I'm lost without any resources

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by artsyjessica, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. artsyjessica

    artsyjessica New Member

    Please help. My name is Jessica, I'm a 29 year old single mommy to two little boys. CT age 4.5 recently diagnosed with ODD, ADHD and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). I also have a 3 year old (GT) who is starting to emulate big brother's behaviors, but acts perfectly "normal" when brother is not around. A little background, CT was kicked out of preschool a year ago (at age 3) for agressive behavior towards other children. I took him to his peditrician who diagnosed him ADHD, but too young to medicate. Sent us on our way. I got him back into preschool and he was kicked out again just a couple of months ago for the same thing. He was already on thin ice with the school when he threw a toy at a teacher and split open her eye! They kicked him out on the spot, leaving me with no where to take him, and home from work while I figured it out. Being a single mom with no financial help from his father, this worked a hole in our bank account. I was able to find a stay at home lady to watch him, but it's not doing him any good gearing up for kindergarten this August. He EXTREMELY intelligent. I mean it... ready for Harvard. :) But... way behind socially and behaviorally. I couldn't get him an appointment to see a psychologist for 2 1/2 months! So, I had to get creative and get my boy some help. I ended up taking him to the emergency room and talking to the dr on call. They were able to see the immediate need and I've since gotten him reffered to a psychologist who reffered him to a psychiatrist. He now sees a psychologist once a week and a psychiatrist once a month for medication. He's on 1 mg of resperidone as well as depikene. He's about to start kinder, and I'm so affraid that he'll be kicked out with-in the first week. Getting him and IEP or 540 is near impossible in our school district. I know it's because they do not want to set aside the funding in their already stretched budget. To make matters worse, the district just fired all of the aids and is raising class sizes. Just the thought of him in all-day kinder with 25-28 kids, with no aid (and no nap) scares me. He'll never make it. He couldn't even sit for his psychologist for 5 mins before getting up at 2 1/2 mins and hitting me! I need some encouragement and possible state resources?
  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    This isn't an exact science, but I'm seeing a lot of red flags for high functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Has anyone even suggested he be tested? Has he seen a neuropsychologist for a full evaluation? Been tested for allergies?
    I thought every state required quiet/nap time in kindergarten (not that it will solve this, but it might be one thing you don't need to worry over).
    *hugs* and welcome aboard hon. Others will be along with more in-depth questions to help guide you. Have you read The Explosive Child by Ross Greene yet?
  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Ditch the ODD label - he's way to young for that one... and its a bit of a 'catch-all' diagnosis - not really useful.

    Is there any way you can get access to an Occupational Therapist (OT) (occupational therapist)? If so, take him for an Occupational Therapist (OT) evaluation - especially for sensory issues, but on as many other fronts as they think might be justified by your observations.
    While you're at it, if you can, get him into for a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) (speech-language pathologist) evaluation as well - again, whole spectrum... from language processing issues, to auditory processing problems (some of which lead to sensory overload).

    What is his sleep pattern like? Does he crash out "before his head hits the pillow"? Sleeps long hours, but still has dark circles? If so, there may also be sleep issues - which can be a stand-alone problem, OR part of certain diagnosis, OR the result of dealing with non-diagnosed problems...

    Occupational Therapist (OT) and Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) are usually fairly fast to get into...

    No matter what, school is going to need documentation on what is currently known, so that at least they can't just "kick him out".

    You've got your hands full!
    Hang in there...
    (tossing you a knot!)
  4. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi Jessica! Welcome to the forums...I'm a little pressed for time, but I did a quick search for free parent advocates in Banning Ca. Here's what I've come up with:

    Team of Advocates for Special Kids (TASK) - Riverside County - [TABLE]
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    I would give them a call about the IEP issue.

    I would also agree that a full neuropsychologist exam would be a great start. There's more than meets the eye here. Sensory issues could definately be a portion of things too, so I second the idea of an Occupational Therapy evaluation.

