I am a working mother of 3 girls. The oldest is our difficult child, and also my step-daughter. She is 12 years old and only recently came to live with us. My husband and his DEX did parted on bad terms, he didn't get to spend any time with her up until recently. difficult child was in horrible home situation prior to us getting custody, which only stemmed from bio mother being imprisoned on drug charges for the second time. difficult child was exposed to all forms of abuse and neglect, among other things. CPS removed her from her bio mother's home and placed her in foster care pending an investigation of our home to ensure that we could provide a secure, stable, positive environment for difficult child. *This evaluation was similar to that of what a foster parent goes through before they are approved to take in children.* Once we all checked out, she was placed in our care, within limitation, that CPS maintains guardianship of her for her first six months with us. CPS has appointed her a PDR that has her taking medication that we are concerned about. Her "diagnosis" include all these labels such as ODD, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Borderline (BPD), PSTD (including night terrors), and ADHD. It seems to my husband and I that the medications are contradicting each other, and just fueling her symptoms. They have her taking Concerta, 54mg, which has several adverse side effects, such as agressive behavior, fits of rage, etc. These are problems she already has WITHOUT the medications (see the ODD descript if you are not familiar). She used to take Seroquel to combat this behavior and help with the added stress of the side effects of concerta, but CPS would not allow her to continue taking this medication while she was in their care. She has recently started acting out with more violence, than passive agression, and this makes the concern greater. She also recently experimented with cutting herself, which she says was "not impressed with" and that she will not do it again. My question is this. Everything I read on ODD mentions that so many of these children also have ADHD, so surely most PDR's are familiar with ways to treat the ADHD without making the symptoms of the ODD worse. Unfortunately, this is not a concept that her PDR understands, or else just refuses to consider. Her PDR is appointed by CPS, and with much fight, we were able to convince them to allow us to take her to someone else. But she doesn't get to see the new PDR for another month!! I come to this forum for several reasons. Number one, this is not a child that we raised from birth that we have been able to adapt our techniques as she grows,so we are coming into the middle of this without a clue as to how to handle it. I would like to get some suggestions from other parents dealing with agressive, violent pre-teen/teenaged children on ways to enforce positive behavior. I am having a difficult time with the whole "pick your battles" thing, because I am still not sure which battles are the more important ones, and we have to be even pickier, because every battle turns into a REAL battle . . .if that makes any sense. Another reason I am here is, working with a PDR on a monthly basis, a PsychoTherapist on a weekly basis, and a Crisis Intervention worker on a weekly (sometimes twice a week basis) we have been given loads and loads of information and tips that we may be able to pass along to help someone else. The other concern that we have at this point is, being the mother of two easy child's ages three and five (who are sometimes not so P, but there are no major behavioral concerns at this time). We are spending so much time with our difficult child that sometimes I feel that they are not getting the amount of attention that they need at such a tender age. They are not neglected by any means, but sometimes they are craving attention and our attention is directed elsewhere, which causes them to act out in negative ways to command that attention. Also, they are seeing the behavior that our difficult child displays, and picking up on some of those things, thinking that it must be okay since their big sis does it. All of this combined with the fact that our difficult child also causes a need for concern as far as being allowed to be left unattended. She is self-destructive and she has threatened to commit suicide, so when she is upset or acting out, we aren't even allowed to send her to her room alone. Not only does this knock out the option of us sending her there for a cooldown period while we attend to the little ones, but also doesn't allow us to remove ourselves from the situation to calm OURSELVES down, becuase she has gotten very good at learning exactly how to push our buttons. If anyone has any advice on some different techniques we can try to deal with these behaviors, please respond!!! And I will keep an eye on everyone else's posts as well, and if there is anything that I feel I may be of help on, I will certainly try to!! Thank you all so much for being here and hopefully we can develop a great helpful working relationship and all work together to raise our difficult child's. They may not be easy child's, but with the right amount of love and care, they can certainly turn into PA's (perfect adults)!!!!!!