Hi, I'm new. Anyone dealing with ambivalent attachment?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by kcford, Jan 29, 2008.

  1. kcford

    kcford New Member


    My husband and I have a 5 year old boy (adopted from a foreign country) who has had therapy for ambivalent attachment. He is definitely in one of his "push away" cycles. But now he is in kindergarten, and his classroom behavior is a problem. I am wondering if anyone has any ideas of waht I can share with his teacher in terms of strategies for managing his behavior.

    I'm really impressed with this group! You all are a wealth of information and support!:peaceful:
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    What type of professional diagnosed him? Are there any psychiatric problems in the birthfamily that you know of? Where did you adopt him from? Certain countries are more prone to certain problems--example: Eastern Europe has a lot of kids with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. In India the kids are often born prematurely and have problems due to that and malnutrition. Some kids who grew up in orphanages for a series of time have their own issues. I have two kids adopted from abroad. The one we got as an infant is very attached to us, but the one we adopted at age six never did really attach to the family. He was well-behaved, but he never wanted to be mothered and was very self-sufficient. He doesn't see us anymore, and nobody really knows why, but he married a woman from his birth country and is really involved in his roots.
    Do you know if your child had a good pre-natal birth experience and was born with good medical care?
    A lot of adopted kids, especially those with no real history, are VERY hard to diagnose. In all, we have four adopted kids (see signature below). They are much harder to diagnose/figure out than when you have a full family genetic history.
  3. kcford

    kcford New Member

    Thanks for your response. Our son was born in Kazakhstan and lived in an orphanage until 9 months of age. We have no birth family history. There is no indication that alcohol was an issue, but we're certain there was no pre-natal care. There is no evidence of abuse or intentional negelect from his orphanage stay, but as in all orphanages, it was a less than ideal environment. There were issues with medical care and adequate nutrition, and of course the amount of attention he got. I'm not criticizing - means were very meager.

    We were in therapy with him for two years and things greatly improved. When we were "discharged" from therapy, he was really feeling better. We were prepared, though, that during his life, especially during challenging times, he could backslide a bit. I guess now is one of those times.

    We're not back at square one, but the school angle is new. He has an IEP for speech, but not for any other services. Due to the therapeutic intervention, he thankfully did not need services beyond speech. (I should add that he has minor sensory processing disorder and minor physical challenges) I don't want him to be a "fall through the cracks" kid who doesn't get help because he is not severe.

    I'm really looking for suggestions or advice on how to work with his teachers for behavioral intervention before he really starts to go down hill.There just has to be a stage in between struggling and complete meltdown, right? (I won't get on my soapbox). I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm trying to avoid him needing moe services.

    Thanks for your time.

    PS - Everyone has info about themselves and their kids. Do I add that in my profile or signature?
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    It does help to have that profile because then we get a quick "see" about you and your child.
    Why don't you want more interventions? I found that the interventions made my son as functional as he is now. I am grateful for all the interventions we got as he has much less now because he had more when he was younger, if that makes sense.
    Has he ever had a complete evaluation by a neuropsychologist? Especially because he is adopted, with no birth history to look at, I'd want to make that stop. They are very good diagnosticians.
    How does your son do in school (grade-wise?) Does he know how to make friends? Can he make eye contact? Was his early development good? What kinds of things make him meltdown?
    With every child we adopted, we got them a complete (and I do mean COMPLETE) evaluation from IQ to LDs to autism screens to psychiatric screens because we wanted to know what was going on. We found out some interesting stuff. My son from Hong Kong had been described in reports as "very intelligent." When he was tested, he was in the "genuis" range (IQ over 160). He is now thirty and indeed brilliant--he is already a computer whiz, part business owner, and a millinaire (however he is also attachment-challenged).But it was good to know that he was so bright because we could gear activities to his busy mind. My Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified child had the most issues because his birthmom abused drugs in utero. He had delays and still has some social/life skills issues yet he is doing so much better than we ever expected.
    Warning: KIds on the autism spectrum have similiar traits to kids with attachment issues. They often don't like to be touched, don't make good eye contact except when they're comfortable, have sensory issues, tend to obsess and do meltdown.
    Can you go back to therapy too, since it helped?
    I'd post on Special Education 101 if you need help regarding school. They are so knowledgeable there.
  5. kcford

    kcford New Member

    Gosh, I didn't mean to sound like i didn't want to get more interventions. I meant that I don't want to wait long enough for the school system to decide he needs intervention. I know he's headed down hill and I want to catch him before he falls any further.

    The neuropsychologist evaluation sounds like a really great idea. I have him scheduled for a pretty thorough evaluation with a developmental pediatrician. I know they will be looking for things like ADD, LDs. I'll make sure they run the gamut.

    Thanks for your input.
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    You're welcome, kc. It's so hard to communicate on the internet.
    I hope you have great luck. My son really came along and yours can too ;)
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Welcome to our little haven!! Glad to see you, sorry you need us.

    Sounds like your son has a number of issues. I would get a private Occupational Therapy assessment (I never fully trust the school with this stuff). And there is a LOT that can help there.

    Then I would proceed to a developmental pediatrician. They will be able to do in-depth testing, as is age appropriate, and to point you to therapists, other specialists who can help.

    As for school, YOU are part of the IEP team and can call a meeting at ANY time to request new evaluation, change services, etc... The Special Education forum here will tell you how to do it. It is BEST to do it the way they suggest - they have really been there done that!! And sending these requests via certified mail with return receipt requested is really really important, even though it sounds like a pain or too formal. It puts protections in place for your son.



    ps. Here is a format to keep info about your child and all the things you try/go through straight and in 1 place. It is called Parent Input or a Parent Report. It is very helpful to keep in a big 3 ring binder with pockets added. You can make copies for doctors, therapists, etc.. I would be careful with what info I gave school, some times (not often, but often enough for caution) the info is used against us or our children. You just have to make a judgement call. Anyway, it was the 1st thing put into the General Archives, so it is on the very bottom of the very last page of the General Archives. http://www.conductdisorders.com/forum/showthread.php?t=182
  8. Lulu

    Lulu New Member

    Welcome! These ladies are really amazing. I am new here, too, but have already learned so much. Good luck with your son.