New Member
Not sire what I am doing here - I guess I am just fed up and looking for some encouragement and advise... The back storey..

My partner and I have adopted a boy - he is now 7. We were not prepared for what we received as we were told by foster parent (a person we now beleive just wanted him out of her home) that he is a good boy and we should not have any problems - no we were not naive enough to belive this, however we did not expect This... From the moment we got his their have been problems - pushing testing etc - Normal kid stuff until you take the non-stop nature and extreame that he does it... However We decided after 6 months or so of living with us - after we had a decent month or so that we would have a visit with Granfather - AS you can imagine life at home got rough - for about a month and a half non-stop. Then we had a little break until school started - the techer was not firm or consistant - to which we spoke to her about on first day of school - unfortunatly her attitude was she know what she was doing and did not follow our advise. So we went through another period of unhappiness... We FINALLY got the school to change teachers - at the same time the adoption went through to be finalized - we of course decided to have a party which included his birth grandparent and is foster parent - along with members from our family and friends group - you know bringing the new and old together to celebrate the new BIGGER family.. in hind sight - could not have made a worse move... Shortly after this be became violent - litterially beating my partner up - taking a stick to his school counsolur.. I had even at one point received a call from the school informing me my son was locked up in the conference room with no chairs because while sitting in there he decided he might try to throw the chair out the window... Nice huh? Well we got through all of that on to X-mas etc - more then a month has past at this point sense we needed to physcally restrain him (cradel hold to protect him and us). Yipee right? Everything is going OK until we get a package from his grand mother (to whom puts off all the wrong kinds of vibes)and it starts over - though not a sever... He keeps saying he wants to go back into foster care etc.... Well in the mist of all the post adoption fun my partner had to quit her job due to his behavior (either that or we were both going to lose our jobs!) and has sense decided to return to school - as his issues at his school have not been needing her attention... Now I take him to school and she is still home in plenty of time to pick him up after school... From the time she started school he has push every dang button he can and we are at a breaking point... He has SERIOUS control issues with he and he is mad she is doing something for herself that does not involve him. Please do not advise counsolers - each time we have attempted it has made the problems worse... And each time we have thought - well can it get any worse... only to find out yes it can. We have even tried to see a counsoler for us as parents to get advise and perspective only to be told we are doing everything right and to keep going - one even asked why we were there as their was nothing she couls add to what we are doing - other then to hang in there - very helpful!.

Normally I am a very upbeat happy kinda person - lack of sleep constant stress - work/home and consern for my partner - has made me an angry woman - I HATE the way I feel and do not like the person I am right now. I can not stand holding my partner while she crys because our son has decided he does not like the idea of her going to school - could you imagine how trapped and guilty she must feel? GARRRRR !!! Plase advise/help... I need to know this will get better - our home is not a healthy place right now...

No other children,
Me: 30 - Tech Supervisor
Partner: 35 now stay at home mo / full time student
Animals: 3 cats 1 new puppy...


New Member
It sounds like you live in a rough world right now. Have you tried to have him evaluated yet? What kind of counselor did he see? Was it an actual therapist? I hope it gets better, but I would try for a complete evaluation.


Welcome. I'm glad you found us.

I'm not going to suggest counselors, but I am going to suggest you have your son evaluated, either by a neuropsychologist or a multidisciplinary team at a university or children's hospital. In your shoes, I wouldn't want to go on like this, and I'd want to get to the bottom of what's going on so the proper interventions could be put into place.

Do you know if he suffered abuse in either the bio or foster home? Do you have any info on family history?

Again, welcome.


New Member
Complete evaluation done..

Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD); ADD; PTSD... We do not see or agree with the ADD.. The rest is clear. We do not agree with the ADD because he does not display the same things in different settings - also he clearly as control - if I find the right thing to say at the right time it is over.... I just do not always have the right thing..

Counsolers all specilized with adopted kids with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD)...

Thank you for responding@


New Member
History of neglet and abuse physcial and mental.. I question sexually because of the way he acts out at times - though none reported.

Family history:
Mother VERY young (15) drugs and booze.. Gave it up a month into preg.. Mildly effected by Fragil X (he tested negitive, also no substance found in system, lived mostly with grandmother during preg, she also claims bio mom was clean for preg...)
Uncle Fragil X
Grandmother - something wrong with her - but do not know what - very unstable
Grand father - X boozer... says strong family history of substance abuse.

Foster home - very COLD and seeming uncareing. Based on her accounts - not his - he was only allowed to play in his room and back yard. He ate every meal alone - no manners were tought or exected, he did not even bath himself prior to our home - We have logged a complaint as the vast majority of this came from her not him (he also has lying issues)....


Well-Known Member
I've adopted six kids, three from foster care. Two are gone. One who is gone was a good kid in a bad situation. The bad situation was the other one we adopted almost at the same exact time. We were told by foster mom, social worker, and a psychiatrist that the elevin year old boy that we adopted was a really good-hearted kid who just had cognitive delays. I don't think they knew otherwise. Two years later we found out he had sexually abused all of his younger siblings, and had done so in other homes too (his foster mom was appalled because she had day care kids and, in five years, he was such a good sneak, and scared the other kids so badly, that nobody told her and she'd never have guessed). He fooled us too. I don't think you can expect an older foster child not to have serious issues. He could have anything from bonding problems to fetal alcohol issues to bipolar disorder to a form of high functioning autism and you don't know WHAT he has been through before you got him. One thing I learned is never take any child profile at face value. And we learned the hard way. The elevin year old was removed quickly, the day we finally found out what he had done. He was too damaged by life by the time we got him and we couldn't help him, and the other kids were terrified of him. He didn't remember having been sexually abused, but obviously he had. Your child's ex foster mom didn't tell you anything to get the child out of the house. As a former foster mother, you can request to have a child removed at any time, and nobody can make you keep that child. She maybe just wanted a good home for her. Also, maybe the idea of a perm. family freaked out your child. I strongly recommend a complete, total, intensive NeuroPsychological and psychiatric evaluation. You may never know the whole picture, but that's the best you can do. He needs serious professional evaluations and he may need medication. If you have any knowledge of his birthparents, take a hard look. That will tell you a lot. If he was exposed to drugs in utero that alone can cause problems. My one son we still have in our home whom we adopted from foster care was very lucky. Although he was born with crack in his system, he is a very good-natured kids and never had to live with him b-mom. He had one foster home before ours and was bonded and came to us a happy kid, although he has a form of autism (probably due to the drugs in utero). Don't think you can do this yourself or that tough parenting alone is enough and lower your expectations. This child may be incapable of loving you or anybody. Just a guess. I'd run out and get this kid tested by the best neuropsychologist and Child psychiatrist around. I wouldn't settle for a therapist or even a regular psycologist. That didn't do any good in trying to evaluate our foster child that we adopted. As you can see in my signature, we have adopted kids in every way possible. It's easiest, in my opinion, when the child comes very young.


New Member
Wow - not really what I wanted to hear - but good sound advise - thank you! It has been over a year sense his nuro.. and that was done when he was in the foster system. I thank you as I think this is the direction I will start with - getting the re-done.

And yes, I think you are right I think the Idea of having a forever family has freaked him out. I am stubborn and am not ready to give up on him, but I need to face realities - I need to find a way to make my home a healthy home again or I am not doing him myself or my partner any good.

I will begin looking to get a new nuro done ASAP...

Thank you again for your reality check and bluntness - I appreiate it!


Well-Known Member
My advice is a neuropsychologist AND a psychiatrist. When you have little bio. info, like we had, and doctors can't even link what may be genetic, it's good to see as many GOOD professionals as you can. I didn't mean to scare you. It's just that many people, myself included, have or had the idea that you can adopt a child, love him, and that will make him better. I found out, to my shock, that many kids who were never really a part of a family fend for themselves at very young ages and often don't want to be loved. Some have had experiences happen to them that they can't even remember. Some are drug affected so their thinking is skewed (not all drug affected kids are a mess--my 13 year old is the sweetest kid on earth!). I'm saying you need to evaluate him often, as he is complicated with a question marks in his genetic background, and you can't try doing this yourself or you won't help him and you'll burn yourself out. I was very naive myself when I adopted Lucas. Then because Lucas did so well, I wanted to adopt an even older child (Lucas had been two) and give him a home, and we adopted two more, one right after the other. I feel very guilty that the child we adopted after the elevin year old was also sexually abused by the elevin year old. He went to a foster home and we released him to them and they adopted him. He'd been with us less than a year and that was a much better family for him and I hear he's doing well. (((Hugs))) and keep writing. others will come along with suggestions. The thing is, adopted kids who have some blank spaces in their history are very hard to diagnose. It's not the same as a biological child, where you know what happened to him all his life, and you know the genetics. Take care :smile:


New Member
I understand, but correct me if my thinking is flawed, wouldn't it be better to get a neuro and then select a psychiatric based one specility per the results of the neuro? Or rather the preliminary results? Just blindly picking a psychiatric frightens me as we have now had several bad experiances - one of which left him peeing his pants every time he got mad or upset for a week - would not matter where he was, school, home, grocery store (no you may not have a candy bar right now - piddle he would go...) I am very gun shy so to speak with the whole psychiatric thing - I fear many do more harm then good - and how much harm will be done while we are attempting to find one that is good??? I honestly do no think we can take a whole lot more...


Mom? What's a difficult child?
I would maybe get the appointment. with the neuro-psch scheduled and ask for a suggestion for a competent psychiatrist, maybe at the first appointment with the neuro-psch, they can suggest a psychiatrist that has worked with adopted children or have an idea???

I don't know where you are but here in our area it can take months to get an apt. with anyone good, if at all...
just a suggestion...
Sorry you are having a hard time... it really sucks when all you want to do is love them and you are restraining them!!!


Well-Known Member
I would be looking for an attachment specialist as well. Perhaps you can inquire at the local Children's Hospital how to go about finding the best team for your child, because you are going to need a team of people. Perhaps involve CPS/Foster system as well. They should be responsible to provide some of the supports you will need through the years. I have seen several times on this site where the adoption does not include extra services - but this is a special needs child and it should have.

timer lady

Queen of Hearts
It sounds as though your difficult child has quite the hx in the bio home.

As the parent of 12 y/o twins with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) & PTSD, I may be able to help some. (My tweedles have been with us going on 7 years now.)

It sounds like you've had evaluations of sorts; was the Vineland assessment part of the evaluation? The reason I ask is that you will get an idea of just where your difficult child is developmentally & emotionally. While kt & wm are physically 12 years of age, developmentally & emotionally they test out at 5 & 2.5 years of age respectively.

Given that, we have reworked the treatment plan to that age level. Additionally, we are in attachment work. It's a very gentle, slow process. Attachment disorder doesn't just happen & won't be cured miraculously overnight.

Our first line of attack was to address any issues that could be improved by medications. My children carry the diagnosis of BiPolar (BP) as well as Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) & PTSD. They both are on medications that address the BiPolar (BP) & anti anxiety agents that helps with the anxiety of the PTSD.

We have been slowly chipping away at the attachment issues. The ability to trust the primary caregivers (parents). Unfortunately, we've had to take a team approach. wm, for safety reasons, is not living in our home & may likely never live here again. We are a "family of different addresses".

kt is scheduled to be discharged from Residential Treatment Center (RTC) next Friday after almost 10 months of treatment, with a boatload of services. Many times, a child with a severe hx of abuse, neglect & PTSD, will need a team approach. We utilize Integrated Listening Systems (ILS), PCA, respite services, along with attachment therapy & a few other things thrown in for good measure.

I often say that it does indeed take a village to raise my children.

There is a book (hard to find) The Dance of Attachment by Holly van Gulden that you may want to read. I'd also recommend Parenting the Hurt Child. Nancy Thomas has a couple of good books, though I cannot remember the names off hand.

In the meantime, when your difficult child is at his worst I would suggest sensory things. kt & wm had a bed tent on their bed for a few years - helped them feel cocooned & safe at night. Lots of rocking, if your difficult child will tolerate it. Warm baths, a gentle massage.

