Lost in the world of ODD

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by doula4u, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. doula4u

    doula4u New Member

    Hey everyone, I am new here so I am not quite sure where to direct questions or really where I am supposed to start but my 11 year old has SEVERE ODD. Its at a point where I dont know if I can have her in my house anymore. it sounds so awful but she is only getting worse despite all of the extra help we are giving and getting for her. Her academics have improved so much over the last 3 years, but the attitude and argueing is only gettting worse. Is there a place somewhere in north america that provides temporary residential rehabilitational therapy? I have a 2 1/2 year old that is constantly exposed to her irrational yelling and screaming and not that i fear for his safety... as she is a loving sister, but the constant exposure to disharmony is affecting us all and surley is not good for him. as far as family is concerned, well there isnt much option, we have family but none that are equipped to deal with her. my husband are almost at divorce point becasue we are all under so much stress and him not being her bio-dad it is harder for him to be sympathetic/ empathetic after years of providing for a child that has such a sence of entitlement and absolutley refuses to take responsibility for any of her actions. I live in alberta canada but would be more than willing to travel if there is a chance to fix the problem. any suggestions.... ps FOSTER CARE IS NOT AN OPTION SO DONT BOTHER BRINGING IT UP!
  2. keista

    keista New Member

    Welcome. You fund the right place for support and guidance.

    First things first. Does she have an official diagnosis (diagnosis) ODD is usually a behavior pattern, and most often the result of another primary condition. Who made the diagnosis?

    To specifically answer your question, your best bet would be to search on the internet for keywords like Residential Treatment Center, Children's Psychiatric Hospital, Inpatient Psychiatric Treatment - Children.

    Sorry, I have to bring it up. If there is an option for THERAPEUTIC foster care, you may want to look into that. A child with serious problems could not just be placed in a regular home. Personally, I think I'd prefer a setting where my child got more individualized help than in a large group environment where you don't really know what all the other kids issues are and if they are indeed being managed effectively. Just something to think about.
  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    To Canada, from Canada...


    You're going to find that the parent-to-parent advice around here is pretty good, but the resources available in Canada don't work the same way at all - it took me a while to really figure that out.

    In order to help the rest of us help you, can you give us more information about your child? Who did the diagnosis (diagnosis)? when? has other testing been done since? for what? any other diagnosis? medications?

    Is school affected by her behavior? if so, would they support you with an Ed psychiatric report? If not, you'll need to pursue Child and Youth Services or whatever they call the mental health department there. Sometimes you can self-refer, other places you need the family doctor to refer.

    On top of the psychiatric report, you'll also want to talk about screening for learning disabilities - some can be subtle but really drag a kid down. While you're at it, have you checked hearing? what about auditory processing? (not the same thing... you can have normal hearing, but abnormally process what you hear - or you can have trouble filtering out background noise, or "tuning in" to the sound that needs your focus...) There can be sensory issues, which the psychiatric reports will NOT touch - we found it useful to pay for a private Occupational Therapist (OT) screening while we were waiting to get in to mental health.

    Around here, ODD is not really treated as a diagnosis... even the tdocs and psychiatrists we deal with here consider it to be mostly a "secondary" diagnosis - that is, something else is going on, and because that pressure point isn't being dealt with (more likely, multiple points!), the kid can't cope, and it becomes a behavior issue... they can take it out on others (ODD, violence, etc.), or on themselves (depression, suicide, anxiety, etc.) and so on...

    Given that the behavior is getting worse... and that the load at school is growing fairly fast by now... I'd be guessing that SOMETHING is going off the rails in the process of getting an education. Somehow, you still have to deal with the behavior, but you need to get to the bottom of it. In our experience, you have to really get "bad" before anyone takes you seriously. You sound like that's about where you're at now... so you have a big enough "squeek" in your "wheel" to start getting some action. It just won't come fast enough.

