Oppositional Defiant Disorder

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Charlene1, Oct 12, 2006.

  1. Charlene1

    Charlene1 New Member

    My son just turned 5 and is a holy terror. Last night and tonight he literally tore his room apart, threw his bed upside down and ripped up everything in sight.At times he can be a sweet child but then the devil comes out in him. My boyfriend seems to think I let him get away with everything. I took him to a shrink and they said he was ODD and to suck it up. Anybody got any ideas. This kid is driving me crazy.He hates everybody when he is in this mood. Calls himself stupid and hates himself. Does it get better or worse?
  2. Well, darlin', you came to the right place. People here will give you lots of ideas. Here's my two cents. First, my personal opinion is that your shrink was worthless. For one thing, 5 is pretty young to be slapped with the ODD label. They were very careful to point out that my son "fit the criteria" for ODD but wouldn't call him that because he was really too young for it. Others here will tell you that ODD doesn't travel alone; there is probably some other problem going on. They'll give you lots of advice on what kind of docs to see. The part about just sucking it up is totally off. There are a lot of things you can do. Check out the various posts on the site and get some ideas that work for you. Maybe your son needs medications, maybe he doesn't, but you need a good doctor to help you.

    Finally, go get the book called The Explosive Child by Ross Greene. It has great techniques for dealing with youngsters like your son. I swear by it, as do many others here. It's not that you're letting him get away with stuff; he just needs a different approach. The conventional behavior modification techniques just plain don't work with these kids and you need different ones.

    There is a lot of hope that things will get better. We saw a number of docs, tried a lot of techniques, and then tried four different drugs. The last (Lamictal) worked well for my son. His bad days now are like his good ones a year ago.

    Others will be along soon with good advice. Hang in there, lady -- you are NOT alone.
  3. Ltlredhen

    Ltlredhen New Member

    Hi Charlene,

    Welcome to the board. Here are a few questions for you if you don't mind answering....

    Any family history of mental illness such as depression, bipolar or anyone said to be a little "odd"?

    Do there seem to be triggers that make your son tantrum or is this something that happens just because he is told "NO"?

    We aren't doctors here but any information you want to share will be helpful to those of us who may have been there and done that already.

    Hang in there,

  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome! Do put down your family history--that could help us out. Any mood disorders or substance abuse on either side of the family tree? ODD almost never stands alone. Have you taken your child for a multi-disciplanry evaluation? Has your child reached all milestones on time? Can he socialize well? Could be a lot of stuff going on that hasn't been caught yet. If you actually saw a Child psychiatrist (with the MD after his name) I'd quickly find another one. He doesn't sound very good and certainly isn't very helpful. I wonder if he'd just "suck it up" if it was HIS child.
  5. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    My difficult child was diagnosis'd with ODD when he was four years old. I knew he was ADHD, ODD by the time he was two. No one would "officially" diagnosis him till he was four. He was classic in symptoms. Good luck....it's the most difficult thing we've ever had to deal with. I've only seen it get worse over the years.
  6. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Hi and welcome. I'm so sorry you have to be here. But the good news is that you aren't alone any longer.
    I also have a few questions:
    Which area of Canada are you in? (We have members in various areas that may be able to point you toward resources)
    Did your son develop normally?
    How does he do in school?
    With friends or peers?
    Does he have any health issues (chronic ear aches, allergy, sleep difficulties)?
    I look forward to getting to know you better.
  7. transformtriumph

    transformtriumph New Member

    Welcome! What a shame that a professional would say that he is ODD and "suck it up"! He should have suggested appropriate therapeutic interventions. I would look into a therapist that specializes in children.
  8. Charlene1

    Charlene1 New Member

    Actually, there is depression in the family. He had a lot of ear infections as a young child but tubes took care of that. It seems that all my kids have problems and I just dont know where to turn for the proper help. He seems to have his fits just before his dad comes home about 4:30. Weve gone a couple of days without one big blowup because i quickly try to change his mood.
  9. Charlene1

    Charlene1 New Member

    He developed normally, he is actually quite smart. to smart sometimes. As for school that is a horrible fight every time. It starts the night before. He goes every other day, all day. he cries and whines . He even wakes in the middle of the night stressed out about it. In the morning it is worse. He wets himself, wont wear underwear or socks. Now he is refusing to eat lunch at school. He also cries at school. he says he has more fun at home. I think he just doesnt like taking orders from someone other than me. I run a daycare so he has always been with me. We had problems in preschool last year as well. he never wanted to go. He goes to school with a couple of kids that I babysit but he says they dont play with him. He seems to have trouble making friends, because the friends are always at his house. He has a bit of asthma but it only acts up in the winter, otherwise he is healthy. I have a dr apptment on Friday and i am ready to demand drugs for this child. Is that wrong?
  10. Charlene1