Follow through with that evaluation if that's your next move. Contact the adoption agency you adopted through & ask for help.

Children with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) combined with PTSD are a long journey. Parenting these children isn't the norm; in fact, it's quite different.

Find time to take care of yourself. Find time for you & your partner.

This is a journey of many small steps.


Well-Known Member
I'd like to add that a Neurologist will be unlikely to pick anything up because a Neurologist deals with things like MS or epilepsy, not the psychiatric disorders and usually is poor, for some reason, at finding autism and other neurological issues that cause behavioral problems rather than physical symptoms. I don't like the psychiatric community either. I have bipolar and have been misdiagnosed myself, and my son was too, at first, that is why I highly recommend sticking to a neuropsychologist (for testing--they do the best job) and a Psychiatrist with a good reputation (the guy with the MD). I don't like any non-MD therapists to be first line doctors for psychiatric issues. I really got nothing out of therapy. My son was misdiagnosed by a myriad of psycologists. Neuropsychs are different. They have training in the brain and, again, they do extensive testing to try to pinpoint what's wrong as scientifically as they can. Then they refer you out. They don't try to treat the problem. They direct you. They are far more accurate than a school district. We got nowhere with the school testing, not in two different school districts. Let's just say, schools are rarely "up" on things and don't tend to hire the best. They thought everything was due to ADHD. I think that's because ADHD was all they knew, and it was their catch-all for everything. They recommended medications, although they have no medical degrees. My son saw a few neurologists and they missed the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) because it's not severe, but it was still causing him lots of learning and behavior issues. He is such a settled, nice kid now. The right help can often make such a big difference. However, with adopted kids, stuff like the trauma they lived through, substance abuse in utero, inherited psychiatric problems, lack of history, etc. all come into the mix. The kids that we adopted overseas were in better shape than the two fosters that we adopted who are now gone. However, we did adopt one brilliant six year old from Hong Kong and, although he never caused me a lick of trouble and grew up to be quite affluent, he is not attached to us the way my other kids are. The other kids came at ages 2 and under. I also have one bio. child. I believe all the kids except for the one I adopted at six are as attached to us as our biological kid. Because of the false info we got on elevin year old, and the problems it caused, we will never adopt an older child again. EVER. As for getting help after the adoption for special needs kids, that hasn't been our experience. We got precious little help before we finalized our adoption, and none afterwards. To be honest, I'm glad. I'd rather pick out my own help. There are so many bad apples out there...a university hospital would be my first choice and a good place WILL have a waiting list. Until then, you may want to read "The Explosive Child" by Ross Greene. Good luck!


Active Member
I just want to chime in and applaud your efforts...I greatly admire the path that you are taking, one that deserves more accolades than the foster system allows. My only advice is to continue to hang tough (I know easier said than done).

My guess is that your difficult child is sure that no one is ever going to love him, and he is trying to push the 2 of you away until you leave, like everyone else has in his life. If, over time, you can consistently let him know that you will never leave him, and love him no matter what, I really think some of the behaviors will decrease. Not all, of course, because some are neurological it would seem.........but the consistency in your unconditional love will do wonders. My son, still has not had an effective counselor, and we have seen at least a 2 dozen in his life, so I do not put a lot of merit in counseling per se....but I do put a lot of merit in consistent love, medications, structure, and working with a psychiatrist that really gets what that child needs.

I also would not allow any contact with the gparents, if possible. He has obviously been traumatized by them, even though it has not been documented or verbalized in detail - his actions show that their presence is traumatizing. My son did this with his bio dad....every time he saw him he freaked out for weeks at a time until finally I refused for them to have visitation.

Again, I applaud all you are doing.....I hope you are able to hang in there with it - our world needs more foster parents that are willing to take the risk on the more "unlovable kids".


New Member
I assume HX is History...

