husband totally against medication

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by missy7222, May 22, 2008.

  1. missy7222

    missy7222 Guest

    Hi, my husband is totally against medication. I don't know if we're at the medication point yet, but its like he doesn't even want to consider it. I don't want to "zobmie" my daughter out, but if there is something that could take off the edge, I would consider it.

    Has anyone else had a husband who was opposed to the medication issue?


  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Both my husband and I came to the decision with a lot of research and thought. We started medication with each of our children when their symptoms were affecting life function and when we had worked closely for several months with a board-certified child psychiatrist, who evaluated them, diagnosed them and offered medications that targeted their dxes.

    My questions to you: Are you working with a child psychiatrist? Has your daughter been evaluated thoroughly? What diagnosis would you be medicating?
  3. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Hello Missy,
    The medication question is always a hard one.

    In my experience, initially my husband was reluctant to medicate difficult child, but without medications it was becoming impossible for difficult child to function in the world. He was completely out of control.

    Think of it this way...if your child had a physical condition such as diabetes that required medication, would you withhold it? Sometimes medications for our children are necessary for their brains to function properly.

    It's not an easy decision in any case, and there's no right answer...but why rule out something that might increase your daughter's (and your) quality of life?

  4. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    How much is your husband involved with the kids, from day to day, minute to minute?

    It is my experience that family members who are less involved take longer in the denial phase than family members who are hands-on. We like to think our precious children are perfect and will do well in life, growing up to become doctors, lawyers, leaders of the country. To have to accept that your child has a problem - we ALL tend to spend some time saying, "No, not MY child." But the closer you are to the coal seam, the easier it is to say, "This stuff is really very black."
    The further away you are, the easier it is to go on kidding yourself that everything's perfect, that the child is merely an individual and has determination which will see him/her through to a life of wonderful success.

    For us, the cure was to ensure the person in denial had to take some fairly heavy shifts in caring for the child "at the coal face".

    And if they refuse? Then they have just given up the right to be critical of the choices you make for the child.

  5. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    It's hard when you are on two different pages. husband and I made the decision together. He was actually ready before I was. I was thinking he was too young (4) but husband had thought it would be better before school started so that it might help him get off to a better start so we did start then.

    I look at it from Trinity's point of view, if my child had a physical condition I would not withhold medications.

    Does he go with you to the dr appts so he can hear what he/she has to say?
  6. Loving Abbey 2

    Loving Abbey 2 Not really a Newbie

    I have a whole family full of people who do not think difficult child should be on medication's. And I have to say its about 2 things: 1. quality of life with therapy and behavior plan--If kid hates themselves and never has any fun because thier behaviors get in the way--then it's time for action and 2. your husband may be missing the true nature of mental illness--they are neurologically based disorders, meaning there is something wrong with the way the child's brain is working--actually beleiving that is key for anyone to understand and agree with the use of medications and for a medication trial to be successful.

    Try to get husband to think of how difficult child must really feel when out of control and how bad that must make him feel about himself. And tell him that feeling will not go away without a lot of help, which may include medication if necessary. Maybe a good way to approach this may be to first look at natural treatments like diet and supplements. If that doesn't work and working with a psychologist for therapy and developing a behavior plan, then you can have a better case for medications. Part of the therapy work may need to be with you and husband to get on the same page and learn to support each other as parents.

    Just my two cents.
  7. Sara PA

    Sara PA New Member

    I"m not sure what edge you want to take off but I'll just toss out that you are going to be hard pressed to find medication that's going to be effective for a child who has anxiety and ADHD. The stimulants, which treat ADHD, shouldn't be prescribed for people with anxiety disorders because the most common side effect is anxiety.

    I would consider that maybe what looks like ADHD and ODD is really the way your child deals with her anxiety.
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I have another take on medications, partly because of my son and partly because I've been on medications now since I've been 23 (I'm 54). There were some medications that definitely made me probably look "better" but they actually just doped me to zombiedom. I hated feeling doped up so I'd quit taking them. I'm disturbed by how fast doctors hand out medications and how many medications they pile into kids. I know first hand you can feel far worse when you are wrongly or overmedicated. So this is my opinion (which certainly isn't gospel). Here goes.
    Since diagnoses are often wrong, and my son is a prime example, you may want to have a more intensive evaluation before medicating your child, especially since your husband is against it. We rushed into medications for my son (stimulants first) and they made him worse. All ADHD medications made him mean and aggressive. Why? Maybe because, although it looked like ADHD, his main problem wasn't really ADHD. There are many ADHD mimickers.
    Then he was diagnosed wrongly with bipolar disorder, and put on REALLY heavy duty medications for three years until we finally got a neuropsychologist evaluation (ten hours of intensive testing) because we just didn't believe it was bipolar. He didn't seem bipolar (I have bipolar). He's been off all medications now for almost four years and he's never been this good. However his first diagnosis was ADHD/ODD. He is neither. He is on the autism spectrum which is why all those medications made him worse. Although I think there is a definite place for medications, I do think people often rush into them expecting them to perform miracles. Sometimes they do, but it has to be the right medication for the right diagnosis. Do you have any doubt that the diagnosis is right? If you've ever thought "I wonder if it's something else" maybe you should get your child a neuropsychologist exam before giving her stimulants or Straterra. Or anything else for ADHD. ADHD/anxiety symptoms can actually be other things...I'd check it out with a neuropsychologist THEN talk to hub about medications if the diagnosis. requires them. I personally wish we had not rushed and had gone with our gut feeling that this child was on the autism spectrum. They are so fast to jump to ADHD...and in my opinion now they are also rushing bipolar...make darn sure you have the right diagnosis. first or your child could end up like mine. That doesn't mean don't means maybe go slower, maybe hub has a point, maybe you should explore all options first. Good luck, whatever you decide to do.
  9. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Sara, that's a good point. I can only speak for my boys who are not typical ADHD but have the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) thing going as well, but both have extreme anxiety issues.

