Going insane in Florida!!!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Sara0224, Mar 11, 2011.

  1. Sara0224

    Sara0224 New Member

    I am new to this site and am not really sure what to do with my 6 year old son. He is ADHD and has ODD. I am at my wits end. I had recently had him on Adderall. Thats where everything went down hill. Actually, since I started him on the medications it has been going down hill. His ODD didnt start rearing its ugly head til the medications were being taken. I dont know if I should just stop the medications all together or what. I can handle the ADHD. The ODD I CANNOT TAKE anymore. His Peds took him off the Adderall and I have started giving him Concerta. We have tried everything as far as punishments. Spankings, time outs, taking what matters most, emptying his room of toys and things to play with, leaving only bed and dresser. Iv gone from being mean to babying him. I hate having to bend to him, baby him, or even be mean to him. The last three mornings now I have had to physically dress the child. I cant seem to win. Everything to him is every body elses fault. He never does anything wrong. I have to bribe him to take his medications. Spring break is coming up toooooo soon for my kids to be home. I am really worried how it is all going to play out. My question is???? Do I keep him on the medications or take him off. I would rather have his oldself back than this evil child. I love my kids. Honestly, he was my favorite. We all have out favorites. But since taking these pills (any of them), he has turned into this evil child. I have had his fist thrown up at me, kicking me, doors slammed, room torn apart, stomping, throwing stuff, angry scary faces, and frankly I am tired or tip toeing and walking on egg shells with this child. WE ARE THE ADULTS. This child used to be sweet, yes ma'am no ma'am yes sir no sir, followed mostly all the directions, very few problems out of him. Yes he was not paying attention in school at all times and he was s o m e t i m e s getting into trouble. But he was NOT this angry mean child that I have now. Help oh please help me. What do I do? I do have 3 other children.
  2. rlsnights

    rlsnights New Member

    Sorry to hear of your troubles.

    I am going to suggest that you remove any real names from your signature. You'd be surprised what people can figure out from a name and a brief description and you probably don't want your children's teacher or your next door neighbor recognizing your family from your signature. Most of us use easy child for perfect child or difficult child for gift from god for our kids and then label them 1, 2, 3 etc. And you may also want to just list yourself as being in FL rather than the specific city for the same reason.

    Anyway, welcome.

    It certainly sounds like the medications he is/has been on are not helpful.

    My personal belief is that pediatrician's should not be prescribing mind altering substances to children. That is best done by a doctor who has the training to go with the prescription pad - a child psychiatrist (psychiatrist), neurologist, neuropsychiatrist.

    So my first suggestion would be to stop the medications (after consulting the pediatrician) and request a referral to a child psychiatrist for an assessment of your child since you are clearly describing a huge negative change in his behavior. If the pediatrician feels he/she can manage this you may need to be kind of firm with them that you are concerned about your child's reaction and want to see a child psychiatrist before doing any further medication trials. If you still get told no then let the doctor know you are going to contact your insurance company for a referral. I know it can feel awkward to do this but, really, you have ample evidence that your child is not having the typical reaction to the medications being prescribed. This is out of the peds area of expertise.

    It may be that your child doesn't need the dose being given, should be on a different medication, may have something else wrong like a thyroid condition. I don't know not being a doctor.

    Best wishes,

    Last edited: Mar 11, 2011
  3. jal

    jal Member

    Welcom Sarah0224,

    I too agree with not having the pediatrician prescribing medications. I have an 8 year old who started having problems around 3 years of age. I won't go into my whole story because it is very long but the actions you describe are just like my son before medications and during. We went the neuropsychologist route, psychiatrists, tdocs, 1 hospitalization, evaluations by major children's hospitals, blood tests, MRI's you name it. He went through 5 dayscares and I lost a job of 9 years because of his behavior. Any stimulant that was prescribed by his psychiatrist's sent him off the wall. It is possible that A) stims do not agree with him and B) that it is something more than ADHD. I would suggest that you seek out a neuropsychologist evaluation indepentently to see if something else is not the issue. If he his having trouble in school and it is interfering with his learning or his peers learning then it may be time to request an evaluation to see if accomodations can be put in place under an IEP. Meanwhile does your town offer Child and Family services? You may be able to get in home wrap around supports to offer you skills/tips/tricks to manage him better. We took advantage of this around the age of 6.

    My difficult child has been diagnosis'd with ADHD and mood-not otherwise specified. We have finally found that Intuniv (which is not a stimulant, but recommended for ADHD) has made a huge world of difference for focus and concentration.

    Good luck to you.
  4. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Welcome... I agree with removing the names, mine are nicknames for my kids and animals.

    Anyhoo - Jett (stepson) was put on a fairly high dose of Concerta and went from being mostly absentminded to FLAT OUT BRAT. Actually worse but I can't type that here.

    Some kids - ADHD or not - canNOT handle stimulants!

