Ins pd 100% of the psychiatric hospital!!!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TerryJ2, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Woo hoo!
    That's the best news I've heard in a long time.

    We picked up difficult child after lunch today. First, we talked to the soc wkr. He was American and had no accent. :)

    He said difficult child's notable characteristics are that he is extremely impulsive, very stubborn, and that his intelligence was way up there but his maturity level was waaaaay behind. He said that tended to "fool" people, as difficult child would try to change the subject, and even suggest interpretations for the other kids who were having difficulty expressing themselves. (This was during a group session). At one point, the soc wkr mentioned the argumentativeness and stubborness to difficult child, who argued. Heh heh. The soc wkr responded, "How many people have told you that you'd make a good lawyer?"
    "Oh, lots."
    "Point taken." ;)

    So, they only wrote down ADHD and ODD, but said that they couldn't rule out bipolar. As I mentioned in other notes, they said he's too young and also, that he was able to hold it in for long periods, especially at school. They are used to working with-kids who are so off the charts that they make difficult child look almost angelic. So, we wait. :( But I was prepared for that.

    They gave him clonidine, no klonapin. I found this online:
    A synthetic drug, C9H9Cl2N3, used in the treatment of hypertension, the prevention of migraine headaches, and the management of Tourette's syndrome and opiate withdrawal.
    An alpha2 agonist that inhibits the release of noradrenaline from post-ganglionic sympathetic nerves. This drug is used clinically to treat hypertension and migraine. Clonidine has also been used by athletes to stimulate hGH (human growth hormone) secretion artificially, thus avoiding the direct use of hGH which is on the World Anti-Doping Agency's 2005 Prohibited List.

    Very odd. Seems like klonipin would have been a better choice. I'm going to call difficult child's pediatrician tomorrow. I know he's not the prescriber, but I want to know how this works on kids.

    I took a lot of notes.

    But mostly, I have to wait for their notes because they tend to hand-write interviews and testing, and staff types it up. The notes probably won't be ready until Mon. This is the same thing I went through for my cousin in NYC and I never did get her records. (It was not a psychiatric hospital, just a regular hospital.) I WILL get these notes. They are much better organized and friendlier than the staff in NY.

    They did not do the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) testing that I had hoped so I will move forward with-my plan to have difficult child tested by the spectrum specialist dr. in a few wks.

    difficult child was his usual stubborn, argumentative self when we picked him up. He hugged us, then begged and argued to go straight home, even though we told him husband had to go back to work immediately and my car was parked in his lot. I tuned him out by pretending he was a barking dog. It worked! ;)

    Once home, argued about the dinner I was making. He wanted homemade rice crust pizza. He finally compromised by asking if I would make it after I made the regular dinner. I said yes, knowing that he would be too full, and would also forget by that time. I was right. :)

    husband and I sat down and talked to him about the new rules. We only got half way through the list and difficult child became overwhelmed and started to argue and cry. One of the things that got him the most was that we wanted the dog out of his room, because he scratches and bumps into things (he's blind--the dog, not difficult child) and keeps difficult child awake. difficult child said the new scrip knocks him out so he would sleep through all that. He begged and husband gave in. (I'm going to check right now and leave the door open so the dog can wander out if he wants.) We tried to impress upon difficult child that this is NOT a punishment, it is to help him sleep.

    We also told him there would be no overnights with-his friends until his sleep patterns were established. He balked at that, and worried about weekends, Thanksgiving and Christmas. We told him to slow down and look at the list of guidelines and rules, and at the top it said, "September." We repeated it and said it would be updated ea mo just for that kind of thing and he finally settled down.

    I have to say it was a lot easier to talk to difficult child with-both husband and I there, presenting a united front.

    I am going out of town on Tues to visit my Dad in MN. He has Alzheimer's. It's going to be bo-rrrring. But I can handle boring. I suspect several of you in the throes of difficult children raging will want to accompany me. :)

    I'll update the profile below after I talk to the pediatrician.

    P.S. He's still awake! But he's got the lights out and he's sleepy.
  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Hi Terry, sounds like a plan!

