Just to say hello


New Member
I came across this site today and would like to say hello.
I have 5 kids. My 14yo son is the one that I am trying to learn
to help. He has issues and I have been trying for years to get
some help for us. Everyone just seems to blow me off and just basically
say he is just being stubborn or defiant. Behaviors are escalating and now
people are starting to pay more attention.
I am just feeling very lost and not sure of where to go. I was looking
for support groups or chat rooms and found this site. I am hoping to talk to
others and learn from others suggestions and opinions.
I look forward to talking to other parents soon!
Diane :smile:


Active Member
Welcome, you might want to tell us some more about your son. Most people here have a signature with info about our kids and us so that we can keep each other straight. There are alot of wonderful people on this site that are very knowledgable about many issues.
Glad you found us! It is a shame that they wait for big problems, before they act. At 14, it is important to get him into intensive and comprehensive treatment quickly. He is at a pivotal age.

Wiped Out

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Welcome to a fellow Wisconsinite! I'm glad you found us-this is a soft place to land. The people here are very supportive-it's been a lifesaver for me. Has he seen any specialists at this point? Again welcome, you are not alone. Hugs.


New Member
Thanks, I wasnt sure how to go about things so bear with me!!
My son is 14. He is on Abilify to help with aggression and mood swings. And about 6 weeks ago he started Zoloft. I think he is depressed and he has some anxiety issues. He is such a complicated kid to try to describe.
Ever since he was a little boy he has had issues with aggression and being so crabby. We used to say how could such a little boy have so much to be angry at. Looking back now, it just proves to me that he has always had some problems and everyone just blew them off. He was diagnosed with ADHD years ago. They talked of ODD and possibly Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) but never did much about them. He has had a number of adhd medications, but currently is not taking anything for that. The dr. we saw said that sometimes the adhd medications can contribute to the aggression and anger so he recommended stopping them.
To kind of go into what brought me here....
Last week my son was taken from school by the police and taken to a hospital 3 hours away. I was not notified until 2 hours after he was taken. (I didnt know they could do that.) They said he was poking himself with a pen and his hand was bleeding. They said he was a threat to himself. He was put on a 72 hour hold. I had a ton of different opinions and suggestions and thoughts this past week. What a horrible confusing week we had. I was so scared as to what was going to happen with him. He was so sad to be away from us and he just CRIED and CRIED every time I talked with him. Anyway... we got to go get him from the hospital yesterday. We had to meet with a family therapist. She said that they could find nothing wrong with him other than oppositional defiant. They said he was making bad choices and was being very stubborn. She said they were releasing him because they felt there was nothing they could help him with. That he would not open up and talk to them so he may as well go home. When they brought Kyle into the room I noticed a big mark on his arm... about the size of a half dollar. I asked what had happened and he said that he had picked the skin off his arm. I looked at the therapist. I was not understanding why she was telling me that nothing is wrong with him. They took him to this hospital because he poked his hand with a pen,... that warranted him being in a psychiatric ward, but while there he picked his skin off and now they are saying that isnt a big deal. She said if they tell him not to that he will just do it more. I am a bit confused about that whole issue. She said that the majority of the kids do it for attention. I just do not believe my son is picking his skin off for attention. Maybe I am being naive. Maybe I am just in denial.
So as of yesterday they are now saying he is just oppositional defiant and adhd.

I am not sure as to where to go now. The school does not want him to come back to the classes he was in. They said they are worried about him but I feel they are just tired of dealing with a difficult kid. He has been labeled as a delinquent and that is how they view him. They mentioned putting him in a EBD class. I believe that is for emotionally and behaviorally disabled kids. He is going to have to repeat 8th grade too. That was just brought up last Tuesday also. He is failing all his classes.
I guess I am just feel really lost and scared today. I am not sure who to go to for help. Our human services in home therapy team has not been much help. I am reading a book called The Explosive Child. I am not getting many answers yet, but I am at least feeling not so alone. I am finding it very interesting.

Any suggestions where to start? Did anyone else have a hard time getting the "experts" to listen to them? Does anyone else on here have a child that
picks their skin or anything like that?

Can I ask please what some of the abbreviations mean.... difficult child? easy child?

Thank you for taking the time to read this.



Welcome to our world. I'm glad you found us but sorry you need to.

There is a FAQ thread on the main page. It explains all the abbreviations and policies of this site.

You will receive a lot of responses tomorrow. Weekends are slow. You will also get advice, some of it conflicting. We are just parents but many of us have been dealing with these types of issues for a long time, so we have opinions. Take what you can use and leave the rest. Is your difficult child (problem child) your first child? If so, that makes it harder for you to be as assertive as you need to be.