    Just from what I've read in your post, it sounds like the ODD showed up along with the ADHD medications. ODD is one of those catchall things - all kids are oppositional and/or defiant, occasionally. Usually it's caused by something under the surface. But you know what? There are other ways to handle this.

    One - I agree with rls - I don't this pediatricians should go anywhere NEAR mind-altering substances. They're not psychiatrists. Two - if it is, in fact, the stims - and it could be - I would think that a little bit of daydreaming/not paying attention would be preferable.

    ...Who diagnosis'd your son? Reason I ask is - we once had a teacher who told us Jett NEEDED to be MEDICATED for his ADHD. Um. Teacher = not doctor. We had a neuropsychologist evaluate Jett, and he told us - yeah, kid's got mild ADHD - but medicating him won't help. So we're working with him, to learn ways around it. And it's working...

    There are also different medications. Maybe it's ADHD, maybe not. We also found out that many children are diagnosis'd with ADHD, when it's something else... OR... It's comorbid with something else, making the ADHD worse...

    Hugs, and welcome.
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Second that pediatrician should not be either diagnosing or prescribing. They aren't very good at it. He may have an ADHD mmicker rather than ADHD so the medications are making him maicky. I would have a NeuroPsysch evaluation done to see what turns up.

    My son had a bad reaction to stimulants so I stopped giving them to him. It turned out he did not have ADHD as a primary diagnosis. anyway. He is on the autism spectrum and ASDers are often overly sensitive to medication. My motto: If the treatment isn't working, get a second opinion :)
  6. dreamwallaby

    dreamwallaby New Member

    I also have a 6 yr old boy dxd with ADHD and ODD. He is on Vyvanse prescribed by his pediatrician but we are also going to a Children's Hospital for testing and a therapy doctor to help with the behavioral issues. I know how frustrating the whole thing can be. My son can be a doll one minute and the next he is ripping apart his room, shoving me, cursing and doing anything he can to NOT do what he is suppose to do. I've done all the punishing, yelling, spanking. We've done all the reward charts, goal earning and over praising. We've ignored and threatened and none of this ever worked. The first step for me was reading "The Explosive Child" and realizing that my child would do good if he could do good. He doesn't like the person he can be at times and he is angry, scared and wishes things were easier for him so he could "be like everyone else". No one wants to be screamed at all the time, no one wants to be the center of all negative attention. He is literally missing the skills necessary to handle certain situations and demands placed on him. For example : If he couldn't run very well, I would not be screaming at him and taking his toys or demanding that he run miles and yet he can't cope with stress very well and I had been screaming at him, taking toys and demanding that he handle it. It's not a very productive way to handle his disability and only made things worse. I have laid in bed at night crying for hours, feeling like the worst mom in the world for how our relationship had ended up. I have a wonderful, bright, funny child who needs me to better understand what he is trying to say. I also am in the process of training myself that I don't always have to win and don't always have to be right, that letting him make choices, even wrong ones, is ok. That I don't have to argue everything with him. I am new to this site but it seems very supportive and I hope you are able to find a lot of answers to help you and your son. The website that goes with the book is www.livesinthebalance.org Also, if you click on "videos" above and scroll down the right side to ODD, you can watch a debate between the author and another dr, good information worth watching.
  7. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    I'd vote that if the ODD showed up after the medications, it's the medications and time for some changes. Mine did decently on Straterra for ADHD (at least during school hours, home was something else) until someone at her doctor's office had the bright idea to add Celexa to her mix and it spiraled down fast from there.
    There are a lot of things that can look like ADHD, from allergies to other disorders, and a well-done diagnosis for proper treatment should be done to be sure they're even treating the correct thing. Because when they're just tossing medications at the symptoms without being sure things can get nasty.
  8. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I, too, suggest getting an appointment with the best child Psychiatrist available. This is a critical time in his development and the future will really depend on the help he receives now.

    On a lighter note...I remember vividly the stress of having three small kids and having one of them tip the scales so much that we all got out of balance. Hang in there. Hugs DDD
  9. Sara0224