    Clonidine is a blood-pressure medication that is used off-label as both a sleep medication and an ADHD medication. For ADHD, it helps more with impulsivity and hyperactivity than with attentional issues. My son took it for a while when he was having trouble falling asleep. It seemed to help, but we have since moved on to Seroquel, which helps with more of my son's issues. According to my son's psychiatrist, Clonidine can cause a hung-over feeling in the morning, which can lead to irritability.

    Hope all goes well now that your difficult child is home.
  3. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    That is fantastic insurance news - we had a $50.00 deductible and I was beyond happy about that one also.

    So, difficult child forgot about you taking him to purchase a toy when discharged (I think I remember that as one of his requests while hospitalized?).

    Boy, that constant arguing - I hope the Manipulative Child book has given you some ideas on that.

    The house rules are an excellent idea. I can see his point about the dog in the bed room. Some boys just need a dog but like you said, it is not working. My difficult child had our puppy sleep with him for awhile until puppy decided not to sleep all night - or easy child stopped gathering the puppy when she got home at nights.

    It is good that you set a time line for the rules to be reviewed and updated as needed. Maybe when difficult child starts to argue, get him to put it in writing - ask him to put his case in writing explaining why he thinks the rule was set up, why he doesn't think he should have it as a rule, and what he thinks should replace it. We know his verbal arguing skills are there, let's start working on his written skills.

    "You know what, difficult child? You argue too much! I don't feel you are hearing me. Please put your complaints in writing. You may also write how you would like to resolve the problem but know that I am the judge and can overrule your idea."

    May not help change a thing but wouldn't it be peaceful for a few minutes while he put his case into writing? Have him research when needed (cost of something, time of lights out if he needs to get up at a certain time - if you must have 10 hrs of sleep and be up at 7:00, what time do you go to bed, etc.)

    Welcome home difficult child! Terry, good luck with the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) testing.
  4. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I actually take Clonidine in a very low dose as a patch for my hot flashes. It seems to be working so far, but I have only been on it two weeks.

    I'm surprised that it is supposed to help with sleep. I have been having a terrible time sleeping through the night the past 4 - 5 days, and now I wonder if that might be a part of the problem. I wake up every 45 minutes or so.
  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Awesome on the insurance!! Ours has a $100 copay for any hospital stay. But we are thrilled with that - much lower than it could be.

    I am glad that you and husband were able to present a united front (had a misspelling there and almost wrote untied front - NOT the same thing, LOL). The united front is crucial to making this work.

    I think putting the arguments in writing is a great idea. Not only will he be occupied while writing things down, you will have something that may entertain you when he is older. (My parents used to threaten to keep things to show my kids, LOL)

    Love and Logic has a technique that I found very helpful for handling arguing children. It is called the broken record. You have a phrase and just repeat it calmly throughout the argument. It would be worth looking at, maybe just browsing the book in the bookstore or library if you don't have it. I am not sure if it is on the Love and Logic website (

    I am glad he is home and you are getting things under control somewhat. Keep working to get that testing. I think the "too young to give a diagnosis" routine is a bunch of bs meant to get parents to ignore the fact that they were not doing all that they should (as in setting up the discharge plan and aftercare).

    Many hugs,

  6. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thanks Smallworld. I was wondering. You saved me a ph call. :)

    Andy, he did ask in the pkng lot but we both said NO right away and he stopped. :) I even said, "A toy for getting out of the hospital? I don't THINK so. Going home is your present."
    Good idea to get his complaints in writing, too. :)

    Witz, you take it for hot flashes? Whew. Wish I'd known that last yr. I think I'm through the worst of it.

    Susie, I have 2 of those books and haven't had time to read them. I'm still workiing my way through The Manipulative Child. :)

    Yeah, who knows about the bs stuff. Sigh. At least he was safe for a wk and I got a break.
  7. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Terry, we're not doctors here so if you have concerns about the medications your son is taking, you should absolutely check in with your son's doctors.
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I know, Smallworld. I just know that it can be prescribed off label and couldn't find the entire "off label" list on line. I was being lazy. :)
  9. luvmyottb

    luvmyottb Guest

    Great news about the insurance! I just got a bill for $1100 yesterday for testing which the dr. office swore would be paid for by insurance. Good for you!

