Any Words of Encouragement for a Newbie?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Want2Learn, Feb 2, 2008.

  1. Want2Learn

    Want2Learn Sifting Through It All

    Hello everyone and I just wanted to say that it has been a blessing finding this page. I am a mother of 4 ages, 13, 10, 3, and 1...the 13 y/o has ADHD and is currently doing well on medication, the 3 y/o was a micropreemie and now has CP and the 1 y/o although very active, seems to be doing well so far, then again...he seems a little special too. However, I'm SERIOUSLY needing help for my 10 y/o..she has been having serious behavior problems now for about 3 years and this year they have started to get really severe. AT first I started trying to get her into activities, but she would not put any effort long term into them or even into getting up and getting ready to go anywhere. Everything is a struggle with her. She has gotten suspended 2x this year already and several detentions and in-school suspensions. I first got a therapist to come to the house periodically to help her, then I recently visited a psychiatrist with her and he stated after listening to everything that she could possibly have ADHD and/or anxiety disorder. He sent me home with a Connor's Rating scale, and a survey for my daughter and her teacher to fill out. I filled out the Connor's scale and attempted to grade it myself...her score equaled "Oppositional" which caused me to start researching oppositional behavior in children on search engines and that's when I first learned of the term Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). Upon reading the symptoms of ODD it was like a light instantly came on! This describes my daughter almost exactly! And then I found this forum. So we haven't been back to the doctor yet, but I'm thinking that's what he will say. If not, I'm definitely going to ask him about it, but these are my major concerns and problems:

    1.) The school is constantly suspending my difficult child I'm getting used to the terminology here, bear with me.) and putting her in detention in which I have to drag my 1 y/o out and my 3 y/o with CP out to pick her up because they don't provide transportation for after school suspension. How do I get the school to stop giving her suspensions?

    2.) I'm also afraid that they will eventually expel her and then I won't know what to do.

    3.) I'm already struggling to pay the medical bills for my 3 y/o and taking her to outside therapy, so it's hard to even keep up with all the f/o appointments to the Dr's for my 13 y/o and 10 y/o. My 3 y/o receives some assistance from the state for some of her medical bills because of her disability although we have private insurance. Will it be hard to get assistance for their mental "disabilities".

    I'm just more so thankful to find this board somewhat early in my journey with this and grateful to find out about ODD and that there's is actually a name that goes to this. I'm still reading as much as possible here. Sorry for the long post.

    Any insights, advice or anything would be greatly appreciated.
    W2L aka Jen
  2. Coookie

    Coookie Active Member


    Welcome. :) Others will be along soon also to welcome you and give you ideas. I have no experience with medications but I do have it with ODD and what I would suggest is you get a copy of Ross Greene's book "The Explosive Child." It did not solve all the problems with my difficult child but it helped me approach dealing with him in a different way. :)

    You have found a safe, caring, supportive place here. These people have saved my sanity more than once and became my second family. You are not alone. We are all dealing with difficult difficult children (gifts from God). Different diagnosis but difficult just the same.

    Keep posting, reading and researching.

    Hugs to you. :)
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    You need to get her on an IEP at school and get a Behavior Intervention Plan in place (through the IEP). The first step to the IEP is having an evaluation. If doctor gives her the ADHD or some other diagnosis (I think it would take more than ODD), you would have good reason to ask the school to evaluate her- actually I think you have good reason anyway, unless she's making really good grades or her aptitude tests and grades are similar, or all her teachers seem to think she's just fine in all her classes. You could have neuropsychological testing done privately, but it is expensive and typically, insurance companies only pay a percentage. This testing/evaluation will reveal specific things she might be having difficulty with- as it relataes to abilities to process and learn. It might be in the area of verbal or memory, etc.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    HI and welcome.
    I have a few questions.
    1/ What kind of things get her into trouble?
    2/ Has she ever had a neuropsychologist evaluation (this is a three to twelve hour thorough evaluation that goes beyond what other professionals do).
    3/ Are there are any psychiatric or neurological problems in the family tree? Substance abuse (which is a red flag for a mood disorder).
    4/ Did she ever have any delays? Can she socialize? Make eye contact?

    ODD rarely stands alone. It is more a description of defiant behavior that almost all the kids here have, but it's root cause is usually a bigger disorders, causing the kids to be very oppositional.
    If she hasn't had a neuropsychologist exam that's where I'd start. I don't personally believe a therapist is going to have the knowledge to look into all possibilities.
    Others will come along. Sometimes weekends are slow.
  5. Want2Learn

    Want2Learn Sifting Through It All

    Thanks Cookie...I have put a request in to get the "The Explosive Child" from the library as well as "The Defiant Child". I'm looking forward to reading them.

    klmno..thanks for your reply, she has been making good grades until this year even with the behavior problems, but this school year is so much worse. I think it's in part to her having a teacher that she really dislikes. Her teacher is a very traditional, no-nonsense teacher that doesn't give the kids any breaks. She has a reputation of being "mean". At the beginning of the year my daughter was hoping she wouldn't get this teacher and since she did IN FACT get this teacher, it's been all down hill. She has pretty much just shut down in class, so now in addition to the behavior problems, her grades are dropping fast.
  6. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I'm not sure if "behavior interefing with ability fer her and/or others to learn" is reason enough to qualify for the IEP. It does get the BIP if you're already on an IEP. Try posting this on the Special Education board- Martie or Sheila can help with this. The IEP and BIP will require other strategies besides suspension all the time.

    In the meantime, have you tried asking for her to be changed to a different teacher's class?
  7. Want2Learn

    Want2Learn Sifting Through It All

    Thanks Midwest Mom...her last suspension was because the teacher made her mad and she just got up and walked out of the classroom. Her first suspension this year was for repeated office referrals and going off on the teacher after the teacher wrote her up. Her detentions are given because she refuses to do her work in class. My thing is this...if they can't get her to do her work in class, how are they going to get her to do it in detention? At least when she's at home, I can get her to do her work a little better than they can at school. Her detentions are punishing me!

    2. She's never had a neuropsychologist evaluation. should I ask her doctor about it at the next appointment. I don't know if insurance will pay for it either. I will research this.

    3. There is definitely a family history of some disorders..I have dealt with some depression myself and get terrible PMS moodiness myself. Her biological father is not in her life, but I believe he's dealing with some substance abuse issues as well. There's also a history of alcolism in our family which is why I pretty much don't drink at all.

    4. She has never had any delays, she did everything relatively quickly. She definitely makes eye contact. If anything she started being "grown" at any early age. Which I read that ODD kids make themselves equivalent with adults. One thing I noticed when she was little was that instead of playing with other little kids, she would hang around the older women in the family. She socializes ok, but tends to make her friends mad sometimes and sometimes loses friends.

    Thanks for the's "therapy" just typing all this stuff out. :D
  8. Want2Learn

    Want2Learn Sifting Through It All

    I did but the principal stated that she did not have any room in another teacher's classroom and we would have to switch to another school, but they wouldn't provide transportation and it would be extremely hard for me to take her everyday.