I believe I am raising a Psychopath at 6 years old

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by InsaneCdn, Sep 25, 2011.

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  1. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Hi, and welcome.
    Sorry you needed to find us... but glad you did. You have come to a safe place.

    I don't have experience with your situation - others will understand more than me in dealing with this type of child, and thus have more specific advice.

    What I can offer - is some generic advice...
    1) It is always dangerous to get a list of "symptoms" and compare to your own child. We went through that cycle, and I swear there were at least a dozen serious dxes that were "highly likely". In reality? NOT. Where we ended up was... totally different than those major "heart-stopper" dxes that were my first cut at research.

    2) Watch out for "awfulizing" or "catastrophizing". Common twist in thinking, but it doesn't help. You are exactly where you are, right now - he is what he is. Anything that has not actually happened yet... should just be "N/A" or "unknown". Don't go making assumptions about the future.

    3) Certain dxes are "major". Not sure who did your son's dxes or when, but one that you listed was a major red flag for me: attachment disorder. This alone could account for much of the behavior - if the diagnosis is accurate. There may be other explanations for the behavior. But assuming that the attachment disorder "sticks"... how do you get past it? With a kid who's never been attached, I don't know but there are supposed to be ways. (I've had to re-attach a kid that got lost along the way - so I understand a little about the havoc and chaos that comes as a result...)

    Can you give us a little more history? Sounds like you have 3 sons - all with the same father? Sounds like the father is not living with you and not very involved... do you have a significant other? who else lives with you? Any family history (on either side) of various disorders and challenges?

    Others will be along with loads more questions... and advice.

    Just wanted you to know that you ARE safe here. And nobody here will hand you the "bad parent" label!

    By the way, good choice to not use real names. You'll see the term difficult child used... that's short-hand for our "difficult child" - or you'll see difficult child 1 and difficult child 2 etc. - to differentiate. Some people have code-names for their kids ... Jumper, Eyeore, Kanga, etc.
  2. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Hello. Thank you for sharing your story and my heart does go out to you. You are facing something very difficult.
    I suppose the first thing to say is that, from an outside perspective, it seems clear it is not your son's fault that he is acting this way. At six years old, he cannot really be called a pyschopath in the way of an adult, I don't suppose. At the same time, something is clearly not right - there is some disorder, it would seem, some problem at the basis of this. Please tell us more about what psychiatric evaluations you have had done and what care he is now under. Also what medications does he take?
    I personally believe that your son can be helped to attach to you all and to stop many of these distressing behaviours. But you need skilled input to help you achieve that. I came across a site on the net of an organisation dedicated to helping families with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) children - some of whose behaviour seemed as disturbed and aggressive as you boy's - and it documented impressive results. Only thing is it is very expensive... I would like to have some more specific and detailed information to give you. I don't think drugs alone are the answer.
    Life is incredibly painful for your son. It is also incredibly painful for your family having to deal with his behaviour. I hope people will be along with more help and advice.
  3. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Wow. First off, I am very suprised your 6-year old would be diagnosis'd with conduct disorder - it's rare to see that diagnosis in someone under 16. The ODD, ok, I'll by that but usually ODD is used to describe a laundry list of defiant type behaviors that usually are attributed to undiagnosed issues. The attachment disorder is a tad questionable, although I am no expert. Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is something we usually see with kids who were either abused or abandoned as babies.

    Your son's issues are very concerning. I would worry about the safey of my other children. What kind of doctor diagnosed your son? How long was your son observed/seen before the dxs? Exactly what medication/medications is your son taking? Did the doctor(s) ever observe these disturbing behaviors in your son?

    Were I you, I would keep a video camera, or at the very least an audio recorder, handy at all times. Often docs can't get the real picture until they get the real picture! It's very possible your son may need some type of input facility for complete diagnostic testing and medication trials.

    There will be others along that have more experience with the attachment issues and some thoughts on the more disturbing behaviors.

    I am very glad that you have found your way here to us. You will find support without judgement.

  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi there.

