difficult child & School Troubles

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by needprayers, Sep 28, 2010.

  1. needprayers

    needprayers Guest

    If you have read my previous posts, difficult child has been in & out of trouble at school for the past 3 or 4 years. Being typical parents, we have denied that he had issues, and always thought he would grow out of it. He wasn't that bad at home, just at school.

    Yesterday we had our weekly visit with the Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), and talked about the episodes last week at school that resulted in the 3 day suspension from school. We told Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) that he may be sent to the district alternative school. She suggested that we request that he go, he has to learn to pay for his mistakes. I was hesitant about this, but now I completely agree.

    Turns out there were another episode at school, that quite frankly, usually means immediate expulsion from the school system. Our schools system is great, and we called and got a meeting for this morning, with the superintendent of education. He is going to request that he not be expelled, but he said the board makes the final decision. If not expelled, difficult child will be sent to the alternative school for a minimum of 6 weeks, during which he has to earn enough points for good behaviour before they will let him go back to normal school. Any issues at the alternative school subtracts from his points.

    The school district also has a new thing going on, that provides counseling and therapy sessions for troubled kids. Its affiliated with the mental health doctors of the area. This group has been active in the surrounding school districts, and they have been highly praised for their help. The superintendant recommended we enroll him in this.

    Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) also got some of his test results back from the psychologist, and he definitely is borderline ADHD. She didn't think it wasn extreme, but still there nonetheless. The psychologist wants her to back him off his zoloft from 50mg to 25mg, and try a low dose of adderall to help with with his impulsiveness.

    Please say a prayer for our difficult child, that this alternative center "wakes him up" and makes him realize that he is solely responsible for his actions, and that learns to make good choices, and the adderall helps him with his impulsive decisions.

    thanks for listening.
  2. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    It sounds like you have a decent district to work with. I hope it all works out.
  3. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member


    sounds like there is definitely some good support in your school district. I'm a tad confused - did "the incident" that normally results in expulsion trip the 3 day suspension, or was "the incident" something altogether different? Did it happen before the suspension, and if so, why are you just no hearing about it.

    I don't see an diagnosis listed for your son. I'm sorry that I'm not familiar with your story but was he diagnosis'd with depression? Have you ever suspected adhd before now? When did he start taking the zoloft? Did you see an increase in behavior issues after that medication?

    I will join you in hoping the alternative school is an option and that it produces some good results for difficult child.

  4. needprayers

    needprayers Guest

    He is still undergoing "diagnosis". We are now regularly seeing a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), and she in turn works with a group of Psychologists. They have completed a few tests, and results show ADHD (but not too bad). He is not hyper, just very impulsive on his actions.

    Its mostly ODD, and he feels he is entitled to everything. He was in, what wife and I called a "funk", where he would get upset or mad and stay that way for almost the whole day. The doctor's gave him the zoloft to get him out of his funk, which seems to have helped a lot.

    The bad thing about sending him off to the alternative school, is that if he screws up again, he will probably be expelled :(
  5. needprayers

    needprayers Guest

    Talked to docs today, and they want to try him on Vynanse instead of Adderal. Said they had better results with it.

    wife took him this morning and drove tot he alternative school, just to find out where it was at. wife said on the way home, difficult child was so nervous that he threw up in the car.. it breaks my heart, but the boy has got to learn that there are repercussions for his actions at school..
  6. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Very often, depression in children can manifest itself as anger, short fuses, aggression.....

    How long has he been on the zoloft?

    Vyvanse was/is a good medication for my son. One of the issues he had with the adderall was the late morning/early afternoon "punch" of the medication. The Vyvanse is a much smoother releasing medication and we definately saw good results with the switch. Good luck with that.

    Let me ask you, the ODD thing - is this something he has been diagnosis'd with? While ODD does have a specific diagnosis, most often it is present in kids that have other issues. Basically ODD is a laundry list of behaviors that don't fit in a specific box. Very often around here, we have seen children go through the testing/evaluation process, be properly diagnosis'd, begin treatment (medications, therapy, behavior modification, or any combo of these) and the ODD symtoms lessen or disappear. Entitlement is not so much an ODD thing as it is a difficult child thing! Most of our kids here carry the entitlement gene without ODD even being on the table. So, there is hope since you are still in that period.

    Another question, does your son show remorse for what he's done? Does he accept full blame or does he blame others? Was the situation that is leading to all this clearly and obviously something that he understood to be serious? I ask these questions to just kinda get an idea where he stands on the issue of what he has done. It's very heartbreaking to think of him being so scared and anxious of this school that he made himself sick. But it also could be, not is, manipulation. Any problems with that before?

    When do you find out about the status of his returning to his old school or going to the alternative school?

  7. needprayers

    needprayers Guest

    He has been on zoloft for about 5 weeks, with a noticeable improvement. He still gets mad, but he doesn't get so depressed when he's angry, and the anger is quick to subside.

    the Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) (working with psychologists) has diagnosed him with ODD.

    He often shows remorse, but sometimes I wonder if the remorse is just from being caught. Almost always when he gets in trouble, it the classical "it was someone else fault" syndrome.

    Does he understand the seriousness of what he's done? I honestly don't know. We have sat him down and went over everything he has done, and why those rules are there. We also explained that in life, there will be consequences for making bad decisions.

    I picked up the Vyvanse at lunch. I'm wondering if I should wait till Saturday to start him on it, or go ahead and start it in the morning.
  8. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    So he's been out so far this week and goes back tomorrow right? How many mgs was he prescribed? My gut would say, give it a try tomorrow. Call the school in the morning and let the powers to be know that your son has been placed on a new medication. Many folks believe in blind medications as far as school goes, but it is a controlled substance and I just feel more comfortable having someone in the building he will be in for 6 hours knowing about it.

    You never know, it could make a really positive change.

  9. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    Boy, I can relate to what you are saying. I am sorry to hear of the struggles. I hope you consider psychological counseling, a visit to a psychiatrist for medication monitoring. My son too was diagnosis'd with just ODD --- at 4 years old. Unfortunately many, many more issues have developed. Not all medications work for all kids. For us, zoloft, paxil, prozac did not work. Mood stabalizer does for his anger issue. Have you talked with school about having an IEP in place? It may be something worth discussing. Sounds like a good school district.