MidWest Mom - Thank you for your continued feed back! We will take your advise and look for a neuropsyc, and will look into Psys' with MD's - Great Feed Back! We have had simular experiances with the schools - they are now doing things our way belive it or not - nor will they ever brouch the subject of medications or access to any of his health professionals again - a road we went down with them after they "susgested" to us to medicate our non-add child for ADD frequently enough - and with enough judgement to consider it hassasment. Rough word - but I will not be badgered or guilted into doing something to my child I do not belive in - always open to advise and susgestions by the SD took it too far... Sorry for the tangent - the subject is still rather irratating as still do not under stand how a school that has only seen my child for 6 hours a day over a period of a month or too can presume to know him better then I and to think that they have the right to litterally try to guilt me and badger me to the extent of actually questioning my commitment to my child OPENLY because I would not medicate him for ADD... Never mind the fact that I do not this he IS ADD.... Opps - I was apploigizing for my tangent and then took off with it... done now...

Thank You Again..

Sequoia - We have already terminated contact with Foster parent and BGM for those specific reasons - BGF never played to my knowledge a major role in his life prior to his going into foster, so we are hoping to attempt to maintain a relationship there - although we need to wait until he stabalizes again. As a rule I feel the the VAST MAJORITY of foster parents are poeple out their doing what is honestly best for the children - or at least what they THINK is best.... However I do not feel this one was one of them.. unfortantaly for difficult child - and selfishly us... We have a lot of work to do - but it seems at times it is getting harder... I appreiate the words support and advise!


Active Member
Hi Bonkers (not sure I like calling you that!). Welcome back, I was wondering how you and your partner were getting on.

On the subject of ADD/not ADD - difficult child 3 has a diagnosis of ADHD which, on consideration, I feel is not really ADHD. I think in his case it's an extension of his autism. However, for difficult child 3 medications have been almost miraculous. He also started on dexamphetamine at three years old, much to the horror of people who we know. People were appalled. But we were desperate enough to try anything and the result really was amazing. difficult child 3, whose language skills were limited, began to talk and within a week was using sentences. On days when we failed to medicate him there were outbursts, rages and a total inability to cope with a wide range of sensory input. And this wasn't rebound - we went through that at one stage with difficult child 1. difficult child 3 missed his medications for a couple of weeks at one point and after a week had lost a vast amount of language. It was really frightening.

I'm not telling you this as a way to urge you to medicate your son - you have your reasons for not doing this. I just wanted you to see that often with kids like ours what you get is not what you expect. Our kids are often showing us how preconceptions can be misleading. Even if you don't think your son has ADD (and you may be right - after all, you're the one living with him) this doesn't mean the medications wouldn't help.

But they also may not. Similarly, we might have tried them and found them to be a disaster. For a lot of schools who have seen some wonderful, almost magical transformations, medication seems to be the Great White Hope; the ultimate Answer. But this is simplistic.

You commented after MWM's first post when she mentioned other possibilities, that some of her suggestions, while helpful, were a bit alarming for you - was that the mention of high-functioning autism that scared you? I hope not, but if it was it is another example of how society predisposes us to panic at the mention of a word which no longer should hold fear for us.

My reaction when told difficult child 3 was autistic (I had been expecting maybe Asperger's) was grief, despair and then anger. We were told he'd never be able to go to a normal school. He wasn't capable of much intellectually. But boy, were they wrong. And we felt the diagnosis had to be wrong - autistic kids are in their own world and avoid other people - difficult child 3 has always been incredibly social, he would go home with a total stranger if we let him. He never had a problem meeting new people, would go to a total stranger as readily as to me. And yet - we now understand why he has this diagnosis. However, they were wrong about his prognosis.

And they were wrong for a lot of reasons, not the least being that autism is not a closed book. These kids are blank pages with a lot of potential, if only you can find the language in which to write. And whenever you're trying to decode a book it's best to first familiarise yourself with the language. When you use the same language and you're on the same page you have a better chance of breaking through.

But this is just an example. Misdiagnoses are amazingly common. For example, you consider ADD to be a misdiagnosis. So what else could they have missed? Always keep an open mind. Meanwhile, try and get inside his head (which sounds like what you are trying to do). The label can help get material and practical support. Your observations and understanding can help you reach him and connect. You don't use a label with that.

Our difficult child 3 is far from normal, but he has come such a long way. We recognise that a lot of it is his determination, but he has needed to feel safe and supported in order to have the confidence to keep trying. We wasted a lot of years in the process. Now we have a bright, confident, motivated, honest student achieving consistently highly.

What I'm saying - there is hope. But it's also needing some intensive involvement from you and your partner, with support from school.

One very strong recommendation I make to you - keep a diary for him. A Communication Book can be a much greater help than people realise, in heading problems off at the pass. It provides a greater level of communication between home and school with more immediacy. It works like this:
You get a blank exercise book and put a label on it (his name, and "Communication Book", plus the request for all involved to write in it anything of interest, good or bad, to facilitate rapid response and good communication). Then cover it with sturdy plastic. The book stays in his school bag. I emphasise (as the result of our past problems) - it is NOT to be the child's responsibility to give the book to the teacher, or to you. The book is not for him to read. At home, you take the book out of his bag. At school, the teacher does. This is vital.
You write in the book anything which you think would help the teacher to know. For example - "He's running late today, he slept in and is irritable." This gives the teacher advance notice that he's likely to be more reactive than usual. She might write, "He had a better morning than you anticipated. However, playtime wasn't good, I think we might need to put more supervision in place." Or whatever is happening.
As well as this, keep a diary on your computer (I doubled up and did both - the diary comprised my entries in the Book) so you can look back in a year's time and see if there is a pattern. For example, you feel there was a connection between seeing various psychologists and t he rise of some problem behaviours. The Communication Book helps you nail this in place, or discount it. It is concrete evidence which can save you a lot of time and trouble. The sooner you recognise such a problem, the sooner you can step in and stop whatever is happening to make things worse.

This may seem trivial, but it made a huge difference to us. The teachers generally embraced this because it meant fewer classroom steps consults, with an exhausted teacher desperate to get home for a stiff drink, or maybe a valium and a good lie down. It is in THEIR interests to support this.

The times we had most troubles - they were the times when the teacher felt the Book was no longer needed, and tried to wean us off it. Needless to say, at the next IEP meeting the Book was reinstated and problems eased.

I suggest this because it is not just for kids with autism. This works for any kids with behaviour problems with complex causes. If you can sort out problems within hours instead of days or weeks, there is more immediacy in how you handle things.

Two final rules -
1) Do not punish school misbehaviour, at home. The school is handling it. However, do not undermine the school either. If you think they are wrong, sort it out between you away from his presence.

2) Allow teaches to vent. Do not get angry with a teacher who writes, "Your kid was a total BRAT today!!!!!" Surely you understand the frustration? Instead, be grateful the teacher feels sufficiently safe to confide feelings to you. Always value the honesty, even when it hurts. If you feel the teacher has misjudged your child, that is different. But recognise that people make mistakes.

It sounds to me like you are really doing the absolute best you can. And the continuing problems would indicate that there is something in him that needs to be helped. It's not you guys, in other words.

Keep us posted, let us know how you're getting on.



New Member
<span style="color: #663366">linda had some great advice for you.

when looking for a psychiatrist i would look for one who has a good working knowledge of Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) & PTSD....find one who knows Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) & he'll know about PTSD as they seem to go hand in hand at least in adoption situations. i'd also look into an attachment therapist.

i agree with-whoever said to cut off the grandparents. contact with-them obviously destabilizes them. tell them it's temporary until he's in a place where he can deal with-them with-o falling apart.

why no medications??? i know there is nothing that targets Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) specifically but there are medications that can help him gain some control & would hopefully be only a temporary measure.