    I am on board with InsaneCanadian (what a great handle, isn't it?) He is too young to label such serious names such as Conduct Disorder. I am thinking that something else may be causing his behavior. Has he ever seen a neuropsychologist? If not, I'd sign up for an appointment to see one right away. They will test his exensively to see his strengths and weaknesses in all areas plus test him for stuff like ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and sensory issues to find out WHY he gets so angry and frustrated and why he always has. I have a few questions that could help us.

    Does he live with both parents or did he suffer the loss of a caregiver early in his life (such a Dad?) What are your family dynamics? Mom, Dad, Son, another son/daughter? Are there an y psychiatric problems on his genetic family tree. This includes Dad even if your son never saw him because he is 50% his DNA and that matters. Were you able to get good prenatal care before he was born? Sensitive question: Did you drink while pregnant?

    Regardless, his behaviors are very dangerous for such a young boy. I would watch him with his siblings all the time. Although it is very rare, I am wondering if he is psychotic...believing things happened that never did (as in killing his brother). He is a very sick young child. How does he do at school?

    Welcome to the board. Glad to have you, although sorry you have to be here.
  5. keista

    keista New Member

    Welcome! Everyone so far has asked good questions and made good points about the dxes. What little I know about Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), this behavior sounds about right. HOWEVER, Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is generally caused by an adult - the adult in the child's life did not give the necessary attention. What you describe sounds more like he REJECTED your attention from birth. I DO believe this. My situation is not the same but similar. Professionals have asked me when I noticed symptoms with DD1 and I tell them since birth. Some have rolled their eyes in disbelief, but I know she WAS different since birth. Actually she was different in utero, but if I say that, they assume I am "projecting".

    :consoling: Sweetie, how much pain and sadness do you think it will cause your oldest if difficult child actually hurts the cat? I know it's such a rock and a hard place, but until things get better, you MUST protect the innocents - the cat and your two other boys.

    Is difficult child in therapy? Are the other boys? Are you? Your entire family needs treatment and coping skills of various kinds. You have those first dxes - right or wrong, doesn't really matter - and they call for treatment. I hope that has started. by the way, at what age was he diagnosed and who did the dxing?

    LittleDudesMom suggested he may initially need inpatient treatment, and I certainly agree. He certainly displays a high level of danger - more so to others than himself.

    I'm so sorry that your child has brought you here, but you could not have found a better, more supportive group of ppl to help guide you through your journey. :notalone:
  6. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Sending supportive hugs your way. How was he diagnosis'd? Do you have or have you had a fully trained medical professional who has given you those identications? This has nothing to do with your parenting. In fact it sounds like you have done an outstanding job trying to nurture him.

    Since he clearly is a danger to himself and others I, too, wonder if an inpatient evaluation is called for. Truthfully I believe that now is the time to get him identified so if there is help available it can be implemented before he gets older and bigger. Protection of your family unit has to be the first priority, in my humble opinion. I'm sorry you are in such a painful place. DDD
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    You just described my son Travis at that age except substitute projectile vomiting for the constipation and diarrhea. Other than the GI symptoms, such behavior is commonly seen in the autistic spectrum.

    Again classic for autistic behaviors. Much of what you've told us goes along with autism. I'm not saying this is the diagnosis, we can't diagnosis. Making strange sounds and eye rolling are called tics. I believe there is a spot here on the board where you can read about the autism spectrum. Some people are more severely affected than others, and no child will have the exact same symptoms which is why there is a long list. Some of his other behaviors might be due to social or sensory issues or you could be looking at more than one diagnosis being the cause of the problems you're seeing.

    Anything unusual about his pregnancy or birth?

    I'm not sure if anyone asked how he did with developmental milestones. Was he delayed in anything? (not that he has to be, it just can indicate areas to look at)

    Does he play consistently with his peers, or does he seem to play "near" his peers but yet not quite interacting with them as a child normally would?

    It's not just you, and no you're NOT a bad mother. difficult children (what we call our kids with special needs) are often extremely difficult to parent.

    Travis was a nightmare as an infant. I discovered, much to my horror, how a mother could be driven to hurt their child just to shut them up and stop the non stop screaming. Thankfully, I had the presence of mind, regardless of 3 solid months of sleep deprivation (Travis only slept 10 mins at a time a couple of times a day), to go to work to get a break from him. Even with a strong maternal bond, it was very hard to deal with 24/7. As a young toddler/young child he kept me running non stop. He could hold it together to some degree at school yet fall apart at home. So the vast majority of the time his teachers only saw glimpses of his behavior, not enough to give a real picture until the 4th grade. And that teacher, which I now regret as she truly was trying to help, I blasted like an idiot.

    I went through so many pediatricians and specialists it wasn't funny...seriously I couldn't begin to remember them all. He didn't start getting accurate dxes until the age of 13 when I started finding docs that knew what they were doing, and I learned to write Parent Reports that documented both his medical history and his behaviors.

    Now that Travis is an adult, I can look back on those years with fondness and remember mostly just the good funny things. Posts like yours brings back all the things I now don't think about anymore. Because when I was down in the trenches of it where you are now? I used to literally count the number of years/days I had until he turned 18 just to get me through each day, especially a bad day.

    I'm so glad you found us. Welcome to the family.

  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I do know what its like to fight the system (school and medical) non-stop, with no results... until finally... SOMEONE got to the bottom of enough stuff.

    1) Repeat after me: I am not a bad parent.
    Tell yourself that every time you see yourself in the mirror. Because its true.

    2) Current dxes and medications are not getting you anywhere. To me, this screams "re-evalutation" time. Look at things like Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), and anything else in that direction, for starters. These kids can be extreme. But the treatment approaches are totally different.

    Start by looking up the Site Resources - there's a good sample parent report there that will help you pull together your child's history - which you will need for the re-evaluation.

    Then... start fighting for a comprehensive evaluation.

    Meanwhile - has he ever been evaluated by an Occupational Therapist (OT)? If not, might want to look at that also - for sensory issues, in particular, but if you're there anyway might as well evaluate motor skills too. Occupational Therapist (OT) report will not provide any dxes, but does provide highly useful info for other professionals - and OTs have therapies that can help.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2011
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I don't think he can be diagnosed as any one thing at this time. And this is NOT your fault, even though professionals love to blame the parents.

    I still think your best bet is an evaluation. And,please, please, please...rehome your cat. The cat has to be terrified and your oldest son has to know that it's not safe for him.

    (((Hugs))) and good luck.
  10. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    My husband was my rock. Although I learned early on that actual parenting of the children was better left up to me with him being my back up. He was either far too overboard or far too easy, he could never find a middle ground. I am from another state, so my family was 8 hrs away. husband's family, well there is only his bro, and his parents were much older. So, for the most part, it was just me and husband.

    I found the board when Travis was 13. Member here and at another board I found based in neurology helped me get his cerebral palsy, tourettes, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) diagnosis. I've been on the board every since daily. It's a rare thing for me to miss a day. The board is "family" now, and even my kids think of many of the members that way. lol

    Travis is not your typical autistic kid in some ways. He enjoys socializing with adults and tends to do pretty well at it for the most part which mucked up his diagnosis for a while, it's his own age range he has real trouble with. Very young kids think he's great because he was always developmentally years behind his peers. Even at a young age though, Travis could socialize ok for short periods of time, so if watched during those times one would not think it was an issue unless you had a trained eye. Because his "socializing" was as much actually playing around the kids than interacting with them. His vocabulary was always astounding and he spoke early, in sentences, so don't let that throw you. His language deficits are in other areas such as the written word and getting words to organize correctly in his brain to get them onto paper.

    I raised my kids with a fairly strict routine, being a stay at home mom it made it simpler. I learned to watch for sensory triggers which could either send him literally into a rage, climbing the walls, or to withdraw into himself. Oddly enough, the latter was the most scary of the three, even though the rages were so bad I'd have to put him into a psychiatric hold (I was/am trained for it) to prevent him from hurting himself or others, and the whole climbing the walls thing just could drive you nuts. I learned quickly to avoid those triggers, even with no one to teach me. A cause and effect sort of thing. The routine let him know what to expect, which for an autistic child is usually a huge deal as the unknown causes high anxiety, and helped keep him calm.

    Behaviors waxed and wained as he grew older, some vanished......such as the head banging, and new ones appeared such as an increase in both verbal and non verbal tics (those really drove me nuts and still do).

    I was never so relieved the day I found this board full of knowledgeable caring members. While it made me sad to see that there were so many other parents going through what I was, it also was so wonderful to have people to talk to who actually could get what I was saying, with the added bonus of the wealth of information here.

    You're son's diagnosis is a rather heavy one for such a young age. I'm not saying it's wrong, just that docs tend to hold off on those types of dxes until a child is older.

    Have you had a neuropsychiatric evaluation done? If not, you might want to consider it as it covers a wide range of areas other than just behavior, mental. It might be able to give you something to work with.

    And with a diagnosis as strong as the one he's been given, I'd get a 2nd opinion. Honestly? I'm the queen of 2nd, 3rd, opinions. Dxing mental illness is not like normal medicine, it's more based on experience and education with an emphasis on experience as to what the doctor has dealt with. Travis didn't receive his diagnosis of autism until he was 14, because docs he saw up until that point had no real life experience with the disorder and his behaviors didn't click with them, yet the one he saw at 14 taught pediatric neurology at the medical school and specialized in both tourettes and autism.....and he couldn't believe the others kept missing the boat. He's right, it's rather obvious. lol

    As an adult, Travis is still here at 25. He's in college. He's slowly catching up to his peers. He can manage adult responsibility pretty well if he has to. Social is still a huge thing, but then it always will be. He's come a very long way since he was a child. But I swear I have to laugh at that whole counting until he was 18 thing because that sure didn't happen. lol
  11. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Occupational Therapist (OT) = occupational therapist.
    Notice how there is a dotted underline under things like Occupational Therapist (OT) and ADHD in the posts?
    If you "hoover" your mouse pointer over the underlined term, the meaning will pop up.
    (took me a LONG time on the board before somebody told me about it... !)
  12. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member


    Are you in the USA or Canada? If you are in the USA, the school cannot just refuse to let him attend the whole school day.
  13. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Welcome, eatpraytravel.
    I agree with-so many others here that I'm not sure what else to say, except that I wholeheartedly agree that your son needs to see a neuropsychologist for an evaluation.
    Also, your post brought back many painful memories for me. My son wasn't quite as charming as yours; more into being by himself and avoiding people, while preferring "things." But he often acted like he didn't care about others or behaved in a deliberately mean manner. (Especially toward me.)
    My son screamed constantly, too. I do not think your son was screaming while he was a baby because he hated you. I think he was in pain and uncomfortable in his own body. You said he had digestive issues and that explains a lot. Also, he had zero coping skills or patience and ruining your nipples may have been his way to get more food. (When my brother was a baby, my mom switched from a bottle to a sipper cup when he was 5 mo's old. It took him 0.5 seconds to yank the top off of the sipper and gulp the milk as it poured over his face. And that's a "normal" baby, lol!)

    Have you told him that you are thinking about giving the cat away to someone else because he is so mean to it? What is his reaction? I would seriously consider rehoming the cat, and agree with- (who was it, ddd? Keista?) who said, how awful will his brother feel toward your difficult child if the cat is seriously and permanently harmed? Maybe you could find a friend to keep the cat and have your other son visit. Complicated, but maybe do-able?

    I agree with-the others here that he is too young to be diagnosed with-Conduct Disorder. No way, no how. Plus, CD has to come from somewhere--something neurological, chemical, induced by physical trauma, molestation, whatever. So it's really a garbage bag term. I would ignore it as best you can and move on to something more clinical and scientific.

