Need advice about 6yr old very serious behavior problems

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Bjwarren1986, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. Bjwarren1986

    Bjwarren1986 New Member

    My son has always had an aggressive side to him. To give a little background before going into the present issues: his dad was always told he was ADHD. Later as an adult he was told he had bi-polar. As an infant I had to have help with my son because before 1 he was physically aggressive. Up until recently I always thought it was learned behavior from seeing his dad attempt to abuse me. I am divorced and he has been completely out of our lives for 3 years. After our divorce my sons aggression was always towards others trying to hurt someone else, he was being protective. I noticed at 4 he would hit my mom out of anger. Being a single parent in the military we went lengths of him being with her. Now that I been out I have noticed him getting worse over the past 2 years. His behavior is back and forth at school and most of the times he's in trouble it for being the clown but he has hurt others. If he's getting in trouble or were trying to have a serious conversation with him he will laugh in your face. He never takes anything seriously. He will purposely try to make the dog hurt the cat. The dog and cat play but it has to be watched because our large puppy gets a Lil rough. I caught my son pulling the cat off something by his tail to give him to the dog. He thought it was funny even though he knew it would hurt the cat. He has kicked the dog in the face over and over after he started wrestling with her then couldn't get her off. He has hurt his step brother on purpose. He is very very smart, manipulative, lies out his teeth and shows no remorse when he hurts others. He loves to play with fire. He is only concerned with himself. He is a very good actor when he wants something but if you do give it to him he goes right back to being bad. I am losing complete control. My old fashioned whoopens only seem to excite him. I have tried positive reinforcement along with everything else I can think of. I really believe he is a sociopath and he is becoming dangerous. I'm goin to take him to see someone but I want some opinions. I do believe he is just like his dad but I don't think he's bipolar. My mom says no medications but I don't think I'm going to have a choice...he is on the verge of seriously hurting someone. Has anyone experienced something similar and what was the diagnoses?
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi there. I'm so sorry you are having a hard time. I have a few questions to ask you that will make it easier to give you support and advice. I'm not trying to be nosy (honest!). My first bit of serious advice, as an animal lover, is to rehome your animals. They are not safe and it's not fair to them to have to put up with your son's treatment of them. Ok, onto your son...

    1. Did your son have a lot of chaos and different caregivers when he was infant/toddler? Was he hit or abused by biological dad? Did he have a lot of caregivers rather than just one? Was he neglected at any time?

    2. Did your son stiffen in your arms as an infant and refuse to make eye contact? Did he meet his milestones on time? When you say he was aggressive before he was one, what did he do and what triggered it? Was bio. dad still there and what did bio. dad do about it? Did he hit him?

    3. When did his stepfather come into his life? Did you have any boyfriends before him? Sometimes early chaos and many caregivers at an early age can give children problems when they get older. Attachment problems can be serious and hurting animals and playing with fire are two traits pointing to possible attachment issues, as is a lack of conscience.

    4. Does your son have any obsessive interests? Is he sensitive to textures, certain foods, loud noise? Does he have any eccentric behaviors? Does he make odd noises in his throat or rock back and forth? Does he play well with his toys or does he take them apart, throw them, or line them up? How does he relate to his same age peers? Does he poop and pee inappropriately? Has he ever touched your stepson inappropriately?

    5. Has he ever seen anyone for an evaluation? I strongly recommend a neuropsychologist evaluation, however, if he has attachment issues, that won't show up to the neuropsychologist. It WILL rule out other disorders though.

    6. How does he do at school?

    Is it possible your ex has antisocial traits? I think you first need to get him a total neuropsychologist evaluation, then go from there and possibly, depending on his history, consider that he could have attachment problems. The earlier you get a handle on this, the better the prognosis so please don't wait. How is your husband when he hurts his son? How is your marriage?

    Good luck :) Others will come alone.
  3. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Hi, I ditto mwm and in the mean time you might want to read what your explosive child is trying to tell you by Doug Riley (just saw it on sale on Amazon ) and the explosive child by ross Greene. (I got a great used copy for a few dollars on Amazon )
    Most docs and mental health therapists do not really get attachment disorders well so if you think that could be a part (caused by disruption in trust/bonding between ages birth thru three). If he was witness to violence that young it could have deeply affected him even if he can't consciously remember.
    Look up reactive attachment disorder and attachment disorder and see what you think about the symptoms. Of course there could be other things mental health wise and/or neurological disabilities like being on the autism spectrum which can make him unable to realize or consider how others feel without support and training to learn. A neuropsychology evaluation will help you sort through this. Our neuropsychologist did diagnosis my son with reactive attachment disorder among other diagnosis.'s. We worked with specialized attachment disorder therapists and it was intensive specialized treatment, nothing like typical therapy or behavior strategies (we used Theraplay, which is not play therapy) Luckily the psychologist we used also worked with autistic children so she could adapt to that part of his learning style.

    There are therapies and some people do improve. Some do not. A therapist who is not specifically trained in this area can make things much worse so if this is a consideration for you do your homework. There are good books. One is Love is not enough. Many will discuss adoption but the therapy is the same no matter the cause.
  4. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Just a quick hug for support before I go to work. I have not had that problem but I do know that it is VERY important to seek "the right" professional. Often the help that is needed is not easy to find, been there done that, but skip all the regular Pediatricians and therapist except to get referrals. You need top notch expert help. Good luck. DDD
  5. ready2run

    ready2run New Member

    i havent' read the other responses so i may be repeating them but i supposes that is ok.... your son needs to be evaluated properly by medical professionals. he probably needs to be medicated. he definitely needs therapy, not the sit down and talking kind but they will teach him to better focus his aggression. my step-son has a lot of issues still other than aggression but his aggression has gone down a lot since having him medicated properly. he doesn't sound adhd to me. he may also be effected because of being bounced around and family changes with dad leaving and being shuffled back and forth between you and your mom. for a special needs kid that can be more traumatic than it would for the average kid. i would get him on the wait lists as fast as possible because with a diagnosis of some type will come medication and services, and they take time to get set up. for now you should start keeping records of daily issues to help show patterns of behaviour to the person who evaluates him. this was helpful to us when we originally brought difficult child to the doctor because it showed that the aggression was not just sometimes and that it wasn't predictable. for some kids a bit of medications and therapy are all they need to get to a place where they can live normal and healthy lives. sometimes it is not so easy, but that is the first thing to try. you will need to find a proper child psychiatrist who deals with this type of thing regularely because psychologists and pediatritions often misdiagnose or don't understand the full nature of the issue.
  6. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I agree with the others that you are dealing with much more than your average clear diagnoses. There is something serious going on here. I would guess that his early childhood where he saw some of the abuse between you and your ex did effect him and then you being gone so much in the military didnt help things. You couldnt help that but I am going to place bets that your mom and you didnt parent in the same way. At the moment I would say that spankings will not work and I am a parent who does believe in spanking under certain situations but from the way you describe your son's reactions, I dont think it will work.

    As far as can a child of your son's age become a sociopath? Yes. There is a book out by Jonathan Kellerman called Savage Spawn: Reflections on Violent Children that is an excellent book on this subject. Yes I realize that Kellerman is mostly known for writing fiction but he is also a child psychologist and he writes non-fiction too. He is an excellent phd child psychologist. Its not a thick book so it doesnt take long to get through but it will leave you with a really profound understanding of the psychology of violent kids.