Any ODD advice for 3 year old?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by aprim, Apr 8, 2013.

  1. aprim

    aprim New Member


    I’m the farther of 3 kids, My oldest son is 8, my daughter is 7 and the youngest boy is 3.

    My First son was diagnose with ADHD, other than some focus issues he’s a very good boy. Doctors recommended medication for him, me and my wife decided to focus on structure and a lot of guidance to help him through school. It has been working wonderfully. We study hard together and enforce rules and reward systems. Were very proud of his accomplishments.
    My Daughter has no issues. She’s sometimes gets bored in school. She is a straight 4 (A) student. Smarts as they come and very creative. Perfect little girl.

    Here’s the issue..
    My Son Devin is a very spirited child. He always wants to have things his way no matter what. He’s destructive to his older brother and sister’s things. And when he troughs a tantrum he is violent and destructive. He will toss anything he can reach and toss it with intent to break something. He tried to hit me or his mother and scream things we don’t allow out children to say like..SHHHUUUT UPPPPP..Over and over at me. Kicking and scratching can last up to 10 to 20 minutes. Then out of nowhere, he'll say "OK I’m done can I come down now, or play the game." or whatever we tried to redirect him to do before the tantrum.

    Where at the point we won’t bring him out anywhere. If we try to contain him in anyway. Car set, stroller, pick him up..he will lose it where ever we are.
    Last week at downtown Disney I had to stroll him back to the car while he tried to hit me kicking and screaming Shut up Dad at the top of his lungs. I was so embarrassed and couldn’t believe that this was my kid. I could feel the glares of other parents and herd “my kid would never bla bla bla” as I tried to quickly stroll by.

    He has been diagnoses with ODD. It really scares me because it effects my other 2 kids. They are often caught in the storm with Devin. So they always seem to be the ones that miss out. Or are stuck in the car with him screaming. Or getting there room destroyed because he likes to break their stuff. Or just missing out because we are tending to Devin because he’s such a handful sometimes.

    I will say, he’s a good boy otherwise. Very bright and caring. Love's to dance, speed stack cups, run, jump and play sports, but also like to sit and watch shows. I don’t think he’s ADHD, but this ODD really scares me. Redirection works sometimes but not often. We can’t give him medicine(cough or fever) at all or take him to an event. It’s really effecting our family.

    I’m totally lost here, there’s not much I can do. Any Advice?
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Skip "ODD" as a diagnosis. It doesn't help you any. There are no medications, therapies, interventions, accommodations - or parenting styles - that help ODD.

    However... what ODD does do is describe a behavior problem. And the behavior is a real problem... but it is not THE problem, if you get my drift.
    The REAL problem is... something you don't know he is dealing with. And it can be all sorts of things.

    Can you tell us more about his first three years of life?
  3. aprim

    aprim New Member

    Thanks for the replay.

    Pretty normal childhood. Loves being the center of attention. He watches WII just dance and learns the whole dance.
    Very lovable child. If he see's another member of the family trying to dance with him sometimes he flips out. He wants to dance alone.
    Hates sharing his Mom with his siblings. But when we talk to him he softens up. Really kind of normal until he melts down then all rules are off. I can't figure out what's missing other then were both working. Moms a teacher and works until 2 and I don't get home until late but we try and spend as much time with him as we can.

    Thanks again and let me know if you need any more info.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Agree skip t he ODD. Majority of us don't believe it's a real diagnois. All it means is "defiant child." Doesn't explain why the child is defiant and since kids don't just wake up each morning thinking, "How can I make everyone mad at me" there is an underlying cause for his sporadic violence and inability to obey. I doubt if regular parenting will help him any. Our differently wired kids do not normally respond to things like "time out." This is very unlikely to be due to anything you did wrong. It is likely inside of HIM...he is wired differently and needs to be treated differently.

    Don't guilt yourself. It's not your fault at all. Most parents both work these days so it can't be that. Your other kids are fine, right? Does he like to and know how to play with toys? Does he understand how to relate to his same age peers without hitting them? Does he ever repeat things, say, he hears on television? Good rote memory?

    My best advice I can give you is to have him evaluated. I prefer Neuropsychs. I don't know if there are any hidden mental illnesses in his family tree to know if he could have inherited anything. Is there any form of autism in his two family DNA trees? He could be suffering from a high functioning form of that. That certainly makes kids act out and get violent, especially when they are very young. Has he had any delays of any sorts? Any strange quirks? Make odd noises? Is his eye contact good both with his family and with strangers? Can he be around a lot of stimuli without getting upset? Loud noise? Does he eat a variety of food?