    Hound Dog has given you some great ideas about watching your son and looking for sensory triggers and stimulation that can send him into a rage. with-my son, (who has been diagnosed with-Asperger's) his ears turn red, and he starts to tap his foot or clink a utensil on the table. I have a choice of redirecting him if we are in a public place, or of walking away if we are home. Usually, if I leave the room, he calms down. However, when he was little, he would rage for hrs, and destroy his room. His longest rage was 4 hrs.

    Again, welcome!
  14. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Wow, I can certainly can relate to some of the things you said. I agree with HoundDog. I too have a son who seems to deliberately do things to provoke others and hurt others including a cat we had (we dont have him anymore, he did live a long life-19 years and I sent him away to be protected). He too banged his head (He was in foster care so his foster mom told me this before i adopted him)...for him it turned out to be pain from a brain mass but was at the time treated behaviorally. He is also loud and nothing has helped with that but outside visual and verbal cues to quiet down. He too has a diagnosis of reactive attachment disorder-insecure type but he has attached to me though I am still targeted more than others since I have to be the bad guy most of the time.

    Since he is adopted I had done a lot of research prior to adopting at all and talked to experts on line and in person about Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). I have to agree with a poster above who said many of the symptoms are the same as what you are seeing. I disagree that it would not be that because Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is caused by an adult. What I have now learned being on several sites (like adopt-china site which though it catered to kids from China, it ended up becomming a great resource for anyone dealing with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD)) is that research shows that Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) can be a result of anything that impacts a parenting bond in the first few years of life including pain (you said your son cried and cried...just because the dr.s couldn't find anything doesn't mean he wasn't experiencing some kind of painful issue--maybe he had severe sensory issues and couldn't process the world well). My son banged his head and experienced pain that the "adults" did not intend to ignore but the cycle of, baby is upset--parent comforts him, was broken. Even when a parent knows the child is in discomfort like with preemies or sick babies, sometimes there is nothing they can physically do, they can't even talk to or hold some babies due to the need for low sensory input in order to keep them alive. So if he does have Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) it may not be anything you did to him in terms of being a not attached parent. Kids who do not show/cannot show attachment often have parents who feel less attached and even angry because the very nature of attachment comes from connecting through being able to soothe, help, laugh with or just make sweet eye contact with the child.

    I had many times when I thought, wow, do I even love this child? And in my heart, when he hurts- I hurt. I will do anything for him. I deeply love him. But sometimes I have to protect my heart and just stay in my head to do the right thing for him. It can feel like I am not as good of a mom. It also happens with kids who have severe seizures and kids with autism or neurological disorders where they can't control their motor responses for whatever reason. I guess I am just saying, I agree with many of the posters above. It can feel so deliberate when a child does the most horrendous things and says awful things that seem very purposeful. Just knowing that things hurt others does not mean they understand it and the impact it has on the world. It also doesn't mean they can stop themselves from doing what they know is wrong (IF they know it). But it is too soon (the frontal lobes continue to develop into the twenties, we now have scientific proof of this) to say a child is or is not able to attach and have any kind of sympathy or empathy. Even if not it is too soon to say it will end up in a destructive kind of lifestyle. If you do decide to pursue the Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) diagnosis that I believe you said he already has, make sure you only see a specialist in Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). I have met with/interviewed therapists for us that break all of the rules for working with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) kids. They are not to have private sessions with a therapist because they need to bond with the parent. They can fool an untrained therapist into thinking they are sweet by acting sweet and well behaved to them and they may never show their true hand in front of them so people will say it is parenting issues instead of a neurological issue. We have been told to do play therapy....it would never work, he doesn't play imaginatively...but TheraPlay...is specifically designed to work on the attachment between the primary caregivers and the child to help them learn to attach. That helped us tremendously.

