New Here

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Needsupport, Aug 13, 2008.

  1. Needsupport

    Needsupport New Member

    Hi, I'm new here. Still learning my way around. I have 4 children ranging in age from 5 to 24; 3 boys & 1 girl, she's the 5 y/o.

    My 7 y/o was diagnosed with-ADHD with-Impulsivity about 2 yrs ago. He's on Focalin XR, 15 mg. The doctor thinks that he's showing symptoms of ODD as well & I have to agree. In fact, I've suspected this all along.

    My issue is disciplining. I've tried to talk to my friends but because they don't have children like this they don't understand & think that I just need to be "harder" on him. And maybe I do because nothing else seems to work with-him.

    I've tried time outs, taking things away, talking to him, behavioral charts, ignoring bad behavior & praising good. Nothing seems to work.

    I never know what's going to set him off, how bad it will be or how long it will last. I just need some input. I need to know that I'm not alone.

    My husband is "in the picture" but frankly not much help...
  2. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Forgive me! But you've just written the mantra of just about every Mom on the board!

    Welcome to the crowd!

    You might want to take a look at Ross Greene's "The Explosive Child". Our kids don't respond to getting tougher!

    More will be by soon!

  3. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    I have to get off my butt and go finish unpacking....
    But I wanted to welcome you and fully agree, this is a group that has seen and done it all! We will offer support and any advice we can.
  4. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?


    Ditto Beth. In a nutshell, that's my story, too. lol

    The Explosive Child gave me the mindset to, for the first time, have at least some impact on my son. I beleive in the archives is a wonderfully written little summary of the book with adaptations for younger kids. Its a different way to think, but it really has been the biggest impact we've had so far in parenting my son.

    As far as talking to friends, its very, VERY hard, in my humble opinion, to find friends who don't have difficult child's that will even attempt to understand life with a difficult child. I have given up. With my "easy child parent only" friends, I talk baseball, dance class, and "how's the weather" stuff. I only talk about difficult child's with parents of difficult child's or my best friend, who was around my first difficult child enuf to know she didn't know what difficult child life was like - and who can't truly understand, but tries and cares.

    Sorry you had to find us, but welcome to the group.
  5. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi Needsupport, yup. been there done that. Sounds familiar! About the husband, too. :)

    You and your husband have to be on the same page. It took me yrs to get that part straight. Even now, I call him on the cell to tell him what I'm doing with-difficult child so that husband doesn't come home and mess it up. (Ex. Last night, he said very loudly, "I'm going to rent a movie to watch with-difficult child tonight." I said NO! a bit too enthusiastically and husband really bristles at that, but then I whispered, "He's been watching TV since noon, which makes nearly 6 hrs and he can't watch any more." He agreed, but sheesh, I wish he'd go in the other rm and chat with-me instead of announcing it loudly as he's about ready to walk about the door, Know what I mean??)

    Also, I like The Explosive Child by Ross Greene. Sometimes I go back over parts of it and re-read, just as a reminder or pick-me-up when I get discouraged.
    You have to decide which battles are worth fighting.

    For me, one of the main battles was being able to run errands with-difficult child and not have him melt down every time. Another one was not having him melt down at home. He's 11 now, and I have to say, some of that comes with-maturity, some with-medications, and some with-consistency. If he wants to melt down and scream, he's got to do it in his rm.
    He cannot ruin yet another dinner or family night by acting like a maniac.
    Getting him to go to his rm with-o a physical fight was yet another battle. (You have to outsmart him.)

    What are some of the things that make your son explode?
  6. rob#30

    rob#30 hangin in there

    Welcome, Im kinda of new here too but let me tell you, you will wonder what you did before you found us! There is nothing like being able to read and react to stories that are just like yours!! I go through the exact same thing with my "friends". They dont have a difficult child so no matter what they say they can not understand what we go through! Just knowing that you are not alone is a weight off your shoulders. Read on, you are bound to find endlesss helpful resources.:D
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the board. I have a few questions that can help us help you.
    1/ Who diagnosed him? Do you agree with the diagnosis? Are the medications really helping or not?

    2/ Are there any psychiatric problems on either side of his biological tree? Any mood disorders or substance abuse?

    3/How was his early development? Speech, eye contact, cuddling, imaginative play? Does he know how to make friends? How does he do academically and behaviorally in school? Does he act better out of the home than at home?

    4/ What sort of behaviors worry you? Does he rage?

    You may want to do a signature like the one I did below. Others will come along soon.
  8. Needsupport

    Needsupport New Member

    Thank you all for your warm welcome. It's a lonely world out here.

    I will definately look into that book that is being recommended. That's how I learned as much as I have about ADHD, ODD, etc. 2 yrs ago I didn't have a clue! But there's still so much for me to learn.

    1/ Who diagnosed him? Do you agree with the diagnosis? Are the medications really helping or not? I had him tested by a psychologist. He is under the treatment of a psychiatrist & sees a counselor. I do agree with the diagnosis. I did a lot of research on it because I wasn't willing to just accept what these people were telling me. He meets practically every symptom for ADHD & for ODD. As for is the medications are working? I think they are, yes, but are they working enough? I don't kow? I'm at a point where I don't know what I should be doing, what he should be doing & what the medications should be doing. Sometimes I feel that I'm not parenting him right.

    2/ Are there any psychiatric problems on either side of his biological tree? Any mood disorders or substance abuse? Nothing that's been medically confirmed although I suspect that my son's father & his mother both have some mental issues. Also, my husbands older son was diagnosed with-ADD.

    3/How was his early development? Speech, eye contact, cuddling, imaginative play? Does he know how to make friends? How does he do academically and behaviorally in school? Does he act better out of the home than at home? He was a very loving, cuddly baby, but usually only with me. He didn't want to go to his father. He struggles to make friends, usually makes friends with-the same "type" of child as he is so they end up getting into trouble. He struggles academically & behaviorally in school & is in a class where the teacher is trained to teach ADHD children. It seems to be helping. He only went into this class the last part of last year so this will be his first full year. I have not noticed a pattern with-his behavior. Some days he's good at school/daycare but not at home, other times it's the opposite or he's great both places or "bad" for a lack of a better term at both places.

    4/ What sort of behaviors worry you? Does he rage? He has a very short temper. Small things set him off. He's defiant to me & his father. He's been playing with-fire. He's been caught stealing & lying. I worry about him acedemically & I also worry about him making the "right" friends throughout his life. I just want to give him every opportunity available to him.
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Okie, dokie. Thanks.
    Now I'll give you my .02 :)
    I would have him re-evaluated by a neuropsychologist. They are awesome evaluators and do very intensive testing. I have no idea what the Psychologist did, but if she didn't do the Whole Nine Yards he/she could have missed something important. There are many disorders that look like ADHD/ODD. Have you done any research on high functioning autism/Aspergers? Early onset bipolar? These are two often missed dxs. that are mistaken as ADHD/ODD. Defiance and hypernness abound with both of them. I will give you a few links so you can study up on them if you like. It's best to do your homework rather than to just accept the first diagnosis. Sadly, often it's not the right one. He should not be raging and in my opinion should not be so inconsistent if the medications were working...which is a red flag that possibly the diagnosis and, therefore, treatment is not right.
    Does your son understand social cues?
    Does he have trouble sleeping?
    Looking at these two links and judge for yourself. In the end, we decide if we feel our kids are getting the right treatment or not. My son's very first diagnosis was ADHD/ODD. He was put on Ritalin, Concerta, Adderall (made him aggressive and mean) and a few others. They did not really help and as he got older it became apparent that more was going on.

    I also don't think it is your parenting. I don't know you, but there are kids who practically have to raise themselves who can behave. I believe our kids are wired differently. They are VERY hard to accurately diagnosis., but once you get it right you can find a great improvement!! Ok, here are the promised links. One is for childhood onset bipolar (this is especially for anyone with a child diagnosed with ODD of any kind) and Aspergers Syndrome which can also mimic ADHD/ODD. Good luck and glad you're here.
  10. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I'm with MWM - autism in any form should be considered/kept in mind because it does need different handling.

    The ODD signs you observe can be the result of a combination of a kid with impulse control issues, frustration problems and inattention all severely aggravated by the sort of strict parenting which we have all believed would HELP such kids, but which in reality often makes them worse.

    For a fast preview of "Explosive Child" have a look at the Early Childhood forum, there is a sticky there with some really useful discussion on this book. And this is something YOU can do, apart from medications and experts putting their oar in.

    Welcome to the site.

  11. Needsupport

    Needsupport New Member

    I will for sure look into the web sites mentioned and also the book that's been recommended. Thank you all so much. I'm sure I'll have more questions! =)
  12. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member


    When you get to the FAQ forum check out The Chandler Papers. Fire starting - playing with fire, is listed under one of the diagnosis there.

    My difficult child picks all the wrong friends, too. But, they never last too long in her case so I do not worry to much about it.

    Dads are usually reluctant to believe there is anything wrong with their children. Most feel it just needs more (read that stricter) parenting. Not all dads - we even have some here on the board that went looking for answers themselves.
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    My own opinion (which is layman's mom) is that it sounds more like early onset bipolar than Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), however they CAN look somewhat alike. The difference I see with my son and bipolar kids is that he has a lot more control over himself and doesn't rage. He pouts and stamps his foot, but is pretty mellow except when he has to transition quickly or do something he doesn't like to do.
    Bipolar IS diagnosed in the US in kids, and, although there are no blood tests for any of these disorders, I do believe it exists for children, and I believe that I was one who had it as a child. Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids tend to improve tremedously with interventions whereas BiPolar (BP) kids struggle more and it's a matter of good medications with mood disorders. Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) has a different cause and is a different animal. Me (bipolar) and my son (Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)) are not alike much. Yet professionals really often seem not to know what is really wrong with our kids...they just take stab-in-the-dark guesses...anyway, rant over.
  14. Needsupport

    Needsupport New Member

    I'm still trying to learn the abbreviations so please bear with me. :D At my son's psychiatrist appointment yest he did mention that we will watch & be aware of the symptoms of bi-polar because he is starting to show some of them.

    I understood going into this that diagnosing & treatment would not be easy, but I wasn't prepared for the feeling of frustration & helplessness. I'm glad that I found this place where you all understand! And I'm lucky in that I have a great group of doctors that I trust because I've heard horror stories about that as well.

    I found the school my son was going to because their answer was to send him to a "troubled" kids school. I fought that & they finally found a school where the teacher is specially trained for these types of children & her goal is get them mainstreamed again. She tried to teach them ways to cope with their feelings & in the meantime brings them back up academically. She's been such a Godsend to us.

    I wish that my husband was one of those that went looking for answers. He sat back & let me do all the arguing with the school, finding the doctors, deciding on medication, all of it with no support. He'd tell me that nothing was wrong with-our son, that he was just being a normal boy, that he just needed to be disciplined better (like you said!).
  15. Calgon_Take_Me_Away

    Calgon_Take_Me_Away New Member

    Welcome ~ I'm a fairly new one here as well, but it's great to be "understood" not just looked at as wonky :laugh: