Here comes the stress...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by klmno, Sep 1, 2008.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Is anyone else feeling this???

    I have gotten difficult child a BIG desk planner for us to use and I have a copy of the current IEP to redmark. He has school supplies organized and packed. :D

    But, I've already received a message from his new school case manager (yesterday she called- school starts Tues.). Anyway, don't get me wrong, I'm glad that she's being pro-active. I am just cringing as I feel the weight coming back on our shoulders. IEP meetings, trying to educate a bunch of new people that a mood disorder isn't the same thing as ODD, what works with difficult child and what doesn't, and the biggest pressure- the ^%#(&^$% code of conduct that lists everything from "talk with administrator" to "in or out of school suspension" to "recommendation for expulsion" to "arrest" as a possible consequence for almost everything. Given that they chose to have difficult child arrested for tearing up his ibook last year, i am so scared that someone is going to lose patience for something with him this year (it's usually someone who later states that they don't believe he has any problem- he's just being defiant) and they will turn him over to police again. That would be all it would take at this point since the judge has him on a suspended sentence to commitment to state dept. of corrections. The judge has everything listed in his court order- even "no tardies to school". Do you have any idea how well ultimatums work with my difficult child? Lets just say they don't. Then, instead of the "bar" being in a typical place, it appears to me that it has been raised to the point of expecting perfection from him.

    The school knows this and most are actually being reasonable, but there is always that one person that can't resist the urge to prove something because they think more punishment will cure him and they always end up saying "no, the judge will just slap him on the hand". ARGGHHH!!

    Yes, the stress is creeping back...:sad-very:
  2. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am so sorry. I understand the stress, but think you must be feeling so much more. I think that the judge overseeing your case should have to serve some time - the rulings made are so very outrageous (at least to me).

    I hope and pray that you and difficult child have a good year.

    Take time today to do something nice for yourself - you deserve it!
  3. BestICan

    BestICan This community rocks.

    Yes, we're definitely feeling that back-to-school stress. You're SO not alone. It really stinks that you've got these very tough rules and regulations to comply with - I agree that "no tardies" isn't reasonable, even for PCs.

    I fully understand that feeling of "there's that one person" who can ruin everything by being vindictive or choosing to stay uneducated. I don't have good advice for you, since your difficult child is older and you've been through so much more than me. Just do your best to put on a friendly, cooperative, "I'm on your side" kind of attitude with these people , even though you may be seething inside. My difficult child has a very personable and likable therapist who I bring with me to meetings sometimes, so he can be the "goodwill ambassador" when I can't keep up the charade by myself.

    Good luck!
  4. ML

    ML Guest

    That's too much stress if you ask me. It's doesn't seem fair at all. I just hope this is a great year.

    Manster has been in school since the 12th and this has been a nice long weekend holiday that we already needed! This 4th grade transition has been difficult. Plus I think he has his bi-annual sinus infection so coping skills are down.

    Thinking of you xoxo Hugs, ML
  5. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Oh yes, definitely. difficult child has just the ONE teacher that he just can't cope with...JUST ONE! But we have heard about her all weekend... (and I really think he would do better without her...)

    And I am certain our stress is nothing like what you are feeling. Hugs to you and difficult child!
  6. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Does your difficult child have the same code of conduct as everyone else? What I mean is, even though my difficult child has the same behavior expectations it is written in his IEP that his consequences are not necessarily the same as everyone else. For example, he can no longer be suspended out of school unless he commits what would be a level 4 offense such as bringing a weapon to school, seriously trying to hurt a teacher or pummeling someone. For other things he gets consequences, even in school suspensions but not out. They were able to determine that his behaviors were directly related to his disability therefore the difference.
  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Good point, Sharon. Actually, I've been wondering if they aren't punishing more (giving him harder punishments) than other kids. When he tore up his ibook last year, I paid for it, they took the computer away for the rest of the year, he was suspended out of school for 1 week, and they had him arrested, knowing he was on probation with a defferment for punishment of previous charges that were not committed at school. I thought that was absurd.

    I have no idea how to get them to come around to seeing that he shouldn't get punished more than typical students, much less that he shouldn't get punished as much. I speculate that it has something to do with their lack of knowledge about any issue other than ADHD and that any kid on an IEP for emotional disturbance is considered a behavior problem that needs every step out of line nipped in the bud by the strictest punishment possible.

    I need to get a therapist on board- I haven't been thrilled with the tdocs we had been seeing and now I've been seeing an intern psychiatric that works with a teaching psychiatric hospital for kids. I've been going over difficult child's history and trying to decide if I should take difficult child there. If I can get this guy on board, I could take him to an IEP meeting and I believe the team would listen to him. I'm taking that slow because I tried this with a therapist last year who charged me $100 then showed up to the meeting and offered NOTHING. He actually sat there while everyone from the sd complained about difficult child and just told them that he would work with difficult child on those issues that they complained about. Needless to say, i found that pretty frustrating. That was the same therapist who did a couple of other things afterwards that left me convinced that he's a quack.
  8. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    What's the reason listed on his IEP? Is it OHI (other health impaired)? I would think that punishing more harshly because of his illness/disability would be illegal & discriminatory. You may want to post about this over in Special Education.
  9. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    It's ED (Emotional disturbance)- they frowned upon changing it to OHI. After reading the pamplet from the bpkids website on Educating the BiPolar (BP) student, which recommends the OHI classification, I tend to think OHI gets the student more supports. However, the principal made it sound like difficult child would be put in a Special Education class and would be treated even more differently by teachers and other students if he had this classification. That is an issue with my son because he is actually fairly stable most of the time- so much so that it doesn't appear that he would even need an iep. However, when he's hypomanic, manic, or depressed, he desparately needs the iep. And now that he's been in so much trouble, he needs the iep to protect him from the repercussions of the label he has gotten. The docs all feel, and I agree, that difficult child needs to be kept in mainstream as much as possible. I tend to think the principal was really trying to prevent having to provide more supports. But then, last year when I was posting a lot about this on the Special Education forum, I got the impression that the ED or OHI classification had nothing to do with what supports were given to a student because they had to meet the individual needs, regardless of the classification.

    As far as giving him harder punishments- they have never told me that is what they were doing. I just think they are because I find it hard to believe that other kids get written up and punished to the same severity that my son has. Especially year before last- if he forgot to take a pencil to class it was a major crime and he was sent to in-school suspension. It appears that the kids who are classified ED are usually in collaborative classes- where there is an aid in what is supposed to be a general ed class. However, it became clear to me last year that the aid doesn't do anything except monitor the behavior of the kids on an iep. And I mean it is their job to stand in the back of the class and look for these kids doing something wrong- they have to check off on a form each day, for each iep kid, if the kid brought all supplies, sat down on time, listened and followed directions, etc. What does that tell you? They aren't helping the kid learn- they have the kid under a microscope for behavior. My son needs less pressure, not more.

    This therapist I'm starting to talk to used to be a school psychiatric. (He's an intern now so what does that say about the experience level of school psychs?) Anyway, I haven't decided yet if that is a benefit or a hindrance in difficult child's case. I have not thought too highly of any school psychiatric or ed spec that works for our sd that I have met. They didn't seem to know ANYTHING and appeared to only be there to back up what the principal says. If this therapist is like that, we won't keep seeing him and I definitely won't be taking him to an IEP meeting. Now, if he uses the knowledge he gained while working for an sd to advocate for difficult child, then it's a different story. I'll be seeing him Thurs. and should be able to finish the history portion of this and start asking the "what can you do for us" questions then.