    Sara0224 New Member

    Thank you everyone for all of you comments and suggestions. Sorry it has taken me so long to write back. Having very little time for sitting has become non existent. As of right now, I have taken him in to see there psychologist and she was the one that told me My son was ADHD and ODD. She suggested I get him on the medications and have him see a therapist. I have done everything she has asked me to do so far. The medications, since putting him on them have made the ODD come out full force. I have just made a new appointment for him to be maybe taken off the stimulant and possibly be put on the non stimulant medications. Trying to be nice to this child is wearing my patience very thin. He used to not act like this. This is a different child. For him to kick, stomp, throw, hit stuff is all so new and I dont have a very forgiving thought in my head nor my husband. Asking him to do anything is a huge struggle. For the past two weeks I have had to physically dress him for school. I have to bite my tounge in order not to scream and dislike this child. So...... maybe in the next few days I will be able to see a difference in him after his appointment. If the non stimulants dont help..... then I am taking him totally off the medications and go back to dealing with his ADHD. Id rather deal with that than that nasty ODD. Any other suggestions would be great. I am getting a little worried. My hubby leaves this Friday for sea for about 2 months. A little worried I wont make it while he is gone. Or I may make it but my son might not........
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I would take him to a neuropsychologist for an evaluation. But if you want to skip that part, I'd take him to the guy who has the MD in Psychiatry...a Psychiatrist. They are better trained than psychologists and certainly than therapists. In many states psychologists aren't even allowed to diagnose, let alone give an opinion on medication. He didn't go to medical school. JMO :)
  11. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Sara, can I ask what part of Florida you're in? I grew up in FL.
    It doesn't look like anyone has suggested it yet, so pick up the book "The Explosive Child" by Ross Greene. Also check out (different authors on these) the Love and Logic series and "What Your Explosive Child is Trying to Tell You". Your library should have them. They can really help you understand him better and handle him better while you're waiting for more help from the professionals. No one system is best for everyone, so use what works for your situation and make your own mix.
    If things haven't changed in FL psychologists still do a lot of the diagnosis'ing. I had a great psychologist when I lived there that worked with a psychiatrist that did the Rx'ing (and even luckier, the psychiatrist had been my pediatrician when I was little before she went back to school again so I already trusted her).
  12. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    One thing that occurs to me is that one kind of has to take a "view" on how one wants one's child (lot of "one"s there, sorry - sounds like Prince Charles...) treated BEFORE seeing the health professional or at least before deciding which health professional to see. They all have their own views and approaches; there is no one, standard diagnosis that one is going to receive, I feel. In my fairly limited experience, this is how it has gone with my son who is certainly physically hyperactive but is he/isn't he ADHD - no-one can agree! First we had his paediatrician in Morocco, who had followed him since he was a tiny baby. She told me, without any doubt or ambiguity that "he is hyperactive" and recommended we see a psychologist. We saw one, who saw J for several sessions and always maintained that his hyperactivity was due to anxiety and to the first three months of his life which he spent in a group creche - many other people who know about adoption have also suggested that his hyperactivity is due to this (but why then are not all adopted children hyperactive?) She was quite adamant that she could not see any signs of ADHD - no concentration problems, good interpersonal connectios, etc. We also saw another psychologist, though that was mainly me talking to her; she felt the troubled situation between my ex-husband and me, and all the travelling I had done with J were implicated in his intense tantrums, etc. The head of the little French nursery he went to in Marrakesh was very sure he was not hyperactive (just like his present teacher here in France). Because in situations where he is required to sit down and contain himself, he will do so... If left to his own devices or given the freedom, he will run, jump, climb continually and give every appearance of hyperactivity... And then, here in France, a routine medical examination leads to the doctor recommending we see a psychologist. Which we did - or to be more precise, a child psychiatrist. After half an hour with her, she stated that ADHD looked "likely" and was talking to me about Ritalin, from age six or seven.... Hmmm. We have another appointment with this doctor and I'm quite sure that if I wanted to go with it, she would duly give the diagnosis based on the Connors questionnaires and that, if I described some of his occasional defiant behaviour, she would also diagnose ODD. And that, come the time, in a couple of years, he could be started on Ritalin.
    But... I am not happy with this. I am not saying she is wrong. She may turn out to be right. However, even though she is a medical doctor who then trained as a psychiatrist, I am not happy with a diagnosis based on half an hour and the answers to some questions. You really have to inform yourself. For example, a lot of things (it seems) look like ADHD/ODD but are apparently not... Meantime, my general practitioner here, who knows J quite well, does not "believe" in medicating for ADHD and has also told me he believes that it is not a neuro-biological condition but a set of behavioural symptoms that can be addressed through therapy and parent training... Hmmm. Another view. And I am sure it is like that in the States... you are going to get a whole variety of suggestions and approaches.
    What I am personally going to do is leave the ODD diagnosis to one side and keep an open mind on the ADHD thing. SOMETHING is certainly going on with my son, and he seems to have various learning difficulties even though he is clearly bright, but I would prefer to take the scientific approach of not forming a diagnosis until the evidence has been examined... So... I would like him to be tested by a neuro-psychologist and I would like to keep an open mind on the ADHD diagnosis for the moment, see how things unfold. Since he does not have problems in school, no-one is suggesting I have to give him medications (technically they cannot diagnose medications for ADHD below age 6 or 7 here but they do in very extreme cases of aggression).
    I don't know whether this helps... all I am saying is.... for your son's sake, get a variety of opinions and see which ones you trust most, what makes most sense to you. Sounds like these medications are not helping if they are creating ODD symptoms. Personally I would take him off them. It remains your decision, in tandem with the professionals... But I do feel one takes part in the diagnosis, helps inform it, and that is inevitable...