Can not get out of my head - comment from Residential Treatment Center (RTC)

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by DavidWH, Dec 8, 2007.

  1. DavidWH

    DavidWH New Member

    This is bugging me about Justin's Residential Treatment Center (RTC) - Told to him in front of me today during family visit, about his Psychiatrist appointment Thursday... (simply medications management)

    He told me he does not want to increase his dose of medications... (on a low .5mg) - the family counselor said,

    well it is up to you you do not have to increase it if you do not want to... you have the opportunity to show us you do not need it...

    This is not the first I heard this.. but it really bothers me... is this normal or strange, to give the kid the choice of medications he can or can not take?

    I have been told by staff he needs an increase, (this is first dosing of new medication and they all say it wears off too fast, something I said before they put him on it, they said to me, well we must try low first.. then see ourself..)
  2. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    In my experience, normal. My son has had the "right" to refuse treatment and medications since age 12 (age of consent in IL for psychiatric treatment) and no placement he's ever been in, even before he was 12, would force him to take medications. There were consequences if he didn't, but he's pretty much always been able to refuse his maintenance medications. Only exception was when he was violent and had to be sedated.

    in my humble opinion, at 14 I think it's not necessarily a bad thing to start getting him on board with treatment plan and involved/invested. If he wants to try to maintain himself without a higher dose and is able to actually do it, I think that's fantastic.

    Edited to add: I also think, with my kid at least, for a very long time he really didn't make the connection between moods/behaviors and his medications. It took some practice and probably some periods of time when his medications weren't necessarily optimal for him to start making that connection.
  3. mrscatinthehat

    mrscatinthehat Seussical

    I have two in Residential Treatment Center (RTC) and they are "allowed" to refuse medications from staff. It is in their rights. It can be and is frustrating when this happens. The thing is if your son is able to work through this then he is a step ahead. If it is a control issue then you will have to figure out a way around this.

    When difficult child 2 doesn't comply with the basics (shower, school, medications) he is not allowed to call us. There were a lot of reasons behind this but it was a necessary thing. You have to either talk to him about why it is necessary (or staff should or both) and then let it go. One of the things you can't actually control. You can encourage, but in the end yes it is his decision.

  4. goldenguru

    goldenguru Active Member

    When my daughter was in her Residential Treatment Center (RTC), she wanted to try a medication wash. She really wanted to be off all psychotropic medication - because they carried unpleasant side effects. She talked to us, to staff, to her psychiatrist. We allowed her the opportunity to try and be medication free. Within a month she was ready to go back on them.

    I'm really glad we allowed her the choice. I'm glad we supported her choice. By allowing her to do so, she learned that she needed to be on some medications. It was a much better lesson than us telling her she needed to be on medications.

    by the way: she's 19 now and has been medication free for over one and a half years. Shes doing great. medications aren't' always forever. Many kids get through those tough teen years and find they can navigate life without medications.
  5. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    There's not much you can force a difficult 14 1/2 year old to do. Best to bring them on board in the decision making process as opposed to telling them how it's going to be and get the same ol' knee jerk reaction to authority.

    Our goal should always be working towards helping them learn to manage their own issues.
  6. DavidWH

    DavidWH New Member

    Yes, we did the same for Justin, he was on another medication for years prior to this new medication he has been on only a Month now, we tried it with out any medications gave him the chance to see if he could do it.. it did not happen and he accepted that he needs some help by medications...

    however this is not a new medication or even if you want to take a new medication.. I am saying this is an increase in dose because the medication he is taking is not lasting... so he is taking a medication now accepting of a medication now that is not doing the whole job, and they want to give him the chance to not increase his dose?

    seems to be a difference to me... maybe not.. just seems strange
  7. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    David, it really is pretty common for kids to have the choice to refuse medications after age 12. Not sure what the law is in your state, but most give kids the right to refuse medication sometime between ages 12-14. So, it may be that the camp has to tell him this legally.

    Many RTCs will give the kids the option even if there isn't a law. It really help a child see that the medications are needed, especially if they can't function in a really structured setting.

    So, for now, let him try it his way.

    Other than that, how did the visit go? What did you end up bringing for food? Any battles about it being just the two of you? (Start a new thread on the visit -- keeps this from getting too long and it really is a different issue.)
  8. DavidWH

    DavidWH New Member

    OK, I will take this and go with it..

    he said he does not want the increase.. because he thinks the new medication is making him fat!!!!!!!!!!

    he is like me.. will never be fat... tall and trim!! grrrrrrrrr
  9. ck1

    ck1 New Member

    My son has always been very aware of how the medications make him feel and what helps and what doesn't. I believe that because he is very much a part of the decision-making process he is medication compliant.

    I think what your son is being told is a good thing. They're teaching him that he can and should control his behavior. If he doesn't want to take additional medications, or higher doses, then control the symptoms. Sometimes the symptoms can't be controlled, it's truly not possible, that's when medications are needed. That's my opinion, anyway!
  10. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    And the new medication is Adderall? No way is weight gain a side effect. If anything, Adderall kills appetite and causes weight loss. My guess is something else is going on here.
  11. DavidWH

    DavidWH New Member

    Oh Jeese... no I am sorry I have it wrong.. it is .5 of Risperdal

    NOT Adderall.. ug I will fix that.. thanks for bringing that up
  12. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat


    I've been following your plight since you joined the board, and while I usually jump right in with the welcome wagon, I've been a bit wrapped up in my own turmoil.

    Just wanted to lend my support.
  13. Sara PA

    Sara PA New Member

    Yes, the Risperdal will likely make him fat. And maybe grow manboobs. It seems to shut off the part of the brain that registers fullness. And as a major tranquilizer, it probably slows metabolism.

    The laws of this country allow anyone to refuse any medication unless there is a court order stating otherwise. Further, it would be medically unethical to force medication on someone who does not want to take it, even if it's a minor and the parents want the child to take it.
  14. goldenguru

    goldenguru Active Member

    Sara PA is correct about risperdal. Greatly increases appetite. And the 'manboobs' (called hyperprolactinemia) can be problematic for men.

    He has some basis for his concerns.
  15. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    My lean 17 year old hasn't gained an ounce...anywhere on his body
    and has been taking 10mgs every morning and 5 mgs every evening.
    Although I imagine it is possible that unwanted weight gain can
    result for a tall and thin young man, I think it is more likely to happen to someone with a predisposition to heaviness. DDD
  16. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    It's not uncommon. I wish that they would be more clear to the kids that

    "you have the opportunity to show us you do not need it..."

    means that if you don't take it and you do need it you get to have the opportunity to stay in an Residential Treatment Center (RTC) instead of going home and living a relatively normal teenage life.

    It shouldn't be left unsaid.