Mother of Teen (13) with Bipolar and ODD

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by ParentAnswers, Nov 20, 2009.

  1. ParentAnswers

    ParentAnswers New Member

    I am a very frustrated. My son got diagnosed with bipolar two years ago after several years misdiagnosed with ADD. Now, two years into treatment, he doesn't seem to be betting better. I have been at my wits end with him. He is on medication for bipolar and has been seeing a psychiatrist. I believe he has ODD because he is extremely defiant on a consistent basis. Almost every day of the week. He argues with us and any authority figure; blames everyone else for his behavior; doesn't have any desire to accomplish his school work; annoys the family members on purpose; truly promotes discord between my husband (stepdad), me and himself. This may seem extreme but it is true. I feel bad just having to write this. I would probably get an academy performance from him if he were to read this. Between the manic episodes, the depression, and the defiance, I am at my wits end. However, I am a reader and I try to be a proactive Mom. Is there any medication for ODD? I have joined a family center for him to get treatment with a therapist as well as a psychiatrist. I realize behavior modification is a goal here, but we need some assistance for peace in the home. Any ideas? I have taken the medical and therapeutic steps. And, yes, it takes time. I know. Just curious if there are any other steps I can take for the family's sanity. I also have a 17 year old and a 7 year old in the home.
    Lasted edited by : Nov 20, 2009
  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator


    ODD is typically a by-product of other disorders. When the other disorders are treated appropriately, the oppositional behaviors generally subside. As such, there are no medications specifically for ODD.

    What medications/doses are being used to treat your son's bipolar disorder? Do you feel they're making things better, worse or about the same?

    Again, welcome.
  3. TPaul

    TPaul Idecor8

    Dear parent,
    First let me welcome you to the board here. You will find a wealth of info and experience that are shared openly and freely. The weekend are a little slow on the boards. You will find more postings on the weekdays, so don't worry if there are not alot of post until Monday, ok.

    As small stated, ODD is really a bi product of some other condition. My son, who is 11, was given an ODD classification that we soon found out was Bipolar. I suspected this since his mother was BiPolar (BP). He acted just like you are stating that your son is and in addition he was constantly getting in trouble again this year in school, worse than the previous year. The ODD many time is made and it seems to want to blame the parents for lack of parenting skills. I personally think that the ODD should be eliminated from being labeled for a condition that they do not yet know what it is in a child in trouble.

    Shortly after a psychiatrist,(I always spell that wrong, thank God for spell check, lol) visit with our difficult child he was started on prozac and ambilify. For him, It worked absolutely wonders. After he got adjusted to the side affect of it making him sleepy during they day, there have been no, let me say again, no trouble at school at all. This medication combo for our difficult child has made a change that has been like night and day. He is a different child now. Loving, and wants to be loved. Likes time with Dad now, and likes to be hugged and kissed good night. I shared here on the board how for the first time in years he held my hand while we walked in a store, by his own idea, and how I had to keep from bawling in the store. Still makes me teary eyed.

    Try to get a good doctor and find the right medication combo that will work. Don't give up, but keep trying.

    I know how we can get at our wits end with these challenges in our home. With a BiPolar (BP) wife and then a BiPolar (BP) child and with 4 other children in the house, I was about to go crazy. Things can and will change, with the right diagnosis and with a good medication combo. Not everyone has a night and day experience but many get at least some help.

    Know that we are always here for you on the board. That we all know and understand all the things that you are feeling. We know the frusteration and anger that these conditions can bring up and out in us. Need to vent a little. Go right ahead, all of us have since being on this board at one time or another. It is suprising how much it helps to just lay everything on the table and get a load off our chest and shoulders.

    So agian welcome and do not give up.
  4. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    PA, welcome!

    He may not at the right dosage for his medications, and he may not even be on the right medications. Without knowing what he's taking, it's hard to say. I do know that it is often a VERY lengthy process to figure out what are the right medications are. My difficult child 2 was initially diagnosis'd ADHD when he was 5, and the bipolar diagnosis was just finally confirmed this year and he's nearly 13. The bipolar became truly clear about two years ago, but because our psychiatrist wanted to be absolutely certain, he hesistated giving the official diagnosis. He did still continue to treat the symptoms as if they were bipolar, and difficult child 2 is doing much better now. It's not perfect, but it's better.

    Does your son have an IEP at school?

    Does he see a therapist?

    Have you read the book "The Explosive Child?"

    I look forward to learning more about your situation.
  5. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    Hi Parentanswers

    I am new here son is 9 & recently diagnosed Bipolar after 3 years of misdiagnosis as ADHD and anxiety disorder. He is taking risperdal at the moment and we are titrating up. I just want you to know that u r not alone and I am in the same mess. I am scared to even think about the teen years with him...but I know God will give me strength for it.

    As for the ODD...I think that bipolar kids are extrememly argumentative and defy authority. Ive read a few books and just from experience I can relate. His doctor says the oppositional behavior is due to mood extremes and we need to get him stabilized. His doctor says it will stop being so horrible once we get to a therapeutic level of medications, etc.

    I relate to the "annoys family members on purpose" and "creates discord". I am not sure if your difficult child has sleep problems or other BiPolar (BP) symptoms that add to the problem...but my difficult child has bad sleep problems, night terrors, etc. I think lack of sleep adds to ODD symptoms too. My 11 yr old daughter is not bipolar and she suffers this lack of peace and craziness too...I feel so bad about it. My husband is also Bipolar and this adds an entire other realm of discord and lack of peace to our household too. So it is kind of like "girls against boys" in our house, LOL!!!!!!!! I must laugh or I will cry!

    Just know u r not alone.........I am in the roller coaster with you and I hope it slows down soon for us both.:faint: