1965 Oh my aching back!!

    first of all Gentle Hugs... and Welcom to this board.. this is a nice soft place to land..
    I am sorry for your suspicion of ODD... our "difficult child" as we call them... (girft from God) are often difficult and the general public has NO idea what we as parents go through.. they are mostly very judgemental... here we understand and many of us have been there done that...
    could you please set yourself up with at profile so we can know more about you?
    thanks paula
  3. Christy

    Christy New Member

    Welcome to the board. You will find a wealth of information and overwhelming support here!

    I feel your pain, my son was a nightmare at school. I was so tired of constantly dealing with problems created there. My solution is not for everyone, but we decided due to my son's special needs, to homeschool. It works wonderfully for us and has elimanated much stress and allowed me to be less of the enforcer and more of the parent. Others choose to leave school issues at school and focus only on issues that come up at home. Another suggestion is to read The Explosive Child by Ross Greene. He provides lots of info on avoiding meltdowns in the home and keeping the peace. This will benefit the entire family. A thorough evaluation such as a neuropsychologist evaluation can shed some light on your sons isssues. Information on a neuropsychologist can be found at a local children's hospital. Many will caution you here, that if your sons issues are more that ADHD, there is a strong possibility that stimualnt medications such as concerta will make the problem worse, ie, less ADHD but more agitated and explosive.

    Good luck in finding the answers to you struggles. Post often and let us know how things are going!
  4. JamieM

    JamieM New Member

    Thanks for the support! I look forward to posting here. As I am sure I will need to often.
  5. Star*

    Star* call 911

    HI and welcome to the family!

    Glad you found us - looking forward to having you as part of the board.

  6. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi Jamie, welcome!

    We had psychoeducational testing done with-our son a few yrs ago. It was very useful. We did discover several delays (the psychiatric actually said Learning Disability (LD) but clarified that they were delays that were not permanent, just slooowwwwww) and it really helped me change my attitude toward my difficult child.

    The one thing I did not like was that the psychiatric was connected to an educational facility that we were urged to sign up with. We thought that was stacking the deck, so we went down the street to Sylvan. I suspect that the outcome was the same; we just didn't like the high pressure tactics.
    Best of luck!
    Oh, and read The Explosive Child by Ross Greene. Then read it again. :)
  7. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Welcome Jamie! It's great you are having screening done. I understand the feeling of constantly putting out fires and feeling like it's hard to just spend some quality time with him. My difficult child is a lot like that so we have to work really hard at finding some of those times. I also know what you mean when you say you feel your 16 year old is missing out. I think our daughter has at times so we, again, work hard at trying to find special time just for her. It's also important to find time for yourself and for you and husband. Easier said than done, I know! Again, welcome and I'm glad you found us!
  8. muts80

    muts80 New Member

    I'm a newbie here too, and it's so wonderful to know that there are other parents out there struggling with their difficult child's! I know what you mean when you talk about the other child suffering. I have 2 other children that are pushed aside constantly because my husband and I are so focused on difficult child. Our family rarely has the chance to go out and do things that are fun because we are in constant worry of how difficult child is going to act. We are all here to support you in any way we can. WELCOME TO THE "FAMILY"!
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome to the board.
    Perhaps you should have a re-evaluation with a neuropsychologist. THey do very intensive testing and are often able to spot things that other professionals miss. ODD is not a stand alone diagnosis. and ADHD is almost always the first diagnosis. our children get. It may be that more is going on than ADHD/ODD. If so, stimulants will not help and can make things worse. He is NOT a "bad" boy and can't help that he takes up a lot of time. Once you get a thorough evaluation, you will probably know better how to help yourself and your entire family. I have a few questions:
    Did your son have typical early development or were there delays, like in speech or eye contact or peer play? Any mood disorders or substance abuse on either side of the family tree?
    You may want to do a signature like I did below.
    Again, welcome!
    Others will come along.
  10. JamieM

    JamieM New Member

    Thanks for the support. I will def. get the book and read it. Just to tell you a little more about my boy..he makes 3's & 2's..equivalent to what would be A's & B's in school. The only issues he has as far as school work goes is his writing is horrible at times. He can write neatly if he tries. He also sometimes daydreams and will not focus on morning work. It takes him 50 min to write one sentence. Our main concern is his behavior. I know if we arent able to get that in control then it can lead to delays. He does have speech issues, but he has been in speech since kindergarten and those are diminishing. At home it is difficult to get him to settle down for homework. He argues with adults, defiant and doesnt comply with requests, has tantrums, easily frustrated, annoys others on purpose, when he is angry he says he hates me or his dad. He knows what consequences of his misbehavior will be ahead of time and tries to bargain with us after he has misbehaved.

    To answer your questions Midwestmom, he had typical early childhood development..I did notice he was a little fussier and harder to get down at night, but I dont know if this had anything to do with ADHD. My brother was ADHD, but back then wasnt diagnosed. However, I realized later he displayed the symptoms. My son talked early, walked at what is the norm for development and started reading before starting school. He was in daycare or preschool from about 12 weeks old. He has never had any problems with peers. He plays well with others.

