New Member
Hi Everybody! I just found you today and am happy to have found you. My difficult child is 14 and has High-Functioning Autism (HFA) (high-functioning autism). I can deal pretty well with all of it but since he hit age 12 he has decided the way to deal with the world is by brute force. With DEX not around anymore I have had to be pretty creative in handling his aggression. But I am wearing down and have decided to add something to his medications which are currently 8mg risperdal + 54mg concerta daily. His psychiatric is recommending Depakote, I am seeing him this Thursday to discuss ... but I would love to hear from the warrior moms and dads in the trenches too. Thank you for taking the time to post, and I look forward to getting to know you all ... I do have lots of experience after 14 years and hopefully can contribute too once I am thru this current crisis! lol!!

sameold sameold

New Member
Hi and Welcome

I am glad you found us.

My son can also be aggressive, he is also on risperdal, 2mg per day, along with lamictal and cymbalta. He has never been on depakote. Luckily the risperdal keeps my sons aggression in check. Good luck to you. Hopefully others with some experience with depakote will chime in and give you some more answers. Take care.




My 20 yo son is diagnosis with Aspergers. He took Depakote for several years with great results - less irritability, less beligerence. He had to go off it, though, because it elevated his bld ammonia levels.

It was a great medication for him. Good luck!
My friend's Aspie son is also taking Risperdal, not sure the dosage, he is 16. They had tried everything and nothing worked like the Risperdal does.

Hugs of welcome,


Well-Known Member
Since 14 (or maybe 13...the years have blurred in my old age!)
we have had no more aggression from difficult child who is now 16. He takes
two 36 mg Concerta and two Risperdal before he gets out of bed
in the morning. He also takes one Risperdal and two Depakote in
the evening. We have had zero negative side effects.

We also have an Rx for Ativan for anxiety which is used on an
as needed basis and with the pill cut in half. This is not often
used but the Ativan and a low dose Ritalin are at the house and
available for difficult child if he feels "too TOO" out of the groove to feel
confident attending evening meetings or whatever. I'd guess that
maybe twice a month one of the supplements is used.

Welcome aboard. Sure hope things get squared away soon as I
remember very well what it is like to be the single Mom of a teen. DDD


Well-Known Member
Depakote is an anti-seizure medication which is also used as a mood stabilizer. Maybe psychiatrist thinks he has a mood disorder with the autism. Could help, if so. Also, in some kids, my son included, stims can cause aggression. ADHD-like symptoms are par for the course in all forms of autism, but stims don't always do the trick.


New Member
Thank you, thank you for your comments! I really needed to hear what you had to say. Just Risperdal and Concerta have worked for so long ... it's hard to make the leap into a third medication. But I know it has to be done and you've given me the knowledge that it can work. I'll let you know how it goes ... ! My very best to you all!

Liz in MD


New Member
Just handed it to him ... along with the usual ... pointed at it and said, look there's a new one. Any questions? He said no.
I made the sign of the cross when he took it. He said what was that for? and laughed because I did. Dear Lord ... I know I'm a sinner but please let this help him like the Risperdal did so many years ago!


New Member
Hello I have a 14 year old step son who has beeen finally diagnosed. With asbugers.
After months of reseach I asked his so called therapist about testing him for the which she implied that she had a thought about it and didn't bring it up with us or the psyciatrist. After that we took him out of theropy because they did nothing...
In the mean time he has become verbaly aggressive with me and my parents and last week he slamed down my 2yr old son to the floor and pushed my 5yr old nephew down the stairs and proceeded to punch him.after that we took him to the hospital for crisis intervention where they agreed to have him admitted to a psyciatric hospital . They diagnosed him with asburgers (surprize surprize) and placed him on depakote.. we are trying to get him placed in a residental faculity. But the hospital want to release him on Monday before he can be placed. We visited him today and I feel he not ready. I am scared and have to think about the younger children in the house. Any sugestions please help me


Well it looks to me like two new newbies have posted on this same thread.(lizinmd and jjo34jo) I am not sure if you both know that it. I myself have been on and off for a couple of years and am a little confused with the "new" technology. I just got my 16 year old difficult child back from a residential facility and they just increased his depakote which( he has only been on since he got home in April) but I am hoping will help. It is hard with his bipolar because one day it works and the next it doesn't or maybe it doesn't have anything to do with the medications at all. (lizinmd) I am looking forward to hearing if the depakote worked as I am still up in the air about its results. (jjp34jo) I am glad that the system worked for you to call for assistance for transport and diagnosis for your difficult child because it did not work for us and my difficult child had the police file charges against him which caused a whole new set of problems.
GOOD Luck to you both and if I am wrong that this is only one person I apoligize -like I said I am still trying to figure it out myself.


Roll With It
Hi! Welcome to both of you. I have a 17yo difficult child named Wiz. He has Asperger's and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). He is also suicidal anytime he is taken off his medications or they are weaned down. They work, so we don't mess with them. He was very very violent and is now living with my parents, about 15 min away from us. (husband is his biofather, but he needed to be the only child in the house. wish they had told us before I was preg with the 3rd kid. Sigh.)

Wiz is a real success. It was a long hard road. He was on depakote, risperdal and concerta for about 3 or 4 years. It worked very well. Eventually the risperdal stopped working as well and we had a tough time finding this new medication combo.

It sounds as if your son needs the added effects of depakote. It is an antiseizure medication, so it is very important that he take the dose and NOT stop it with-o the doctor's OK. If you stop it cold turkey he can have seizures, even if he never had a seizure before. They don't always warn you of this before you start. Just make sure you never run out.

The violent behavior is a problem. You need to make sure that the kids all tell you if he is violent. Wiz managed to hide his violence to his sister by telling her he would kill our youngest son. I learned this by walking into her room and finding him choking her. It was the middle of the night and I couldn't figure out why the cat was pestering me and tehn went into her room.

You may need to consider alarms to place on his door at night if he is a night wanderer. Do what you need to so that everyone is safe.

We are here for both of you newbies!! You won't find a more accepting, understanding and supportive website or in real life community, in my opinion. There just aren't any.

I am glad you both found us, and sorry you both need us.

Sending big snuggly welcoming hugs!


Active Member
Have you read "What Your Explosive Child is Trying to Tell You?". It has really helped (along with medications) to stabilize my boys (one with- aspergers and one with- autism and bipolar)

Welcome to the boards,