    For the most part, we are just parents and since we don't know what is wrong with your son we can't really tell you how to parent him. That's why most of us recommend a thorough evaluation. He is so young. It is better to nip it in the bud than have a kid acting out violently when he is ten years old and almost as tall as you are.

    Welcome to the board, but sorry you had to come here :)
  5. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    I would also suggest an evaluation by a multidisciplinary team (Occupational Therapist (OT), Speech therapist, PHD level psychologist, neuro-psychiatric). Try to find out what is available in your area.
    A good starting being his pediatrician. Tell (don't ask) that you want him evaluated as you are struggling as a family because of his behavior. Don't let anyone down play it.
    Being very frank with your level of worrying. It does not feel good to highlight all the bad stuff, but you'll have to go through that in order to get help for your son.
    When you schedule an Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluation, be sure that the therapist is knowledgeable in sensory processing disorder (could explain his tantrums as his system might be in overload). sensory processing disorder (SPD) was actually V's first diagnosis.
    Don't blame yourself, you have your 2 other kids to remind you that you are good parents. Now, you'll have to learn to used other parenting skills for your youngest. It is a process, but it can be done.
    The first thing you want to do as a parent is: stop assuming. Try to analyze your son's behavior with no preconception. the kind of mistake we often make as parent's of special kids is assume "he knows the rule" "he knows it's wrong" "he understood what I asked him". Special kids are also peaks and valleys, not linear. At times they might be able to do something (ie: sit quietly, answer a request. etc) and at other time they cannot do it because of their issues. I'll give you an example: Sweet Pea can use single words when things are quiet and she feels happy, When there are a lot going on around her and/or feels agitated she cannot speak anymore. Why? I'm not sure yet, but it is something I have to take into consideration (make her use sign language during those times instead of requiring verbal words she cannot formulate).
    Keep asking questions and keep posting. This forum will help you.
  6. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Ditto to all that's been said! Kttlc is fresh in the trenches and has has tons of success getting thru wait lists and therapists etc.

    Glad you found us, most of us have been in your shoes. I admit I smiled a little at the odd diagnosis in a three year old....and trust me-I know the difference and that you do not mean typical toddler stuff!......but I always thought terrible twos were not so big a deal. Three is when it's hard. ODD is their middle name. But for a difficult child's a whole 'nother level. (that happens again in puberty by the way, the combo is intense).....
  7. aprim

    aprim New Member

    Thanks everyone! I had to stay home with him yesterday because he was sick. Taking medication and going to the doctors is a very hard thing to convince him to do. To my surprise he was very well behaved and we managed to have a wonderful day. Redirection worked wonders but its not always successful. This weekend is a huge test because we have 2 events to go to. I'm tempted to stay home with him but I hate leaving him out. I think I'm gonna take my chances.
    Thanks again for all the advise and I'm glad I found this place to vent a little.
  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    is one event more important than the other?
    are both on the same day?
    is one more likely to cause him problems?

    we find it helps to prioritize...
  9. aprim

    aprim New Member

    Hello Everyone,

    It’s been about 5 months since I posted this on the forum. I remember how desperate I was seeking advice. Just wanted to update everyone, Devin is doing much better.
    Yes, he still has tantrums from time to time but they much tamer. No hitting or kicking. Major improvement.
    I have been enforcing a new type of discipline which I think has helped. No spanking at all. I’ve been punishing him during his tantrums and let them ride out in the corner of his room.
    Only when he is calm and behaved can he come back into the playroom or outside. Very stern, It was a real chore at first to keep him from not destroying his room but now he understands that it won’t be tolerated. Now when he acts up I remind him of being punished and he (most of the time) changes his tune. Helps clean up or sits patiently waiting for supper.
    He has become so much better when we are out. We have been to the carnival, out to dinner and even shopping. Of course there are a few other things that helps such as a lolly-pop or the iPad that he can watch some video on for the long wait at a restaurant but I have learned different techniques that my other 2 did not require at all. I try and be prepared for whatever we planned that day. I know his triggers.
    Over all I guess It’s just different for each child.
    I understand that this may not work for all but I learned if you make a punishment to follow through. I hate doing it, and my wife is a little less assertive but he knows there are consequences when he acts bad. Usually I’m the bad cop (for all my children) but it’s a small price to pay when it comes to his behavior.
    I love them so much and nothing is more rewarding then being a proud parent of your child’s behavior especially when you aren’t around. That’s when you know you’re doing it right. I don’t want them to fear me, I just want them to respect everyone around them and always be on the good side of judgment.
    How we raise them if how they will grow for the rest of their life’s.
    Anyway I just wanted to give a update and share what I have learned. It’s not over yet but I do see a major difference.

    Thanks everyone for the advice!