    We have medicated both with stims and this has generally been successful. When not medicated, their anxiety is no better, because I think their not being able to cope (everything is confusing, they have much more trouble staying focussed) also pushes their anxiety up, so it balances out. The medications make it easier for them to rationalise their anxiety, at least partly.

    Also, we are just now dealing with an incident that in the past would have had difficult child 3 screaming in outbursts as a result of anxiety - and he's not. What happened? When we went to drama class on Wednesday night, difficult child 3 insisted (as usual) on bringing his backpack with him, the one that has every Nintendo DS game he owns. He also had his DS and a couple of games in his carry case. Now, for difficult child 3, his DS is almost surgically attached to him.
    And he left his backpack behind. Hundreds of dollars worth of games in there.

    Was he anxious? I expected tears, screams, rages, the lot. Nothing. Instead, it was, "They're all my friends. Someone will have picked it up and will bring it along next week."
    He is very trusting. He did nag me to telephone to let them know at the hall that he'd left his bag, and they hadn't seen it. We got a phone call today - the drama teacher took it home with her, it is safe. I told him - he is calm.
    And he is on high doses of stims.

    Every case is different, it is important to be aware of the potential for problems with stims and anxiety, but it can work out much better even so, as it did for us.
    And also a lesson from us - as MWM said, a combination of ADHD and anxiety, as well as some of the other things - further evaluation wouldn't hurt, to make sure you're not dealing with something like Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). The sooner you know, the sooner you can get that extra bit of more directed support you need. It took us another nine years to get difficult child 1 properly diagnosed.

  10. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Not having read any other replys, I can just tell you our situation. Not only was bonehead (that's what I call my ex-we were married at the time of difficult child's diagnosis though) against medications, but he was also against the concept that anything was wrong or different with "his son" (picture a puffed out cheast here).

    When it became clear to me, after a little over a year, that medications were going to be an option and that difficult child's doctor would recommend them, I "demanded" that bonehead attend the doctor appointment with me and difficult child. It seemed he was able to really hear and respect the words of difficult child's doctor. Of course, difficult child's therapist and discussed this before that appointment so that she could really make bonehead understand.

    That's what worked for us.

    Good luck.

  11. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    Medications are a difficult decision for parents. It seems that dads especially have issues with medications & feel that we are taking the "easy" way out.

    My case is different ~ the tweedles were on medications when they were placed with us. We had no choice but to find a good psychiatrist & evaluations completed to ensure that the right medications were being prescribed.

    My point is to have your difficult child thoroughly evaluated first. If you have confidence in your psychiatrist, drag your husband to the next appointment.

    husband & I have always felt that whatever it takes for kt & wm to function to the best of the capabilities. If it were frog legs, we'd have frog legs everyday.

    It's a very personal decision ~ it can be a long journey to find the right medication if medications are indicated.

    Good luck.
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Yes. My husband is a chiropractor and very against medications. Our son and our family relationship had to get to the point where it was descructive b4 he would give in and take his head out of the sand. We put our son on 15 mg of Adderal and saw immediate results.
    My only caution would be to not give it or any medication of that kind to a very small child. Your bio says your daughter is 8, so that's a good age. At that age she's in school and you can see her real personality develop.
    Research the benefit-to-risk ratio. The one good thing about most medications is that they wear off immediately. In the case of Adderal, it wears off in one day or less.
    The only anxiety medication I know anything about is Xanax, and do not now if it is for kids, but for adults it wears off in one day. (Wearing off can be the effects, or it can be whether there is any residue left in the urine.)
    Besides, tell your husband that if your child is too lethargic, you just don't give her the medication any more. There's nothing that says you HAVE to finish a scrip.
    Good luck.
    I know where you're coming from.
  13. missy7222

    missy7222 Guest

    Hi, thank you all so much for your replies. I will clarify a couple of things.

