Is there still hope?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by bmb, Nov 23, 2007.

  1. bmb

    bmb New Member

    Hello everyone,

    This is my first post, I hope I've found the right place! I have a difficult child, female, 17 yrs old that has pushed me to my limits. She is actively defiant, more so than "ordinary" for an adolescent and I don't know where to turn next. Briefly, her father & I divorced when she was 5, no problems until she was around 11, then she became increasingly difficult with-whichever parent she was with at the time. We (XDH & I) tried having her live with him, she fought with-new wife & 1st diagnosis of Borderline (BPD) was made. Things went bad & she was arrested for DV & I had her move in with-her sister, brother and myself. Arrested 2x's for DV, counselor not helpful; switched to new therapist & rcv'd diagnosis of rapidly cycling dysthymic disorder.

    She is currently VERY verbally abusive to me, saying things far too vile to repeat, using every cuss word she can think of, saying things about me that are not true and generally has made a practice of totally demonizing me, including making up stories and accusing me of things that never happened. It's been awhile since I was in therapy, and I'm no longer as "up" on how to handle such stuff. This difficult child has worn me down & I don't know if she can be helped anymore now that she is 17.

    Any suggestions, input, advice??????
  2. Sara PA

    Sara PA New Member

    Oh, welcome to the club. When my son was unstable he called me names so untrue and so vile that it was all I could do to keep from bursting out laughing. That certainly wouldn't have gone over very well.

    Is your daughter taking any medication? Believe it or not, many of the medications our children are prescribed can actually make their behavior worse. It isn't uncommon.
  3. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    It will get better. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but one day. There is not much you can make a 17 year old do. They can leave your home, quit school, go to jail, but you are financially responsible for her until at least 18 (your state may say longer) But there are things you can do that may help:

    1. Employ do to get. You don't behave like a respectable member of the family, you don't get any extras. 3 hots and a cot is all you or the state has to supply. Clothes--salvation army. Tolitries---good will. Food--no favorites---whatever you cook and provide only.

    2. No special priviledges. You want to drive? Sorry, but until you are repsonsible in your actions, I will not sign. If she has a license turn it in to the DMV.

    3. No confrontations. Just agree with her. She says you are a b...., say "Thanks for letting me know that you don't like my attitude." But, don't argue back. I often used the phrase, I'm sorry you feel that way.

    4. If she gets violent, call the cops.

    It will get better or she will leave--either way, your life will improve.
  4. bmb

    bmb New Member

    Hello Sara,

    No, she is not on any medications, except for low dose thyroid.

    My family has a history of Mental Illness, most notably my sister who is totally & permanently disabled. Psychiatric medications used on her had horrible results, no benefit, and some permanent damage. About 10 yrs ago I was treated for anxiety/depression and also had adverse reactions. We have been very careful of not having difficult child medicated with-o being properly diagnosis'd. Her current diagnosis was made by a counselor, not a P-DR. Previous diagnosis of Borderline (BPD) led to her being prescribed risperdal, which was in my humble opinion incorrectly given. The DR was NOT a psychiatrist, but a GP that only saw her on one occassion for 20 minutes, made the diagnosis of Borderline (BPD) & prescribed medication with-o even weighing her or knowing anything about her history. Currently, she is not under a P-DR's direct care and therefore not on any medication.

    I am not opposed to medication's, just want to make sure she has a correct diagnosis first!

    It's not simply the name-calling; it's the fabricating she's doing that really gets to me. I've been reading the "Chandler Papers" that describe ODD, she really fits the picture, not what I wanted to learn............ :thumbsdown:

    It makes me so sad that she doesn't understand where this behavior will take her -- she's already lost certain opportunities by being so adversarial at school, she wanted to be a lawyer, but she first has to make it thru high school!

    Oh well, I need to go to sleep, been worrying about this too much & now I'm getting a headache... :hammer:

    G'nite & thanks for the reply!

  5. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi bmb, welcome.
    So sorry about the situation with-you and your daughter.
    I am glad you are moving slowly with-medications, especially given the history and scare of medication reactions with-your sister.
    I ditto the advice from Everywoman.
    Good luck. Wish I could be of more help.
  6. goldenguru

    goldenguru Active Member

    Welcome bmb~

    Get her to an adolescent psychiatrist. You need a thorough evaluation. It does sound like she needs to be on medications. Finding the right medications are vital. It may take some time - but well worth the effort.

    Given her family tree -it is entirely possible that she's having some mental health issues. Do what you can for her before she hits 18. It gets much more difficult once she can really thumb her nose at you.

    Sorry you're going through this.

    everywoman gives some great advise too. Take what you can from her suggestions.
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I agree with getting her to a Psychiatrist (with the MD). ODD rarely stands alone and probably describes all our kids at one time. Don't try to figure it out yourself. Also, could she be abusing illegal drugs and/or drinking a lot? My daughter was a great kid and flew out of control at twelve. Although I laughed at the time when it was suggested to me, she had started using drugs, and it got way worse before she finally decided to quit. She is almost twenty-four now, a health nut, and doing great, so there is hope. However, I'd try to find out what's wrong before your daughter turns eighteen. At this point, to be honest, she can decide to refuse to get help and nobody can force her to get any.
  8. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Just wanted to say welcome!

    I have the same exact problems with my 17yo, and he is medicated! So, I unfortunately do not have too much advice :frown:

    But I do know there is hope. Often these kids have a very rough teen years extending into their early twenties - and then things seem to finally pull together in their brain - and they are able to function better.

    Hang in are not alone.
  9. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    A common problem with our kids. They don't "get it" with-ease.

    With the way laws are written difficult children can refuse mental health care at early ages in many states. It can be difficult for parents to get their child needed treatment even when they are 12 - 16 yrs old.

    But, there's always hope.

    Welcome :smile: