First post

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by on-the-verge, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. on-the-verge

    on-the-verge New Member

    Hello all...came across this group today just as my life is starting to fall apart...actually, it's been falling apart for the last 14 years but has finally hit that critical spot where you just know that decisions made will affect your life forever. by the way, what does difficult child mean? There needs to be a reference site that explains these things for newbies...or perhaps there is one and I haven't located it yet :)

    Now for a very brief history: (I'll add my signature soon)
    I am mom (52 on Tuesday),fibromyalgia
    married for 29 years to husband (52) Chrohn's
    who has been handling most of our child's exploits because I seem to be the trigger for her explosions,
    daughter 28 married with 3 babies (5,3,5 months)
    ds 25 married, no kids, add
    ds 23 married, no kids, adhd
    daughter 16, adopted from Haiti, probable o.d.d., driving us over the edge, refuses testing, came to us at age 2 1/2 although assumed to be older
    daughter 14, adopted from Haiti, not biological sister of 16 yr old, diagnosed last year as "mildly retarded" (their term, not mine!), multiple learning challenges, was a failure to thrive infant, a surviving twin who came to us at 9 months, weighing 9 pounds

    Gosh...what a family! We have a strong faith and marriage, I am a early childhood educator with my own montessori preschool/kindergarten and a published author. husband is a high school math and physics teacher. Our 16 year old is in some of his classes....yes, I nominate him for sainthood!

    So my question to you is twofold....which group should I be part of? The teen one appears to be for substance abuse, which I am fairly sure that is not an issue right now. I am looking for support for myself with dealing with 16 year old with whom we had our most major blow-up this week resultling in husband seeing inschool counsellor,principal and resource head. All stated that O.D.D. and Attachment Disorder were strongly suspected. We knew about A.D. for years although never had official diagnosis as daughter refuses to see anyone...we tried once when she was 10, she sat there for the entire hour and said nothing and then the therapist yelled at us for bringing her there against her will. We never returned.

    My second question is how do you deal with a teen who refuses to speak to any professional or get tested? Secretly, I keep thinking that sooner or later she'll be involved with the court system (Canada) and they will order an evaluation...but I can't wait for that!

    I am so relieved to find this group...this past week has been a nightmare and I hope I can learn from your wisdom and experiences.
    Thanks to everyone in advance :)
  2. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    First of all, welcome! Sorry you had to find us but glad you did. This is a wealth of support, information and advice and truly is a soft place to land.

    To answer your question about the terminology, difficult child means "gift from God" aka, the child who brought you here. There is a section on the FAQ page that discusses all of the abbreviations and language. There is also (I believe) a section there that gives you the run down on the site rules. Pretty basic and common sense but it never hurts to know the rules. You also may want to make a signature similar to the one at the bottom of my post. The info on that should also be on the FAQ section.

    As for which group to be in....really the General is probably your best bet. The General page is for all things difficult child related. The others are also but tend to be a bit more specialized as you saw with the Teen and Substance Abuse. The only one truly not difficult child related (although it can be...just not the "typical" stuff) is the Watercooler. That is where we talk about...well, everything else. Jokes, what is going on in our lives outside of the difficult child's, jobs, health....really anything.

    Now, the "fun" question. There really isn't any way to "make" someone get evaluated or participate in therapy if they don't want to, even someone who is still a minor. I'm not familiar with the system in Canada although we do have Canadian members so they may be able to help you better on that. Here, if we were in that situation, about the only choice we would have would be some sort of emergency hold in a hospital but that requires falling into some particular guidelines to qualify.

    You and your family sound as if you really have your hands full. I'm not sure I've been all that helpful but you will find a treasure trove of support and information here. Don't be shy...come on in and prop your feet up. You'll like it here!
  3. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi Ontheverge. Welcome.
    Just from what you've written, Attachment disorder sounds like a good diagnosis, considering her past. Of the few people I know who have been successful with-that, they basically withstood every awful thing their kids did, while constantly reminding them how much they love them. At some point, the "Aha!" lightbulb went off and there was a catharsis. I learned a lot about it when I subscribed to Roots and Wings Magazine. I don't know if it's still being published.

    You need to grow rhino skin. Learn detachment. It takes a lot of practice.

    I have no idea how to get a kid to talk, but what your psychiatric said was rude and unprofessional. I'd find another one who is willing to sit there and draw pictures or listen to music or whatever it takes until the kid opens up. We've had sessions where our son just sits there. Sometimes he'll talk when the therapist is nice, and sometimes the therapist has to read him the riot act. But the therapist has to get to know the child first b4 doing that or it will backfire.

    Our sessions work best when we have an agenda. We often bring up 1 or 2 things that have happened recently, tell the therapist about it in front of our difficult child, and then the therapist asks difficult child to give his side of the story. It's almost like baiting, and who could resist that? :)

    Do you think there was any drug abuse by the bmom that could be causing biological or neurological problems? Have you had that kids assessed by anyone other than a pediatrician or psychologist?

    In reg to you being the trigger, join the club. It is very common for the moms to be the trigger because we are there with-the kids the most.
    Have you ever read The Explosive Child by Ross Greene? If not, I highly recommend it. I have been the trigger far less often since reading it. I also had my husband spend more time with-our difficult child so eventually my husband became a trigger, as well. It's whomever the child spends the most time with.
  4. Jena

    Jena New Member


    I wanted to jump in and welcome you as well!!! This is a great place with alot of wonderful support, information and yes we even laugh at times :)

    In regards to dealing with a teenager with whom is refusing counseling or therapy. That's a rough one. I know with my almost 16 year old I had to bring her against her will last year. She wound up not talking at all, just sat there. So, I am not anyone to advise on that one!!
  5. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    That whole take her to therapy anyway even if she just sits there......that's what I meant. :slap: I just kind of forgot to type that part. My point was that you can take her but can't force her to participate. Siiiiiiiiiiiiigh. Sorry about that....I do payables at work and am just finishing up the month. My brain is pretty crispy right now.
  6. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    I think that most 16 year olds think they know it all already, so getting to participate in therapy means taking the focus off of their behavior. Can you approach from a "we need to know how to better parent you because we are not doing a good job" point of view. If she thinks its because of her, she will balk. If she sees it as a way to make her life easier, she may comply.

    In my home, when my difficult child (and my easy child, for that matter) were in the midst of teenage angst (and double or triple that with a difficult child) than I tied therapy/counseling to extras. If you go, do what you are supposed to, then life goes on. If not, it stops. No extras, no shopping (and what teenage girl will go without), no cell, no computer, no nights out. It was, at the time, my version of do to get. You do get .....
  7. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Just wanted to chime in and add a welcome. Pull up a chair and hang out awhile.
  8. susiequte

    susiequte New Member signature is outdated, but I wanted to welcome you. I lived in Haiti for 18 months about 20 years ago (I was on a church mission), I went back about 3.5 years ago. God bless you for adopting a child from Haiti!!!!You will get great advice here........It has helped me so much in dealing with my stepsons.
  9. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    Adding another welcome!
  10. Rabbit

    Rabbit Member

    welcome! sending hugs! Rabbit
  11. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Hello On-The-Verge, and welcome.

    Very glad you found us, but so sorry that you had to.
    I agree with the others that Attachment Disorder is likely an issue for your daughter. Also, there may be some psychiatric or neurological disorders hiding in the mix, that you haven't been able to pinpoint because your difficult child refuses to participate in assessments.

    I'm not sure where you're located in Canada. If you're in the Southern Ontario region, I might be able to pass on some local resources. We have a few other Canadian members scattered around the country who might be able to fill you in on resources from other locales.

    You have found a soft place to land. Come by often. We're here to help!
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Great idea, Everywoman. We've done a bit of that, and kids LOVE to tell their parents what to do. Get the therapist to ask about the things that you do that bug your difficult child the most and you won't get her to shut up! :)
  13. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Just wanted to add in my welcome-glad you found us.
  14. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member


    I want to add my welcome too.

    I can relate to what you said. I was always the trigger for my difficult children too, especially difficult child 1. difficult child 1 used to blame me for everything that went wrong in his life. He used to tell me on a daily basis how much he hated me. I used to think there was something wrong with the way I dealt with him. I used to wonder why my H didn't get the same nasty treatment.

    After difficult child 1 began therapy and medication and H took a stronger role in parenting him, things changed. Now H is a target/trigger too. As others have already said, the parent who does the most parenting is usually the target of his/her difficult child's rages, anger, etc...

    At the moment, I don't really have anything to add to what the others have already said.

    This is a great place to come to for support, information, and advice. Take what you can use, ignore the rest. And, know you are not alone... WFEN
  15. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Adding my welcome!
  16. lizzie09

    lizzie09 lizzie

    Welcome! I have had such kind responses from this board regard to my son with Prader Willi Synd
    Despite the fact that he loves me probably more than anyone else I am always a trigger and always the one he blames when things go dont worry we have all seen that side best wishes to you and enjoy the board
  17. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Welcome! Glad you found us. It does seem that the person the child is closest to is the one they are willing to act out with most. We have come to the conclusion that it is because they KNOW we will never reject them.
  18. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Welcome to our little corner of hell and help. Like you, I have a child with attachment issues. Fortunately, not severe thanks to some luck on my part -- I did the right things when I first got her without knowing they were right. If you haven't read them, Adopting the Hurt Child series by Keck are excellent resources.

    For my daughter, therapy was crucial. When she went into refusal, I went into refusal. That is, you don't participate, I take you no where, get you nothing. You can go to school and that's it. I did tell her she was free to spend the entire 50 minutes venting about what a mean mom I was. I really didn't care as long as she talked to the therapist but talk to him she would. Sooner or later some of her issues would come out.

    Honestly, I hate, hate, hate Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). I would rather have a child be BiPolar (BP), schizophrenic, anything but Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) -- at least there are medications for many of the other illnesses. I truly believe it is an ugly diagnosis that doesn't leave a lot of hope unless a child commits to therapy and behavior modification. And the child has to want to change, I believe.

    I wish you the absolute best in getting her to want to help herself. HUGS