    Ways to queue-jump in Canada... Yes, there are some.
    - Occupational Therapist (OT) is almost impossible to get access to for school-aged kids, so you're totally welcome to pay for this to be done.
    - Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) (speech-language pathologist) resources are usually in-school - but if the school won't back you for a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) screening, then you will be at liberty to get one done privately - some public SLPs do private work on the side, with the permission of the "system" - it gives them exposure to cases outside their narrow assignments and keeps them more on their toes.
    - Psychology/psychiatry - these resources are available privately if you have... the money to pay for them, or a generous extended health care plan - the plans don't usually cover on-going treatment, but will frequently cover assessments and other such short-term needs.
    - If she is at immediate risk of causing harm to herself or to another, you can take her to (or depending on the urgency, involve emergency services to assist e.g. police, EMS) the nearest childrens' psychiatric ward.
    - (shouldn't say this 'cause this is Canada, but...) If you have any connections in the health care system, this is the time to start calling... they can sometimes tell you WHO the best entry-point people are in the system, and/or may know a friend of a friend who works for (or who is) a key diagnostician... etc. Sometimes, it makes a difference. In my experience, sometimes the difference is just that someone else in the medical community supports your cause - even if it isn't their area.

    For the record, therapeutic foster care is almost impossible to get here - unless through the juvenile courts and/or parent(s) in the legal-system maze. And what little is available, isn't necessarily "qualified" to deal with these kids - at least, what little we've been exposed to it. So you probably don't have that option either.

    Not as familiar with 3rd-party residential programs - not so many of those here in Canada.

    Hang in there. There will be answers. Meanwhile, find ways to look after yourself, and your relationship with husband. Sometimes sanity lies in the little things - but you do need to take time for yourself.

    Others may have more ideas about immediate coping strategies... here's hoping they have something creative for you to try!

    p.s. Start a "parent report" - see site resources. You're going to need all the documentation you can get, and this tells you the kinds of stuff to start collecting, and what to do with it all!
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2011
  4. doula4u

    doula4u New Member

    first i guess, is that she was diagnosed by the school psychologist 2 years ago. at that time i had to demand it becasue she was 2 years behind in curiculum. since then she is being held to pretty much the same standard of the rest of her class. shes about 50- 70 % average in her grades now... big improvment! We are currently working with a program called COMPASS by the YWCA. there have been no medications as i am still on a waiting list for a pediatrician(since october).

    there are no options for therapuetic foster care, but someone before just told me to give her to the system... i dont believe this would help only make her worse. I am a family preservation advocate so child services is the last place i would go for help. she is not at risk of hurting herself or anyone else... she has gotten into a few fights at school but shes not a violent person by nature. i guess i am frustrated because i hear so many positive things from the teachers about her improvements but at home shes worse than ever so im a bit confused. she has spent so much of her childhood grounded and it doesnt seem to work at all so does one just stop giving punishments for poor behaviour? ( pick your battles i have been told)

    My hubby has completely given up and im the only one left to find her help. My daughter seems to blame him for not giving her enough.... her room isnt big enough, she doesnt have enough clothes/ toys ect. meanwhile she has more now then ever before and really it is an excess of stuff. her sence of entiitlement is rediculous, she feels like we should just give her whatever she wants and not ask questions. then when i ask her to put her laundry away its like i just asked her to cut off her arm! I know this is mostly due to the fact that my mother has always undermined me in my attempts to parent, by this I mean while i was getting an education, my mother was careing for my daughter ( we all lived together) and we did not agree on how things should be done. i say go brush your teeth she says dont be so hard on her! shes still doing this even though we havent lived together for 3 years. it always a battle inthis house. there is rearely a day that passes that my girl just does the things she is supposed to without starting a fight, nor does she ever actually complete a task. She only has 3 basic duties, homework, clean room once a week and clean her bathroom once a week. apearently that is too much to expect. yet i get concerned about her inthe respect of hoarding, becasue she keeps such silly things, and i dont want o just go into her room and clean it for her as that may intensify that problem. so i try to get her to go through it and be reasonable about weather it is important and needs to be kept. but her room is always a disaster. i guess im just ranting now but these things are all part of her core persoality and i fear cannot be changed. i really really want her to be successful in life and it kills me to think that she might not even be able to hold a job when shes older let alone go to college and get a job she likes. teen years are hitting and i think we might be introuble if something is not done soon.
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Totally agree with your take on not just "turning her over to the system" - unless she is already totally destroyed (and she isn't yet), that option will be more destructive than trying to find answers within the family setting.