Well-Known Member
I think most psychiatrists understand attachment disorders and PTSD. I wouldn't look for a specialist in anything yet. I'd let the diagnostic process go through. Our experience with an attachment therapist was that, simply because one of our sons was adopted, he had attachment disorder and THAT was the cause of everything. Not only was that wrong, but he doesn't have attachment disorder. He is not living with us anymore (this is the nice kid that we sent to foster care because he got caught up in the mess with the abusive child we adopted, but is is VERY bonded to his new family! We keep in touch. He is not only NOT a behavior problem, but is acing school and doing sports and bucking everything that a foster child is supposed to be. We decided to let him go because he'd been abused in our home (by his elevin year old brother). This child had been through enough sexual abuse even before he came to us (and, guess what????? Again, the state didn't "know" about it!!!). Anyways, I'd get the other stuff under control and see what's left over. You can do the bonding stuff after you see what else is going on. Most parents who lose their rights to their kids have serious mental health issues, and these are hereditary.Also, again, he may have been alcohol or drug affected too. Let the neuropsychologist look at him first (my own personal opinion) and do the attachment stuff later, after everything else shakes out. There are therapists who believe all adopted kids can't bond, and I find them dangerous. It's simply not true. Your son's behavior can be caused by so many issues that I wouldn't hone in on one thing right now. I'd keep an open mind and listen to a regular Psychiatrist and a neuropsychologist. We had our son (the one still with us) see both, and it was over-the-top helpful. Way back when we also had some turd tell us the kid had attachment disorder and that's why he was raging. He didn't have it. He is attached to my hip now...lol. I imagine your son DOES have some attachment issues, but I doubt that's the only thing going on and you kind of have to treat it like an orchestra--get everything in sync. So I'd just see well-informed professionals and not focus on anyone who specializes. Again, our experience with specialists is that they see their specialty in every child (ie: they specialize in ADHD then the kids they see all have ADHD, they specialize in bipolar, the kids all have mood disorders, they specialize in attachment therapy (and most of these therapists are NOT doctors) you spend a ton of money and, if adopted, yes, your child has attachment problems causing everything). Just to start out, I would avoid anyone who "spcializes" in just one disorder. You don't have to take my advice and I'm certainly not the last and only word, but I'm passing along what I think would help the most and take from it what you will and take from the others what you will. Just don't try to do it alone. It's too hard for you. And I certainly understand your school rant. Been there/done that :smile:


New Member
Thank you all again for you responses,

Marguerite - The Midwest mom orginally quote was not alarming, just strong and straight forward no BS - which is why my reaction was WOW- it was not a specific statement.. I was taken aback - but it was what i needed to hear and was good for me to hear. I can not really tell you what I expected though...

He is actually doing well in School right now, We worked VERY closely with them and we have several processes in place including a daily card he brings home, he gets yes' or no's on all Items through the day (recess, math etc..) for both behavior and work completed... more yes' then no's means he goes to the school counsoler after school and gets to pick from a prize bucket, when he gets home he gets lots of "good job's" and the card get matted onto colored construction paper, glitter letters are drawn on with the words of his choice (difficult child ROCKS!, etc...) with sticks draxinmgs etc... and posted on his wall... Not so hot days resuilt in a , come on kido we both know you can do better then this - tommarow is another day though.. kinda talks... Breif and to the point - as much as I can manage.
As For medications, I am not anti - medications, not by any means, We put him on prozac for about 2 weeks as recommended for anxity, the reason we stopped is at the 2 week period when it was fully in his system was the first time he became violent - to an extream! This went on severly for about another week after he was taken off... We found out later that one of prozac's possiable side effects in kids is the possibility of extream violence... We wnat to make sure if he is taking medications it is for the right diagnoses... For ADD/ADHD I have been told the expected medication is a stimulant - he reacts to caffine and other stimulents the same way most folks react to expresso the first time they have it... I want to make sure it is right... When he came to live with us he was on a huge does of cloanadine (sorry my spelling is horriable - very phonic based!)for ADD and nightmares.. His dose had been uped 3 time in 4 months and everyone said it was not making a difference.. We took him off it (because if it was not helping what was the point) with the support and assistance with his then psychiatric. As for the nightmares within 2 months of living with us he does not have them anymore, unless he had a visit with Grandfather, or even as little as a card from Grandmother.. We are down to MAYBE one a month, closer to every other month. They were three to four times a week, blood curdling screeming night terrors (they were always called night mares, but when his dreams scare me and everyone else in the house I think night terrors is closer...) We are not against medications.. Just want to make sure it is right..

My Partner and I actually have a great relationship, we just celebrated out 11th anniversary and are going strong, Our biggest issue is the lack of time we have to spend together. We have never been fighters, we have always been able to accept our differences and find comprimies where needed.... Sounds too good to be true? I still wake up in the mornings wondering what I did to be so lucky in love and to find my perfect match. difficult child tried to push us apart attempted to play us against each other - the normal plays to the level that only difficult child can acheive (I am sure you know what I mean with your difficult child's) to no avail. He has learned - still tries but not as hard - nor is he no longer superised when he is caught and consiquenses are enacted!...

Bonkers is how I feel fairly often these days - After all I must be at least a little nuts a looitle loopy and bonkers to still be able to smile through some of this... Though some days it is a lot harder... It is not an insult to me, mearly a reflection of my perceived mental status in my own odd humor... :cool:

Thank you for the clairfication, I spoke with my partner last night and we both see merit in the MD for the psychiatric, you also make a very strong point for not specilizing. I feel their is merit in Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) for difficult child, however I do not feel that means he CAN NOT attach - which for some reason many think it does. He was mis-treated neglected tossed all over the place Bio mom would drop him off somewhere and not come back for weeks when she would say it would only be and hour etc... He was brought into care at 4 in one home for a month then into his only other foster home - a therputic home because of speach and neglect issues. He was there for almost 2 years before living with us. He does not seem to be bonded in anyway with her, nor did she seem to be with him - like I said, a very cold home.. But I do not think that means he can not attach. I feel that in many ways he is attached to my partner and I, just not in a healty "normal" way - YET... I have hope... Maybe that goes back to the bonkers screen name!! Thank you again.... Please keep advising!


Well-Known Member
Oh, I'm sure he has attachment issues. but some therapists, especially those who specialize in attachment disorder (we saw one) think all the trouble is due to attachment. There are so many co-morbids that mimic it that I'd start there first and see what's left after he's stable. Not all unattached kids act out like that. My child that we adopted at six never broke a rule. It was almost weird. He was the very, very good kid who never did anything wrong. But he never really attached to us, although he tried, I believe. Now he's thirty and still finding himself. I would guess that your son has many things going on so seeing somebody just for attachment, even before you see a psychiatrist (with that MD...lol) and a neuropsychologist who may be able to test and tell if the child has alcohol effects or autistic tendencies probably won't yeild the entire picture. It is very difficult when you adopt complicated kids, but I do think the best approach (again JMO) is to see somebody who has an open mind about what might be wrong and is not overly focused on one possibility. You can always find somebody for those problems after the child is more stablized. Any sort of therapy helps kids more after they are stable (adults too. I say this as one who has had extensive therapy). I believe your son probably has attachment issues, but I'd see what else is there first. They may not be as bad as it looks now. Other things could be making him act out more. My 13 year old was yanked from his birthmother at birth, then yanked from the foster parents who he knew as his parent at age two. He came to us. This child, for some reasons, never had attachment issues. He does have autism. Somebody could have read his poor eye contact as attachment disorder. It's really part of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Again, your child probably DOES have attachement issues, but I doubt if it's the whole picture. Our son, who was and still is, a sexual predator (he's in foster care now) was diagnosed with Severe Reactive Attachement Disorer once removed from our home. However, he also had symptoms of fetal alcohol effects which can make a child conscience-challenged. I think he had some sort of brain damage. His birthmother almost killed him--not on purpose, but because she fed him too much water and no formula. He was also exposed to drugs and alcohol. I would not be surprised to see his face on television one day, saying he killed somebody as he also killed two of our dogs (he said a bully neighbor did it, and we believed him--are we naive or what?) But he acted like our little angel. Anyways, enough. I'm glad you're going to get him an intensive evaluation from that MD Psychiatrist and I would also do a neuropsychologist report. Those two inputs will prove invaluable. Make sure you find somebody with a reputation for helping other people's kids. Ask for help in finding somebody. Save the therapists opinion (the ones with no medical training at all) for when you are referred to one by a Psychiatrist that has already got your kid's number and helped him. You're a good person. I hope it all works out and that you post again. Again, this is JMO.