    Last year he had some difficult days, but nothing like this year. It seems that his issues have escalated this school year. I had wondered at one point if it was issue with the teacher, but he now has problems at home as well. I really think it is the structure and the authority he has a problem with. At his afterschool program they rarely have issues. I am praying when I pick him up today he says..hey mom, I didnt have to pull a ticket. I got a green! It gets so frustrating to get a note home ever couple of days about misbehaving. His physician suggested the rule out any delays because he knows next year will be harder for him..his physician has also suggested that he may have ODD, but further assessments would determine that. So, he referred us to a psychologist. Now, I wonder..How do I prepare my son for this and what happens next? I have read that that there are 3 sessions to the psycho ed evaluation..For those that have expereienced it..what happens?
  11. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member

  12. looking4hope

    looking4hope New Member

    Another welcome!

    Your difficult child sounds like mine and so many others I've read about on this board -- they start out with an ADHD diagnosis and then the behavior escalates. I agree with your physician that your son should be evaluated, but I would add a neuropsychologist as well. If you can get a referral, definitely go for it!

    I would also write a letter to the school asking them to do testing for learning disabilities. If your son is out of the classroom as much as mine was, then he isn't getting the instruction he needs and is entitled to under the law. You need to write a letter that outlines the problems your son is having at school, letting them know he's been diagnosis with ADHD, and also ask for a full psychiatric profile. Many school districts will not accept outside diagnosis, so cover all of your bases. Make sure you either send the letter certified with a receipt, or hand deliver it and get a receipt (which is what I did). Once they accept the letter, the clock is ticking for them to do the testing.

    The advantage for your son is that the school will now be obligated to work with you to create a behavior support plan at a minimum, and provide other services if he is found to have a learning disability. Check out the Special Education forum for more info. As a teacher and a parent of a difficult child, we need to make sure they are protected at school and that teachers and staff help your child to succeed at school. Good luck, and let us know how the evaluations turn out!
  13. JamieM

    JamieM New Member

    Thanks Lookingforhope. The school is involved already at this point. They have on record that he is ADHD. His pediatrician specializes in ADHD and has been in contact with his teacher. He has speech services through the school right now, but hopefully after the evaluations and assessments this summer we will get other services added to the IEP if needed. He really isnt out of the classroom much, but I know that the teacher is dealing with alot of disruption from him. I just want to get this process started and I hope that we can get an IEP in place before school starts or at the beginning of the next school year. I want 2nd grade to better than 1st has been.
  14. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Hello JamieM. I just wanted to add my welcome.

    I agree with MidwestMom in that ADHD and ODD are often indicators of an underlying disorder, rather than a standalone diagnosis. Symptoms, if you will.

    A neuropsychologist evaluation is one of the best ways to pinpoint the cause of your son's difficult behaviour, so that you can put the right interventions in place.

    If you're looking into an IEP, check out our Special Education forum. You will be able to get great information on how best to proceed.

    Glad you found us.
  15. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Hi and Welcome!!

    It sounds like your hands are pretty full. I think if you work to find all of what is going on you will be able to manage things a little easier. Most, if not all, of us came here with ADHD and/or ODD diagnosis. Pretty much, if you handle the underlying problems, the ODD will go away. NOT always, but most of the time.

    I think your son needs to be tested for learning disabilities, esp dysgraphia. This is like dyslexia for handwriting, or that is the easy explanation our developmental pediatrician gave us. It way over-simplifies it, but gets a bit of the problem through. It can explain the 50 minuts sentences.

    With ANY child where ADHD is suggested, I think seeing a pediatric neurologist for a sleep deprived EEG should happen. Our daughter was diagnosed with inattentive ADHD. I pushed and shoved until we got in to a neurologist and he did the sleep-deprived EEG. She has epilepsy - a form where her brain just cuts out for a very short period. She literally would have 90 or more seizures an HOUR. Very hard to learn when you are missing that much. I would NEVER have caught this without others on this board strongly suggesting this testing.

    It also sounds like having an occupational therapist test for sensory integration problems is in order. The school has OTs and will test if you request it (chekc the Special Education forum to see how to formally request testing). My youngest sometimes tantrums, shows signs of ADHD,etc... but treatment for sensory itnegration disorder (Sensory Integration Disorder (SID)) has stopped most of it.

    Psychiatry is a difficult field. So much of it is subjective. One way to keep things on track from the parents end is to create a Parent Report. this is a way of keeping records that some moms here developed. I have found it invaluable - I keep all the things related to my difficult child in the 3 ring binder. I have copies of the report in there so I can give them to doctors, therapists, whomever. I am careful in only giving people what they need to treat my child. Someitmes info can be misused, so some care should be taken.

    If you go to the FAQ forum, there is a thread (the second one, I think) on Parent Input. I think it would be helpful for you, just to get things organized. I put a small photo of my son on the beginning of each section (and partway through if it is very long). This helps the reader remember WHICH child, and that it is about a PERSON. The photos copied very well when I made copies.

    Well, sorry if I was too long. Welcome to our little corner of the web!