I’m drowning here

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by dgrace, Apr 9, 2018.

  1. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    My 17 year old daughter is struggling. IEP in place. Barely makes it to school. Every day is another excuse why she can’t go. Diagnosed with depression and anxiety. Medication has been somewhat helpful over the past year. Glued to the computer and phone. Therapy weekly and a psychiatrist as part of the program. I’m a single mom and I work 6 days a week. I’m scared for her future and what’s going to happen when she turns 18. She doesn’t understand why I care so much. She thinks she’ll just “figure it out” moving forward. The manipulation is insane. Arguing when she doesn’t get what she wants. Sneaking out. Ran away before this past hospitalization. I’ve coddled her, I admit. She’s always been shy so I speak for her. Since I’ve taken a step back and pushed for her to speak up for herself it’s completely backfired. She has internalized more so. The people closest to her, she treats like garbage and uses. Everyone else she has no use for. No real friends. Maintains relationships with people on gaming sites who live overseas. Fiercely protective of these people. I’m out of my element. I’m at a crossroads in my life. In a relationship with someone I see a future with. We haven’t moved in together yet. If we moved in together I think it would doom the relationship. I can’t see her living on the couch while we both work and her doing nothing. Looking back when she was younger I never thought things would have ended up like this. Any advice would be wonderful.
  2. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    Welcome to this site. A couple of questions? Is she attending a regular school or an alternative school? She may need more counceling support at school which an alternative school would provide. If she is online when she should be at school i would lock up the computers so that staying home is not rewarded by fun time with overseas friends. Do you see a therapist as well? It might give you some support on how to move forward.
  3. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet


    Do you have any other children? Is her father in the picture? What about other family?

    She's at a critical age - that is my thinking.

    I agree to shut down the computer. Don't be afraid to get her "mad". Trust me. Take her phone away.

    If she won't go to school she doesn't get these toys that YOU pay for.

    Read my signature. Ya we didn't want to get ours "mad" either and let's just say hindsight is 20/20.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  4. BloodiedButUnbowed

    BloodiedButUnbowed Active Member

    Hi there,

    Your daughter has a similar profile to my oldest stepson (I have two, both mentally ill and in bad shape). In my stepson's case, we also have to contend with anger issues which have escalated to violence on more than one occasion. We also disagree with his custodial parent (wife's ex) as to parenting this child which is the biggest issue of all in our situation. Our son was evaluated for an IEP but was found ineligible. He had a 504 plan which was worthless and never enforced. In the end he left his traditional high school to enroll in a for-profit online high school which feeds directly into a for profit online college. He was supposed to graduate this year. He will not. He does very little schoolwork and is making slow progress. He is satisfied with a part time job at a fast food restaurant. He refuses to speak with, or see, either my wife or myself and we know zero about his life at the present time.

    Based on my experience, I would say: get on the same page with her father if you are not already, assuming he is in the picture; if you are truly on your own and don't have to worry about her dad, then I would ask for an IEP meeting to discuss your concerns. Her poor attendance is definitely a reason for an IEP meeting and possibly a request to place her at an alternative school. In my district the alternative school sends a bus to the student's door and if they refuse to leave the house school staff enters the home and gets them out. Parents sign consent for this when enrolling in the alternative school.

    This may be a good first step.

    How does your new significant other get along with your daughter? I had a good relationship with both of my stepsons.
  5. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    Thank you. No, her father is not in the picture. He lives states away and does not keep in touch
  6. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    She attends a regular high school but only goes a half day and tutors in 3 classes. I also see a therapist.
  7. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    We have an IEP right now. Even with everyone bending over backwards to help accommodate her she still can't seem to make it to school. I took her phone and computer away yesterday when she didn't go to school. I will be taking them away each day that she misses moving forward. Guess who went to school today?

    My boyfriend and her get along ok. I'd have to say that he probably doesn't care too much for her although he's never say it to me.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  8. BloodiedButUnbowed

    BloodiedButUnbowed Active Member

    The fact that she went to school in response to your taking the electronics is actually a really good sign that you'll be able to rein her in. No consequences ever had any impact on my DS (Difficult Stepson, my nickname for the oldest). And good on you for putting your foot down!

    Keep us posted, we are a tight community here and you'll find a lot of kindred spirits and support. Glad to hear you are having some success getting her to meet your expectations re: school.
  9. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    It's such a relief to know I'm not alone.
  10. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    Are her anxiety and depression related to any situations that have happened at school, such as bullying or being deserted by friends she was close to?
  11. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I am wondering if she is on the autism spectrum. Has she ever had a neurologist psychological evaluation? Who diagnosed her?
  12. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    Not to my knowledge. I've gone over it and over it in my head.. How and why did this start? She insists she's not been bullied or sexually abused. I find it hard to separate typical "teen" behavior with symptoms of her anxiety and depression. Her therapist is going to start exposure therapy with her. My daughter is very reluctant. Her way of dealing with most things is avoidance. If I push her to do things for herself (like order a meal) she'd rather just go hungry.
  13. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    She has not ever been evaluated by a neurologist. Over the past year she's seen 3 or 4 psychiatrists. Her therapist is now leaning more toward severe social anxiety.
  14. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Please....have you checked her for autism? She has tons of red flags for that. People with autism all have huge anxiety, can't socialize well, are prone to depression, and are afraid of change, sensitive to sensory overload and very reclusive.

    It's worth a try. Autism can be treated.
  15. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    I honestly hadn't considered that but I'm going to look into it. I've tried everything so far and I'll keep trying.
  16. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    I realize I posted this in the substance abuse section. Oops. I guess it doesn't matter. I did find some homemade pot pipes in her room over the summer. Got rid of those and to my knowledge she hasn't smoked or anything since. They drug tested her at her outpatient program. I don't believe she's on anything other than her prescriptions. That being said, nothing would surprise me at this point. I do have home drug tests. If I feel she is on anything I will use them.
  17. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Look into it. Autistic people, especially girls are often missed. My son has it and it took 11 years to get him diagnosed right. I was told he was bipolar! He is not!

    I took him to a neuropsycologist (a psychologist with extra training in the brain) and he was tested for ten hours and finally diagnosed right. He is 24 now and on his own with some community services. He has come FAR since his diagnosis. He works. He can socialize betterr.

    You have nothing to lose by having her evaluated for this. I would definitely use a neuropsychologist though. Many psychiatrists don't diagnose autism right. You can find neuropsychologists in University clinics and children's hospitals.

    Good luck!!
  18. dgrace

    dgrace New Member

    I’m going to look into this. Thank you. I never would have thought to look into this but it’s an excellent suggestion. Her next appointment with her psychiatrist is Friday. I’ll ask him to point me in the right direction
  19. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    If he tells you not to go, ignore him. Ours told us it was bipolar, he was sure. He was also wrong! :)
  20. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    If you are in the USA what about
    Job Corps. It is a free, federal, residential job training program. There are sites throughout the USA. Many of the trainings are excellent. It is well supervised and they work with disabled and troubled youth. This could be a win win for everybody.