    I love the suggestion of put the argument in writing!! LOL;) I am using it this afternoon when my difficult child comes home from school.

    Good luck to you Terry and I hope his adjustment back home goes smoothly for your family.
  10. Christy

    Christy New Member

    Hi Terry

    Great news about the insurance. We were also fortunate in that area, ours covered all but $100 and my son has medical assistance (due to his special needs adoption status) and that picked up the deductable. Prescription medication is another area in which we are thankful to have the MA. Out of pocket with-o insurance, difficult child's medications would total close to $1200/month. With the blue cross only, we would owe about $350/month but the MA picks up the remainder of this. I really don't know how we'd manage without good insurance!

    My son was on clonidine for awhile. At first, it seemed like a great fit. It really calmed him down but after a few weeks, he became very irritable and deprressed. Watch out for these things but it is a helpful medication for many. There are several threads on here with clonidine as the title. You may want to do a search.

    Good luck seeking further testing and I hope you are able to obtain the notes from the psychiatric hospital. Good thinking on your part. When my difficult child was discharged, I got chicken scratch on a single sheet of paper!

    It's great that you and husband presented the new rules together--no opprotunity for triangulation!

  11. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    I just found out that my ins did too for Matt's latest stay~
    How unusual is that?
    I just about fell out.
  12. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Terry, it sounds like things went well.
    Great that you and husband presented a united front, and I really like Andy's idea of having difficult child put his arguments in writing.

    As for the insurance, woo hoo! That's great.

    Hope things go well when you visit your Dad. Enjoy the boring time. We don't get too many of those, do we?

  13. OpenWindow

    OpenWindow Active Member

    I like the idea of limiting the rules to September. I was thinking of trying a behavior chart with my difficult child and I'm going to copy that idea.

    You sound optimistic! I'm glad your husband is on the same page with you, it makes life so much easier for everyone.

    My difficult child took clonidine to help him sleep. It was also supposed to help with some of his ADHD symptoms. He was on a low dose, and while it helped keep him calm and kept his impulses under control, it kept him extremely tired. I think he was just too tired to be impulsive! He'd fall asleep by 6 or 7 every evening and was still really hard to wake up in the morning. It was a nice respite for me, but we decided to stop it because we didn't think he should just sleep his life away. We also had to keep a close eye on his blood pressure, because he has low blood pressure. The nurse at school checked it a few days a week. I hope it works for your son.

    Enjoy the boring time... what I would give for boring right now.

  14. Fantastic news about the insurance!

    I like the idea of having the rules listed as for September and re-evaluating them monthly. I will have to remember that.
  15. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Way To Go, Steely! Great about Matt's ins!

    I read something on another post about a face chart. Reminds me ... I saw that difficult child had drawn his own at the psychiatric hospital but I don't know what happened to it.

    difficult child said something nice yesterday. My elderly cousin in NYC sent him a back-to-school check for $25. As fate would have it, he needed a guitar and tuner for his new music class. The tuner was $26. So I didn't even show him the check, just told him that she had sent it for his new tuner.
    He said, "Isn't she 87 or something?"
    I said, "82 I think."
    "Well, shouldn't she be keeping that money for herself?"

    Ahhh, empathy and consideration. So rare. So lovely.
  16. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Terry - what a sweet comment on difficult child's part about the elderly cousin.
  17. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Yeah for the insurance. Ours too has paid completely every time he has been in the hospital. I get worried every time we renegotiate our contract that they'll make us go with an HMO that won't pay. Luckily, we have Medicaid for difficult child so if that did happen we'd be o.k.

    My difficult child takes Clonidine. He takes it for sleep at night (.1mg) and to help with his ADHD symptoms during the day (.05 twice a day). For him it has been a great medication. Last spring when he was in the hospital they were going to try another medication-the one day he was off the Clonidine the staff couldn't believe the difference (not for the better) in difficult child. He was back on the next day!
  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Interesting, Sharon. I suspect b4 this is all over, we'll be trying other medications, as well.