    More questions... hope you don't mind...

    1) What, exactly, did the Ed psychiatric come up with for a list of problems, issues and/or diagnoses?

    2) Not sure why I thought you were from Canada... might have been getting my threads messed up - but... where are you, anyway? not an exact city/town name but... big city? smaller center? rural? maybe a state or province or general direction (e.g. south-west USA or eastern Canada)

    Please do up a signature - it helps us keep track of your situation when we're responding to threads.
  6. keista

    keista New Member

    If she's doing better in school regarding her behavior, you could talk to them and ask them SPECIFICALLY what things they think work for her. Trying to mimic the school's structured setting might prove to be beneficial.

    Your Mother's undermining could definitely have a lot to do with it. Yes, it's been 3 years since she's been gone, but if your mother was "grand-parenting" full time instead of parenting, I don't blame your daughter for wishing things were the "easy" way again (grand-parents are supposed to be able to spoil their kids - on occasion. When grand parents become primary caregivers, they lose that privilege. Sounds like your Mom never got that memo)

    The hoarding indicates Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) which indicates Anxiety. I am not a doctor and cannot diagnosis this but my DD1 has very similar issues - I have similar issues. Might be something you could read up on and see if it rings true for your daughter.

    Mine gets overwhelmed at large multi-step tasks. When it's time to clean the room, I often have to lead her. First pick up the dirty laundry and get that out of the way. WOW looks cleaner already! Next "mark off a 2X2 foot section and just pick up what is there - garbage goes into a bag, and "good stuff" goes into another pile. Continue around the room until there is only ONE pile of "good stuff" Here's where I have to actually sit with her and discuss where each item should be put away. I SHOULD have shelves and buckets labeled, but as I mentioned I have difficulties with this as well. The bad news is that I still have to "walk her through" the steps almost all the time. The GOOD news is that one day she was feeling particularly focused, and started this procedure all on her own! No, she didn't finish the room, but did complete a sizable section of it ON HER OWN!

    Sit down and really think about the process you go through when tackling a specific cleaning situation. Write down all the steps in agonizing detail. If you find that your methods seem a bit haphazard (some ppl function VERY well that way) see if you can find a way to organize them. Then walk her through, step by step. You might have to repeat HUNDREDS of times before she gets the hang of it.

    As far as the room goes, It might be easier if she cleans 10 minutes EVERY evening. That way it NEVER gets out of control. When my mother in law was living with us, she supervised the nightly cleanup. Again, I TRY to do this but my own issues always get in the way.

    It's also important (if you are going to try this step by step approach) to approach her very calmly and in a non-confrontational manner. "I've noticed that these tasks seem REALLY difficult for you, but they are VERY important life skills, so why don't I try to walk through it with you step by step, bit by bit?" SHE might also be sick and tired of the constant battles, but hasn't figure out yet how to express what the problem is, and be shocked and receptive to a "new approach" I've been living with chronic disorganization/hoarding for my entire life, and I STILL can't completely identify/verbalize what the real difficulty for me is.

    The breaking down steps can be applied to virtually any task. You mentioned that she's never completed a task - ever. Does that include fun stuff like puzzles and board games? Craft or art projects? If so, it sounds like your daughter does have much deeper issues than just your Mother's over indulgence - didn't help, but that is probably not the cause.