    Hold on kiddo! Lots of experience here on this site and some really strong shoulders to "cyber lean on!"

  5. artsyjessica

    artsyjessica New Member

    I'll be sure to ask his psychiatric for a Occupational Therapist (OT) refferal (it all goes by refferals), thank you. My aunt is actually a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) in San Diego. She evaluated him, and said that the's actually "off the charts" in a good way. Way advanced for his age, and should be placed in a dual-emersion program (classes taught in english and spanish). I'm afriad though that he would be able to sit long enough to take it in, and I can't help him at home with the Spanish aspect.

    sleep is great. He runs all day and fights bed time a bit, but once I get him down, he's out in a few mins. I did, however have to put black-out blinds in his room because if he can see his toys, he'll get up and play for hours (all the while I think he's sleeping). I also had to put a door knob guard on his door because he will get up 10 times to "tell me something". He sleeps soundly and is very refreshed in the morning. He is, however, used to a daily nap after lunch. I'll have to ween him off of that before Kinder starts in august.
  6. artsyjessica

    artsyjessica New Member

    thank you for that info. I called and left a message this morning. :0)
  7. tictoc

    tictoc New Member

    As soon as the school reopens in August, send a certified letter asking for an evaluation to determine eligibility for an IEP. The school district has 60 days from receiving your letter to complete the evaluation. You need to get this request in before there is a problem and (hopefully) to get him qualified for an IEP as soon as possible. Also, call the school office the day it reopens to request a meeting with the teacher BEFORE classes start. She needs to know that your son has special needs that you are still trying to define and that you are requesting an evaluation by the school district. That *should* give you some breathing room when it comes to how she deals with difficult behaviors.

    And, don't let anyone tell you that he can't get sp ed services because he is too smart. He doesn't have to do poorly academically to get help at school.

    I, too, live in CA and the state budget is hurting all of our kids. Sp ed took a big hit in our district and class sizes are going up for everyone. I understand your concerns about class size and the lack of aides. It is appalling.
  8. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    ^^^ Exactly. It took a while, but it was finally determined that my Kiddo is an Aspie, and she's gifted. Seems a high percentage of the Aspies I've come to know are gifted - and in retrospect I think a lot of my other gifted classmates are also Aspies.
  9. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) - ask you Aunt if she tested his auditory discrimination... the ability to "turn down" background noise and/or focus on one particular sound in a noisy environment (teacher's voice in a classroom, for example). This does not (usually) affect language processing - they understand what is being said, etc. - but they actually do not HEAR well in a noisy environment. This can lead to sensory overload (from the noise) and/or fatigue from trying to figure out what is happening and what they are supposed to be doing. Hopefully, she's already tested for that as well - but with the transitino to school, this one could be a major "new" factor... nice if you can know ahead of time.
  10. seriously

    seriously New Member

    If your son is truly in the gifted range of intelligence, you may find the information at this site (Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted) helpful. The smarter the child the greater the emotional and behavioral difficulties they often experience. This sounds like it goes beyond that and it's good that you're getting him some help. But, if he is gifted, particularly if he has very high IQ (150+) then the behaviors that were diagnosed as ADD may actually be because he is gifted.

    Here are some links for you to explore in your "free" time that might help you figure this out. I would also bring this question up to the psychologist. The thing is, unless the psychologist has experience working with and assessing the highly gifted he/she may not have the experience needed to figure this out either.



    If this information strikes a chord for you - I suggest you visit some other websites including Hoagies Gifted. org; the Davidson Institute and Hollingworth . org - a center for highly gifted children (usually defined as children with IQ's of 140+).

    All that aside, the highly gifted must still be held to account for their behavior, even as very young children. The difference is that at least some of the explanation for their behaviors can be explained by their sheer frustration at trying to "slow" themselves down to match the "normal" world.

    Good luck. It's tough to be a single mom at all - let alone to difficult kids. I hope you have support from family and friends to help you cope. And it sounds like you are doing a great job. Pat yourself on the back.

    Last edited: Jul 14, 2011
  11. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    And its important to know which one it is - or if it is BOTH (my bro. was that way) - because it makes a big difference in what range of approaches might work... if you're gifted, the "schlep" (bro's term) they try and dish up for you is completely unappetizing... so you just turn off, and go find your own stimulating stuff (read... trouble).

    Having said that... in a lot of ways, it applies to all of us. I couldn't stand history, bored out of my mind, had trouble even getting stuff handed in - but would have loved a chance to challenge advanced English (not available back then), just couldn't get enough of language studies!

    Dog training tip that works for kids too... You pick which behaviors you want to reinforce... but the dog picks what has value as a reinforcement. Doesn't matter how much you paid for those dog treats - if the dog doesn't think its worth much, that's what you will get back. I've always used "treats" to reinforce... until we ended up with a dog who was hard to train... until we found out that what he REALLY loved was to chase a ball. THAT was his "high-value" reinforcer. AH-HA. You pull on the leash going to the park, and you don't get to carry the ball.... etc.

    Except, with kids... there's a much broader range of reinforcers to investigate. And the brigher the kid... the broader the range. But you HAVE to find out what THEY put a high value on. Taking away TV privs doesn't do much if its an "oh well" sort of activity.

    I'm going to have to check up on some of those links of Seriously's, too... for more ideas!
  12. Confused

    Confused Guest

    Hi artsyjessica,
    I didn't read anyone else's replies here but I am sure they have helped you. You just have to keep looking up support groups where you live,(being able to physically get together with other parents in the same or similar situation) as well as resources. I am actually looking for one where I live or may even start one if I cant find one! Since you already have him on medications and weekly appts, this will help. The schools are hurting and it is very sad that they got rid of aids and raising the class sizes. What about a Special Education class if he can not make it in regular kinder? I know no one wants their kids in Special Education, but in some cases, that might help. Depending on the school programs, they wouldn't be able to just "kick him out as easy". I know, I was in Special Education for refusing to go to school starting in the fourth grade up until 8th. I was in there with some real violent or just disruptive kids,and it took alot for them to get kicked out or put into alternative school. I believe when I went it was called BIC AND BAC, unsure if they now only have Special Education. Good luck.
  13. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Moms And Dads that are looking for support...

    Make sure that you check in your states for "Parent to Parent". It's a government funded program that can help you understand rules and regs., help you find valuable resources as well as holding support groups. If there isn't one nearby, they may be able to help you either find a support group OR give you assistance in starting one.

  14. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! Another thing that I used with my kids were storybooks from Sandbox learning. They take information that you provide about the individual child (hair/eye color, likes, dislikes, etc.) and incorporate it into a social skills book about whatever subject you want/need to address.

    They have a free sample book that you can personalize and print so that you can try it out on your child to see if it catches their interest. The link is:


    It helped with 2 out of 3 of my older kids.

  15. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Has your son taught himself to read? Does he have a great rote memory, like a sponge? Any particular interests that really amuse him, such as dinosaurs, computers, memorizing names of states? Does he like to mimic television shows he has seen (verbatim)? Does he know how to have a give-and-take conversation (I realize he is young, but since he is so bright, maybe?)

    How does he play with toys or doesn't he or does he take them apart more than play with them (and put them back together) or does he line them up? Does he like to touch everything?

    What types of things make him hit or spit? Does he get upset if his routine is changed? Can he adapt well to switching from one activity to another or does this set him off?

    Are there any psychiatric problems on either side of his genetic family tree? This means Dad, even though Dad is not a part of his life.

    Welcome :) I am on the side of getting a neuropsychologist to see if anything was missed. I'm also thinking of Aspergers. Often these kids are very bright, but socially lost and they get frustrated so easily that they often act out, although this can be helped a lot.