The first suggestion that is usually made is READ The Explosive Child which you are already doing.

The second is get your child evaluated at a major teaching hospital with a very good psychiatric unit. The evaluation should be multidisciplinary. There IS something wrong with your child. His behavior has been going on for a long time and your sense that it is not normal is correct in my opinion. Accurate diagnosis and medications along with therapeutic treatment can help. However, you are running out of time: you have a very narrow window to intervene before your difficult child is beyond your control. At 18, there is nothing you will be able to do to force treatment. Now you can and in my opinion, you should.

Third, you need to go to the section of the board called SpEd 101 and find out how to keep your child in school and get the special education he obviously needs. The school sent him to a phospital. They are labeling him "delinquent" because there is and exclusion in Special Education law that allows schools to not serve "socially maladjusted" (delinquent) students. Do not let anyone call him either of those terms. Correct them by saying he has been diagnosis'd with ADHD (which is covered by sp ed law) and other emotional problems are are being investigated.

I am a moderator of Sp Ed 101 which is where we collect information and answer questions about how to get services. There is a "getting started" thread in the Archives of SpEd 101. I think you should take a look at it.

You must learn to be you child's first and best advocate for both mental health services and education. If you don't, no one else will because no one else knows and loves him as you do.

Again, welcome to our world.

Martie :warrior:

Sara PA

New Member
Starting or increasing self harming behavior shortly after starting an antidepressant -- Zoloft -- should be a major red flag for an adverse reaction to the medication.


Diane, welcome. I'm glad you found us.

Martie has given you excellent advice about the steps to take to help your son. I hope you follow her advice to the letter because she knows what she's talking about.

Sara also makes an excellent point about Zoloft. My own son (difficult child 1) had a prolonged intense manic reaction to Zoloft in the fall of 2005. He was initially prescribed Zoloft for anxiety, but after 3 weeks became alternately angry, aggressive, depressed and suicidal. In nightly rages, he trashed our house, and my husband sustained bruised ribs from restraining him. We pulled him off Zoloft immediately, but it took several months of mood stabilizers (Depakote and then Lamictal) to even his moods out. I strongly believe your son is not exhibiting this behavior as an attention-seeking ploy (and any therapist who makes that comment is in the wrong line of work). From my own experience, I have to believe the Zoloft is making your son worse, not better.

I hope you are able to find a good board-certified child psychiatrist to evaluate your son and get him on the right treatment. by the way, my son's first diagnosis at age 9 was ADHD and anxiety. He does have ADHD, but that's not his biggest problem. The mood issues far outweigh any other challenge. It has taken a very good psychiatrist to manage his medications and see him for therapy week in and week out. Only with good treatment over the last year were we able to make any progress at all. Life in our household is not perfect, but the trajectory is upward, and we're in a far better place than we were right after Zoloft.

I wish you luck on your journey.

timer lady

Queen of Hearts
Wanted to pop in & welcome you. I don't have much to offer at this point - the others have brought up where I might start with your difficult child.

There is a lot of information here - take what you applies to you & your difficult child, leave the rest.

Again welcome. :warrior:


New Member
Hello and welcome. You will get much guidance and advice from this board. As stated we are all parents of hard to raise children. We make suggestions only. The folks here have helped me through many a difficult time. I think you will feel relieved that you have found us. -RM
Hi Diane,

I don't have too much advice at this time - but I wanted to welcome you to the group. You will find much support and advice here. We can't diagnose or prescibe medications - but we CAN tell you about our experiences with difficult children. We come from all kinds of different circumstances, but we all have a common thread - in that we want to help our difficult, troubled kids.

Welcome to the "family"!



Well-Known Member
Hi there. I'm in Wisconsin too. What part of the state are you in? I know that, where I live, the allegedly best place to get evaluated and treated is the University of Wisconsin Hospitals in Madison. My son is on the autism spectrum and was misdiagnosed repeatedly. I think the right professional and diagnosis is really important, especially with teens. My boy is 13. Has your son ever seen a neuropsychologist for that sort of intensive evaluation? Did he have any strange behaviors or delays as a toddler or younger child? Trouble with schoolwork? Social cluelessness? Any mood disorders or substance abuse on the family tree (either side?) My son was really an angry kid until he was correctly diagnosed and put on the right interventions. Zoloft CAN make kids worse. My son got very strange on Prozac after only one pill. That was the only pill I ever gave him. He also got aggressive on stimulants.


New Member
Welcome Whatsnext!!!!!!
Just wanted to say Hi and tell you that you have found a very special place here.

Melissa *