    We have a diagnosis of ODD and anxiety, there is a possibility of ADHD, but the anxiety could me mimicking the symptoms.

    The evaluation she had was with a pyschologist and was only for about 1 1/2 during which, she completed some of the rating scales with her, I left the appointment. with all of the rating scales, for myself and her teacher. After they were all filled out and completed, they scored them and that's how they came up with the diagnosis.

    Honestly, in my opinion, it just was not thorough enough. I beleive I am going to pursue further testing which will be much more comprehensive, I beleive the full evaluations are like 2 days. I definately do not want to push the medications until we are more clear on exactly what is going on. The psychiatric at school has brough up a possible mood disorder, maybe bipolar, but obviously this would involve much more comprehensive testing. In my eyes there is nothing wrong with further testing if it will give us a clearer picture.

    The thing is too that I know there is a corolation between the ODD, bipolar, etc. being genetic a lot of the times and also they've tied it to parents who have substance abuse problems. Well, my husband is definately undiagnosed something, not sure if its just ADD or what, but he has also struggled with alcohol for most of his adult life (he's 41), but he would never admit that he has anything! I think that's where some of the struggles come from, he doesn't want to admit that he might have something that has passed down.

    I don't know, its all just so much of a struggle every day. I guess I just have no choice but to just trudge on......:not_fair:

  14. MyFriendKita

    MyFriendKita Member

    My husband was also very against medications, and we didn't start them until difficult child was 15. We didn't medicate until our son was severely out of control, and we had pretty much run out of other options. husband was still against medications, but didn't have any other suggestions. Had we started medications earlier, our son might not have had as much trouble as he did.

    Our son became a different person once we found the right medications (that did take some trial and error). He was a joy to be around for the first time in a long time, and was working and going to school without any real issues. He turned into an almost easy child.

    After he turned 18, he stopped taking medications, and he turned back into Mr. Hyde. In the last few months, I talked him into going back on medications (actually I kind of blackmailed him, but the situation was getting severe again), and he is once again a lot more pleasant. He still has his moments, but not nearly like he was pre-medication. I expect him to continue to improve if he stays on the medication.

    husband, who was so against medications, and against any kind of mental health diagnosis, has done a complete 180. He recently told me difficult child can't live here unless he continues taking his medication. I'm not saying medications are the complete answer, and everyone says there is no magic pill, but I think if medications are needed, and you find the right medications, it really is almost like magic.

    I hope you're able to get your daughter whatever kind of help she needs.
  15. house of cards

    house of cards New Member

    I agree with all of the others but I wanted to add that you could look into the natural treatments/ alternative treatments such as fish oil, meletonin or supplements if things aren't too bad. That is what we first did and we were pleased with the results for awhile, after seeing the improvements with fish oil we were actually more receptive to the medications because after a while they weren't enough.
  16. tryinghard

    tryinghard New Member

    The hardest decision we made was to medicate. For us we realized that we had tried everything and our child struggled every day to function in society. I felt we owed it to him. Even with the side effects, if we did not try, he was going to end up having horrible self esteem, learn nothing, get in trouble all day long, have no friend...I know you get the picture!

    Medication has made a world of difference for my difficult child. We did have to go through a few before we found once that helped.

    Good luck
  17. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Missy, we tried (and continue to promote the use of) all the natural remedies, but couldn't get our difficult child to even focus long enough to quit grabbing things (he would even grab things in the grocery store and eat them) so I persuaded husband that we couldn't continue with-the natural remedies unless difficult child was able to comprehend the issue. He couldn't "get it" until he was on medications.
    It really helped. Sometimes, even difficult child reminds me that something is wheat/gluten ... :)
  18. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I tried everything I could think of with Miss KT before making the decision to medicate. She was having so much trouble at school, couldn't keep friends, and that was the last thing I hadn't tried. It made a world of difference in her behavior. And then she became a teenager...
  19. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Yes it is a hard decision, but I would be more concerned if you were saying, "I want to medicate my child!" look at every option, get an opinion that you feel confidant about... research.
    I fully agree with everyone.
    When your family ceases to function you need to look at other options.
  20. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Missy, I think your idea to get her thoroughly evaluated is a very good one. Also keep Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) in mind - it can also have a hereditary component (I can see it on both sides of our family, going back a few generations) and it can also look like a mix of ODD, ADHD, anxiety, Sensory Integration Disorder (SID), etc. A Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid also can be quite sociable, although inappropriate with it or inept in other ways. A need to do things in a certain way, or to have things just so, is also often seen in Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). The trouble is, it can look like bipolar (and other things) but the treatment is quite different. That's why a thorough evaluation is needed.

    With husband, I wouldn't discuss the possible hereditary component, unless HE suggests it. However, if Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) comes up, you can mention the theory that it is connected to high IQ in the family - I suspect husband would like that!