    Lots of books out there to help point the way...most related to adoption but you will see there are links and references to other causes of attachment issues. And I have read that PET scans show similarities between Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) and AUTISM. So it seems it is truly neurological. There are other kinds of therapy that work specifically and even centers that help with this but they are not in all cities so you may have to search. if you have access it may be worth a look since they have the expertise to work with kids who start fires, hurt animals, have that "evil eye" look you mentioned (oh I know that one well!---like no one is home and they have lost their ever loving minds). Regardless, who else would have true skill to at least try to help? They are not shocked by what you are posting here. It was actually reassuring to me to learn more about this and I truly can say my son is attached to me now. We have tons of issues (esp. because he is also autistic and has the brain injury) but he genuinely hugs (not just to get something, or to get close enough to hurt me) and tells me he loves me now. It is a long road but we can't give up. by the way, even if they or we dont feel attached--whether some or all of the time, we can still parent our kids well. There are different kinds of ways to show love. in my humble opinion. Sorry so long, I just feel so strongly because I know that pain and fear.
  15. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Nothing new to add but I wanted to add in my welcome. ((((hugs))))
  16. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    I agree with buddy and wanted to let you know no one will judge you badly here. You have found a very safe place. Also, my son was discharged from an Residential Treatment Center (RTC) that took kids as young as 6. If that is something you'd want to look into. And, the school can not just tell you that they can't handle your son and send him home. In the US if a kid with an IEP is suspended for 10 days the school has to find a new placement for him. It does sound like your son needs a new placement for school. They have to try to educate him. (And frankly, you need the break.)

    good luck and welcome.:hugs:
  17. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    As a baby, those looks most likely came from the GI issues, which can be terribly painful. Babies are all about cause and effect. So although he was hungry and you fed him, it also most likely caused him a great deal of pain. That pain could've have been associated with you, even though you really weren't the cause, and so he fought you and bit you during feedings. Makes sense.

    I'd take him for a full check up by a gastroenterologist, even if the constipation / diarrhea issue has at this time seemed to be resolved. Just to make sure it truly has been resolved and there are no underlying issues that need to be addressed. Those issues alone can cause a normal child to take meanness to a whole new level, many children in pain tend to lash out in anger at what they don't understand. My granddaughter Aubrey has some bad GI issues. I always know when it's causing her trouble, her entire personality changes.

    I know how daunting it can be to go for 2nd, 3rd opinions or to see new specialist to make sure something physical hasn't been missed......There are so many times you just feel like you're spinning your wheels and no one is listening. I did it for 14 yrs. It was worth it in the end.

    Raising a difficult child is tremendously stressful. Many parents found having their own counselor or therapist to talk to helps. Still, even while being warrior mom's for our kids, we have to learn and remember to take care of ourselves too. We're mom's, we're not super women. We need breaks too. A night out with the girls, a movie with husband or a friend, a long walk to just be alone in peace, even locking the bedroom door and reading a good book for a while. Such moments help us deal and cope with the rest, even if it's only 5-10 minutes at a time here and there.

  18. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Now, hold on ept, don't get too swept up :) It was not a bad idea you coming here and you will get support and advice. There are quite a few single parents here (of which I am one) and people who go through really incredible situations, sometimes with minimal support. So you are really not alone.
    But it IS hard on your own, particularly with two other youngsters. Things can really get intense and dramatic - I know... Also your boy is really feeding off something, it seems like you are firmly caught up in a negative cycle whereby his bad behaviour causes you (all too understandably) to react negatively, which in turn fuels his bad behaviour. been there done that, even if in not as an extreme a way as with your boy. But I was definitely dealing with a verbally abusive, physically aggressive, very angry and out of control pre-schooler a while back... I armed myself with knowledge and techniques and things are better now. Not heaven, not wrinkle-free but MUCH more manageable than they were. So I really do believe there is hope even in the worst cases.

    Buy or get hold of "The Explosive Child".
    Start reading about attachment disorder - this is actually what set me on the right road, even though I don't think my child "has" it. But our bonding was definitely impaired and we were definitely engaged in a vicious cycle of action and reaction... Without in ANY way blaming you, because your feelings are so undertandable and you have been dealing alone with intolerable stress, you have detached from your child and I do believe that the path to healing in the relationship lies in some form of re-attachment, reclaiming of the lost love between you. Is there any, any hope of you seeing a counsellor or therapist who specialises in attachment problems.

    Please do not give up finding help and support for yourself and your boy. Many hugs, from one who understands a little :)
  19. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Actually, many of us have very little support. I'm fortunate enough to have husband - but that is the sum total of support. Ever. And its only recently that he's really on-side with what is happening and why. There are others around here in similar situations, including running 100% solo, as far as support goes. That's partly why we're here.

    I know we sound like a broken record, sometimes. But... so many of us spent years and years and years fighting medical systems and school systems and never getting any answers - and mostly getting "working against". Including family that works against. But... somehow, somewhere, we ended up with answers. For example - one of the conditions my difficult child has, the tests for it were not known in our area until a couple of years ago. When he should have had the test, there was no test to give. But he was literally being driven over the edge into insanity - some form of psychosis - by these problems.

    There are things known NOW that were not known when your son was a baby. On top of that, you may have had less-than-thorough doctors at some point - most of us have hit that, too. And its NOT FAIR. Nor is it right. But... it is what our kids get, far too often.

    Don't give up.
  20. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I'm going to just accept that you have a very difficult child who may be hard to diagnose and treat. His behavior is certainly challenging right now. I doubt he had the ability to hate anyone as an infant, but he may have had serious sensory issues that made him not want to be held. Here's a little "it happened to me story" lol. My mom could not hold and feed me at the same time. I screamed bloody murder when she held me. She had to prop my bottle (she did not nurse). I didn't hate her. I just didn't like being touched/hugged...I had serious sensory issues which have improved a little bit over time, but I'm 58 now and still have some (although I'm good with hugs now!).

    Back to what should you do: If social services has been at your door (and I rarely recommend this) maybe you should call them and ask for help. They do have services and they really don't like to break up families. The services they can provide, including respite, are free. You NEED respite! Now...does he have an IEP for school? Things would go better in school if he did have one...show the school that you know there is a problem and want to help. This way you are a caring mother, see? You are not in denial. This is a good thing. Also, have him see a private neuropsychologist. You can find them in children's and university hospitals and, in most cases, if you are, say, on Medicaid, those two types of hospitals will take it.

    I think he shows some signs of autism. I do not in my humble opinion think that all of his behaviors are due to that though. He may have multiple things going on. Do you know if sperm donor has any mental illness anywhere on his family tree? Do you? (I just got home and didn't read all the answering posts...not even my own last post...lol).

    Although Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) could be the cause, I would not jump to blame it all on Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is supposed to be diagnosed ONLY if they can not find anything else (I have adopted kids...one had Severe Reactive Attachment Disorder) and am well versed in Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). Autism/Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) seem very similar.

    For now, since he is so young, focus on making your life more bearable. Take any break you can any time you can, even if that isn't often. ANd, for heaven sakes, lose the therapists and psychologists for now! They are taught theory, often blaming upbringing or parenting when a child is not of the norm. THIS IS CRUEL! Again, going back to myself, I was a very sad and erratic child with many phobias. When I first started seeing therapists, I learned that they were all about blaming my parents. Well, Mom and Dad were hardly stellar parents, but I knew that wasn't it...I knew I'd been born the way I was. And I told them so. And I got so sick of hearing that it had to be my parent's fault that I started sticking to psychiatrists who were more medically inclined. I'm sorry. Some kids ARE born with very difficult challenges and temperaments that even the best parent can't fix. Sometimes even the best doctor can't fix it. PLEASE don't let anyone lay a guilt trip on you. If you were a horrible parent ALL of your kids would be like him and they aren't.

    Sorry for the long post. You really struck a chord in me...I feel your despair and your desperation. Although I really can't help much, I hope I can help you see that he is not the way he is because of you. Be good to yourself! I really didn't like my parents all that much, but I knew for a fact that what was wrong with me had always been wrong with me and that they had nothing to do with it, other than maybe throwing me some bad genes, which was again not their faults.

    Please keep us updated.
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