    Charlene1 New Member

    Hi Pamela, curious to know what kind of syptoms your child had at 4. Idont like the sounds of that, that it gets worse. This kid is scary now. Dont get me wrong, i love him but my god somedays its tough not to want to strangle him.
  11. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Charlene, hi. With the hisotry of the family, I'd keep a good eye on him and have him re-evaluated soon--with an eye on possible early onset bipolar. ODD rarely stands alone and bipolar is hereditary. No, you're not bad for asking for medications, but be aware that they will probably start him on stimulants first. I have no idea why, but that's what they usually do. And, if he has a mood disorder, stimulants and Straterra can and often does make the child significantly worse, and doesn't help. You need a good psychiatrist, in my opinion, with the MD and maybe a neuropsychologist too. My son saw both. He's 13 now and doing well after being a very volatile (mild description) toddler. He was very destructive--now he's mellow as they get.
  12. OK, I threw my two cents in already but here is a cent more. Please get a really good evaluation for your cub. Lots of docs will write prescriptions for various drugs but you want to be confident that your doctor really has a handle on what the real problem is and your best drug options. We tried three drugs before Lamictal and at least a couple made my boy significantly worse. The right drug has made a huge improvement in him. Things do NOT have to get worse! Many people on this site can assure you that things can get so much better. The drugs aren't magic for us, but they've made my cub "normal" enough that we can make progress with other behavior modification techniques. But, we have to specifically teach him things that other cubs pick up as they go, mostly in getting along with people. The Explosive Child is a great book. Please read it and please get a good evaluation for your cub!
  13. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    Charlene, from the age of two on I had no doubt there was more going on than the terrible twos. At age four (FINALLY), he was diagnosis ADHD and ODD by a child psychiatrist. She was appalled at the things he would do at that young age. He tortured our Dalmatian, made me black and blue, screamed at me, wouldn't stay in his car seat, etc. He's always loved the outdoors, so I had dead bolts on the exterior doors so he wouldn't run out. We've not had even one really quiet day since we adopted him at 1 day old. When I'm with other children I realize that I've forgotten how grown-up an eleven year old should be and how much fun it can be to not have to discipline every single day. There are those who say he shouldn't be disciplined every day, but how does one let this horrible behavior be ignored? Yes, I pick my battles......I'm only talking about the serious stuff.

    There are others you will find who have benefited greatly from behavior modifications. Your child may, too. In our case he was medicated so that he could even catch my eye while I was trying to work with him on behavior mods. Nothing has ever worked, but we still try. 'Guess we'll never give up. Your little one is so little. Have as many good times as you can find. They are ALL precious despite the difficulties and I know how much you love him, as I do mine.
  14. Icantwin

    Icantwin New Member

    Hello All...I am right there with Charlene1. My daughter turned 5 in May and I am losing my mind! She started K in Sept and things have spiraled out of control since then. She was diag at 4 with possible ODD and Anxiety disorder. After trying every think I could think of to make thing better her 5th birthday and summer seemed to do the trick. It was just a vacation! Things are much much worse than before and getting even worse. The Dr. told me I needed to keep trying, use charts, rewards, anything to try to motivate her to behave. My husband thinks I am nuts...he thinks I don't discipline her enough...she just laughs at me and goes right back to the bad behavior. We have another evaluation scheduled (on the waiting list) for November sometime...I just don't know what to do next. Everyday is a battle it starts in the morning before school and continues as soon as she gets home! I am glad I found this site...at least I can vent! Thanks for that!
  15. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Icantwin, Welcome to our site. I copied your post into a new thread--it will be easier to sort out answers since you are dealing with some different issues beyond the difficult behaviors.
  16. bobbde

    bobbde New Member

    I am not sure how to do this all, but I could use some friends that understand ODD and ADHD in a great 8 year old. My every day friends struggle with this because I dont really understand it myself. I am in a relationship that is new, but now in question because I have not been able to assist my son with dealing with his behavior properly. this site has given me alot of help and I hope to get more from all you. Today my son's major issues are that he throws temper tantrums in public while spending time with my girlfriend and her children. this is not new for him. Her oldest daughter of two has serious issues with seizures, adhd, hearing issues and a small brain. She is raising this kids alone and is full emotinally and feels that she cannot take on more. I understand, but would like to give her some advice and hope that I can handle this so that we can work through all this as we are very compataable. Any assistance would be appreciated.
  17. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    Wow----you have your hands full, don't you? Chances are if you think your son has ODD, he does. ODD children don't benefit from any kind of discipline. For years I've been told that they benefit more from positive rewards for good behavior, making them want to keep up those kinds of behaviors to get the positive rewards. For us, and a child now eleven with ODD, it never worked. I've never found anything that has worked for his ODD and I truly think we've done it all. The best I can offer, is that at least there are some on this board who know EXACTLY what you're going through. Your friends sounds like she has her hands full, too
  18. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Understand that ADHD/ODD is very often misdiagnosed early onset bipolar, and you have BiPolar (BP) in the family. There's a huge genetic component. It's important to get it right because stimulants are NOT the answer for early onset bipolar. That's the last thing they need and it can make them worse. They need mood stabilizers and sometimes antipsychotics with them. And bipolar gets worse as the kids age if they aren't stabilized. ADHD is static. ODD behavior is a big part of BiPolar (BP) behavior. I'd go to a Child Psychiatrist (with the MD) rather than a therapist. Therapy will not help a child who may have a mood disorder--not until they are stable on medications. Looking at the family history, I'm really thinking ADHD/ODD could be wrong. It's a very common first diagnosis., especially from a therapist without a doctor's degree. I'd want another opinion before I went the medications route. The last thing you want is something that may make this child worse, or wasting time on incentive charts that won't help because the child can not really control is internal triggers and out-of-control behavior. Good luck.
  19. Charlene1

    Charlene1 New Member

    My son was recently put on Risperadol. He started out on 25 mg and now is up to 1 and 1/2 pills a day. To every mother who has to deal with a child with ODD I recommend this drug. My son is no longer violent and the rage in him is gone. He is a wonderful little boy again. I cannot believe the difference it made in him. His dad thought the same, I don't discipline enough but I am the one at home all day dealing with the bad behaviour. The medications didnt change his personality, there is still some bad behaviour but it is tolerable. He actually has manners now. lol He used to laugh at me when I tried to discipline but I have noticed now is that he doesnt need a whole lot of discipline anymore. Good luck to you. There is hope.
  20. jannie

    jannie trying to survive....

    I'm glad to hear things are going much better in your home !! I hope you continue to see progress !